Don’t Fall for Facebook LIKE Scams

Look what I found in a Non-Profit’s Facebook messages! (see image)

BAD NEWS! This is clearly a scam.Warning Signals of Facebook Scam

3 BIG FLAGS!

  1. BAD GRAMMAR is always a big hint! Leaving out articles like “a” are common for foreigners trying to target Americans. Don’t overlook that as a typo.
  2. “NO ADVANCE PAYMENT REQUIRED” Really? Not only are the fees ridiculously low (lower than Facebook fees), but isn’t it just too STRANGE they DON’T NEED your money up front?
  3. NOTICE they didn’t ask for your email address, they want your EMAIL ID with Facebook. That’s why they don’t need your money up front.

If you give them YOUR EMAIL ID, they could have access to your Facebook account. If you are using ads for your small business or non-profit, you have provided Facebook with a payment method. If you provide access to your Facebook account, you are risking your credit card information to scammers!!!

Bottom line, if it looks too good, too easy, it’s not usually legit.

BE CAREFUL.

(Note: I am on the board of this local non-profit and manage their Facebook Page)

SMB Owners: Don’t Get Bogged Down in Your Bookkeeping

You Can't Afford NOTto Delegate

Franchisees and small business owners of all kinds:

Business suffering because you’re bogged down with administrative mess? You say you didn’t sign up for bookkeeping when you dreamed of your new business?

Not focusing on what you love is a BIG mistake.  And guess what? There are people out there who LOVE bookkeeping. Yes, it’s true! And, thankfully, they are ready for hire.

EVEN IF YOU KNOW HOW

You choose a business because you are following your bliss, your passion, your venue to champion your skills. My guess is you never gave a damn about bookkeeping, ordering, payroll, maintenance, or many of the duties that are so necessary to run a successful business. Just because you know how doesn’t always mean you should.

I bet you’re still mowing your own lawn, too.

Time for a wake-up call

So why aren’t you hiring people to do those tasks? Or at the very least, delegating it to the person on your staff who does enjoy and excel at that kind of work?
The excuse I hear over and over is that you can’t afford to hire another person to handle those chores. You can’t afford NOT to!

Start with part-time help

There are many people who are taking on clients like you on a part-time basis:

  • Virtual Assistants
  • College Interns
  • Stay-at-home Moms/Dads who are dying to talk to adults and keep their fingers in the work  world part-time
  • consultants who want to make their own hours, and more.

Yes, you will have to monitor their work, but do hire someone to do what you hate or is eating up quality time in your business. Get back to your business at hand. You will be less stressed without those duties hanging over your head and they will do a better job with the full focus you need. That is what THEY love to do.

SMBs: Stop Ignoring Google Plus!

Google Plus Logo CollageGoogle+ is DEFINITELY gaining ground.

If you haven’t taken the time to explore the beauty, versatility, and content quality of Google+, you simply don’t know what you are missing and you are paying too much attention to old information.

IMHO, G+ is the perfect blend of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram rolled into one.

That’s not to say they will fade away, but much of what is missing in those singular platforms is all rolled into one at G+. Add the bonus of increased rankings with usage and you have a win-win.
Start playing with it… there are plenty of YouTube Videos that can get you acquainted. (Hello- YouTube is a Google product…!)

Google Plus Just as Popular as Twitter in U.S., Study Says  And has more visitors than Instagram, Pinterest 

Update: You are invited to our brand new Google+ Community for small business owners and managers: http://bit.ly/SMBSmartMarketingTalk

IMHO :) 6 Characteristics of Small Business Owners

Happiness is being a small business owner.

People ask why I only work with Small Businesses in the U.S.

Because American Small Business owners are Passionate and crazy about their business! Not that there is anything wrong with working for a corporation, but there are just too many levels between the floor and the rooftop for most small business owners – including me.

Small business is family. Small business is passion. Small business is the reward in the thrill of succeeding with recognition – or despite the lack of!

(IMHO) Characteristics of Small Business Owners – including me:

  • OCD – Obsessed with their business
  • ADD – Simultaneously thinking of 12 things while still noticing something else – and calling it multi-tasking
  • Narcoleptic – capable of falling asleep at a desk at any time (or even standing up) because of staying up nights working on new ideas
  • Insatiable – can’t get enough of business-related reading
  • Clueless – unable to notice they haven’t eaten all day or taken a break or missed a family birthday
  • Annoyingly Happy – Friends and relatives don’t understand how they work so many hours and be thrilled to do it

There is nothing more contagious than the energy of a small business owner!

