group-blog-1

Blog

Inbound Marketing & Sales Development Inspiration

David McKillen

Recent Posts

Where did my IM networks go on IMO.im?

Posted March 3, 2014
2 minute read
If you are like me and have a list of friends, family and co-workers using multiple different instant messenger applications (Google Hangouts/Talk, Facebook Chat, Skype chat etc.) the recent move by IMO.im to get rid of all external IM networks will mean you have to find a new solution. IMO at one time was the leader in IM aggregators but, alas, that will be no more within a few days from now. My rather tedious task now is to find a replacement aggregator that will do the trick. Meebo.com was my goto at one time, however it got gobbled up by Google and also is no more. Where to start? To be frank I can't say I've found an answer yet but I thought I'd track my progress for anyone in the same boat - perhaps my efforts will help others too. I've tried most of them Online, Desktop and iPhone wise and can't say I've found the perfect solution yet. The perfect solution for me would be to have an all encompassing web-based version that works for all the main networks across most all devices - perhaps a bit of a pipe dream I know. What I have found might just work for me albeit a bit of a hodge podge combination of multiple options. Here is the solution I am currently trying, keeping in mind the 3 chat networks I need the most are GTalk, Skype and FB Chat: 1) Desktop (Windows 7): the downloadable version of Trillian (for an extra few bucks you can get things like saved history, which seems fair considering it would be nice if at least one of these aggregators was able to survive). 2) iPhone (you can likely replicate this on Android but I'm not 100% sure): For Skype I use the paid version of IM+, for Google Talk I use the Trillian App (the Trillian app doesn't seem to have Skype for some reason) and then for Facebook I just use their "Messenger" app. I use the few different options listed simply because interface and usability are very important to me. Although there are several different options out there, I just never felt completely comfortable with the others. We will see how things go, I'll post an update here in a week or so if I discover anything better, or if I find this new setup I describe works. By the way, 3 cheers for IMO for the great service they did provide while it lasted, I wish them the best of luck with their new endeavors. Have you had any recent successes in this realm you would like to share? [UPDATE] 3/19/14 I have upgraded Trillian to the Pro version for $20 a year. It works well for me overall. I had to move to the Beejive iPhone App for Google Talk which also works well for my needs.  
Read More

Topics Software, Blogging, Social Technologies

How to remove the Reviews section from your Facebook Page

Posted October 7, 2013
2 minute read
2015 Update: If you're looking for ways to remove negative reviews from your Facebook page, prepare to be disappointed. Back when we originally published this article in 2013, you could easily remove Facebook reviews from your Facebook page using the steps outlined below. Unfortunately, this no longer works.
Read More

Topics Social Media

Can I have a Facebook Page instead of a website? ... Part 2

Posted October 8, 2012
3 minute read
The pro-using-a-Facebook-Page-instead argument: The nice thing about Facebook is that the "social" part is integrated already into it's system. Afterall the very reason we post content online is to get others to consume it. We have direct access to about 1 billion people right off the bat with the click of a post button our information is fed into the system. Similarly the larger players in the business world show us that they can harness their own sub sections of this billion. Coca Cola – 50 million FB fans Starbucks – 30 million FB fans Nike – 10 million FB fans Even Dora the Explorer has 1 million FB fans The fact is this enables companies to harness the power of an existing network and without much effort. Facebook is a website that is entirely FREE of hosting and server costs. With just 25 likes you can get a unique URL’s for individual landing pages. Although you will need a third party eCom setup you can upload your own product catalog with detailed descriptions and get feedback and interaction from fans. You can throw an event or show presentations. Run a contest or a survey. Host a blog of sorts. If you want you can buy targeted ads. FB is integrated with so many other services and technologies - I can manage my page for free from my phone. There is pre-existing app database to access. Finally there is some gratification from seeing my likes increase and watching others' interaction on my Page. However the fact remains that the best practice and ultimately what is most advisable is to integrate & optimize multiple online properties to gain a net affect. If you have the budget and are interested in utilizing both, having the website as the hub from which other spokes like Facebook radiate, is the best approach. Start using Facebook to drive traffic to your website. Drive traffic to the company blog(s) on the website by offering an excerpt of the first paragraph with a link to the article in Facebook update. Provide links to your other online properties on Facebook such as Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest and more. Capture emails on Facebook when fans come as well as on your website. Create a Facebook competition that requires finding information on your website. Tell your fans about a special offer for which they can find information on your website. Integrate e-mail marketing with social media by linking the Facebook Page on your newsletters. Use a Facebook eCom store that takes your users to your own eCommerce store. Don’t get caught up in the hype though and feel obliged to use Facebook or any other social tool for that matter. Social media is most definitely here to stay and is increasing in purpose and use but it is still simply another tool in your marketing arsenal. * * * And so we circle back around to the big question - can I just have a Facebook Page instead of a website? The answer is possibly both yes and no depending on your situation. To cut a long story short the likelihood is that Facebook Pages, more than likely are suitable for lower end, small businesses. Restaurants or coffee shops might decide they only want to display their address, phone number and menu. One-man realtors might feel their marketing budget is better focused on entry level PPC or optimizing their local Google offerings. If you have just written a book and want to get it out there to your public, perhaps a Facebook page is the way to do that. For companies with less to "say" or a smaller budget, the Facebook page might be a good option - perhaps leaving room for them to invest in other marketing methodologies. Sports stores, banking institutions, credit unions, eCommerce entities, law firms, companies with a need to more actively market themselves might feel somewhat limited by what a Facebook Page has to offer. As such creating their own freshly branded, content management system (CMS) enabled website to act as their primary hub might be more appropriate. Facebook certainly has opportunities. Adding a CMS, the ability to add and edit pages, introduce better blogging capabilities, easier widget creation, manipulation of layout and perhaps cloud storage not to mention better integration of SEO services and other marketing strategies all would give Facebook a big push in the right direction. It seems very possible that we will see companies like Facebook evolving and growing in this direction in the future to provide better offerings in this regard. Certainly there will be a greater synergy between mobile, social and marketing strategies that will pull the need for stand-alone websites and the Facebook Page closer together. It is more likely that this rift between the two or rather the question as to which we should choose will essentially disappear as they merge and become one.
Read More

