Social Media

How to Add Your Boss, Parents as Facebook Friends

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Many users of Facebook, after rushing to fill their list of friends, have inadvertently found their previously distinct worlds of family, friends, and work suddenly colliding.  Sometimes with serious consequences.  When you are connected to hundreds (sometimes thousands?) of people on the social network, it can be easy to forget who can see your boastful tales of ditching work or the photos of your late night escapades.

As a result, some people are becoming more cautious about who they “friend” on Facebook, particularly when it comes to authority figures like parents or a boss.  Fortunately, there is an easy way to add “Facebook Friends” with whom you’d rather not share everything.

First, should we consider perhaps that this increased level of visibility, that comes with a more social internet, gives us a reason to examine our words and deeds more carefully?  If there are things we wouldn’t want certain people know we’ve said or done, is it possible that those are things we shouldn’t say or do in the first place?  Nah.  Let’s just find a way around it.  Here is a way to keep select people from seeing more than what you want them to see. (more…)

Manage Your Internet Reading List

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As a follow-up to my article “Tools to Organize Your Digital Life“, I wanted to share a tip on how to create a reading list to manage all those web items that catch your eye but you can’t read immediately (like maybe this article?).  As we are tweeted and buzzed from our growing social networks, we stumbleupon many articles or links that we think we might digg.  However, we often don’t have the time, nor is it usually productive, to read them at the moment we happen to find them.  So, how can you remember to revisit these links later … without leaving a lot of tabs open that will clutter and slow down your web browser?  You don’t simply want to save them along with your other bookmarks.  You’ll likely just forget about them, and you don’t even know yet if they are items you want to keep. (more…)

Tools to Organize Your Digital Life

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Everyday we find more and more online sources of news and information that we would like to connect with to stay informed. The challenge is keeping up with our favorite news columns, industry journals, and blogs as well as our friends, family, and colleagues … not to mention maybe a few celebrities, tv programs, and products.  While bookmarking sites like Yahoo! Bookmarks and Delicious make good reference tools, they don’t actively notify us of updates.  Most websites provide the option to sign up for updates and newsletters by email, but this can make your inbox more difficult to manage (and you still often have to visit the individual websites to see the full content).  If you are an email subscription junkie, you should use Filters to organize your mailbox.  In most mail applications, you can setup filters to automatically sort your incoming mail into folders based on email address, subject line, etc.  This keeps lower-priority emails out of your inbox, but easy to find.

Almost any person, place, or thing you may have an interest in following has a presence on Facebook and Twitter these days.  Many professional, educational, and industry organizations have pages or forums on LinkedIn.  There are also numerous other niche communities for specific interests including music, photos, and recipes.  While these sites enable you to connect to a large number of people and organizations, the downside of most of these networks is that you have to continually monitor your real-time information streams and filter through them to find the items of most interest to you, which can be time consuming. (more…)

Internet Marketing Is More Than Just Your Website

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By now, all small business owners have gotten the message loud and clear how critical it is to have a great website.  We’ve been told to focus on clickthroughs, vistors, page hits, and how to use search engine optimization (SEO) to make those numbers as big as possible.  We were then encouraged to start sending email newsletters to maintain our customers’ interest and keep them coming back to our website.  Next we heard that we should invest in “pay-per-click” or “pay-per-impression” advertising to drive more visitors to our website.  While it is important to have a professional website that reflects your business and your brand, and to use search engines and email marketing to increase visibility and traffic, that is only the starting point these days.  Your website is merely the ante that gets you in the game.  Your goal shouldn’t be simply to get as many people to your website as possible, it should be to connect and engage with your customers wherever they may be.  There are many ways to accomplish this that are inexpensive or free. (more…)

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