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April 2013

How to Submit Your New Podcast to iTunes


One of the most important things you can do as a new podcaster is submit your show to iTunes. If you, like me, are new to podcasting, however, you might not know where to go in the iTunes stores to get your podcast listed.

Luckily, one of our past speakers, Ray Ortega, breaks it down into a step-by-step process in this video:

[youtube width=”560″ height=”315″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXc7WCq_25c[/youtube]

Here are some further resources to help you to begin podcasting and get started setting up your podcast feed:

If you’re interested in even more podcasting information, you should also check out our free ebook on the topic:

becoming a podcaster

Find the Perfect Bite For Customers’ Mobile Appetite


mobile appetite

Mobile web site up and running. Check. Reading latest trends on marketing for smartphones and tablets. Double Check. Wondering what to serve up next to your mobile audience. Triple Check.

Now is the time to…pause between courses. First off, congratulations on making the jump to mobile. Next up:  Step back and look at your business big picture and assess what to add to your mobile marketing menu.

Consider these factors before embarking on a deeper financial and time investment:

#1 Focus on short and long term business goals: Does mobile fit with how your customers engage with your business? Are you a local business seeking new customers? Do you have an established clientele? An online store with a wide-reaching audience?  These are but a few questions to answer before proceeding.

#2 Mobile is part of your marketing strategy, not  plate du jour: Mobile promotion is an extension of your  integrated marketing program and should not operate in its own silo nor be a stand-in for a plan. In the excitement of the collective mobile moment, best intentions can get burned, resulting in a disconnect between your online and offline messaging and brand look and feel—not to mention confusing your customers.

#3 To-go with your customer adds responsibility. Sounds heavy but it’s true. Or as Ford Global Head of Social Media Scott Monty said at his NMX keynote this January, “Mobile is like a piece of jewelry, you have to be invited there.” He advocated using that privilege wisely. Otherwise, your business could be dismissed just as quickly as it was sitting down at the table.

So…are you hungry to go further down the mobile marketing path? Here are some popular and effective ideas to consider:

The Free Appetizer: Search

One of the most basic but sometimes overlooked mobile marketing tactics is listing your business on mobile search engines, portals, and web sites. And if you’re a neighborhood business, even better: Google reports that half of all mobile searches are local. Keep these three things in mind:

  1. Duplication is a good thing: mobile search is often separate than “desktop” search.
  2. Use consistent contact information everywhere.
  3. List your business in as many broad categories as possible so it’s found searching multiple ways.

Google Maps and Facebook are the most popular search methods, but other major ones include Google Local, Bing Business Portal, Yahoo Local, and YP. Don’t forget about secondary listings like CitySearch, city and neighborhood directories, and industry/trade group listings. Make sure you are also covered on mobile business sites like Yelp, Facebook, and Foursquare. Think of all the places you do business with, official and unofficial partners, and awareness opportunities.

The Weekly Special: SMS (Short Messaging Service aka Texting) and MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service)

According to Mogreet, SMS texts have a 95% open rate and are accessible to 98% of all mobile consumers, making it one of the most cost-effective, targeted marketing tactics—yet one of the most underutilized. Reason? Companies sometimes overlook the humble text as not sexy enough or  right “image”…they might want to think again, but proceed with care.

While the high open rates is great news, there are caveats: Make your text count with a strong CTA, especially since some receivers may incur a fee, and there are also reams of intimidating text marketing guidelines. The three most important ones:

  1. Get  opt-out permission.
  2. Document it.
  3. Be clear on what the receiver will get.

(See Guide to Text Messaging Regulations and Best Practices for complete rules).

There are numerous ways to laser-focus your text program: day/time (lunch specials, holidays), customer segments (repeat buyers, zip codes), or exclusive offers (VIP, limited-time), to name a few. There are no official “rules” on frequency, but general guidelines are no more than once a week or as part of a specific campaign. There are many text service vendors and prices vary on quantities and features.

