How to Assess Social Platforms

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How do you assess social platforms for your organizations? Every now and then, I get an email about the shiny new object in social media and questions on whether or not we or a client should engage in it. Below are eight questions I typically ask. Feel free to add your questions in the comments below.

How to Assess Social Technologies

  1. Which group(s) in Groundwell’s Social Technographics ladder does the platform cater to (i.e. Creators, Critics, Collectors, Joiners, and/or Spectators)?
  2. Why are people participating on this platform? What are the emotional motivations for participating on this platform?
  3. How does your target audience(s) currently engage in social media?
  4. Does your target audience’s participation in social media reflect the engagement activity on the social media platform you are assessing?
  5. Are members of the new social media platform providing valuable insight about your business?
  6. Can you
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    measure the social media platform’s impact on your business goals?

  7. Do you have resources in place to engage and support users on the social media platform?
  8. And lastly, shout out to Downtown Rob for this last question: “Is this shiny new object that you’re recently heard about going to be around in the next 6 months?”

Memecube: Get a Taste of the Super Optimized Conference Experience

This year I’ve been fortunate to attend a number of marketing and industry related conferences. And while the content tracks differ, the underlying struggle as an attendee has been fundamentally the same across the board: What do I do when there are two equally mind-blowing sessions going on at the same time? 

Normally, I ask myself two key questions. Which session will I walk away feeling 10x smarter? And, what’s the likelihood that I’ll be able to apply what was presented when I come back to the office?

If I’m still struggling, I’ll quickly glance around to see which session is drawing in the biggest crowd — that’s usually a sign that the presenter is a definite must-see. At that point, I know I’m taking a chance and leaving it to Twitter and putting faith in the hashtag gods that someone in the other session will be tweeting every highlight. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t.

Fortunately, when I attended Gamification Summit (GSummit) 2012 last month, I didn’t have to worry. The reason is because GSummit had partnered with Memecube, a robust Twitter client, to deliver a super optimized conference experience. Now, I’ve seen Tweets projected on a wall and have seen images get pulled into a feed but I have never seen anything like Memecube. And although Memecube went down a couple of times because of conference attendees and subscribers rushing to log on, I still thought the platform was impressive.

Memecube Features

  1. It auto-populates speaker Twitter @handles and the conference hashtag. This makes it easy to tweet the event’s most memorable ideas, quotes and memes.
  2. Enable attendees to tweet and retweet others from same platform.
  3. View the conference schedule  easily and check-in to let other attendees know where you are.
  4. It can tie in gaming aspects where attendees can earn badges when one of their tweets is retweeted.
  5. Since attendees had to tweet via the platform, I didn’t come across any hashtag spammers.
  6. And lastly, ALL of the updates tweeted during a session are organized in one place!
In fact, if you want to check out how GSummit and Memecube turned out, you can still visit While you’re there, check out my favorite session at the conference with CEO, Chamillionaire, “Direct to Fan Engagement” with CEO, Chamillionaire. I love what he and Big Door are doing at My only regret during his session was sitting in the back. I wish I was up close so I could be visible in the photo he took of the crowd and posted to Facebook.

Source:, June 2012

Taking Memecube to the Next Level

Overall, I think Memecube is cool and would recommend all event organizers to check it out. In the future what I’d like to see Memecube do is feature photos in tweets. I’ve seen it in other Twitter clients such as Minglestream and thought it was great having the ability to view photos of sessions taking place. I’d also love it if Memecube linked to the actual tweet so I can copy the embed code and paste a tweet in a future recap.

Argyle Social: It’s a Showstopper

It’s rare that I get the chance to review social media marketing software but because I had already written a POV for my co-workers, I decided it wouldn’t hurt to share my opinion here and get your feedback. It’s important to note that I currently don’t use Argyle Social and my opinions here are solely based off of the product demo I received earlier this month. If you’re a current Argyle Social customer, I’d love to hear your feedback on the platform and how it has impacted your social media marketing. With that said, let’s get started!

