Archive for category: Social Media

Last Week’s Top Social Media and Content Marketing Posts

13 Apr
April 13, 2015

I generally share over 50 different pieces of content a week, and each week I dip into my analytics on Buffer and see which ones struck a chord, and which ones missed the mark. I’m going to start curating a summary of these each week, as I believe that they are good pieces of content that should be read.

So, in no particular order…

Social Media Tools to Optimise Your Time

There are so many tool available to create efficiencies in the social space – some good, some bad, and some just make more work for you. Social Media examiner has pulled together a list of some tools that will definitely make things easier, including a few of my favourites.

Why Everybody Writes is the Book Everybody Needs

I reviewed the fantastic Everybody Writes back in January and got the chance to ask Ann Handley a few questions about it. It’s required reading for every content marketer

What the (Unofficial) Death of G+ Means for Marketing6101903676_c61d62f591_z

I’ll be honest, i gave up on G+ ages ago. I started out using it as you should with a social platform, and the longer it went, the less relevant I saw it become. Now even Google thinks it’s had its day. Here’s what the impending “stripping for parts” of G+ means for marketers.

6 Ideas for Images That Really Work

Visual social media is exponentially more engaging than just text, which has given rise to platforms like Instagram and Pinterest. But there is a science and an art to an effective use of images in social media posts. In addition to this advice from Content Marketing Institute, I would also recommend reading this post on 19 Visual Social Media Secrets from Socially Sorted.

10 Steps To A Successful Content Marketing Strategy

Content marketing and strategy continue to be hot topics, which means there are a lot of these kind of posts floating around. This one from Demand Media is one of the best I’ve found, with a nice succinct infographic to summarise it all – it shouldn’t be rocket science if the fundamentals are sound.

10 Step Content Marketing Strategy from Demand Media

10 Step Content Marketing Strategy from Demand Media


Google Plus Photo – Leon Nicholls via Flickr

Social Media Scams – How to Spot One

05 Mar
March 5, 2015

Today I noticed one of the old mainstays of social media scams appear in my Facebook feed again. I’m talking about the free voucher from a major brand (in this case Bunnings) that one of your friends has tagged you in when they have apparently “shared” it. For those unfamiliar, it looks something like the image on the right.

Social media scam dressed up as a Bunnings offerAside from me already knowing these are fake, there are a handful of tell tale signs here:

  • The poorly sized image – a brand like Bunnings would have their logo correctly sized on Facebook
  • The unnecessary capitalisation of the word “Now”
  • The source of the post – coming via Spotify
  • In all cases of seeing it today, the things that were consistent – the “Thanks”, and the follow up comment from the poster of “Quickly”.

If you want to get into the technicalities of how these scams work, I recommend reading this post from security expert Troy Hunt from a couple of years ago. The upshot of it is that it’s designed to suck you down further into the rabbit hole of free offers from other sites, capture personal data, and potentially worse.

It’s not the only type of scam that we see on Facebook though.

The offer of a free car from Mercedes for liking a page and sharing a photo with the colour you want? The over ordered iPads at a major department store that you can get for nothing by liking and sharing? Flights and accommodation to celebrate the millionth passenger that you have a chance if you share pictures of the boarding pass?

All scams.

If you’re looking for telltale signs, look at the number of fans the page has, an extraneous period at the end of the brand name, and grammatical errors. Then search for the brand itself, most will be verified with the blue tick.

Two examples of the latest Qantas scam

Two examples of the latest Qantas scam

Why do social media scams work?

People will share the and connect with them because they appear to be from reputable brands. Then they are in your feed, and have the opportunity to share other content that may be more malicious once you click on it.

So why is it that people continue to fall for it?

Simply, they rely on one of the top reasons people connect with brands on social channels at all – free stuff.

Promotions have long been one of the top reasons someone will engage with a brand, particularly on Facebook. 15% of people in a recent survey done by HubSpot claim they follow brands who offer something for free.

It only takes one “user zero” to make the mistake of clicking on it for it to spread into many of their friend’s feeds, in the case of the Bunnings example above, 78 people. Then it takes only one of those 78 to click on it, and you get the picture of how these spread so fast. Often times, people don’t know what they’ve done. The last comment below the one above was “I dont know what i clicked on. it’s just an advertisement….”.