MMS is a bigger time and money investment but also more attention-grabbing. Add video, mobile coupons, QR codes, music files, or any other visual elements. The same rules apply as SMS except it may eat up more data for the receiver or be slower loading.

Cross-promote SMS/MMS and provide ample opportunities to sign up on your web site, place of business, social media, business cards—anywhere your customers can see it.

The Fine Diner: Mobile Apps 

You might think apps are reserved for big budgets, large companies, and out of your league. These days, apps for your small business are within reach. There are many reasons to consider this prix fixe: For starters, if you are local business, research shows users prefer apps to connect.  Apps also show that you are catering to your customers, and lastly, they serve as a virtual mobile screen billboard  24/7. That said, an app should not replace a mobile web site, but serve as an alternate way to interact with your business. Make the app useful, intuitive, and require only few steps to complete a task. Be sure to cross-promote the app on your web, social sites, and ads.

There are several ways you can build an app for an iPhone or Android  (the most popular, but others are available): vendor-created or DIY . Because apps are now an established category, small businesses can take advantage of common pre-built functionality like maps, online ordering, appointment setting, social sharing, and other tasks that require  simple tailoring to your business. Not surprisingly, the more customization, the more expensive the app.

What’s the special sauce for your business?

These ideas may stir up  your mobile marketing recipe—there are also ads (including in-app ads), video,  and other tactics that haven’t even been introduced yet. Mobile marketing is a fast-paced, ever-changing landscape. Whatever approaches you take—like a new entrée—taste-test it, refine it, or decide it’s not delicious enough and scrap it altogether before making a big time or money commitments.

Image Credit: Altered, from Bigstock

The Daily Social Media Habits of Successful Bloggers


Want to know the secret for engaging with your followers online? In the world of social media, it’s all about your habits. The daily habits you implement as social media routines directly impact the ways you’re able to connect with your followers. When you are consistent, focused, and strategic in your efforts, the results show it.

Here’s what you should be doing, every day, on social media channels:

Google Plus: Post every new blog post.

When you post the link to your latest blog post on your Google Plus profile, that content gets indexed faster and you expose your content to your network. What’s more, content on Google Plus tends to do well in Google search results, helping you improve overall SEO. Here’s an example of how Brian Samuels, the blogger behind A Thought for Food, publishes his new posts on Google Plus, usually with commentary and #hashtags:


Pinterest: Pin every day—5 to 30 times.

As with every social media site, the idea with Pinterest is to be a resource of good content without being annoying. You shouldn’t pin nonstop anymore than you should pin infrequently; for the best results, pin every day. Pin content that’s relevant to your brand in some way—but feel free to think outside the box, too.  The more quality content you pin, the more opportunities for others to repin your content and promote you profile, as well as to find your content through search. Look at the example of photographer Nicole Franzen, who regularly pins bright, beautiful images across her 31 different boards:


Editor’s note: If you don’t have time to sit on Pinterest all day every day, you can use Pingraphy to schedule your pins so they appear throughout the day instead of all at once.

Twitter: Tweet every day—at least 4-5 times.

According to research published at Media Bistro, profiles that Tweet at least four to five times a day see some of the best results on Twitter. Use your updates to interact with followers, retweet info you find interesting, share valuable information, and promote your content. Whole Foods Market does this well, posting relevant updates almost every hour:


Facebook: Share Images and Quotes.

An article at TechCrunch last year pointed out that Facebook updates typically receive responses for up to three hours after being posted—so spreading updates out by at least that amount of time makes sense. The content that does best on Facebook are images and quotes—users tend to stay on the network rather than clicking links that send them away. For an example of a blogger who’s doing this well, check out Deliciously Organic:


Overall: Think Strategically.

