Posts Tagged ‘publishing’

Things I Got Wrong, and Things I Got Right in 2012

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

By Fauzia Burke

As we wrap up 2012 and start to plan for the New Year I wanted to review the things I got right and the things I didn’t. In the past few years, there have been so many changes in the book industry, and in technology, that sometimes my only guide has been my intuition. Fortunately, our missteps can often teach us more than flawless execution. So here are the lessons I have learned in 2012:

Why Press Release Didn’t Work For Us. Working as the President of an online public relations firm, I relied on press releases to get the attention of editors. Over time, however, I noticed that they didn’t seem to be working as they once did. One reason is that the “one pitch fits all” approach was not working online. Bloggers are unique and so are their interests. For example I hear people talking about mommy bloggers or book bloggers, but in truth those communities are made up of people with very different interests.

I took a huge leap of faith and decided to stop doing press releases. Instead of taking the time to write them, proof them, wait for approval, print them and stuff them, we took that time to talk to the editors/bloggers and invest the time in social media. I thought I would get push-back from clients, but once I explained why I was making the change they agreed with the approach.

I am happy to report that this change we got right. It was the right decision and we’re moving into 2013 with no intention of doing the traditional press releases.

Delegating Social Media. I thought outsourcing social media was always wrong. Although it is best to keep your hands in your own social media, the only way for it to be effective is if it is consistent. A writer’s life is not consistent, which means they are sometimes more active on social media than other times. Trying to do it all themselves can be distracting. Of course, it is crucial to delegate this responsibility to someone trustworthy. I would also suggest having clear goals and to monitor activities very closely.

For 2013, we are exploring and open to creating a hybrid system for our clients.

People like to follow people, not books. I thought book websites and book Facebook pages were a good idea. Remember the days of microsites? Today, I believe that the only websites, Facebook pages and Twitter handles should be in the author’s name, no matter how diverse their list of books and activities. I would advise against a title or book site because people follow people not books. Authors are most effective when they work to build their brand, and can increasingly build a loyal following when readers feel connected to them.

In 2013, we will move away from book related digital assets and focus more on the author’s brand.


Keep Learning. Every single job in publishing should be a social job. I did not always think so. But the more people there are to amplify your message the better. Social media is not only a broadcasting tool, it is also one of the best learning and listening tools for you and your business. You have an open forum to observe and study the readers, their taste and comments. At a time when we need to be learning new skills all the time, social media can be a gateway to that learning.

This one I did get right. We shifted our entire staff to incorporate social media and social networking in everything they do: From searching for influencers, tracking numbers and word-of-mouth, to interacting with bloggers, and supporting our clients. In 2013, we will continue our focus on incorporating social media with our online publicity campaigns.

In the coming year, I only know one thing for sure. We’ll need to keep all options open and learn as we go. What have you learned in 2012? Please share your lessons.

© 2012 Fauzia Burke. All Rights Reserved.

Author Bio
Fauzia Burke is the Founder and President of FSB Associates, a digital publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. For online publicity, book publishing and social media news, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke. To talk with FSB and ask your book publicity questions, please join us on Facebook.

6 Steps for Finding the Best PR Firm for You & Your Book

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

By Fauzia Burke

Most authors know that a public relations effort for their book is essential for their success. In order to have a campaign to promote their book comprehensively, many look to augment their publisher’s efforts by hiring a PR agency. But how do you choose the right PR firm for your book? Here are six steps to help make that choice easier:

Step 1: Needs and Goals

Before you begin your search, think about your PR goals. What is it that you want? Do you want to be on TV? Do you want reviews in newspapers? Or, do you want to build exposure online? Whom do you want to reach? Do you know your target demographic? How long do you want to work with a PR agency? Do you want to work with a PR agency for a one-time book or project or for multiple projects longer term? Once you identify your goals, you’ll be able to find an agency that can help you achieve them.

Step 2: Referrals

Your search should always start by asking your agent, publisher or fellow authors for referrals of people they have worked with so you can have some names to begin the process. You can compare and contrast the agencies you have, and find the right fit for you. You can also work the process backward and find a successful book that’s in the same realm as your book, and find out what PR firm that author used.

