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Essential Tips on Content and Community From the New Media Rat Pack


Are you excited? NMX is coming up fast and there’s a lot to get excited about. For me, the Las Vegas edition of NMX brings back many fond memories of connecting with peers from a mix of industries and expertise. From brands to soloprenuers and marketers to public relations professionals, all have the same areas of focus in common: content and community.

When you look at Las Vegas history, the 1960’s holds some great memories too. Few exemplify the energy and excitement of the playground that is Las Vegas more than the Rat Pack. Fans would pour into the city of lights from all over the country to hear the likes of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, Jr., Joey Bishop, and Peter Lawford perform.

The New Media Rat Pack

For a few days in January, thousands of people will converge at the Rio to learn about every aspect of new media publishing and community building that you can imagine from what I’d like to call, “The New Media Rat Pack.”  From branding to legal to online TV to content marketing, some of the world’s top experts will be singing their songs of advice about how to be successful in today’s new media world.

To help you tap into the fun and infotainment to be experienced at NMX, MarketingBlog.com has partnered with NMX to create a Visual eBook with tips, tactics and smart advice from an impressive mix of NMX speakers. With practical tips from their presentations, this eBook has been designed to highlight what NMX has to offer.

Download the ebook now.

To help you decide what sessions will be “hot” and where the action is, here’s a bit of a preview from each chapter of The New Media Rat Pack: 52 Tips On Content and Community From the Experts of NMX.

Branding – The Perception of Your Brand Drives Sales

In the age of hyperconnected consumers, branding is more important now than ever. Twenty or even ten years ago, had you ever heard of a brand advocate? Your company has the opportunity to become recognizable, popular, and even loved among social fans and customers. Michael Brito of Edelman who is presenting, ” The New Influencers: Brand Advocacy Inside & Out” offers this advice:

“Brands must do more than just “empower” their brand advocates. They must “enable” them by creating specific programs that encompass content, measurement, longevity of the program; and more importantly, how their content can feed into the overall marketing strategy.”

Blogging – A Quantity of Quality is the Key to Blogging Success

Recent industry surveys show 92% of companies who blog several times per day have acquired a customer from their blog, yet 65% of business blogs haven’t been updated in a year or more. It’s important to take an optimized approach to blogging. Who are your readers? What are they looking for when they visit your blog and are you successful in fulfilling that need?  Patrice Yursik of Afrobella will be presenting, “How To Actually Grow A BIG Brand & Community With Just A Simple Blog” and offers this advice:

“Follow your passion and create an online platform that’s genuinely reflective of yourself, your interests and your beliefs. That will ensure that you never lose that passion for your subject matter, and that your readers will respond to you in a similar fashion. Staying true to yourself always pays off in the long run.”

Social Media –  Positive Social Exposure Affects Consumer’s Overall Satisfaction

A recent survey of tech buyers found that a whopping 95% use at least one social media site and that exposure to a product on that site had a positive effect on their likelihood to purchase among 44%.  Social media is helping brands build trust, loyalty and brand recognition, among other measurable benefits. Ninety-two percent of global consumers say they trust earned media above all other forms of advertising. Jay Baer of  Convince & Convert will be talking about the importance for brands to be useful through social channels in his presentation: “Youtility: Why Smart Companies Focus on Helping, Not Selling.” His advice:

“Change your marketing objective from selling to helping. If you sell something, you make a customer today. If you help someone, you may create a customer for life. Try to make your marketing so useful people would theoretically pay for it. If you make your marketing astoundingly useful – your customers will do your promotional work for you.”

New Media Law –  Even A Small Legal Blunder Can End Up In the Headlines

Media law may not seem a pressing concern in everyday business at the typical organization. Yet every so often, a legal blunder in the online space makes headlines. How can you protect your company from litigation and prevent missteps outside the law in regards to labor and employment, intellectual property rights, securities and consumer privacy? Art Neill of New Media Rights will help clarify legal questions as they related to social and digital media with his presentation, “Legal Ease – What You Should Know to Stay on the Right Side of the Law.” While it’s not exactly legal advice, Art offers these smart insights:

“Having a working knowledge of copyright when sharing video on the internet is important.  The chance you’ll actually be sued for an isolated infringing video on the internet is low, but getting your video taken down can have all kinds of other consequences. You could get an account strike.  Account strikes may prevent that person from becoming a YouTube partner, for instance. Two or three strikes can get an account completely banned, erasing the time and money you’ve spent, and the goodwill created by your channel. Knowing your rights can keep you creating rather than wrapped up in legal disputes.”

