Big Goals, Small Budget?

prsa-logoHere’s a great opportunity for DC-area PR pros who are face high expectations and limited resources. “Creating PR Magic…on a Shoestring Budget ” is hosted by PRSA’s National Capital Chapter on April 13.

A panel of veteran communications professionals who are masters at creating value for their organizations will share their tips and techniques for how they have been able to ensure success.

  • How to structure your department to ensure maximum efficiency and cost savings
  • How to break through the clutter and get your organization noticed
  • The key to leveraging partnership and connections
  • Tips for making the most of your budget
  • Helpful tools and resources
  • Free and low-cost ways to measure ROI

Get the details.

Twitter-Fried? 5 Legit Reasons to Stop Using Twitter

twitter-logo-rt-2-150x150If you are like me, not only do you inwardly cringe when you learn about yet another social media site that you should be using, you secretly pine for a good reason to cut back on your social footprint. The 24-7-ness of it all can be pretty exhausting.

Here’s some food for thought to help you decide if Twitter is a place that you need to be. 5 reasons you can justify an end to your efforts on Twitter:

  1. For most, it doesn’t drive traffic: The amount of traffic that Twitter drives to a website can be quite low when compared to Facebook and email.
  2. Clutter: With roughly 500 million tweets sent per day on Twitter, and most users following several hundred profiles, your tweets can quickly and easily get lost in the stream.
  3. This is a twitterbot talking: The amount of spam on Twitter has steadily increased over the past few years. Fake accounts flood peoples’ feeds with bogus products and potentially harmful links and create an environment where you and your business may not want to be. Even real accounts have automation; to increase their activity on Twitter, many companies use programs to write and send tweets.
  4. Narrow categories of effective content: Celebrity buzz and eye-catching news stories get the most attention on Twitter, leaving little room for others to get their message heard. You may not be able to compete with an army of celebrities and their fans and the 24-hour news cycle.
  5. It’s a Game for Many: Many Twitter users are just trying to rack up followers. Many follow an account only to quickly unfollow to get more followers for themselves and boost their followers/following ratio. It is hard to engage with people who are just playing a numbers game.

I Just Quit FourSquare

foursquareI was a FourSquare addict – checking in everywhere, collecting badges and mayorships as a cheap thrill. I posted photos and tips. That all ended last week.

I got an email from FourSquare that I had to read a few times to understand. Apparently the check in is no longer wanted there – that’s now happening at a new app called Swarm. The message said this transition was going on for some time, but I am a pretty avid FourSquare user (read addict) and it was news to me.

Anyway, what got really confusing is that although my ability to check in on FourSquare was being shut off, the new FourSquare isn’t yet ready to be used. Even today, at the website it says:

A brand new Foursquare, with a brand new logo and look, is almost ready for you.

My response? I deleted the app from my phone. Bye-bye mayorships and badges.

For what its worth, here’s my list of the communication mistakes made:

  • Sending an active user a message that was pretty complicated and that did not give much warning of a major change.
  • Cutting off functionality with nothing to replace it and offering no value proposition. If I can’t check in why use a basically disabled app?
  • Sending a message that made me feel that I was not the power-user I thought I was — it told me that I was way behind the (Swarm) curve. I didn’t like the feeling of suddenly being behind the times.

So, while I take some time to wallow in a little FourSquare pity, please share your FourSquare/Swarm experiences here.

Which Social Sites Drive the Most Web Traffic?

measurementA new report from Shareaholic, which sources data from a network of roughly 300,000 opt-in Web sites, reports the following data on the percentage of overall traffic, including direct traffic, social referrals, organic search, and paid search that social sites receive:

  • YouTube, Google+, LinkedIn, and Reddit each site saw its share of Web traffic referrals decline over the past year. The share of visits in June 2014 for YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn were 0.06%, 0.06% and 0.02%, respectively.
  • YouTube and LinkedIn each saw its share plunge over the past year, shrinking 82.66% (0.29 percentage points) and 77.43% (0.05 percentage points), respectively.
  • Google+ flost 19.81% (0.02 percentage points) of its share of traffic year-over-year.
  • Social media remains a key driver of Web traffic. The eight largest sources of social referrals drove 31.07% of overall traffic sites received last month — nearly double the 15.55% of traffic driven during the same period last year.
  • Facebook now drives nearly a quarter (23.39%) of overall traffic to sites. Over the last year, its share of traffic is up 150.49% (14.05 percentage points) from 9.34% in June 2013.

Use Google+


Google Plus is one of the many services you get when you sign up for a Google account. It is widely believed that using Google+ will give you a boost on Google search rankings.

Here’s what you need to do.

  • Inside Google Plus, set up your profile with pictures, info, etc.
  • Add people into your circles. On Facebook you have “friends” on Twitter and Instagram you have “followers” and on Google Plus, you have “circles.” When people are in your circles, you  get updates from them when they post anything.  If they add you to their circles, than they’ll receive information from you.
  • Post content. Whenever you post anything to public, this means anyone can see it. If you hash-tag your post with a topic than people who are looking for information on that topic can potentially see your post.

Share your tips here for getting the most from Google+.

Social Content – What Does It all Mean?

665_0_resizeSentiment140 analyzes Twitter sentiment to give you a deeper understanding of consumer attitudes. Sentiment140 takes the stream of mentions that are relevant to you and makes them more meaningful by giving you insight into the sentiments they represent.

You can search a hashtag on the Sentiment140 website and get a snapshot analysis of the conversation and sentiment–neutral, positive, or negative– expressed on Twitter about the topic.

The Seniment140 approach is different from other sentiment analysis sites because:
  • Classifiers built from machine learning algorithms are used.
  • The site offers classification of individual tweets, rather than aggregated numbers.