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HOW TO: Back Up Your Social Media Presence Before the Ball Drops

I found this article on http://mashable.com/2010/12/28/back-up-social-media/ and thought it would be great to share!

Remember how we were all freaking out on New Year’s Eve, 1999, convinced that the world as we know it would end — at the hands of machines, of course? Well, we weathered that storm and then some. Still, as we shamble forward into the next decade, it might be prudent to take pause and take stock of the years behind us. Translation: Back up your stuff.

Think of it as stockpiling food and building a fallout shelter for the 21st century. We have a ton of information, photos and memories scattered around the web that we would be loathe to lose, and while it’s unlikely that the entire Internet is going to come crashing down in the next week or so, it still might be wise to put some of that stuff in an iron box for safe keeping. 

Read on, and Christina Warren and I will show you how to… 


… Back Up Your Facebook


 

We’re coming pretty close to living our lives on Facebook — it’s our photo album, diary and mailbox, all in one — so why leave all that info up to the whims of the all-mighty servers? This October, the social network got hip to data portability after it started allowing users to download their profiles — photos, statues, updates, videos and all. 

The process is really too simple to forgo. Here’s how you can stow away your social life for safekeeping: 1). Go to Account Settings, 2). Click on “Download Your Information” and allow Facebook to download your info, 3). Wait for an e-mail that will let you know your info is ready (it takes a while, what with all the stuff you probably have on Facebook), 4). Go through the security test that allows you to download your info (kudos on that one, Facebook), and, voila, your profile is ported to your desktop in a nifty folder. Do this before you go through with that New Year’s resolution to make your profile less scandalous — you know, for when you’re old and gray and full of sleep and nodding by the fire. 


… Back Up Your Tweets


 

Yes, the Library of Congress is now hoarding tweets, but that doesn’t do much for the casual user looking to keep a log of his own mundane musings, now does it? 

Thankfully, you’re got some options. There’s TweetStream, which lets you back up your data as well as mine it for information and statistics. (Be warned, this service takes a looooong time to gather your info). 

And if TweetStream doesn’t strike your fancy, TweetScan, a site we covered back in 2009, will track your data back to 2007, and, using OAuth, will even grab your timeline, tweets from friends and direct messages. 

Pinboard, a paid, Delicious-like (RIP) tool, also lets you store your tweets — you can also back up or archive tweets from other usernames or from hashtags, as well as add favorites from a username and turn links embedded in tweets into bookmarks. 

 


… Back Up Your Blog


 

After Tumblr’s epic outage the other week, we showed you all how to back up your blogs. Well, we’re just going to reiterate that right now, along with some solutions for WordPress as well. Remember how you felt when your mom threw away all your old journals, crammed to the margins with angsty poetry? Well, that’s not a feeling one would like to replicate later in life (unless it was relief — in which case, disregard). 


Tumblr


Last year, Tumblr launched a backup app that allows users to save their blogs so that they can be viewed on any computer, burned to a CD or hosted as an archive of static HTML files. The app is super easy to use: Simply download, enter your Tumblr sign-in info and save your blog to your desktop (it looks like the below screenshot). You can launch the app and backup more info every time you post as well. 

Note, this app is only for Mac OS X (10.5 or higher), but there are other options for those who use different operating systems. 


WordPress


 

If your blog or website uses WordPress, grabbing a backup file of all your posts, pages and comments is easy. In the WordPress dashboard, just go to Tools, Export and choose what types of posts you want to export. 

If you want a backup of your entire WordPress database, the excellent WP-DB-Backup plugin can make scheduled database backups for your WordPress site at intervals you choose and even e-mail you the backup file. 


… Back Up Your Photos


 

If you’re like millions of Internet users, you probably upload most of your photos to a photo-sharing site like Flickr or Facebook. While you’re backing up your blog entries, tweets and Facebook messages, it might be a good idea to go ahead and archive all of your photos, too. If nothing else, this is a great way to destroy the evidence from that sorority beer bong tournament in college. 

Flickr is a great service and in terms of reliability, it’s consistently solid. What’s less consistent is the whims of its parent company, Yahoo. If the Delicious debacle has taught us anything, it’s that Yahoo isn’t afraid to sell off or shut down a service with millions of daily users. 

Lots of apps and tools let you back up your Flickr photo stream, but a quick, fuss-free way to unload years of photo uploads is the Adobe Air app Flump. The app works on Mac, Windows and Linux and downloads a copy of each photo in your stream to a folder of your choice. 

Be aware that while this will grab each and every photo, tags, titles and photo sets are not preserved. There a few other alternatives if you’re willing to invest more time in the process, but Flump gets the job done.

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The Benefits of Social Media for Small Businesses

I found this blog on http://socialmediatrader.com/social-media-marketing-for-small-businesses/ and wanted to share it!

