Posts Tagged ‘Maria Duron’

Resource Report: Why Managing Your List is the Key to Your Email Newsletter Success

Thursday, September 19th, 2013
medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron
Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

Why Managing Your List is the Key to Your Email Newsletter Success

One of the most effective strategies in word of mouth marketing is the utilization of an email list or newsletter. Many online entrepreneurs often make the mistake of maintaining a SINGLE email list. This means that they simply blast their marketing messages to the same audience over and over again. If you’ve been doing this in your email marketing campaigns, it’s time to fine-tune your methods by segmenting your audience. Segmentation is about dividing the people in your email list into smaller segments based on factors like demographics, interests, and/or their preferences on certain services and products.

There are a lot of reasons why you should segment your audience. First, your mailing list consists of people with varying interests and preferences. By segmenting them, you ensure the right messages are received by the right people. Second, segmentation will significantly decrease the number of people unsubscribing from your mailing list. This is for the simple fact that your subscribers will only be receiving messages that they are genuinely interested in. Lastly, segmentation improves your conversion rate. By sending relevant content to your lists based on the segments they belong, recipients will be more likely to avail themselves to your offers.

Here are a few tips on how you should segment your audience:

#1. Look into your existing email list and think of how you can divide it into small, relevant segments. The best way to do this is to directly ask your list’s recipients and let them choose the segments they want to join. When given a choice, your subscribers will be more than willing to choose a segment, if only to avoid unwanted messages filling their inboxes.

Key Point: Ask them! Avoid being like most who “guess” what they think their target audience wants.

#2. Use a sign-up form to determine which segment a subscriber should be listed with. The trick here is to ask the right questions the moment someone registers with your newsletter. He or she would then be included in a segment based on the answers they provided.

#3. Analyze audience behavior. Study how they interact with your messages. What links are they clicking? What type of messages are they opening? You then divide them into segments based on their behavior.

Key Point: If you’re not using email marketing tools to capture and measure this, then you’re wasting your time and the time of your email recipients.

#4. Segment your audience based on your relationships with them. How you do this would depend on the kind of business you run. For example, you can segment your list by customers, employees, volunteers, and so on.

Follow these practical tips and you’ll be on your way to improving the results you get from your email marketing campaigns.

Effectiveness in your email marketing efforts (which is an extremely viable and valuable method since you own your list) coupled with the visibility of social media, work well together IF you work them well.

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Resource Report: Linking Your Milestones to Ignite Your Word of Mouth

Thursday, June 20th, 2013
medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron
Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

Linking Your Milestones to Ignite Your Word of Mouth

YOUnique heralding in the 100th issue is a milestone and because of this special event this Resource Report is focusing on how you can link your milestones to ignite word of mouth for your personal brand.

I’ve been lurking lately as many have shared their strategy and philosophy around using one of the oldest social resources we have – LinkedIn in exuding and engaging their personal brand.

Here are some Milestones to achieve to make the most of this network:

Milestone:

#1. Know how people search for and find you. Get the premium version for one month, at least. It’s up to you if you would like to subscribe longer, but you want at least one month’s worth so you can see the keywords and phrases people use when they search and find you on LinkedIn. It will give you insights into how a potential referral source, recruiter, mentor or company found you on the network.

#2. Control the network. Set your settings so that you’re not overwhelmed with LinkedIn. You can control the settings of how alerts, notifications and emails are sent to you – and when they are sent. Take this action step to avoid any negative reactions from an overloaded inbox.

#3. Guard your reputation. Set your privacy setting so no one can see your connections. Yes, I said it and I do that. I do not want anyone to think that because I connect with someone means that I immediately “endorse them”. There is a “halo effect” when you connect with someone and others see that connection. The perception someone has of you is literally built by association so avoid any incorrect assumptions by protecting your list.

#4. Connect with everyone and accept every request that is a legitimate person. My rule of thumb is if it’s a fake name, or spammy sounding account (i.e. First Name: Mister; Last Name: President), or if they don’t have a photo with their account – I won’t connect with them. Everyone else – I say ‘yes’.

