Filter The NoiseBlog

We blog about design, technology, internet marketing and business on the web. As the name implies, we aim to "filter the noise" and share only the most relevant information. Feel free to chime in anytime with your thoughts and comments. Established 2004 in Colorado Springs, Colorado by HighTouch Web Design and Internet Marketing.

International Builder Show Jan 2011

Kim Kolb - Sunday, January 16, 2011

I have just returned from the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL where the International Builder Show (IBS) was held. 

This was the first time I have been to the International Builder Show. What a massive production. The show was held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. They had a beautiful sign out front with nice glittery lights.. Kinda made me think I was in Vegas. The Displays spanned the entire length of the West Building. I have been to a PartyLite Convention before and I thought it was a big production.

There were tons of seminars for Builders as well as networking opportunities.

I was attending this event because I was asked to be a speaker at the Convention. I was part of a panel that talked about the REDMAR process. I was asked to speak on this process and how Inbound Marketing relates to getting visitors to your site. I love it when I am asked to talk about Inbound Marketing. It really makes me feel like my job means something when I get a client who looks to me for advise on how to start or improve their on line marketing efforts.

Although my trip was only one day long. I do plan to go back to Orlando because there was tons of fun I did not have!

How is Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogging, Email Marketing and YouTube Affecting Your Business

Kim Kolb - Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Every month I like to reflect on how my on-line marketing efforts are working with my Social Media efforts and my website.  Here are tools I use, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Blogging. I have 3 Twitter Accounts, 2 Facebook Accounts, 2 Facebook Pages, 1 LinkedIn Account and 2 Blogs I maintain. Now these are not all my main business accounts with HighTouch Marketing and Design, I also have a passion for Wine in which that is another set of accounts in this mix.  I know what you are thinking..."How does she manage all those accounts?"  HootSuite is what I use, but TweetDeck is also another great tool.

So with all these accounts what is my goal for my business and my passion?  To drive traffic to them! Why? Why would you spend all this time on these marketing efforts and not have a plan?  If you are just aimlessly out there "Playing" then you are not serious about your business. If your goal is not to get more people to your website to find out about you and then to get them to convert to a lead/sale then you really need to stop your efforts. 

Converting a Lead/Sale is different for everyone. With my company HighTouch, my goal is to create traffic to my site so I can convert someone into getting a website redesigned or created and to help that customer market their business.  My Wine site on the other hand, a Lead/Sale is different.  Right now I am working on name recognition, trust and winery profiles. So a conversion can be different for the type of business you are in.

Tracking your efforts

There are great tools like Google Analytics, it is FREE, that you can use to track the traffic on your site, where people are coming from, what they are clicking on, etc.  Tracking your efforts is as important as the actual effort.  You can track all your social media and blogging efforts here as well as putting links on your site to drive traffic to those particular venues.

Here are some Cool Stats from my friend at Bonsai Interactive Marketing. Pay close attention as these stats show you that people are out there and they are searching for you.  What will they see when they find you?

Facebook Stats:

  • The average Facebook user has 130 friends.
  • More than 25 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts,
  • notes, photo albums, etc.) is shared each month.
  • More than 150 million people engage with Facebook on external websites
  • every month.
  • There are more than 100 million active users currently accessing Facebook
  • through their mobile devices.
  • The average Facebook user is connected to 60 pages, groups and events.
  • People spend over 500 billion minutes per month on Facebook.

Twitter Stats:

  • Twitter’s web platform only accounts for a quarter of its users – 75% use
  • third-party apps.
  • Twitter gets more than 300,000 new users every day.
  • There are currently 110 million users of Twitter’s services.
  • Twitter receives 180 million unique visits each month.
  • There are more than 600 million searches on Twitter every day.
  • Over 60% of Twitter use is outside the U.S.
  • More than a third of users access Twitter via their mobile phone

LinkedIn Stats:

  • LinkedIn is the oldest of the four sites in this ebook, having been created
  • on May 5 2003.
  • here are more than 70 million users worldwide.
  • Members of LinkedIn come from more than 200 countries from every
  • continent.
  • 80% of companies use LinkedIn as a recruitment tool.
  • A new member joins LinkedIn every second.
  • LinkedIn receives almost 12 million unique visitors per day.
  • Executives from all Fortune 500 companies are on LinkedIn.

