Posts Tagged ‘social media’

postheadericon Tweeting Without Meaning

I read an interesting article today regarding the importance of social media in the new world of search engine optimization and website rankings.  It has been by and large confirmed that social media is quickly becoming a necessity for all companies if you want to stay at the “top of the charts,” so to speak.  So now, you have a Facebook account, a Twitter account, you probably have your own blog with WordPress or Blogger, maybe you are trying out the new Google Plus, and you have a company LinkedIn page.

What next?

You need something to write about.  Having these accounts without having any content is like fishing without a fishing pole.  You went to the lake and expected the fish to jump out of the water and into your hands, but that isn’t the way it works.  You need a pole, some bait, and you need to be in the right time and the right place.  Sometimes that means waiting with your line in the water for a long time, but if you take it out, you will never catch anything.

However, there is a difference between posting something meaningful and something pointless.  If you are only using your Facebook account to say “Check out our new Product!”, you probably won’t get many followers.  The reason is that what you are saying is boring.  I don’t mean that as an offense, but rather to remind you of what Facebook was created for.  It is for sharing stories and interesting tidbits.  It is for making you laugh, cry, or angry because of what someone else said.  It is supposed to spark emotions in the reader, and that just isn’t going to happen with words like “Check out our new Product!”

Where is the laughter?  Where are the tears?

You have to approach social media marketing the way that we have been approaching traditional marketing for the last century.  Make it interesting.  Make it memorable.  People will remember it better and come back to you more often.  Lure them in with stories of other customers.  Show them interesting pictures or funny videos of someone who has used your product or service.  Once you have baited them, reel them in.  And once you have caught them, turn their experience into the stories you use to lure in the next customers, thus creating and completing the social media marketing cycle.

This is how you use social media and be meaningful about what you post, while driving customers to you.  Hey, if you are still reading, then it obviously works, doesn’t it?

postheadericon The New Google Social Media: “Plus” or Minus

Well, it’s official.  Google has finally rolled out their new social media platform, Google Plus.  In a blatant attempt at coveting the mass market appeal that Facebook has been garnering since its inception 7 years ago, we now see Google trying to get into the social media game.  The platform, while still in its infancy, was started with nothing less than a full throttle exposure by Google, utilizing every aspect of its web presence to reinforce the potential uses and powers of the new social media outlet.  The three most powerful features, or perhaps most important when it comes to search engine optimization and web marketing, are the social media pages, the “+1” button, and the search engine integration.

Social Media Page

From a glance, Google Plus has all the basic features you would expect with social media these days.  There is a place for basic information, your profile, photos of you, contact information, and a space to say how you are doing (the basic equivalent of Facebook status or a Twitter tweet).  There is one minor difference in that when you are messaged, you are actually emailed (using your gmail account, of course), instead of the message being stored somewhere else.  In addition, you are able to easily search for people to add t your circle of friends based on pasty emails or using Google’s own search engine.  The biggest difference is the addition of the Google Plus Circles, which is how Google organizes your friends and family.  Facebook has similar organizational groups, but Google actually forces you to put all of your friends in a specific circle (even if it is called “Friends”) which would differentiate them from your family, coworkers, etc.  This could be very useful for when you want to share something that perhaps you don’t want your family or your boss to see, but other than that it doesn’t really add much that I can see yet.


I mentioned in a previous post about the new +1 buttons that we are adding to all of our SEO clients pages.  The Google equivalent of a “Like” button, these buttons which are coded into the page help to both track who and how many people like a particular website, but also helps to bring inbound links into the page which increases the rankings of the site in search engines.  The biggest difference that I see between the way that Facebook did this and the way that Google is doing this is where the inbound links are going to be found.  For Facebook, this is was in a post made on the wall of the person that clicked the “like” button.  Whereas in Google, this is actually a separate tab, next to photos and basic info, that lists all the pages that particular person has +1’d.  The pages are listed in reverse chronological order so the first thing you see will be the person’s latest interest.