Mobile –  How Can Your Business Get Ahead of Consumers Who Are Already Constantly on the Go?

In 2009, comScore told us the number of people who used their cell phone daily had doubled over 2008, to 22.4 million U.S. adults. At the time, downloadable maps were the most popular application.

Fast forward to today. Mobile phones have become smarter and consumers hungrier for information to help them make better buying decisions. Tablets are all the rage. Now, consumers are moving away from PCs in favor of more powerful, portable mobile devices as their default gateway to the Internet.  Brian Wong of Kiip will be discussing “The Art of Mobile Business” and offers this perspective on the value of mobile:

“The intimacy of the mobile device can help you build closer relationships with consumers by creating a connection that is less interruptive and more personal than ever before.”

Content Marketing – Investment In and Expectations From Killer Content Marketing Is On the Rise

Ninety-two percent of U.S. adults read content online, spending more than seven hours per week looking for content.  A viable content marketing strategy means more than creating a greater volume of content, or even publishing a regular schedule of content.  Ann Handley of MarketingProfs, who is presenting as part of the BusinessNext conference, collocated with NMX, shares this advice on content marketing:

Give your content wings and roots. Focus not on just creating content. Instead, focus on creating content that’s worth sharing. The best content marketers involve their customers at a fundamental level, by putting their customers at the heart of their larger story, and allowing them to share it, all across the social web.

Video – Optimize Your Video Strategy For Fan Preferences

Over the past year, there has been a 38% increase in the amount of people accessing video online and a 34% increase in accessing video on smartphones. Video consumption on tablets has already exceeded smartphone viewing, and consumers are using their devices simultaneously; 85% of tablet viewers have been on their tablet while watching TV.  Annunziata Gianzero of Ivy Media Group will be presenting, “Acting Up! How To Do Your Best Work For Any Screen.” She offers this perspective:

“Even though it feels like everybody and his brother are making web series, there really is a core community you should join in order to network and enhance your visibility.  They are a supportive and creative group and essential to sustaining a career in the web series world.”

Podcasting – Make the Most of Your Audience’s Time

Podcasting is a fantastic opportunity for companies and individuals to establish expertise, build their brand and influence consumers through portable audio content they can digest on their own time. Jason Cabassi, from The Walking Dead ‘Cast is presenting “Tips and Techniques For Building a Successful Fan Podcast “ and offers this basic, yet important tip:

“When you first get started, act as if you already have the audience you want, in size and character. Be persistent with it and you’ll draw them to you.”

Websites –  A Great Website Design Must Cater to the Needs of the User

Website design concerns have increasingly moved to mobile, as more customers are researching and shopping on the go. However, the desktop experience can’t be overlooked or left behind. Design is not only about design elements or outward appearances; usability, ease of navigation and function are all top priorities for a corporate or e-commerce website.  Mitch Canter of Studio Nash Vegas will present, “Advanced Blog Design: The Latest Tools, Trends & Best Practices You Can Implement Today” and has this to say about responsive web design:

“If there’s any design “trend” that you should focus on, then make sure your site is “responsive” to a mobile device.  Mobile devices aren’t going anywhere, and it’s up to content creators to give users the best experience for viewing their content.”

