Thursday, 30 June 2011

At an Age Where We Don’t Have Mom and Dad to Choose Our Friends: Choose Carefully!

Social Media has changed the world.  People we meet casually can become part of our permanent network of contacts. Unfortunately, that is the issue! As the day passes by, can we truly remember everyone we meet? We see faces, and we vaguely remember a name… or at least our eyes and ears may recognize the spelling in text or the sound of a name being spoken.  Sadly, we all make mistakes, and we are being carefully watched with guarantees of our inevitable lapse of mind.  So the real question is: how do we separate the real people (being the ones we have actually met) from people or non-human programs who are constantly attempting to have access to our information or steal our valuables.
                Politics and party animals can be significant hindrances on keeping your Facebook from becoming a business liability.  As ES Computer Training teaches us, watch out for inappropriate comments by others on your posts and wall, and avoid being tagged in photos that would jeopardize your credibility in the business world.  You should do this daily (almost like a cleansing), where you remove all unnecessary items from your Facebook account. When it comes down to it, just do not take the risk.
                I guess it goes without saying that we must also watch what we post, but for those who don’t know it, “watch what you post!” Since we often want to be as accessible on our social network accounts as possible when in business, we sometimes do not realize that anyone can view all of this information at any time.  When posting, you must be aware that all info should be censored, and should not be a victim of bias, racism, sexism, swearing or political and religious views.  No, this is not everything we should leave out! If there is a possibility that someone may not enjoy a post, do not post it! Although we may think only a few people may be viewing what we write, this can be wrong, because our posts have the possibility of being viewed by millions.
                Okay, so no matter whether it’s your crazy “friends” or your own opinions, keep your Facebook clean.  Your goal is to show people who you are, and keep them interested in what you have to say without offending them.  Lastly, keep in mind that: if you do not know them, don’t add them.  With each of these precautions that ES Computer Training gives us, you should be safe. Follow the guidelines, and happy friending!

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Six Tips for Smarter Social Networking

All of us are trying to come up with better ways to get more quality online internet sites like Twitter or Facebook. The majority of us are simply skating over the top when it comes to the possibility these systems offer us as individual people. To understand this potential, we have to become more active and willing participants and designers of our own social media universe , setting the pace and tone and attracting others.

Practices continue to be changing, but here's some brief, and frequently counter intuitive, advice which comes from your expertise studying systems and exactly how people respond to them:

1. Be a little "selfless" and advertise others.

Far too many people look at social networks as a tool strictly for shameless self promotion of their business or themself.

If this describes your social media efforts you will find that this is a real turn off for people . A really usefull habit to develop is to promote others in your social networks. Make use of people you respect and admire and promote them like mad - this obviously promotes their success but also will also create more of an affinity between you and that "expert" in the eyes of your readers and therby increase their desire to work and connect with you.

2. Allow some overlap in your private and professional lives.

We have been conditioned to segment or compartmentalize our personal and professional lives. Social networking will continue to break down these divisions more and more. Once again, the problem is trust. It's much simpler to build trust if others have a more rounded view of what you are. Try mixing up. Yyou may be pleasantly surprised at the results.

3. Be more vulnerable.

This advice runs counter to conventional self improvement and business school knowledge. We're trained to produce "personal brands" that conspicuously feature our talents and tactfully hide our weak points. But trust demands vulnerability, if you value trust in your social media neighborhood, you might like to discuss a few of the very hard problems you're wrestling with and reach out and ask for some advice.

4. Use controversy to "provoke" stronger relationships.
In order to provide top notch customer service," we frequently bend over backwards to be sensitive to others' point of view and even temper our own opinions lest we upset anyone.
In reality, provocation does a couple of positive things: it is reassuring to other people that they're seeing you as you really are (presuming just about everyone has controversial or provocative opinion of one type or another) also it helps stimulate others to develop new ideas and thinking. Obviously, what's important is to stimulate others in productive ways, but provocations can be very useful in building strong relationships.