Step 3: Web Research

Look up the agency online. Check out their website and social networks as well as their current and past projects and testimonials. Find out how long they have been in business and what types of people they work with. In our connected age, it’s easy to do your homework ahead of time to be able to narrow down your list based on your research. It’s 2012 so make sure the agency you select is connected in the social media world — Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. If they are connected digitally, they will be able to help promote and advice you in the social media space.

Step 4: First Contact

Begin contacting several firms to pick the one that is right for you. Collect information on prices, timeline and availability. Find out more about their area of specialty and expertise. Make sure your book is the type of book the PR agency tends to work with and promote. Now you can narrow your list further.

Step 5: Interview

Once you’ve narrowed down your list based on your budget, goals and timing, you should set up an interview with each PR firm by phone or in-person. A good firm will want to talk with you as well to make sure the fit is perfect. They should also encourage you to talk with other PR firms. Before you schedule the interview, give the firm the opportunity to learn about your book so you can hear their ideas and decide if you like what you are hearing. Ask questions just as if you are interviewing someone for a job. Find out the publications and media outlets where they have built relationships. Remember a good PR agency should have an established network of media contacts. Make sure the agency you are talking to understands your brand. You can even request a preliminary proposal of how they would go about publicizing your book. Good PR agencies have strong track records.

Step 6: The Final Decision

The most important part of your decision process should really be your instincts. It’s all about knowing and liking the PR agency you are going to work with, because if you don’t like the person initially, you will most likely be dissatisfied in the long run. Did you establish rapport upon initial contact? During the interview phase, which firm stood out? What agency do you like, respect and trust the most? In the end, go with your gut, and you will make the best decision for you and your book.

Along with results, a good PR agency should give you valuable information for building your brand and to amplify the exposure you are getting. In the end, it is all about the collaboration so pick your team carefully.

© 2012 Fauzia Burke. All Rights Reserved.

Author Bio
Fauzia Burke is the Founder and President of FSB Associates, a digital publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. For online publicity, book publishing and social media news, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke. To talk with FSB and ask your book publicity questions, please join us on Facebook.

10 Skills to Thrive in PR Learned from Reality TV

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

I have a confession to make. My guilty pleasure is reality competition shows like Project Runaway, Top Chef and Amazing Race. I know I am not alone because all these shows have seen years of success and ratings. Recently, I thought working in PR is a lot like being a candidate in a reality competition: same pressures, same deadlines, same high expectations. I also noticed that there are some common skills between the candidates who do well in these shows and the ones who are successful in PR.

Here’s my take on the skills you need to be successful in PR and reality TV:

1. Be open to new ideas — Be a constant student and be open to discovering new ways of doing things. PR is always evolving and you should be too.

2. Initiative — Do more than what was asked of you. Not only will your initiative be appreciated by colleagues and clients, you will be setting a leadership example for those around you.

3. Teamwork — If you are a team player, you probably have the right attitude. You can’t be a component of a team if your only focus is to grab the limelight for yourself. Instead, be a team player by talking less, listening more and encouraging each member of your team to play up their strengths.

4. Time management — If you are late to work, late to a meeting or late with a project, you are saying a few things about yourself that are unfavorable. For one, you are saying you aren’t personally accountable or reliable and that’s not good. Two, you are saying that you don’t respect someone else’s time, also not good. Meeting deadlines is ultimately an issue of respect and trust — two things that are essential in PR.

5. Respect for others — Respect other people’s thoughts, ideas, insights and feedback and they, in turn, will respect yours.

6. Humility – Humility makes you likable and that’s helpful in any work environment. Remember PR is like fashion, “one day you’re in and the next day you’re out.”

7. Resilience – Resilience is all about sailing through the highs and the lows with a clear head and the ability to learn quickly from missteps. PR is full of highs and lows and there is nothing you can do to control that, but you can develop an attitude of resilience to get through the rough days. A healthy dose of optimism doesn’t hurt either.

8. Organization – You can’t survive in PR if you are not organized. A good rule to follow is to plan your next day before the current day ends. Tackle big priorities early in the day. Write everything down — on your electronic calendar or in a planner. Stay on top of everything. Best way to deal with the stress of PR is to stay organized. Here’s a blog I wrote that might help too: PR is Stressful, But You Don’t Have to be a Stress Monster.

9. Hard work – You can’t be a stranger to hard work if you want to work in PR. Roll up your sleeves and dive in. View each day as a blank slate and work as hard as you can — even on the days you don’t feel like it.