If looking at the above list feels overwhelming and you’re wondering how to find the time to do all these tasks each day, don’t be discouraged. To help you maximize your productivity, here are a few tips for being active on social media without spending every day tied to a computer screen:

  • Schedule Facebook posts and Twitter updates: Use a tool like Buffer or Hootsuite to plan your posts throughout a day. You can schedule updates to run at various intervals to spread them out for maximum impact.
  • Take a few minutes each morning to curate content: Rather than hanging on your social networks all afternoon, set aside a certain chunk of time each day to pull together shareable content. Because you’re scheduling posts, you can easily set these updates to go live all day long.
  • Monitor and adjust: Not every blogger needs to be on every social media platform, so test the different ones o see which makes the most sense for you. If you find engagement on Facebook brings in most of your traffic, make that site a priority; if regular and relevant Tweeting yields few results, focus your attention elsewhere.

Whether you blog about baseball or beauty products, using a chunk of weeks or a full month to test these social media habits is a good idea. Set aside a period in which you consistently post, share, pin, and tweet every day—and, at the end of that period, take a look at the results. They might surprise you.

How Video Bloggers Can Use Flow: 5 Questions to Ask to Improve Your Vlogging Skills


Gideon Shalwick is one of my favorite video bloggers, and in this video, he talks about using “flow” to be a better video blogger. This is actually a skill you can apply to almost anything in life. Flow is what you might call “getting in the zone” and it helps you master a skill even when you’re starting with zero knowledge.

Here’s how Gideon suggests you use flow to improve your vlogging skills:

[youtube width=”560″ height=”315″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WgNAHEc34H0[/youtube]

It boils down to asking yourself the following five questions:

  1. Why are you video blogging?
  2. What clear goals do you have have as a video blogger?
  3. What information do I need to reach my goal and where can I get it?
  4. What easy actions can I take to get a result that works toward my goal?
  5. Based on my results, how do I need to improve?

Again, although Gideon applies these tips to video blogging (and skateboarding) in his video lesson, you can use this same process to improve at just about anything! Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below.

3 Ways to Create Better Images for Your Blog Posts


Without a doubt, creating images for blog posts ranks pretty low on my list of favorite tasks. Yet, I’ve found that having compelling images, not just stock photography, is important for getting social shares and keeping my readers interested, especially with longer posts.

I’m not a very good photographer, though. It certainly isn’t a passion of mine, and I don’t own a DSLR. However, I’ve still come up with a few ways to add compelling images to my blog posts. Here are my three best methods:

1. The Title Image

One of my favorite types of images to create is what I call the “title image.” I like this type of image for my blog posts because they look professional and are readily shared on Facebook and Pinterest. They’re also easy to make using stock photography. Here’s how to make a title image:

  • STEP ONE: Find some stock photography with licensing that allows you to edit it.

The image should be related to your post, but since you’re going to be adding text, the relationship can be looser than if you were only going to use the image. It’s very important that you look not just for Creative Commons images, but also images where the owner stated that it’s okay to alter, because you will be adding text to it. For our example, I’m going to use this image from NMX 2013. Since NMX owns the image, I know that I’m allowed to use it in this blog post and to alter the image with text.

title image example 1

It’s great if you can find an image, like this one of Tom Webster, that has a big blank spot. If you can’t, however, not to worry! Focus on finding a nice shot that fits your post topic rather than an image that is so-so image with a blank spot. I’ll show you in the next step what to do if there’s not a big blank spot.

  • STEP TWO: In your favorite photo-editing program, add your title.

I’m going to show you using PicMonkey, which is free and easy to use. You don’t even have to download anything; it’s an online editing program. You could use Photoshop or whatever other program you have that allows you to add text.

