Archive for October, 2010

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The Three Whys

October 13, 2010

In my workshops, I often talk about “The Three Whys”:

1.       Why Do People Come to Your Site?

2.       Why Do They Stay? ….and….

3.       Why Do They Come Back?

These three questions apply to your web site, your blog, your tweets, your Facebook updates & pages, etc.  In other words, anywhere that people encounter you either in real life (IRL) or virtually on the web, you need to think about these questions.  The answer to all three of these questions is basically the same, compelling content.

So the next questions is: “What makes compelling content?”.

This depends on several factors:

  • What are you trying to accomplish?
    Only you can answer that question.  Some people just want to get their name out there.  Other people want to entertain.  Still others want to share information about something connected to their business or profession.  I could continue to list people’s goals forever.  Let it suffice you need to start with what is your goal?
  • Who is your target audience?
    What might be interesting to some may not be interesting to others.  You need to be sensitive to the interests and needs of your followers, connections, fans, etc.  If you are in the food industry, people might want to hear about recipes and special deals at your establishment.  However, if you are in the debt relief field, people might want to know what they can do to improve their credit rating.  Your content needs to be compelling and helpful to the people who are your target customers or employers.
  • Who are you?
    Social media, social networking and social marketing have one word in common “social”.  This means you also need to be who you are and let people in to get to know you.  People are genuinely more interested in people they KNOW, LIKE and TRUST so a bit of personal communications lets people get to know you.  Be true to yourself so that people will get to KNOW, LIKE and TRUST the real you.
  • Keep your content fresh and relevant.
    If you only update your website, profile, blog, etc from time to time, there is no reason to return to your website, blog, profile, etc.  The search engines will see no reason to read your content and neither will anyone else.  So you need to post new content on a regular basis so that people will want to return or follow you to see new thing you have said.  The answer to “How often should I update my …?” is it depends on what the medium is.  Since social media is all about the conversation, you need to pay attention to the conversations every day.  However, you might get away with adding new content to your website less frequently.  The tool determines the “How often?”.

The next time you tweet, update your status, blog, add more content to your website, think about “The Three Whys”.  In other words, put yourself in the shoes of your target audience and reach out to meet their needs and interests.  Make your content appealing to those that will read your updates, tweets, blogs, etc.

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The Social Network – Just My Opinion

October 11, 2010

I have to preface this by saying I am not a reviewer.

This weekend I saw ‘The Social Network’ and I enjoyed it.  Of course, they had to take dramatic license – technical geeks are pretty boring to most people so adding a bit of drama makes the movie more appealing to the masses… Funny, isn’t that how Facebook evolved …adding to make it more appealing to the masses.

I have evolved through the technology ranks so I found the main characters to be pretty close to my experience of people I have worked with and encountered in the technical fields.  I often say “programmers grow best in the dark like mushrooms”.  We love the challenge of communicating with our computer, but many of us lack the social tact to communicate in a non-offensive way with others even though we are really nice people.  Thus, I found Jesse Eisenberg’s portral of Mark Zuckerberg to be reminiscent of many of the really bright techies I have encountered.

For some odd reason, really bright people always seem to have one person that sees past the awkward social skills to the nice person inside.  This is usually the best friend and I think Andrew Garfield did a great job of showing how Eduardo Saverin was really most interested in protecting his buddy.  He felt betrayed because his buddy got taken down a path without him.

So who do I consider to be the villain – Sean Parker.  There are always people that want to hang on the shirt tails of someone that has a good idea.  I think Justin Timberlake did a fabulous job of showing how these types show two sides, good & bad.  These people have to appear good on the outside which is necessary for them to get the trust and then take advantage of people.  I have run into a lot of people that are out for themselves first and thus tend to walk over others.

The Winklevoss twins had a good idea, but it was after all, just an idea. It was Mark Zuckerberg who coded and implemented the solution. Throughout history, people have had great ideas, but the credit always goes to the one(s) that actually do it.

So my overall review is that I found the movie to have elements of truth when it comes to how new software solutions are brought to market and as I said, of course, they took some dramatic license.   At the end of the movie, I had a sense of sorrow for Mark Zuckerberg because he is a lonely figure, but not so long ago so was….Bill Gates, Thomas Edison, etc.