How to: Traffic from Facebook, part 1 of 2

Continuing in my heretical vein

Lets look at two things: Why Facebook even has free pages, and What Facebook people do with them.

Why Facebook has free pages for businesses

If you haven’t read The Facebook Effect, by David Kirkpatrick, and you are doing business on Facebook, I recommend you read it, just to understand the philosophy you have embraced.  If you don’t have a copy handy, I’m going to quote a paragraph or two to get your attention.  The boy billionaire did not get where he is today giving away goodies. Not really.  He has been generating income for some time, and his investors (in the hundreds of millions of dollars) are interested in income too.

grassfed-gheeGrass-Fed Ghee is the perfect expression of buttery goodness. shop now and see what all the hype is about!

How to: Sound Effects, Music, Voice Overs for your presentations

A friend of mine, Rob Actis is a professional voice actor who has created a package of audio (sound effects, music and voice overs) that you can have for almost nothing.

The sound effects, music and voiceover workparts are geared specifically towards Internet Marketers and Offline marketers that understand the power of video.

If you are producing video these elements will take your videos to  a whole new level!

His video is long . . . about ten minutes, but it gives you a great sampling of what you’ll get for $17.00. And listen to that voice! Rob did all the voice overs himself, and you can use his voice in your productions at a fraction of the cost of calling his agent!

Here is what you’ll get for $17.00:

Sound Effects

This category includes various types of machine, human, vehicle, and animal sound effects such as an explosion, telephone ring, applause, air horn, train whistle and police siren that can be used to add humor and personality to your production!

Sound effects included are:

  • Baby Crying,
  • Wedding Applause,
  • Bee Buzzing,
  • Birds Chirping,
  • Cash Register,
  • Casino Coin Payout,
  • Computer Keyboard Typing
  • DJ Air Horn,
  • Drum Roll Short,
  • Explosion,
  • Kiss,
  • Police Siren,
  • Rooster Cockadoodle,
  • Telephone Ring,
  • Toilet Flush,
  • Train Whistle SFX

Multimedia Buttons

This category has various beeps, bleeps, clicks, digital hits and impacts to highlight a transition, visual logo or graphic on screen. *Subcategories include:

  • Beeps, Bleeps, Chirps, Clicks, Clanks, Bells, Chimes, Hits,
  • Siren sound effects

Sound effects included are:

  • Alarm Hit 1,
  • Alarm Hit 2,
  • Beep,
  • Bleep,
  • Chirpy Beep,
  • Clank Bell,
  • Click,
  • Clickie,
  • Digital Bell,
  • High Beep,
  • High Chime Bell,
  • Knock Beep,
  • Little High Bell,
  • Long Beep,
  • Muted Bell,
  • Quick Wooden Beep,
  • Rising Siren,
  • Rusty Digital Bell,
  • Wet Bleep

Musical

This category includes short riffs and phrases of various musical and percussion instruments that will allow you to add some melody and emotion to your presentation or product.

Sub-categories include:

  • Acoustic Guitar,
  • Distorted Electric Guitar,
  • Harmonica,
  • Xylophone,
  • Saxophone,
  • Gong,
  • Windchimes,
  • Choir,
  • DJ Scratching
  • Cowbell.

Sound effects included are:

  • Acoustic Blues Riff
  • Acoustic Blues Riff 2
  • Choir
  • Cool Sax Riff
  • Cowbell
  • Distorted Guitar Riff
  • DJ Record Scratch
  • Electric Guitar Solo
  • Fast Record Scratch
  • Gong
  • Harmonica Blues Riff
  • Harmonica Train Riff
  • Nice Acoustic Guitar Strum
  • Sax Expressive
  • Sax Honk
  • Windchimes
  • Xylophone Ascend
  • Xylophone Melody

Noise

This category is chock full of various digital noise sounds to use as transitions in your video or audio presentation. *Sub-categories include:

  • Zaps
  • Lasers
  • Bursts
  • Digital Splats
  • Static
  • Rings
  • Delay Elements

