You Decide What You Want To Hear

The pursuit of a social media engager has proven to be more difficult then I first anticipated. The sheer volume of information available makes the digestion process more time consuming and important. I’ve read several blogs that recommend taking one day and writing an entire weeks worth of posts which unfortunately I haven’t been able to do. Much of what I write is based on experience, current events, or something I read during the day. I do recognize I could use a little more structure which would lead to a more positive reading experience. As a result I’ve decided to try and break down each day into a specific category/subject with a social media, Internet marketing, or online search marketing overtone.

I’ve already had some suggestions passed along to me for specific categories specific days. Ultimately it comes down to what you the reader wants to hear. Therefore I’m leaving the idea box open to you for the entire weekend. Here is a sample schedule that I’ve comprised so far.

Monday – Brand Monday
Tuesday – Techy Tuesday
Wednesday – Open/Flex Day
Thursday – Trendy (fashion) Thursday
Friday – Foodie Friday
Saturday – Sports Saturday
Sunday – Open/Flex Day

I look forward to hearing your suggestions and ideas.

10 Inspirational Quotes for Lagging Motivation

The second quarter of the year, between April and June, typically tend to be the slowest months because of several factors. First is the weather. While it’s not in the dead of winter, the weather is not particularly good anywhere in the United States. Second is the fact there isn’t any major holidays. It wont be until the 4th of July that employees will get an additional day off during the week. Third there’s more stress involved. Nothing says stress like the IRS and tax season. In addition there’s those New Years resolutions you made that have begun to slip. As a result, the motivation tank seem to be on empty and reinforcements are needed. To help propel you through the following months here’s 10 inspirational quotes for motivation.

  1. “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times, I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” — Michael Jordan

  2. “Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you’re right.” –Henry Ford

  3. “The journey is the reward.” –Chinese Proverb

  4. “Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” — John Wooden

  5. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain

  6. “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” — Eleanor Roosevelt

  7. “Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished: If you’re alive it isn’t.” — Richard Bach

  8. “The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settled for.” —
    Maureen Dowd

  9. “If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.” — Zig Ziglar

  10. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Please share any of your favorite inspirational quotes to help propel everyone forward.

Clear as Mud. Portland’s New Mobile Internet

As a student studying advertising I probably take note of advertisement more than the typical observer. While on my way to work a couple of weeks ago I noticed a peculiar billboard that looked like the one below.


clear_logo

The visibility was approximately the same for the bottom text. About 3 minutes up the road there was another billboard that said the same thing. Two days later across town, the same billboard.

They had me. I was curious. I wanted to know what the heck that billboard stood for, but unless I wanted to hurl myself up onto the physical billboard to see the bottom text I was left to wonder if France was invading the US or not.

Finally a week ago I drove past the same billboard’s on the way to work and my call for action had been answered. The billboard below appeared and suddenly the ad campaign was starting to make some sense.


clear-billboard2

I had a source! Clear.com. Working in the Internet marketing field my interest increased, but not enough for me visit the website.

A few days after the billboard sighting I found myself with a 20 minute break from class. I decided to wonder Portland State’s campus and thus the stars aligned. my path led me to the front of the campus where a booth was setup for Clear. I decided to find out first and foremost what the heck this product was, number two if this saleswomen knew her product, and number three any information that allow me to leverage their mobile Internet using my personal Internet marketing efforts.

Clear is a WiMAX service provider that released its product to Portland, Oregon on January 6th 2009. WiMax is considered a 4G quality connection that reaches miles not feet like WiFi. The sales representative stated that unlike Comcast or Verizon’s Internet service, which varies in speeds, Clear has a more consistent speed with a max of 4 MBps. She also claimed that when Clear sees a saturation of users, which will slow connection speed, Clear will push more juice to these particular areas to help sustain the speed. The WiMAX will be sustained by using the cell phone coverage towers. The saleswomen stated that by they will have the same coverage of cell phones allowing their WiMAX connection to be accessed beyond the cellphones connection range because of the increased connection reach. Another bold claim was the fact this service cannot be hacked. I repeat, cannot be hacked. The last bit of information I was passed along was Clear looked at what Japan did, a leader in WiFi access, and is replicating the technology to allow the entire city of Portland to be a WiMAX hot spot giving you the ability to have mobile access even on the highway!

I’ll try to go easy on this poor saleswomen.

I think it’s great there are companies out there that recognize the lack of Internet speed consistency, but these claims of “magically” adding additional juice sounds a little like black magic. If it was as simple as pushing more juice or pulling feeds from a hub that’s not being used why wouldn’t the current Internet service providers do that? Internet service providers have already tried using different frequencies to enhance Internet speed. First there was phone lines, then cable, then DSL, then FIOS and so on. The more people that upgrade or use a particular Internet service source the slower it’s going to be. I believe the initial tests for Clear will come back stating their speed IS faster than any other provider. Why? Because the overwhelming majority of Internet users will not use their service to access the Internet. The results will then spur on additional cities and eventually, while it will be faster than our current system, speeds and connectivity will be as erratic as ever.

