Social media business strategy

>> Monday, December 28, 2009

Great post about how companies can develop a social media strategy. 
Worth reading.


"Over the past few months, we’ve talked about whether you should have a social media policy and what should be included in that policy. It only seems logical to discuss the next step in the process, which is what to consider when implementing a social media strategy in your workplace.
Just having a policy isn’t good enough — you need a plan to put it in place. Here are five areas to discuss when implementing a social media strategy."


HOW TO: Implement a Social Media Business Strategy
By Sharlyn Lauby, Mashable


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Office hours

>> Friday, December 18, 2009

Very interesting idea. Clear your calendar and be available to your co-workers and customers.


"The concept of "office hours" for business goes back to a universal ritual from our college days. We'd take classes with professors who were busy, distracted from teaching with research in the lab or the library, and otherwise remote and unapproachable.  
But we knew that for a couple of hours, at least one day a week, we could stop by their office, ask for advice, try out an idea, and get the guidance we needed. 
(...)
So maybe it's time for you to join the movement. Why not carve out an hour or two a week, tell your colleagues and customers that you have cleared your schedule, that you'll be sitting in your office and that you hope to hear what they're worried about, excited about, or confused about."


Should You Hold "Office Hours"?
By Bill Taylor, Harvard Business Review


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Startups: Freedom of crashing into the wall

>> Thursday, December 17, 2009

Funny and wise advice. Trouble times can free you as it lead you to think, to fight and re-focus.
Worth reading.


"There’s a certain freedom in being completely fucked.
(...)
Crashing into the wall (unless that means you actually go bankrupt and you’re out of business) can free you. It gives you that chance."


Freedom
by Benjamin Yoskovitz, Instigator Blog


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From (too many) ideas to (a single) business

For all of those who have too many business ideas, this post may be truly helpful. 
How to solve a too-many-ideas problem and star your company.


“It's paralyzing to have multiple business ideas in your head, all vying for attention and energy.
Yet month after month, or sometimes year after year, you never move any of these ideas forward. This makes you want to tear your hair out.”


How to Choose a Business to Start
By Pamela Slim, American Express Open Forum


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Startups: Avoid Indecisiveness

>> Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Great post about decisiveness and why it's so important to startups survival. Worth reading.
Also believe it's true - Bad decisions can kill startups too. But indecision is worse!


"Startups die for lots of reasons. Of course the end game usually involves running out of money – until that point in time, you can still fight on (although it might not be worth it.) But at the root of many startup deaths is indecision, especially for first-time entrepreneurs and CEOs.
(...)
Indecisiveness kills startups. Don’t kill your startup because you’re stuck. Get unstuck."


Indecision Kills Startups
By Ben Yoskovitz, Instigator Blog


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Service as content

>> Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Very interesting perspective for service providers with few tips to enhance your service and create some physical touch; worth reading.


"The best way to tell customers about your service is by showing them. Service is content marketing, the most powerful kind of content that people will gladly share with each other when it's about them and their stuff.
(...)
Regardless of the industry or company you're in, you may start thinking about your service as content. How can you provide more visibility into how you do what you do?


Your Service is Content
By Valeria Maltoni, ConversationAgent


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6 reasons for a newsletter

6 good reasons that make newsletters an important business tool.
Even with low open rates, considering the cost of a newsletter, I agree that newsletters continue to be a good promotion tool.


"They might seem a little old-fashioned, but newsletters can be a great way to stay in touch with customers and prospects, and increase revenue to your business.
(...)
While I am a big advocate for blogging, I think newsletters are an equally powerful tool that can be used in a slightly different way to leverage your marketing efforts."


The Power of Newsletters
Web Worker Daily


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Brand definition

Worth reading Seth Godin definition for brand, brand value and why now, more then ever, brand and design are two different concepts.


"Design is essential but design is not brand."


define: Brand
By Seth Godin, Seth Godin's Blog


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What matters now

>> Monday, December 14, 2009

I share this with everyone interested in make something happen.
Seth Godin published a new (free) ebook with a collection of ideas from several big thinkers.
I personally salute Seth Godin, all who directly contribute with ideas for the ebook and all others that, around the globe, have been thinking and sharing ideas after the release of the ebook.


My personal thought and what matters for me now is Happiness!
Don’t waist time doing something you don't like if you believe you can do something great.


What Matters Now: get the free ebook
By Seth Godin


"Here are more than seventy big thinkers, each sharing an idea for you to think about as we head into the new year. From bestselling author Elizabeth Gilbert to brilliant tech thinker Kevin Kelly, from publisher Tim O'Reilly to radio host Dave Ramsey, there are some important people riffing about important ideas here. The ebook includes Tom Peters, Jackie Huba and Jason Fried, along with Gina Trapani, Bill Taylor and Alan Webber.
Here's the deal: it's free. Download it here. Or from any of the many sites around the web that are posting it with insightful commentary. Tweet it, email it, post it on your own site. I think it might be fun to make up your own riff and post it on your blog or online profile as well. It's a good exercise. Can we get this in the hands of 5 million people? You can find an easy to use version on Scribd as well and from wepapers. Please share."


Get the ebook here or at Seth Godin's original post.


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Now is the time to start

>> Friday, December 11, 2009

Great post with 7 good reasons to start a startup now. Starting in a recession is in fact an opportunity, not a threat.


