Sunday, 10 July 2011

Google +

Finally made it onto Google+ yesterday. My husband tried to invite me last weekend but the invitation process was suspended, with Google being very selective again with their new launch. It works well for them in building up a certain level of hype: people talk about it, want to share it, but are restricted. So having finally made it on, I have to say my experience so far has been limited.

The search functionality feels odd to me. Particularly the mobile version (which is also in play on the iPad not just phone): for each page of search results it restarts the alphabetical sorting, so on p.1 you get results sorted from A-Z but then the same again for p.2 etc, instead of all A together, then B then C...

I also (partly because of the above I suppose) found it hard to find people I wanted to connect with. I couldn't search for Twitter or Facebook contacts for example. I couldn't find people I knew were using Google+ even when I typed their whole name in.

The circles concept is without a doubt both clever and unique, but at the minute there aren't enough people on here for me to use this optimally. In the meantime there are very few people in very few circles. The most populated - and where I see myself getting most use - is for following bloggers that I typically read rss or twitter feeds for currently. This might change as more people join, but Facebook isn't going anywhere any time soon...

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Blogging for business parts 7,8 and 9: content and posting

Creating editorial calendars is something we've been spending a lot of time on at work recently, as it really is critical to keeping momentum. We have several sites, some which had structured plans, and others which didn't. One of the key take aways for me from this section of The ebook was how we can optimise our posts using Google keyword search to identify what topics in our field at people are searching on.

A lot of planning at the outset of a new blog really does make it easier to kep a steady stream of content. The ebook has some great suggestions about this, including separating out ideas into different categories, such as education, reviews, background on company, etc.

There are good case studies, plus a walk through on uploading a new post.

More from previous posts about blogging for business here

Blogging for business part 4

Continuing on from part one and 2-3

Chapter 4 introduces the importance of a searchable blog name. SEO is an area I still need to learn lots more about so this is pertinent for me even though I am not currently setting up a new blog. The book sets out four top requirements for name selection: firslty selecting something optimised for search, which he suggests using the keyword search within Google Adwords to do (narrow your search according to the target audience you are trying to reach, to help identify what words will make the site appear most frequently in search results); is brandable/recognisable; is short; stands out from the competition.

FYI I'm going to be skipping over chapters 5 and 6 as they don't apply to me at all right now: setting up on Wordpress and the top 8 required plugins.