I would also like to state I am not a mobile Internet user. Like car headset TV’s I believe surfing can be withheld for the 15 minutes it takes for me to get home to use the service. I do recognize the usefulness of the service and the fact businessmen and women will find more benefits to mobile Internet than me.

The next notion and potentially the most asinine was the statement, “The only way our system can be hacked is if the creators or administrators gave out the necessary information.” As an avid reader of Sydkn8 I can tell you there are people out there that will find a way to hack Clear and Clear will probably never know about it. In fact I believe this statement will only fuel hackers on just to show it can be done. Never underestimate the evolution of a Black Hat. Never.

While the concepts are great in theory and their ad campaign is off to a roaring start I have trouble believing Clear, Clear is the WiMAX service brand for Clearwire, will be able to sustain long term. Portland, Oregon is a sustainable, organic, green thriving city, but we’re not idiots either. When the dust settles and the billboards are down we’ll see how Clear the results are.

My Social Media Blog: Moving Forward

After catching a nasty bug and getting all my homework completed I’m ready to talk about how I will prevent my social media blog from re-crashing.

Over the past week I’ve talked about the death and rebirth of my blogthe pitfalls which lead to my blogs death, and how Google saved my blog. Moving forward I plan to continue to submit a sitemap to Google after each and every post. It will ensure my posts are backed up no matter what. After that I will be backing up my database or copying each individual post into a word document to ensure it’s security.

The biggest thing is to get back into my consistent posting. With a change in my normal weekly routine I’ve had to make some adjustments to ensure I continue to bring readers the quality content they have come to expect on a daily basis.

Next week I will be releasing my interview with a new mobile and Internet TV company’s Founder, TheChanner, Nina Alastruey.

Google : The Blog Saviour

Google has reshaped the Internet. What you may not know is they’re reshaped databasing too. When I re-wrote my WordPress database I was told there was no way to recover everything. They must not have used Google Webmaster tools before.

Google Webmaster Tools always Google to view and diagnose problems with your site, discover and link traffic, and share information about your site. The tools forces you to submit a sitemap which is a catalog of all pages on your site. After submitting a sitemap Google will use this to help index all of the pages you have within your site.

Prior to erasing my WordPress database I had submitted a sitemap and all but one of my posts were indexed in the Google database. Google stores a cache of indexed pages showing the most resent version of the page. I was then able to look at the page source of these cached pages to see the HTML version which would allow me to keep my formating. I was able to copy all but one of my posts and all comments using this method.

The WordPress system allows you to publish posts on any day or time you wish. Looking a the URL of each post I was able to determine what date all the posts were published. For the comments it was a little trickier. Each and every comment that is made on my blog sends me an e-mail which asks for my approval to post the comment. Fortunately for me I still had all my my comment approval e-mails saved which had the date and time the comments were made.

I find it truly amazing that any website can be salvaged just as a result of getting your site indexed. Photos, blog posts, comments, and any formating that is listed in your page source. My recommendation for anyone is to create a site map and submit it to Google Webmaster tools. It requires placing on line of code in your meta tags and will provide endless benefits. Ensure your website is protected by the masters themselves at Google.

Pitfalls: What Contributed to My Blogs Death

While I would love to completely blame my blogs death on Media Temple sadly I overlooked several crucial warnings. As I discussed yesterday in, The Death & Rebirth of My Blog in 24 Hours, I ran into several poor decisions which led to the death of my blog. The main criticism I had about the situation was there was no warning signs or flares shot up into the air saying, “If you click here you will lose everything you’ve done!”

When I actually decided to retrace my steps I learned, as mother always says, “If you took just two extra seconds to read what you were doing…”

warning

This, the first and most obvious sign, was placed prior to me clicking to install wordpress onto Nick Footer’s blog. For whatever reason I decided to ignore this bright red warning sign and continue as if nothing was going to happen.

databaseThis next, and now very obvious, second page was the final page that stood between creating a new database for Nick and deleting everything. Once again I failed to read the glaringly obvious NOTE at the bottom of each step and decided to just click next. What then unfolded was my database being re-written causing all the data to be lost. The difference really came down to clicking two buttons and placing the number 2 in the new box to create a new database.

You may or may not be familar with servers, databases, wordpress, or any of the technical applications during this weeks posts, but there is still some life lessons to be learned. While everyone wants to get ahead, take shortcuts, and pass over directions the chance you take is great. You may not get caught everytime, in fact it may just catch you once, but that one time may be a sustaintial enough lose it may cost your dearly. As my mother always, “Take the two seconds to read the directions and it will pay for the hours worth of headache you would otherwise endure.”