Sound effects included are:

  • Alien Zap
  • Bending Zap
  • Blast Zap
  • Clickity Delay
  • Crazy Lazer Mosquito
  • Delay Beeper
  • Digital Splat
  • Digital Squiggle
  • Dull Lazer
  • Freaky Zaps
  • Little Lazer Gun
  • Long Drawn Lazer
  • Low Delay Crash
  • Mosquito Lazer Sting
  • Musical Lazer
  • Mystery Bleep
  • Ring Delay Beep
  • Robot Squiggle
  • Rush Up Siren
  • Short Ring
  • Static Noise
  • Static Slow Burst
  • Warble Zap
  • Water Robot

Sound Design

For the sound designer in you, this category has several of the ever popular “whoosh” sound, rising and diving sounds, impacts, and hits. Use these sounds to add impact to the introduction of graphics on screen. Subcategories include:

  • Whooshes,
  • Rushes,
  • Wipes,
  • Rises,
  • Dives,
  • Impacts,
  • Crashes
  • Hits

Sound effects included are:

  • Crash Cymbal
  • Dark Impact
  • Dark Synth Dive
  • DJ Scratch Hits
  • Flame Whoosh
  • High Dive
  • Impact
  • Low Dive
  • Low Rise
  • Low Tom Impact
  • Quick Synth Dive
  • Rappy Hit
  • Rush
  • Slide Whistle Dive
  • Slide Whistle Rise
  • Snare Pop Hit
  • Super High Dive
  • Synth Rush Hit
  • Synth Zap Hit
  • Ultra High Dive
  • Velocity Crash
  • Whoosh
  • Wipe

MUSIC

The Audio Assassin Toolbox has music that you can use for your offline marketing, online marketing, even in your production of your WSO videos.The fantastic music tracks in this toolkit includes 20 professionally produced music selections in a variety of genres including Beds and Loops, Chill, Grooving, Hip Hop R&B, Rock, Upbeat, and World. *30 second tracks sell for $19.95 individually everyday at SFXsource.com, so this music collection represents a $399 value!

Beds and Loops

Relaxed background beds for voice over including

  • Digital Chill,
  • Morning News Bed,
  • Peaceful Ethereal Bed.

Chill

From meditative, to sentimental, to relaxing, these tracks are perfect for the capturing a touching emotional feel. Tracks included are

  • Acoustic Flute,
  • Chill Presentation,
  • Flowing Meditation,
  • Sentimental Piano

Hip Hop R&B

For that urban, feel, these tracks include a mellow Hip Hop vibe, a traditional tough Hip Hop mix, and a standard R&B track. Titles include

  • Acoustic Hip Hop
  • Hip Hop Fire Mix
  • Sly Girl R&B.

Rock

Need a bit of power and energy in your presentation. These high energy rock tracks will do the trick. Titles include

  • Grunge Rock
  • Heavy Industrial Metal
  • Jock Rock.

Upbeat

For projects that require some pizzazz, these 4 upbeat tracks include uptempo beats with solid bass lines and memorable melodies. Titles include

  • Corporate Groove
  • Disco Funky
  • Groovy Funky
  • Upbeat Guitar Groove

World

These 4 tracks will allow you to add a little ethnic flair to your media production. Including a wide range of geo-specific genres, track titles include

  • African Congolese
  • Bossa Nova Electro
  • Irish Jig
  • Sultry Mambo.

V.O Drop-ins

VO Drop-ins are short voiceover “calls to action” that are easily “dropped in” to your video productions.

Here is a sample of the variety of the “Calls to Action” that we included.

The included VO Drop-ins have no music behind them, they are just dry tracks, that will import into your video productions.

