Thursday, April 14, 2011

What do people find when they Google you?

The internet. What did we do before the internet? Lets all think back to a time when you wanted to find out some piece of information and there was no where to Google it. Maybe you had to get out a reference book, use the yellow pages or call a few people to find out. Maybe you had to (GASP!) just not know the answer.

We are in an age now where the internet provides instant gratification. Want to know who sang the song you danced to at your senior prom in 1972? BAM! Google it. Trying to research a company you are going to meet with? BAM! LinkedIn. Want to go see a movie? BAM! There's an app for that. You can find out literally almost anything with a quick type in a search bar and get more information than you ever wanted. 

So what are people finding when they google you or your company? Do you have a Website? A Facebook? A LinkedIn page? 

I am in the midst of planning my wedding in November and was recently perusing the web for dessert vendors.  I was COMPLETELY shocked at the low number of bakeries that actually had Web sites or even Facebook pages. How are these people getting business? When a business doesn't have a Web site or Facebook I immediately think something shady is going on.  I contacted several companies (some I had to actually call!) and discussed their services. I found myself judging the ones without an online presence much more harshly than the ones with a simple Web site or Facebook page. They must not actually be a bakery if they don't have a Web site. They must do enough business to afford hiring a Web designer. Are they even professional enough to trust to come through for my wedding?!

Chances are these are unfair judgements. Their baked goods and professionalism may even be greater than the bakeries that have an online presence. They may be older and more experienced bakers who just don't think of the Web the same way I do.

But these are the times we are living in. If you don't have a Web site or Facebook page for your business, how do you expect people to find you? The internet has taught us that we have full access to any information we want 24/7. All we have to do is type it into the search engine. 

Make it easy for your potential clients to find you. Have an easy to navigate Web site that lists all of your contact information. Create a Facebook page and keep it updated with pictures, content and interesting posts that people care about. The time and money invested will be well worth it.


Friday, February 11, 2011

Big Changes Look Promising for Fan Pages

Good morning! Facebook rolled out their new Fan Pages today and I think they look great and allow for greater interaction on Facebook from companies. My favorite change is the ability to interact as your business. So as Twigg Marketing I can go on to my favorite paper vendors fan page and give them some feedback on my latest delivery. This is a huge step for businesses to be able to interact on a whole new level on Facebook. Here are the additional changes: 

  • Interact as you or the fan page-go to account on the right side of your screen. You can choose to interact as you or your fan page. When you are in fan page mode you can comment as the fan page and like other fan pages as the fan page. So instead of Kristin Andrews commenting on ClientX's web site, Twigg Marketing can. 
  • Photos at the top- the most recent photos you added to your Fan Page will now be displayed at the top of page
  • Notifications- When you have selected to interact as the fan page (again, account-use facebook as page) you will get notifications of new "likes", comments and interactions. This is just like you get on your personal pages now. 
  • Wall filters-Your fan page can show "posts by everyone" or "post by page" so you can choose if the people that "like" you can show up on the wall
  • Email notifications: You can opt to receive notifications when people post or comment on your fan page
  • Featured Pages and admins-You can show pages you like or admins of the page to any one who visits the page
  • Mutual connections: When people visit your fan page, they can see who they "like" that you "like"
  • Navigation-This is the biggest visual change, I think. All of the tabs from the top of the page are now under the profile pic on the left. Easy to navigate, will take some time to get used to. 
  • Profile picture size- The profile picture size for Pages has been adjusted from 200x600 to 180x540.

If you have any questions about any of the changes or Facebook fan pages in general, feel free to leave me a comment or shoot me an email 


Thursday, January 6, 2011

How to NOT be a Rotary Phone

Have you ever made that rolling down the window motion at anyone under 15? Have you ever turned to a teenager and told them to get the phone book? What about those pictures from Christmas? Ask your nephew if he has gotten them developed, see what kind of look he gives you.

An article came out yesterday titled Things Babies Born in 2011 Will Never Know and it really got me thinking. Not really about babies born in 2011 and what they will never know, but about babies born in 2011 and what they WILL know.  Assuming they go to college and graduate in four years, they will be entering the workplace in 2033.  They will have never lived without the internet, never done a research project without Google, always had a Facebook account and have had cell phone since they were 6. Paper will be obsolete to them. MY paper day planner will make me a dinosaur to them.

I consider myself a pretty tech savvy woman. (I have a Mac Book Pro, okay?!) I help businesses learn how to use social media, so I have to stay on top of trends more than your average joe. But thinking about those 6th graders with their iPhones and their Twitter accounts makes me feel so...old and obsolete. They know about things that I can't even list on here because I have no idea they exist! They have never had to really learn to use an iPhone, or a computer or Facebook. They just KNOW.

So, what do I do? How do I keep my job and my business safe from these iPad-using, ebill-paying kids who have will never have to use a rotary phone? So glad you asked, I have a few ideas:

1)Stay on top of trends and adopt the ones that make sense for your business and your clients- Not every gadget, social media site, software, hardware, etc is going to make sense for every business. Take the time to know what is out there, but only use what is efficient and effective for growing your business and serving your clients.

