Tuesday, September 1, 2015

blab platformI’ve written before about live-streaming apps Meerkat and Periscope and I co-hosted the FridayHangout for over 90 episodes, but for me there’s a new show in town and it’s so much better for my business and brand promotion that I’m rarely using those other networks. Blab.im blows them away.

Hangouts can be clunky for new users and 10 people in the hangout at once generally too many to have a deep conversation. Switching between users allows only one person to be seen at once in the broadcast, so you lose some of the responses from others in the group. Streaming right into Youtube is nice, to be sure, but I’ll give it up for downloading the stream from Blab or embedding it into my website.

Meerkat and Periscope are being used as broadcasting tools for the most part. Sure, there is conversation in the comment stream but frankly, in a buzy stream it can hard to respond and focus. Both apps allow some engagement with your Twitter following, and Meerkat also gives the option to connect to your Facebook account.

Blab.im resolves a lot of these issues

  • Up to 4 people can join in with the host and talk about whatever you like.
  • On the right of the page is a live chat stream with the viewers
  • The show can be recorded or live-only as the host chooses.
  • Shows can be scheduled or serendipitous on-the-fly
  • Want to get more people in Blab? Mention them in the comment stream with their username and they’ll be tagged with a notification.
  • Many show hosts bring on a main guest and then people jump on with questions and comments, then exit to leave the “seat” for the next person. This is a terriffic way to get real engagement and conversation with a large group.

I’m not going to even try to do a tutorial on this one yet. It’s still in beta and changing as we speak. Instead, check out this Google Doc via Ileane Smith. Ileane is quite the expert on Blab and I’ve joined her in quite a few Blabs of late. Follow here on Blab.im and you are sure to learn something.

What’s the big deal and why should you care?
Yeah, I know, yet another platform to learn. And I guarantee Blab.im will be a time suck because it’s like a TV show full of people on a wide variety of topics and I’ve been party to many great discussions. I set a timer to remind me to turn it off or I’d never stop listening and chatting!

This platform builds community super quickly. You can toss up a page and be Blabbing in a few minutes and if your topic is good you’ll attract people who are not only your existing connections but people from outside your regular circles. We tend to hangout with the people we know, but on this platform people interested in the same thing you are freely drop into discussions and the follow you there or on your other social networks. I’ve seen a substantial increase in followers on Twitter and Linkedin this month and I’ve only been using the site for a couple of weeks.

Bottom line
If your goal on social media is to reach an audience that is really interested in similar topics, Blab will boost your following with real organic connections. After a Blab go connect and comment on their posts. Thank them for comments and being on your show. This is a close as you can get to face to face communication with people from around the world. I suggest you give it a try.


Twitter analyticsTwitter has been slowly improving their analytics features for profiles and ads and it’s been very interesting to see. It used to be we had to dig through other reporting tools to really see what is working and what isn’t and gather reporting data for clients. No more!

The new analytics dashboard shares top tweets, mentions, Twitter cards and followers on a month by month basis. To find yours, go to Twitter and log in, then click analytics on the drop-down menu under your profile, or just got to analytics.twitter.com. If, like me, you manage multiple ad accounts you’ll be able to easily switch accounts and see the analytics for the ones you have access to.

Click the “Tweet activity” button on an individual tweet to get specific data for that tweet. See how many views and engagements you’ve had with a tweet including retweets on a handy chart and even download the metrics in a CSV file.
Thank you Twitter!

Twitter cards
One thing I see immediately from my analytics is that I’m not using Twitter cards enough. These things are effective! Thre are several types of Twitter cards from the basic “summary” card with your title, description and thumbnail, to player cards to include video and audio clips. I am planning on re-downloading the Twitter cards getting started bundle and re-evaluating how I use these tools going forward.

Twitter Cards

If you are marketing an app be sure to look under the tools menu to manage your app promotion, learn more about the App card ads to target your ads for better conversions.

The events tab is little used right now but still it’s interesting to see what events people are posting. If you’d like to post an event you’ll need to reach out to your Twitter account manager.

When you are using Twitter’s promoted tweets to drive traffic to your website you can use the conversion tracking option to drop a snippet of code into your website and more accurately track conversions coming from Twitter.

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content marketing with employeesI have long held that corporations often overlook the most valuable source of marketing content–their own employees. Why is this? Well, if you’re old school it may be because you’re afraid to let staff speak on behalf of the company because they might make mis-statements or damage the brand. Marketing, PR and Legal all conspire to restrict access to marketing channels to control the messaging. It’s not just greedily holding their cards to their chest though, there are legitimate reasons to manage the flow of messaging but there are better ways to do it!

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