Search Engine Integration

Google’s new platform already proves that it has a significant amount of power behind it.  However, the real power behind the new social media platform is the integration with everything else that Google is already offering.  Google’s approach to business seems to be, if we can do 1 thing extremely well, we can probably do everything extremely well.  Oddly enough, they seem to be right for the most part.  From their original search engine to their power email solution, an internet browser, a smartphone operating system, and now its social media platform, there seems to be no end to what Google will do.  What makes it better is that everything is integrated.  On Google’s website now, you will see the +You button (which changes “You” to your first name when you are logged in) next to the web search bar.  From within the platform, you can use gmail to send messages, Picassa to share photos, and the search engine to find friends, and this is the tip of the iceberg for what I am sure Google will do.  This would make the new platform a very powerful tool in the internet marketing world, where social media has become the way businesses build reputation and create buzz about the company.  At the moment, it seems more geared towards individuals, but it is only a matter of time before Google branches out to businesses like Facebook has done.

What do you think?

We want to know you’re opinion about the changing social media environment and how Google Plus compares to Facebook.  Keeping in mind that it is still in beta and has not been finished yet (as if Facebook is ever actually finished either), what do our readers think?  Gives us a rating, 1-5, so we can find out how many people are using it and how they like it so far?

postheadericon Being “Like”‘d Helps Being Looked At

There was an interesting article I read some time ago about the benefits of social media marketing, with the use of Facebook in particular outlined in the article.  We have all seen the “Like” buttons on various websites that we have visited, as well as the Facebook “Pages” which form mini-websites of their own as well as powerful advertising tools.  Facebook can certainly be a powerful tool for increasing website traffic and search engine rankings.

The Facebook Page:

While Facebook was traditionally a way for individuals to connect with one another, Facebook needed a way to allow for groups and organizations to promote what they have on its site as well.  Hence the addition of the Facebook Pages.  These mini-advertising sites are helpful in that they form a bridge between your personal Facebook account and your company’s website.  While you are allowed to make posts on your Facebook page’s wall, thus proving how current and up-to-date you are, there is enough room for advertisements on your page that it is well worth the effort.  Plus, there are a million different places to put links back to your website, in addition to the Like button for the page, that helps bring in more people.  The more people “Like” your page, the more people will see and visit it and the more opportunities for you to get them to visit your main website and hence use your services.  It is all about a way in.

Facebook for your Site:

As much as you want people to Like your Facebook page, your actual website is even more important.  Many websites these days have embedded the code whereby people can actually Like your website itself.  They click on the button and the counter on your site goes up while a post appears on their Facebook wall telling the world that they liked it.  This means that on their wall, you now have an inbound link where their friends can see your website and have a reason to check it out.  That inbound link also works in search engine rankings.  Google counts every Like from a Facebook user as an inbound link and each inbound link will hep to boost your rankings in all the search engines.

postheadericon SEO – Where to start?

Search engine optimization is like pushing a heavy ball down a specific path.  Once you “get the ball rolling” so to speak, the momentum will help continue to push it forward.  However, when you are just starting out, it can be difficult to find your bearings.  The energy it takes to just get going past the point of inertia can seem daunting, so we’d like to take this time to give suggestions that anyone can do.

SEO can be an expanding spiral of growth if treated in the correct way.  The more people that visit your site, the better it will do in search engine rankings.  The better your site does in rankings, the more people will visit your site.  SEO strategies like keywords and video are all very important, but the main driving point in the beginning is just to get people to visit, and in this way it is fairly identical to marketing in the real world.

Friends Matter:

Sometimes it is who you know that counts.  Talk to your friends and recommend they go to your website.  Have them tell their friends about it.  Even if it only gets a few people to start visiting, it will create a trend.  While you are at it, talk to them about forming an online partnership.  We at ActiveNation have prided ourselves on linking to all of our clients websites, including Party Perfect, Diploma Company and Ross Locklear on our website, while they all have a link back to us on their website as their website developer/designer.  A link exchange, in which you put a link to your friend’s or client’s website on your own in return for them putting a link to your site on theirs, is a good way of increasing traffic to your site and is a free advertising tool.  The inbound link created on your friend’s site will also help to boost your website’s rankings.

Paper Pushers:

Once you have a website, put it everywhere.  On your advertisements, on your business cards, on the walls of your office for when people visit.  People are growing more an more used to using the internet for research on whatever company they are going to and one of the first websites they visit is the company’s own.  You can even use it to make your advertisement’s cheaper by ending with the words “Visit our website for more information.”  This means your advertisements are shorter and you are driving more people to your site, increasing your marketing reach and search rankings simultaneously.