Personally, I think it’s an unsolvable problem, short of some major action from Facebook that will limit how they work technically.

People will always want something for nothing, it’s human nature and to a large degree, social platforms have fuelled that further. The best we can hope for is that people are more vigilant about the things they click on and share, and continue to stick to the old maxim, that if something looks too good to be true, it likely is.

PHOTO – John Perivolaris via Flickr

Exploring Social Citizenship

12 Feb
February 12, 2015

I’ve been toying around this week with the idea of what it means to be a social “citizen”.

Your pereception as a “good” or “bad” citizen in everyday society is determined by others based on the way you conduct yourself, interact with others and add value to that society. When it comes to social platforms, it is exactly the same – others determine the value in associating with you based on the way you behave.

The difference with platforms though is that our interaction style is dictated to a large degree by the format.

The key to being a good “citizen” on a platform is to know when and how to use the function within the format to exhibit the same behaviour as you would offline.

I put together a quick SlideShare around what I am calling social citizenship (at the risk of sounding like I am trying to coin a new buzzword), with a focus on Twitter as a platform.


There were 6 areas I looked at, first around getting your house in order – your profile, feed and tone, and then the more executional – giving more than you get, giving context and credit, thanks and giving thanks.

To be honest, there are probably more than just these six, and I think there is scope to evolve the thinking.

The other important thing of note here is that I wrote this from a personal perspective, but the principles themselves I believe sit just as well within the framework of a brand.

Would love to hear your thoughts and comments. Agree, disagree? Any you would add, or remove?

PHOTO – Thomas Hawk via Flickr

Book Review – The Art of Social Media

25 Nov
November 25, 2014

There are a lot of books written about social media. I have an entire section of my bookshelf dedicated to it. The problem is once you’ve read them and understand the basics, they all tend to be a bit same same. And so that’s where they stay. On the shelf.

But what Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick have created with The Art of Social Media is different. This is the kind of book that will never sit on the shelf, because it will be a constant reference piece.

The Art of Social by Guy Kawasaki & Peg FitzpartickI’ve had the opportunity to review the book before it is released this week, and consider it one of the “must reads” for any practitioner of social media.

While the tag line bills it as power tips for power users, anyone who wants to move their brand forward, be it personal or business, will find more than one thing in this book to implement right away.

It doesn’t get bogged down in strategy, rather focusing on actionable tips for each of the major social platforms, designed to help you make an immediate impact.

Focusing on the core platforms that everyone uses (including the oft maligned G+), it presents the “how” of social media in a way that anyone can understand – how to create the the optimal profile, how to curate and produce good content and how to grow your base of connections across all platforms, before jumping into some of the more intermediate concepts – hangouts, events and chats, and how to bring everything together.

I was lucky enough to ask Peg Fitzpatrick some questions about the book:

peg-fitzpatrick-round-960x960Q: For me this book falls into the “necessary for success” category for anyone in any size organisation who is serious about social. What was it that prompted you to write it?

PF: One of the questions that I’m frequently asked is “how I do all the social media that I do.” And that response was longer than an email response or blog post.

Q: You’ve called it The Art of Social – do you think it is more art than science?

PF: One of the working titles was The Art and Science of Social Media but it was changed along the way. I think we covered “the art” in this book with the how-to’s and how we do things. The science of social media would be the measurement and metrics which we didn’t cover in this book. It all works together to be the art and science in my opinion.

Q: There are a lot of heavy reads out there on the topic, and more content being generated on “best practice” every day, yet this book is remarkably lightweight and comprehensive at the same time. Do you think there is a tendency to over think social strategy and lose focus on what actually works?

PF: Yes. We also wanted to diffuse some of the “best practices” with people being told HOW they have to do social media. It’s really a personal thing – not one size-fits-all.

Q: Visual social is the big thing right now, and gets a lot of coverage and how to in the book, which is great – any thoughts on what comes next, and will the same principles we’ve always worked to continue to apply?

