Monthly Archives: January 2012

Business blogging – my latest for Smart Insights

My latest effort for the influential UK digital marketing blog, Smart Insights is my third post in a series on business blogging. This piece concentrates on ways to ‘seed’ your blog posts once they have been written and published – so they are seen by as many people as possible.

 

The highlights include:-

1. Promoting it on your own website.

2. Using blog indexes.

3. Using email.

4. Using Twitter.

5. Using Linkedin.

6. Using Facebook.

7. Using bookmarks.

8. Using other content formats.

Visit the blog post to read more and also click on my name to read my previous business marketing posts on topics including social media for business, email marketing, using video in B2B and two posts on Facebook, one on how to use Facebook for business and one with lots of relevant Facebook business case studies showing best practice.

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Ten social media trends for 2012

An interesting set of slides from Comscore which previews/summarises the key findings from their latest social media report. (Using SlideShare to preview downloadable paid/free content is itself an interesting example of content marketing in action that will be explored more in a future post).

It’s not a surprise to me to see data which supports claims such as

  • Social networking is the most popular online activity in the world
  • Microblogging platforms like Twitter have emerged as a disruptive new force in social networking, news and entertainment
  • Mobile devices are fuelling an addiction to social

Slides 20-26 detail how Facebook truly dominates the social scene. How the site is even winning in most individual countries and regional markets is pretty astounding too.

What trends are you expecting or hoping for in 2012?

Links worth a click #17

Some informed viewing for you this week.

First up, Coca Cola’s approach to social media in video form. Sure it’s big budget, but there are smart lessons in here. Love how they’ve used the word liquid which is a creative way of linking their strategy to their products. How could you do something similar?

Second, a video showing how Google search continues to evolve to the personal needs of the user.

Finally, the latest user data from Linkedin (for January 2012) shows how the platform continues to add users around the world. Some interesting intelligence for presentations.

 

R E S P E C T

Aretha was right. Actually, respect is a fundamental human need. Most of us in our professional careers yearn for it. But how do great business leaders motivate and inspire  colleagues, managers and customers to deliver ground breaking, difference-making work? How do they (you?) set themselves apart from the poorer ones?

Perhaps these five characteristics are a good place to start

1. Passion. Great leaders believe utterly in what they are trying to achieve. There is often a more compelling reason to deliver great marketing work that matters over and above the need to simply get paid. Being associated with work that matters drives business leaders the world over. Pharmaceuticals save life, construction projects provide shelter and a place of learning whilst packaging innovations reduce waste and carbon and positively impact the planet.

2. Decisiveness. Making tough decisions, bold decisions, going in a new or different direction, and admitting when you got it wrong are all hallmarks of a leader worth following. I blogged yesterday about decisiveness in football club management and stimulated some interesting discussions across social networks. Having courage to stand out and make a decision marks leaders out.

3. Confidence. Passion matched with courage and decisiveness naturally instills confidence. The leader by default is confident but more importantly so too are the people around him. Whilst passion is innate, for me confidence (like positivity) is definitely infectious. Confidence in the direction being taken, the decisions being made and the work being done fosters greater productivity in people who want to be successful.

4. Inspiring. Most business leaders assume a leadership position by default – whether they set a company up, rise up to the role or are recruited to the role. Few are trained in leadership. The specifics are learned on the job. Inspiring leaders bottle their passion, decisiveness and confidence and package it in a way to ensure it becomes infectious so people buy in. Virgin regularly tops the list of brands most marketers would like to work on / for / with. Why?

5. Approachable. I believe leaders need to be approachable. This doesn’t mean anyone can get in touch at any time. But working in an ivory tower and not engaging can damage reputation and business. Listening becomes more important as a coaching skill. It’s not a surprise to me that during the last few years more senior managers are ‘going back to the floor’ to see what’s happening and what their workforce, customers and suppliers ever-shifting perceptions are.

Being a leader marks you out in a tough economy and creates business opportunities if you preach and practice what you preach. People will come to value your contribution and trust you to, in time, help their business.

Q: Have I missed any? What attributes do you see in great business leaders, that lead to them being respected? Share below.

 

8 key issues to review to ensure your business blog supports company goals

My latest effort for the influential UK digital marketing blog, Smart Insights went live today. In it, I offer eight ways to ensure your blog does all it can to achieve company goals, including

1. Staying on topic.

2. The importance of keywords.

3. Being helpful.

4. Ensuring ‘stickiness’.

5. Following a formula.

6. Talking in multiple voices.

7.  The importance of good design.

8. Lead nurturing.

It’s the second in a series on business blogging. Click on experts and my name to read my previous B2B marketing related posts on social media for businessemail marketing, using video in B2B and two posts on Facebook, one on how to use Facebook for business and one with lots of relevant Facebook business case studies showing best practice.

Hope you find it useful.

Why decisive leadership matters

Following my new year theme of efficiency it was interesting to see that new Premier League football club QPR dismissed their manager Neil Warnock yesterday, as they sit in 17th place in the league. (The fact that 17th will keep them in the league for another season is perhaps incidental).

In comments to Sky Sports, QPR’s Malaysian owner and chairman Tony Fernandes said: “This decision has been made in the best interests of the club and I can assure everyone that this is not a decision that was made lightly. Sadly, our recent run of poor form has seen us slip alarmingly down the table and the board felt it was the right time to make a change.”

Sometimes, football club owners are accused of focusing on the short term. But one thing is true. They are focused on the business of results and the commercial success that results bring.

In making a bold decision at a critical time of the season and early in the new year, Fernandes has signalled intent to a number of groups. His incoming manager, in all likelihood Mark Hughes, the playing staff, club employees, fans and football community at large will all know he is a guy that means business and commands respect whether they agree or not.

So whether it is resource, budget, product portfolio, premises, export, diversification or other type of problem you held over into 2012, can you take a leaf out of Tony Fernandes’ book and make the bold changes that need to be made in your business?

For more on the QPR story and how Fernandes is engaging fans on Twitter about his decision, read this story.

Things that happen every 60 seconds online

Business Insider published this fantastic infographic detailing some of the amazing things that happen every 60 seconds online. I can’t vouch for the statistics but if you haven’t yet realised that your business can benefit from embracing the web, hopefully this does the trick.