Happy Halloween

Hope everyone has a safe and sexy halloween!  Here are some fun pumpkins to get you in the mood!

Buying Twitter followers is like a bad boob job

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blue gloved hands covering breasts that are oulined in dotted lines for breast implantsYou created a Twitter account.  You learned to tweet. You started following people, and some started to follow you back.  But you see other tweeps who have thousands of followers, compared to your hundred.  The green-eyed monster rears its big green head and you want that many too.  So what do you do?  Believe it or not, many people go out and actually buy their followers.

Buying followers is not the answer.

There are many services out there that will let you buy followers.  I say to people, a little tongue-in-cheek, that for $100 I could have 10,000 followers tomorrow.  Ok, it would be a bit more than $100 and it might take a week, but I could still get them.  The problem with buying Twitter followers is that it is like a bad boob job. It looks good on the outside, but when you take your shirt off it looks awful. What I mean with my awful metaphor is this: looking like you have 10,000 fans overnight is great, on the surface. Instant popularity. The reality is that it is hollow (warning, here comes another bad metaphor); it is a one night stand with no orgasm.  Not only is it meaningless, there is no satisfaction.

  • Bought followers do not read your tweets.
  • They do not retweet you.
  • Bought followers do not know who you are.
  • They are not necessarily even people!
  • Bought followers will never be clients or customers.
  • And they will not click your links.

Bought followers may make your numbers look good but in all probability they will  not benefit your long-term goals. If you want real engagement, click-throughs, retweets, people who help grow your network, read your tweets and do business with you, you have to do it organically. It is slower, but the payoff is much bigger.

This said, I will admit here that not all the follower buying sites out there are useless, some of the better ones offer to connect you with targeted followers and users, which is not the same as buying randomly in bulk.  Ultimately Twitter is about engagement. Sure, you can purchase as many followers as you can afford, but if you are not participating in the discussion you will not receive any authentic benefits.

Be a Dumb Tweet

Dumb Twitter

Are you making your followers feel dumb?

This is one of the most difficult and frustrating parts of Twitter. Not everyone is as smart as you are. Not everyone is good at spelling or grammar. Not everyone has a large vocabulary or a deep understanding of obscure topics. You have to speak to your audience or you will risk losing your audience.

If you are trying to appeal to a wide range of people, the last thing you want to do is make them feel stupid or inferior. You want them to feel like they can talk to you and that they get you. You want to be relatable. To be relatable you have to be accessible. This means not speaking over peoples heads or making lots of unknown references. Keep the inside jokes between you and your friends, because the rest of the twitterverse just feels left out of the loop. And if they are left out of your loop then you will certainly be left out of there’s.

I bring this up because it is something I frequently see and frequently have to remind myself of as well. When you are tweeting you want to make sure that you are speaking in the voice of your brand. But you also need to speak in the voice that your audience wants to hear. So if your audience likes snobby intellectuals then feel free to talk about the disenfranchisement of ethnic minorities post-antibellum america or the hegemony of goth culture. But if you don’t want to sound like a uptight academic then you might want to keep the big words on the smallish scale and remember that not all your followers understand complex vocabulary or references.

Most of your followers will not do you the favor and tell you when you are talking over their head. They will just stop paying attention. So you don’t need to be a dumb tweet but make sure you keep your tweets accessible.


Is Google F&%king SEO?

Google Privacy Affects SEO

Google maybe watching you but they aren't sharing the information!

Google has just announced a big change to their site. Though from the user point of view it is minor. From the SEO point of view, it is a game changer.

Most of SEO strategy is based on keyword searches. How did someone get to your site? What search terms did they use to find you? The answers to these simple questions give a plethora of information to websites. They give you the specifics on how people find your site out of the millions that are out there. This information can then be programed into your site so that way you come up closer to the top of the search, to hopefully capture more of the traffic using those search terms. Google is now making that information private.

Google announced on Oct 18th that if you are signed into to Google when you conduct a search that your search will be encrypted. Any of the information that would normally be shared with websites will now be kept private, such as:

  • Referrer data- this is the information about what links the users clicked to get to your site. This is how you see who visited your site and where they came from.
  • Keywords- exact keywords and search terms will not be reported.

This will have a big impact on SEO for websites. Information that was freely reported and integral for comprehensive SEO will now be withheld. Google says you can still use their webmasters tool box to find popular and general search terms, but that will hardly help you create a accurate SEO strategy. Of course if you are paying Google for an ad or a sponsored link, you will still get referrer and keyword data, though only on your paid links.

The good thing about this is that currently only 10% of users are signed in. So 90% of the searches will still be reporting data.


Shameless Twitter: Community Standards

As more and more people use Twitter for promotions the community begins to set standards for behavior. This comes about through a commonality of experience. Once of the concepts of social networks is that they are inherently self monitoring. People want to be in communities where they belong, where they are accepted. That community sets its own standard of conduct based off of community values and behavioral experience. Inside of Twitters micro-verses you will find very specific rules of engagement that you will become familiar with as you involve yourself with the community.  However, Twitter as a macro-community has some of its own rules of engagement.

