Archive for July, 2010

Start Your Social Media Tactics with Tips from “Social Media 101?

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Social Media 101With the growth in social media, it was inevitable that there would be a corresponding growth in social media books.  With a strong Twitter following (over 141,000 and counting), Chris Brogan, New Media president and longtime blogger, would be a fitting author to weigh in with a social media advisory book of his own.

Co-founder of the PodCamp “unconference”and co-author of Trust Agents, Brogan has spoken, consulted and blogged on social media.  He has condensed tips and tricks from his past experiences into a book called Social Media 101: Tactical Tips to Develop Your Business Online.

Hymnal-sized, Social Media 101 checks in at 313 pages thick.  It is divided into 87 segments, each a few pages long and consisting of tips on subjects such as blogging, incorporating video, podcasting and developing an online social community.

A reminder of the human side of social media

Brogan offers many tips, including the following which I felt worked well:

  • Blog Topics for Business-to-Business Customers — I liked the suggestion to look at Technorati to see how your company or industry is being mentioned, as well a tip to write about your customers.
  • Five Starter Moves for Audio and Video — Very short but useful for those wanting an idea of how to supplement an online presence.
  • The Power of Links — This segment contains a unique point of view on how links can be viewed by your customers and the implications.
  • Write Your LinkedIn Profile for Your Future These tips are steps you may have taken already, but Brogan explains them in an universal way.

The book is best taken as a collection of personal tips that may or may not be relevant to how you use social media.  Readers will find anecdotal information that will elicit a head nod and a “Yeah, I can use that.” I liked Brogan’s tip, “Don’t ever say quick question” (“It is almost always not.”)  My thought when I read that was indeed, with a nod to myself, “Yeah, I can use that.”

Brogan conveys thoughtful tips regarding human behavior and social media.  For example, a suggestion to write about your bad moments could easily complement other books like The Economics Of Integrity regarding transparency and authenticity as business assets.  Brogan writes:

“This might be counterintuitive, but your business partners might occasionally appreciate knowing when something is going tough for you…but in the event of a public-facing product or service issue it’s probably best to get it out there rather than sit on it. “

He also muses on often-blogged topics such as social media experts and then repeats the theme in other segments.  For example, Brogan explains how he adapts the concepts of expert and adviser from David Maister’s book Strategy and the Fat Smokers — that an expert is in control and is to be heeded above others, while an adviser offers opinions and seeks a give-and-take conversation.  He later declares a segment “What I Want a Social Media Expert to Know” with tips along strategic and tactical lines.  This also ties into an overall spirit of crowdsourcing for support:

“I learned a long time ago that the folks who spend time with me know more than me in the aggregate….so ask for it. Seek information. Learn from them.”

See how the content works for your needs

The book’s structure, with its blog-like segment titles and 313-page length, can sometimes present unclear topic arcs.  Thus, while tips easily stand out from one another, a reader may lose the connecting arc of thought and flip repeatedly to find where the associated tips appeared.   I would have liked to have seen the musing of the aforementioned expertise example and “What I Want a Social Media Expert to Know” segment closer together rather than appearing at opposite ends of the book.  While the tips are great for readers who have no clue about social media, readers seeking step-by-step processes may consider noting the order of wanted tips to their tastes and needs.  A note: Brogan admits at the book’s opening that certain ideas were meant to be repeated and sprinkled throughout the book.  You can judge the flexibility of the arrangement for yourself.

I had also wished in some instances that a few subjects were treated in a longer format to capture more of the nuances of the suggestions.  For example, Brogan recommends Google Analytics, alongside CrazyEgg, for blog measurement, but there is no mention of recent social media analytic tools, like PostRank and Mixpanel, that may give a deeper examination of blog-related metrics.  A segment called “Programming for the Masses: Social Computing” references Nicholas Carr, Paul Graham and David Weinberger and how “we’re learning bits of programming for this new social computing every day.” Yet there is no coding example or any deeper elaboration beyond the observations.  But those readers new to social media may be okay with the earnest comments on what Brogan is seeing online today.

Useful starting book for social media.

Admittedly, social media can be a mountain of a writing subject to conquer because of the frequently increasing features of Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms that rapidly introduce new usage and strategy considerations (maybe too rapidly).  Social Media 101 will not be a fail whale for those are new to social media. Readers seeking the next-level social media guide for establishing  strategy ideas may want a little more elaborate demonstrations than those provided, but Social Media 101 can still be the quintessential quick guide that reminds one on what social media is all about.

