Check out Google’s VP of Search Product and User Experience at Google talk about the Future of Search during her recent visit to Israel.read more...
Check out Google’s VP of Search Product and User Experience at Google talk about the Future of Search during her recent visit to Israel.read more...
The web has been around for over 15 years and today a website is more than just an online brochure but an overall content hub for your customers. Research and “word of mouth” is done by visiting your website. Yet, design trends and need change all the times and something that was appropriate in 2008 may not be appropriate in August 2010. Something that was put together quickly but lacked strategy may also not be providing you the customers you need.
But when redesigning your website, there are a lot of considerations, including these seven tips for web design success.
Are tag clouds so good for SEO? Matt Cutts gives his opinion.
Mad Men may depict the ad world of the 1960s, but the lessons of this successful AMC show depicting the Madison Avenue world of 50 years ago still has a lot of relevance in today’s digital environment of 2010 and beyond.
While Don Draper barely respected the world of the television commercial and certainly couldn’t have imagined Wikipedia or Facebook, there is still a lot we can learn — including the mistakes — from the Sterling Cooper team.
Apologies but I can’t embed most clips that are on YouTube, so check out the links.
The phrase was introduced in Marshall McLuhan’s most widely known book, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, published in 1964. McLuhan proposes that a medium itself, not the content it carries, should be the focus of study. For example, McLuhan claimed in Understanding Media that all media have characteristics that engage the viewer in different ways; for instance, a passage in a book could be reread at will, but a movie had to be screened again in its entirety to study any individual part of it. So the medium through which a person encounters a particular piece of content would have an effect on the individual’s understanding of it.
6. Strategy is the strength. The core of marketing is still key — branding and positioning rule. Strategy matters. Social media requires more than just an ability to update a Facebook status or send a tweet. It requires an understanding of branding and strategy. The message still matters. Knowing your target audience is key — as clearly Don Draper gets it when he convinces a client that the ad agency gets it and Sterling Cooper’s strategy will lead to success – instead of the company’s initial ideas- in the clip here.
5. Write Well – Copy and creativity matter. The Sterling Cooper team turned the drab idea of the Kodak Slideshow – which defined a generation – into the iconic Kodak Carousel. The product was the same: a common slide projector. But would people have bought the Kodak Wheel? Probably not. The same product, but different branding and a different story: a product that defined a generation.
There will be a difference in the number of fans and attractors depending on what your brand’s name is, depending on what your website’s URL is, what your Facebook page is named or your twitter handle. What content you send out matters. Good writing matters and, yes, content is still king — just the definion of good content takes many more factors into account. It’s not about the product, it’s about the experience.
Don Draper turned a slide projector into an iconic moment in this clip.
4. Efficiency Matters because an Upstart is Around the Corner — While the Sterling Cooper is drinking all day, taking expensive vacations, and going to the upper-crust parties, someone is just around the corner, being more efficient, and out to get your business. Today that kind of waste doesn’t cut it. And while you were out drinking, someone else is coding today and developing the next startup. Do you want to remain relevant? Then stay on your toes.
3. It’s about feeling, not feature – Social is the first word in “social media.” The job title of the person in charge of implementing your brand’s presence on social networks is frequently referred to as “community management.” People need to feel a part of a community. They need to feel good about your brand. Your customers don’t care about your latest engineering feat or that your classes use video and audio. These are important things that may be needed in order to the end result but it won’t sell. Instead, people care about how it makes them feel. Peggy is right: “What we are selling is confidence, a better you.” It’s about feeling, not feature.
2. Change is Inevitable – It’s not by accident that Mad Men begins in the 1960s. The sexual revolution. The move from print to radio to television. The iconic role that television played during that generation in people’s experiences – from the Cuban Missile Crisis to the Vietnam War and the rise of feminism was a dramatic change. Bert Cooper started Sterling Cooper but he needed the younger Don Draper and Roger Sterling, Jr. (son of the co-founder, along with Bert, of Sterling Cooper) to continue it. Draper and Sterling then needed the younger team of Peggy and Pete and Harry to remain relevant and implement for the future. Draper and Sterling’s business acumen was much higher but they needed their younger and more inexperienced team to keep them relevant. Embrace change because it is today.
