Monthly Archives: June 2010

32 Ways to Make Your Blog Suck Less

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Here’s a great video I found on SLIDESHARE that gives you some great ideas on how to make your blog “suck less”.  Isn’t this really what we all want to know? 

Personal Branding: 5 Secrets from Guy Kawasaki

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Personal branding is a hot concept, which is both good news and bad. For fans of the idea, its ascendancy means more people can benefit from presenting themselves in a compelling way. For those trying to stand out from the personal branding herd, however, it could be a problem.

With everyone and their mother trying to make a name for themselves, it’s harder and harder to be heard through all the noise. To do so you need expert help, and for top tips there are few better qualified to help than entrepreneur and uber-blogger Guy Kawasaki. Recently on Dan Schawbel’s Personal Branding Blog, Pete Kistler dug into Kawasaki’s book Art of the Start and outlined five secrets of personal branding success he found there:

  • Make Meaning, Not Money. If you’re into personal branding with the goal of making money, stop now. You will attract the wrong kind of people into your life. Instead, start with the goal of making meaning. What better way to align all your actions with your long-term goals. What kind of meaning will you make? Kawasaki suggests two ideas for inspiration: 1) right a wrong, or 2) prevent the end of something good. What will you do to make the world a better place?
  • Make a Mantra. In three words or less, what are you all about? Kawasaki believes that mission statements are useless. He says, make a mantra instead. FedEx stands for “peace of mind.” What do you stand for, in the simplest terms?
  • Polarize People. Personal branding pundits often advise against being a “jack of all trades,” or a generalist that isn’t very good at something specific. What does Guy believe? He suggests being great for some people rather than trying to please everyone. Do not be afraid to make people react strongly for or against you. As my former business partner used to remind me, you’re not doing something right unless you’re pissing someone off. That doesn’t mean be a jerk. That means just don’t try to appeal to all people, or you’ll end up a mile wide and an inch deep, mediocre to everyone.
  • Find a Few Soul Mates. We’re all on this journey together. It’s silly to think we are alone in our careers or in our life. Find people who balance you. Then make time for them. If you’re busy, make plans in advance so you have to schedule around them. You’re only one person, so surround yourself with people whose skills round you off.
  • Don’t Let the Bozos Grind You Down. Not everyone is going to like you. Not everyone will always agree with you. That’s a fact of life. So don’t let criticism or doubters bring you down. As you live out your mantra, it’s your responsibility to be strong in the face of “no,” and “you can’t do that.” Guy says, ignore people who say you won’t succeed. Use negative words as motivation. Prove people wrong.

Courtesy of BNET.

How to Make Change Easy

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We all know change is hard — and so people resist it. Right?

Well, maybe not always. Chip Heath, a professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, gave an insightful presentation on that theme earlier this month at the World Innovation Forum conference in New York. Heath, who coauthored the books Made to Stick and Switch with his brother Dan, started his presentation with the conventional business wisdom that people resist change — and then quickly pointed out exceptions to that conventional wisdom.
Two of the notable exceptions, according to Heath? Marriage and having children. Both are dramatic changes — but people celebrate them happily.

Said Heath: “Who would sign up to work for a boss that phoned you up four times a night for trivial administrative duties? ” And yet, many couples nonetheless “sign up” to have babies. “Change is not always hard, because there are some big changes that we embrace,” Heath observed.

Why, then, do people often resist organizational change? Heath explained a number of principles about making change easier — and one of them involves engaging and motivating people’s emotional side.

By way of illustration, he offered a very funny parody of how a marriage proposal would sound if it were introduced like many business change initiatives are — complete with a PowerPoint presentation including cost-saving benefits expected from the marriage, such as savings on kitchen condiments. “How many successful marriage proposals would we make by making an intellectual argument?” Heath asked.

Courtesy of MIT Sloan Managment Review.

Top 10 Twitter Tutorials on You Tube

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Here’s a great collection of YOU TUBE videos about TWIITER written by Pam Dyer in Social Media Today.

“We all know that YouTube is a treasure trove of entertainment, with endless hours of Justin Bieber crooning to tweens and cats playing the piano. But it’s also a terrific resource for learning — there are helpful how-tos about a wide range of topics that do a great job of breaking down complex subjects into visuals that are easy to understand. Users have posted thousands of tutorials ranging from animal care to everyone’s favorite microblogging tool, Twitter.

Whether you want to get your mom started on Twitter or want the scoop on some of Twitter’s best desktop apps and how to use Twitter for brand building, these YouTube videos will keep you entertained while educating you about various aspects of the Twitterverse.”

CLICK HERE to see the whole list.

SNL Kagan Forecasts Ad Recovery

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Here’s a positive prediction for all of us who make a living in media (either “new” or “old”) from MEDIA DAILY NEWS:

SNL Kagan, the Charlottesville, VA-based media researcher, says TV stations will climb 14.3% in 2010 to $19.8 billion — rising from $17.3 billion in 2009, the lowest TV ad revenue total in 15 years.

Adding in new retransmission fees, total TV station revenue is expected to grow to $20.9 billion in 2010 and $25.4 billion by 2016.

Radio will also make gains — some 6.4% to $17.1 billion. This boost follows a drop of 17.7% to $16.0 billion in 2009. Advertising revenue from online businesses will push up total revenue for radio. SNL Kagan says radio stations will climb 15% to $552 million. In six years, radio will grow to $19.8 billion.

The media company says investors have noticed the major progress in ad growth. This year, radio station stocks are up 36%, and TV stocks are 26% higher, year-to-date.

“The bounce-back in ad revenues, combined with other positive trends, such as growing digital dollars, have reassured investors,” stated Robin Flynn, senior analyst with SNL Kagan.

Rise of the Digital C-Suite

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Here is an interesting article and graph from Forbes.com on how CEO’s now filter and find info.

Summary: How do C-suite and top-level executives at the largest U.S. companies locate business information? The perception may be that they’re not online, but the reality is that they find the Internet to be their most valuable resource.

In fact, how they take advantage of Internet tools depends a great deal on the executive’s age and work experience. This study identifies the differences between those top executives whose careers have coincided with the rise of the PC and the Internet with their older counterparts. These younger executives, who are leading the charge into the C-suite, locate information for decision-making themselves, search online frequently, are interested in video, and are open to the latest online technologies.

“The Rise of the Digital C-suite” is based on an exclusive survey of 354 top executives at large U.S. companies with annual sales of greater than $1 billion. The study identifies unique generational differences between different aged executives, while examining where they go for information, how they want it filtered and delivered, and what online technologies they’re willing to embrace.

To download a pdf of the study, please fill out the following information. The report will appear in a new window. If you experience any trouble, please send an email to: insights@forbes.com.

How YouTube Views Copyright

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Margaret Gould Stewart, YouTube’s head of user experience, talks about how the ubiquitous video site works with copyright holders and creators to foster (at the best of times) a creative ecosystem where everybody wins.

Courtesy of TED.com.