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Thursday, 08 November 2012 08:21

The sunny side

When I have downtime, I troll the interwebs where I am involved (in the virtual sense) with a couple of multiples groups online. I've made long-distance friends with several moms of multiples, and we trade tips, ask advice and even swap items (I totally nailed a great deal on a triplet stroller just last week solid).

But one of my friends recently posted about how someone called her fake for posting cute pictures and happy status updates about her life. The notion that someone's life is supposed to precisely mirror their Facebook statuses seems weird to me. With very few exceptions, I don't post pictures of my kids screaming or crying, I don't post pictures of myself looking like a hot mess, I keep my whiny status updates to a minimum (this is subject to debate, I'm sure), and to the untrained eye it may appear that I am just breezing through raising three kids while seamlessly maintaining a job and household. Let me just say, ha!

Published in Edge Staff Mom
Wednesday, 08 August 2012 17:11

You're NOT on Facebook!?

The looks from my friends sitting around the table were of shock, wonder and a little jealousy as my 40-something friend (we'll call him Jim) confessed to a group of my friends that he is not on Facebook. 'What?' 'You're not in Facebook?' 'Are you serious?' 'Are you OK?' 'How do you do it?' 'How are we supposed to stalk you?' 'How can we tag you in this pic we just took of you?' 'I often wish I wasn't either!' These were just some of the reactions he received when he admitted this in public. The funny thing is that my friend seems to be pretty well adjusted, social, busy, successful and active in spite of the fact that he doesn't spend time on Facebook. Or perhaps he's that way precisely because he doesn't spend time on Facebook. I'll let you ponder that.

Jim, myself and the rest of the group at the table are all busy professionals, business owners, parents, wives, husbands, active in our communities - and we're (mostly) all on Facebook. I like being there. I've found it to be a very useful and fun tool to stay in touch with my friends and family both near and far, and it's a useful tool to promote a business. But there are times when I long for the days before social media - the days when we only knew what was going in the lives of others by actually seeing them, calling them or writing to them.

Published in Local Business
Wednesday, 01 August 2012 16:33

Facebook's stock sinks, so who should buy it?

NEW YORK - Investors are dumping Facebook's stock, spooked by slowing revenue growth, the lack of a financial outlook and plans to spend more money in the coming months.

Are they right?

Only if they are thinking in the short term. Investors can expect Facebook's stock to be volatile for a few years. But analysts say those willing to wait will likely be rewarded someday.

'I view it as a tomorrow stock,' says Christian Bertelsen, chief investment officer at wealth management firm Global Financial Private Capital.

Published in Tekk
Wednesday, 30 May 2012 14:35

Do Facebook Ads Work?

The short answer: Yes and no. To many marketers, Facebook advertising is a challenge. Most brands want to maintain contact with their target audience globally, using the most widely-adopted social network - but doing so is more complicated than it first seems. The truth is that most marketers haven't yet been able to prove the success of their Facebook advertising campaigns through verifiable conversion rates, but rather only through an increase in their fan base on the platform.

According to an article written by Ben Bunz of BusinessWeek, Facebook 'likes' have become a devalued currency. 'Liking [has become] as common as blinking, and a like' no longer signals that a consumer loves your brand,' said Bunz. Most organizations do not experience interaction with all of their fans; in fact, most fan interaction is at the other end of the spectrum, averaging less than 1 percent per day.

It's hard to convince business owners and marketers to continue to invest money into Facebook advertising, as they haven't yet been able to reap the fruits of their past investments on the platform. One striking example was the recent announcement that GM is going to withdraw its $10M Facebook advertising budget this year. Why? Among many reasons, including budget cuts, there is a simple one: Facebook hasn't been able to prove that their ads work.

Published in The Marketing Edge
Thursday, 24 May 2012 12:58

Social Networking's Quiet Curse

Quietly cursing at social networking

In the dark, quiet days of the beginning of the 21st century, there were many places to express yourself on the interwebs. These ancient relics, some still in view today, were known as 'blogs.' These grammatical punching bags offered a way relieve the stress from the everyday grind. Hidden behind anonymity, we could unleash a torrent of vitriol and suppressed thoughts, relieving stress and making our opinion known to all. Problem is, you needed the exact address to get to these blogs, making it a little harder for prying eyes to find.

Enter Myspace.

While not the first social networking site to come along, it was the first one to reach mythic proportions of popularity. MySpace offered a way to connect you with all of your friends by name, so you suddenly had an audience with which to share the thoughts you generally hid throughout the day. Problem is, now people knew exactly what you thought of them after you'd been far too nice to them. Your anonymity couldn't save you from being labeled a hypocrite.

Then we all found Facebook.

Published in Tekk
Thursday, 26 April 2012 10:28

Clean up your 'house' if you want that job!

It was about this time back in the '80s when I began really stressing about finding a job after college. I put together my first resume and mailed it out to prospective employers hoping to be asked for an interview. If I landed an interview and did well, they would begin the process of checking references and vetting me for the job. How times have changed! Today employers are checking you out before they even invite you in for the interview. Many interviews never happen because of what employers learn about you with you ever knowing it. Behold the age of the internet! Thankfully, like bad 'Tony' perms in the '80s (yes, I had one), the days of mailing out resumes as our primary means for finding a job are over.

This is both good news and bad news for job seekers, whether you're about to seek out your first job after graduation or you're looking for a new job. Here are ways to use the internet to gain an advantage in your job search.

Published in Local Business

In today's increasingly social media-driven world, user endorsement is key. Sure, a well-targeted and attractive advertising campaign can increase your brand's exposure and promote growth, but nothing inspires action in a person as well as an endorsement from their friends, family or co-workers. In fact, it's one of the primary ways people differentiate between truly valuable content and spam in an online realm that has become saturated with promotions, promises and often-desperate sales pitches. This is the principle behind viral marketing and business growth: Users share content through social networks and content aggregators, and that content becomes popular because of already-established trust between the people sharing and the people seeing what their friends have shared.

Facebook, understanding that user-driven connections have the potential to produce more successful advertising campaigns (and therefore happier advertising customers) than general targeted ads, expanded its feature set to include what they call Sponsored Stories. But how do they work? How can you best use them to promote your brand? In order to answer those questions, we need to take a look at the four types of Sponsored Stories Facebook offers: Domain, Page Like, Page Post, and Check-In stories.

Domain Stories are intended to drive traffic to your business's website. When a user is logged into Facebook, visits your website, and 'likes' it, Facebook generates a sponsored news feed (or sidebar) story announcing the 'like.' Because Domain Stories take users directly to your website, they are a great way to boost online sales and generate leads.

Published in The Marketing Edge
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