Blogging Stats:

  • 77% of Internet users read blogs.
  • 60% of bloggers are between the ages 18-44.
  • One in five bloggers update their blogs daily.
  • Two thirds of bloggers are male.
  • Corporate blogging accounts for 14% of blogs.
  • 15% of bloggers spend 10 hours a week blogging.
  • More than 50% of bloggers have more than one blog.
  • Bloggers use an average of five different social sites to drive traffic to
  • their blog.

YouTube Stats:

  • The very first video uploaded was on 23rd April 2005.
  • By June 2006, more than 65,000 videos were being uploaded every day.
  • YouTube receives more than 2 billion viewers per day.
  • The U.S. accounts for 70% of YouTube users.

So what's the point to all this?  The point or rather the questions are:

  • Are you using On-line Marketing to drive traffic to your site?
  • Are you tracking your efforts?
  • What changes have you noticed, good or bad?
photo credit, jaxxshirts.com


Blogging is the Elephant in the Room

Kim Kolb - Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Blogging seems to be the Elephant in the room.  We all know we need to do it.  We know it is good for our business, yet it is the one thing on our todo list that just gets moved each day until we "have time".

Well, "It is time" to quote the Lion King.  Blog is not a bad 4 letter word.  In fact it is a great word! Think of Blogging as a "ray of sunshine" or that ahhh you get when you have that first sip of coffee in the morning.  

What is blogging?  Blogging is writing about something you are passionate about or are well versed in the subject matter.  When you blog about something you know and love, people look to you as a Thought Leader in that subject matter.  The biggest fear I hear from people is that they have nothing to write about.  I beg to differ.  If you have a business and you offer a service or product, you have something to say.

I read a newspaper article the other day and in the article, one of the people being interviewed talked about how if you are not on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, then you will be left behind.  Well, let's add Blogging to the mix.  Blogging, I would say is more important than the others because it is creating remarkable content on your site.  Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are avenues to tell people about your great content.  

Benefits of Blogging:
  • Provides fresh remarkable content to your site that is searchable
  • Provides a place for readers to comment which creates more content that is searchable
  • You become a Thought Leader in your Industry
  • Provides more Inbound links to your site
  • When someone leaves a comment or trackbacks back to you, it provides validation
  • Provides search engines with great content to help you get found
Blogging is the Mojo of Online Marketing.  If you aren't blogging, I challenge you to start.  If you are blogging, KUDOS to you!

I would love to hear your thoughts on how you think Blogging is or isn't beneficial to your business.

Have You Set Up Your Facebook Business Page Correctly?

Kim Kolb - Wednesday, May 19, 2010
How does a restaurant become your "Friend"?  Or you want to become a fan of a company and all they offer you is "Friendship".  How do you determine the sex of your company?  Is the company really as old as the owner or the person who set it up?  Do all your "Friends" really need to see the pictures from the last girls night out on your wall?  Do you see where I am going with this?  

A Personal Profile is just that.  It is you personally with all "your" personal info.  It is your family members and friends from grade school, it is your "farmville" stats and your "personality test" score. This is not what a business should be displaying to the people that are trying to become a Fan. These are applications that can only be on a Personal Profile.

A Business Fan Page is for the Business.  There is no personal information that can be viewed from your Business Page that anyone can see.  It is just that, for Business.  Your Business Page does not have a gender or an age.  It doesn't show the girls night out pictures that your friends posted to your personal wall, and it certainly isn't going to ask anyone to help them move the pink cow out of the road.

Here's the Rule from Facebook:  If anyone has a Business Page set up as a Personal Profile, Facebook can at anytime disable your account.  Yes, this means that without warning your contacts will disappear.  Protect your efforts of getting followers and create a Business Page

How can you get your "Business Page" from your "Personal Profile".
First, create a Business Page from your profile (Applications, Pages and create from there.  You can also scroll to the very bottom and click on help and then click on pages).
Once you have it all set up, send a Wall Post to all your "Friends" and tell them that you would like them to "Fan or Like" your business and provide a direct link for them.  I would do this a couple of times in the next few weeks and then you can either get rid of the "Personal Profile/Business Page or keep the Personal Profile Page and remove anyone who has moved over that is not actually your friend.