Social Media Speaks Loudly:

These days, a large majority of the population has some social media account, be it twitter, facebook, or linkedin.  These allow you to post something for the whole world to see.  While creating your own page for your business can be helpful, it can also be detrimental if it is not constantly updated.  However, posting something on your personal account, such as a link to your website with a blurb like “Check out our new website” can be effective in driving online “friends” and visitors to your website.

postheadericon ActiveNation Returns Better Than Ever

We’re Back!

To our loyal readers, ActiveNation proudly returns to this blog after our months of being away. While we apologize for our lack of posts over these last few months, we would like to assure all of our followers that we are back from our hiatus.

In these last few months, we have been busy transitioning after our recent acquisition by Data Control, LLC, a local Richmond based database programming company that has been partnered with ActiveNation many times over the past years when we have needed each others’ services.

Now, as the two companies have merged into one, we have become a more efficient well-oiled machine that is ready to serve all of your search engine optimization, search engine marketing, pay-per-click management, and website development and maintenance needs and desires, as well as a variety of other programming services through our new parent company.


Moving Forward:

While we have been away, the world has kept turning.  The internet never stops changing, and so we must always be vigilant in our attempt to stay on top of the newest in internet trends.  While there isn’t enough space in this blog to go into detail about all the changes that have taken place, we wanted to list some of the topics to be covered in the upcoming posts, if only to whet your appetite.


The World Goes Mobile:

Smartphones have become the name of the game in the market of the modern age.  The internet is no longer limited to big bulky desktops or laptops where a local ethernet jack is readily available.  All of the world’s information now rests literally in the palm of our hand, and we must be prepared to face it.

Google Plus: The New Facebook?

Google has finally decided to get into the social media game with their new platform, Google Plus.  How will this affect the way we do business?  Is this the wave of the future or a fad that will fade into the background as quickly and quietly as myspace has over the past few years?

QR: Decoding the Trend:

If you have seen the square barcodes around, you know that these days people are being directed to websites and advertising material even when they are not surfing the web.  You could be walking around the local art museum or shopping mall, see one of these qr codes, scan it into your smartphone, and suddenly you are looking at the company’s specialized website.  How do we utilize this new trend in all of our marketing ideas?


It’s All About The Future

These topics and more are only the beginning of the latest in internet trends.  Internet marketing has become a whole new ballgame, and as we continue along the never-ending path towards website marketing, it will only get more exciting as the technology continues to radically change the way we do business everyday.

postheadericon How You Doin’ Twitter?

While Facebook is the reigning King of social media, it may need to make some room for another social network that’s gaining some momentum in the interactive race.  It’s no secret that Twitter has become an online phenomenon, I mean who doesn’t wake up first thing in the morning and check their Twitter time-line to see what they missed during their hours of slumber? It’s almost calming to know that much activity can still go on even when you’re not a part of it at that moment. It’s like the social network that never sleeps. But I digress…

Recently the Pew Research Center and the eMarketer conducted surveys and studies regarding Twitter’s current status in the digital world and have even made predictions regarding Twitter’s future. So how do you think the site did? I’ve included some of their statistics that may exhibit some astounding and surprising information about where the site currently is and where it could be in just a matter of a year.  Are we ready to turn over the crown to Twitter eventually?

One thing that can definitely be said is that Twitter is on a roll when it comes to overall earned revenue and even predicted increases in the network’s 2011 ad revenue. Just last year Twitter generated $45 million and is expected to make a huge jump by over $100 million this year.

The Pew Research Center has analyzed the typical Twitter user and their behavior when using the social site. Surprisingly despite the success Twitter has seen and will continue to see in ad spending, the percentages for the demographics that utilize the service were slimmer than I had imagined. In fact it seems that even though there are millions of people that sign up for the online social service only 8% of online adults said they do use Twitter, with 2% doing so on a typical day. The survey also exemplified that 74% of American adults are Internet users, which means that the Twitter cohort amounts to 6% of the entire adult population.

I would’ve thought those numbers would be bigger. But in due time I can only imagine how much these figures will increase within the next couple of years, especially considering the predictions being made regarding Twitter’s successful ad revenues and increasingly amount of accounts being opened each year. In fact at least 100 million accounts were opened just in the year 2010. Can you imagine by 2014 or 2015?

