Monthly Archive for December, 2009

Ignite Portland, A Documentary Short

Most of you probably know that I am one of the organizers for Ignite Portland, an event happening about every 4 months where we select people to present their burning ideas in 5 minutes using 20 slides that auto advance every 15 seconds. It’s an interesting format, and it’s a fun event to attend.

At this last Ignite Portland, Liz Grover started work on a short documentary that covers the history, the format and the phenomenon that is Ignite Portland. I was honored to participate in an interview where I talked about our experiences with Ignite Portland, and most of the interview appears in the documentary.

I encourage you to watch the Ignite Portland documentary. Liz did a great job of capturing the spirit of the event in just 8 minutes of video.

I also know that Liz is available for hire to work on other video projects if you need some video content for your latest project.

Recent Links

Here are a few interesting things from this week that I wanted to share …

Deconstructing An Angry Crowd: What Can We Learn?

What’s the biggest mistake a community manager can make?

Hiring for Social Media Part 3: Community Moderator

Is Hiring a Ghostblogger a Bad Thing?

Pepsi Bypasses SuperBowl in order to Build Community

How Can Social Media Help Small Biz?

Users Still Sharing by E-Mail

You can find all of my links on Delicious.

Blogging Elsewhere

Here is this week’s summary of links to my posts appearing on other blogs:

Intel Software Network*

Legion of Tech*

The Crazy Neighbor*

*Disclaimers:

  • Intel Software Network: I provide consulting services to Intel, and these blog posts are one part of my consulting engagement
  • The Crazy Neighbor: This is a Fast Wonder LLC venture.
  • Legion of Tech: I am a co-founder and board member.

Recent Links

Here are a few interesting things from this week that I wanted to share …

Back to Basics: The Strategy Team & Goal Definition

Community Is A Management Approach, Not Just a Role

Online brand reputation or social media listening software – a review of 26 tools

Online community metrics: numbers you need to pay attention to

How To Increase Your Business By Relinquishing Control

Elements of a vibrant online community: triggers, catalysts, lubricants, flows, and containers

Write Better Blog Posts Today

How to Promote Your Work

Facebook Keeps Its Cool Among College Students

Social Media Users Want to Be Heard

You can find all of my links on Delicious.

Blogging Elsewhere

Here is this week’s summary of links to my posts appearing on other blogs:

GigaOM’s WebWorkerDaily*

Intel Software Network*

The Crazy Neighbor*

If you want a feed of all of my blog posts across multiple sites, you can also subscribe to my über feed.

*Disclaimers:

  • GigaOM’s WebWorkerDaily: I am a paid blogger for the GigaOM network.
  • Intel Software Network: I provide consulting services to Intel, and these blog posts are one part of my consulting engagement
  • The Crazy Neighbor: This is a Fast Wonder LLC venture.

Who is the Voice of Your Brand?

I’ve talked before about the importance of having someone you trust as the face of your company:

When you are talking about online communities or social media efforts for a company, you need to think very carefully about who you put in charge. In particular, this applies to community managers, bloggers, and the people running your social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) The people in these positions become the face of your company. You want someone who will do a great job of representing your company and who fits well within your corporate culture.

Tom Fishburne’s latest cartoon and blog post are a great reminder of the importance of having someone you trust representing your brand in public facing, social positions.

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Tips for Using WordPress as a Corporate Blogging Platform

There are some big advantages to using a single blogging platform for all of your corporate blogging activities. In this case, I’m going to talk about how to use a single WordPress installation as your corporate blog, but similar tips probably apply to other platforms. Keep in mind that these tips are for corporate blogs, not individual bloggers.

Advantages

  • Gives people a single place to find blogs from the various groups or people within your organization.
  • Take advantage of having all of this together on your domain to get better Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for your corporate website. Having blogs on sites like blogspot.com will probably have a negative impact on your SEO as people create links to content that is off your domain.
  • Centralized management of the blogs to make it easier for people to blog while maintaining branding that is consistent with your corporate branding guidelines.
  • You have one WordPress installation, but it can look like a single unified blog with multiple topic areas or it can look like multiple blogs depending on how you want to position it.

