What is Your Very Best Defense Against Bigger Websites?

I have been working hard of late putting together a series of posts and material around strategy for you. I have written about this before.

Key Points You Will Receive When You Read This Complete Article:

  • Your experiences and skills demonstrated in text, video, and audio, are the only unique content.
  • Tricks and gimmicks are nothing without strategy.
  • Your values guide everything.
  • Technology is fleeting as an advantage.
  • Demonstrating what data means is far more compelling than handing over the data for your prospects translation to meaning.
  • Failure to demonstrate is selfish to your market and will be eventually punished by Google and the social-sphere.

Much of this is not new, but only more crucial than ever for your survival.  Especially for mid size businesses down, who cannot afford mistakes.

So I recently came upon a Facebook post by long time friend Barry Cunningham, a social media maven. And he wrote in a Realty Group about the Real Estate site  Zillow running un-targeted ads in Facebook. And that is everyone’s opportunity to own their market.

After much commentary amongst the members, I chimed in with this reply. His thread was a perfect opportunity to write this out for you. I edited it slightly for grammar and flow.

Barry ,amen on the not needing to know so many market statistics. We seek what we seek. And that stuff is easily found online. What we need is someone to tell us what all this crap means. I think you have brushed on this before. But there is no new content.

Unless you just cured cancer there is nothing new that you do. You are a commodity. And the more you try and talk about superior technology the faster it will commoditize.

As yesterdays technology is today’s homework assignment.

Google hates it . Yet we try to do the very least minimal dosage. But that is ok until it isn’t.

Back in the day, we hammered high PR links from old sites . Top ten in Google in 30 days or its free. I actually sold that. But you cannot get away with that manipulation anymore. the links are harder and they get sandboxed (well done Google, well done;-) And content on site or on social is no different.

Technology is not a USP

 The only truly unique content is you and your opinions.

There is a reason everyone here has lasted the test of time in our respective businesses. Yet, many are afraid, or have not considered what makes them last.

The reason is you are not Vanilla. You are Neapolitan and have answers for every nuance in your business. But yet you do not share it. You do not demonstrate it. That is sort of selfish.

And selfish is not rewarded in a commoditized marketplace.
Especially for the 1 or 2 (wo)man army business.

So when you slap me with some meaningless number seemingly dished out from Econ class.  My eyes glaze over.

However, when you say the x went up y points. (here is the kicker which makes you win) “and what that means to you Tim is blah blah blah”. You win. Because I can careless about a cute report. What I care about is me. Just like that’s all you care about is you, and what your clients/prospects or readers care about.

So that is number one. Number two is strategy.

Barry’s post is spot on with Zillow. But you know what? Zillow can careless about our cute little thread here. They just bought Trulia. They are kind of a big deal. And Google thinks so too. So they can screw up and a VC will pay them more to do it.

Hows your business financing going? Don’t answer that;-)

You cannot afford that screw up. And there is an opportunity as Barry points out. But there is a jillion tactics disguised as opportunities on the web. Which one to chose? which one to chose?

It comes down to your values and objectives. Not knowing how Barry’s opportunity fits is a bigger mistake than anything Zillow will ever do.  Because most opportunities like this are nothing but tactics and often fall into the shiny object category. More mental porn that distracts from our execution of our plan.

Strategy and values will guide you to know that once they click on the ad that there is a natural funnel for your visitors to flow through. The less value based, the more manufactured the funnel has to be, and pretty soon you again look like everyone else.

So not sure how to grab your inner wisdom?

Go watch the opposite of your political bent on MSNBC or Fox. If you hate Sean Hannity go watch his smug self explain how and what the news means. If you are more inclined to agree with Sean then venture over to Rachel and study how she twists the news.

Either way it is infotainment. It is at best editorial. It is not news. For the absolute best go to Comedy Central. Stewart and company hiding news between jokes while amazingly crafting what you are supposed to believe. And like in social media the points are made quickly as to not bore the audience. Quickly being replaced by sarcasm and laughter. Bill Maher does a similar game. They are curators. More importantly and sadly, they are thought leaders.

But these guys do what we can and should do. In fact IMHO its the last opportunity on the net.

Selling our authentic, transparent selves is the last great opportunity on the internet.
 And most of our competitors will fail miserably at that since they do not have a client oriented outcome that would benefit from transparency. Especially giants like Zillowia.

English: Zillow logo
English: Zillow logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Barry later asked if this was directed at him. And I corrected myself and said no it is directed at the real estate and online community in general. We all suffer from this commiditization process and our experience and skill set is our best defense.

Are You a Member of the Social Spam Club?

To Spam Blast or Socialize that is the Question?  We often chose scale over substance.  Whereas substance can allow us to connect with people.  Connecting with our potential clients is easier to do than ever.  Otherwise we risk insulting  them with shallow messages than connecting with them.

So if we want to scale way up, we can blast out our messages with a tool like Hootsuite. Which will take our post to multiple social media platforms. We are doing that for clients now. As Rich Shefren taught me ten years ago. “It is better to do something shitty than not at all.”

And blasting is OK if you have a decent message and engage socially.  Afterall, it is called social media. And most treat it like they do Google. Like it is somehow a con game to trick with the least possible effort and expense.

So lucky enough I just found  this unedited and raw podcast that tackles the above subjects and more. It is so good I am wondering how I lost it in the first place.

This Podcast tackles how to embrace social media, search engines, and reputation marketing in a strategic whole. Not a set of disparate parts. It is packed with multiple layers of learning for your social media marketing.

The main lesson to take home. Be the trusted source on your topical theme. Do this right and it will flow through all three aspects of internet traffic. Search, Social and Reputation.

Key takeaways:

  • Content is to be re-purposed across the web and curated.
  • What is your story? (if you do not tell a compelling story then you need to contact me for a consult).
  • Not everything gets into Google-indexed pages vs non indexed pages.

Broadcasting should not be a blatant sale but a demonstration of your worth to your audience. A good story helps this along.

Warning: this podcast some time specific tools that have changed at Google. They are relevant to the main points. But I want you to be aware of this. I felt the found content was so good that I did not want to have to try and recreate the audio.

Social Media 101

Social Media Marketing Secrets

The secret to social media marketing is that it is like network marketing or MLM. It is not who you know, but more importantly who knows who you know.