Posts

Interest in Pinterest

Are women leading the growth of the next big Internet thing? The answer is an enthusiastic ‘yes’.  Pinterest is catching on fast among women. And why not? Haven’t women always been the ones to cut recipes out of magazines, save pictures for wedding planning, and pass on their favorite sayings? Internet sensations all have one thing in common. They take advantage of long-standing habits and interests of things that people do offline and find a way to automate it online -in a very appealing, often addictive way. With a good setup and a lot of luck, it turns viral. Facebook used this simple formula, now Pinterest has, too.Pinterest Pinning Image

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is self-described as a virtual pin-up board. While surfing the Internet, users can ‘pin’ images that catch their attention and save them to their personal boards. It’s a great way of keeping track of the flooding impressions made every time one searches the net. How many times, while looking for something specific, do you come across an image or an idea that answers a different question you were wondering about? Pinterest makes it easy to keep track; just ‘pin it’ for later examination.Kissing Couple on framed wall

By virtue of its design, Pinterest piggybacks on Facebook. You need to have, and be logged in, to a Facebook account, then you enter Pinterest. Joining this way brings along all your Facebook friends, who see that you’re on Pinterest, and then of course they join, too. This social networking engine creates opportunities for sharing at a more intimate level than Facebook, which tends to be a bit more broadcasting-like. Pinterest is like inviting someone into your home. See the difference?

Is Pinterest Only for Women?

Will Pinterest interest men? So far, men have been slow at adapting, but I think that’s because the current content appeals mostly to women. To see my point, search on Pinterest for ‘fish’ or ‘trophy deer’. You’ll see that it’s not exactly ‘Man land’. Maybe that’s ok. But as men begin to use Pinterest, if they do, and ‘pin’ their interests, we’ll see more pics of trophy deer, monster fish and skimpy bikinis. Pinterest has lots of potential of becoming a classic man’s bragging wall, complete with pics of themselves with their latest kill or catch.

Pinterest for Travel

Watch for travel to become a hot topic on Pinterest. The largest buying demographic for travel is women. Imagery and social networking aspects have proven to be the strongest driver of travel purchases. It all adds up to a new powerful promotion tool for hotels and leisure-focused businesses. I’ve started pinning images from travel sites I’ve created, Posada Yum Kin and RelaxWisconsin.com on my board (full-disclosure). They are getting attention thanks to Pinterest.

Invitation Only

Like Google+, Pinterest new users need to be ‘invited’.  So, how do you get an invitiation? Leave a comment on this post and I will send you an invite. For a great ‘How to’ on signing up for Pinterest, check out Megan Tietz’ blog on Sorta Crunchy.

Pinner Beware

I’m not sure anyone really cares, but it’s good to know that Pinterest has been receiving a little heat for “non-transparent advertising methods”- gasp. Hey, everyone needs to make money, but it’s becoming more and more important that users know when ‘their content’ is being commercialized. How does that happen? After a user pins an image, Pinterest tags the images with links to marketing affiliates like eBay, Amazon and so on. If someone clicks on the image (which now in effect has become an ‘ad’), then they will be sent to the linking site. Pinterest makes money when people click and/or buy product. Read more on that at LLSocial.com.

This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

A Tour- The Backend of the Internet

SwitchboardPlaced in non-descript buildings, evolved from early communication companies- these are the physical things that make up the Internet. Here is a fascinating look at the backend of the Internet.
 

This video by Ben Mendelsohn, a documentary filmaker, starts out in New York and expands across the globe to take you on a tour that shows you what makes up the Internet.
 

After watching this video mystic words like “cyber-space” will lose some of their mystique and concepts that seemed awesome, will now be almost ordinary. Enjoy!
 
Infrastructure

This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

Be Smart with Smartphones

So much of being safe in life is about just being smart and using common sense. While traveling would you leave your purse sitting openly in the front seat of a locked car? Would you venture out in an area that you don’t know after midnight?