As you can see, NMX has a LOT to offer. Hopefully these speakers’ tips will help get you into the goove of New Media Expo, Vegas style. I’ll leave you with a few tips that will be helpful no matter what situation you’re in with new media:

  1. Align your customer and business goals for measureable online marketing objectives.
  2. Determine which online marketing tactics you want to implement or refine in 2013.
  3. Give yourself time to implement new tactics in a way that will have the highest impact on your business objectives.
  4. Identify thought leaders and key influencers within your industry that you can learn from, and engage with.
Don’t forget to check out my own session on January 8th, at noon:  “War of Words: Myth-Busting Social, SEO & Content” where I’ll be sharing the full New Media Rat Pack: 52 Tips On Content and Community From the Experts of NMX Visual eBook including additional tips from Robert Scoble, Guy Kawasaki and myself.

Free Gift: The Power of Everything by Jay Baer [12 Days of Giveaways]


A free gift from NMX Speaker Jay Baer: The Power of Everything

Here at NMX, planning for our January event is in full swing…but that doesn’t mean we don’t have time for the holidays! That’s why, every day from now through December 25, we’re featuring a brand new giveaway for the entire NMX community!

Jay Baer’s brand new ebook, The Power of Everything features advice from some of the greatest minds in social media and content marketing. Here’s just a taste of what you’ll find inside:

  • The Power of Awesome by Scott Stratten
  • The Power of Storytelling by Ann Handley
  • The Power of Mobile by Tim Hayden
  • The Power of Authenticity by Jason Falls
  • The Power of a Question by Tom Weber

Along with many others, these authors teach you about living a more powerful life and building a more powerful online business. You don’t want to miss this one!

Like all of our 12 Days of Giveaways gifts, Jay’s new ebook is completely free for members of our brand new community, NMX University. (Don’t worry – membership there is also free!) You can download the free PDF for a limited time!

Find out more about this ebook and register for NMXU here, of if you are already a member, simply log in to NMXU here to download your free copy today!

Free Gift: The Ultimate Guide to Using Links to Build Relationships & Drive Traffic [12 Days of Giveaways]


Introducing the latest in NMX’s line of ebooks: The Ultimate Guide to Using Links to Build Relationships and Drive Traffic.

Here at NMX, planning for our January event is in full swing…but that doesn’t mean we don’t have time for the holidays! That’s why, every day from now through December 25, we’re featuring a brand new giveaway for the entire NMX community!

Today, to start off the 12 Days of Giveaways, we have a real treat – a brand new ebook! If you’re a blogger, this is one you definitely don’t want to miss. The Ultimate Guide to Using Links to Build Relationships and Drive Traffic is a comprehensive resource that will teach you how to:

  • Make your content better by using both internal and external links
  • Drive massive traffic with link resources that go viral
  • Attract the attention of a-list bloggers in your niche with links
  • Keep readers coming back for more with link opportunities for your entire community
  • Ensure readers stay on your site longer through related links

Best of all, The Ultimate Guide to Using Links to Build Relationship and Drive Traffic is completely free for members of our brand new community, NMX University. (Don’t worry – membership to that is also free!)

You can find out more about our ebook and register for NMXU here, or if you are already a member, simply log in to NMXU here to download your free copy today!

How to Make Your Free Ebook More Valuable


The problem with free ebooks is that everybody has one. Even when you create high-quality content that you could easily sell, it can be hard to entice readers to download it if they already have ten other recently downloaded ebooks just waiting to be read. So, while it’s important to write an ebook that people want to read, you can also go one step further and make your ebook even more valuable with supplemental content and special features.

I’ve written several ebooks, including The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Your Blog, Podcast, and Videos with Pinterest and The Ultimate Guide to Blog and Podcast Sponsorship for NMX and numerous other ebooks for my own websites and for clients. Let’s take a look at what I’ve learned about making free ebooks more valuable.

Video is Hot

Not everyone has the time (or makes the time) to read a 100-page ebook, even if the information is extremely valuable. Some people instead prefer video (or audio), and since fewer people are creating video resources, you can really stand out from the crowd by creating them. A good example is this video series about podcast sponsorship we created in conjunction with our ebook about sponsorship.

If you aren’t comfortable being on camera, consider creating a video using this scribing technique or even a simple voice over. You can also make use of video others have put online by finding videos related to your topic and compiling them into one playlist. You have less content control this way, but it’s an option that allows you to present video without actually creating video yourself.