5. Use elbow grease AND TLC

We're frequently told that internet sites are emergent and self-organizing as in, they look after themselves. Hooey! Truly dynamic and expanding internet sites are carefully built and nurtured by the person that the network is built around. These networks require catalysts to grow. They need stimulating conversation topics and interesting people that will motivate individuals to become more and more engaged with your network and connected with you.

Those who add the most value need to be acknowledged and compensated some how. Also, the people within the social network who're producing "low or no value" negative energy and are too self-centric regarding their own self-promotion have to be shown the door, albeit as tactfully as possible.

6. Remember: What happens online stays online!
Unlike that one liner about Vegas, the internet is a global gamespace. Whenever you disseminate information online it almost certainly will remain online somewhere, even if you deleted the info. Not only that, this information could come back and bite you in the you-know-where. Most politicians are very much aware of this. So again, remember: think before you make your social networking posts.

Obviously, you should tailor these tips towards the specific conditions of your own work, company, employer etc. For instance, regulatory or other legal issues can preclude or limit some of these practices.

Even though the intended audience for this post was intended for individuals it is actually just as relevant for

A lot of companies still believe the best approach to social networking is to pay attention to talents and cautiously hide any weaknesses in most of their communications. They sanitize all statements made to the public to prevent anything that might be construed as provocative.

In the movie, "Miracle On 41st Street" Maceys promoted other department stores as a kind of reverse psychology to convince customers that they were the best store to do business with. Other than that instance have you ever seen or heard of one company promoting another just because they really were great and not because they were a partner or getting some kickback or commission? What percentage of companies are actually building a social network that includes and even nurtures customers, a range of their own employees, and a diverse array of external parties who can participate in this relationship over a longer time frame around areas of common interest as opposed to just buying or selling things from one another.

If companies as well as individuals place a high value on longer term relationships that are based on trust, then maybe management team should consider testing these five steps against its external social networking platforms....that is if it has any to begin with.

Monday, 27 June 2011

Cdn Gov Releases Mobile App To Follow Will & Kate's Royal Tour

Something for those following the Royal Tour with Will and Kate as they tour Canada.
The Minister of Canadian Heritage, James Moore, announced a new iPhone abd other mobile phone applications that will make it simple for everyone to follow them each step of the way.

Minister Moore pointed out that this Royal tour is an opportunity for Canadians to take pride in our country and to show the world all that Canada has to offer. He said,  "Launching this application will offer Canadians the opportunity to connect with the Royal Tour and interact with friends and colleagues in exciting new ways."

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will make seven official stops in four provinces and one territory over nine days, from June 30 to July 8. The upcoming Royal Tour will be the first international tour for The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as a married couple.

The new 2011 Royal Tour iPhone application is available for free at

Blackberry and other mobile platform users can access the content at

Thursday, 23 June 2011

No, It is Not JUST a Picture!

          Have you ever been in the situation where you are wondering how you just cannot get that job you have applied for over and over again?   Well, the solution may be as simple as your selection of a profile picture on LinkedIn.    Be careful to select your picture wisely because for all of you jobseekers, it could either make, or break your chances of success.  Make sure to use a personal picture that captures you (and you ONLY) in your best business attire with a haircut and smile that tells the viewer that you are personable and qualified for the job.   Keep in mind that you want to be the focal point of the photograph, so do not wear large pieces of jewelry.  Keep it simple and professional. This includes what you are doing at the moment of the picture. Ensure that your pose or actions are appropriate, and demonstrate the qualities of a desirable employee.  Usually, a high quality close up shot of your face is the best choice.   This avoids the possibility of other distractions in the background that would take away from keeping the focus on you!   Don’t bother changing your picture as often as your friends do.  In fact, once you have found the perfect picture, keep it because it is much easier for employers to remember and keep track of you.  A good picture can easily last 5 years.  Lastly, make this picture available for everyone accessing LinkedIn.  Why wouldn’t you want everyone to see this picture that you have put so much effort into?  So, as we can see, it isn’t JUST a picture; it’s a process, and could be the ticket to your success.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Facebook Growth Takes A Plunge But Canadian Facebook Use Still Growing

eMarketer’s prediction regarding social networking hitting a plateau appears to have been confirmed as Facebook is witnessing a huge drop in traffic IN North America.

