Google Music Goes Live in the Cloud

Google has dipped into musical endeavors with the launch of Google Music in mid-November. Originally, the service launched back in May in a beta version. Launched as a suite of music services, it is quite obvious that this is Google’s attempt to take on Amazon and iTunes in cloud and other music storage space.

Introducing Google Music

Although it is rumored that Google has been attempting to secure partnerships with four major record labels, currently, Google Music simply allows users to store their purchases and upload other files to their music cloud.

Advantages and Issues

Google Music has seems to have its own pros and cons.

  • There are two different sites. The Google Music site is the library and player. However, you must purchase the music on the Android Market.
  • Google Music will automatically back up most music files including iTunes. As you do the intitial set up, Google Music will prompt you to upload any previous music files you have. iTunes, Windows Media Player libraries, or any other folder you designate.
  • Many Android devices now have full support for Google Music, some have not even mentioned creating it yet. Since one of Google Music’s main selling point is its ability to replace iTunes services, this could pose quite a problem for many Android users.
  • Although there is no official app for the iPhone, users can enjoy Google Music services on iOS devices. A pleasing surprise is that even their site is formatted properly to be easily viewable and easy to navigate on iPhone view screens.
  • Without a doubt, there is loads of free music. However, you will need to share your credit card info with Google just to get the free tunes.
  • You can share only the songs you have purchased to Google Plus.

Regardless of your choice in digital music stores, now may be a good time to get in on what Google Music and their shop has to offer you.

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About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

Why Not “Buffer” Your Social Posts – A Review

Buffer App - Be Awesome on Social MediaOne of the hardest things for people new to social media to understand is the time it takes to post and engage within the various social media platforms.  And, it’s true.  To actively engage with your followers, fans, and subscribers does take time.  But, finding the information and scheduling the posts doesn’t have to be a large part of that time.

Enter Buffer, where their tagline is, “Be awesome on Social Media.”

What is “Buffer”?

Quite simply, it is a tool to allow you to share content on any schedule that you choose.

After linking your Twitter and Facebook accounts, you decide what times you would like the app to post or tweet for you, up to four times per day.  Then, all you have to do is fill your “buffer” with great content, and they take care of posting or tweeting at the pre-determined times.

How can I “Buffer”?

Using Buffer could not be easier.  There are add-ons and plug-ins for all major browsers, including Chrome and Firefox.  Just install the add-on, and when you are on a website you want to share, click the buffer icon, and either add it or share it immediately.  It’s that simple.

And, if they don’t have a plug-in for you, just e-mail the link, with whatever text you wish as the subject line, and it is added to your buffer.  This is also great to add items from your mobile phone, as well.

Do you use the web interface of Twitter?  Well, Buffer is there, as well, making it incredibly easy to buffer your re-tweets.

How do I Buffer?

What about “Analytics”?

Buffer also gives you great analytics for every post sent, including re-tweets, click through, and number of people reached.  This is great information so that you can analyze and evaluate timing and content that is of interest to your followers.

Buffer Analytics

How much does all this awesomeness cost?

Buffer, for the majority of users, is completely FREE.  That’s right, for free, you get to add one twitter account, one Facebook account, and have 10 items in your buffer.

Need more?  There are plans for $10 per month giving you 50 posts in the Buffer and 5 social accounts, and $99 per month which offers unlimited posts in the Buffer and unlimited social accounts.

There are many tools available to help schedule posts and that offer analytics, including Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, and Sprout Social, and I don’t believe Buffer is meant to replace these tools.  It is only another tool in the social media tool chest, making our sharing of great content even easier.

Tools and Resources

Buffer 

Hootsuite 

Tweetdeck

Sprout Social

About Craig Yaris

Craig E. Yaris is the owner of EsquireTech Solutions, which helps small business get found on the social web, whether through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, he can both teach you the effective use of any social network or act as your social media manager, enabling you to reach your clients where they are and when they want to hear from you. He can teach your organization the social media best practices that can help you use the tools of today to cost-effectively increase your bottom line. EsquireTech Solutions brings the social web to your business. Visit EsquireTech Solutions or call 516-495-9107 .

Express Yourself with Prezi.com

One of the biggest problems public speakers and businessmen face is how to make their presentation sharp, concise and informative without making is dull and uninspiring.