Check It Off Your List

People like to be able to take action after reading an ebook or guide, so giving your readers a way to easily do that is a great added resource to your ebook. This can be in the form of a checklist or workbook. You’ll want to make them easily printable, leaving space for your readers to write if they’d like to do so.

The point is to give your readers guidance with really actionable steps that they can check off their lists so they’re implementing what you talked about in your ebook. This doesn’t necessarily have to be in the form of a printable. Another example is this five-part Pinterest series that outlines specific steps to take over the course of five days.

Follow Up with GOOD Paid Products

The point of any free product for your readers is to follow it up with something that benefits you, like a paid product. However, if you’re going to follow up the gift with a hard sell, make sure your paid product makes sense. I don’t want to download your ebook about email marketing and then have you try to sell me an ebook about editing podcasts. Those two things aren’t really related. Instead, if you get me to download your ebook about email marketing, follow it up with a paid e-course that goes into further detail about the topic. That’s something that I’ll be more willing to buy if I enjoyed your free ebook.

Self-Published Author Joins ‘Kindle Million Club’


John Locke has reportedly become the first self-published author to hit the Kindle Million Club – selling over 1 million Kindle books. Locke is the eight author to receive the distinction, joining Stieg Larsson, James Patterson, Nora Roberts, Charlaine Harris, Lee Child, Suzanne Collins and Michael Connelly.

Russ Grandinetti, Vice President of Kindle Content, says in a press release, “It’s so exciting that self-publishing has allowed John Locke to achieve a milestone like this. We’re happy to see Kindle Direct Publishing succeeding for both authors and customers and are proud to welcome him to the Kindle Million Club.

Locke himself says that Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) has provided an opportunity for independent authors to compete with the rest of the book selling agency. Not only did KDP give me a chance, they helped at every turn. Quite simply, KDP is the greatest friend an author can have.

Locke attributes his success to his $0.99 eBook sales model, having said, “I saw that a self-published book could be offered on Kindle for 99 cents, and still turn a 35 cent profit. I was stunned! I walked around in a daze for, well, days, trying to explain to people what that meant.

He is now the internationally bestselling author of nine novels including “Vegas Moon,” “Wish List,” “A Girl Like You,” “Follow the Stone,” “Don’t Poke the Bear!” and the New York Times bestselling eBook, “Saving Rachel.” Locke is also the author of the marketing book for self-published authors: “How I Sold 1 Million eBooks in 5 Months.”

Free Ebook Featuring 100+ Bloggers!


I promised it to you – and here it is: The 12 Days of Blogging 2010 in ebook format. During the 12 Days of Blogging series, I featured over 100 bloggers who gave us advice on everything from writing posts to time management to recording podcasts. There’s a little something for everyone in this series! Learn from some of the Internet’s favorite bloggers such as:

  • Chris Brogan
  • John Chow
  • Darren Rowse
  • Chris Garrett
  • Scott Stratten
  • Brian Solis

But also meet rising stars in the blogging world and people from outside the make-money-blogging niche such as:

  • Annabel Candy
  • Srini Rao
  • Catherine Caine
  • Adam Baker
  • Ann Smarty
  • Marian Schembari

And way, way, way too many others to list!

Of course, most of you were probably super busy during the holidays, so instead of having to go back and find the links you want, you can just download this ebook and have the entire things at your fingertips, whenever you want it.

The 12 Days of Blogging is completely free – no email address required, no cost, no restrictions. All I ask is that if you enjoyed this series, please pass it on so that others can enjoy it too – hit the retweet button, “like” this post on Facebook, write a blog post about it, send it out to your mailing list, or just tell a friend as you’re chatting over coffee. If you know someone who might benefit from this ebook, pass it on, keeping the spirit of community alive and well.

It won’t be perfect. A compilation this huge never is. In my hurry to get it to you as soon as humanly possible, I’m sure there are some Is left undotted and some Ts left uncrossed. I hope you find it valuable regardless – I know that I’ve found it extremely valuable to read posts from some of the best bloggers in the world.