I really do encourage anyone who is not running their Facebook Business Page correctly to fix it before something happens to your content and your contacts.

I hope this helps you get on the right track.. Consider that you have gone to great lengths to evolve to where you are.. Don't you want to do it right?

If I missed any tips, please leave a comment.

Is Social Media A Fad, Like Home Computers Would Never last

Kim Kolb - Thursday, May 13, 2010
I hear people making this comment often "This Social Media Stuff isn't going to last". Really? Sounds like a similar comment that people made back in the 80's about Personal Computers not making it. So, knowing what we know about computers these days, that everyone has one or maybe two in everyone home, I would rethink that comment about Social Media and start the acceptance process.

Social Media is not a fad, in fact it grows every day.  Watch this video and leave a comment on what you think about Social Media.  As someone who is doing Inbound Marketing through Social Media daily, you should be rethinking your online marketing strategy. If you are not in tune with what is being said then you are out of the conversation, it is like being stranded on an island by YOURSELF!

Please leave a comment (hint: it provides an Inbound link to your site)

If you like what you read, please subscribe to our blog as we put out Tips, Tricks, and all around good ideas for you to use in your business.  Make sure you turn up the volume on this video.. The Music alone is inspiring.

You Are What You Post

Kim Kolb - Tuesday, April 06, 2010
Over the last 10 months I have watched a variety of people in what and how they post.  Let me do a disclaimer right now.  I am not a perfect blogger, nor do I want to be.  I am a "Balanced Poster", but like to be an "Original Poster".  I have my favorite ways to post and am not being critical of anyone. All I have to say is "You Are What You Post"!

Here are my views of the different kinds of posters out there.  This could be posting on a Blog, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
  • The Re-Poster -  This is the person that finds an article that someone just nails, and you think "I wished that were my idea".  You repost it as a sign of validation to the writer and to your friends that you have found an incredible article you want to share with them.  
  • The Re-Purposer - This is a person that finds a great article, but thinks a little different take or explanation will expand on the article or give it a different view point.  
  • The Original Poster - This is the person who takes time to think about what they want to write.  They write from their experience or about their industry.  
  • The Balanced Poster - This is the person that plays with all the cool kids above.  They have re-posted a great article, re-purposed information to write a great article and they have come up with their own original thoughts.
What kind of Poster are you?  Do you have any additional Posters you think I should add?

Social Media Monitoring Tools

Kim Kolb - Sunday, January 31, 2010

In my effort to help those new at Social Media or who are still trying to get their footing, I am posting just some tips on a couple of tools that I think Rock!

Ever wonder what to use to track ALL the Social Media channels out there?  When I first started with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Blogging, I really was overwhelmed by having to log into each of them as I needed to post something.  It was very time consuming to log in to each system, copy & paste, each post. Sometimes you had to shorten or lengthen the post because there are different character limits for all the channels.

When Facebook came out with the ability to link to LinkedIn and Twitter by putting in a hashtag, I was way excited!  I used that for a short while and then I found HootSuite.  Hootsuite allows you to track Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and your WordPress, in one location.  You can also add to the mix any clients you are also monitoring.  You could literally be tracking a 100+ Social Media channels.  There is even a little owl that will pop up if you have been inactive for awhile that says "Wake Up".

The next tool I like to use is Klout.  It is not a monitoring tool like HootSuite, but rather a tracking tool.  It gives you an idea of your Reach, Demand, Engagement, Velocity and Activity for Twitter.  I use this to guage how active I have been on Twitter.  You can tell when you have contributed because every 48 hours you can update your score.  Klout also shows what people you may be influenced by and who may be influenced by you.  Really cool when you see that others may be influenced by you.

Best part about these tools, they are FREE!

I am sure there are a ton of tools that people use.  It is all about feeling comfortable with them.  If you have an awesome tool that you would like to share, I would love to know about it.  I am always looking for ways to simplify things.

Blogging Really Affects Your Site Traffic

Kim Kolb - Friday, January 29, 2010
What I am about to share with you is a personal account of my blogging experience.  Since I am blogging about this, I have to think that there are others out there that feel the same way.  By blogging about this experience I hope to bring a little entertainment, but most of all, the importance blogging is to your search results and the traffic to your site.  I plan to blog about things I have learned over the last six months of my short Social Media life.