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There is no denying that Social Media websites have made  huge strides on the web. The immense number of people who participate in social media websites has led to increased investment in the growing field of social media marketing. As we see a rapidly growing number of small businesses include social media ideas and strategies in their goals, we will look at exactly what a social media marketing campaign means and where the benefits are for small business owners.

If you’ve not been living under a rock for the past couple of years, you’ve probably heard about sites, such as, Facebook, Myspace and Youtube. It seems that many small businesses have embraced these sites and have diligently filled out their profile pages and waited (and waited and waited) for a rush of traffic and new business to arrive.Despite what you may hear, there is no “silver bullet”. If you want to attract new visitors to your site then you have to actually participate and become involved in a community.

There are also social news websites, such as, Digg and StumbleUpon that have the potential to send up to 40k unique visitors to your website in a short space of time as well as a good number of backlinks if you manage to reach the front page. If you don’t get your story to the front page, then you are unlikely to see much more than a handful of visitors.

Social Media Marketing(SMM) is the practice of creating compelling content from a marketing angle. SMM general happens off your website, and the best example of it is on Social News and Bookmark sites. Social media marketing can help to grow a website very quickly under the right conditions.

Benefits of a Social Media Marketing

More online conversations about your brand
A successful Social Media Marketing campaign leads to a lot more talk about your brand online. When your message works with your users, they will spread your message more effectively than tradition methods.

Quick turnaround
Hitting a front page of major social video, news and bookmark sites will send you huge amounts traffic and almost instantly. This doesn’t mean the traffic will equate to conversions, but it should generate momentum in the right direction.

Low costs
A comprehensive SMM strategy may provide a partial or full replacement of traditional advertising and marketing at a fraction of the costs.

Impact on search engine rankings
SMM campaigns bring you large amounts of backlinks that benefit your ranking in search engines.

Compatible with traditional Marketing
No one says you have to approach and embrace SMM full on. SMM campaigns can be run along side traditional marketing and advertising.

The power of recommendation
Would you rather buy from a faceless company or from a company that people recommend? We know that initiators and influencers play an important role the buying process and you can reach these people with SMM.

Sidestepping ad blindness
Traditional online advertising methods, such as, banner ads are seeing drops in the level of their effectiveness. As ad blindness increases, social media marketing has the potential to send visitors to your website without traditional advertising methods.

Things to consider

Social Media Marketing can be unpredictable if sufficient planning has not been made. Consider the following points for any SMM campaign.

Target audience
Having a general idea of what your customers want is not enough for effective SMM. You should define in detail who your target audience is, what is it that they want, and how you offer content of value that is most relevant for their needs.

Once you identify your target audience, you will be able to focus on what they have in common and crafting a strategy to draw in more of the same people.

Length of campaign
Although you may see traffic relatively quickly, it is important to note that a for real success in SMM, you must think and plan long term. It may be more damaging to abruptly end conversations with your customers than to never start one in the first place. Know your time scale objectives and work towards them.

Strength of product
Consider that your products or service will be exposed to a huge amount of potential customers almost instant; Are you confident in the strength of your product? It is imperative to understand that you will be under scrutiny and having a product or service which just isn’t strong enough can have very negative side effects. If your product or services do not perform well, then maybe you need to re-evaluate your target and or the viability or appeal of your product.

Time constraints
Obviously, with any small business, time is an important factor. Depending on what your product or service is you may find it more efficient to allocate a larger portion of time on a few targeted sites rather than spreading yourself too thinly across multiple sites.

A definition of success
You must set short term, medium term and long term targets for you campaigns. Without clear goals and objectives, your campaigns will fail.

Here are a just a few examples of what success might look like:

  • Reducing costs for achieving the same targets
  • Gaining a better understanding of your customers
  • Increase brand exposure in ways which were not possible before
  • Increase Sales and Conversions

Tips on Running a Successful Campaign

Two way conversations
You must listen and respond to your customers. This is not like setting up a poll on your site. Having conversations which flow in both directions help you understand the concerns of your customers, why they exist and what you can do to fix them.

The personal touch
Automated responses and standard letters are a great way to sabotage your SMM campaign. social media is about equal conversations and recommendation. Just think, would you rather purchase a new camera from a friend who recommends it or an automated newsletter?

Transparency
Be transparent, be honest. There are many compelling ways to raising awareness for your company. Having hidden agendas or stretching the truth will simply backfire.

Be a part of the community
Acknowledge others in the community which offer value to your business. Take some time to really be a part of the community and share useful knowledge. Personality goes a long way. It’s a bit like making friends; you have give a little to receive. You never know, you may build useful networks that extend offline. If you begin your campaign pushing only your content and disregarding the community, you will be dead on arrival.

A successful Social Media campaign can prove to be one of the key catalysts in growth for a small to medium sized business. It can increase brand exposure and PR for a fraction of traditional advertising costs and effort, as well as provide large scale market research and product refinement ideas at no extra charge.