Thank you so much for being a part of the BlogWorld community in 2010. I can’t wait to see what you all do in the coming year, and I hope I’ll get to meet you in person this fall at BlogWorld Expo 2011!

Click Here to Download 12 Days of Blogging Now!

(This is a pdf document that you can download directly to your computer. If it opens for you in Scribd, click on the first arrow on the task bar at the upper right-hand corner, which says “open in new window” when you hover over it. From that screen, you can save or print like normal. Or, you can view fullscreen to read the ebook online if you don’t want to download it to your computer!)

And a Partridge in a Pear Tree


A partridge. A pear tree. These two seemingly random items have become as synonymous with the holidays as Christmas trees and Santa. Well almost. Nothing beats Santa.

I decided to do a little research to find out exactly why these gifts were chosen, since they don’t exactly scream romance. What I’ve found is that there was an old tradition where a  young girl should walk backward around a pear tree three times and then gaze into the branches. There, she would see her true love and future husband. In Europe, partridges commonly sat in fruit trees, so combined with their symbolism of fertility (they apparently breed like rabbits), this is a pretty romantic gift choice after all. A gift like that would go to someone you completely adore.

Of course, with any tradition, there are other possible meanings behind “partridge in a pear tree” – but that’s the one I like best!

Anyway, to me, this is a fitting way to end the 12 Days of Blogging. Today, like many of you, I’m sure, I spent the day celebrating with my family. While I did grow up Christian, for us, the day is not so much religious as it is a day where we celebrate one another. In fact, we have this silly and wonderful Christmas tradition where someone in the family gets a gold star necklace, then the next year they pick who gets the necklace (usually for an accomplishment, such as graduating high school or surviving a heart attack or getting a promotion), and then that persons picks the recipient the next year so on and so on – it just keeps getting passed around the family. Christmas is a day for us to spend time together as a family and be thankful we have one another.

As I was opening gifts and eating waaaaay too many Christmas cookies, my phone kept chirping from Twitter DMs and pinging because I was getting new emails and text messages. I realized something; you all are my family too.

I have met the most amazing, understanding, supportive, friendly, giving people through blogging and social media. Some of you, I’ve only met in real life once or twice – or not at all. But you have become my family.

And isn’t that really what blogging is all about? Sure, we can talk about post writing and SEO and podcasting and everything else I’ve covered in the 12 Days of Blogging…but why do we do what we do? There are certainly easier ways to make money. There are certainly many avenues for getting our voices heard. Why do we choose blogging?

I think for most of us, it is the community. When I look into the branches of the virtual pear tree, I see all of your avatars smiling back at me. Blogging and connecting through new media gives me this awesome family living around the world. This network, this community, this is why I do what I do. Both here and at After Graduation, connecting with readers, one person at a time, has meant the world to me.

To show my appreciation, I’d like to give you a partridge in a pear tree. No, I’m not sending fruit and pheasants your way. This week, I’ll be releasing A Partridge in a Pear Tree: The 12 Days of Blogging 2010 right here on the BlogWorld blog. This will be a complete compilation of the 12 Days of Blogging, from 12 Writers Writing to 2 Ethics Debates. That way, if you missed a day or two or didn’t have time for the series at all, you can download the ebook and read it at your leisure without clicking around to all the links.

A Partridge in a Pear Tree will be completely free with no email sign-up necessary. BlogWorld isn’t paying me to do this, nor will I be accepting donations (some people have actually emailed me to ask about that – y’all are super flattering!!). I just want to make it available to you, if you want it, as a holiday gift with no strings attached.

The ebook will be ready this coming week, before New Years, so check back to grab your copy! If you’re worried about remembering, follow me on Twitter (@allison_boyer) – I’ll be tweeting about it as soon as it is released. You can also subscribe to the BlogWorld RSS feed or newsletter, of course, to receive a reminder!

Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for reading here at BlogWorld and on After Graduation. Thank you for all the retweets, all the Facebook likes, all the comments. Thank you for coming to BlogWorld Expo and meeting me, the amazing BlogWorld staff, and one another. Thank you for submitting speaker proposals. Thank you for helping mold this industry into something amazing. Thank you.

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