Sunday, February 19, 2012

It’s all about the content, baby!

When it comes to any sort of on-line marketing, it is all about content these days, not ads.  Especially when it comes to social media.  No one wants to subscribe to a stream or an email list that is nothing but ads.  One example, this morning I received emails from both Kodak and Canon. Kodak’s emails are generally a few ads and an article link.  Canon, just ads.  Guess which email I actually opened before trashing this morning?

This approach is discussed in Solis’ post:

EC=MC (Every Company is a Media Company), a movement to help businesses realize the opportunity presented by social for not only marketing, but true storytelling, experiential journeys, and engagement. Also referred to as brand journalism or brand publishing, the idea is that brands can earn greater attention, reach, and results by investing in a journalistic approach. It’s a move away from promotional content to the delivery of useful, entertaining, or meaningful engagement and experiences through new media.

How to tell the difference between content and advertising?  Canon directs me to sales promotions and advertising pages discussing the features of their new cameras, while Kodak points me towards an interview with a photographer discussing his early career and the techniques he uses to stand out from the crowd. 

Since I am not currently on the market for new gear, the Canon email does not really have much to offer me, while the Kodak link is one I plan on checking out later.  In this case, Kodak is succeeding in keeping me engaged with their brand, their content, and their site, while Canon is losing me.

So, later on, when I am in the market for new gear, who’s actual ads have a higher probability of hitting my eyeballs first?

Here is some recent content I spotted talking about, yep… content.  Some discussions on “contributing to signal instead of the noise.”

Report: Content and the New Marketing Equation - Brian Solis:

…when we look at the online and mobile behavior of connected customers, a sense of responsibility emerges as everyday people become media beacons in their own right. As such, they rigorously share and curate for their audience with an editorial-style approach as what was once a static audience is now an audience with an audience of audiences. People are learning that there are rewards for contributing to signal instead of the noise. Those who do not, learn the hard way…that people will disconnect in order to preserve the integrity of their stream.

Content Development That Gets Them Salivating | Inside The Mind Ep. 2 - YouTube:

…let's talk about the different types of content.

Lead Generation
Sales content

The next biggest mistake people make when using their blog as a marketing device is that they expect every piece to perform the function of all four of these types of content. And while there can sometimes be some cross over, this generally is not the case.

Google Keyword Tool: Click Here!

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from tag Interwebs

Friday, February 10, 2012

~37,195 Views Last Month: January 2012 Statistics Wrap-Up

Site Statistic Totals 2102012 24549 AM - chart

New Facebook pages, a few other changes…  Having trouble getting the monthly statistics I want from the new Facebook insights tool, but I will try to figure it out for next month.  I doubt the numbers are that dramatic at this point, anyway.

Running a bit late this month on the stats post, so some numbers may be a bit skewed, but who’s really counting anyway?  So, for most of these sites, the numbers reflect counts since my last stats post.

Site Statistic Totals 2102012 24831 AM - graph

The growth has leveled off a bit last month, but there were less posts last month than in a while.

Site Statistic Totals 2102012 25045 AM - monthly


December:    3,822
January:        4,209
Change:        +387
All Time:      19,514*

Democracy In Distress:

December:    5,945
January:        4,529
Change:        -1,416
All Time:       25,998*

Retrovirus Lab:

December:      1,363
January:          1,257
Change:           -106
All Time:        5,547**

Suburban Eschatology Part Two:

December:     255
January:        367
Change:         +112
All Time:        2,097**

All My Base Belong To You:

December: 120
January:     332
Change:     +212
All Time:    452

December:  4,631
January:      6,693
Change:      +2,062
All Time:      15,000******

December:  11,383
January:      12,182
Change:       +799
All Time:      42,799***

December:  7,546
January:      4,144
Change:      -3,402
All Time:      29,840****

Picasa Web Albums:

December:      741
January:          288
Change:          -453
All Time:         5,309*****


December:   314
January:       474
Change:      +160
All Time:      2,303

* Blogger has been keeping stats since May 2009, these blogs have been around much longer.  However, since they were essentially dormant until March 2011, they do reflect the activity on these blogs during their current, active incarnation.
** These blogs were created in August 2011.
*** Since August 2011, when I first started posting on this site.
**** I hate Photobucket and I rarely use it.  I believe 11,007 is the total since May, not March, since I had 10,909 hits on June 15.  I've arrived at this static by adding the monthly counts since June to 10,909, which is probably more accurate, but still leaves 15 days worth of hits unaccounted for.
***** I began recording statistics on Picasa in March, 2011. I was posting to the site earlier, but not by much, so this should be a fairly accurate statistic.
****** Joined October 2010, stats rounded to neared thousand starting January 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Three “Ps” of Identity: Presentation, Protection, & Preference (plus a look at Facebook profiles vs. pages)

Fabruary 6, 2012. 1.

