- Sell a product
- Display an online brochure
- Generate leads
Once the decision, it will color a site's lay-out, design and content. And it will determine how we measure a site's success.
Ok, yeah, he's cute. I admit it; I was charmed by his dopey good looks in That '70s Show.
But after watching the 31-year old Ashton Kutcher on Twitter and the sway he has, I now believe that man is a marketing genius.
Yet another very successful college drop-out, Ashton Kutcher has managed to leverage his own cult of personality into a social media sensation. Right now, Ashton (@aplusk) and CNN (@cnnbrk) are in a race to reach one million Twitter followers.
Followers are basically Twitter subscribers who are tracking Kutcher's own Twitter entries. In the first place, both Ashton and his wife Demi Moore are both on Twitter. Ashton, going by user id @aplusk, and Demi, going by user id @mrskutcher, have made their own little reality show on Twitter.
Every day, Twitter followers watch them interact with each other, their family, friends and, if you are lucky, a Twitter follower. Ashton and Demi are, as @glambert once said, their own paparazzi. But it gets better: Every Twitter profile has the opportunity to link to your web site of choice.
Most people choose to link to their blog or company. Actors will often link to their filmography.
But Ashton, who I believe is at heart an entrepreneur, links to BlahGirls.com. What's Blah Girls? A portal to "an interactive, animated web video series and celebrity gossip blog." Blah Girls is owned by Blah KL-DG, LLC, which is co-owned by Katalyst Media and David & Goliath, Inc. Katalyst, founded by Kutcher and his production partner Jason Goldberg, create original content for digital media, tv and films.
The company has produced the FaceBook Video series "(Kat)al+yst HQ", tv shows "Punk'd", "Beauty and The Geek", "True Beauty" (a co-production with Tyra Banks), as well as the movies "The Butterfly Effect" and "Guess Who." David & Goliath, Inc. founded by artist-entrepreneur Todd Goldman, is a $90+ million teen apparel line.
Kutcher spotted his Twitter opportunity when he noticed that: 1) he was fast approaching on one million followers, and 2) he and CNN were neck and neck. In the fashion of his personna of slacker/football player, Kutcher looked us straight in the eye and promised that if he beat CNN to the race, he would "ding dong ditch" Ted Turner.
Last night I watched as Ashton gained 1,000 followers in 15 minutes, then 10,000 in an hour. So what does one million Twitter followers mean to Ashton and CNN? Two million sets of eyes. Both "entities"--because Ashton is but a brand--are in the media business.
Both Ashton and CNN want you to watch them. Because, as all of Hollywood knows, eyeballs equal dollars. So what can we as legal marketers learn from Krutcher's social media wizardry?
First, social media is about interaction: Twitter is much more interesting when watching two people interact online than a lone person shouting out into the vast TwitterSea.
Second, personality matters.
Third, we, as individuals, make the web interesting. And, as Ashton suggests, in the arena of social marketing, "we actually become the source of the news, and the broadcasters of the news and the consumers of the news."
NOTE: (from @glambert): At 10:42 I checked the stats, and was temporarily amazed that Kutcher had not only passed the 1 million mark, but was actually approaching the 2 million mark.
- Name Search: I want to find Twitter usernames that are "lawyer" related. (name:Esq. OR name:Lawyer OR name:Legal)
- Location Search: Put "location:" and the name of the location (location:Houston librarian)
- "But Not" Search: Put a minus sign "-" in front of words you want to exclude ("law firm" -lawyer)
- Proximity Search: We librarians love this type of searching that allows you to find words within a few words of each other. However, in the 140 character world, this may have limited value ("security law"~3)
- What is this e-mail's business goal?
- What activity do I want the reader to perform after they read my e-mail?
- How can I measure whether they performed this activity?
As my team knows that I am fond of saying, "all roads lead back to the web." Web traffic is the most measurable metric available. In my mind, every e-mail should push people to your web site. Whether you are establishing your brand, developing leads or selling a product, every online marketer's goal is to get e-mail readers to their web site.
Once on your site, depending upon the depth of your analytics tool, you can track their activity by looking at your web logs.
By the end of an e-mail campaign, we online marketers should be able to report, "we sent XXX number of e-mails. Of those, XX visited our web site."
That is the true measure of e-mail success.
Breaking News: All 800 attorneys and 200 Paralegals at an undisclosed BigLaw firm are to receive Kindle 2's. The Kindles will all come preloaded with the entire National Reporter Sets, US Code, CFR and Federal Register.
- Multiple Editors: If you're a Twitter Stud like Guy Kawasaki, you can add additional editors to your HootSuite Login, and still maintain privacy of your own Twitter password. So, you can have people help feed to your Twitter followers, but still prevent they rouge editor from changing your password and hijacking your account.
- Share a Business Twitter Account: With Multiple Editors, you can have a "business" Twitter account, and have your employees Tweet information as needed. So, if your law firm has a Twitter account, you can share the responsibility of Tweeting and answering Tweets among the staff. Perhaps having one person Tweeting your events and publications, while another answers any replies or Direct Messages you may receive. Come to think of it, this would work really well for a Politician that has a Twitter account and needs to make sure he or she is on top of everything.
- Manage Multiple Twitter Accounts: Got a personal and a business Twitter account? HootSuite allows you to manage all of them in one place. Switching back and forth, or posting to all of your Tweets via the HootSuite Dashboard. This is a great convenience if you have ever had to go back and forth from one account to the other. And, if you've ever accidentally posted a personal tweet on your business account by mistake, this could help save you that embarrassment in the future.