Select a font you like and add the text. It usually works to either center the text, adding breaks so it fits nicely, or to justify the text left or right depending where it is located on the image. If I justified the text in this image, I would left-justify because it’s on the left side. But let’s go with centering the text for now:

title image example 2

This is a nice font for our silly made-up title, but the line in the background is a little distracting. So, a bolder font would probably work better. I’m also going to add a shadow in a contrasting white color to make the words really pop.

title image example 3

That looks pretty nice, and it only took me a few minutes. You can also play around with using different fonts and sizes to make certain words stand out. Remember to create something that represents your brand and your niche well. Here’s an example of a more playful look:

title image example 4

This one took a little longer, but gives you a completely different look. There’s no formula for choosing the right font, size, and colors; you just have to play around with it until you get a look that you like.

But let’s say that your image didn’t have a nice open spot like this picture of Tom. Let’s say instead you have this picture of the crowd watching a session:

title image example 5

In this case, any place you add the text, the busy background will distract you and make it hard to read. So, I suggestion added a faded block of color behind the text. I usually use either black or white and fade to between 30% and 50% depending on how distracting the background is.

title image example 6

You can of course also make it snazzy with drop shadows, fun fonts and colors, etc. but keep in mind that this technique looks best when the title is on a single line, so longer titles don’t work will with this method.

2. The Collage

Another option you have if you want to make a highly-sharable image is to do a collage. I most commonly add the title of my post to these as well, but how you use a college is really up to you. This method is great for list posts or when you’re talking about several tips/products/etc. throughout the course of your post. It allows you to highly several images at once this way.

For example, let’s say I was writing a post called “NMX Speakers Who Make Glasses Look Cool.” I could do this:

collage example 1

Cliff Ravenscraft certainly does make glasses look cool…but if I want to highlight several different speakers in my post, an image of Cliff alone might not be the way to go. So instead, a collage will work well.

  • STEP ONE: Find images to illustrate all of your points.

In this case, I’m going to find images of lots of NMX speakers who wear glasses. As always, remember to use images under the Creative Commons license where the owner allows you to alter.

  • STEP TWO: Open PicMonkey in collage mode.

You can definitely use other image editing programs as well, but PicMonkey is hands down my favorite tool in this case because it has a mode specifically for collages.

  • STEP THREE: Choose a layout that will allow you to highlight your text and add images.

There’s no one right way to do this. You could, for example, choose to have a large box for the text (to add later) or you could create a college where you’ll later add the text over top of the images, like with the title slide.

Here’s the an example with the former:

collage example 2

And the latter:

collage example 3

  • STEP THREE: Add text to your college if desired.

To actually achieve the look you get with the above two images in PicMonkey, you have to save the collage and reopen in regular editing mode to add the text. This is where I also added the blue boxes in both cases. Adding text gives you more of the “title image” look, but a pure collage without text might work well for your needs.

3. The Quote Image

Lastly, a really easy type of image that is usually shared a lot is what I call the quote image. I’m taking a page from print design for this one! When you’re reading a story, especially in a magazine, there are often pull quotes – quotes from the actual text that have been pulled out and made into larger images because they are interesting or important.

This is so easy I’m not even going to break it down into steps for you. All you do is paste a line from your post into a photo editing program. You can use an image or texture for a background or use a simple colored background that coordinates with your blog’s theme.

Here’s an example of a quote I used for an image in a post featuring NMX speaker Dino Dogan:

dino dogan quote

Even better, you can connect an image like that to Click to Tweet and tell your readers via the caption to click on the quote to share it. A good quote is irresistible to share!

So there you have it, my three favorite ways to create images for my blog posts even though I’m not a photographer and don’t know much about editing images. How do you add images to your blog posts? If you have a great method to share or have tried any of the above methods, leave a comment!

Announcing: The Social Shake-Up Conference


The Social Shake-Up

For the last several months we have been keeping a secret from all of you and it has been killing us!

We are thrilled to announce we are partnering with our friends at Social Media Today to produce The Social Shake-Up Conference. You are most likely already familiar with Social Media Today but just in case you are not, it is a thriving, independent, 150,000+ member community of PR, marketing, advertising, and other professionals whose thorough understanding of social media is mission-critical.

What is The Social Shake-Up?

