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Technorati: The Gold Standard of Blogging

November 9, 2010 Comments off

It wasn’t until recently that I caught on to Technorati and using it as a tool to drive traffic to my blog and see where I ranked in comparison to other blogs in the blogosphere.  So what is Technorati?  Well, “Technorati was founded to help bloggers succeed by collecting, highlighting, and distributing the global online conversation [and is] founded as the first blog search engine.

I was a little nervous about signing up when I first learned about Technorati based on the fact that I would see how small I am in this huge social media realm known as blogging.  But in so many places that I read on how to run a blog, everyone said to use Technorati.  Well if everyone says to use Technorati then I might just have to then (and jump off a bridge which is another story).

So just to give a quick and dirty lowdown on how to use Technorati, follow the steps below:

1. Go to Technorati.com and click on “Join” in the top right-hand corner.

2. Fill in the required information on the next page.  They ask for the usual (name, member name, password, email, etc).

3. Next you’ll have to fill-in information on your profile.  Be sure to include your blog URL in the “URL” box.

4. Add a profile picture if you want people to see who you are.

5. Then towards the bottom you’ll see an area that says “My Claimed Blogs.”  Enter your blog’s URL and click on “Claim.”

6. Once you click that, you’ll be sent an auto-generated email explaining to insert a “claim token” into one your new posts.  Looks something like this “ZRGGQEZ2HKY3.”  After posting  your new entry with the Technorati “claim token”  you will receive another auto-generated email saying Technorati is crawling your blog to verify it actually exists.  This takes about two days for the claim to be complete.

7. Wait about one more day, and you’ll receive another email describing how the claim is complete and how it will take an additional 24-48 for your posts to start to show up in their network.  There’s lots of waiting involved if you haven’t noticed.

8. The next step is to “edit site info” by clicking on your claimed blog once it shows up in your Account page and writing a brief description on your blog, selecting categories for it to be tracked on, and site tags.


 

Once all those of steps are completed.  Sit back and track as you see your blog progress (or digress) through the Technorati network.  The key is to be patient for your blog to gain traction.  Within in a few days, I saw my Technorati Authority” (measures a site’s standing & influence in the blogosphere) jump from 1 to 119.  Continue to add new posts and communicate with other bloggers via comments and this should help foster authority growth.

Although there is heck of a lot of waiting for Technorati to kick in, it is well worth it since Technorati appears to be the gold standard of seeing how you measure in comparison to your cohorts out there.  So don’t stand there, let’s get to it, sign-up on Technorati, there’s nothing to it!

U.S. Army Online & Social Media Division Gets It Right

November 4, 2010 Leave a comment

Last week while attending the 60th Annual AUSA Conference in D.C.  I couldn’t help but keep visiting the booth for Office of the Chief of Public Affairs: Online & Social Media Division (that’s a mouthful).  They had, what I feel, the most interesting and well put together booth at the conference.  The entire flow of their space was very fluid and you could drift from one area of the booth to the next.  It almost had that museum/art gallery feel to it.

My coworker and I visited the booth a couple times and definitely snagged their educational materials on the Online & Social Media Division.  According to my coworker, their graphic design is very sleek and well crafted and I agree.  It’s nice to see something as regiment as the U.S. Army embrace something as new age like social media and graphic design and do such a good job at it.

The people working the booth were also very approachable and fairly easy to strike up a conversation.  One of the social media people had retweeted what I had posted earlier that week about the conference, so it was interesting to actually meet the person that had interacted with me in social media world.  The U.S. Army Online & Social Meida Division definitely gets it right when it comes to embracing the social media trend.  And I wouldn’t mind working for them one day (wink wink nudge nudge).

Here are some blueprint images of the booth (I didn’t take the opportunity to snap actual photos unfortunately).



Smashing Magazine: Mecca for Creative Professionals

October 12, 2010 Comments off

For creative professionals and the like, a great website/blog to go to for inspiration/motivation/latest news is Smashing Magazine which was referred by my coworker Lori of Lorikeet Media.  A lot of the website focuses mainly on  information for web designers and graphic artists, but there is also useful information for marketing professionals and newbie entrepreneurs as well.  A post that I found extremely useful is one called, “Breaking Down Doors: Promoting Yourself to Dream Clients.”  I know as a budding entrepreneur I wanted to find out ways to reach out to clients or find out ways to adjust strategy when I hit a bump in the road.  This entry tells you how to do all that and more.  I especially like the perspective entries are written in.  Always encouraging and light-hearted.  

Another feature of the website I MUST look at every month are the Desktop Wallpaper Calendars they feature every 1st from designers who submit their work.  The wallpaper calendars are amazing looking  which are free for download and can also be downloaded without the calendar as well.

I visit this site religiously and I definitely encourage anyone looking to a get a “For Dumbies” approach to creative/marketing news and trends should also follow Smashing Magazine.  Additionally, if you also follow the Smashing Network, there are other good reads, such as free and awesome WordPress themes you can look through to use on your blog.  I know I’m trying to decide which one I want at the moment.  Look for a possible new look to RAWR! in the near future 🙂

You Are What You Tweet

October 7, 2010 Comments off

When I’m not establishing my own little business on the side, I’m working as a Marketing Coordinator for a government contractor.   The contracts I work on are for the U.S. Army.  I can’t tell you how much of an insane push there has been this past year from the Army to have a larger presence in the social media realm.  Marketing and PR professionals are scrambling to give clients what they want because the catch phrases clients hear all the time are, “social media,” “tweet this,” “like that.”

For one program I worked on called, For Love of Liberty, I just finished a huge social media push before the contract was closed out.  I reached out to tons of blogs that wrote about social studies, the U.S. Army, black history because there is not better way to reach an audience these days than utilizing social media.  We also focused a lot on Google Analytics and SEO to see where our efforts were most effectively being spent.

Being a 23 year old, you would think I would know a lot more about what’s involved in social media, but the truth is I don’t know as much as I should.  I graduated in the Spring of 2009 when the social media phenomenon was only starting to gain traction with the Marketing/PR professionals and Corporate America.  Not a lot of my curriculum was updated with the social media trend.  Everyday now, I’m reading tons of articles and posts on how to harness social media and how to make it for you and your client.  One tool I’m definitely looking into is conferences.  There is one in the DC Metropolitan area which I would love to attend; the PRSA International Conference.  Any DC Area PR social media professional should check it out to sharpen their skills in this subject.   Social Media is only going to be more prominent in the years to come.

Some other blogs I look at daily which have helped me tremendously: