How to fix that white space rss feed error

XML documentation parse error: Whitespace is not allowed at this location. XML comment will be ignored.

My RSS Feed has disappeared again.

I’ve edited every wordpress file.  And there are a lot.

I’ve used every fix known to man and available on Google.

None of them worked.

And then I read that the & sign, rather than the and word could be killing the way the feed is being read.

I looked at the names of the posts I’ve written for the & sign, and found ONE.

When I changed the name to Tom Peters and Lady Gaga, my feed came back.

You can see that using it within the post works, although I probably never would except in this instance.

Video as an SEO Tool

As Google shifts its emphasis to blended search results, SEO experts find it essential to offer more videos to complement text content.

A comScore study found that, in 2010, America spent 12% more time viewing videos online compared to the previous year.

And because video SEO is still a growing trend with not as much competition for search results as text pages, those looking to climb the search results ranks will do well to take advantage and get there faster.

Google is into Video

“Not only are video results increasingly common in Google’s search results, but your videos stand a much better chance than your text pages of being shown on the first results page,” says Nate Elliot of Forrester Research, which found that the likelihood of a video getting on the first page of Google is 53 times better than a text-centric webpage.

Get the Video Camera Rolling

Benjamin Wayne, CEO of video hosting provider Fliqz shares the 2 ways to get on top of search results pages:

  • uploading your video to YouTube, and
  • implementing video SEO techniques on your own website.

Search engines have no ability to look into the actual video content, but using video SEO techniques, he says, helps Google find your video, successfully index it, and display it when your targeted keywords are searched.

Start Uploading

Elliot shares a few more tips on how to go about using video content as an SEO tool:

  • Make sure your video file names feature your target keywords.
  • Host your video content on YouTube, then embed them onto your own website.
  • On YouTube, make the most of your videos’ titles, descriptions, and tags by including keywords.
  • On your website, make sure to embed videos onto relevant pages. Doing so will put each video in context and help Google and other search engines determine what it’s about.
  • Set up a video section and use video site maps to make your video content easier to find.

That’s Just the Beginning

Making the argument stronger for video in helping a website’s search engine optimization, Google is doing more to boost the viewer experience quality on YouTube. Just last week, Google announced that it has acquired Green Parrot Pictures, a digital video technology company, to improve the quality of uploaded YouTube videos. The technology developed from this endeavor will allow “sharpening the image, reducing visual noise and rendering a higher-quality, steadier video… while your video is simply being uploaded to the site,” says Jeremy Doig, Google’s director of video technology.



How Social Media is Changing the Business of Television

In this article, Bravo Digital Media’s Senior Vice President Lisa Hsia writes about how social media is reshaping the television business. Social media has opened up means for people to share real-time to practically anyone in the world, and that is helping quality television get more people engaged and watching.

Real-Time Participation Generates Buzz and More

[F]riends tell friends when things happen on the air, and that viral conversation turns TVs on,” says Hsia. At the core of it, what social media has done is to give TV viewers a voice and the power to influence programming and other audiences via this avenue for instantaneous feedback.

Bravo is still starting out on measuring and utilizing statistics that show how much social media use affect TV ratings. Yet the means available to them through social media measures not only the number of people who are tuned in, but also the sentiment of a specific group, with the help of tools such as the Trendrr dashboard and Sysomos.

“From Must-See TV to Must-Tweet TV”

Because the activity from social media is now easily archived and measured, social media is ever so inclined to influence the development of programming. The same tools mentioned above can be used to determine future programming decisions, such as whether to keep a program running for another season or not, or which pilot to develop going into a new season based on viewer votes.

Keeping the Conversation Going

Online conversation about a TV program typically increases during prime time and the day after airing. Naturally, the next step would be to get the discussion going all day, everyday, and this goal is what has inspired Bravo to create Bravo Talk Bubble and @BravoTV, where fans, producers, actors, and others invested in a program can keep the conversation going in a more meaningful way. What that also means for advertisers is an ongoing possibility of opening discussion about their own product.

Hsia recommends any TV network must strive to gain access to real-time conversation about shows, brands, and TV personalities to help in programming development and tap into its potential in keeping audiences engaged.

Learn more on how Bravo Digital Media makes the most of the social revolution.


The Science of Twitter Timing: Tweet More

Tweet MORE?

In a webinar presented by Hubspot, I heard the most amazing advice . . . Tweet More. You can tweet up to 22 times a day and not get obnoxious (and unfollowed).

They do recommend that you NOT post 22 times in a row a link to your own website, but posting frequently, to your own content and to other people’s content, Tweet More. And pay attention to when you are retweeted.

Blog MORE?

This one is tough for me, because I like to ‘pretty up’ my posts with images and headlines, and I do these myself, they aren’t outsourced.  So blog more, up to four times a day(!) is a challenge.  But one that I’m going to take on.  If four posts a day can increase my readers, why would I not?

Days and Times to Blog, FB and email

  • Specific advice on email frequency and unsubscribe occurrence;
  • When to post to Facebook for likes;
  • When to post on your blog for sharing.

Listen to the entire webinar here.

New Twitter Tools I Like

Interesting Tool I found, TweetWhen tells YOU the times of day that you get the most retweets. Just so you know if you’re going for a viral effect, and we are, aren’t we?

Twitter Signature Tool

Additionally, I found a site TwtIMG.Com – that creates a signature you can use in forums, emails, etc., that includes your latest tweet, photo and of course, you should include a link to your twitter.  For some reason, it doesn’t . . .



50,000 Twitter Tools

Third Party Twitter Application Usage

In its early days, Twitter was only accessible through a personal computer with Internet access. But as its popularity grew and opened doors to third party developers, unofficial applications lent different dimensions and even improvements to an otherwise simple service. Experts may go as far as to say third party applications played an important role in boosting Twitter’s popularity over a short period of time.