That might seem counter to Milestone #3, so here’s why. The beauty of the network is not just who you connect with but who they know. Those connections into their contact sphere matter because those connection lines are tracked by the system. When you need to reach to someone or into a company for research or a connection, the more people you’re connected with the better and more information you have available to you for your research.

The six degrees of separation are in full play on this network. Use it to your advantage.

#5. Join 50 groups. You can join 50 groups in LinkedIn. Once you are a member of a group, you can connect with any member in that group without having a direct connection to them or knowing their email address. The group connection is enough.

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Resource Report: Resources Review – Are You Visually Engaging?

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013
medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron
Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

Resources Review – Are You Visually Engaging?

To be more engaging use photos – familiar advice across the social networks isn’t it? Facebook and Google+ pictures have become larger and more prominent; Twitter added Vine for more visual representations on your tweets and Instagram and Pinterest were born out of the love of playing with and sharing visual images. Photos dominate screen real estate and really draw your attention!

To do it right for you, here’s some suggestions:

  1. Watermark or put your name/tagline on every photo or graphic you create.
  2. If you’re using photos of you, remember your background; be at eye level with the camera or looking slight up at the camera (looking down is not your best side).
  3. If you use someone else’s photo, be careful with licenses and attributions. Take time to ready the rules – they matter!
  4. If you can say it in numbers and in a graphic – do both. Catch all people in the best way they like to consume information.

Visual storytelling increases engagement. The statistics prove it with videos shared 12 times more than text and photos shared twice as much more than text updates or posts.

As a bootstrapping buzz maker, here are the tools that are my faves:

  • PicMonkey: Nothing to download it can do all those things that you’ve been waiting or adding to a list to have a graphic designer get done for you. No more waiting! You can add text, graphics, themes and even make photo collages.
  • Quozio or ShareasImage: Have a great quote that you would like to put a background behind then quozio.com can do that for you. Simply beautiful and easy to use!
  • PicMarkr: Helps you put your watermark in wherever you need it on a photo or a quote. We know how viral social can be and when someone shares a photo or graphic you’ve created make sure it makes it continues to do the viral work for you by bringing people back to you.
  • Infogr.am: Make your own infographics. Now, you, can share information in a visual format – easily.
  • Vizify: Plug in your social media sites and Vizify creates a series of interactive infographics that show the best of you.

For some visually graphic tools that are specific to a certain social network, my faves are:

  • TimelineImageTool: Lets you create your own image, add text, then upload it automatically to your Facebook page for free!
  • Autreplanete Social Image Maker: This online tool makes it easy to resize and retouch photos for a wide range of social networks and chat applications.

I purposely didn’t include any links to assure you that I’m not affiliated with any of them nor do I make money from any of them and they’re not my clients. If anything, I’m their client and have used each one of their services and appreciated them.

What tools have you found that are kind to your budget – both your time and money budget?

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Resource Report: Postrocket and Your Personal Brand Visibility

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron

Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

Postrocket and Your Personal Brand Visibility

If you have a business profile on Facebook (which I encourage clients to have so that they harness the visibility benefits that Facebook delivers), you may have heard of Edge Rank. Edge Rank is that algorithm that makes Facebook so very unique from other social networks. Most social networks post items out to your contacts chronologically. EdgeRank determines who likes to interact with you most and what they like from you to present more of those types of posts to them. Conversely, if people are not interacting with your posts or “hiding” them, the algorithm will show them “less of” those items they do not like.

But, here’s the great question – how can we even get them to like or dislike anything if they’re not seeing it? 97% of people who “like” your Facebook page will never see it again. The only time they will see any of your updates is in your home stream/feed when you post updates. Think about. When you like a page, do you really ever go back to visit the page itself?

Screen Shot 2013-03-21 at 3.47.27 PMEnter PostRocket, a Facebook optimization tool, designed to optimize your post in format and time of release to ensure that the most of your fan base sees and interacts with it. To be clear, I do not sell PostRocket, I think it’s a great tool to optimize what you’re doing on Facebook.

Here to help

Often, our Facebook updates are links to blog posts we’ve written. The downside is that links, often garner the least attention in Facebook’s algorithm. Why? Because when you click on them, they take you off of Facebook. And, like any other site, Facebook favors those actions that keep the users on their site – longer.