Embrace change and your younger team. If you want it to work, treat your younger team with respect, as Peggy explains in this clip.
1. Embrace New Technology – Today’s social media is yesterday’s TV. Yesterday’s TV is last week’s radio and newspaper.
Today’s new technology is tomorrow’s old technology. When Harry Crane decides that television is important, the team laughs at him. In the end, they make him the TV department — because they didn’t value TV. In the end, Harry is one of the most important members of the team. Do you have an intern or recent grad in charge of social media? What does that say about your priorities? Are you putting Harry Crane in charge of your most important department? In a few years, they’ll be the entire organization and the only one left.
Don Draper has descended - but still plays a role and is still the figurehead. But Harry Crane is the one that does the work and gets the job done.read more...
Karen Rubin of HubSpot has some great suggestions how to avoid one of her big LinkedIn pet peeves.read more...
GoogleWebmasterHelp answers the question: Will changing hosts hurt my search engine rankings?read more...
If you’re in the habit of following these things, you’ve by no doubt now read Dan Yoder’s 10 Reasons to Delete Your Facebook Account. I’ve seen it posted in six or seven places in just the past few hours. Unfortunately, it makes less and less sense every time I skim it. For the following reasons and for many others, I am not planning to delete my Facebook account:
Keeping in touch with Facebook
10. I moved from America to Israel in 2004, leaving behind my entire family and almost every friend I’d ever known. Though I didn’t get a Facebook account until 2005, I’ve been using it daily for the past five years to stay in touch with friends and relatives. Facebook makes it extremely inexpensive and highly efficient to get out important news about myself and to find out important news about other people with whom I never was very close. At the same time, it has never replaced traditional means of communication like telephone calls; nor should it.
Business networking with Facebook
9. LinkedIn is there and it does a fine job, but work is only one part of my life and there’s no chance for a prospective employer or client to get to know me by my LinkedIn page. I add my coworkers as Facebook friends and I’ll do the same for my clients. If they don’t accept me, I don’t mind at all, but I think they’ll want to get a better understanding of who I am and what I like, to the extent that information on Facebook supplements my real personality.
Photo sharing on Facebook
8. I understand that Facebook is now the world’s biggest photo-sharing site. There are others, like Flickr and Picasa, that have lots of features and are more professional, and more serious solutions like installing Gallery on your own domain. But for ease of tagging, getting photos to lots and lots of people – but not to random strangers – and sheer simplicity, sharing photos with Facebook makes perfect sense.
Connecting with new friends on Facebook
7. I can’t count the number of times I’ve been out and met someone or a few people, but only gotten first names. In the old days, meeting someone and speaking for a few minutes meant that I’d either have to ask for a telephone number to continue the conversation, with might seem a little too forward (and I don’t enjoy talking on the telephone very much) or attempting to follow up through a friend-of-a-friend, which could be cumbersome (I’ve never been comfortable meeting someone and then asking for an email address). It’s now extremely handy to use Facebook to connect with a new contact, even given just a first name and a mutual friend. This might be to continue a discussion about some interesting issue, to finish tagging a photo, to pass along information about a job or an apartment or just to stay in touch in the future. It’s clean, it’s easy and it works.
Using Facebook ads
6. Recently, while looking for an apartment in Tel Aviv, I used Facebook ads to get the word out and drive people to read my message that I was willing to pay a NIS 3500 finder’s fee for information leading to me renting an apartment. A very large percentage of the site’s traffic was generated by these Facebook ads, leading to several actionable tips. My somewhat creative use of Facebook ads was profiled in an article in TheMarker, the business section of Haaretz, but in fact I believe that I was using Facebook’s advertising platform in exactly the way it was designed and for exactly its purpose. Gone are the days when ad campaigns cost tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars just to plan and start. I set $10 daily limits for my ads and didn’t have any knowledge of the system beyond what’s available in Facebook’s own FAQs. It’s so easy to use Facebook ads, I could almost train my dog to use them.
