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.

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


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.

Hi, I'm with Kirby Vacuum, Don't shoot

Kim Kolb - Thursday, April 15, 2010

OH My Gosh! I didn't even realize companies still used Door to Door Soliciting, I mean Sales, oops I mean Marketing.  I think this out does the Billboard ads.  

I was working in my home office today and I got a knock on the door.  Hmm, I thought.. Not expecting anyone.  I opened the door, I am not kidding on this next part, the young kid, maybe early 20's says to me as I am opening the door, "Hi, I'm with Kirby Vacuum, Don't Shoot"!  Since I am not real quick with my responses... I took a second and said, I have had a Kirby before and I don't need another since I have all hardwood!  The Rep did not seem to take this as harsh as I probably made it sound. He just said, "Okay, thanks".  Off to the next house he went.

What is Kirby's goal in going door to door?

  • Personal interaction
  • Face to face
  • Set up Demonstration
  • Closing a deal

With Outbound Marketing, you are being interrupted when you didn't ask to be.  Somebody is interrupting what you do to tell you what they do.  Telemarketer's, TV ads, all are Outbound Marketing. 

How does Kirby track their Outbound Marketing?  Just like we track Yellow Page ads, TV ads, etc. There is no way to track them unless there is a physical action that takes place.  You actually have a demo scheduled, you clip the coupon and use it, you tell the person where you found them.

  • If last year's "Outbound Marketer" could have tracked what he did when he came to my house, he would have been able to tell this year's "Outbound Marketer" that I don't have carpet.  
  • What is the cost-benefit to having people pound the pavement?

I do have to say that the salesperson had a wonderful attitude.  

I would love to hear feedback on this and your thoughts about door to door sales.

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?

Small Businesses Using Blogging and Social Media WIN

Kim Kolb - Friday, March 05, 2010
Are you still dragging your heals on getting into the Social Media world?  Have you started a Blog yet?
There is a huge amount of data about there that says the Blogging is one of THE BEST, way to get leads.

According to the Small Business Success Index (SBSI), Social Media has doubled to 24% over the last year. There were 500 small business owners surveyed on their Social Media usage.  61% of the small businesses said they had used social media to attract new customers.
It was also noted that 45% of those small businesses reported that blogging and social media was a great contributor to lead generation.
According to SBSI, this is how small businesses are using Social Media:
  • 75% created a company page on Facebook or LinkedIn 
  • 69% post status updates on Facebook or LinkedIn
  • 26% use Twitter to talk about their industry expertise
  • 39% have a blog to talk about expertise
Blogging has become one of the most used tools for lead generation according to HubSpot, "State of Inbound Marketing Report."

Inbound Marketing using Social Media and Blogging is far less expensive than traditional marketing.  Don't delay getting on this train... It is fast and furious and you certainly don't want to be left at the station.

How is your company increasing it's Social Media presence?

Twitter : Quality vs Quantity

Kim Kolb - Thursday, February 04, 2010
What is your goal for your Twitter account?  Do you follow everyone that follows you?

When I first started on my Tweeting Adventure, the person I started following first was Ashton Kutcher.  It was a little frustrating because I only got half of a conversation, "Hey man, no, I stayed home last night".  It was really frustrating to follow a bunch of people that I couldn't actually carry on a conversation with.

Then I started on my Inbound Marketing adventure and learned the right people to start following.  Duh, people who did what I did.  So, I probably did something really mean by unfollowing a bunch of people, even Ashton.  I also blocked all the Bambi types.  But I had to get myself on track.  

The next hurdle I faced was that I was still getting way too many comments from people that I really didn't have anything in common with or that offered me any information I needed.  I really don't care to "Make Money with every Tweet" or "Get Thousands of followers".  Spam on Twitter is just as bad as Spam in my email.  

So, I cleaned house.  I unfollowed some more people.  Now, I have people that I follow that provide valuable information in my field of interest, "Inbound Marketing, Social Media, Blogging, and Analytics".  I also found a great tool to track all my Social Media Platforms called HootSuite.

