The last few weeks have been rather interesting filled with the usual challenges and information overload that most of us who are self-employed have to deal with. I’ve needed support, provided help and garnered an enormous amount of information along the way. Throughout it all, I’ve managed to find solutions on my own and through the support of the community of bloggers that I’m a part of.
Back in the 80’s (when I first entered the corporate world), I was often amazed at how few female mentors there were. There were the occasional exceptions but for the most part I witnessed business women actually sabotaging each other’s career paths in attempts to further their own. I witness similar behavior today in the U.S. when women run for political offices and are often held up to different standards than their male counterparts. (If they’re raising a family, this seems to be especially true.)
On September 2nd, Chris Brogan unfollowed all 131,000 of his Twitter followers. (As of now, he’s following 376 people and 191,010 people are following him.) Why did he decide to delete all of his followers and start over? Spam. He was receiving over 200 direct message spams a day. Chris is referring to this as the “The Great Twitter Unfollow Experiment of 2011”. Now this may sound a bit drastic but we’ve all heard stories of people who have deleted their Twitter accounts and started all over again for similar reasons. So what went wrong and how can you and I avoid getting into a similar predicament? What sort of Twitter strategy should we implement?
When you’re on social networking sites or commenting on blogs, do you recognize bloggers that you know? Do you see familiar faces? Are there people online that you’ve never met, yet you feel you know them? If you see someone’s Twitter name or user ID, does their real name immediately pop into your head? If the answer is yes, I think it’s safe to say that those bloggers have implemented a strategy for branding themselves online.
There are a lot of tools available to help businesses and entrepreneurs measure their social influence. Some are free and others are for a fee. Do we need a tool to measure our influence? How does one measure social media influence anyways? Even if we use a free tool, our time isn’t free. Our time is valuable and any effort that we expend needs to evaluated. Whatever our goals are, we need to ensure that what we’re doing is achieving the results that we want.
By the number of comments on my last post, “Google+ Social Network – Part of Your Business Strategy?”, I can see that love it or hate it, people are talking about Google Plus. Some bloggers are getting passionate about this topic and if you’re on any of the popular social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn, you can’t avoid seeing post after post about it. What is it about Google+ that has everyone talking?
Like everything else, our online profiles are a reflection on us. It’s part of our brand. Even our statistics tell a lot about us. How many followers do you have compared to the number of people you’re following? How many tweets do you have? Are people that I recognize and respect following you? Do you have a profile pic and use your real name?
I was pleasantly surprised last week when I opened up a personalized thank you card from Grasshopper – a company that offers 800#s to small businesses. I had linked to them (using my affiliate link) in my article about online shopping being like a self-check-out lane.
Those of us who are serious about our businesses have some sorts of plans. Whether it’s a formal business plan or notes written on a cocktail napkin, there’s an idea behind it. As our plans evolve and we start developing our strategy, we identify our niche target customer. Who’s going to buy our product or service? What are the benefits to them?
Stalking is a pretty strong word to use here but it’s not a bad idea to get on someone’s radar screen. All of us have stumbled upon someone who is making an impact online. Maybe they have a healthy number of quality followers. Perhaps their tweets are retweeted so much it makes you envious. Wouldn’t you just love to get on their radar screen?