Video: Google News Offers Tips, Best Practices for Editors, Publishers

This 15-minute video is totally worth your time if you’re a publisher, editor or Webmaster looking to optimize your news content for Google News. In it, Maile Ohye of Google talks about best practices and answers frequently asked questions about how Google News crawls, indexes and ranks news stories in Google News, an important (and controversial) hub of breaking news content and a significant driver of traffic to news sites.

Video: The Do’s and Don’ts Of Using Twitter in the Workplace

Click to watch the segment

Click to watch the segment

Today on “Today’s THV This Morning,” I sat down with Charles Crowson (who tweets @CCrowson016) to talk about what can happen when your Twitter life affects your work life. Or, rather, when you say something stupid on Twitter and your boss finds out.

Just as users are having to learn to watch what they post on Facebook, MySpace and blogs, so too are they having to be more careful about what they say on the fast-growing microblogging service. Twitter’s very nature — a quick, easy-to-use service that allows you to post stream-of-conscience thoughts almost as a reflex via desktop and mobile platforms — lends itself to accidental misuse. And once you say something on the Internet, it’s hard to take it back.

Careerbuilder.com has numerous examples of workplace horror stories stemming from Twitter misuse. In that vein, I offered some simple do’s and don’t for professionals who use Twitter to help them avoid such workplace gaffes.

Don’t

1) Bad-mouth co-workers or your company – Lots of people mistake the Web as a place to vent. But it’s simply not professional to go online and rip your boss, your co-workers and your employer. Even though these people might not be your Twitter followers, they can see your updates by going to your Twitter.com account. And even if you’ve protected your updates to followers only, there’s always the risk that what you say in the heat of the moment could be retweeted.

2) Complain about your the specifics of your job – We all have boring aspects of our jobs, and everyone has a bad day every once in a while. But again, your tweets can reflect poorly on your employer. If you want to stay employed, you’ll want to keep those feelings in check.

3) Talk about your salary, good or bad
– Just as you wouldn’t talk about your raise in front of a co-worker, you shouldn’t brag about that bump in pay you just got. At the same, hard as it might be, refrain from gripes about salary or benefits cuts.

4) Conduct a job search out in the open – As great as social networks and Twitter can be in the job hunt, be careful about openly inquiring about new jobs at other companies, unless you want to be outed early and possibly dismissed before you’re ready to make a switch.

5) Overshare personal tidbits that could reflect poorly on your company
– It’s probably not a good idea to talk about how drunk you got last night. And watch those late-night postings to Twitpic that might not seem so funny the morning after.

After the jump, some suggestions about what to do to keep your personal and professional lives in harmony on Twitter.

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Jim Karrh On Social Media and Making It Work For Your Business

Arkansas Business marketing columnist Jim Karrh this week takes a look at social media and how to make it work for you business. Social media has been the business topic du jour, but info about 1) deciding whether social media is right for your company and 2) how to choose what social media channels to use has been at a premium.

So too has balanced, level-headed considerations about how useful social media can be. Karrh signals that he’s taking a sober view of the topic in his first graf:

This column is neither a breathless ode to social media nor an overly skeptical “have you noticed the dropout rate on Twitter” rant. My recent speaking and consulting engagements tell me that it’s simply time for a reality check and guide to social media – from a business decision-maker’s perspective.

Now that we’ve all taken a deep breath and calmed down, Karrh quizzes Mack Collier, a blogger at, er, MackCollier.com, and The Viral Garden about the keys to business blogging success, social media and social media’s relevance to business in Arkansas.

More from both after the jump.

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UPDATE: Ed Nicholson’s BlogWell Presentation

Update: Thanks to Phil Neiman at GasPedal for forwarding video of the presentation. More BlogWell vids here.

Original post:

Ed Nicholson of Tyson Foods, who blogged here last month about his experiences at the BlogWell conference in New York City, has his presentation at the conference posted at the BlogWell site. We’ve embedded it above.

The slideshow talks about how major companies can use social media for specific goals. Nicholson, director of Tyson Foods’ community and public relations, talks about how the meat processor has used blogs, Flickr, YouTube and Twitter toward its hunger relief goals. And if offers several tips about what companies must do to use social media properly. You don’t simply go set up a Twitter account — there must be a larger strategy in place, ways to accurately measure success and a willingness to commit to the two-way street that is social media.

But we’ll let Nicholson do the talking. Click to read slides from his presentation above. And click here and here to read his posts for this blog on BlogWell.

(Thanks to Nicholson and Clark for the heads up.)

The Hendren Gaffe: Lessons for All of Us!

People are still writing about Kim Hendren, the possible candidate for U.S. Senate (no papers yet!) who stuck his foot in his mouth recently re: Chuck Schumer. There’s been all kinds of political commentary on that, including some discussion of the matter between Little Rock blogger Blake Rutherford and I. Barry Goldberg, an executive coach who writes a column for Arkansas Business. That discussion noted here.

In addition to political and social matters, Goldberg’s been thinking about the Hendren gaffe from a communications standpoint and points to lessons we can all learn about “leadership communications.” Not surprisingly, the Hendren gaffe is a perfect example of what not to do!