All we can say is stay tuned and keep a close observation on the evolution of social media. I have a feeling that these social networks will not only change the face of the internet and how we use it, but may even change the world. Imagine that.

postheadericon Interesting Online Marketing Trend Tidbits

I stumbled across some pretty intriguing information regarding anything and everything an online marketer would want to identify their typical consumer’s profile  and when targeting their ideal audience. Check out some of the interesting tidbits I collected while navigating through different online infographics. Hopefully this will help some of you on your journey to successful internet marketing and even more specifically social media marketing!


How Global Users Spend Their Time Online

  • Percentage of User’s Time Spent Online: 22% Social Media; 42% Viewing Content; 36% e-mail, e-commerce and other.
  • The average American spends up to 60 hours a month online which equates to 30 days a year.

via Visual Economics

via Marketing Pilgrim


  • 61% of adult internet users view videos online and 61% view online videos on a video sharing site.
  • The most common online video viewing and sharing age group is 18-29 at 78%, 30-49 age groups at 66% and 45% of 50+ ages watch videos online.
  • Men appear to watch more online videos than women. In fact 65% of men watch online videos while only 57% of women do.
  • The most popular age demographic in the blogosphere is the 35-44 age group with 28% and following closely behind at 25% are bloggers aged 25-34.
  • When it comes to what age group utilizes the internet the most, ages  18-29 spend more time online at 93%!

What do you think about some of these statistics?

postheadericon Get Your Website Buzzin’

Businesses are constantly trying to figure out the best ways to generate traffic to their website. With so many different outlets and resources offered out there, there’s no doubt you can attract visitors to your site, but which factors are consistent and the most effective? Social Media is a great resource when it comes to targeting different demographics that fit your ideal consumer profile. You can narrow anyone down based on age, sex, gender, location of residence, etc. so that you know who will benefit from your services more as opposed to others who wouldn’t care. This is also a great outlet to share information about your company, advertise and promote your site, and even offer incentives, specials, etc. to your fans.  Social media is the latest craze right now and it doesn’t look like it will slow down anytime soon, so jump on the bandwagon and give it a try! Don’t be afraid to engage with your friends/fans either. Consumers and potential patrons want to know that you care and want to know that they have voice within your brand. A creative website name and creative content will surely earn you high marks when it comes to your visitor and gaining their interest. You want to be able to capture consumer attention from the beginning and convince them that your brand is like no other; in fact it’s better than the others. I like to call it “sweet talk”, tell your consumers not only what they want to hear, but what they need to hear. Be honest but also a little entertainment can go a long way too. You also want to make sure you stick in their memory so the next time they want to go back to your site; they can remember your name. If you’re not sure exactly how to draw people to your site, or which sources would be beneficial for your niche business the best thing you can do is hire an expert. As skilled professionals, they can offer you more insight to who you should target and how to generate traffic to your site based on your key demographic. Not only that, but experts like Active Nation can manage your social media pages for you, update your blogs and analyze your website statistics to predict and monitor visitor behavioral trends. This will help you to know what works for your company and what doesn’t. Frankly, I would advise you to at least consult with an internet marketing expert either way so that you can weigh all of your options and know the best approach for your company to garner web traffic. You want to not only just attract new users to your site, but you also want to keep them coming back. Research all of the possible resources out there and make it work!

postheadericon A Peek Into Facebook’s Growth

Recently All Facebook posted this istrategylabs data. The data was apparently collected “directly from Facebook’s Social Ads system”. It’s basically information regarding different demographics of U.S. residents that are Facebook users. It’s a pretty interesting overview. What do you think about the info? Do you think this helps internet marketers with consumer targeting and online social media behavioral trends?

postheadericon Just Some Inspiration For Your “Addiction”

Are we really addicted to social media? That’s a question I’ve been asking myself for a while now. I mean think about it, every morning when you wake up what is the first thing you do? Update your Twitter? Check your Facebook? All of the above? During the course of your day how often do you login to your social media pages? Once, twice, twenty times? If so, then you just might have an addiction. But not all addictions are bad right? Or is the saying “too much of a good thing can’t be that good after-all” really being truthful?

I recently came across a pretty amusing and amazing video that pokes fun at the thought of social media addiction. Maybe this video can answer some of those questions and provide some kind of clarity on the borderline of addiction and obsession.