In conclusion…

•March 7, 2009 • Leave a Comment

On the first day of my New Media Drivers License class I was overwhelmed and out-of-the-loop, to the say the least.  On that day I realized that I wasn’t as up to date on social media as I previously thought.  I knew that if I intended to compete against my much younger colleagues I would need to pay close attention this semester and take advantage of the knowledge our instructor, Derek Mehraban was passing along.  Now here it is, almost the end of class and I am one presentation away from obtaining my New Media Drivers License.  In my presentation I intend to include several social media topics including (but not limited to):

  • Google! Google! Google!
  • How to set up a WordPress blog and keep it relevant and interesting
  • How to establish your presence in the social networking world through Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter
  • Search Engine Optimization and social bookmarking on Digg and Del.icio.us
  • The New Rules of Marketing & PR
  • How to write and submit a FREE press release

And, of course, my presentation will follow the Zen Approach, as outlined by Garr Reynolds in Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery

The New Rules of Marketing & PR

•February 28, 2009 • 1 Comment

David Meerman Scott

David Meerman Scott’s The New Rules of Marketing & PR has been hailed as the end-all, be-all of new age marketing and I have to agree.  After reading this book as a requirement for my New Media Drivers License course at MSU I am now convinced that Scott is one of the most influential and knowledgeable marketers of our time.  This book is not only thought provoking but it also offers readers insight into the worlds of marketing and PR.  Scott gives marketers how to “leverage the potential of Web-based communication to build a personal link with their market.”   He discusses the major topics of new media marketing including blogging, search engine optimization, podcasts, social networking sites and much more.  The book is an easy, quick read and one that provides simple solutions to complex problems (i.e. you have never ever heard of SEO, but you walk away from this book understanding and being able to use it yourself).  I highly suggest this to any marketer who wants to make a name for themselves in this ever-changing industry.  Adopt Scott’s new rules today and start a profitable relationship with your buyers!

In order to encourage marketers, of all ages, to pick up a copy of this book I posted a press release on MyFreePR.com.  I also bookmarked his website on del.icio.us  and Digg.com.

To obtain more information about David Meerman Scott visit his website or his blog.

Enroll today to obtain your New Media Driver’s License!

•February 21, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Drivers LicenseAre you interested in social media marketing?  New Media?  Social Networking sites?  Are you looking to get ahead in your career in the advertising and marketing industry?  Do you have experience in the industry but are not as update to date with new technology as the younger applicants you are competing against?  If you answered “yes” to any of the questions above, then I suggest you immediately sign up for the New Media Driver’s License course at Michigan State University. This course is taught by Derek Mehraban, CEO of Ingenex Digital Marketing, and teaches students the intricacies of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, search engine optimization and much more!  I, like you, have been in the advertising industry for 7+ years.  I have the experience, however I couldn’t compete with the knowledge about new media my younger co-workers brought to the table. I knew direct mail and lifecycle maketing like the back of my hand but I couldn’t tell you the first thing about Google AdWords, building a profile on LinkedIn or using search engine optimization to drive more people to your website….UNTIL NOW!  I am a student in the New Media Driver’s License course and I am slowly starting to become proficient in all of the aforementioned subject areas.  Don’t wait another day….enroll now.  I sure am glad I did and I know that it will payoff in the longrun.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for dummies

•February 14, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Search engine optimization (SEO) can be defined as improving your website’s searchability, and performance, on search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft.  Another way to think of SEO, according to Derek Mehraban’s article SEO Guide Basics is to:

“Think of Google as reading your web page, similar to how you read a book.  Top to bottom and left to right.  In order for Google to rank your site (or individual page from your site) and to be found on search engines, it is important to pay attention to how you write and organize your page.  A strong headline, relevant subheads (h1 tags) , good content related to both your headline and subhead, links that help tell the story, and a clear and concise ending to the page that reinforces what you want to be found for in the first place.”

I must admit that I was a “dummy” and had no idea what SEO was until this assignment.  Therefore, I found Google’s SEO Starter Guide to be extremely helpful in breaking down the in’s and out’s of search engine optimization.  According to the aforementioned starter guide, the steps to achieving optimization for your website are:

  • Create unique, accurate page titles
  • Make use of the “description” meta tag
  • Improve the structures of your URLs
  • Make your site easy to navigate
  • Offer quality content and services
  • Write better anchor text
  • Use heading tags appropriately
  • Optimize your use of images
  • Make effective use of robots.txt
  • Be aware of rel=”nofollow” for links
  • Promote your website in the right ways
  • Make use of free webmaster tools

Aaron Wall, blogger, also discusses the importance of the topics above, as well as link building (by searching social news/bookmarking sites like Digg or Del.icio.us to see which stories related to your topic become popular), brand building and viral marketing strategies for your website.  These tools not only help reinforce your brand image but they also improve your lead quality and conversion rates.  Wall also suggests your measure your SEO results in order to gauge the effectiveness of your campaign.  I imagine a good site to use for this is Google Analytics.