There is a tool that can help do just that. It is called Prezi.com and it enables a speaker to make video presentations that are unique, informative and entertaining.

Developed by the Hungarian architect, Adam Somali-Fischer, in 2001 as a visual aid in presenting architectural designs, the interface enabled zooming in and out of elements on the screen. Since there was no zooming interface at the time, each presentation had to be coded individually.

In 2007, a Budapest University professor managed to convince Mr. Somali-Fischer to develop a publicly available ZUI (zooming user interface) and in 2009 Prezi.com was launched.

Using cloud based presentation software, any text, video or image can be put together into frames. The designer then decides what is important in this image and how close he wants to get to it. For instance; zooming into the dot above the letter “i” will reveal an image that can grow larger and larger, filling the screen. Designers can pan and zoom between images, add music and sound effects.

Unlike PowerPoint, another presentation interface, Prezi allows map layout and nonlinear navigation. It can show complex systems in a cognitive and mind mapping kind of way. Although the interface is cloud based it allows subscribers to work offline and save the presentation to their computer on Windows, Mac and Linux.

The designer can pan and zoom, can import media from other sources: videos from YouTube, PDFs and images and create a storyline that will engage the audiences. The presentation can be displayed online and offline and he can collaborate with others, in real time, with Prezi Meeting.

Prezi is a ‘freemium’, meaning customers can use it for free, but they must publish their work on the Prezi site. The Prezi Pro which is the paid option allows subscribers to work offline and they can make their presentations private. Plans start at $59.

The World Economic Forum is using Prezi as part of their media strategy. TED Conferences curator, Chris Anderson, used the interface in his presentation in 2010, as did the British newspaper The Guardian in their new World Map graphics on their site.

Prezi is now available as an iPad app. Now you can create, collaborate and present on the go. There are also publications to help navigate the program.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

New Google Newsletter and Mobile Adwords Features

Google Adwords launched new features in September 2011. These new features are geared towards making site clicks and even subscriptions to site newsletters or blogs easier to accomplish. Being able to get signed up to internal site options from the external source of a Google browser could go a long way in increasing traffic for those who utilize these methods.

AdWords Subscribe Option

Adwords now provides an option to allow Google search engine users to subscribe directly from a PPC ad. The option to subscribe to newsletters or email lists can be displayed on top or side ads.

All ads are displayed with “Privacy Info” that lets the viewer know that information shared in the input boxes will be shared with the advertiser.

Mobile Landing Pages

A recent study found that 61% of mobile browsers are not likely to return to a site that does not provide a good mobile experience. In response, Google initiated a shift in their policy that will now reward mobile sites with good optimization. Users with good mobile optimization who promote their sites with Google Adwords will now receive better performance. The ads created will drive traffic at a lower cost if they directly link to your site that is optimized for mobile users.

How Will This Affect Me?

If you are a business owner, whether or not you use Google Adwords, the time to optimize your site for mobile users is now. Even without the use of Google Adwords to promote a site, knowing that over half of mobile browsers will never return to your non-optimized site should be enough to push you into sprucing up your site to accommodate users on mobile devices. Getting rid of flash heavy content is a great step towards optimizing for mobile usage.

How Do I Optimize My Site for Mobile?

Google has offered a few suggestions to help you get your site optimized for mobile usage.

  • Keep the layout and design simple
  • Prioritize your content
  • Use markedly mobile features
  • Make your site easy to convert

If you want to know how well your site functions on mobile devices, grab your device and load up your site. If it is frustrating for you to navigate, you may want to make the changes required to encourage mobile use of your web pages.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

What Makes Mobile Search Marketing Beneficial?

Mobile marketing changed its definition in the early 2000’s when the original meaning, which was marketing on the go, changed into mobile search marketing, which are in essence, marketing techniques carried out over a mobile device.

SMS marketing is an advertising technique that involves the collection of mobile phone numbers to add to a messaging platform database. These numbers are collected so that when a special promotion or offer becomes available, the number list owner can send out a mass message to what they hope will be future repeat customers. SMS marketing relies on opt-in users due to practices established by the Mobile Marketing Association to help prevent unwanted messaging, similar to the protection offered by the Federal Do Not Call registry.