10. Curiosity — A curious mind indicates that you have a healthy attitude and the ability to incorporate new ideas — even when they are not your own.

A select few reality TV Shows aren’t without merit, but don’t tell my husband or he’ll roll his eyes at you too. Next time you watch a reality competition show, notice the traits of the best candidates. They may be more helpful than you thought in predicting your success in PR.

© 2012 Fauzia Burke. All Rights Reserved.

Author Bio
Fauzia Burke is the Founder and President of FSB Associates, a digital publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. For digital publicity and social media news, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke.

It Takes a Village to Promote a Book

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

by Fauzia Burke

“Markets are conversations,” said the authors of The Cluetrain Manifesto and it is still the number one thesis on their Web site. Social media allows you to have those conversations. When I wrote a Blog on Huffington Post called “It’s 2010: You Really Need to be on Facebook”, I was shocked by the response. In fact, Donna Fenn, author of Upstarts wrote on her Bnet blog that judging by the response, you’d think that I had asked people to walk around naked. It is surprising that anyone could still deny the benefits of social media for marketing.

Today’s marketing is truly about conversations. So if you are going to spend the time and money marketing a product or service, you should think “will this start, maintain, or enhance the conversation?” Will this get people talking, will they take it to their twitter feeds and Facebook pages? Will they forward, post, or retweet this?

I have found that it is seldom that one big hit that results in conversations. You need a lot of attention, some big, some small, all moving the conversation forward. If you compare hits to the old formula that big is best, then the smaller blogs have little impact. But if your goal is to truly broaden the scope of the discussion, you need lots of people talking on lots of different Web sites and blogs.

Even a feature on Web sites like CNN.com or Oprah.com does not guarantee instant increases to your Web site traffic or book sales. In fact, these days even a Today Show appearance is no guarantee. However, I believe a sustained effort to keep people talking results in speaking engagements, paid blog posts (yes there is such a thing), interview opportunities, more fans on your Facebook page, more traffic on your site, increased sales, and a recognition and expansion of “brand YOU.”

Selling books is almost always the first goal of every author, however if you chat with them a bit they’ll say things like, “I want to help people,” “I know my book will make a difference,” “I want to make sure people know what is really going on,” “I want to make people laugh,” “I want to entertain my readers” or “I envision a world where people love what they do and if they read my book they would.” I often take on projects based on these secondary goals, the goals that speak to the truth of the person and the importance of the book. These are the goals that are worth talking about.

As a marketer, I can’t ever get people to talk about the author’s first goal. Not once has a reviewer said, “Please buy this book because the author would like to have a bestseller.” However, those secondary goals have always started conversations and sparked interests and led to interviews and discussions.

Many of the bloggers we work with post their reviews on multiple blogs and Web sites like Twitter, Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, Ning, Library Thing, Facebook, and more, all of which increase the search visibility of the book and author. In that way, those reviews or features are all fluid and viral. They do not stay where they are created. They often take flight and have a much broader life than just the traffic on their own blogs.

Search results, conversations and virality are most important in today’s connected market place, and they are achieved by a broad spectrum of coverage, not just the sites that get the most hits.

So as of today, think about the real reason you wrote the book, the reason why only you could have written it, think about those secondary goals, and then get on with the business of starting conversations.

What do you think it takes to promote a book these days? Please share your comments. Thanks.

12 Social Media Tools for Publicity

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

by Fauzia Burke

The explosion of social media in the last few years has brought with it a whole slew of social media applications and tools designed to help publicists deliver and monitor better results. As I have written before, I think social media has been a huge help for publicity. However, choosing the tools is important in helping you save time and be effective. I’ve compiled a list of 12 tools that lighten the social media workload at FSB, and I hope you find them helpful as well.

Blog Searches:

Blogpulse: You can search for a URL, name or topic. I think it gives good results for a given topic, even though I’m not always crazy about the results. However, every now and then I find things here that are missed by Google or Google alerts.

Google Blog Search: This is the most thorough blog searching tool around. You can find blogs for any topic.

Technorati: This is a great site of blogs by topic and ranking. Very helpful.

Digital Presence Assessment and Management:

Addictomatic: This site is very helpful in gauging a digital footprint as it searches the web for latest news, blog posts, videos and images. A cool element is that you can customize the dashboard by simply dragging the boxes around.