PF: I think that visual social media is going to continue to grow and expand into 2015 with SlideShare taking a big step forward as an even more relevant content marketing platform. Although we’ve heard a lot about visual marketing, a lot of people have not changed their practices. It’s imperative for blogs to have great graphics and to have all the Open Graph settings working. It needs to be easy for people to share your content and creating a visual brand for your content is a must.

For me, the important message of the book is that you shouldn’t get paralysed by strategic thinking. While it’s important to have a plan, it’s also important to not let that plan inhibit you from trying something.

While the medium itself can be unforgiving of mistakes at times, sound tips like the ones in this book give you a solid, safe base to begin from based on the collective knowledge of two amazing practitioners.

Want to read more? Visit

Click here to buy it now from Amazon.

19 Social Business and Content Thought Leaders You Should Be Following

31 Oct
October 31, 2014

I follow over 2,000 people on Twitter, but have a number of curated lists of thought leaders in various areas who I always read before anything else. If you’re interested in social media, content or business in general, these are the people you should be following (in no particular order):

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Brian Fanzo (@iSocialFanz)

I Talk Fast & Tweet Faster | Leading Change in #SocBiz, #Tech, #SocialMedia & #Mobile #Cloud ~ Chief Digital Strategist & Partner at @Broadsuite

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Donna Moritz (@SociallySorted)

Winner Best Australian Business Blog 2014 | Visual Social Media & Content Strategy | Free Training

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Rebekah Radice (@RebekahRadice)

#SocialMedia, Digital Marketing, Author, Keynote Speaker, Co-Founder @Imagine_WOW @eSocialSuccess | Coffee addict, sunshine lover & nuts about my 2 pups! ♥

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Deborah Shane (@DeborahShane)

Top 100 #SmallBiz Champ, Top 100 #SmallbizPodcast, #Careers #Branding, #SocialMedia, Content, kindness, travel, humor, cycling, family, friendship.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Jeff Bullas (@jeffbullas)

Social Media Marketing Blogger,Strategist & Speaker,Forbes Top 50 Social Media Power Influencer 2013,Huffington Post Top 100 Business Twitter Accounts

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Scott Stratten (@unmarketing)

4th book UnSelling out now! Also a big deal on fairly irrelevant social media sites which inflates my self-importance. Lesser-half of @UnAlison.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Marsha Collier (@MarshaCollier)

Author 48 books: Social Media Commerce, eBay, Online Customer Service. Forbes Top 10 Influencer, GigaOM Pro Analyst, Founder #CustServ chat #techradio host

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Matt Rhodes (@mattrhodes)

Digital strategy, marketing and social media. Director @FreshMindsTeam for work; marathon runner for play.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Jay Baer (@jaybaer)

NY Times best selling author, marketing consultant, keynote speaker. President of Convince & Convert (

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Joe Pulizzi (@JoePulizzi)

Content Marketing Institute (@CMIContent) and Content Marketing World #cmworld. Author, Epic Content Marketing. #orange‎

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Jonathan Crossfield (@Kimota)

Storyteller, writer, content marketer, consultant and trainer. Let me help your brand tell the stories your audience wants to read.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Ann Handley (@MarketingProfs)

Head of Content here at ‘Profs. I'm waging a war on mediocrity in content.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee)

Family 1st! but after that, Businessman. CEO of @vaynermedia. Host of #AskGaryVee show and a dude who Loves the Hustle, People & the @NYJets.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Charlene Li (@charleneli)

Founder, Altimeter Group. Author, Open Leadership. Co-author, Groundswell. Spouse, mom, daughter, sister.

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | David Armano (@armano)

Global Strategy Director @Edelmandigital. Intrapreneur, dad, hubby to @msarmano, contributor @harvardbiz, co-founder #Allhat, road king & imperfect soul

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | C.C. Chapman (@cc_chapman)

I capture and share experiences for a living. I do this from my keyboard, behind my camera and on stages around the world. There are never enough days...

Social Business and Content Thought Leaders | Chris Brogan (@chrisbrogan)

NYT Bestselling author & leading authority on owning the game you most want to win. Courses: . contact:

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Want to follow them all in one click? I’ve collected them all in a list on Twitter.

What about you? Who do you think should be on the list?