Allison Cerra writing on Brian Solis’ blog.  I stole a decent chunk but the entire post is worth a read.

What’s Love Got to Do with It? The 3P’s of Identity - Brian Solis:

We visited with respondents in 30 homes across the country, observing them for hours in their natural habitats going about their ordinary day. We followed up with a quantitative study to more than 5,000 consumers across the US from teens to mid-lifers to isolate psychometrics, behaviors and values. Our goal was ambitious: How do the devices and networks connecting us each day affect our view of ourselves and those serving us?

To answer the question, we first had to understand how respondents view themselves in the networked world that keeps them connected. Through the research, we derived the 3P model of identity.

First, there’s presentation, which speaks to the image I attempt to reflect depending on my context. Before the days of devices connecting us in a 24×7 always-on world, life was simpler. Specifically, managing my image was simpler. My presentation at work may have been different from that at home, church, social gatherings or other venues. But, the networked community surrounding us demands a pervasive and constant reflection of who we are. And, I am no longer in control of how I appear, but anyone with an opportune cameraphone or texting fingers is capable of casting my image in the light they see fit.

Next, there’s protection, in which my worldview shapes what I choose to reveal or conceal about myself and loved ones. Protection-centric stories typically steal the headline of the day – whether it be in their scorn of companies that suffer security breaches or some other misstep in infringing customer privacy. Predictably, the public is fascinated with tales that expose how vulnerable we can be in the virtual world that surrounds us. Not all violations are created equal of course; an annoying spam message doesn’t carry the same consequence as a debilitating identity theft crime. In the protection realm, navigating the connected world requires an ability to discern innocuous from more harmful threats – despite not having our more primal, physical sensory capabilities to arm us in doing so.

Finally, preference is a psychological orientation toward targeted products, services and individuals. There is an abundance of choice in a hyper-connected world. Preference seekers long for the targeted offers or opportunities that appear just at precisely the moment they need them. Even better, these individuals crave personalized options that magically materialize even before a conscious need arises. In this space, the constellation of mouse clicks, channel changes and location updates presents a compelling view of who I actually am through my behaviors.

The 3 Ps exist in each of us simultaneously. While some of us may more psychometrically align with one P in particular, we make conscious and unconscious tradeoffs between all three multiple times each day. Should I post that picture about myself on my social networking page? It depends on how strongly I believe it aligns with a particular presentation important for the unique audience. Should I reveal my location to others through my social networking updates? It depends on how protective I am of leaking such information compared to how strongly I prefer a targeted interaction or service benefitting from the same. Should I opt-in to receive targeted advertisements? It depends on how certain I am that such personalized information will be used to help me, not harm me.

Another in a series of recent posts on Solis’ blog where he is presenting some very interesting metrics while not necessarily telling us how to apply them.  However, the application is fairly obvious with most of them.

This one, obviously, is a way to look at both how we present ourselves and how we  understand our customers.  In my particular case, my customers are the readers of my blogs and my followers on social media. What is suggested to me, though, is that how we present ourselves via these Three Ps will determine which customers engage with our content.  This is not a chicken and egg approach; here, A does come before B.

This is particularly interesting to me today.  Today I am  realigning how I present content on my Facebook profile and pages.  Before, I used my personal profile as a portal to the content I created, and then threw a bunch of links and images into the mix as well.  In many ways, this watered down my own content and much of it got lost in the torrent of information. 

But this was not the only drawback.  My two primary blogs are Rubble, which is primarily used to present my nature photography, and Democracy In Distress, which is primarily used to argue my political views.  Because of this, most of the content on my Facebook profile was links to artistic articles, photos, and videos, and links to political content centered around a center-left viewpoint.

I think the problem is pretty clear. 