50,000 Twitter applications

In November 2009, Sysomos sampled 5 million tweets gathered over the previous 5 months to find out the most popular Twitter clients. Collectively, third party twitter applications made up 53.21% of all tweets in that time period.  By the end of that year, the number of applications built around Twitter reached 50,000. In April 2010, that figure doubled to 100,000 around the time of their first developer conference.

KISS defined the need for stricter policies for third-party developers

It did not take long before Twitter developed its own suite of official applications to cater to various user segments, including mobile apps Twitter for Blackberry, iPhone, and Android. Meanwhile, Twitter seemed determined to fight off third-party developers for reasons such as Terms of Service violations. Security issues and keeping the service simple for users also became the hot topics behind Twitter’s stricter policies in allowing access to third-party developers.

Twitter’s API changes kill hundreds of apps

In March 2011, Twitter published changes to its application programming interface or API, that discourages software developers from creating clients that allow users to write, view, and respond to Tweets, while saying those existing clients should keep serving their users. Twitter stated that 90% of its users accessed the service through official apps. Shortly after the announcement, Sysomos conducted a study that found third party applications still brought in 42% of tweets to Twitter, based on a sample of 25 million tweets. These non-official apps include TweetDeck, Seesmic, Echofon, and HootSuite.

Apparently, TweetDeck Rocks

In this latest study, TweetDeck is still among the most popular, accounting for 5.5% of all tweets, although it is down from its 8.48% share in 2009. As TweetDeck accounts for 13.1% of all tweets from non-official clients, it is flanked by two other UberMedia owned apps, UberSocial (16.4%) and Echofon (9.2%).

In future posts, we’ll explore what these applications do, and whether or not we’d use them!


5 Predictions for the Public Relations Industry in 2011

Late last year, sparkpr managing director Leyl Master Black came up with predictions for the public relations industry for the year 2011. Looking back at the past decade, the media industry has faced major challenges – from shifting focus to online presence and readership, to keeping up with new online media competitors that attracted more and more attention and advertising revenue.

Black points out that the recent social revolution has gotten industry people on the edge of their seats once more.

Online social networks have taken on the function of crowdsourced news editors, allowing end users to visit one site to get just about all the news and trending info they need. And now, mobile devices such as the iPad are in the mix, inspiring a major change in media infrastructure and sitting in the center of media strategies for leading print publications.

With these rapid changes in mind, what should PR practitioners focus on while creating plans and campaigns for this year?

Black has presented these 5 pointers.

1. Social Sharing of News

Expect more PR strategies that emphasize social sharing, using stories that inspire controversy or go against the grain and thus have a better chance of being re-tweeted. PR professionals will find an increasing demand to include social sharing metrics in evaluating the success of a program.

2. Increase in “Direct Editorial”

As media companies turn to content-driven ad placements for revenues, more company execs will lend their knowledge to prominent publications. Also, more companies will get into corporate blogging, as promoting blog content becomes easier than ever through social media.

3. Greater Demand for Exclusives

Take one bit of breaking news right this moment and you’ll find a few dozen different websites featuring the same story. As people demand for more new information on a certain topic, journalists and publications are veering more towards in-depth reporting that offers more detail and insight to stand out from the pack.

4. Growth in Multimedia

As publications strive to create visually-rich content keep their audience engaged, PR professionals should direct creative efforts towards producing podcasts and video interviews to complement online and print stories.

5. Data, Graphics and Apps

Visual representation of data, original research and apps are all the more important in bringing stories and getting the message across to the online audience. Expect a more sophisticated presentation of these data to supplement stories.

See the original article here.

Matt Cutts: Speed, internal links and CMS optimized and Social Media for SEO

If you were an in-house SEO of an advanced level, within a large corporation, what 3 things would you make sure you had included in your 2011 strategy?

Matt Cutts, of Google, includes Social Media as one of his big three.

How Powerful are Your Tweets?

Say it in 140 characters

What can a status update or a tweet, all 140 characters or less, do to change a life? Looking at the day-to-day updates of your 500+ friends on Twitter, tweets are typically mundane in nature, with topics ranging from what you ate for breakfast to that latest movie you’re raving or ranting about. But in these times, when social media has just begun to reach audiences from all walks of life and bring people together for various reasons, a tweet with those few, carefully chosen words can really make an impact and change everything.

KFC Asked for Twittered Scholarship Applications

Take for instance the KFC Colonel’s Scholars program. With 2.5 million college scholarships granted every year in the United States, KFC needed to do something different to generate buzz around their 75-scholarship project. Together with PR firm Weber-Shandwick, KFC decided to award one $20,000 scholarship to the winner of a tweet contest. High school seniors took a shot at convincing KFC execs that they deserved the scholarship in just 140 characters (hash tag #KFCScholar required).

In just 2 weeks, the KFC Twitter account saw a 20% increase in followers. A story on USA Today announced the scholarship tweet campaign generated over a thousand media placements and media impressions in the tens of millions. That includes AP Wire stories, several stories on CNN Headline News, MSNBC, NBC, and The Weather Channel. Online, tweets generated during the 10-day entry period translated to over nine million social media impressions.

The $20,000 winning Tweet

Meanwhile, logging onto Twitter from Long Beach, California, seventeen year old high school senior Amanda Russell followed and tweeted, “Hey Colonel! Your scholarship’s the secret ingredient missing from my recipe for success! Got the grades, drive, just need cash!”

Just how powerful are your tweets? Amanda’s was powerful enough, besting 2,800 others and winning her the $20,000 college scholarship.

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