Argyle Social is a Game Changer

At first glance, Argyle Social is similar to other popular publishing platforms such as HootSuite and CoTweet. You can easily schedule posts on Facebook and Twitter, review engagement across platforms via a single dashboard including your competitors, and access reports all in one suite but there’s definitely more to it when you look under the hood. .

Tie Social Media Efforts to Conversions

Argyle Social

The real beauty behind Argyle Social is its ability to track conversions as a result of social media efforts. What that means is if you published a Facebook status and a user engaged with that update (i.e. Liked the comment, shared it on their wall, left a comment, etc.) then three days later visited your company website and downloaded a white paper – Argyle Social can track that conversion and tie it back to your social media efforts.

How is that possible?

Simple – Argyle Social automatically adds a cookie to users that engage with content published on the platform and leverages  pixels that can be added to any website property. There may be more to it but that’s pretty much the gist of the product demo I received.

How is this actionable?

That means you can sort your content into campaigns or “messaging” and see what type of content resonates most with your target audience. Analyze the engagement, assign values to conversions and report on ROI. In addition, if you respond to ad hoc tweets and include a link, you can track if people that saw that link took action and later visited your website.

Branded Custom Publisher

What’s also interesting about Argyle Social is that you can have a branded custom publisher. Instead of Facebook showing that your status update was posted 6 hours ago via HootSuite it can say, “posted 6 hours ago via YOURSITE.” That will then link to whichever site you want instead of the publisher’s site. Companies leveraging HootSuite to scale social media updates fail to realize that Facebook groups all HootSuite notifications in a newsfeed and collapses them. Facebook users then have to click on “Show more stories on HootSuite” to actually view an update. Keep in mind that the most recent update on HootSuite is displayed first. With a branded custom publisher, I would doubt you would run into that issue if the frequency of your updates are spread across evenly versus every hour on the hour.

Build Brand Awareness with a Custom URL Shortener

From a branding perspective, having a custom URL shortener that provides a link which is easily recognizable from  you or your company is valuable and helps distinguish your brand. Instead of going to to track how many links resulted in clicks, leverage this all in one platform.

Add Your Own Images

With posts you can also link to a specific image that will resonate more with your audience. This is helpful if the landing page you’ll be directing traffic to doesn’t have an image or worse, isn’t optimized with Facebook OpenGraph and as a result, ends up showing a default RSS icon.

Posting Schedule & Frequency

This feature lets you define the parameters for how frequent you want posts to be set live (i.e. post 14 times within this timeframe). Personally, I think Argyle Social replace the arbitrary times and have the posts go live when users are more likely to engage with content. Since the platform already reports on engagement with your target audience, it would make sense to tie in performance with this frequency feature.


The big take away I saw was that Argyle Social is most powerful in weaving social initiatives with targeted messaging campaigns and back up efforts with solid metrics that you and your company can define in a single user interface. This makes the workflow seamless and requires less time gathering reports from other platforms. Do keep in mind however that Argyle Social does not report on buzz mentions or have a word cloud. Other than that, if you were looking for a more robust publishing platform that can offer a whole lot more, I’d advise that you give Argyle Social a second and closer look.

Post to Multiple Twitter Accounts with CoTweet

Matt was a web application created by the Carsonified team that I discovered in 2008 and shared how anyone  use Matt to make managing multiple Twitter account more efficient. Since then, Matt has become a parked domain and the service no longer exists. Fortunately, there have been other social media dashboards that took managing Twitter on a whole new level such as CoTweet.

Today we will cover how CoTweet’s platform can help you manage multiple Twitter accounts and how you can get started with CoTweet today at no cost.

Managing Multiple Twitter Accounts with CoTweet Standard Edition

If you’re on a tight budget, CoTweet’s Standard Edition is something you should look into because it’s absolutely free. This edition is best suited for individuals and organizations that manage only a few Twitter accounts and is managed by a couple team members.

Below are a few noteworthy features that you can benefit from:

Multiple Account Users

Easily add up to five Twitter accounts through a single CoTweet login and post updates all in one interface. Feel free to invite colleagues to join your account to help manage your Twitter presence.