- Schedule Tweets: I'm constantly finding a lot of good resources out there, but I don't want to necessarily Tweet all of them within a 10 minute period of time. Or, I find them at 3:00 AM and I want to discuss them with my 10:00 AM Twitter friends (although, I still love all of my Aussie Twitter Mates.) This also works if you are scheduling an event, and would like to send out periodic Tweets reminding people that the event is coming up. There are lots of Twitter Elites out there that schedule their Tweets throughout the day. HootSuite makes it pretty easy to set it up and send it out later.
- Monitor Who Is Clicking on Your Tweet Links: NOTE: I'll give the good on this one here, but be warned, there are a lot of folks out there that do not like this part. If you ever wonder if anyone ever really goes to the links you Tweet about, then HootSuite has a way to do that for you. HootSuite uses "ow.ly" to shorten the URLs, but it also uses it as a monitor for click-thru's and feedback options. On the surface, this sounds like a great tool. It is nice being able to see that 83 people clicked on your link to the blog you mentioned. In addition, people can vote their positive or negative reaction to the link in the OW.LY frame that surrounds the web page you Tweeted about. So, in a way it is like a mini Google Analytics program for your Tweets. You can even add your Google Adsense code to your HootSuite account, and generate revenue from your Tweet Links.
- Save Keyword Searches: Got some key terms you like to search? Well, HootSuite allows you to save some of those keyword searches and retrieve them at the click of a button. This is pretty convenient to have included with all the other resources found on HootSuite.
- Easy To Navigate Dashboard The HootSuite Dashboard is set up with tabs for you "Home", "@Replies", "DM's", etc. Pretty easy to use, and similar looking to the Twitter.com homepage, so there's not a big learning curve involved.
- Just Who Am I Tweeting To Anyway?? None of us like to be fooled, or made to believe we are communicating with one person, when in reality, it is someone else. This goes for the fake Brittney Spears twit, as well as the big personalities on Twitter that use ghost writers to tweet for them. So, if you are one of those folks that has the money to pay people to Tweet for you, just make sure that people understand that is how you set things up.
- The Whole "OW.LY" Thing.... Alright, this is the big one. I barely got my first test Tweet out on HootSuite when someone called me out for "annoying" if not "illegal" framing of web content. Now, I confess that I didn't realize what OW.LY was doing until after I had sent out the Tweet, so I was pretty ignorant of the drawbacks of using OW.LY as my URL shrinker. At first glance, the frame is a little annoying, but also a little useful. So, I had a nice little discussion with Doug Cornelius about the benefits. Whereas I thought HootSuite's ability to gather statistics and feedback could be a benefit to the person Tweeting the link -- Doug thought it was something close to the incarnation of Satan himself (okay, I'm being a little over dramatic on Doug's response... but, not that far off!) After looking at the positives and the negatives, I decided that framing of other people's content really isn't a great idea. It is annoying for one, and it borders on the unethical for another. I would ask the folks at HootSuite to give the users of their product an option to use a non-framing version of OW.LY that would still gather the metrics of who did the click-thru, without annoying the hell out of them!! As for the putting Google Adsense code on OW.LY to generate revenue from your Tweets, I'd have to say that would not be something that I would do, or recommend. Some may argue that people would not have gone to these websites if it were not for your Tweets, but I'd have to say that there seems to be a certain sliminess about that type of revenue generating that I do not like.
- Good Lord!! Are You Always on Twitter??? I mentioned to a friend of mine one day that it seems that people we knew are spending all of their time on Twitter. He laughed and said, "No. They only spend half of the day on Twitter. The other half they are on LinkedIn trying to find more connections." Do I really need a scheduled tweet from you every 15 minutes? Does the scheduling of Tweets take away from the "social" part of the social network platform? Eh.. perhaps. I'd say as long as you don't overdue it, use it.
I spotted a James Carville article in the FT.com op/ed (Daddy, tell me, what exactly is a derivative?) this morning that reminded me of how difficult it is to write for the web.
Carville was writing about Obama's "supposed communication breakdown during the financial crisis." Carville says the failure is not in Obama's ability to communicate but in the complexity of what he is trying to explain.
I can definitely relate.
I will never forget what my grizzly, old editor told me when I was interning for a small newspaper in Orange County, "Honey, you gotta write dumber. Most people can't read above a 4th grade level."
Writing dumb may sound easy, but it is not, especially if you are writing about a complex topic.
Granted, in the legal field, I am generally writing to a more sophisticated audience. But I run into another challenge: time.
My readers do not want to pour over paragraphs of analysis. They want to be able to read my story in less than 30 seconds.
So I have to be able to tell my story in a paragraph. And, no, that does not mean a 10-line paragraph. If you look at my writing, most of my paragraphs are only 1-2 sentences long. And my sentences are very short.
Here's another lesson that I learned from another grizzly old guy: look at your sentence and eliminate every fifth word.
Yeah, it is hard to write small. And just like I pointed out in my SEO post: you have 3-4 seconds to get their attention on the web.
So you better engage them fast!
Teenage female werewolf struggles to find acceptance in a world that doesn't know about the supernatural. Moody, dark and emotional.We then both realized the beauty of Twitter. It teaches you to write better faster. As one of my favorite lines by AJ Liebling goes, "I can write better than anybody who can write faster, and I can write faster than anybody who can write better." Tweets refine your thinking, creativity, wit and writing. And, if done well, a twitter can be repurposed for elevator pitches, bylines, resumes and queries. Twitter: helping the cause of literacy one character at a time.