Facebook’s privacy settings
5. Complaints about how Facebook sets up its privacy settings are a dime a dozen, but I challenge anyone to come up with another comparable web service that gives its users more powerful, granular control over their information than Facebook does. You can choose exactly who gets to see every little thing you do on Facebook or set global settings and just stick with them. True, they change their privacy options all the time and true, it gets pretty confusing, but it’s getting confusing because it’s getting more detailed and more complex, which is a good thing. And the bottom line is that no information is available about you that you don’t put on Facebook in the first place: if you want to have a profile with just your first name, last initial and favorite television shows, you can do that. This isn’t to say that privacy isn’t a big concern. It is, but it’s also crazy to complain that Facebook is spreading your information every which way if you don’t use Facebook’s own options to control who sees your information.
Remembering people’s details with Facebook
4. Whenever someone I know travels, I always ask for a postcard to add to my collection. “But what’s your address?” they always ask. And I always say: “It’s on my Facebook page.” When I meet someone who asks for my phone number, I could recite the ten digits or write them down, but it’s a hell of a lot easier just to give my Facebook username – which, conveniently, is the same as my first name. When someone wants to know my birthday to wish me a happy birthday – it’s there, and it even reminds my friends and family on Facebook when my birthday is approaching. I have a Birthdays calendar in iCal too, so I can see when important birthdays are coming… but there are hundreds more birthdays in my Facebook account.
Everyone is on Facebook
3. As often happens, Farhad Manjoo said it best: “There is no longer any good reason to avoid Facebook… it is now so widely trafficked that it’s fast becoming a routine aid to social interaction, like e-mail and antiperspirant [and mobile phones]… Facebook is now at that same point – whether or not you intend it, you’re saying something by staying away.” What does it say to me when I meet someone who doesn’t have Facebook? Something like: I don’t want to stay in touch with you. Or perhaps: Please leave me alone. Or even: Community is not important to me. These are perfectly valid sentiments, but if you do want to stay in touch, if you don’t want to be left alone, if communitydoes matter to you, then you’ll find a way to use the tool that’s expected of you.
Facebook gets better all the time
2. I’m actually ambivalent about Facebook’s progress and I include this one even though, while I think it’s true that Facebook does get better all the time, it also gets worse. I miss the days when Facebook was mainly about networks (and then groups) and I think becoming a “fan” of a “page” is lame, which is why I’ve never done it. I think most Facebook applications like the Farmville thing and the Mafia Wars thing are complete crap, which is why I’ve never used them (and why I’ve blocked them from spamming me). At the same time, Facebook’s integration with the wider web is very cool and opens up a lot of interesting possibilities – who knows, maybe one day Facebook will be the next Google, the first stop for people who want to find something on the internet. And where else on the internet do people join a site with their real names (first and last) and real pictures, one account per person? Facebook could be the long sought source for online micropayments, one-click identity verification without credit cards, etc, etc.
It’s a pain in the ass to quit Facebook
1. This is in response to Dan Yoder’s point three: “Facebook makes it incredibly difficult to truly delete your account.” It seems circular to me that it’s hard to close your Facebook account would be an argument for why you should close your Facebook account, but I understand that many people see it that way. Just ask yourself: is it really worth it? Facebook is entertaining, useful, efficient, free, generally a good idea to use and possibly will be even more essential in the future. If you don’t like making your information public, limit the amount of information you share. You don’t even have to give a real last name to use Facebook; you don’t have to use your normal email address; you don’t have to join your company’s network or accept your boss’s friend request. Is it really worth canceling your account for the vaguest and lamest reasons? Nope. Do yourself and everyone around you a favor and keep the damn account open.
Media and communication have undergone major changes in the past few years. Print is dying and even the old “bunny ears” analog television has officially died – thanks to the introduction of digital TV. But this is more about a platform than content. People are still reading newspapers and magazines — but online, requiring more frequent content and search engine optimization techniques to get found. People still watch television — but now the signal is digital and it might be TiVoed, OnDemand, on their iPad, iPod, iTunes, computer, or other portable device — and thus necessitating a change in advertising.
Bob Bowman recently spoke to Business Insider about the future of television.
One of the most important piece of advise that Bob Bowman gives is also what I have been advising clients: “Rather than fight it, accept it.” (7:30) This is the future. You don’t have to like it (I don’t always), but this is the way things are going and you can either choose to be a part of it, have a say and influence at times, or you will not remain relevant.
(By the way, as I write this post, I’m watching the NBC Nightly News – the day after it aired, from their podcast, on my laptop, and not my television. Not even in the same country that the show aired. This is the future of television).read more...
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