Articles written in March, 2012

March 30 2012

Introduction to Blogging for Business using Tumblr

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If your business has already seen the value of the blogging, and invests in creating unique content each week, then Tumblr is definitely a social network to utilize for exposure.  If your business is considering a creating blog, but has not decided where to host it, then learn more about the features of Tumblr within this post.   Tumblr is a mix between Twitter and WordPress offering a less verbose form of blogging where users can post updates with text, photos, quotes, links, dialogues, audio, video, slideshows, and more.  Below are the basic features that are included when participating in this free micro-blogging platform.

Customizable Account:

  • Design unique themes for your profile landing page to support your brand
  • Configure an about page or description page with external links
  • Create a unique url for the blog by re-directing to Tumblr
  • Combine the use of Google Analytics and Feedburner for page insights

Publishing Options:

  • Mobile and email applications
  • Phone number to record audio blogs
  • Ability to pre-schedule with a post queue
  • Re-blogging (embedding other blogs into yours)
  • Photosets and other apps for organizing content
  • News Feed Syndication to both Facebook and Twitter
  • Bookmarketlet tool for one-click sharing of external sources
  • Contributor content with an unlimited number of people and audience members

Optimized Content:

  • Uses url slugs and xml sitemaps for search engine visibility
  • Uses tags and hash tags for trending topics
  • Accepts high-resolution photos
  • Can organize and share to specific groups/individuals
  • You own the copyright for all content created

Just listing a few of the options available begins to describe the value this network offers a brand.  Over the next few weeks we will continue to examine and expand upon the features of Tumblr, and the ways to effectively use the network to blog for your business.

March 28 2012

Google Play includes Social Sharing

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Google Play begins to rollout globally today offering a condensed source for content from the previous Android market and other Google products.  Digital content gets a new platform within Play, by combining a user’s Google music, e-books, android apps, and games into a single hub.  A user will be able to access all their content from any Android device (mobile/tablet), computer, and even TV simultaneously with the aid of the free cloud.  Social sharing has been taken into account as well, and each of these categories offers unique options to share products with friends.  Non-android market users can access Google Play via an existing Google account, or on the web at play.google.com.  Google condensing all of these features into one place, and promoting the sharing primarily within Google Plus, may help to boost the engagement levels within the social network.

“Share what you love” is the slogan being used to promote the social sharing aspects of Google Play.  It includes the ability to share posts about your favorite e-books, music, movies, games or apps to your circles on Google Plus, in an email, or via text message.

Sharing music on Google Plus will include the ability to listen or buy:

Sharing books can be done while reading from any page:

Watching a movie or reading an e-book can continue seamlessly across all of these:

To date, a few industry analysts have been hinting that Google Plus suffers from a lack of use by the over 10 million registered users.  With the implementation of Google Play, and the limited sharing available, it seems like Google is devising a strategy to boost interaction within Google Plus.  It also encourages users to be logged into their Google accounts from multiple devices, which can have an affect on how search engine results appear, and offer more opportunities to +1 content on the web.  Overall this change in the android market has many underlying benefits for all of Google’s latest products.

March 19 2012

Pinterest has a New Design

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Pinterest released a new page design for profile pages this week that will be advantageous for both piners and businesses.  The new design highlights the user profile in a large header and has added more connection options for a user to populate.  The board’s image preview has gotten an update, along with the ability to arrange the boards with a drag and drop feature, so you can organize what boards will appear above the fold.   They have also improved functionality by moving main navigation elements and activity to a single bar just below the profile header.

This is an example from a recent blog post with the previous profile landing page design.

This is the new profile landing page for Harrods after the design release today.

Profile Dashboard:

  • New Profile Header contains social sharing icons and a new location icon that populates information provided in the profile settings.
  • Activity with the boards and pins you create is now highlighted in a right side container.
  • Stats/ Navigation of boards, pins, likes, and activity is now organized into a single bar below the header making it more accessible. The follow all (boards) button is front and center.

Board’s New Design:

  • Name of board will show 22 characters before truncating the text and is hyperlinked.
  • The board image is now using the most recent pin to the board as the larger thumbnail and then four smaller thumbnail previews of what is also pinned inside.  At this time you can’t adapt how this image is created, it is based on recent posts.
  • The stats for the board are also clearly defined above the image, showing how many pins are available in each board.
  • The large follow button below the image will follow only that individual board when selected.

Pinterest is making a more business friendly push toward offering more pronounced brand exposure with the new header design.  By also adapting the navigation on a page, it has created a more functional environment for members to interact with. They will find it is easier to edit, manage, and organize boards, and learn about other profiles, by easily noting the page stats and viewing recent activity of pins.   As more businesses start to become early adaptors of this social sharing platform, we will explore the campaigns and marketing strategies making it a successful endeavor for them.  If you haven’t gotten a Pinterest account yet, we recommend posting to accounts (Facebook/Twitter) requesting an invite from a friend/follower, rather than requesting an account from Pinterest – which can take weeks with no response.

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