Soon, SMM will join SEO as being important aspects of any site owner’s marketing strategy. The speed in which trends evolve on the internet is can often be daunting, but SMM by large companies can be emulated in whole or in part even by very small businesses. It’s not the money. It’s the content marketing mindset that separates success and failure. Big ideas can beat big budgets.

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Did You Know . . .

    * 62% of people on Social Networks are 25-54 years old?

    * There are over 250 million people that get onto Facebook every day!

    * 4.77 billion followers on Twitter

    * 30.5 million Twitter profiles

    * Each contact you have on your email list can be worth $948 to YOU over the course of a year

    * Studies have shown that the 80/20 rule works, Qwest if they only take care of 20% of the complaints every day that their business will increase 80%

    * People have to “Imprint” you and your info within 48 hours in order to remember who you are and what you do

    * It takes a minimum of 7 times to tell someone who you are and what you do before they remember you and can do business with you

    * It takes at least 21 days or 21 times to create a new habit

    * The average person knows 250 people on a personal level

    * The average small business has worked with over 300 clients

    These are a few things I picked up today, some I already knew and some I did not. Hope you found this interesting!

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    What to do with Facebook

    Facebook is about building relationships and building community. When you create your Facebook Business page it is NOT for selling it is to educate people on your industry and to help them in their business. It is to share why you are so passionate about your work and what you love to do.

    Here are 5 steps to follow that will increase your return on Facebook for FREE!

    1)      You want to brand yourself on Facebook, people will do business with you when they know, like, and trust you. It does not matter what “Company” you are with it is about your personality, your enthusiasm, your authentic self. You want to share your niche!

    2)      When posting on your business page you want to have valuable content. When you are writing your blogs use those as content to share on Facebook, talk about tips people can use, think about what your niche market is looking for on Google and write about that.

    3)      The goal with social media both Facebook and Twitter you want to build a targeted following. In my opinion it is not about the quantity of fans or followers it is the quality. I want people to “Like” my page and follow me because they want to hear what I have to say and may even want to do business with me. When you are writing your blogs be sure to share them to Facebook and Twitter and also have your links on your blog so those people that read your blog can also “like” your page and follow you.

    4)      Ask for syndication from people. Once you have built the relationships with people ask them to share your blogs, posts, tweets etc. That way there is more than just YOU promoting YOUR business. Remember you want to do this for people as well. If you have great power partners make sure you are sharing their stuff. Now one thing with syndication make sure it is within your industry and makes sense, what I mean is I do Internet Marketing so I am not going to promote jewelry or make-up on my business page. I can share it with my personal friends but not with business people make sense?

    5)      Last but not least, ALL traffic points back to your blog. Your blog is your hub that is where people can really see and learn who you are. Then from there they can purchase products or be pointed to a site where they can purchase. When people come to your blog they want to read and or watch what you have to say and learn from you. This does two things, one builds your database when they subscribe to your RSS feed and two allows them to learn about you to decide if they want to do business with you.

    Now with all this great information these steps are not just a onetime thing, these steps are to be done on a consistent basis and from doing these steps you will see an increase in fans and increase in traffic to your site. An added bonus you will see business come in!

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    The Power of Video Marketing

    In the age of the internet, marketing has been truly transformed. Social networking and blogging strategies that use search engine optimization (SEO) are the most typical methods of marketing online, but there are other creative ways to market your website or business on the web, including video. YouTube is the web’s top site for streaming user-generated video content, and has been used as a springboard for many successful entrepreneurs and businesses. You can find a video for just about anything on YouTube.

    YouTube has viewers from every walk of life; it’s an extremely effective way to get your content seen by a wide array of people. When you do blogging and social media people are just seeing your picture and reading your posts, when you do video people can truly connect with you. Some videos become so popular so fast, they’re more commonly called “going viral”, people who aren’t avid internet users have heard about them. Viral video marketing is a great way to get yourself noticed by a huge amount of people in a very short amount of time. This is great news for any freelancer or business that is looking to get its name out there!

    The art of viral marketing is a tough business, and not easy to crack. With a rumored 50,000+ uploads each day to YouTube, it’s difficult to get your video noticed right away. Some videos become viral naturally through great content, and even more still become viral through detailed planning and effort. With the help of blogs, forums, social networks, email, and word of mouth, videos can become viral rather quickly. This is not without work, however.

    The benefits of Internet Marketing along with Video Marketing are never ending. Not only will you reach a large amount of diverse people, but your company’s name can become the topic of many conversations overnight. If your video becomes viral, chances are people will discuss it with their friends and family who they think might find it interesting. Thus, viral video marketing is a highly effective way to get your brand name into the world, or keep it there.