Hootsuite: We use Hootsuite in the office and even pay for the pro version. I think it is an excellent program that we find more reliable than Tweetdeck. You can manage several accounts and schedule posts for Twitter and Facebook.

How Socialable: This site gives you an evaluation of your brand’s visibility. It’s not great for personal brands, but a good tool for big brands, like your company.

Klout: One of the most popular Twitter popularity tools, Klout measures influence rather than just followers.

Social Mention: This site allows you to search an author, company or topic across the Web. You can get results from 100 social media sites in one place. My favorite part is that it gives you sentiment (positive, neutral or negative) of the mentions all over the Web, along with top keywords and top hashtags. It’s handy.

TweetReach: This is one of my favorite sites. It allows you to search a topic, author, handle or name and see how many people were reached by those Tweets. You can also see who sent the Tweets and how many followers they have. Very helpful for publicists looking for influencers.

TwitterCounter: I love this site. It allows you to see the Twitter stats for any handle. You can see if the trend is for gaining followers or losing them. Also shows you how many Tweets are made everyday by any handle. Good for research and for monitoring the success of your company feeds.

Topic Search:

Google Trends: If you are working on a news topic, this is an excellent source as it gives you insights into the traffic and geographic visit patterns.

Twazzup: This site allows you to filter news from live Twitter content. It’s good to see trending topics and influencers for a given subject. Better for topic than an author’s name.

Having a social media platform for communicating is extremely important for the success of your publicity campaigns. The majority of the tools presented in this list can make communicating your messages on target and easy to manage/track. I invite you to choose the ones that help make your social media experience more productive and better still, enjoyable. Do you have a favorite tool not on this list?

For the latest on web publicity, social media news, and personal branding, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke.

8 Ways to Develop Better Relationships with Bloggers

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

By Fauzia Burke

When authors come to me and say, “I want to reach book bloggers or mommy bloggers,” I often have to tell them that bloggers have very specific tastes. More specific than you probably realize. For example, when reaching out to mommy bloggers, it is really important to know the age of their kids. Pitching a YA novel to a mommy blogger with a baby won’t get you far. Pitching a Sci-Fi novel to a blogger that loves historical romance won’t work either. Sending a WWII book to a blogger that covers the Civil War will make for a cranky blogger, and sending a press release to the wrong person may actually get you blacklisted.

So here are some tips to help you develop better relationships with bloggers.

Know Their Beat

The best piece of advice to any publicist trying to build a relationship with bloggers is to build it through mutual respect, trust, and consistency. Make sure you know the blogger’s focus and area of interest.

Search For Blogs

If you are looking for bloggers, try AlltopTechnorati, or Google Blogsearch. Another interesting but time-consuming site is called Listorious; it helps you search for people and lists on Twitter.

At FSB, we have also set up a directory where book bloggers are listed by category. Each book blogger has registered and submitted the information themselves and others are welcome to join the blogger directory. The directory is available for free to everyone – bloggers and publicists alike.

Value of Bloggers

It’s good to know the traffic of blogs, but don’t dismiss bloggers with less traffic. It is important to look at the “full reach” of a blogger. Sometimes blog features from smaller blogs can generate more chatter on social networks. It’s a good idea to follow them on Twitter and “Like” them on Facebook to check out their social networks. Some bloggers post reviews on multiple sites so they can be more valuable for that reason alone. Remember also, that placements on niche sites (with less traffic) can sometimes be more effective than placements on a large general interest site.

There isn’t a consistent way to get traffic information for every type of blog. However, here are a few tips: You can always see the number of people that are subscribed to an RSS feed (usually listed on each blog web site); another way is to use a web tool like Compete or Alexa, but unfortunately these tools don’t keep traffic for all blogs; and lastly you could always check out a blog’s advertising info or media kit.

Make Things Easier

Understanding the needs of bloggers will help you work with them. Make note of the type of coverage they have. Do they like to interview authors, review books, do raffles or post guest blogs? Then make sure you send them the materials they need in a timely fashion.

Because bloggers need quality content often, we have set up a web site just for bloggers called FSB Media. Bloggers can request review copies plus “grab” quality content from published authors. We make sure we have permission already in place so bloggers can feature the content on their site with ease.