2)Keep what works for you- I use a paper day timer. Thats right, I said it. I know it doesn't make me look cool and sometimes it makes me look downright out of date, but it works for me. I had to ask myself, would I rather look cool or have the peace of mind that comes with doing what works for me? Cool never wins.

3)Keep an open mind- As your business evolves, what works for you may evolve too. I used to scoff at LinkedIn Groups. Until I got a call from someone who had read my blog on there and needed my services and then I got another call and another... Somethings may work better than you think they will, if only you would give them a fair chance. If they work, great! If not, at least you tried.

So, to wrap up: try new things, explore new technologies, stay on top of trends and do what works for you. Make THAT your 2011 resolution!


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

2010: A Big Year for Me, Social Media and Mark Zuckerburg

2010 has been a huge year for me, both professionally and personally. I quit my full time, stable marketing job to pursue a side project full time and turned it into Twigg Marketing. I named it, built it a Web site and brought on new clients. I struggled with staying motivated, working from home and having no co-workers to distract me (except my insane dogs, who are a HUGE distraction). I also got engaged to the best man in the whole world. Basically, its gonna be  a tough year to top.

2010 has also been a huge year for social media, especially for Facebook, especially for Mark Zuckerburg.  He was named Time Magazines Person of the Year, had a movie made(roughly) about his rise to fame, and is now rolling around in bed full of money.

What else happened in social media this year? The ipad, the iphone 4, the android, "checking in" on your social media platforms, what seems like 23 different Facebook interfaces, the oldest Facebook user turned 103, countless celebrities made fools of themselves. The list goes on.

2010 was also a huge year for businesses to get further involved in social media. Small companies finally made fan pages, large companies got serious with their strategy, EVERYONE is beginning to see it as a value add to their marketing plan. But, we are all still learning. Here is a chart of the biggest mistakes being made with social media by marketers.

So, to review: I have had a phenomenal year, social media has had a phenomenal year, Mark Zuckerburg has had a phenomenal year.  Businesses are still learning how to use social media effectively to grow their businesses. All we can do, in 2011 and beyond, is use social media to grow, make new connections, build our brands and, hopefully, make our bank accounts look a little more like Zuckerburg's.

Happy Holidays everyone!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Social Network- My insight into the movie

Yesterday I took the afternoon off to partake in some carrot cake and movie watching with my mom. Since the movie was about Facebook, one of the first big social networks, I decided to call it "research."

A brief synopsis: After getting the boot from his girlfriend, Zuckerberg gets drunk and angry and creates, a Web site that lets users pick the hottest between two Harvard girls' pictures (which he cleverly steals from various Harvard house's facebooks). This eventually evolves into The Facebook. The movie implies that he stole the idea from 3 other Harvard undergrads who wanted him to help them create ConnectU, a college based social network for Harvard. So the movie rapidly switches between the law suit with these 3 guys,  a law suit with the other Facebook founder, Eduarodo Saverin and the time that The Facebook was being created and founded. Zuckerberg is portrayed the whole movie as a smart aleck, sarcastic, selfish, manipulative genius.

Three issues that surround the movie:
1) Is it true? 
This movie is based on a book (The Accidental Billionaires) which is written based on information from many source, one of which(the main one) is scorned Facebook CFO, Eduardo Saverin. One of which is NOT Mark Zuckerberg. This means the book and movie are largely and admittedly based on speculation, blog posts, second hand information and first hand information from a scorned partner. Not exactly the best sources for the truth. One big possible discrepancy in the book and movie is the big breakup between Zuckerberg and his girlfriend that prompts him to start Facemash and eventually Facebook. Some say he was dating someone well before and well into the founding of Facebook. If that is true, it pretty much undermines the entire "angry coding to be popular and get revenge" aspect the entire movie is based on.

Since many of the large events in the movie/book were based on very public events, they can be recounted with court documents and investigative reports. Unfortunately this also means if you kept up with the lawsuits and controversy surrounding the beginnings of Facebook, you have already seen the movie.

2) Is is sexist?
I recently read a piece talking about how sexist this movie was because it did not have any brainy female characters who were central to the plot. I beg to differ. This movie did have its fair share of pretty, shiny, groupie females, but its a true story and they are there for a reason. There was a little extranous half-naked-girl dancing, but that also was just there to make a point. Zuckerberg and Saverin were not cool, they didn't go to parties, they didn't have girlfriends and no one at Harvard wanted them. Then, they made Facebook and girls did like them and want to.... hang out with them. Historically and factually there were no women working in Zuckerberg's dorm room writing the first code for Facebook. Please don't patronize women by throwing in a few funky female coders. 2/4 of the lawyers in the movie were smart, well spoken, strong women who kept their clothes on for the entire movie. That is more than you can say for most movies about college aged men. 