    With the resulting traffic that is sure to head to your website, your business is sure to grow as people become more acquainted with your products. Fact; I have had over 5 people I have personally done videos for and put up on YouTube and their social media and they have seen results right away. Either it was purchasing of a product, sign up for an event, or new client in the door. You can see how important it is for your business so now I challenge you to start with your video blogs and YouTube channel. It is so much fun trust me! Please let me know if you have questions about videos I would love to assist you in this new journey!

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    Fun Video with Animoto

    This is my sales pitch! I am looking for businesses who need help managing their social media or would like a 2 hour consultation for $50. Here is a fun video I created with Animoto. Enjoy!

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    Social Media Strategy

    The one question I get a lot is “What do you put up for your posts” Here is a outline for your social media strategy

    3 Educational Tips:

    • Something on your industry
    • Quote or video that has to do with what you do
    • Article you wrote or saw that helps explain what you do or what your industry is about

    2 Posts that share who YOU are and your passions for what you do

    • Remember people do business with people they know, like and trust by sharing who we are and what we enjoy this builds relationships and business
    • It can be your story why you chose your line of work
    • Testimonials

    1 Selling point

    • A promo for the week
    • Upcoming Event
    • Who you would like to connect with
    • Asking for business

    I hope this helps!

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    How to Introduce Social Media to Your Business

    How to Introduce Social Media to Your Business
    Tags: Managementsocial media adoption
    September 20, 2010 by Danny Brown

    Fact – too many businesses still need to wake up and realize that social media is not “one of these Internet fads” that will disappear.

    Fact – because of this mindset, too many businesses are potentially missing out on extra business that could mean the difference between staying afloat and going under. So why the problem?

    One of the main reasons is that businesses – whether it’s the CEO, top-tier management or otherwise – are looking at social media as an individual medium, much like PR or marketing.

    This is where the cracks start to appear. Social media benefits companies the most when it’s used as part of a marketing campaign or similar.

    Social media is also perfect for reaching out and connecting with your audience, as opposed to just selling them something. Sure, you’re still selling your brand or product – but this time, it’s in an “encouraging to ask questions” approach instead of “this is us and you’ll like it” one.

    Accepting that social media needs to be approached as an integrated strategy rather than a standalone campaign is the first step businesses need to take. After that, the job gets a little bit easier.

    Define Your Audience
    Just like any market or product, social media is made up of different audiences. As a business owner, you wouldn’t launch a new product onto a more traditional marketplace without some in-depth market research first – don’t ignore this on social media.

    Knowing your audience is key to succeeding in business social media. You need to know if your audience are participants or promoters. Why the need to differentiate? Simple –

    •Participants are social media users that may use numerous social media sites and applications, but don’t really “take part” in the medium. They’re like the visitors to your business website that may purchase something and then interact with you no further. There’s nothing wrong with this – but as a method of expanding your brand, you may need to look elsewhere.
    •Promoters are the users that like to share information – whether it’s recommending something via Twitter or their blog, if they come across something they like they will pass that information on. This is where your use of social media can help build your name. Just remember that social media works both ways. Don’t try and cheat the system – give back just as much (more, even) as you receive.
    Have a Clear and Defined Goal
    Another area where businesses are failing to adapt social media to their needs is that they don’t have a clear goal on what they want to achieve. Many hear the phrase “social media” and immediately feel they need to be a part of this buzz, jump straight in without any forward thinking, and are then disappointed with the (lack of) results.

    Ask yourself who you want to connect with and why, and then research the areas of social media that are most relevant to your needs. Demographics are one of the key points of knowledge for any campaign – make sure you know where your demographics are playing online. A social map can help here.

    Again, though, don’t try and play the system – cheaters will soon be found out, and your brand can suffer irreparable damage if seen as merely a self-promotional company on social media.

    Tools of the Trade
    Once you have your audience and your goal set out, you need to use the tools that will help you the most. There are numerous available, and this is where building your social media connections can help, by advising what ones they use and what results they achieve.

    Some of the best free examples of business tools include Monitter (which allows you a view on Twitter discussions of keywords); Google Alerts (giving you insight into what’s being said about you); and Social Mention (letting you gauge social reactions and reach to your topic or keywords and allowing you to jump in on conversations elsewhere).

    Getting into social media shouldn’t be a hard decision for businesses to make – it’s either right for you or it isn’t. Social media is a long-term strategy, not a short-term fire sale.

    Understand that, and you begin to understand social media.

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    The 7 Rules of Achievement By: Tom Terwilliger

    Have you been struggling with goal setting? Or even wanting to know what you REALLY want in your life, both business and professionaly? I ready this book The 7 Rules of Achievement By: Tom Terwilliger and it has changed my life! Check it out, just click on the book below:

    The Achievement Bootcamp is a high impact, experiential 2-day training that will have you using the 7 RULES with military like precision to achieve even your most outrageous goals.

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    The Art of Follow-Up

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