Tuesday, November 30, 2010


I attended the Internet Summit and participated in the preconference intensive training on social media. There were a lot of good ideas that came out of the session but what stuck with me was:

  1. Blogging is one of the most cost effective means of lead generation, search engine optimization (SEO), and marketing your business.
  2. The blog should be an integrated part of your company website. A common look/feel for the blog and website presents a good brand image and it is easy for visitors to either the blog or web site to jump to the other.
  3. WordPress is the tool of choice for blogging and websites. It offers many very useful plugins that improve the impact of the blog.

eTechSuccess does not have a social media company driving the strategy, creating content, or developing the platform. This is a DIY operation. When I started out, I decided to use Google apps and for the most part I have been happy with the results. In addition to Sites and Blogger, I depend on Gmail, Calendar, Voice, Contacts, Docs, and Reader. My hope is that, over time, Google will improve each of these apps individually and also by providing smarter linkages between the different parts. Ultimately Google may parse my business activities, like it does the internet, and offer me clever linkages and suggestions for improvements to my on-line ecosystem.
Although, WordPress is currently better then Blogger I am hoping Google will keep improving their blogging tools. I played around with using Google Sites to create my blog  and I think that it would do a pretty good job if it included the ability to add a tag cloud for accessing posts. If I used Sites in place of Blogger I would achieve the #2 item above.

Look at how my blog compares with a some other blogs I consider strong

Number of Employees
Number of posts in Nov
Number of comments in Nov
Number of Followers
Integrated with Website

The best practices companies I am comparing myself to are:

Startup Professionals - The CEO of Startup Professionals is Marty Zwilling who I worked with while we were both at IBM. When I left I ran into Marty via LinkedIn and saw his blog. His company and blogging effort probably comes closest to what I am trying to achieve. In fact one of his recent blogs is about how to use blogs to be a successful startup.

Ignite Social Media - Jim Tobin is president of the company and spoke at the Internet Summit. Along with some other speakers in that session, Jim mentioned that blogging was a key tool in driving business. However, he was most Tweeted on his comment "Getting into social media is like adopting a puppy. If you do not feed and walk and care for the puppy every day it will die". I suspect he would think my eTechSuccess puppy is on a starvation diet.

Southwest Airlines - Earlier this year, I spoke with Christi McNeill  who is an Emerging Media Specialist at SWA. She told me that the blog was the anchor to their growing social media presence. The social media specialists are part of their marketing department and reach out to employees to provide content that is edited before posting. While the scale of effort at NutsAboutSouthwest is more then I can hope to accomplish at eTechSuccess, I am inspired by their willingness to expand into other forms of media such as YouTube and Podcasts.

So the lesson, I am learning from all of this is to increase the tempo of my posts, figure out how to increase my audience, and make sure my content is relevant to my readers. Then I will worry about WordPress versus Blogger versus Sites.
If you are reading this, then consider becoming a follower, look at some of the other posts and share with friends you think would like the content. Write a comment below and give me some other ideas on successful blogging.

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