There are not a lot of analytics available for personal profiles on Facebook.  I am pretty sure that I lost few “friends” after posting a picture of Mt.Hood, but I know I lost “friends” after posting too many anti-Republican articles in a row, some disagreeing with my politics, some because they just did not want any politics in their feed at all.  This was not the content they were interested in and my one or two photos a day were no match for the much more ubiquitous political postings when making a decision on whether or not to friend or un-friend me.

So I have a presentation issue affecting my online identity.  In my case, somehow I ended up gaining a pretty solid following around the politics, most of my followers, “friends,” who were not people I actually knew in the real world, were there for the politics, not for the photography.  My efforts in the artistic realm were being buried and lost in the flood of political material I was posting to keep the majority of my profile’s followers interested.

Presentation is not my only problem.  Because I have been using my personal profile as more of a page than a profile, I also have a protection issue.

With a page, the goal is to get as many followers as possible.  To get as many eyes on my content as possible.  I do not need to or even want to know all of them personally.  And with pages, this is fine.  However, when following this practice with my personal profile, this creates some problems.

Between friends on Facebook, some layers of protection are eliminated since we are supposed to be responsible for those layers of protection ourselves, not the site itself.  We are supposed to be vetting our friends, and once they get through our gate, they then have increased access to the profiles on our friends list.  Of course, every user can tweak their setting controlling the amount of access these friends of friends have to their own profiles, but the default settings are pretty open.

These friends of friends also can send messages to the people on our lists.  They can whether or not they are our friends, but with access to our lists they can also send messages such as, “Hey, since we both know that Litt guy, why don’t you check out my totally worthless spam and my potentially hazardous link?  You know Litt wouldn’t lead you astray, right?”

No, I wouldn’t.  Intentionally.  Especially if I am using my profile correctly.  However, using it as a page, while trying to vet most of my followers to some degree, some bad seeds do slip through since I am inclined to give the benefit of the doubt to new contacts.

This happened to me recently, and it was the final factor leading up to the changes I am implementing today.

After a couple weeks of warning, I am moving the majority of the political content to a page for the Democracy In Distress blog.  This is certain.  I am, for now, also moving the photography to my new A. F. Litt page (as opposed to my personal profile).  This way, those who do not care for the political content can enjoy the photography, and those who enjoy the politics can be spared the landscapes pictures, etc. if they wish. 

It streamlines and clarifies my presentation, targets my specific followers better, and it creates a more secure environment for my existing friends while still allowing me to purse new, unvented followers.

Unfortunately, it is not a win-win scenario.  In Game Theory, it is a non-zero sum scenario.

Overall, I may not lose any followers or friends, but I will, hopefully only for the short term, be sacrificing click throughs to my blogs and other online accounts.  My Facebook profile is my second largest traffic source behind Google Search, with and Pinterest coming in third.

By not posting these links on my profile, I could be reducing my traffic by quite a bit (not to mention killing my Klout score!), but I do not want to flood my friends’ feeds with multiple posts of identical links.  Already, my most dedicated followers have “liked” the pages they are interested in, and hopefully, overtime, the new pages will build the following my profile has.

Because of this, these changes were not the easiest choices to make.  There were some difficult decisions involved.  But it is better to do this when I am approaching 600 followers instead of approaching 5000 followers. 

If I could go back and do this all over again, I would have created these pages as soon as I revived the Rubble and Democracy In Distress sites last year.  In the future, putting together a social media marketing campaign, there would be no question of this.

However, there was not a lot of planning going on last year as my blogs slowly came back to life.  I was posting here and there for the fun of it and the idea that I would start getting the traffic on these blogs that I am never crossed my mind.  By the time I realized that things were taking off I was just rolling with it.  Only over the last few months have I sat down and tried to bring some order to the chaos.

The fact that I would need to migrate my content to pages was obvious then.  The only question was when.  Now, or wait until my friends list reached its upper limit?  The protection factor was the deciding factor in making this change now.  Also, I’ve seen too many people trapped with having to maintain identical content on two different pages/profiles – profile content for their first 5000 followers and page content for everyone who came along later. 

Another trap I’ve noticed is accounts with 5000 friends on the profile and nine followers of the page. 

By making this change now I hope to avoid both of those problems in the future.