From Small Business Trends

Start Your Social Media Tactics with Tips from “Social Media 101″

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Rompetrol Bulgaria Boss Arrested in Brawl with Parliament Head Security – Report

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

One of the two Romanians arrested Saturday for assaulting the security guards of the Bulgarian Parliament Speaker is the CEO of Rompetrol Bulgaria, according to information from the Bulgarian National Radio.

Rompetrol Bulgaria is the Bulgarian subsidiary of Romanian oil giant Rompetrol, which has a considerable market share in Bulgaria.

Expect details….

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Bulgarian Police: No Outlaw Bikers in Bulgaria

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

The Bulgarian Ministry of Interior came out with a statement Saturday saying that at the present moment it has no information about criminal biker gangs being active in Bulgaria.

The statement refers to Europol’s Friday announcement that bikers such as Hells Angels and Bandidos are expanding their networks in South-Eastern Europe, including Bulgaria.

Saturday the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior stated: “At this point of time those groups do not pose a threat for security and public order in Bulgaria and there is no data that they are carrying out activities on our territory….

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Wildfires Rage on in Central Russia

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

More than 240,000 persons are engaged in taming wildfires that have been sweeping central Russia for the last couple of days, reports RIA Novosti Saturday.

Authorities are mustering all efforts to extinguish the disastrous flames, but to now avail at this time.

The fires have claimed the lives of at least 29 persons and have destroyed traditional villages with wooden houses, reports Deutsche Welle.

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Heart of Midlothian Fined Heavy for Playing Hardball

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

The Heart of Midlothian have to pay a record GBP 60,000 fine imposed by the Scottish Football Association for being the most ruthless team in the Scottish Football League, reports BGNES.

The Edinburgh team scores a sixth season of being Scotland’s most rough playing team and has a month to pay GBP 50,000 of the fine. For the 2009-2010 season, the Hearts have 10 red cards and 89 yellow cards on they record.

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Bulgarian Socialists Muster ‘Will to Change, Strength to Act’

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

35,000 Bulgarian socialists gathered Saturday at the yearly meeting of the Bulgarian Socialist Party at Buzludzha mountain in Bulgaria Central Stara Planina mountain range.

The traditional gathering marks the 1891 founding of the Bulgarian Social-Democratic Party – to which the Socialist Party is an heir – by Dimitar Blagoev and fellow socialists. Buzludzha is also the site of a historic battle in the 19-century fight for independence of Bulgaria.

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Socialist Leader: PM Borisov Wants One-Person Rule in Bulgaria

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Sergey Stanishev, the leader of the Bulgarian Socialist Party, accused the rule of current Bulgarian PM Boyko Borisov for being authoritarian, violent and incompetent at the Socialists’s yearly gathering at the top of Buzludzha mountain.

Stanishev explicated the acronym of Borisov’s GERB party as signifying Gang for One-person Regime by Borisov. Officially, the party acronym stands for Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria.

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French Activist: French Threat for Roma Extradition Disrespects Bulgaria’s EU Membership

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Activist Malik Salemkour from the leading French human rights watchdog Human Rights League (Ligue des droits de l’homme) said that the vow of French interior minister Brice Hortefeux to deport Roma from Bulgaria and Romania is discriminatory and disrespectful of the membership of the two countries in the EU.

Speaking for the Bulgarian National Radio Saturday morning, Selamkour characterized the words of the senior French government official as “scandalous.”

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Two Romanians Arrested in Brawl with Bulgarian Parliament Speaker Security

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Two Romanian citizens were arrested in Veliko Tarnovo after they entered in a brawl with the security guards of Speaker of Bulgarian Parliament Tsetska Tsacheva.

The two persons attempted to enter the Sevastokrator restaurant , which was reserved for Tsacheva and organizers and official guests of the Stage of the Ages festival held in Tarnovo over this and next weekend.

After being denied admission to the restaurant, the two Romanians assaulted the security guards of the Parliament Speaker, on which the latter called local police.

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EU Turning Blind Eye to Discrimination Against Roma

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

By The Guardian: Leigh Phillips (Brussels), Kate Connolly (Berlin) and Lizzy Davies (Paris).

Criticism comes in wake of France’s decision to expel illegal Roma immigrants and destroy hundreds of their encampments.

The European Union was today accused of “turning a blind eye” as countries across Europe carried out a wave of expulsions and introduced new legislation targeting the Roma.

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