Approach Bloggers One At A Time

Every time I say that, people either roll their eyes in disbelief or try to sell me on the benefits of mail merge. Here’s the honest truth: you are better off reaching out to 50 bloggers one at a time than 500 via mail merge. You’ll actually get better results. Is it time consuming and labor intensive? You bet. Is it worth it? Yes!

Don’t Push

Without follow-up nothing will come of your pitching, so you need to find time to follow up and develop skills in asking without being pushy or rude. Every good publicist needs to master the delicate art of begging.

Represent Good Content

Don’t send out press releases, articles, or op-eds that are not written well. Make sure the content that leaves your hands always looks professional and does not have spelling or grammatical mistakes.

There are a few endorsements from bloggers on our site, and I read them as market research for this piece. Many of them noted that being consistent and professional is important to them.

Perfect Your Publicity Database

All of these tips are good and fine, but unless you make some changes to your contact database, these tips will be difficult to implement. At FSB, we have several fields in our custom-designed database that help us develop relationships with bloggers.  We record when the contact was added, by whom, and any notes about their likes and dislikes. We also keep track of all the books sent to every blogger and which ones featured our books. This practice allows us to learn more about the blogger with every interaction and only send them the books he/she would be inclined to cover.

I hope these tips help you develop better long-term relationships with bloggers. A couple of years ago, I wrote a blog on The Huffington Post called Book Bloggers Rock! where I thanked them for their hard work and dedication to books and authors. I stand by that idea and encourage publicists and publishers to change internal publicity systems to develop an ongoing dialogue and relationship with bloggers.

For the latest on web publicity, social media news, and personal branding, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke.

FSB Associates at Book Expo America 2011

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

To celebrate 16 years of online publicity business, FSB founder and President, Fauzia Burke, has taken the company to the Javits Center in New York City to officially debut at this year’s BookExpo America 2011. Being a recognized vendor at BEA is a big deal for FSB as it allows the company to better inform the public about its services and how they fit into the ever-changing publishing world which is right now abuzz with digital technologies. The online component of book publicity has become an integral process of today’s successful branding and marketing campaigns and FSB is proud to be at the forefront of this movement. See Fauzia’s BEA digital marketing presentation online if you missed it at the show. You can also hear her discuss these trends in a special podcast presented by BEA.

Each day at the FSB Associates booth a different set of members from FSB’s team along with Fauzia and Vice President John Burke will be greeting attendees with an in-depth presentation on the latest trends in book publicity and personal branding. Keeping with the digital theme, the company’s social publicity brochure and valuable resources are presented on USB flash drives for participants to take with them for later reference. There’s even an Amazon Kindle up for grabs for those that enter FSB’s giveaway.

Midway through BEA, there have already been tons of celebrity sightings and friendly exchanges with the big movers and shakers that make the publishing world go round. The photos below capture a taste of the fun and excitement FSB has experienced so far. Catch more up-to-date happenings on our Facebook page and Twitter feed. Or better yet, come to booth #4304 and visit us in person if you’re in town!

Whether you attend or not, make sure to visit BookExpo America’s web site for information on the large number of programs and events taking place.

BookExpo America (BEA) is North America’s largest gathering of book trade professionals attracting an international audience. It is organized with the support of association partners including the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and the American Booksellers Association (ABA).  BEA is recognized for the media attention it brings to upcoming books as well as for the notable authors it attracts to the convention itself.

Personal Branding Advice for Authors

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

by Fauzia Burke

With over 15 years of experience in online marketing, I can say without a doubt or any reservations, that developing a personal brand online is crucial to your success as an author.

Personal branding is new to all of us, but its importance is growing exponentially. So the question I get asked most is, “What’s in it for me? Why should I invest in building my brand online?” The most important element of a personal brand is that it helps you be yourself and stand out from the crowd. After all, there is no competition for you.

The essential elements of personal brand development include: web publicity, blogs, syndicating content for guest blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.  The benefits of these activities increase considerably when conducted in a well-planned and cohesive manner. First, it is best to establish goals for developing your personal brand.

Two of the most important goals of Personal Brand Management are:

  • To increase brand awareness through consistent social media interactions
  • To increase credibility and establish expertise via web exposure

Developing your personal brand takes time, but the good news is that the tools are free and you already have the knowledge. Social media now allows you to share your knowledge and build a following. Once you “know” your readers you’ll have a lot more control over your career and will be able to promote not just your books but also your apps, conferences, videos, webinars, websites and more. Your personal brand will make you more valuable to your publishers and agents as well. In my opinion, personal brand management is today’s resume.