Among those lessons, from Goldberg’s Leader’s Notebook blog:

If you are going to apologize, apologize. Justification, reframing and excuses are not an apology.

When he was taken-to-task about the statement by an Arkansas blogger, Hendren endeavored to apologize.  Unfortunately, his attempt only made matters worse.  An apology made with conditions, explanations, justification and reserve is not an apology.  Hendren’s effort managed to include them all.  The press, the blogsphere (conservative and liberal alike) and the public fed on this further communication snafu like a steak dinner.  The comments that drew the most fire had to do with his justification that there are Jews he admires, especially Jesus; and, that he was just “…attempting to explain that unlike Senator Schumer, I believe in traditional values, like we used to see on The Andy Griffith Show.”

And if you are going to apologize, apologize for the right thing.  In another comment, Hendren says “I made the mistake of referring to Sen. Schumer as ‘that Jew’ and I should not have put it that way, as this took away from what I was trying to say.” So, the problem, in Hendren’s view, is not that he should not have brought Schumer’s faith into the argument, but that he distracted listeners from his actual point.

Goldberg has more practical lessons we can all learn. And in the end, he notes, it was Schumer who provided the best example of how to conduct one’s self in an unfortunate matter such as this, with his succint statement, “Apology accepted.”

A Mind of Moms Wrap-Up with Natalie Ghidotti

mindmoms

More at Mindofmoms.com

As we told you earlier this week, Little Rock PR guru Natalie Ghidotti of Ghidotti Communications attended this week’s Mind of Moms summit in northwest Arkansas.

The one-day summit, held in Bentonville and attended by more than 150 people, including representatives from major corporations, aimed to connect businesses with moms who blog. These so-called “mommy bloggers” are an influential community of passionate writers and devoted followings. It’s not surprise businesses want to reach them.

Today, Ghidotti shares her impressions of the event, as well as some tips she picked up from some of the sessions. You can follow Ghidotti on Twitter at @Ghidotti.

By Natalie Ghidotti

So, I’m a mom, but not a blogger — yet. The recent Mind of Moms conference piqued my interest because:

1) I’m a mom, and I love helping clients better understand moms, and

2) The “mommy blogger”” truly intrigues me, and I want to know more.

My Questions

So what about these “mommy bloggers?” Do they blog in their pajamas with a baby on their hip? Do they dish on every bad experience they have with a product? Do they have readership beyond best friends? Are other moms, like myself, reading these blogs and choosing Colgate toothpaste because @momadvice or @dealseekingmom told her to?

I got all these answered and more at Tuesday’s one-day conference. The fact is, for consumer marketers, these “mommy bloggers” (a name some of them aren’t fond of) are an important group. They reach a coveted group of busy moms who make all the purchasing decisions in the home. Moms are the ones choosing which coffee to brew and which laundry detergent to use on that next load.

Mommy bloggers, such as @geekmommy and @katjapresnal, can spread your message faster than @Oprah and can be talking about brands before you ever get close to being on Oprah’s schedule.

Rules of Engagement

With that in mind, companies are on a quest to determine how to best engage these mom bloggers with their brands. As a former print journalist, I was surprised to find out that the rules of engagement with these bloggers is quite different than when reaching out to traditional journalists.

After the jump, a few things for companies to keep in mind when “pitching” mom bloggers on your brand.

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Business and Social Media: An Overview from New York’s BlogWell Conference

Now that social media like Facebook and, to some degree, Twitter are entrenched in many people’s lives, businesses of all sizes are starting to wonder how they might use those tools to engage users online.

This week, with the help of two Arkansans involved in how businesses use social media, we’re going to find out 1) what businesses want to know about social media and 2) how three major national firms are using it to enhance their brands.

Both will share their experiences attending last week’s BlogWell conference in New York, where representatives of the some of the world’s biggest brands met to swap case studies on how they use social media.

Jones

Jones

So who are they?

First, we’ll hear from Bryan Jones, who is director of interactive services for CJRW of Little Rock, the state’s largest advertising, marketing and public relations firm. Jones, who’s all over the Web, works with brands including JCPenney and Toyota.

In a post here tomorrow, he’ll the stage with more info on BlogWell, including why it’s a crucial event for him professionally and what specific questions companies had about social media.

Next, we’ll hear from Ed Nicholson, director of community and public relations for Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale. We’ve noted Ed Nicholson’s work before. Nicholson has had a lot of experiencing using social media and blogs to further the meat processor’s goals to fight hunger throughout the country.

Nicholson

Nicholson

In posts on Wednesday and Thursday, he’ll share what big lessons he learned from the conference about businesses should use social media, what issues companies will face when entering the social media arena and, finally, some highlights from three case studies he attended by Coca-Cola, General Electric and Nokia.

Big thanks to Jones and Nicholson for agreeing to share their BlogWell and social media experiences. We hope this will be helpful to Arkansas businesses and organizations of all sizes who are considering social media strategies.

After the jump, a day-by-day schedule of links to all the posts in our social media blog series.

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