The Death & Rebirth of My Blog in 24 Hours

Gone. After 2 months of painstaking, teeth cutting, mind racking work my blog, posts, comments, and momentum was gone. As Miguel P. of Media Temple’s customer support stated:

I looked at your service and noted that there is only one database installed on your service which suggests that you accidentally overwrote the database of your first WordPress when you installed the second.

My day began by meeting with my good friend from school Nick Footer. We’ve been in constant competition for social media supremacy over the past few months. I told him that by setting up and starting his own blog it would help even the playing field. Nick finally decided to take the plunge.

We negotiated and decided the best way for him to start his blog would be to get his domain, run it on my server space with Media Temple, and lean on me for any technical questions. After all with 2 months of running successful I felt like I could comfortably tackle any challenge that came our way.

The day started in the wrong direction with Nick’s own blow up. After three phone calls with tech support we finally had his domain. The Honest Marketer was up and we were ready to get this blogging party started.

Using Media Temple’s patented one-click application installation system I went through the necessary steps to get nickfooter.com wordpress able and Nick happy.

nick-happy

I proceeded to his domain and everything looked great. I proceed to my domain and there was nothing. I had Nick go to the URL and he couldn’t get anything either. I was back on the phone with Miguel at Media Temple when he broke the news. Everything was gone. My posts, my comments, my theme, photos, everything, GONE! I was in disbelief and even started laughing. Nick wanted to die, but I refused for him to get bummed out.

After two straight days of work totaling 8 hours worth of time the blog is back! Every post, comment, and photo has been recreated to its original time and format. While some pingbacks have been lost that is the only casualty. I saw the gut wrenching flatline, but the social media gods have revived the blog.

Over the next week I’ll go over the pitfalls I made along the way, what I could have done to prevent this, how I revived the blog, and what I plan to do moving forward. Share some of your own blogging mishaps in a comment below.

3 Reasons Why Blogging isnt for You

Lets face it everyone has a blog today. There’s mom blogs, sports blogs, tech blogs, food blogs, finance blogs and more! If you’ve got a voice, no matter your age, you could be writing and producing your own personal or company blog! The blog Hearld stated back in February that there is well over 100 million blogs worldwide. With the growth of social media is there any reason why you shouldn’t jump on the blogging bandwagon?

1) Blogging Requires Constant Attention and Dedication

It is amazing how many companies and individuals get into the blog-o-sphere with initial vigor and excitement which eventually leads to forgetfulness and a waste of a domain. Here is an example of a social media company who put writing new content on the back burner. They’re not the only ones. In fact there are thousands of blogs that haven’t been updated in years! Your readers will be as dedicated as you are to posting. Fresh relevant content, like the kind provided by Fresh Content.net, is a must if you wish to sustain any kind of consistent readership. Can’t write a post everyday? Don’t worry, but be sure to set proper expectations. If you go on a spree of new blog posts everyday you better be prepared to sustain it. If you fall off and start writing once a week you’ll begin to see your readership lose interest and stop visiting everyday. If you’re struggling finding ideas you can try sites for blogging inspiration.

2) You Don’t Have Anything to Say

It is amazing how many people start writing a blog and find they don’t’ know what to say. Caroline Middlebrook wrote a post about 11 pointless blog posts that really makes a lot of sense. With each and every post you write you need to think of your audience, “What benefit will my readers get from reading this post?” Granted there are all different kinds of blogs with all different perspectives and reasons for blogging, but most beginning bloggers tend to ramble. They have no point of view and also violate reason number one by posting once every quarter century. They are simply cluttering our Internet because they have not planned out how they want to run their blog. If you need some direction I would suggest checking out Problogger.net and their post on Beginning Blogger Tips. Blogging is about a passion for a specific subject. I love social media marketing strategy and online search marketing strategy. I gain inspiration from my everyday work at EngineWorks which inspires me to write about my findings. Find your passion, find your voice, and plan out your blogging structure to retain those readers.

3) Everyone Has a Blog

You’ve heard about this term blog or your buddy has one. All the more reason you should get one too, right? Wrong. There is some things to keep in mind that may sway your mind that hasn’t already been mentioned. Everything you say can and will be recorded. Just because you live in the middle of nowhere doesn’t mean people will not find your blog or find out who you are. Another thing to keep in mind is if everyone has a blog how do you plan to stick out? Take a look at some of the most popular bloggers online to date. Each one has a focused point of view and each one posts daily. Gaining readership and traffic is all about separating yourself from the pack.

Have any other reasons someone shouldn’t blog? Feel free to make a comment and I’ll post them in an update later on in the month.