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Nine Ways Media Monitoring Gets Better

Nine Ways Media Monitoring Gets Better.

Be aware of the ways to track mentions of you and your organization on line. It matters.
Be aware of the ways to track mentions of you and your organization on line. It matters.

There’s this joke that says what other people say about you is none of your business. It’s not terribly funny nor is it true by any stretch. You are a brand. That’s right, you. Whether you are an employee, business owner, wannabe business owner, or fledgling blogger, your reputation on-line will help to make or break your brand. Worse, employers are monitoring what you say or said on line. I am not aware of anyone ever being rewarded for a positive post about an employer. They are not watching to catch you doing something nice.

Similarly, most customers who post reviews on line are not inspired to do so because of overwhelmingly wonderful treatment or service. Our species is wired to focus on the negatives, the failures, goofs and stumbles that should not characterize any of us but will unless we pay attention. If you want the web to paint an accurate portrait of who you really are, it is important that you be aware of what’s out there.

Articles written by or about you, blog posts, social media or on line reviews all combine together and spill out onto the screen as a reputation. Your reputation! And since you cannot control much of what gets said about you online it’s a good idea to monitor and respond to things that are said about you, your products and/or services.

  1. Brand Yourself. I like Brand Yourself (http://brandyourself.com/) and I use it myself. They give me the option of doing things with the tool myself or paying for expertise when needed. It’s easy to use and if nothing else shows what’s out there whether good or bad.
  2. Google Alerts. Enter your name, your company name into Google Alerts (https://www.google.com/alerts) and it will sort, sift, collate and send you what you want and need to know. Just put the name of the company and any other key words and receive e-mail alerts. The best part is that there is no charge for this.
  3. Social Mention. A very cool way to see what’s on line and in social media. Social Mention (http://www.socialmention.com) is a social media search and analysis platform that aggregates user-generated content from across the universe into a single stream of information. It allows you to easily track and measure what people are saying about you, your company, a new product, or any topic across the web’s social media landscape in real-time. Social Mention monitors 100+ social media properties directly including: Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc.
  4. Hootesuite (https://hootsuite.com) offers business a way to track mentions on social media in places like Face Book, Twitter, Google Plus, Linked In and others. To leverage all of the tools on here there is a fee, but it is very reasonable.
  5. A more expensive tool, but Trackur (http://www.trackur.com) offers a lot more in terms of value and capability. In addition to monitoring mentions, it has a social analytics dashboard that provides knowing about trends and sentiments as expressed on line.
  6. As the name implies, Reputology (https://www.reputology.com) the study of your reputation. This tool is directed at customer reviews. It monitors and manages online reviews by providing alerts, dashboards, and analytics. In addition, the tool includes a summary report to help you make decisions based on consumer feedback. It integrates with Hootsuite and other social media management tools. It is not free, but certainly valuable.
  7. Do you own a franchise business or work in marketing or management for one? Consider Chatmeter (http://www.chatmeter.com). It provides reviews, social media, listing accuracy and search rankings for multiple stores. Pricing varies for and gets steep for chains with over 20 outlets.
  8. Review Concierge. Are you a medical doctor or do you run a medical practice? With Review Concierge (https://reviewconcierge.com), you can monitor 75 web sites where patients can read reviews by other patients. Doctors go to school a lot, so Review Concierge gives a weekly report card. I think the people who work in a doctors office are the ones who will create the most trouble for a physician. This is a good tool for you, doctor.
  9. Want to know every time someone says something about you? Sure there’s a fee, but Socialdraft (http://socialdraft.com) sends real-time notifications when a business is mentioned on the web or in social media. Monitoring the general social media sites, it also scans niche sites that specialize in restaurants, travel, medical, legal, and real estate industries.

Do you need more to do? Probably not, but this is important. What other people say about you is your business.

 

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Six Steps For Expert Blog Interviews

Better blogs can be had in six steps. Easy!
Better blogs can be had in six steps. Easy!