Really, what I am doing on Facebook is no different that what I did with my blogs last year, I sorted the content by subject matter, knowing that some people would be interesting in certain topics more than others.  While with the RubbleSites, this has led to five different blogs (Arts & Sciences, Music, Politics, Tech & New Media, and Family Life & Parenting), I am breaking these five down into three pages on Facebook: Music (Retrovirus Lab), Politics, and everything else, with the everything else being split between my personal Page and Profile depending on the content’s presentation and protection factors.   

I will depart with humor.  This was spotted by Kelly Rossi on Facebook earlier.

I like the last one.  I still haven’t figured out why G+ is worth my time, other than maintaining some place holders just in case it takes off in the future.

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Friday, February 3, 2012

Airplane Caught on Google Earth

Note: Cross posted from Rubble.



This is pretty cool…  On the 2010 image just down the road from us.

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Old Post Migration (Part One)

February 3, 2012. 2.

I created this blog in December because most of the recent posts at the time on Suburban Eschatology Part Two were tech posts.  I realized that the old blog was in danger of turning into a tech blog.  However, there were so many of these posts that I decided a tech blog was not a bad idea.

So I’ve spent some time today migrating the first batch (about half) of those posts over here from SE2.  I tagged them, slapped on a crappy little graphic, and plopped them down here.  Later, I may go through and post them to the actual dates they were created on, but since they are all still fairly current, I probably will just let them stay where they are…

That is all.  Just a quick bookkeeping note.

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Facebook "Wall of Shame", a handy chart via Mashable

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


February 3, 2012. 1.

Fun with everyone's favorite social network...

Facebook FAIL: Missteps and Shortcomings Revealed [INFOGRAPHIC]:
Facebook’s gone through some profound changes lately, which is exciting to us, but leaves others in a profound state of anger and frustration. Like it or not, all is not perfect with the world’s largest social network, and here’s an infographic by a company that’s more than happy to point out Facebook’s shortcomings.
The “Facebook Wall of Shame” was created by WordStream, Inc., a provider of search marketing software and services...
This hard-hitting infographic smackdown that reveals what WordStream calls “Facebook’s errors in judgment."
'via Blog this'

Click on the article link above for the best view:

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How To Lead Clever People (Forbes India Magazine)

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


February 3, 2012. 1.

Forbes India Magazine - How To Lead Clever People:

Clever people are employees whose skills are not easily replicated and who add disproportionate value to their organizations. Often, these people are smarter than their bosses and most of them don’t really want to be ‘led’. That’s what they say, anyway; whether or not they mean it is another question. The ones we studied for our book actually needed organizations in order to express their skills and talents.

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How the Remote Workforce Is Changing

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


February 3, 2012. 1.

Spotted this on Mashable this morning...  Worth a read, some excerpts below...

How the Remote Workforce Is Changing:
While once working from home was considered a bit of a novelty, we argue that it is now so mainstream it’s more interesting to consider how the remote workforce is changing.


“For the longest time, remote working was regarded as a pipedream. As its acceptance slowly built, companies started to see some benefit in reduced costs, but it was probably done more to appease employees and retain someone who might have otherwise left. In 2011, remote working has become ‘mainstream,’” says Michael D. Haberman, SPHR, VP & director of HR services at Omega HR Solutions.


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The History of Digital Storage [INFOGRAPHIC]

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


February 3, 2012. 1.

The History of Digital Storage [INFOGRAPHIC]:

The whirring hard drives that once occupied entire university labs held but a fraction of the data we carry in our pockets every day — and that’s only 50 years of progress.

Today, as we move further into the cloud, and witness the latest and greatest pocket media devices, we thought it fitting to take a look back at how far we’ve come on our quest to store as much information in as little space as possible.

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LinkedIn Lets Companies Post Status Updates [VIDEO]

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


LinkedIn Lets Companies Post Status Updates [VIDEO]:

LinkedIn has long let users follow companies, but Thursday the professional networking service is finally allowing the more than two million businesses with company pages to post status updates to their followers.

Company Status Updates will enable assigned administrators of company pages to post updates, up to 500 characters in length, to the “Overview” tab of their pages.

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Find a Job in Social Media, Communications or Design

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


February 3, 2012. 1.