What PostRocket has done is create a system that automatically pulls featured photos from a link and adds them to the link, turning an article link into a visually attractive post. It also allows you to enhance your photos by adding text and filters to give your photo a unique look that the audience can share with their own networks right within the post. You don’t have to have a graphic designer, open another window or do anything else — Handy and timesaving all in one feature!

There even when you aren’t

Perhaps one of the most helpful things about PostRocket is it will study how the audience reacts to your material, and offer helpful insight into the right content that will engage your audience. In many cases, location does play a big part in activity, and as we know, the online world has no boundaries. That means it’s possible to have a large audience that isn’t on your time schedule. PostRocket offers the benefit of being there when you’re not really there, posting when you’re away and adjusting the post time on it’s own to maximize visibility, making PostRocket a third, and much needed, hand in the social world.

Learn more about these resources in my podcast.

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Resource Report: RebelMouse: A Fresh Personal Brand Experience

Thursday, February 21st, 2013
medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron

Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

RebelMouse: A Fresh Personal Brand Experience

Let me introduce you to RebelMouse! RebelMouse was designed by former Huffington Post chief tech officer, Paul Berry. When Paul and I talked about it, this last spring I couldn’t wait to show everyone! Why? Because I love time saving, fresh, valuable and practical tools and RebelMouse is all of that. (Disclaimer: I do not sell RebelMouse! I’m simply a raving fan and I hope you become one too!

Your own updated and fresh home page

RebelMouse provides you with a homepage that collects all of your social media accounts into one place. The page is constantly refreshed – without you having to do anything! It gathers your fresh social media content automatically, and then allows you to rearrange your posts to highlight those that you feel deserve it (and demote those that don’t).

RebelMouse also provides you with a platform where you can create new posts and content. You can invite people to contribute to and follow your page, both of which foster the sense of community found with other social media sites. Analytics are provided to help you understand the demographics of your traffic.

The possible uses are nearly endless ranging from basic attempts to aggregate social media to advanced social marketing. RebelMouse’s features and format make it a great option for blogging and disseminating information about specific topics. For example, a page on categories of products or even famous personalities could group posts and tweets about a particular topic and give you a vast amount of information from a variety of sources. This rich complexity of information seems to be the internet at its finest.

It’s a great place for a snapshot of what your connections are interested in and talking about across all social networks. The site is also a repository of information for what interests you and what you are focused on.

A combination of the best

RebelMouse combines the greatest aspects of other social media sites into one easily digestible feed. The simplicity of Twitter is still present; you can read status updates on RebelMouse. But an additional layer of complexity is added when those Tweets are juxtaposed with other comments, news stories, and pictures that logically belong next to them.

It’s visual aspects also allow for fluid movement between pictures and text, all the while in a way that allows you to absorb information unintentionally. This format, similar to Pinterest, adds another informative layer. It provides an ease of transition between text and images that is hard to find elsewhere.

One of the reasons why this site is so useful is that we find updating our Twitter or Facebook feeds very easy, but when it comes to keeping our homepage up to date, we struggle. RebelMouse does away with that problem and takes all of the difficulty out of having an updated homepage.

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Resource Report: Pixability: Your Online Video Grader

Thursday, January 24th, 2013
medheadshotResource Report
By Maria Elena Duron

Reviewing resources to help exude and engage your brand!

Pixability: Your Online Video Grader

Video can either boost your presence or fall flat and remain unfound and unseen. It’s a rarity to see a personal brand go ‘gangnam style”. Many think that their video provides stellar, spot on information and are left wondering exactly why their video only had single or double-digit views. Are you assessing the right elements of your video needed to connect with your target audience?

What is Pixability?

To help tune your YouTube video strategy, Pixability has designed an analytical tool that provides some of the most in-depth examination of exactly how you are applying yourself to the video world. If you’re going to create videos, you need to be able to optimize your investment and generate the awareness your brand needs to grow.

To accomplish this, Pixability applied the metrics of customer response to the experience they have on the web (video, social, search, and website) and began examining exactly what makes a video “succeed”. This included search engine response, location, and ultimately the viewer’s interaction with the video through different mediums. The result was a video analytic tool which is designed to help the user tune their YouTube’s account to provide better results and reach a wider audience.