These same rules apply with new technologies like smartphones. Several of the major networks have been running stories on privacy issues resulting from new GPS ‘smart’ technology known as ‘geotagging’. Geotagging is the type of technology that smartphones use to track people’s locations. It is the technology that sites like Foursquare use as people ‘check-in’ to restaurants and businesses. Taking advantage of this technology also requires a new level of learning for people about their devices. Be responsible, take the time to learn what your technology is actually doing and what it all requires to be safe.

Here’s a short video from NBC Action News on the downside of uploading pictures.

Don’t Panic!

Although it makes for a good story on network news, there really is no reason to panic. I attempted to find the GPS coordinates on several of my pictures. I found that it is not so easy. Now, I know that preditors and nutcases will sometimes go to any means, but I’m not convinced that even though, it’s possible, that there is a very high likelihood.

Use Safe Sites

That said, Facebook and Twitter have started stripping the metadata automatically from uploaded pictures, so there is some level of safety there. Be sure your privacy settings are set correctly.

Turn Off the Setting!

The easiest way to stop posting your location is to set your phone so your camera doesn’t log your location. It’s usually done by going to Settings> General > Location Services. Phones vary so if you can’t find it check out your user guide or check with your smartphone store. Some phones allow you to turn off just the geotagging on your photos and some may require you to turn off you geotagging altogether.

For more information about setting your phone correctly, check out I Can Stalk You’s information on protecting your information.

This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

Top 3 for Halloween

I love Halloween, it seems to be a holiday many countries celebrate, and overall, can agree on. Here are few of Halloween’s other names -wordwide:
Halloween Cookies 2011

  • Latin America – Day of the Dead
  • Scotland – All-Hallows-Even
  • Phillippines – Todos Los Satos
  • Japan – Obon Festival (aka Matsuri or Urabon)
  • China – Teng Chieh
  • Hong Kong  – Yue Lan (Festival of the Hungry Ghosts)
  • Korea – Chuseok or Hangawi (in August)
  • Nepali – Gai Jatra (aka. Cow Pilgrimage –as cows lead the spirits of the dead into the next land)
  • Sweden – Alla Helgons Dag
  • Even though it may be named something different in many countries, this fall festival is usually linked with the Roman Catholic heritage with All Saints Day and All Souls Day. It is believed that several indigenous cultures as far reaching as the Aztecs to the Pagans have observed similar festivities around the same time each year. Although in most cultures this holiday focuses on honoring the dead and celebrating the cycle of life and death, in much of the United States it has simply become a lighthearted celebration of our ghoulish side.

    Pick One-

    So today, I’d like to share what really scares me. Even scarier than a dressed-up ghoul or worse, a clown, is –wait for it— reality! Check out these 23 Creepy Robots, a collection put together by the Huffington Post. Some of these robots are being used in medical situations and in reality represent a break-through in medical technology. But I don’t think I’ll be alone in saying “these things creep me out!”

    In the same collection, be sure to check out the singing Reindeer ‘Rudi and Judi”. Not creepy, but cute.

    Pick Two-

    Top pick under the Entertainment category is still the Halloween Light Show featuring Michael Jackson’s Thriller.

    Pick Three-

    Time to find a costume. For this one let’s start with the makeup. After you get this on your face, you could wear almost anything to go with it.

    These are my top picks. What are yours?

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    Angry Birds Take Over Halloween

    The Angry Bird phenomenon isn’t over. Mobile, iPod and other hand-held device owners have made Angry Birds the hottest game of 2011. Apparently, being the most popular Halloween costume of the year isn’t enough to satisfy Angry Birds. Angry Birds Halloween Costumes

    Move over Charlie Brown, here is Angry Birds’ Ham’o’ween. Just in time for Halloween, they have put together a short video announcing the newest update for Angry Birds Seasons and also introducing the newest Angry Bird. This Angry Bird might be small but it packs a big punch! Pursue the pigs through 30 levels filled with pumpkin patches, exploding jack-o-lanterns, and creepy skeletons, lit by a full moon and eerie lantern light. Complete all the levels to find some special Halloween surprises!

