All my Notes from BlogWorld Expo #bweny #BEA #beabloggercon

New York CityFor those interested, here’s a list of all my notes from Blogworld Expo, BookExpo America, and the BEA Bloggers conference in one handy place.

There’s some really good stuff here – but it’s a LOT to go through, too. I know I will be going through these, sharing some at work, and pondering others for my own blog. Enjoy!

Blogworld sessions:

BEA Sessions:

BEA Blogger’s Conference sessions:

Facebook Marketing #Blogworld

blogworldpresenter: Amy Porterfield – website and Facebook Page

OK – wow. She had a lot of stuff to say, and said it fast. I was typing fast and furious, and definitely missed stuff. Including the actual title of her presentation :-) Definitely focused on Facebook marketing though. If you want some tips, tricks, and next steps for your organization’s Facebook Page, read on!

Big picture outcome for Facebook: Why are you on Facebook? 

  • goal is to choose 2-3 core outcomes that are aligned with your overall business goals
  • key is to prioritize your outcomes – and don’t pile on too much at once
  • be realistic, yet aggressive
  • Your goal might be product promotion, relationship building, build authority, increase revenue, etc.
  • Great point – if you have a Facebook Page, and no one’s doing anything there … you are wasting your time. So figure out what you want people to do next, and start planning for that.

Seven Facebook Marketing tips for Facebook Pages

#1: Know your Platforms

  • profile vs Page.
  • You can have only one profile, and it must be in your name.
  • A Page is for your business to engage, promote and sell.

You need both!

  • when you have both, you get double the exposure
  • your profile will likely get more engagement
  • you can only have 5000 friends with a personal profile
  • You can’t target your Friends via Facebook Ads
  • You can’t create opt-in opportunities on your Profile

#2: Add a Subscribe Button

  • The subscribe button allows anyone on Facebook to view your public profile posts
  • if someone subscribes to your profile, your public posts will now go directly into their News feed
  • It lifts the 5000 Friends barrier

Why add the subscribe button?

  • if someone requests to become a friend, they are instantly subscribed to your public posts
  • people feel a stronger connection to you through your profile vs your page

#3: Impeccable Branding

  • Use the Timeline cover to draw attention to something in your custom apps
  • Point to stuff you want people to do
  • What’s the next step you want people to do – point to that

#4: Create a Timeline Photo Strategy

  • put up different photos
  • If you’re advertising something, put that up.

Restrictions for Timeline Cover Photos (Facebook apparently has some restrictions for Timeline photos!):

  • no price or purchase info
  • no contact info
  • no reference to Like or Share or any Facebook site features
  • no calls to action
  • no promotions, coupons or ads
  • no URL

Cover photo should not be primarily text-based

Timeline cover photo strategy

  • use text and images together
  • Mari Smith ads notes to her audience in her timeline cover image
  • change the image regularly – it makes it more interesting
  • People are there to look at images, watch videos, have a little fun – so make it fun

#5: Create a Custom App Strategy

  • Lujure.com – third party tool for creating a customer Facebook App
  • customfanpagedesigns.com – another customer Facebook app company
  • next step – what do you want your fans to do? Create opt-in opportunities behind the custom app.
  • add stuff to subscribe to, sign up for, etc
  • use action words for your apps – Sign up, watch, enroll now, etc
  • keep people inside Facebook, and that helps build people’s trust.

Custom App How-to:

  • showing how to swap positions, change names, etc. There’s an Edit Settings area. Use a Call to Action for the name of the app.
  • Make sure to use a thumbnail!

Side tip: Grow your fan base first, then start using Facebook Ads

#6: Take advantage of the new Engagement features:

pinning

  • this appears at the very top of your Facebook Page, and stays there for 7 days.
  • Include a picture or a video, and a call to action.

Highlighted Posts

  • it stretches across the whole timeline.
  • Do both on a weekly basis

scheduled posts

  • you can do this through Facebook now – you don’t have to use Hootsuite. Cool.

Promoted Posts

  • at any one time, only 16% of your fans see your posts. Promote it, and Friends of fans will see it too.
  • This costs money.
  •  You can only target with language and location.