How does it work?

Pixability’s Online Video Grader performs an in-depth analysis of your video’s structure. While it doesn’t study the content itself, it does target such aspects as description, link design and correctness, playlists, tags, and overall views (which can reflect content value).

Basically, it takes your material under consideration and evaluates how well you’re actually marketing your video. Do you utilize links effectively? Do you utilize your description to the maximum (Google searches for keywords in the description)? Another area that tends to be an issue is the importance of constructing a playlist of your videos. While it might seem a little repetitive, it does help make viewers aware that this isn’t the only video that you’ve established..

What can I get from it?

If you have existing videos, those will remain on the scoreboard, and factor into your ‘grade’. It highlights areas you need to address (weaknesses) and shows you your strong points.

But, it doesn’t just target the usage of YouTube itself; it also analyzes the video in relation to your website. Do you link back to your site? Is it promoted effectively? Videos on your website tend to help improve the experience for your visitors and help promote your online strategy.

Perhaps the most prominent tool for sharing video is through social links such as Facebook and Twitter. The initial question is: How often do you do this? Engagement through social networks is one of the key ways to promoting your brand through video. It’s quick and reaches an already established audience where it can be shared to encourage word of mouth marketing. It’s essential that you strive to get your video in front of the right audience.

Try the free version and share your results!

Maria Elena Duron is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.

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Personal Brand Book Reviews: Likeable Social Media and Likeable Business

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Personal Brand Book Reviews
By Maria Elena Duron
Wondering if you should read “that” book? Our seasoned personal brand strategists offer their in depth reviews.

Likeable Social Media and Likeable Business.

by Dave Kerpen

Likeable Business


Do You Have a Likeable Personal Brand?

These days with a plethora of people we can reach out to worldwide to do business with you not only have to be visible, competent and credible – you must also be ‘likeable’. That old business mantra “people do business with people they know, like and trust” rings true to the online clickable ‘you’.

Dave Kerpen splashed onto the ‘online scene’ with the wedding of the century when he and his then fiancé, now wife, Carrie, had their wedding on a professional baseball field right before a game. They solicited sponsors, created online support and had the wedding of their dreams along with making money at it, too. With their experience, they started their own marketing agency and have grown to the spot of #118 on Inc.’s list of the Fastest Growing U.S. Companies.

I had visited with Dave and Carrie Kerpen several times via phone but it wasn’t until my sister, a student at DePaul University, called with news of her class textbook, “Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistible Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook (and Other Social Networks)”, that I actually slowed down to read the book. For personal brands, I recommend both of these books. Your online first impression needs to be as stellar and as true to you as your offline one. Here are some great reasons why a personal brand needs to read these because:

  1. Social media cannot make up for a bad reputation – It just can’t. Game the system all you want to place all the “good links” on Google at the top of your page yet that still doesn’t change the overall sentiment. As a personal brand, know that all the ‘heavy lifting’ of brand discovery and creating a communication plan must happen first before you launch onto an active social arena. It’s that clearness in messaging and focus that will make you ‘likeable’.
  2. Social media is not free- without the homework of extraction and brand expression you can waste countless hours and never gain back the share of mind (or time) that someone has already put forth into finding out who you are. People are just too busy, they have little time to do extensive research and without something compelling or unique to draw them to spend more time with or on you, they will move on.
  3. There is an ROI to “Thank You” that most people do not understand. Social tools also allow leaders to more efficiently express gratitude within an organization and social media creates public spaces in which thankfulness can be passed on and paid forward. This is not to take the place of a personal thank you. It is a way to share appreciation beyond full measure with that little bit extra.


Likeable Social Media
was the first book. Likeable Business: Why Today’s Consumers Demand More and How Leaders Can Deliver launched just this week. For personal brands, both are valuable and provide support for the solid personal brand framework we teach at Reach.

Maria Elena Duron is CEO (chief engagement officer) of buzz2bucks | a word of mouth marketing firm – Creating Conversation, Community, Connection and Commerce around Your Brand. She is author of the book, Mouth-to-Mouth Marketing and a columnist for several print and online publications

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And Now a Word from…: Personal Word of Mouth Needs Three Networks

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

And Now a Word from…
Maria Elena Duron
/United States
A monthly column featuring a new guest author from around the world!