A conference and networking event focusing specifically on the needs of enterprise level businesses who are looking to evolve beyond a business with a social media policy into a true social business.

We recognize that your enterprise level business has unique needs and challenges when it comes to social, local and mobile. That you need a dedicated event where you can network, discuss and learn from your peers, thought leaders and vendors in the social business world.

What kind of content will the conference offer?

The conference will include four keynotes with world class speakers. Stay tuned for those announcements soon. We will offer several half-day, in-depth workshops and six tracks of break-out sessions covering: Big Data, Community and Customers, Content and Marketing, Mobile, Strategy & The C Suite, and The Social Organization.

Here are a few of the topics to be covered in the break-outs:

  • The 360 Customer: How Customer Care and Marketing Can Share and Use Data to Deliver a Better Experience
  • Stop Telling Me to Think Like a Publisher: Content Production Models for Brands
  • Throwing Open the Floodgates: Empowering Employees, Your Most Passionate Ambassadors
  • Playing with Lawyers: Social Media Governance
  • Frankenmarketer: The Expanding Skillset of the Marketer of the Future (my personal favorite!)

You can view the entire current schedule here.

Will there be networking opportunities?

Absolutely, tons of them! We have several informal networking events scheduled in the mornings, afternoons and evenings as well as a two hour “speed dating” period where you can set appointments with other attendees and vendors you have pre-selected to meet with before the event.

Will there be vendors?

Yes, but floor space is limited so if you are interested in participating as a sponsoring vendor please contact Patti right away at Patti@blogworldexpo.com or call 858.309.4747 ext. 109

When and where will it happen?

September 15 – 17, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Atlanta Georgia.

What does it cost?

A full access pass is $1,997 but if you are one of the first 100 people to register by May 10th you can save $1,000 and get your pass for $997!

When Can I register?

Starting right now!

When our friends at Social Media Today polled their community and asked if they wanted to attend an event like this, the response was an overwhelming yes. We have limited space for our inaugural event and it will sell out. So please register early.

Stay tuned to The Social Shake-Up site and our blog for more speaker and sponsor announcements over the upcoming days and weeks.
If you have questions or suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments section. We look forward to seeing you in Atlanta!

Become an NMX 2014 Speaker: How to Submit a Winning Proposal


aaron hockley One of the most common questions I’m asked is this: “What do you think of this idea for an NMX session?”

The truth is, I can give you my opinion on your proposal to speak, but I don’t call the shots. So, I talk to NMX CEO Rick Calvert to find out exactly what he’s looking for when it comes to choosing NMX speakers. Here are some of his best tips:

1. Bring real educational information. Tell attendees something they have never heard before that will immediately improve their blog, podcast, video or business.

2. We really want three solid take aways from every session. So ask yourself, what will attendees think when they leave this room? Will they walk away saying I learned 3 great ideas in that session? You need to explain in your speaker proposal what those ideas are.

3. Keep your speaker proposal short and to the point. We just skip over session ideas that are a mile long with a thousand topics rolled into one. Your session needs to be about a single topic, so hone in on what you know best.

4. Keep your bio short and to the point too. If you have a super impressive bio, like you have written 20 books, appeared on every news network, every newspaper, every magazine, spoken at every social media conference and worked for every fortune 500 company on the planet, please summarize. Do not quote yourself and list every media appearance you have ever made.

5. Please do not submit 10 ideas. Pick one or at the very most two ideas that you think will be AMAZING!

6. Explain the idea, and the take aways of your session clearly. Imagine we are going to print your session description straight out of your submission. Make sure it reads the way you want to present yourself to the world.

7. Be amazing! Not just amazing to a room full of ludites who have never heard of twitter. You need to be amazing to a room full of peers, many of whom are just as smart or smarter than you. You need to ask yourself, “What is the one think I have learned that they may have overlooked and I can share with them?” If you can do that, attendees are going to love you, thank you, throw money at you, and want to be your friend.