Social Media – a Record of Visceral Reactions

Boston tweets and posts Sprout Social 2013-04-16

Just how valuable is Social Media in tragic times?

In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, April 15th, 2013 – Patriot’s Day, Social Media reminded us of how important it is to maintain our human connection – especially in times of tragedy.

If I hadn’t had my Facebook account open on my laptop while working in other windows, I wouldn’t have noticed a friend’s notification about the 2 bomb explosions. She is a runner and a police officer, and was keen on the event and therefore a reliable source. Yes, I went to my television to see the live coverage, but I had my laptop with me as I wanted to continue learning more from any social media updates while I was still working. I knew that at least some of my social media friends, followers and connections might have loved ones or someone they knew participating or attending the marathon, or, actually living in Boston. So I also opened my Sprout Social management tool so that I could follow Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook messaging and keyword search feeds all on one page.

It’s about getting closer to the reality

Reading tweets, posts, and updates is not just informative, but it is a keen indicator of the visceral reactions of anyone who has any connection to the incident and the reactions of anyone worldwide who is “listening” on these platforms. Live TV gave the visuals and the reporters updates, but my social media accounts gave me the heart and soul of America – and the world – on the most human level possible.

  • Did you track your social media accounts during this horrific incident?
  • What value was it to you vs. traditional reporting avenues?
  • Did social media offer comfort because of the direct connection to the event?

40 Years since the 1st Cell Phone Call – a Retrospective

Picturephone
Picturephones never made it…

Mashable posted this morning about today making 40 years since the first cell phone call. I had to stop and calculate how young I was at the time…

Ok – so I was in high school

…and we were happy enough having a phone extension in the bedroom (for you Gen x & Yers, an extension was the teen’s only way to get out of the hall to have a private conversation!) Back then, our parents were panicking that they couldn’t hear all of our conversations anymore. We teens were always worried someone would pick up the other line and listen. Nothing compared to today’s worries over teens and the internet!

So who cared?

I don’t recall knowing anything about this new cellular technology. But then, that is how it was with most inventions in that era. New inventions splashed on the evening news and then disappeared. You learned it was best to not to get too excited because many of these earth changing discoveries tended never to get to the masses due to the huge expense of production.

A great example was Jetson’s style visual communication that featured in the Ma Bell “Future” section of the State Fair (above image) year after year. It was a big flop. Of course, now, the internet has taken over that function with Skype and other internet options. Oddly, visual communication finally surfaced without the use of telephones.

Marketing Potential?

So in light of the simplistic perception we all had about the power of visual communication back then, the only advantage we saw to Picturephones was the ability to see who was on the other end of the line. And we weren’t always sure that we wanted to BE seen! The first concern was whether there was an OFF button!

Never was there any discussion as to the marketing possibilities that would come with portable visual capabilities. After all, this was the era of newspapers, magazines, billboards and only 3 TV networks.

Similar to the beginnings of Social Media, it was just about communication and that’s all. Now, the primary discussion is all in Market-speak.

As with all inventions, you never really know what ultimate usage will evolve, but one thing you can be sure of, someone in marketing will always be asking:

How can we use this to reach our consumer? ;)

From Skadeedle [Infographic]: Email Marketing Etiquette Dos & Don’ts

Email Marketers! You can’t afford NOT to address each point on the infographic below! Don’t risk an “Opt-out” or an unsubscribe because you overlooked what you might think of as a minor detail. Skadeedle is my favorite new Small Business marketing source. Here’s a fantastic Infographic they created that hits every nail on the head when it comes to what email marketers often overlook. Every single point on both the dos and don’ts are often dismissed or overlooked.

Perhaps #6 Do is the most underused: Include alt text (for those who don’t render images). This has become more important than ever with SmartPhone use on the exponential increase for opening email.

For better results in your email marketing – PRINT THIS OUT and keep it handy for every time you send an email to market your business!

Email Marketing Etiquette Dos & Don’ts [Infographic] - An Infographic from Skadeedle

Embedded from Skadeedle