  • “We hope you enjoyed the video… honestly, it’s just the very tip of the iceberg.If you’re ready for more… enter your information and we’ll do the rest.”
  • “To take advantage of our totally free offer… just enter your information in the box below”
  • “This free offer won’t be available for long… and I’m sure you can understand why. Take action now by entering your info right here on this page.”
  • “We’ve reserved your free copy just for you. Just tell us where to send it and we’ll have it to you in sixty seconds or less.* Enter your contact info now.”
  • “Now you can see why we’re excited… and you can easily see why an offer like this Simply can’t last. So grab it now.”

    Imagine the impact that these calls to action can have on your marketing videos.

So, make your presentations slick and sexy. With these tools, you’ll add a professional edge to everything you do. For only $17!

How to: Promotions on Facebook

Facebook SubscribeFacebook heresy

I’m going to commit Facebook heresy here and opine that the only people making money on Facebook (or off Facebook, if you want to take a more jaded view) are

  • the Zuck crew (Facebook itself),
  • brands that are already household words (Victoria’s Secret, for instance), and
  • people selling products to create a Facebook presence (I’m one of those)

I have a lot of clients who want to be on Facebook, because they see Facebook statistics like this:

Facebook user statistics june 2011

And they want to be in front of those 500,000,000 Facebook users.

What they don’t understand is that those 500,000,000 users have posts that are getting ahead of the message my clients are putting out!  Facebook is designed to be a moving, roiling, living thing, where updates are instant and whatever was posted five minutes ago has scrolled off-screen.  And if that weren’t enough, the Facebook gods have adjusted the display algorithms so that custom Facebook page messages are at the bottom of the heap.  Literally.

Real-Time Activity of Facebook Users

Facebook post activity june 2011

You’ve really got to have something to compete with 30,000,000,000 other posts.  Whattya got??

And, half the users on Facebook are on mobile devices:

Facebook statistics for mobile devices june 2011

You’re kidding yourself if you think these people are reading your posts.  They are POSTING to their facebook profiles, uploading photos and responding to messages they get from people the Facebook gods have deigned to place in their stream.  Comments on their posts, direct messages, when their posts are liked . . . IF they have that notification set up.  In reality, they may only be Posting to Facebook, not reading it.

Are you giving up on Facebook?

No Way.  I’m going to suggest that you use Facebook for what it is and leverage the strength of all those numbers up there to your advantage by making some changes to your website.

I’m talking about OpenGraph and the like button technology that Facebook introduced with Social Plugins. You can add these to websites, WordPress Blogs, even .mobi sites.  And they will bring you traffic.

Next up: Facebook to Page Creators: If You Can’t Run with the Big Dogs, Stay on the Porch!

How to add Twitter @Anywhere to your Website or WordPress Blog

It may or may not have occurred to you to add the @Anywhere application to your website or WordPress Blog.

At first blush, the idea of having your own tweet box from which people may ‘tweet’ doesn’t make sense.  Only if you have some incredible content that they want to tweet immediately, would there be a reason for it, and then, lets be realistic, there are all those tweet-this applications that don’t take up nearly so much room in your real estate!

@Anywhere Twitter Application

Twitter describes adding @Anywhere as adding  “open, engaging interactions providing a new layer of value for visitors without sending them to Twitter.com.”

I don’t see going to Twitter.com as being that difficult, and as I said before there are “tweet this” tools all over the net the size of the little guy to your right. So, what else has it got apart from the tweet box?

There are a couple of linking tricks that come with @Anywhere, and my favorite is the hover box that you get with every twitter address you include in your text. Check them out (Mouse over them)

@tracigregory

Twitter’s full list of benefits is small

  • Embed a Tweet Box on your site and help your users share what matters to them. Push your content throughout Twitter–from Twitter.com to Google search; from SMS to the tens of thousands of apps.
  • Seamlessly activate Hovercards wherever you mention a Twitter account. Form long-lasting relationships that follow users throughout Twitter. Twitter
  • Connect provides simple Sign In for tens of millions of engaged users. Access a network made of interests: not just friends, but news sources and businesses small and large.