One last thing to note: the SEO market is ever-changing so it is imperative to stay up to date!

Social Media’s “Big 3”

•February 7, 2009 • Leave a Comment

My assignment for my New Media Drivers License class this week involves creating profiles on the three biggest social media networking sites: Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.  Thankfully, I already have profiles on all three sites and finally feel like I am one tiny step ahead of the game.  I must admit, however, that my LinkedIn and Twitter profiles both leave something to be desired, as I haven’t dedicated much time to networking or “tweeting” up to this point.

I only recently joined Facebook and I am enjoying reconnecting with old friends and colleagues, looking at their photos and finding out about their growing families and exciting career moves.  I am still a little leery of sharing too much personal information online but I am getting better.  In fact, I have even started posting some photos on my profile.  If you haven’t created a profile on Facebook yet, I highly suggest you join today! 

LinkedIn is by far my favorite social media site and the site that will continue to be the most useful for me in years to come.  If you are not familiar with LinkedIn users create a profile (basically you upload an electronic version of your resume) and begin connecting with professional contacts.  LinkedIn is a great way to network with professionals in your field and/or area of interest, search for job openings, and request recommendations from people you have worked with in the past.  This site is a great tool, especially for those searching for new opportunities in this seemingly “stale” job market.

Twitter is another popular social media site that allows users to update their status, in 140 words or less, on a regular basis. I think the more interesting and useful part of Twitter is that it allows users to “follow” each other and get immediate updates on current events.  If you are currently on Twitter feel free to follow me… but I must forewarn you…I am not very good at updating my status.

Google AdWords

•January 29, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This was the first time I have used Google AdWords.  Actually, it was the first time I had even heard of Google AdWords and I was pleasantly surprised to discover it is quite easy to use.  The step-by-step enrollment process was quick and painless.  The hardest part was writing an ad to promote my blog and then deciding on clever, specific keywords.  The ad I finally settled on is as follows:

MSU blogger discusses the hype &
stigma of New Media Marketing
stacydanna.wordpress.com

I tried to incorporate keywords into my ad however I found it difficult due to the limited amount of text characters allowed.  I used Google’s Keyword Search Tool to help me decide which keywords would be most applicable to my blog, as well as which keywords would generate the most impressions and, hopefully, clicks.  The keywords I bid on were:

  • Stacy Danna
  • first time MSU blogger
  • internet marketing
  • Michigan State University
  • Stacy Danna’s New Media Blog
  • New Media Drivers License
  • New Media Inauguration
  • New Media Marketing
  • Social Networking sites
  • hype of new media marketing
  • stigma of new media marketing

After activating my account I began searching for my keywords on Google but was disappointed when my ad did not appear…EVER!  This was the case for several days and I am sure the reason is two-fold.  First, I set my account up with only a $50 budget and, second, I am sure my keywords are too general and not nearly as specific as they need to be.  However, with practice I am sure I will become a keyword “guru” and will have much more success in the future.  Unfortunately, because I can not get my ad to appear on Google I cannot include a screenshot in this post (although I will keep trying and include it if it finally appears).

My overall impression of Google AdWords is that it is a quick, easy and effective way for small businesses to target their consumers.  It is also inexpensive, flexible and allows users to change their ad and/or keywords whenever they want and as many times as they want.

Google…More Than Just a Search Engine

•January 23, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Up until a week ago I thought Google was just a search engine…that’s it!  The only time I use is when I want to look something up but don’t know, or can’t remember, the correct web address.  Or, when I want to know if there is a certain type of store in my area.  Who knew that Google actually offers several free applications to anyone willing to try them out including, Gmail; Google Analytics; Google Earth; Google Groups; Google Calendar and, my favorite, Google Reader.

Google ReaderGoogle Reader allows you to read news articles from various sources all in one place…you no longer need to spend time surfing cnn.com, wsj.com and freep.com…you can have them all fed into your Google Reader profile.  When you add your favorite websites to your profile,  Google Reader automatically pulls in the top news stories from those sites.

Additionally, the What’s in “Your Stuff”? feature allows you to create and share articles with your friends.  You can share items you have read, share anything from around the web by using the Note in Reader bookmarklet or just share your thoughts using the Notes feature.

Another feature worth mentioning is the “Starred Items” feature which allows you to save your favorite articles, in case you want to go back and read them later…no more searching the archives.

One feature I could do without is the “Trends” feature.  I don’t have a need to know what types of articles I have read in the last day, week, or month, how many items I have shared or starred articles or what time of day I tend to read the articles on my profile.  A person who enjoys statistics would probably find this feature more useful than an advertising person like myself.

Overall, I think this is a useful feature and I will probably keep using it, at least in the short-term.