8. NEVER EVER EVER EVER SELL YOUR PRODUCT. Do that and attendees will hate you, we will hate you, everyone will hate you. Sure we will all smile at you after your talk and say that was great, but I promise you you are going to get skewered in your speaker evaluations and everyone is going to be telling everyone else they know how all you did was shill your crappy product. Even if your product is great people are going to tell others that is sucks because they are so pissed off at you for stealing their valuable educational time. There’s a time and a place to sell. During your NMX session is not it.

We don’t have space on the schedule for every awesome speaker. Sometimes several people submit sessions about the same general idea. Sometimes, the same session was presented in the past and didn’t attract much interest. Sometimes we go with speakers who have been to NMX before because they’re proven successes with our audience. Sometimes we pass up on past speakers to make room for new faces.

So yes, there is an element of luck as well. But you definitely won’t be accepted if you don’t apply! The NMX 2014 speaker submission form has opened as of this morning, so now’s the time to apply!

Submit Your NMX 2014 Session Proposal Here >

UPDATE: The deadline for submitting your proposal is September 1, 2013. However, we do encourage you to submit your session proposal earlier, as we like to start announcing speakers as soon as possible.

Please, Stop Talking: How to Better Interview Your Podcast Guests


better podcast interviews

Please, stop talking.

Have you ever had a personal crutch or cliché that you used more often than you thought? It may have been something you didn’t realize until somebody brought it to your attention. Have you ever said, “Wow! I had no idea I did that all the time”? I’m here to tell you to stop it.

A good coach will tell you what you need to hear rather than what you want to hear. You need to hear this. When you are interviewing anyone on your show, stop talking. Ask the question, then get out of the way. Let your guest shine.

Here is an example. This is a recent question I heard during an interview.

Host: “Doesn’t money just really make you more of who you already were? It’s like money affords your personality to flourish, right? If you’re loving and generous and then you become wealthy, you’re going to be able to express more of that love and generosity to a greater degree. If you’re a jerk and you become wealthy, you’re just going to become become a colossal jerk. So, isn’t it really just an expansion of who you were at the core anyway? I mean, it’s not the money’s fault. It’s basically just a magnifier of it.”

Guest: “And it’s … that’s a good way of putting it. It just amplifies who you are, and makes it more apparent. It has a greater impact. Yeah, absolutely.”

This host kept talking to the point that he answered his own question. The guest had nothing left to say. The guest tried to paraphrase the same thing the host said, but couldn’t even make that happen. The host made his own point. The host’s question was seven sentences. The guest’s answer was basically, “Yeah.”

There are three points to remember when interviewing guests. If you keep these in mind, your guests will feel great about being on your show, and you will look like a brilliant host. Just stay out of your own way.

1. Know the Answer

Your job is to make your guest look great. You have invited your guest to your show to provide something you couldn’t provide alone. They have a story to tell. It is your job to help them tell it. Lead them to the punchline, climax or conclusion.

You need to do your homework prior to the interview. You need to know what makes your guest interesting. What will make your guest engaging to your audience? Find that story, and help your guest bring it to life.

The story will have a conclusion that you should already know. You’ve done your homework. You know what happens at the end. It is an art to help your guest tell that story without telling it yourself.

Prior to their appearance on the show, guests on The Late Show with David Letterman are interviewed ahead of time by a show producer. It is that producer’s job to find the interesting story. If the producer discovers the guest was recently stuck on a roller coaster during a family vacation, Dave will tee it up. He will help his guest shine by asking, “How’s the family? Have you had time to get away with them lately?” Suddenly, the guest is off and running telling the hilarious story of the roller coaster.

It looks like Dave got lucky. Dave just happened to stumble across a great vacation story. Reality is homework. Dave already knew what would make a great story. His homework (or that of his producer) revealed the gold. He simply helped his guest get there.