Social media has given us great ways to protect and build our digital reputations. Today we have the ease of searching conversations, the ability to set alerts to help us monitor our names, a constant availability of learning opportunities, as well as a myriad of ways to communicate and interact with others. All of these tools, which were nonexistent just a few years ago, now make it possible for us to be proactive in maintaining, building and protecting our good name.

Credibility — Web Publicity allows others to lend credibility to your work by posting reviews, interviews and mentions of your book on their site or blog.

Expertise — The benefit of a regular blog is that it allows you to show your expertise and share your knowledge. Four out of every ten Americans read blogs, according to a study by Synovate/MarketingDaily. This trend is increasing daily.

Syndication — Once you have a blog written, it is best to submit it on other sites such as The Huffington Post. If possible, you should also submit your articles to other blogs and sites for guest blogging opportunities. Each time your blog gets mentioned or posted, so does your name and the link to your website. Over time this is the best way to increase the Google ranking of your site.

Relationship Development – More than 500 million active users spend 500 billion minutes per month on Facebook. It is no exaggeration to say that without a Facebook presence you are at a great disadvantage. Engaging with your readers will lead to higher book sales and career advancement.

Share Expertise — At first, Twitter may seem overwhelming and difficult to use, but as you spend time on the site you will likely discover the benefits of sharing resources and collaborating with others.

Networking — About 35 million people use LinkedIn. It is the most professional of social networks and essential for showcasing your professional experience, contacts and recommendations.

Show Yourself — The popularity of YouTube is growing hourly, currently it gets 2 billion views a day. Today, people are looking for an authentic connection with you. Posting a video of yourself allows potential fans and readers to learn more about you, your expertise and your passion.

Although social media engagement may not provide instant gratification, it should be viewed as an investment of time and money in your career and your future. I have experienced first-hand the benefits of personal branding, both for my clients and myself. I have witnessed the difference between launching a book for an author who has work to develop a strong personal brand, versus an author who did not invest any resources in building an online presence.

In the coming year, I urge you to devote some time to developing a plan that includes all of the aforementioned elements. Decide how much time you can devote to each aspect of building your brand and also where you will need to invest in receiving help from experts.

Developing Your Digital Marketing Blueprint

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011

by Fauzia Burke

Here are seven steps to developing a digital marketing blueprint. Many people skip the first four, but these first few steps are the crucial difference between success and failure. I have also uploaded slide presentations to help you along.

  1. Assess Your Situation – This first step is perhaps the most important. Before you can commit to doing more digital marketing, you need to know what’s working and what’s not. Take a snapshot of where you stand. Think of the following questions: how well is my website working for my goals? Do I have email addresses of my customers? How many fans or followers do I have on Facebook or Twitter?When you are assessing your website, look over the traffic numbers. How many people come to your site, which pages do they visit, how do they find you, and how long to they stay? These answers should give you an idea about the effectiveness of your site. If nobody is staying on your website for more than a few seconds, then something needs to be changed.Another element of assessing your situation requires an honest assessment of your resources. How much time, knowledge, technology or money do you have to devote to digital marketing? If you don’t have a lot of time you might need to hire somebody. If you don’t have a lot of money you might have to set aside some extra time to do this work on your on.
  2. Know Your Customers – Understanding your target audience will help you devise the best digital marketing strategy for you. Digital marketing is customized and personalized so it is essential for you to know your customers so you can serve them best. Learn about their age group, their gender, their industries. It’s also important to know the tech savviness of your customers.
  3. Designate a Storyteller – For any digital marketing strategy to be effective you need a designated storyteller, marketer, brand evangelist. If you skip this step, your digital marketing strategy will not be sustainable.
  4. Set Goals and Timelines – Without setting realistic goals and timelines you will not know when you are achieving success and when you are missing the mark. Some realistic goals are: improve your website; build a mailing list; start a fan page on Facebook or get more fans on Facebook; start making videos and getting them distributed; start writing a blog, or syndicate your blog; look into twitter or grow your followers.
  5. Implementing Digital Marketing – Once you’ve taken the first 4 steps you digital marketing strategy will become much more obvious to you. Then you can start implementation a plan. I find a lot of people jumping from new thing to new thing without really setting goals or having assessed their situations. In my opinion, the six essential elements of digital marketing are: website, enewsletter, blog, Facebook, video and Twitter. For more details on these elements you can read my blog on 6 Elements for Digital Marketing.
  6. Monitor Your Progress – Although a lot has changed in marketing in the last few years, the most exciting change is the availability of free monitoring tools. You can set up email alerts for your name on either Google or Bing, and use Google Analytics for analyzing your website traffic. If you set up a fan page on Facebook, you can use Insights to gain valuable information. My favorite tool for monitoring Twitter is still TweetReach.
  7. Be Flexible – Digital marketing is new to everybody and we’re all trying things out. It’s important that you just keep an open mind and experiment. Experiment with your time, and experiment with your money. If you succeed learn from it and try it again. If you fail, just smile. Take a deep breath, and try something else.