The fact that SMS messages are commonly read in the first four minutes after receipt means that this form of marketing is highly convertible.

A New Digital World

If we thought SMS marketing was impressive, then came the smartphone. A new world of marketing was then opened in many new forms.

  • MMS – Multimedia message service
  • Mobile Web Marketing
  • In-Game Marketing
  • Mobile Marketing via QR Codes
  • User-Controlled Media

Ever-Changing Media

So exactly what is changing about mobile search marketing? For one, it has become infinitely more complex than the simple SMS original formats. Mobile search marketing is unique not only in its format, but also in the way that it approaches the consumer. Traditional forms of marketing can be a combination of intrusive versus elusive.

Intrusive methods include telephone marketing, television advertising, and even door-to-door sales. Although intrusive methods have shown their own positive statistics about effectiveness, many elements such as increased crime rates, new laws and regulations, or increasing costs have made the intrusive forms of marketing much less lucrative in recent years.

Elusive methods are the most effective and can include in-game marketing, user-controlled media, or mobile web marketing. This type of marketing is effective in the sense that the advertisements are usually an ‘in addition to’ or bonuses. For instance, users can play the free game on their phone, or they can purchase the nearby advertisement option to achieve ‘pro’ status on the game. Users can utilize a particular browser and that browser may support and advertise their own series of media, apps, or programs.

Although some marketers still argue that mobile queries constitute too little of an overall end-result to make the campaign effort worthwhile, it is a notable fact that Google’s mobile query share has grown over five times in the last couple of years. Mobile search continues to grow at an accelerated rate than traditional search options.

There may be no time like the immediate present to gain pioneer advantages and initiate your mobile testing and paid search campaigns right away.

 

 Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

Facebook Changes & Facebook Timeline: Successful Social Media Disaster [OPINION]

Often the missing element in successful social media is emotion. Why do millions flock to social media every hour, but only a few engage?

Traditional businesses have missed the mark, and Facebook’s recent changes are an example of how important it is to hit the mark, even if it seems contrary to your brand.

Facebook’s changes in September 2011 should mark the most “Successful Social Media Disaster” of the Social Media Revolution. At every turn the top topic inside of Facebook is Facebook’s changes. While the overwhelming majority are quick to criticize, most have failed to realize that the change is creating the most talked about event in social media history, well in social media anyway.

How did Facebook create a “Successful Social Media Disaster”

Anger! The keystone to successful social media is emotion. While thousands of would be social media experts flood our networks with useless posts every day, the small group that manages to actually capture our attention are the ones that are unconventional and tap into our emotions.

Facebook did not make its changes slowly, it didn’t even transition people into the new features. Facebook’s policy was a flat out “here you go, deal with it”. This change and introduction captured one of the key emotional states in social media. While others lay claim to Google+ being the big winner having opened their G+ network to everyone in the same week, all the talk or buzz is Facebook!

Opening the Google+ network to everyone should have been an event that created buzz for Google. This G+ buzz should have lasted over the course of at least a few weeks, allowing it to capture articles and feedback from both followers and critiques, but Facebook’s move cut that off cold. G+ might get a mention here and there among the articles, but Zuckenburg has stolen G+’s thunder and managed to evolve his social network in one swoop.

The purpose of this article is not to support or criticize the changes to Facebook, but to highlight the importance of emotion in social media, and how Facebook has used it to trample Googles G+ public launch. How Facebook uses this to their brands advantage is another story. Most politicians claim there’s no such thing as bad PR, only bad PR managers and brand storytellers who fail to capitalize on the spotlight. This would seem to be the case with Social Media, most are better having something being said then nothing at all, then you can direct and capitalize on being talked about in one fashion or another.

Enter Facebook Timeline:

This new feature looks to be the family, tree and life story publication of YOU! No Publisher needed!

Get Timeline NOW! Click Here!

***Your timeline is now live — Developer Release****

****Please note: During the developer release, only other developers will be able to see your new timeline. Everyone else will see your old profile.***

PS: Looks like there’ll be no way to hide who you are ever again!

Sources:

 

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

Google+ is Open to ALL and Google+ Leading Mobile Development

Today Google plus went live and open to everyone. With 20 million people engaging in the first three months in its trail stage, the Google+ platform now hopes to capture the masses.