Our host above knew the answer to his question. It was obvious by the lengthy set up. Unfortunately, he proved it rather than letting his guest flourish. The host could have simply asked, “Doesn’t money just really make you more of who you already were?” The guest would have been off to the races. The guest could have really explored that theory. The host would have looked like he has great questions. The guest would have looked like he knows his stuff. Everybody wins. Instead, we get, “Yeah, exactly.”

Know the answer, so you can let your guest shine.

2. Be Brief

Make your questions brief. If you want to make your guests look great, you need to give them room to spread their wings. Short questions will allow that to happen.

Ask your short question, then stop talking. If you are talking, your guest is not. Your listeners have come to hear your guest. Let the guest talk. If your listeners have come to hear you, your guest isn’t necessary. Stop wasting everybody’s time.

Many hosts feel the need to prove how much they know. Hosts want to display all of their knowledge to impress the guest. Unfortunately, this is a myth. By showing how much you know, you are only trumping your guest. If you appear to be the most knowledgable person on the show, your guest will feel uncomfortable. You will soon find it hard to get guests.

When you ask brief questions that make it easy for your guest to tell great stories, your guest will look like a star. He will truly enjoy being part of your show. Your guests will want to return. Word will spread. Your show will grow. Finally, your audience will love the new information and engaging stories.

Everybody wins when you talk less.

3. No Yes/No

Ask open-ended questions. When you ask questions that can be answered with “yes” or “no”, some guests will take the opportunity to answer “yes” or “no”. Your interview will go nowhere.

Yes/no questions make it difficult for your guest to elaborate. When your guests tell stories, they become engaging. Stories are easy for your guest. Stories have natural flow. Elaborations take a lot of thought. Make it easy for your guest.

Our host above started with, “Doesn’t money just really make you more of who you already were?” All of a sudden he is faced with a yes/no question. He has forced his guest to elaborate. In order to help his guest, he continues with another yes/no question. In fact, he follows with two additional yes/no questions. Suddenly, his guest has nothing left to say.

The host knows that money simply makes you more of who you already are. He could have positioned his guest with, “How does money affect the core beliefs of an individual?” With that short question, the guest is now able to expound with his “more of who you already are” theory. The guest looks great. The host looks brilliant by somehow knowing that money affect the core of individuals. The listener gets to hear a great story.

Everybody wins when you stop talking.

It is your job to make your guest the star.

That is the reason you’ve invited her to your podcast. She offers something to the show that you cannot deliver as well by yourself. Let her do it. Lob that ball to your guest, so they can hit it out of the park. You don’t need to prove how well you can pitch. The goal is to let your guest hit home runs.

Make your guest look great. She will love you for it. Your listener will love you for it. You will learn to love yourself for it when your podcast begins to flourish.

Ask the question, then get out of the way. Please, stop talking.

5 Ways to Be a Super Hero Blogger


super hero blogger

Have you ever wanted to fly through the sky, jump over skyscrapers, swing from building to building or fight crime around the world? If so, it sounds like you wish you were a super hero!

Who wouldn’t want to be a super hero? Everyone loves them, they get movies made about them and are just so cool!

In the mean time you can settle for the next best thing… being a Super Hero Blogger!

Hey, it’s not all bad, bloggers have it pretty good too!

We get to:

  • schedule our own hours
  • write on whatever topics we like
  • reach a growing audience
  • build our businesses over time

All in all, it’s pretty cool to be a blogger and best of all, it doesn’t matter if you are just starting out or have been in the game for years. The blogging world is still young and there is still so much more room for growth. New bloggers are entering the online world every day and they love to look up to super hero bloggers to guide them along the way and to follow in their steps.

How to Be a Super Hero Blogger

So what makes some bloggers bigger and better than others? At the end of the day it’s the name recognition and how large of a following you have on your blog and on major social networks, but there is actually a lot more that goes into being a top blogger. I’ve taken a few of these concepts and related them with being a super hero.