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    Social Energizer’s Top 5 Saturday Morning’s Post

    I have a busy weekend planned with the girls, so I needed to be a lazy blogger for today’s Saturday Morning’s Post. What does a blogger do when they want to provide great content to their community, but do it quickly? How about the top 5 posts from the past year in this category, Saturday Morning’s Post? This is our category that’s just for fun. It’s a great opportunity for us to share some of the great things online that we come across on a day-to-day basis.

    Here they are, let me know what you think. Are they your favorites, too?

    1. Google+ for Everyone!

    2. The Social Media Grade for the Packer Concert for NFL Season Opener

    3. TedTalks. Better Than Redbox

    4. How Shrimp Tacos Moved Our Social Media World

    5. The Wealth of the Web Runs Deep

    It seems like the more personal, the better the score. Not really a surprise is it? Are you measuring your visits and your comments? How is your blog doing?

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    Thumbs Up If You Like Creative Design

    Look at these ads created by AT&T. This clearly shows that they are attuned to creating ads that have the ability to go viral. This one was sent by a friend in my social network via email. The email was titiled “Very, Very Cleverly Done”. I think so, too. Not only was the fabulous art done well and cleverly, but also the bigger idea. That of an ad campaign that is embraced by its audience. It strongly supports the brand of AT&T and is an innovative way of getting across their message. The only thing I think they could have done better was to have a link to their Facebook page or maybe another network.

    Take a look at these great posters. Using just hands and a phone, an American phone company advertised worldwide by painting hands in the colours of different countries.  It’s just brilliant.

    As social media goes, I’d say this is great stuff.

    India

    India AT&T creative ad

    Bahamas

    Bahamas AT&T creative ad

    Australia

    Australia AT&T creative ad

    Brazil

    Brazil AT&T creative ad

    Canada

    Canada AT&T creative ad

    China

    China AT&T creative ad

    Eqypt

    Eqypt AT&T creative ad

    Costa Rica

    Costa Rica AT&T creative ad

    China

    China AT&T creative ad -2nd version

    England

    England AT&T creative ad

    Italy

    Italy AT&T creative ad

    France

    France AT&T creative ad

    Japan

    Japan AT&T creative ad

    Mexico

    Mexico AT&T creative ad

    Morocco

    Morocco AT&T creative ad

    Mexico

    Mexico AT&T creative ad

    Netherlands

    Netherlands AT&T creative ad

    Norway

    Norway AT&T creative ad

    Paraguay

    Paraguay AT&T creative ad

    South Africa

    South Africa AT&T creative ad

    United Kingdom

    United Kingdom AT&T creative ad

    Japan

    Japan AT&T creative ad

    Russia

    Russia AT&T creative ad

    Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    5 Cool Sites To Help You Get Close To Your Inner Planet

    It’s sunrise on a Saturday. Get your coffee, sit on your deck and watch the sun come up. Too cold? No deck? Here you go…


    First Light by *SoberDreamer on deviantART

    2- Looking out over the vast sunrise leads one to consider the stars. Here’s the picture of the day from NASA. Cool new pictures from the solar system and galaxies near you, everyday.

    3- From our friends at Stumbleupon, we bring you an interactive image of the earth. What’s so cool about that? Check it out! Moving around it is addictive.

    4- Time to get your geek on? I found this cool little CSS3 modeled solar system, clearly an example where web design is going.

    5- For the designers in all of us, this is breathtaking. The Wishes Greenhouse. It takes a bit to load, but sit back and doodle with it a bit. Let me know what you think of it.

    Clair-et-net interactive

    Click on The Wishes Greenhouse link above

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    Social Networks in Turmoil Check Out Your Options!