Some things we hate:

  • Calling someone out on unfollowing you, not cool. Not to mention that they will not likely want to follow you after you announced to the world that you unfollowed them.
  • Forcing people to “validate” themselves by using a captcha before you will let them follow you.
  • Auto DMs. Seriously why are you still doing this? We know they are automated and we are definitely not going to click your link.
  • Eggs – not the nice farm eggs in your fridge, but the arm of eggs that are following you. If you are a real person on Twitter then have a real profile pic.
  • “Please RT” – stop begging for retweets. If your content is good people will retweet it.
  • Asking for more followers. No one cares that you are almost at 8000 followers. Stop asking for people to pander your Twitter account to their friends. That is what #FF is for.
  • Its Wednesday, why are you doing a #FF? It means “Follow Friday” ….so do it on Friday!
  • Uncredited tweets. If you are posting something that someone else wrote, don’t play it off as yours. Give the person a h/t (hat tip) or some kind of credit.
  • Altering trending hashtags to make them sound cool. Some people do this for #FollowFriday, or #FF. You will see alternatives like #FriendlyFriday or #FavFriday. Don’t do this. #FF is a trend for a reason, when you alter a trending hashtag, you are no longer searchable in the trend, and therefore are not participating in it.
  • Pretending to be the Twitter account of someone else. You will be called out on this. No one likes impersonators, unless they are actual comedians!

These are just a few, there are more. Tell me what are some that you know?

Why Google+ is Bad for Porn

So how is Google+ different than Facebook?  Well, its not really.  Google+ (or Google Plus) is just as stringent on porn as Facebook. They forbid the content. They do not allow links to adult sites or explicit photos. Will they be as bad as Facebook when it comes to deleting accounts? Well time will tell.

Essentially Google+ is the new kid on the block of social networks. They are trying to compete with Facebook and not doing a terribly great job, despite endorsements from some pretty big people. Most of the activity is still happening on Facebook. Why? Because that is where everyone is! and by everyone I mean the 800+ million people around the world.  In many ways people are tied of learning new social networks. How many profiles have we created? Friendster, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumbler…and there are more. Unless it has something that is completely new and unthought of, and circles hardly counts, then it is not likely to be terribly sticky.

But beyond that Google+ is not great for businesses, much less porn. Currently they do not have a business profile option. There is no business page. So the only way you can be on there is as an individual. Then on top of that they won’t let you use a stage name. So forget privacy. Forget anonymity.

Though they are reporting that Google+ Pages for business is being released. However they will not be terribly different than Facebook Pages. Meaning, you will not be able to post adult content, links or anything. So is it a duplicate to Facebook? Not quite, but not far off.

Twitter Gallery Has No Boobies

When Twitter released their photo gallery it was a feast of boobies! All the photos from third party apps like twitgoo and yfrog were streaming in with naked bodies galore. Of course we wondered how long this was going to last. Posting naked photos is against the Twitter terms of service. But since Twitter was simply aggregating the pictures, we asked if they would put pressure on the apps to crack down on nudity.

On the down-low, I think they did. I ran a test photo on twitgoo of a blowjob and it was deleted in less than 30 seconds.

Officially I have not seen anything that says that, but there has been a change in the Twitter gallery. It is not longer a feast of boobies. It is more like a feast of clothed people in sexy poses. The only two photo apps that I have really seen being aggregated are yfrog and twitgoo. Both of these apps are notorious for deleting adult photos very quickly.  Moby, an app that was previously aggregating in the gallery, is not anymore. When running test photos for them, they remained active.

So we had a few glorious weeks of hundreds of boobie pictures to feast upon in the gallery, but it was just a matter of time before they figured out a way to make the gallery compliant with their terms of service. I guess we will have to go back to consuming boobies one tweeted link at a time.

New Branding for Fan Pages?

Facebook has been rolling out the “timeline” update on the newsfeed and on profiles. Will fan pages be the next update? It is the logical progression. Since the fan page update at the beginning of 2011, Facebook has been updating the layout of the fan page in conjunction with the profiles. The main goal being consistency in the user experience.

The latest update for the profiles was not only a dramatic visual change but also a UI (user interface) change. It is changing how users are using Facebook. In fact, the new timeline profile is deepening the emotional connection between Facebook and its user. If Facebook updates fan pages as well, it has the potential to have a similar emotional effect.

The cover image will be a great opportunity for branding, with the profile image being the “face” of your engagement. The more graphic display will really encourage fan pages to post more dynamically using significantly more photos. Beyond using more photos, it will encourage businesses to use a more cohesive and truly graphic based brand strategy. The page itself will be like an interactive page from a magazine. It has the potentially to be incredible.

No profiles have gone public yet. Below is a mock up by the New York Agency Skinny of a potential fan page. The branding opportunity is incredible! Of course this means that people will need to strategically implement their fan page design, which means that marketing firms need to embrace social media design. The game is changing…and getting more aesthetically pleasing!

In adult this could be a good thing or a bad thing. It might make your fan page look more porno than the old fan layout. Will this cause more flags on your page? Will adult be more likely to be deleted? Possibly. However it gives a huge opportunity for improved branding. Your page will be an amazing representation of your brand and that will do a lot for growing your network and pushing people to your site.

Steve Jobs Dies at 56

The Apple computer legend Steve Jobs died on Wednesday at age 56. He had a rare form of pancreatic cancer. In August he stepped down from Apple to attend to his illness. Sadly he lost his battle.

Steve changed the face of personal computing. His loss will be deeply felt.