Tips for using WordPress

  • In most cases, you should be hosting it yourself using the WordPress.org download, and integrate it into the rest of your online presence.
  • Replace the built-in feeds with Feedburner feeds to get better analytics on your subscribers and don’t forget to integrate your analytics package to track traffic on your blog.
  • Use WordPress categories to separate the different topics into channels and allow people to subscribe to specific topics using the built-in category feeds to create Feedburner feeds.
  • Use full names as author’s display names and allow people to subscribe to specific people using the built-in author feeds to create Feedburner feeds.
  • Go easy on the plugins. As you add more plugins, the stability and performance will usually start to degrade, and you can end up with conflicts between plugins that generate strange behaviors. In general, if you can do what you need to do with a couple of lines of PHP, don’t use a plugin. For example, I always embed the Feedburner feeds and Google Analytics in the PHP header and footer files, instead of using plugins for those functions.
  • Use themes to make your blog look unique and to highlight high profile authors or important categories.

Webtrends Example

Webtrends is one of the best examples of using existing WordPress functionality to create a really great blog. All of the main functionality they are using is built into WordPress, but they have done some extensive design work on the theme to make it look unique.

http://blogs.webtrends.com/

  • Featured articles at the top of the page provide focus and highlight important blog posts.
  • Focused topics: Inside Webtrends, Best Practices, and Industry News. Behind the scenes, they are using categories to create channels or sub-blogs based on topics. Notice how you can get a feed for just a particular topic or for the entire blog.
  • Recent Posts: All of the most recent posts regardless of the category.

http://www.webtrends.com/blogs

This is just another view of the same blog as above, but it is focused on their executive bloggers using authors instead of categories to display posts (and feeds) for each of their executives. You might use something like this if you had a couple of high profile people blogging for your company.

  • The main blog is linked at the top.
  • The most recent post for each executive along with an RSS feed is displayed.

While they are using the default functionality in WordPress, they have some extensive work on the theme / design to make it look the way it does. However, the categories, users, and feeds are all built-in functionality existing in WordPress.

Summary

This blog post assumes that you’ve already selected WordPress, so I tried to focus on just a few tips, but there are many, many more tips for corporate blogging and using WordPress.

However, it is important to spend some time upfront thinking about your goals for the blog and the strategic topics that you want to be the focus of your blogging efforts. After you have your goals and strategy defined, then you should start thinking about picking a blogging platform and getting started.

Related Fast Wonder Blog posts

Blogging Elsewhere

Here is this week’s summary of links to my posts appearing on other blogs:

GigaOM’s WebWorkerDaily*

Intel Software Network*

The Crazy Neighbor*

If you want a feed of all of my blog posts across multiple sites, you can also subscribe to my über feed.

*Disclaimers:

  • GigaOM’s WebWorkerDaily: I am a paid blogger for the GigaOM network.
  • Intel Software Network: I provide consulting services to Intel, and these blog posts are one part of my consulting engagement
  • The Crazy Neighbor: This is a Fast Wonder LLC venture.

Recent Links

Here are a few interesting things from this week that I wanted to share …

The Dark Side of Digital Backchannels in Shared Physical Spaces

Social Media Snake Oil from Brito’s Perspective

How Events Can Use Social Media

Great Findings From Social Sciences Applied To Online Communities

Motorola Survey Reveals Shift in Media Consumption Habits Across Generations

Working in a Networked Way: You Need Serependity and Sand Boxes

How Do Online Communities Generate Money?

Measure, But Measure Wisely

Community Channels (tools)

Top 10 RSS & Syndication Technologies of 2009

You can find all of my links on Delicious.

The Crazy Neighbor Launches

Crazy NeighborFor the past couple of weeks, I have been working on the launch of a secret (or not so secret) project called The Crazy Neighbor. Those of you who also follow me on Twitter have been seeing links to some of the posts from The Crazy Neighbor, but I wanted to wait until I had a little more content before “officially” launching the website.

The Crazy Neighbor is a celebration of crazy neighbors everywhere with user contributed photos containing proof of the antics of your favorite crazy neighbors. You can share your crazy neighbor pictures by filling out the contribute form on the website.

You can keep up with The Crazy Neighbor in a variety of ways:
RSS feed
Subscribe by email
Follow us on Twitter
Become a Facebook fan

This project was inspired by my own crazy neighbor. Interstingly enough as I am writing this post, I can hear my crazy neighbor very loudly quacking at his duck and clucking at his chickens (I’m inside with all of the doors and windows shut). He also yells “whooo!” quite often. Over the past couple of months, he has been seen: chasing his girlfriend around the yard trying to whack her with a fish, singing the Star Wars theme song and talking to his chickens while mowing the yard in the dark and in the rain, and fighting with his girlfriend and yelling … THAT IS NOT MY DILDO!

I thought that if I had a crazy neighbor that many of you probably had a crazy neighbor, too, so feel free to contribute your crazy neighbor pictures!

I am always looking for ways to improve, so please let me know if you have any ideas to help me make The Crazy Neighbor better.