    Did Facebook make you angry this week? Are you afraid of Google becoming the Walmart of the Internet?

    How dare they change things on what seems like a whim, right? Like Netflix, I think they forgot about the Number One Rule in Social Media. What is that rule, Mr. Zuckerberg? It’s about them, not you! I think you will soon be learning this lesson well… and very soon at that.

    Facebook users were outraged this week when Facebook arbitrarily and seemingly without notice changed the Newsfeed, Privacy settings and Apps area. Get ready because there are more changes on the horizon. One is Facebook’s replacement for profiles called Timeline. Here you can share the entire story of your life. Really, do I want to do that? Did I ask for that?

    After listening to this video, I’d just like to say one more time. Mr. Zuckerberg, It’s about us, not you!

    I played around with some of the new features this week, like the lists for “Close Friends“. All I can say is it is clunky. After Facebook makes a few suggestions on “who” your close friends are you need to scroll through your friend lists, select a person, and then rescroll through the freind list again -each time. The competition has drag and drop. And for Timeline this is what the people at Mashable are saying about that.

    Facebook Timeline Issues

    Right after Timeline will come new features. Adding a music and media platform with Spotify, MOG & Rdio

    Looks like Facebook wants to be your one-stop shop.

    How do you feel?

    1- Don’t like it, but you’ll get over it?

    Here’s a post on how to adjust your “new” News Feed & Ticker

    And here’s a post on adjusting your Apps and permissions

    2- Don’t like it and you want to leave?

    Here’s an article on exporting your stuff out of Facebook to a third party and then to Google+. (Read further options below before going to Google+).

    Where can you go?

    Up until now, the top choices have been MySpace, Zing, Friendsters.

    Recently, Google has been working on Google+. Google+ has been plagued with criticism for it’s agonizingly, slow rollout. Why wait, everyone asked? Cunningly, I believe Google+ gauged its Grand-Launch-to-the Public for this long-planned “upgrade” by Facebook. Everyone knows that, historically, Facebook hasn’t managed its upgrades well. Industry insiders knew about the upgrades, but Facebook users were not really aware of it. Someone paying attention at Google+ probably read the writing on the wall and strategized on this opportunity. This timing just couldn’t be coincidence, could it?

    That said, if you need some tips on trying Google+ out, here they are:

    Google+ needed some momentum to experience a successful launch. Facebook’s changes presented Google+ the opportunity. This week many Facebook users are leaving to checkout Google+. It is a mass exodus to Google+.

    BUT did you know Google is being looked at by Congress for Antitrust issues?

    Here is a post about the antitrust issues featuring Wisconsin’s Herb Kohl.

    Will you move just to get shut down and driven back to Facebook?

    Did you know that very soon you will have a Third Choice?

    Unthink

    Yes, that’s right Unthink.com has what they claim are all the answers to Facebook’s and Google’s lack of respect for their users. In fact, Unthink won’t call you a user. They’ll call you an owner and here’s what they say about being an owner.

    Unthink their idea of ownership - users

    And here is a video that says it all on how Unthink plans to treat their new owners with a little parody on how Facebook users may have felt this week.

    My question? When will Unthink be released and ready? I hope their rollout is not as slow as Google+’ was. These folks stand a chance and their marketing is in place. Watch for more on Unthink. Coming soon (I hope).

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!

    Google+ for Everyone!

    I have a confession. As a social media enthusiast, I should have been biting at the chomp for my Google+ invite. Like many, I was not.  But finally, a friend passed along an invite and I took a look inside. Kicked the tires and still wasn’t that impressed. Then I attended a local Social Media Breakfast in Appleton, WI, which featured an open group discussion on Google+, where it’s going, and why it’s important to me, and will be, to the small and medium-sized businesses that I work with. Very helpful stuff!