While some writers like Robert over at BundlePost are betting against Google+ and predicating it to be the threat to Google, I am confident that Google has secured itself in the mobile and cloud space. This move by Google to capture mobile so early is what will have Google on top for a very long time. Google+ is in a safe place, capturing Social Media engagement and tailoring to the mobile trend.

Google Leading in the Mobile Space:

While I will give credit to Apple and Facetime for being the first to the mobile video market, the wifi limitation left users feeling like video chat was still more Sci-Fi then reality. In comes T-Mobile and 4G with the MyTouch4G, now you can use video even when not on a wifi signal, however the user interfaces are scattered and the experience doesn’t seem to capture the social feel to being in a room with a real person.

Google Hangout is introduced on PC and groups of people start to engage, converse and learn about each other in real time in a social setting that makes you rethink about your daily appearance.  One of the first things I noticed was the trend of individuals who previously relied on a single picture having to rethink the way there where dressed, the room there where in and what was behind them. Communication skills kicked back into hi swing as the most important communication indicator was alive and kicking, body language.

This move to get a fully functioning communication tool in the hands of the largest growing market in the world should be enough to secure Google’s future.

Android & G+

When you take a look at how Android has performed in market penetration, you can’t help but realize that Google is just getting started. It’s the little things that are setting Google apart from the competition, i.e. Google Cloud contacts from the release of the G1. Androids first phone was cloud ready as anyone who stored their contacts on their google account never again had to worry about lost phones, moving contacts to new phones etc. This was done without wires and with no need for a PC or software.

Flash, love it or hate it Android got it. You almost wonder why Apple left the door open like this, but Flash adopted by the Google into Android mobile technology was the nail that broke the growth rate of the iPhone and then later allowed Android devices to surpass iPads in global sales and users.

Google+ brought lots of new features, in addition to the latest Hangouts, the G+ app allowed you to upload videos and pictures in real time to the google+ account meaning that in addition to ease of sharing, you could lose your phone during the day and still save your memories, promo photos etc.

In the end, google is innovating for the future, not just today. That’s the sign of a strong company, one I am sure my grandkids will love and hate, long after Apple and Facebook are gone.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

Turn Your Social Media Content into Something Incredible with FeedFabrik

By now most folks who use the internet for work, play, or both, are likely to have generated a bit of personal or business content on their social media sites. Blogs, videos, articles, tweets, and more have their own special place online for quick and easy access when you need to reference them, share them, or simply enjoy viewing them.

What if you could take your already available content and give it a shiny new cover? What if you could avoid the inevitable process that most all content suffers from as it gets old, left behind, and falls into Internet Purgatory, likely never to be seen (easily) again.

FeedFabrik to the Rescue

FeedFabrik offers the ability to capture your own digital life and turn it into a proud display in a couple of different ways.

Create Your FriendPoster

Users can integrate with their Facebook account to quickly create a FriendPoster. This poster displays all of your social network friends by listing them on the date of their birth with their current profile picture. Users can choose from five different display theme styles as well as selecting different options for saving the creation. FriendPoster comes in:

  • PDF
  • Poster
  • Desktop Wallpaper

It will also be available with gift voucher options very soon.

Make a BlogBook

Turning your blog into a book may have endless possibilities. However, doing so has long proven to be a process usually full of bugs and issues and, in general, difficult to manage while retaining an aesthetically pleasing document. FeedFabrik’s blog book creator can smoothly turn your current blog into a well-designed book. FeedFabrik has full integration options on:

  • Blogger
  • WordPress.com
  • Self-Hosted WordPress Blogs
  • Typepad
  • Tumblr

Your book is prepared for you automatically and is ready in just a few moments. Users are free to take advantage of the customization options to tweak the book’s originality.

FeedFabrik has much to offer those who utilize social media on a regular basis and has several shining selling points when it comes to those who work in the publishing industry.

Alexa shows a 1500% increase in traffic views over the last three months and is currently ranked at #486,284 in the world with most users spending an average of three minutes on site.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

Earthquake: Twitter An Emergency Communication Tool

What is your Social Media Emergency Management plan?

At around 2pm today, an Earthquake with an epicenter about 34 miles NW of Richmond, VA. 87 miles SW of DC. began felt as far north as #NYC and New Jersey.