Engagement is still the key to marketing smart on Facebook

  • example – one guy does something, say creates something. Then tells people, and asks them to say yes (in a comment) and click Like if they want it. Comments count more than likes – so his engagement goes up.
  • Don’t post unless you have a call to action. Ask people to do stuff! Ask for likes, comments, etc.

Facebook Insights:

  • Look at the current posts view weekly, and find the stuff that’s working well – then do more of that.
  • Her most popular posts were because she ran Page Post ads – it helped her get more engagement. They are simply ads that let you click Like or leave a comment.

#7: Create an Image Campaign

  • Images on Facebook are popular – most popular stuff on Facebook
  • build a campaign around the images
  • think about your content, and get that content in an image.
  • gave an example of this – she created an image with a quote, and added the photo of the person who said the quote (i.e.., Seth Godin). People loved these!
  • posted them one a day before a launch for a campaign

Create a lead generating visual campaign

  • text based image…
  • add the link to the thing in the status update
  • Use an image as a call to action – click Like if you agree.

Q & A: Facebook Groups. She uses them for niche or stuff with a narrower focus.

Q & A: Scheduling posts? You have to figure out the best time for your fans. So experiment to find the best time to post.

Q & A: Engagement ads – click Like if … type of an ad. When they click Like, they become a Fan of your Facebook Page.

Q & A: why send people to a custom app instead of your website? Current behavior – people want to stay inside Facebook. Build a strategy around the behavior people are already doing.

Q & A: how do you get likes? Add a like box on your website. They become an instant fan. Get active outside of Facebook.

Podcasting 101: Planning and Prep #blogworld

blogworldPanelists: Dave Jackson, Daniel J. Lewis, Dan Lyons, and Ray Ortega

4 Steps to podcast:

  1. prepare a topic
  2. Record yourself
  3. publish to the internet
  4. share and promote

How much time and money does it take to start a podcast? it depends. Easiest way to get started – a USB microphone. Plug and play = easy.

$100 in basic audio equipment, $100 per year for website. Free music, sound effects, and software. IT’s the price of a basic hobby.

4:1 ratio – 4 minutes of prep and production to every 1 minute of audio

Why are you podcasting?

  • hobby – less budget, less time
  • side business
  • full-time job or part of your job

Determine your passion and podcast about that. Podcast what you know about. What’s in your RSS feed.

Start with a wide net. Look at iTunes top-level categories. If you see other similar topics, don’t be discouraged. It might be a dead show, or it might just mean lots of people want to listen.

Have a long-term plan. Use a whiteboard (me – or a mindmap, or a notebook, etc). Brainstorm and write down a subject. Then figure out your angles, figure out what your audience might want to know about it, etc. Write down future titles of posts…

How niche can you go?

Average podcast has about 40 listeners.

Improve or enhance a topic already covered.

Title: be descriptive! Bad – the John Smith podcast. Good – how to be awesome! So be descriptive and short. Easy to spell and understand. Avoid ambiguous words. Avoid accidental words. Always try to get the dot com version.

Choose a format:

solo or co-host? Figure it out.

Length and frequency… let the strength of your content determine the length of your show.

Audio or video? Both can work. Have fun and do what works for you. Video – more likely to be shared. iTunes is great, but Youtube is HUGE. People like to put a face to the voice. It’s also harder to edit, to set up, etc.

Ask this – does it need to be seen? Can you show it? If it’s audio-only, you need to remember that no one can see what you’re talking about. So you have to describe it.

Audio is easier to dump into your iPod.

Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World #Blogworld

blogworldPresenter: Michael Hyatt

Was CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers, a very traditional Publisher, he realized that someone needed to figure out new media, so he jumped in with both feet. Nice – more leaders need to do this!

All the world’s a stage – William Shakespeare… and it’s very true today!

164 million blogs. Wow. 1 million new books published last year. Youtube content … etc. point – there is a LOT of noise being created.

You need a platform. A thing to stand on so you can be heard.

Today’s platforms are made of people. Fans, friends, followers.

He started a blog in 2004, mainly to help him think (he thinks better when he writes).