"I see startups succeed or fail every day based on the qualities of the founders. The economy has some effect, certainly, but as a predictor of success it’s a rounding error compared to the founders. If you're worried about threats to the survival of your company, don't look for them in the news. Look in the mirror.
(...)
The way to start in a recession is to do exactly what you should do anyway: manage cash as tightly as possible. If you don’t quit, the most likely cause of death in a startup is running out of money. So the cheaper your company is to operate, the harder it is to kill. And fortunately it has gotten very cheap to run a startup.
The most popular day for starting a new company is the same as starting a new diet: Tomorrow. So take the leap today, not tomorrow. If you don’t get started now, the odds are you'll never start. If you are an entrepreneur at heart, don’t be doomed to a life of trudging through jobs, depending on someone else for salary and bonuses and health care and retirement, a life's work without ownership or upside."


A Down Economy is the Time for Startups
By Martin Zwilling, Startup Professionals Musings


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Tools for social media monitoring

Useful post with an interesting list of tools for social media monitoring. 
Also worth reading is the presentation with Marshall Sponder predictions for social media monitoring.


Top Tools for Social Media Monitoring
By Marshall Sponder (webmetricsguru.com), socialmediatodays


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Innovation: Clean your mind of "old think"

>> Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Must Read post about innovation and how your knowledge may be an obstacle to innovation.


"We are a race of innovators – born to use our imagination to create not only solutions to our most pressing problems (polio vaccine) but to also create the fun in our lives (pet rocks).   We only have to look as far as our kids to rediscover that fundamental draw to use our imagination to create something out of nothing.  Children are naturally superb innovators. They can create the most amazing toys from normal household items. Who would have thought of all the uses for a paper towel roll?
(...)
What we “know” is a greater obstacle than what we don’t know. But clearing our minds of our old thinking habits is as difficult as pushing all of the air out of a room."


Stupid Wins in the Game of Innovation
By Phil McKinney, The Blog of Phil McKinney


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Quadrants of Innovation

Interesting post with the four quadrants of innovation, according their technology and market impact.


"(...) I began thinking about the dynamics that apply when a firm pursues different kinds of innovation. A post by Venkatesh Rao, Disruptive versus Radical Innovations, was very useful for distinguishing between disruptive and radical innovations.
Building on that, I wanted a framework for delineating innovations based on their technology and business impacts. Because they're not necessarily the same."


Four Quadrants of Innovation
By Hutch Carpenter, Blogging Innovation


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Set a corporate blog

Worth reading. 6 good and money making reasons to maintain a corporate blog.


"Today still some business owners are not aware of the opportunities a blog can offer to their business.
To blog is not a question, it’s more a question to acknowledge that blogs are a great way to position your self as an expert in your field and to gain trust of your targeted audience and last but not least to win more business."


6 Money Making Reasons to Setup a Blog for Your Business
By Dragan Mestrovic, socialmediatoday


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Inspiration for entrepreneurs

Every entrepreneur must read. Why to start a business.


"So why become an entrepreneur? Three reasons: change the world, make customers' lives better and create an organization of lasting value. If you only want to do one of these things, there are better options. But only startups combine all three."


Blogger Logic: Eric Ries on Why You Should Start a Business
By Inc


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Goals for innovation

Worth reading post about the importance of setting goals for innovation. What you can get with a consistent set of goals over a long period of time might surprise you. 


"Typically one of the most significant strategic challenges for any innovation effort has to do with goals.
(...)
Since the natural inclination in most firms is to be cautious, this means that the goals for innovation are often set very low, which can result in incremental innovation. Successful innovation programs usually have very well defined and specific goals set by executives and carefully measured."


Innovation and Goal Setting
By Jeffrey Phillips, Innovate on Purpose


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Profits aren't everything, they're the only thing

>> Friday, December 04, 2009

Like the author says in his first advice, profits aren't everything, they're the only thing.
5 lessons to keep a business alive and cash flowing.
I admit I don't agree with deferring payments to vendors but I believe the article is worth reading anyway.


"You have to ask yourself: "Why am I in business? What's my goal?" Your answer should be to make profits. Why go into business if not to make as much profit as you possibly can? But you must have controls and processes in place--otherwise you become a slave to meeting the payroll and paying your vendors, and you end up struggling to keep the business alive."


Put Profits First--Always
5 tips to maintain financial control of your business and keep the cash flowing
By George Cloutier, Entrepreneur


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Start your wave

>> Thursday, December 03, 2009

Worth reading. Everyone, in particular small business owners, must read. 
Eleven (so simple) things that any company, no matter size or budget, can do (and keep doing!). The result can only be highly positive.
It's not too late.


Is it too late to catch up?
By Seth Godin, Seth Godin's Blog


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10 questions to keep asking

>> Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Great article with 10 questions every business owner must keep asking in order to keep their business alive. Everything changes with time - company, industry, customers, competitors, employes and so on; be sure about how the company fits in present environment.  


"Here are the 10 questions we should have been asking--the same questions that any business owner should continue to ask, year in and year out:"


The 10 Questions You Should Never Stop Asking
By Marc Kramer, Forbes


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Startups: How to set the price

Worth reading. A short but very interesting advice on how to set the price of your new product.


"Pricing is a difficult thing to get right in the marketing mix. Often we get all other 3 P’s (product, place promotion) right and that wrong…. and instead of revisiting it, we mess with the product."


How to price your product
By Steve Sammartino, Start Up Blog


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