Topics Search engines, SEO

Can I have a Facebook Page instead of a website? ... Part I

Posted October 5, 2012
4 minute read
It's an age old debate at this point and folks have differing opinions depending on their situation. Web developers might be inclined to immediately defend their continued employment backing the need for websites; architects of the growing social media community might try to convince you otherwise. However at the end of the day, what's the deal? Has the time come to embrace services such as Facebook and do away with our own self managed online presences?
Read More

My website shows HTTP Error 503 Service unavailable -> The real solution.

Posted August 16, 2012
3 minute read
So at this point you have just about pulled all your hair out and are kind of getting a little nervous that the client is going to have problems with their site not being able to handle heavy server loads right? That 503 error keeps coming back though every once in a while and you are at your wits end. Maybe it just happens when you send out a mailer or perhaps you got mentioned on Digg for something pretty cool and your site hits went through the roof?
Read More

Can I sell my stuff on Facebook?

Posted July 21, 2012
1 minute read
Have an eCommerce site and are active on Facebook too? Why not combine the two?
Read More

Topics Social Media

Don't read Wikipedia ... Listen and Watch!

Posted July 17, 2012
1 minute read
The beauty of the Internet is that not only does it provide a seemingly infinite fountain of knowledge, but it also provides and ever increasing number of way of digesting this information. Wikipedia is an extraordinarily useful tool for finding information on just about anything you can think of. It has fast become a respected source of information for Academics too. Although perhaps not peer reviewed, Wikipedia is more and more becoming an accepted, legitimate research source.
Read More

Topics Search engines, Blogging

What should my minimum browser resolution be when building websites in 2012?

Posted December 29, 2011
2 minute read
At WebStrategies we tend to design websites with a 1024px resolution with an infinite background. Why? - because we want to try and ensure the lowest common denominator of users are able to view the site at the smallest resolution which happens to be 1024px for our sites. I thought it might be time to review these stats with the new year only a few days away to better understand what my minimum browser resolution should be when building our websites in 2012. I decided to examine our Google Analytics account and discovered something interesting - its seems we might not be out of the 1024px woods just yet.
Read More

Topics Google Analytics, Website Development, Web Analytics

Do more than just blog ... cast!

Posted November 30, 2011
1 minute read
Over the years blogging has become more than just a way of posting your favorite dog pics or family updates, it has evolved into something much more powerful. As a relatively novice blog writer (i.e. someone who thinks blogging can be fun and extremely useful/powerful but simply never has the time to become a true blog writer) I thought, wouldn't it be cool to be able to use my blogs to do more than just update a handful of friends who follow the my blog feed. Sure enough, turns out hardcore bloggers, the guys and gals that really know how to write do something called casting.
Read More

Topics Blogging

What’s the difference between a mobile website and a mobile app?

Posted August 24, 2011
1 minute read
What IS a Mobile website A mobile website is a website specifically designed for mobile phones. The width and general graphical dimensions are optimized so that they fit perfectly on a small screens. A mobile website has 3 important features: It is brief. It is concise and it is fast.
Read More

Topics Mobile