Tweet Scheduling

Prepare your updates ahead of time with this feature. Simply enter your update then choose the date and time you want the post to go live. The only caveat with this feature is that you don’t have the option to bulk upload status updates.

Multi-Account Posting

Have a message that can be posted to multiple accounts? No problem. You can select more than one Twitter account to publish your update.

Click Tracking

View how many people clicked on a link that you posted from the user interface. All urls are shortened with

Monitor Keywords and Trends

Use CoTweet as a listening platform to monitor specific keywords and trends. I like to use this feature when following a hashtag for a conference.

On Duty Notifications

With CoTweet, you can delegate responsibility to someone else on your team. One an individual is assigned to be On Duty, he or she will receive email notifications when updates are sent to any of your Twitter handles.


Sometimes you come across tweets that you don’t have the answer to but someone else on your team may be able to respond. When this happens, you can assign an update to a member on your team to follow up. According to CoTweet, “They’ll be notified via email and the updates will appear in their “Follow Up” queue.” Once a response has been delivered, you’ll receive an email containing their response along with the original update.

Conversation Threading

This feature makes it easy to see which updates have been responded and by whom on your team.

Archive Messages

If you like to keep a record of what updates you’ve received including ones that you’ve sent out, this feature will allow you to do just that.

Rich Profiles

Of all the features that come with CoTweet Standard, I’d have to say that this feature is the one that I use the most. When you click on any username in the user interface, CoTweet will display the conversation you’ve had with that particular person, highlight their most recent updates, and include their Twitter stats (i.e. number of follower/following). Last but not least, you can instantly follow or unfollow people from this convenient panel.

Get Started on CoTweet

Ready to make the jump to CoTweet? Sweet, follow these simple steps below and you’ll be a multi-tasking social pro.

Step 1: Go to

Step 2: Introduce Yourself. Fill in your First and Last Name and then the company that you’re associated with. Leave this field blank if you’re not using CoTweet on behalf of your company and using it for personal use.

Step 3: Create your CoTweet login by entering a valid email address and entering a secure password.

Step 4a: Review the Terms and Conditions. By signing up you agree to CoTweet’s Terms & Conditions.

Step 4b: Then click on the “Create Your Account” button.

Tutorial: How to Add an Event to Yelp

It’s been a while since I’ve created a video tutorial and wanted to jump back into it again. With that said, here’s a quick 4 minute tutorial on how to add an event to Yelp. Click on the ‘Expand’ icon on the

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Check out the Google +1 Button

Just heard about the new Google +1 Button and wanted to share the news on how this new feature can help you find what you need faster and how you can join in on the experiment.

At a glance, the Google +1 Button encourages word of mouth marketing as it allows people to recommend content directly to their friends and contacts through personalized annotations. Online recommendations remain a positive influence on search behavior. According to Erik Qualman, “90% of online consumers trust recommendations from people they know; 70% trust unknown users, 27% trust experts.” (Econsultancy, 2009) Personally, the first stat resonates with me and aligns with my online behavior but I put a lot more weight on trusted experts when it comes to a purchasing decision.

With that said, I’ll leave you with the Google +1 Button video and how you can take Google +1 for a spin.

Watch a Video on the Google +1 Button

Take Google +1 for a Spin

To join the Google +1 experiment, follow the steps below:

  1. Log into your Google Account (required)
  2. Go to Google Experimental Labs > Experimental Search
  3. Click the ‘Join this experiment’ button next to the header ‘+1 button’
  4. Plug in a search query on and click the new +1 button on the SERP that you recommend
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That’s it! You’re ready to go. Don’t forget, you can participate in only ONE Google experiment at a time.

For more details on the Google +1 Button, check out the official Google +1 Button landing page.

Udemy & User Motivation

I stumbled across the course, “User Motivation,” a lively RSA Animate which was adapted from Dan Pink’s talk at the RSA. While the video illustrates the hidden truths behind what truly motivates people, I was truly taken back by how absolutely clever and entertaining this video was. For instructors that have students that are auditory and visual learners, this is definitely a good example of how to keep your student engaged when teaching online.