3)Where is Mark Zuckerberg?
Since this movie is written with no input from Mark Zuckerberg and no real input from anyone who had not sued Mark Zuckerberg, there is no real insight into Mark Zuckerberg that is legitimate. Lets hear Zuckerberg's side of the story. I want some kind of first person narrative from him! Oh thats right, he is too busy running a 500,000,000 member social network worth 25 billion dollars. 

So, in short, if you have any interest in social media, society, communities, relationships, business, sales, people, money or the future, see this movie. Even if you care about none of those things it will make you think. It made me think about what I was doing in college while these guys were building a multi-billion  dollar empire...


Monday, September 27, 2010

Facebook Firings: Fair? Maybe. Frequent? Increasingly.

Two weeks I wrote a post advising employees and employers to really think about what social media sites are saying about them (Would you do a beer bong in a bikini at the office?). The response I received on this blog and on sites such as LinkedIn ranged from calling me "Big Brother" to completely agreeing. My personal stance on this matter is not significant; the proof is in the pudding:

According to a 2009 study of US companies, 8% had fired someone due to post on a social networking site, up from only 4% in 2008.
Want to know how to avoid the chopping block? Follow these simple steps. It may all seem like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised how many people break these rules:
1) Everyone company should have a social media policy in place:
Set expectations! If you fire someone because they talked trash about a client on Twitter, you have a signed document saying they are aware of your expectations and the consequences of them not being met.
2) Pretend Facebook is real life:
Confusing, I know. People see your Facebook. People who know people, who know people, who know your boss. Even if your boss is 92 and has never heard of social media and even if you are only friends with your husband, dog, best friend and grandma. What you are saying is public information. Grandma may know your 92 year old boss and may yell at him for making you work nights at your "suck-fest" of a job.
3) Represent yourself:
Like I said, it’s all public information. You are sharing your status or update with AT LEAST your entire friends list. Would you stand in front of 200 people from elementary school, friends of kids, kids of friends, coworkers and family members and announce that you don't like your job, your boss smells like cheese, your clients suck and you are currently drunk at the office?
4) Use your powers for good, not evil:
For every horror story about getting fired, caught, written up, I can tell you 27 stories about individuals and businesses who have increased leads, built brands, made sells and provided excellent customer service using social networking sites. Make good use of your time and resources; don't waste it complaining about your client from hell. We all have them and they are NOT that interesting.

Check out these unfortunate tales of companies and people who didn't head my amazing advice:
Facebook page by people who have been fired because of Facebook (it’s like a depressing support group)

Cop goes to stripper car wash in his cop car, gets fired after posting pic on Facebook

Waiter/actor Tweets gossip to 22 followers, gets fired

Obviously these are some extreme examples used to make a point...AND the point is: exercise discretion and think about what your posts are saying about you, your family, your friends and the people you work with and for. Use your brain.


PS. If you must publicly rant, do so on an anonymous (and funny) site such as You can also just visit that sight to feel better about your employment situation.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Would you do a beer bong in a bikini at the office?

Picture it: 
Beth is a top sales performer at your company, Paper To Go. She is "friends" on Facebook with all 9 of your employees and  does a stellar job of building external and internal relationships by planning and inviting people to company events using Paper To Go's Facebook page.  She has a "company events" photo section on Flikr that makes all employees appear professional and yet, fun and relatable. She has sealed many deals by building great relationships with clients and vendors on Twitter. She recently recruited your number one sales person through a LinkedIn group.

She also posts daily photos of herself in sexy clothing and sometimes lingerie. Her current Facebook status says she is "Playin' hooky and getting her drink on!" She has recently posted a message on her assistants Facebook page saying he is looking "so so sexy" in his recent photo.

Is she sexually harassing your other employees or your clients with her near nude photos and sexual posts? Do you have to fire her for saying she playing hooky? Do you want to have to fire your top performer for something she is doing in her personal time? At the same time, do you want your clients know THIS is who is handling their account?

In the year 2020 there will be 18 year olds going to college who have never lived in a world where social media networks didn't exist. In 2025, they will be 23, fresh out of college and looking for a job. They will have never lived in a world where their Friday night parties didn't show up on Facebook. They will know that no matter who they are texting or where they are posting, their moms, grandmas, bosses and friends could have access to it with in mere minutes. It will be ingrained in their brains that calling their coworkers a name, saying they hate their jobs or talking bad about a client WILL be seen, shared, reposted and they WILL be punished for it.

In 2010 people of all ages have email, texting, Facebook pages, Flicker sites and more. Their first instinct is not to think about where the information they are divulging is going, just that for the first time, they can be heard: loud and clear.

Do you have the policies and training in place to ensure that your employees are using even personal social media sites in a way that represents yours company well and protects you and your employees? Please consider a social media policy that clearly and legally spells out the rules, guidelines and ramifications for content on professional AND personal social media sites.

Also,  please take off the Facebook picture of you in a bikini doing a beer bong. Your grandmother DOES NOT want to see it.

Happy Tuesday,