  • Flight

Look, in the sky! It’s a bird… it’s a plane! No… it’s a social media marketing bloggers with over a hundred thousand followers on Twitter! In all seriousness, you might not be able to fly through the skies, but you can definitely propel your way past the competition and build a name for yourself as a top blogger!

Here are some more resources to help you with name recognition:

  • Invisibility

As cool as it would be to be invisible, being a successful blogger from home is almost the next best thing. A great way to think of blogging and the power of invisibility is to think about all of the business opportunities that you might see that the average person doesn’t.

You can find more tips about using your blog to get business opportunities here:

  • Fire

The Human Torch is one of the most well known super heroes for being able to fly when he lights himself on fire. Sometimes bloggers and online marketers find themselves in “the zone” and are on fire, burning with new ideas and passion to bring their business and sites to the next level!

Check out these posts to read more about passion and blogging:

  • Strength

It doesn’t matter how weak or strong you are in real life, what matter is how strong your will to succeed is. The world of internet marketing and blogging is tough, you need to have a strong backbone to continually fight against your latest failures to find your next success!

Here are a few posts about facing failures as a blogger:

  • Mind Reading

Imagine how much more we could accomplish if we could simply read minds? Even though we can’t, as bloggers and marketers we still have a talent for knowing what our audience is looking for and how to give it to them.

These resources can help you learn more about using your blog to learn about your audience

It’s time to take all of these ideas and super power dreams and put them into real life examples. Be sure to check out my How to be a Super Hero Marketer slide show and share it along with all of your friends.

What’s your favorite super hero power?

Image Credit: Altered, from Bigstock

Today’s the Last Day for NMX 2014 Super Early Bird Tickets!


keynote crowd at NMX

I feel incredibly lucky to be part of the NMX community. Some of my favorite people in the world are you guys and gals: they people I’ve met at NMX (and at BlogWorld before that). Every show feels like a warm-and-fuzzy family reunion to me, on top of being an amazing educational opportunity.

I hope you’ll be a part of this reunion in 2014. Super early bird ticket prices expire today, so whether this will be your first conference or you’re a regular, now’s the time to pick up your ticket.

It’s too early for us to have many details, but here’s what I can tell you:

  • The conference will be in Las Vegas on January 4-6, 2014.
  • We’re bringing back “speed networking,” which gives content creators the chance to network with business and make deals. This event at NMX 2013 was a huge success! It’s free to all attendees to take part, and we’d love to hear from you if your business wants to buy a table.
  • Want to attend sessions about building your business online? You need the All Access pass. This ticket also gives you access to food during the show (lunch and snacks) and our virtual ticket. If you’re not interested in business sessions and are prepared to hunt down your own lunch, the Content Creator pass for bloggers, podcasters, and web series/video producers is the right option for you.
  • If you’re interested in speaking, our submission form will open soon. Don’t let this stop you from buying a super early bird ticket, though. If you’re chosen to speak, you’ll receive a full refund on your ticket.
  • We are committed to making 2014 our best show ever! We’re taking all feedback and suggestions into consideration. It’s hard to please everybody and impossible to grant every wish, but we certainly try to listen to every voice. If you have feedback, do not hesitate to reach out to anyone on the NMX team if you have not done so already.
  • Like every year, our show will include not only educational sessions but also networking events so you can meet fellow attendees and an expo hall where you can learn about the latest tools and services to help you succeed online.

In the coming weeks and months, we’ll be releasing more details about our 2014 show, so stay tuned!

I hope that by announcing the dates and location as early as possible, it means you are able to save up to attend even if NMX was previously out of your reach. And if you’ve been to NMX before, I hope that announcing the dates and location this early makes your NMX planning even easier.

The first step is buying that ticket. Don’t miss out on the lowest prices available, which expire TODAY. Find out more and register now at NMXlive.com.

Questions before you buy? Concerns? Leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer quickly so you don’t miss today’s pricing deadline.

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