Tips for Marketing on Foursquare – OMS 2011

Thanks to my current employer, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend the Online Marketing Summit (OMS) in San Diego which was held at the Downtown Westin Gaslamp Quarter. I was at the conference most of the time providing attendees with a demo of my company’s software solutions for SEM and SEO and while I wasn’t able to attend a lot of the sessions, I was able to attend a session on how marketers could leverage the location-based social media platform, Foursquare, to target and reward loyal consumers.

Mike Lewis, the speaker and  Vice President of Marketing at Awareness, Inc. kicked off his presentation with a comedy web series on YouTube produced by HubSpot, Inc. called, “Foursquare Cops,” which I had to share (see below). The rest of the presentation is up on SlideShare. If you attended the event, what was your key take away?

Foursquare Cops – HubSpot, Inc.

Top 10 Ways Marketers can Use Foursquare

Presented by Mike Lewis (@bostonmike) at OMS 2011

View more  presentations from Mike Lewis on SlideShare and visit his blog Social Episodesfor more of his insight on social media and its on today’s businesses.

If you’re already on Foursquare, feel free to add me – HeyStephanie. Check you later!

Have You Binged Today?

Microsoft’s new decision engine, Bing™, aims to help users make better and informed decisions by focusing on four key vertical areas: making a purchase decision, planning a trip, researching a health condition or finding a local business. (( The decision engine is expected to roll out over the next few days and fully deploy worldwide on Wednesday, June 3, 2009. As of today, you can access Bing in it’s ‘preview’ mode and take it for a spin – and that’s exactly what I did.

The Bing interface is clean and boasts new features such as categorized search and web groups which makes it easy to navigate. For example, in a search for mobile phones, Bing provided categories at the top left of the page

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(also known as the Explore Pane) for mobile brands, a buying guide, service providers etc. Once you click on a search category and hover over a listing, you’ll see a a short excerpt from that page. This quick preview can help you decide if that’s the right landing page that you’re looking for. Bing offers other features such as Related Searches, Search History, and Best Matches.

I’ll be trying Bing out for the rest of the week and see what other features will be rolled out by June 3, 2009. How about you? What are your thoughts on Microsoft’s new decision engine?

E-Bestsellers and More From Your Local Library

298503_2251If you’re like me, you love walking down the aisles of your local bookstore to see what new audiobooks are on the shelves. By the time you’re done walking up and down your favorite aisle, whether it be Business & Marketing, Romance, or Self-Improvement, you look down at your hands and realize you’ve grabbed five audiobooks — each roughly worth $25.00.

You end up purchasing the audiobook that fits within your budget and leave the others to be re-shelved. “Next time,” you tell yourself and the running list of audiobooks you’ve logged in your memory to purchase  grows longer.

What if I told you that you could borrow audio best-sellers and other goodies from your local library—for free?

All you need is a library card from your public library. You can browse and search hundreds of great titles and download them to your computer, transfer them to a portable device, or burn onto a CD for your listening pleasure anywhere, anytime.

Imagine my surprise when I logged onto the San Diego County Library site and discovered their large selection of downloadable audiobooks in both WMA and MP3 formats—I literally freaked out. I whipped out my library card and checked out all of the audiobooks I had always wanted.

The process was simple and may differ from your local library so be sure to see what requirements you need in order to take advantage of this opportunity.

Step 1: Download & Install the OverDrive Media Console™ software (FREE)

The OverDrive Media Console is available for both Windows® and Mac® users.

Step 2: Register Free Software

Before you can start the check out process, you’ll need to register the OverDrive Media Console software. Don’t worry, you’ll only need to do this once.

Step 3: Checkout, Download  & Enjoy.

Now you can search the library database for your favorite audio books and other downloadable content. When you decide on a title of interest, simply add it to your digital cart to checkout.

You will never accrue late fees with titles you download from this website. At the end of the loan period, titles will expire and be automatically ‘returned’ to the library. At this time, you can delete the expired file(s) from your machine. – San Diego Public Library

So what are you waiting for? Search for libraries using  OverDrive’s service here.

(Photo Credit: a glitch)