Find a Job in Social Media, Communications or Design:

If you’re seeking a job in social media, we’d like to help out. For starters, Mashable‘s Job Lists gather all our resource lists, how-tos and expert guides to help you get hired. In particular, you might want to see our articles, How to Leverage Social Media for Career Success and How to Find a Job on Twitter.

But we’d like to help in a more direct way, too. Mashable‘s job boards are a place for socially savvy companies to find people like you. This week and every week, Mashable features its coveted job board listings for a variety of positions on the web, social media space and beyond. Have a look at what’s good and new on our job boards:


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Facebook 101 [COMIC]

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


Facebook 101 [COMIC]:

There are some people who think Facebook has become too complicated. There are other people who agree with those people.

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Tips for landing a cherry tech position

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


Found this on Mashable...  I'd prefer to work in high tech manufacturing, my preferred area.  But, I'll write for anyone!  This chart is geared more towards the hard core programmers, not the English majors who happened to grow up and start their careers in Seattle, like me, and who, inevitably because of the time and place, landed in that industry off and on over the years.  And it looks like moving north, south, or east from Oregon would be a good idea for landing one of these types of jobs.

Hot Tips For Landing Jobs at Google, Apple and Facebook [INFOGRAPHIC]:

Google, Apple and Facebook are the tech trifecta, so we found facts that could help you land a job at one of these companies. No doubt, there will be stiff competition: Nearly one in four young professionals wants to work at Google, for instance, but there’s more room in the Googleplex for software developers. Facebook gets 250,000 applications a year and sifts through them to find the cream of the crop, preferring those who build things, whether they’re apps or organizations. And Apple wants, well, Apple fanboys to help create the next generation of gadgetry, but you ought to have a reference from an existing Appler.

Tech Job

Created by: Masters Degree


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LinkedIn to what?

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


While I've never done much with my LinkedIn account, Stewart seems to nail it pretty well. I follow the feed on my home page and there does not seem to be much going on outside of people connecting with other people.

But I don't know. When I start actively searching for a new writing contract here in a month or so, I suppose I'll find out what LinkedIn is worth.
Indecision 2012 - Meet the Prez - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart - 09/27/11 - Video Clip | Comedy Central:


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Yes, I am still anti-Facebook for kids...

February 3, 2012. 1.

Originally posted on Live Journal: Suburban Eschatology Part Two (September 12, 2011, 9:56 PM)

I am not a fan of kids on social media.  Teens, sure, but under thirteen seems a bit much.  My son would love a Facebook account, but I do not think he is ready.  On top of this, he spent so much time on the computer over the last year, without access to any real social networking,  that I had to take him into the doctor to have his carpal tunnel symptoms looked at this afternoon.

Anyway, here is yet another reason why kids and social networking services are a bad idea... 

Apps, social networks pose new threat to kids  By Byron Acohido, USA TODAY

There is a rising threat to kids who habituate the Internet: the likelihood that a popular mobile app or social-networking service will invade their privacy.

The Federal Trade Commission last month announced a $50,000 settlement with app maker W3 Innovations for collecting and dispersing information of kids under 13 in violation of the Children's Online Privacy and Protection Act, or COPPA.


A recent survey by anti-virus firm AVG found roughly half of children ages 6 through 9 regularly interact with friends online, yet 58% of their parents admitted to not being knowledgeable about social networks.


"The risks to children from social networking at an early age are numerous," Lavy says. "As pedophiles become more technologically sophisticated, they're able to find and connect with kids easier than with previous methods."

More time spent online also means higher risk of children getting exposed to inappropriate content and advertising. Identity thieves target minors' names and Social Security numbers to create bogus credit accounts with a lower likelihood of getting discovered.

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Top 10 Features Users Want From Google+ Brand Pages:

Note: Cross posted from Suburban Eschatology Part Two.


From 2011-11 (Nov)

Top 10 Features Users Want From Google+ Brand Pages:
It’s still too early to tell what will come from the recently launched Google+ brand pages.

We asked our followers what they hope to see added in the future, and after reading hundreds of comments, the key things appear to be multiple administrators, app integration and more customization.
'via Blog this'

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Enforcing online privacy with SafeShepherd


The Seven Most Interesting Startups At 500 Startups Demo Day | TechCrunch:

SafeShepherd logs who is tracking your data (like browser cookies) across the web and then acts like an intermediary, asking them to remove it from their database — Saving you hassle at the least. Hence the name.

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