So there you have it.  The Twitter Connect is an obvious rival to Facebook Connect, and really, I don’t care how I log in to some things, if I just don’t have to create ANOTHER log-in to keep up with.  Twitter, Facebook, really, one is as good as the other, as long as the place I’m signing in to doesn’t require access to either my Facebook or Twitter account.  Then, more than likely, I’m going to just close that window and not explore their site.

Here is how to add @Anywhere to your website or wordpress blog

I have to admit, I think this Hovercards thing they have going on is sexy.  Try the live ones up above (I always wanted Alec Baldwin on my blog . . . ) The one below is a screenshot.


Tweet Box The Tweet box provides a way for users to Tweet directly from your website. To add it we must first review the different configuration options:

  • counter – displays a character counter. Default is true.
  • height – height of the Tweet box. Default is 133px.
  • width – weight of the Tweet box. Default is 515px.
  • label – title of the Tweet box. Default is “What’s Happening?”.
  • defaultContent – pre-populated tweet content.

Next up: quick steps to add just Twitter @Anywhere hovercards.

How to Blog and Why You Should Already Be in the Blogosphere

Free Blog Real Estate on the Net

There are lots of free places to enter the blog world – WordPress.Com will give you a free wordpress site, Blogger (Google) will give you free web real estate, and if you’re new to the habit, they are probably a good place to start.

Already Committed to a “blog of your own”?

If you’re sure you’re going to blog; you know you want to build a brand for yourself, or your company, I’d highly recommend you buy a domain, install wordpress and start with everything in place to gain traction with the search engines.  I started off with Squarespace, which is a very sophisticated platform, but it cost me about $250 a year, and I didn’t have the controls I’d have liked. Moving an entire blog to a new domain AND a new platform (WordPress) turned out to be a real pain in the neck, and I know I lost some posts in the process.

  • Buy a domain
  • Get a hosting account (Hostgator has a good deal and an excellent WordPress installation process)
  • Install WordPress
  • Have Fun!

Having trouble deciding that you should have a blog?

I found some pretty compelling statistics and some really great quotes at Hubspot:

The bottom line is that blogging is like sex. !

You can’t fake it. You can’t fake passion. You can’t fake wanting to engage with the public. If you do, it will ultimately be an unsatisfying experience for both ! the blogger and their readers.”

Kevin Anderson, Freelance Journalist & Former Blogs Editor for The Guardian

More Pages Indexed

More Inbound Links

Way More Leads

 

“In God we trust, all others bring data.”

– Edward Deming

If that isn’t enough, get the entire 100 Awesome Marketing Stats, Charts, & Graphs [Data] from Hubspot.

I sent an excerpt of the Hubspot data to all my clients, present, former, and potential! to remind them how powerful blogs can be.  I’m a huge proponent of blogging as a way to get attention – to develop your presence on the internet and help build your business.

As a Thesis developer, you all probably also know that I’m big on how a website looks, and functions, and it should be obvious that for your blog to work at bringing in readers, who convert to customers, your blog should be good looking, easy to read and easy to navigate. Blogs, by their very nature are candy for search engines, and posts get indexed quickly.  I use Thesis for building blogs because it is so SEO powerful I feel that it really helps in that whole “If you Build it, Will they Come” question with which we all struggle!

If you’d like to see some evidence of the fact that they will come, I invite you to read the series I wrote, If you build it will they come?  http://tracigregory.com/2010/10/06/if-you-build-it-will-they-come-part-1-of-3/ is the first of three posts, and it will lead you to the next two.

What is Empire Avenue

They bill themselves as “The Social Media Exchange”

Empire Avenue is an exchange (think Stock Exchange) where you can invest in any social media profile (buying and selling shares) meet new people, and earn boatloads of virtual cash by being active and social online!

As my advisor put it, they (Empire Avenue) has taken everything all the social networking sites tell you you can’t do and rolled it into another social media.

Get More Juice for your Google Searches

As with any backlinking effort, one would hope that the links from Empire Avenue itself, along with the people who ‘buy’ a piece of you will create more juice for you when there is a search on your terms.