It was reported by Inside Facebook, the company gained 13.9 million over April but then only 11.8 million more people over May. However, the typical month in the last year showed growth of at least 20 million new users . The difference this time is that the drop is being seen consistently over a period of months, which is definitely new. Also, North America lost nearly 6 million users while United Kingdom, Norway and Russia all lost 100,000 users.

In other stats by Social bakers, Facebook is growing faster in Asia and Europe than America. In fact, Europe has toppled North America to become number one with 205 million users against North America’s 203 million.

What’s behind this?
Whether it’s competion or simply that Facebook users are tired of socialising on its platform. While privacy has always been the concern, it was never enough of an issue to deter  users from using it. What could probably be deduced from the data is that the rise of smaller and niche social networks like Tagged seemed to have had some effect on the giant. Facebook does appear to be less attractive to college students who are now exploring new ways to share and socialize. Take My Yearbook for example, which has been growing at incredible speed.

What’s Next?
Facebook  has to look beyond North America and also Europe. It is pretty clear that if the company plans to reach the billion figure mark then it has to expand in countries that have been late adopters (Brazil, Indonesia, India and of course China). With combined populated of over two billion and growth rate of over 5% per month, adding another 300 million won’t be much of a problem for the company.

All the rise and fall of Facebooks' phenominal growth may seem dramatic on some occasions but local markets in Canada continue to have steady growth. So please remember there is still a market of over 18 Million Facebook users in Canada that Facebook can give you a piece while your thinking about that check out these stats on Canadian Facebook users on the link below... (note: the graph shows 18M users currently while they state in print above the graph the Canadian total is 16M)

For Canadian Facebook stats click here...

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Smartphones and SEO

We are all looking for easy ways to access the internet, and smartphones may be the answer. Recent reports stated that over 77% of the world’s population in 2011 are mobile subscribers. 
“There are more than 200 million active users [40 percent] currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices." - Facebook official statistics (January, 2011).
How many times have you looked something up on the internet using your smartphone, however, and not been able to read or use the results?  This happens all the time!

            Each of us that have attempted to read, or do transactions on a four inch screen know of the difficulty that the process has.  Whether it is the inability to read the text provided, the possibility of some information being non-viewable or the inconvenience of endless scrolling, we can all agree that non-mobile formatted websites can be a pain. 

            This is where MSEO comes in. Mobile Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility and convenience of a website or a web page on the display of a mobile device to browse and search for information, as well as manage daily activities.  As a result of these issues, many internet savvy businesses have taken it upon themselves to provide a mobile-formatted version of a website that you are immediately re-directed to when accessing from a mobile device.  

            For example, in the search for Champion Lue Sport Google showed Amazon and Target at the top of their search results. As we can see on the left, Amazon’s mobile SEO formatted website has a useful display of the shoe, as well as all important information pertaining to the sale (model, brand, colour, price and purchase availability).  Unfortunately, on the right, we have much of a different story.  On this non-mobile formatted website, there is no significant information other than the logo of Target, and an enlarged display of a less-than-useful portion of the product image.  Inevitably, a properly formatted website is effective, efficient and convenient, whereas websites such as Target’s are left to become both inconvenient and possibly frustrating for mobile users.

           It’s a tough world out there, therefore it is important to meet the demands of consumers. So, for those who are wishing to create a SEO friendly website, here are some simple guidelines to follow:

1.   Think Mobile

2.   Keep the mobile site very simple - only two pages

3.   Avoid frames

4.   Use metatxt

5.   Design from scratch with xhtml for the design or if you have a WAP site use metatxt to send         ___search engines to the right pages

6.   Think about your titles carefully and ensure they express what your website does

7.   Seed each page with at least two keywords that are also within the metatxt

           Mobile is the message and it’s the most important medium. Seize this opportunity to accelerate mobile presence, campaigns, traffic and visibility of your brand.