Digital marketing is a very innovative field right now and everybody is trying different things in different combinations. You just have to find the right combination for you and your customers.

Making It In America

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

What does it take to make it in America? There are so many business, economic, social, and cultural conditions to consider and arguments to be settled to know where to even begin. But the following books will get you on the path to understanding what makes this nation tick and who’s tugging at what ropes so that you can decide for yourself how you’re going to live within one of the most colorful nations in the world.

Divinity of Doubt: The God Question by Vincent Bugliosi

Vincent Bugliosi, whom many view as the nation’s foremost prosecutor, has successfully taken on, in court or on the pages of his books, the most notorious murderers of the last half century – Charles Manson, O.J. Simpson, and Lee Harvey Oswald.

Destined to be a classic, Bugliosi’s Divinity of Doubt sets a new course amid the explosion of bestselling books on atheism and theism – the middle path of agnosticism.  In recognizing the limits of what we know, Bugliosi demonstrates that agnosticism is the most intelligent and responsible position to take the eternal question of God’s existence.

Divinity of Doubt from Vanguard Press is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Where Does the Money Go? Rev Ed: Your Guided Tour to the Federal Budget Crisis by Scott Bittle and Jean Johnson

Now revised and updated to include current predictions about the effects of the Great Recession and President Obama’s healthcare overhaul, this guide to deciphering the jargon of the country’s budget problem covers everything from the country’s $12 trillion and growing debt to the fact that, for 31 out of the last 35 years, the country has spent more on government programs and services than it has collected in taxes. It also explores why elected leaders on every side of the fence have so far failed to effectively address this issue and explains what you can do to protect YOUR future.

Where Does the Money Go? Revised Edition from Harper is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOChUaCsKz8

Consider: Harnessing the Power of Reflective Thinking In Your Organization by Daniel Forrester

There’s an intangible and invisible marketplace within our lives today where the products traded are four fold: attention, distraction, data and meaning. The stories and examples within Consider demonstrate that the best decisions, insights, ideas and outcomes result when we take sufficient time to think and reflect. Including interviews with leaders such as General David Petraeus, attorney Brooksley Born and global investor Kyle Bass, Daniel Forrester shows us that taking time and giving ourselves the mental space for reflection can mean the difference between total success and total failure.

Consider from Palgrave Macmillan is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Boombustology: Spotting Financial Bubbles Before They Burst by Vikram Mansharamani

With the increased complexity and volatility surrounding financial bubbles, we need a more effective way to spot and understand these events. Based on his popular seminar at Yale University, Boombustology presents Vikram Mansharamani’s multi-lens framework for evaluating the extremely elaborate social phenomenon of financial market booms and busts.

The framework found within these pages offers a robust understanding of the dynamics that precede, fuel, and ultimately reverse financial market extremes. Regardless of your economic or financial background, Boombustology will put you in a better position to spot financial bubbles before they burst.

Boombustology from Wiley is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

What Could Happen If You Do Nothing? A Manager’s Handbook for Coaching Conversations by Jane Murphy

“What could happen if you do nothing?” offers managers clear, usable tools to enhance the way they listen and engage their people. Mini-dialogues, sample questions, listening tips, and suggestions use familiar situations to show how to transform business challenges into coaching opportunities. This is an essential resource for developing employees to their full potential and for fostering better working relationships for individuals, teams, and the business itself.

What Could Happen If You Do Nothing? from Giraffe Business Publishing is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.