More Fun than Farmville

And, obviously more sophisticated . . . check it out for yourself:

How to Get Google Fonts into WordPress

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Calligraffitti’, Arial, serif;font-size:27px;”] Are You Using Google Fonts for Your Website? [/efpd-font]

Years ago when we only had typewriters, I bribed the office services people to issue me an IBM ‘executive’ typewriter instead of the usual selectric with one font and one font size . . . typically courier, 10 pt. The executive had proportional print spacing and I loved the look. Later when we got computers, I discovered fonts and while everyone else was still turning out documents with courier, I was jazzing mine up so they looked as if they’d been typeset.

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Just Another Hand’, Arial, serif;font-size:27px;”] Fonts R Us [/efpd-font]

Fonts R Us was the nickname I was given, because I was so mad about fonts, and nobody else gave a damn.  Just one more eccentricity of mine.

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Tangerine’, Arial, serif;font-size:27px;”] Google: Making the Web Beautiful [/efpd-font]

Now Google has given us fonts (similar to the Adobe fonts you can add to your website) and once again I’m thrilled to play with font faces. No more doing a header in an image, and then substituting the image of the words for the words. Now with all the choices Google has it will take me a while to get through them all and settle on my favorites.

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Covered By Your Grace’, Arial, serif;font-size:27px;”] Google API or WordPress PlugIn [/efpd-font]

You can read the Google API to incorporate the fonts into your website, or take the quick and easy path by using the WP Google Fonts PlugIn for your WordPress sites.

The fonts I used in this post are shown here in 36px:

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Calligraffitti’, Arial, serif;font-size:36px;”] Calligraffitti [/efpd-font]

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Just Another Hand’, Arial, serif;font-size:36px;”] Just Another Hand [/efpd-font]

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Tangerine’, Arial, serif;font-size:36px;”] Tangerine  (This one may be my new favorite!)[/efpd-font]

[efpd-font css=”font-family:’Covered By Your Grace’, Arial, serif;font-size:36px;”] Covered by Your Grace [/efpd-font]

Using the plugin, you have to

  • Download and Install the Plugin
  • Choose the Fonts you want to use in the WP Google Fonts Settings in the left menu and choose the tags you’ll use them with (header, body, paragraph, etc.)
  • Choose the Fonts in your text (highlight, choose text, you know the drill)

Now dress up your website!

How to Receive Tweets as Text

Text my Tweets

You see everyone else using their phones for Facebook and Twitter – So just how does one use Twitter in SMS text messaging?

Either through SMS messaging proper, or with a third party app for your specific phone you can receive Tweets via SMS from people you follow, and also to post updates to Twitter from your phone. These are some of the most frequently asked questions on Twitter about using Twitter on your cell phone or PDA.

  • How do I use Twitter on my phone?
  • Does it cost money?
  • Will my phone bill be charged?
  • What’s a Twitter “short code?”
  • Can I update Twitter from my Phone but not receive other people’s updates? And vice versa?
  • I’m getting a ton of updates. How can I get fewer?
  • Where can I check whose updates I’m getting to my phone, and whose I’m not getting? I don’t live in the US. How do I use Twitter on my phone?

All these Twitter questions and many, many more are answered in Twitter’s massive help files: Twitter Phone FAQ

Pesky White Space error killed my RSS feed again

XML Parsing Error: XML declaration allowed only at the start of the document

Just got my feed back, upgraded to WordPress 3.1.1 and guess what?  RSS Feed falls off the face of the earth again . . . And I’ve read other people complaining of the same thing happening at WordPress.Org.  It was worth the trip, though.

This guy has answers!

You may not need to do everything he has on his list, mine snapped back with just the editing of my wp-includes/feed-rss2.php file.

Visit him, and see if you don’t resolve your RSS with his suggestions: http://www.w3it.org/blog/wordpress-feed-error-output-solution-how-to/