Six Steps For Expert Blog Interviews.  Nothing will add to your credibility and blog readership like interviewing someone in your field who is already a recognized expert. It’s the opposite of guilt by association, but I don’t know what or even if there is a saying for that. Maybe “smart by association” or “expert in proximity” are those labels. But you want to be thought of and remembered in the same way that those experts are. How do you do that? Where do you go to find someone to interview and once you find them, how do you convince them to talk with you? While there are no guarantees offered here, the steps listed below are the ones I use to book guests for my podcast.

  1. Research via Google News Alerts. I do a podcast called The Collectors Show. Every week I interview someone who is a recognized expert in his or her respective field of collecting. I’ve interviewed people who are regulars on “Antiques Roadshow” along with others who hold records for collecting, authors of price guides, tour guides and some with collections that are non-traditional. I’ve interviewed a man who collects vacuum cleaners, another who collects mustard, one who collects barf bags and another who collects fishing lures. I found them all with Google News Alerts . Google News Alerts provides as much information as I can read about collecting, collectors and collectibles. There is always a local paper or some other media outlet that covers something of interest that will show up on the alert. There is so much news about collecting and collectibles, that I also do a “news from the world of collecting” segment. Find your experts via Google News Alerts.
  2. Send and e-mail invitation. Once you located the person you want to interview, send him/her an email invitation. Introduce yourself and describe what you want to do. Tell them there is no charge for participating and that you are a friendly outlet for their views and opinions. I always say, “ours is friendly program with a friendly audience, this is not 60 Minutes.” More often than not the person you invite will say yes. In fact I have done over 50 shows and only been turned down twice.
  3. Send a list of questions. Whether you intend to record the interview over Skype, for a podcast or a written blog, do the interviewee the courtesy of sending a list of questions in advance. This will result in a better interview because your interviewee will be better prepared with more thoughtful answers. Worried about spontaneity or journalistic integrity? Well, if you are a paid member of the news media that is a reasonable consideration. If you are, on the other hand, someone who blogs because of a love of the topic you blog about, it is not. In addition to better answers, you will save time for yourself and for your interviewee. Most bloggers have real jobs, so making a good use of time is better for you too.
  4. Presume you are already friends. I had the chance to meet and work with a brilliant marketer whose name is Stan Slap (http://www.slapcompany.com/site/) Among the many things that I learned from him was “the presumption of acquaintance” with the audience. It amounts to writing as though you were writing a letter to a friend. It works when writing sales letters, brochures and it also works with interviews. Listen to some of your favorite media hosts or reporters and make note of the tone of the interview. I’m a fan of radio, so I listen to it a lot. And the thing I learned from listening to them is that they always sound like they know the person they are interviewing. Most of the time, they have never met and have never even talked on the phone before the interview starts. But you would never know that from listening. The radio personality I liked the most was a man named Ian Punnet. Ian is not on the air any more but if you go to the Coast-to-Coast web site (coasttocoastam.com), you can find some of his old shows. For a good television example, watch Jimmy Fallon. You would think he knows everyone on his program really well. He doesn’t but you would never know that from watching. If you decide to do a podcast, Blog Talk Radio is the first obvious resource. Webmaster Radio is another one to keep an eye on.
  5. Edit sparingly. For radio, podcasts or video, this used to be called “live to tape” but since no one uses tape any more, it is probably called something different. Heavily edited content looks and reads like it is abbreviated. When I do the podcast interviews I hardly every do any editing of the audio. The only time I do is when the dog barks, I start sneezing or coughing, or there is some other exterior interruption that is out of my control. If you sent the questions to your interviewee for written responses, treat them the same way. If you have to edit answers, make sure the person you interview knows this in advance. You may have to edit because of space or time limits. People understand that and will forgive you, but only if you tell them in advance.
  6. Make interviews a regular addition to your blog. This will help you with unique content for your blog in the form of expert input and provide a nice break for you. If you blog regularly you know that it is hard work and that letting someone else add his or her voice will allow you to learn and re-charge all at once.

Like most everything there is a lot more on this topic and it is freely available via the Internet. These 6 tips are based on my experience. I hope they are useful to you.