Personal Word of Mouth Needs Three Networks

How do you choose the networks that to be involved in?
Choosing to join an organization, affiliation or networking group is a hefty decision. You are about to invest valuable dollars and even more valuable time involving yourself with this group. How do you know which groups to involve yourself in? How do you know “how many” is a good mix? When is it time to say “no”? Three networks maximum will keep you focused. You can do more however, do so with great thought, because it can dramatically water down your other efforts. Want to know which three networks?

1. A Social Service Network: For example, a church group, Rotary Club, Lion Clubs, a non-profit committee or board.

A Social Service Network provides you variety in your contacts along with a chance to deepen relationships with people who have similar interests. A social service network, however, is not about doing business….it is about the “mission” of the organization…for the greater good, for “service above self.” Going in with an announcement of “I’m looking for business” will be met with resistance and scorn. Instead, use this opportunity to showcase your wonderful talent (talent is AS IMPORTANT as treasure to non-profit, volunteer groups) and build relationships with those who have similar interests. It is important that you are “genuine” in your interest in the organization and its program. If you’re not, that “music” will play loud and clear to the members who are there for the MISSION. Utilize this opportunity to “make a difference”, “be seen and remembered” and to “showcase you work ethic”…remember, how effective you are as a VOLUNTEER speaks to how effective a person you are in business.


2. An Industry Specific Network:
For example, for an accountant an accounting society; for a engineer, the Permian Basin Society of Engineers, etc.

An Industry Specific Network, keeps you “in the know” and at the “cutting edge” of your industry. Who wants to work with an accountant who is well-versed in the 1998 tax laws?! We want someone who is on the cutting edge of their industry. We associate with those who exceed their industry standards and can keep us in the inside loop.

3. A Hard Contact Network: For example, a community based leads group that can tell you the “in’s & out’s” of what is happening in your community; a Connections Club, that keeps you in contact with professionals in their industries…the real “movers & shakers”!

A Hard Contact Network keeps you in the know on the local front. It will keep you posted on new buildings before the ground is broken; about new businesses before the signs are posted and leadership moves before announcements are made.

The key here is to make sure that you have someone who is truly in the know as opposed to people “posing” that they’re in the know. If you’re not sure, start asking around, especially those who are in community leadership….they’ll be happy to share their input.

Maria Elena Duron is CEO (chief engagement officer) of buzz2bucks | a word of mouth marketing firm – Creating Conversation, Community, Connection and Commerce around Your Brand. She is author of the book, Mouth-to-Mouth Marketing and a columnist for several print and online publications

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The Top 10 for 2010 on Personal Branding TV

Friday, December 31st, 2010

This has been a great start to our new site, Personal Branding TV!

To that end, we’ve compiled a list of the 10 most popular videos on the site.  We’ve also included 5 runners-up.

We also accept guest videos, so if you want to submit a video take a look at our submission guidelines.

Here is wishing you all a Happy and Healthy New Year!

The Top 10:

1. Personal Branding – How NOT to Build Your Personal Brand


2. Personal Branding How-To – What Color is Your Personal Brand?

3. Personal Branding – Why Personal Branding?


4. Technological Change and New Approaches to Leadership by Personal Branding Strategist – Sheila Goldgrab

5. Low Tech, High Impact Word of Mouth for Personal Brands

6. Personal Branding How-To – Getting Good on Video


7. Career Distinction – Express Your Essence in a Sentence


8. Personal Branding – Why Video?


9. Personal Branding – Eliminate the ‘F-Word’


10. Personal Branding Strategist – Valerie Sokolosky Offers Advice to Job Seekers


And the 5 runners up to the top 10 (in no particular order):

11. Career Distinction – Snail Mail
12. Career Distinction – Get Out of the Office
13. Personal Branding How-To – Twitter Recommendations and Referrals
14. Career Distinction – Kirsten Dixson on the Today Show: Minding Your Manners Online
15. Personal Branding and Online Identity Development for Women by Personal Branding Strategist – Rachel Gogos

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