Let's get started.  I started with Social Media back in July 09.  I was so excited to attend the FREE IMU classes, offered by Hubspot, to help me learn all there is to know about Social Media, Inbound Marketing, Blogging, and SEO.  We had a variety of speakers, all Thought Leaders in their field.  Social Media had been around awhile but there were over 5000 students in that first IMU class, so I would say there were alot of people getting on board.

So, I started Tweeting, Blogging, posting to Facebook, and LinkedIn.  I quickly realized that I was 
overwhelmed.  How can these thought leaders be all over the place?  Don't they get tired of doing all this posting?  

One thing I did realize is that people were coming to the site, they were subscribing to my blog, following me on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, it was some happy times.  I felt good.

Then...I stopped blogging.  I still Tweeted and Facebooked religiously.  My stats started to drop. Visitors to my site are almost none.  It was at that point.. Yesterday, Jan 28th, that I decided that along with my morning Twitter, Facebook, cup of coffee reading, I would add Blogging back to my mix.

What is the point of this story... Blogging is very CRUCIAL to your website traffic.  Above all else, BLOG. This is what puts fresh content on your site.  This is what gets people engaged with you.

If you dropped the ball on blogging like I have, pick it up and get rolling again.

Tell me about your experiences with Blogging, I would love to hear about your ups and downs.

Next up...How did I make my life easier with Social Media

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Social Networking on the Rise

Kim Kolb - Saturday, November 14, 2009

Web 2.0 is the latest evolution of search engine technology. Today it’s no longer good enough to have a professional-looking webpage and a blog. Successful companies are posting viral videos on Youtube, creating Facebook Fan Pages, Myspace pages, getting followers on Twitter, Connecting with other colleagues on LinkedIn and applying cutting-edge technology to their core business principles. Now business owners big and small are looking to get these services to help them catch up with this ever-evolving phenomenon.

According to a 2009 Deloitte survey, 94% of business executives plan on ramping up their social networking participation over the next 12 months. Additionally, nearly 40% of businesses are hiring full-time professionals at an online marketing company to manage their social networking strategies.

Francois Gossieaux, a senior fellow with the Society of New Communications Research, says there are still “plenty of companies who do not realize the power of communities, and others who have not yet figured out the proper approach for leveraging communities as part of their business.” He adds, “Businesses are truly becoming social again, and companies should look to leverage the collective wisdom of their employees, customers and partners in order to innovate faster, reduce costs and bolster their bottom lines."



A Professional website design on a solid foundation is the first step towards your Online Success.  Your Online presence needs to engage your potential customers by Calls-to-Action and the Remarkable content you display.    

Whether you are one of the companies already on the Web 2.0 wave or just starting out, the rules of Marketing your company have changed.  If you are not capitalizing on the Social Media, Blogs, RSS tools that are available to you, you are missing out. 

Today the success of marketing your company does not rely on the size of your budget rather the time and willingness you have to put into your online marketing presence.  I think some companies would rather throw dollars at the marketing than to put time into it.  I think this is one of those times when we find out who the "Real Players" are.

Thoughts?

LinkedIn and Twitter are now Synching Up

Kim Kolb - Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The new feature of LinkedIn and Twitter Synching, will roll out overnight. It allows you to cross-post to both networks. From the LinkedIn side, there is a Twitter Settings panel that allows you to link your accounts and choose whether your Twitter account appears on your profile. There is also now a special box that you can check to tell LinkedIn whether you want to tweet out specific status updates

The integration on the Twitter side is in your settings. You can link your LinkedIn account to your Twitter and then choose whether you want to share all of your tweets on LinkedIn OR just specific ones by using one of two hashtags: #li or #in.

This is exactly like the Selective Twitter Status Facebook app, which updates your Facebook with the #fb hashtag. The difference this time is that Twitter officially supports the #li and #in hashtags for auto-updating LinkedIn.

This is a great advantage for both companies. While LinkedIn has more users, it gets less traffic. Maybe this will get younger folks to join LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a great platform for promoting yourself to other companies. Alot of times people use it as their resume.

Something that is cool about Facebook and LinkedIn Synching with Twitter is that you can go to one place and post to all three. This may be a benefit to those clients that are time constrained to do several postings.

What are your thoughts?

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