Now I follow people that I value their opinions and who have Remarkable Content to offer to me and others.  So if you think having thousands of followers regardless of what they can offer is Cool, then sorry, this post will not apply to you.  If you are just starting in your Social Media venture, this post is definitely for you.  Be cautious and choosey.

Quality of follower is more valuable than Quantity.  

Here is how I go about letting someone follow me or me following them.  When someone follows me, I click on their link.  I look at the Bio... NO bio, I don't follow, they can follow me as long as it isn't Bambi the pole dancer.  Sorry Bambi, but I don't have anything to offer you.  Next, if they have a bio, I read that and then look at their posts.  If they talk too much about personal stuff, I don't follow but let them follow me.  If they have valuable posts, then I follow them.

How do you get people to follow you, and then you can follow them?  Attend a webinar.  Most of my followers and people I follow come from the webinars I have attended.  They are like minded people who share my interest of Inbound Marketing.  We offer each other valuable content and live happily every after.

What is really nice about following people in the same circles, is that you actually start building bonds.  You miss them when they haven't tweeted in awhile or blogged.  Isn't that what Social Media is all about, building relationships?  You know that when they post something, it is of value and you can't wait to read it and comment on it.

What are your thoughts on Twitter Followers?  Are you "I take everyone" or "I am choosey follower"

Why Doesn't Blogging Come Natural To Us

Kim Kolb - Monday, February 01, 2010
How many of you reading this blog post actually write your own blog?  How many of you only comment on other blogs?  How many of you are really Awesome and both write your own blog and comment on other blogs?

Why do I ask all these questions?  Because I think for most people, blogging is not a natural thing.  Yes, we can compose an email and write a few paragraphs to our colleagues, but to sit and write about something that we then share with the world is quite an overwhelming experience.

When I started Blogging, I was committed to 3 times a week. Why?  Because that is what the experts told me. The avid Bloggers.  The guys who make money blogging.  I can do this I thought.  I started off well.  I blogged twice in one week.  I missed that third one.  The next week I did two.  Then after that, I just did one a week.  This went on for awhile and then I just stopped.

When I reflect back on my short blogging experience I wondered why I didn't blog more?  I definitely read tons of blogs.  I got to thinking about how someone could come up with the content for a blog.  How do you figure out every day what to write?  Sometimes bloggers do a couple of blogs a day.  How are they so inspired.  I was overwhelmed and didn't feel that I had anything to contribute.  My blogs consisted of content from other blogs that I felt I could do a better job at writing.  I figured the experts were already writing the good stuff.  Seriously, how many "10 ways" of anything can you have of one subject?

After about a month of no blogging, I decided to check our google analytics... Man, that was a depressing image.  Our stats went from about 200 + visits a day to 0.  Yep, that's right, a big goose egg.  

So what do you do when you have hit the bottom?  The only thing you can do and that is pick yourself up, brush off the cobwebs and start again.

I can successfully report that I have blogged for three days (Friday, Sunday, and Monday).  Hey it's a start. This time I have made it a priority.

How do I find content and the time for my blog?  I have decided that my thoughts may not be as profound as others, but that someone out there feels or felt like I did or do.  I think what I have to say can help someone either by inspiring them or making them feel like they are not alone.  Now the time part, I get up every morning and do the same thing.  Feed my cats, grab a cup of coffee and head to my computer for Emails, Facebook, and sign onto HootSuite.  I have added blogging to my morning ritual.  So far so good!

Although blogging hasn't felt real natural to me, what does feel natural is my writing style.  Everyone has one.  My style of writing is as if I am talking to my best friend.  I write like I speak.  Why is this important? Authenticity is one of the most important factors when blogging.  If you aren't sincere, the reader will pick up on that and probably won't be back.

I like to be funny in my writing.  Sometimes, and I shouldn't say this, but I make myself laugh!  I have found a few authors of some great books who write like they speak.  It makes for an engaging read.  Believe me, I have to really be engaged. My attention span is shorter than one of those curly shoestring laces.

I hope this has helped someone.  I would really like to know the answer to the very first questions.  Think of it as a poll.

How many of you write your own blog?  
How many of you only comment on other blogs?  
How many of you are really Awesome and both write your own blog and comment on other blogs?

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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