His blog traffic jumped up hugely. 1st four years, he didn’t have much blog traffic. Huge jump in 2008 (from 700 to 20,000 unique visitors). In 2008, he decided to become consistent – two posts a week.

Thought Twitter was silly, but got his family to join, so he cared about who he followed. And he made his executive team sign up.

Most people quit right before the inflection point. So keep going!

Has a new book out – Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World.

Three Benefits to having a platform:

  1. Visibility – provides a way for others to see you
  2. Amplification
  3. Connection

Build Your Platform:

Plank 1: Start with Wow. The gap between someone’s expectations and experience – that’s where you deliver the wow.

But – balance that with shipping. Consistently deliver your product (be that writing, podcasting, etc). Just do it – even if it feels like it’s not the best thing there.

Plank 2: Prepare to launch. It’s a process, not an event. You are the chief marketing officer, and you have to take responsibility for the outcome. Don’t abdicate. If you are a book author – you are in charge. Blog? You are in charge. Etc.

Plank 3: Build your home base. Social Media Framework.

  1. Need a Home Base – a place you own and control (i.e., my blog is my Home Base).
  2. Second element – embassies – social media services that you don’t own or control, but you put regular content there, and send them back to your home base. He has primary and secondary ones.
  3. Third element – outposts. He uses Google Alerts for this. He listens, and answers those questions when needed.

Plank 4: expand your reach. Interruption based marketing (traditional commercials) is dying. Marketing today is sharing. Sharing what you are interested in and passionate about. HE sees a dip in traffic and engagement when he talks about himself.

Plank 5: Engage your tribe. Gave some examples of tribes – Dave Ramsey fans, Harley Davidson fans. Keep comments open. Don’t use those captcha things that are hard to read … don’t make it hard for people to comment.

If you invite people to dinner, and then don’t show up? That’s weird. If you respond to every comment? Also weird.

The 20-to-1 rule. For every withdrawal you make, you need to make about 20 deposits…

Power up your blog: Lessons Learned Over 11 Years of Blogging #Blogworld

blogworld

First up, Tom Webster: Edison Research:

Funny – he read some of his spam for us. I think he does this in a podcast format sometimes.

Next up: Founders of Blogworld. They are changing the name of Blogworld & New Media Expo to … New Media Expo (NMX). Makes sense.

Next up: Chris Brogan

Anyone had the feeling that you just wrote your best post ever, and it goes nowhere … but a throwaway post gets huge? He’s had that (I have too).

“I’m too busy to blog right now” – shut up already. Everyone’s too busy. How do you find time? Don’t get distracted by emails, social media, etc. Write in time bits – 20 minutes or so at a time.

Make a framework for how you blog. For example – find a pic, write something personal first, then write 2-3 paragraphs about the topic, then ask for something at the end. Chris usually writes using this frame.

Practice. Like musicians. Work on having passion in your work.f you have really great technical skills but don’t have passion, you won’t go far.

“I don’t know how to find any topics” – take lots of photos. Then turn it into a post. This gets you out of one type of thinking and into another.

Put emotions into your post. People connect with that.

Making money on your blog – Google Adsense won’t get you too far. Amazon Affiliates won’t get you there either. In fact, most of the ways you find money will be indirectly. Affiliate programs might be useful.

Don’t ever write “sorry, I haven’t written on this blog in awhile.” Just write. Try to get it to once a week.

If you have a huge sidebar with links to Twitter, Youtube, etc – you are sending people away from your content and your home base site.

Don’t worry about being consistent. Especially if you’re just having fun.

If you think of your blog as a business, look at magazines, and figure out what magazine you are.

There are a lot of knobs to fiddle with – don’t pay too much attention to those. He gets lots of questions like “should I use disqus or livefire for comments?” His answer – who cares?

Pride does not replace hard work. He gets lots of praise and lots of criticism. Both are a trap. Believe the praise, and you become a jerk. Don’t believe the haters either. Nothing replaces the hard work. It took Chris 8 years to get his first 100 readers.

Always reply. Don’t suck up to the big guy – talk to the little guys.

The hard work isn’t writing a blog … it’s connecting with people and talking to them with their stuff. Remember their names.

Be yourself, and be brave.