    My new outlook on Google+?Google Plus Project

    Google+ actually offers something new. Before our breakfast meeting, I considered it merely a rip-off of Facebook, just invented to pull market share. Now, I see that it is a bit different with a different goal. In actuality, I think it may steal more market share from LinkedIn, than Facebook. You’ll see why in the examples below.

    The more I use Google Plus, the more I understand how important it will become. Trust me.

    So what’s new and unique about Google+?

    It offers the ability to control who you are speaking with and allow separate conversations between different sets of friend and business ‘circles’. Businesses professionals will be able to connect with their various customers, leads, vendors and resources separately, but on one closely connected platform. As the sales and business cycle progresses, joining various groups for collaboration will be seemless -just create a new circle.

    Google circlesThe magic of Google+ is that it allows you much closer interactions.  It opens the doors to people that you may not know, but would like to. For instance, I can follow Chris Brogan and really have a conversation with him. It doesn’t feel the same on Facebook or Twitter. It just doesn’t. So who is Chris Brogan, you ask? He’s my ‘Go-To’ guy (although, I doubt he knows it) for social media advice and online breaking news. Check out his helpful tutorial, “Start Now On Google Plus”. Let me know if you need an invite –I have extra ones!

    What’s next on Google+?

    If you’ve gone to Chris’ link, you’ve learned some easy ways to connect with people already on Google+. “Friendsurf” a little. What fun.

    Then add some more to your profile, add some posts, maybe link to your website, blog and add some photos. Read some interesting posts by others; share them. It has a déjà-vu characteristic to it, but it still feels different and new. Then, as Chris says, check out the comment sections. It’s sort of like Twitter and Facebook combined, pulling from the best of both worlds.

    Google+ Rollout Strategy

    Has anyone thought of the Google+ strategy behind the rollout? There have been MANY negative comments around this. I’d just like to offer what I hope is perhaps a different viewpoint. I think it may be genius! By limiting the amount of users, and reserving it for the early-adapter, social media techies, Google+’s first phase used a strategy designed to “get the kinks out”. The second phase of their rollout strategy seems to be “by invitation only” which will encourage the early-adapters to support and teach this new stream of users. Since Google and all of their products do not supply ‘live’ help and very little online feedback, this second phase strategy is probably a good idea. Maybe even key to it’s survival.

    Why Wait Anymore?

    Where the tires hit the road will be in the third phase, which I suspect will be a more open rollout to the public. Soon Google+ will attract ‘niche’ communities, just like other social networks have in their start-up phases. Celebrities have already begun to spring up and other opinion leaders (besides those working in social media) will follow. Just as a tee-hee, I noticed that there is still not a ‘politician’ group on Group As, so it’s still relatively unspoiled.

    What lays ahead for Google+?

    Will Google+ garner enough enthusiastic support for long-time Facebookers to give up their personal pages, established friend connections, photos, etc.? Or will it perhaps find its own value, apart from Facebook? Will the ‘Walmart-like’ strategy, one of total market dominance, ultimately persuade users to move to Google+? After all, they currently own google.comyoutube.comblogger.com, and gmail.com. Four of the top trafficked sites of the world. As they become ready to tackle the next phase of growth for Google+, are they likely to up-the-ante on those not using Google+? Could they introduce a scoring system similar to Klout to give advantage to their early-adapters and top-users? Could they lower the SEO of sites not embracing Google+? The possibilities are endless and pretty much theirs to choose. Time will tell.  What do you think?

    This has been Social Energizer’s Saturday Morning Post, usually a less business oriented, more personally related edition than our blog that is offered during the week. Social Energizer’s purpose is to help companies develop lasting relationships with their customers and increase their visibility online.

    In addition to building dynamic and affordable websites, we integrate inbound marketing techniques into each business’ current marketing plan and utilize digital channels and strategies like Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Search Engine Optimization, and Web-integrated Email Campaigns.

    We invite you to comment and rate each blog, so we can ever improve our offerings to you. Are you venturing into online marketing? Give us a call!