While tens of thousands flocked to their cell phones and TV service, twitter spread the word to millions. Twitter had everything from people talking about the earthquake to news organizations using twitter to share the little info they had.

Fox News reported that they were having trouble reaching personal over the cell phones and had to turn to twitter for information.

The experience of the earthquake should signify the importance of a tool like twitter, it allows you to gather information and operates on a different bandwidth through data plans allowing others to communicate when the cell network becomes overwhelmed.  

It’s time to revisit your states, county, business and family emergency communication plans, should you not be able to reach each other over the phone, do you have a twitter account on each phone for you, your employees and your children?

At the time of this publication at 2:36PM Fox News reporters in the field are reporting the biggest issue facing people is the communication breakdown. Even NBCNews was digging on twitter to find anything they could for news content.

It was also noted that two Nuclear Power plants where taken offline near the quakes. With Summer in full swing and brownouts not uncommon, it has to make you wonder what is your plan to keep the phones and tablets charged?

Perhaps it’s time for twitter accounts to have a dedicated plan for buildings and businesses to inform personal and employees about what is going on. It’s also not a bad idea to have a family plan to allow others to find out your OK.

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

The Power of Facebook Webinars

The Power of Facebook Webinars

Webinars are fast becoming a vital source of communication for a variety of different industry needs. Some examples of trending Webinar needs include:

  • Online Education
  • Business Meetings
  • Brainstorming Sessions

This is just the foundation for many of the ways that companies are currently utilizing Webinars. Most businesses and institutions have little choice these days but to look for more cost-efficient manners to carry out communications with a group who are not within affordable geographical reach. Company’s developed and deployed only online may also have serious outsourcing needs that can include vital training for their businesses. Even in a superb economy, having a face-to-face with online employees is an expenditure nightmare.

FBWebinars

As Facebook continues to step up their game in many areas, FBWebinars has added another element to the social networking giant that can provide business owners with a system that incorporates automated and recurring presentations, videos, webinars, and VSLs. Utilizing all of the viral aspects of Facebook, list building features make creating a FBWebinar a snap.

Currently still in their Pre-Launch phase, FBWebinars has an Alexa ranking of #61,602 with the larger part of its visitors coming in from the United States at 76% with a local traffic ranking of #15,661. Most users are males over the age of 35 with mid-level incomes.

What Can Users do with FBWebinars’ System?

With the FBWebinars system, users can promote any service, product, training or other webinar needs, as well as the products of any others, with their permission of course, or even create your own to promote many affiliate products or services.

Users on the basic account can add five custom webinars for their own products or services, and using pre-screened options do not count against your basic five.

The Future of Business and Educational Communications

Harnessing the educational or selling power of a webinar, with the mass marketing capabilities of Facebook certainly adds a few elements of ease to Webinar creation. Many users have already become loyal fans in just the short time FBWebinars has been in open beta. If your business or institution regularly relies on Webinars for communications, you may want to have a look at a review or two, do some research, and see if your webinar needs can be more efficiently met on the FBWebinar system.

With new updates popping off left and right, FBWebinar.com seems to be continually improving, at a rather fast rate. New methods such as the Viral Traffic Generation method and incentive programs are offering users innovations in Webinar technology previously unseen. You will not know until you investigate, but even without the impending updates, the current platform may be the perfect tool for your organization to launch products or services, create educational and training presentations, and improve your online marketing campaigns.

FBWebinar Updates

FBWebinars has already implemented a few new upgrades.

FBWebinars Incentives – This program will offer users a gift when they invite a designated number of friends to attend their webinar.

FBWebinars ‘Done for You’ – FBWebinars’ goal is to provide its users with a consistent stream of the newest and most profitable webinars with the highest conversion rates. Let FBWebinars help you to turn your webinars into sales, traffic, and a powerful tool for list building.

Click Here to get your account now!

Sources:

About Basil Puglisi

@BasilPuglisi is a Content Contributor and the Chairman of the Board for Digital Ethos. Basil C. Puglisi is also the Digital Marketing Manager for PMG Interactive. As the Digital Marketing Manager he provides oversight and support to Digital Campaigns, from Website Development to Search and Social Reach.

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