Don’t loose your precious digital memories

Photographic memories have always been precious, and like the printed versions digital photographs are at risk from fire or other losses. If you have only saved your digital photographs on a local drive, then if this drive fails you could quickly loose images that can never be replaced.

Backing up your digital photographs is the best way to make sure those moments in time are kept whatever happens. Watch this video where I tell you the best ways to make sure your digital memories are kept secure.

Measuring social media measurement

With the number of social media users projected to reach 2.5 billion by 2018 I would hope by now that even the most ardent social media denialists will be able to accept that social media is not going anywhere soon.

Businesses extensively use social media as part of their activities including for customer service, where efficiencies and savings can easily be demonstrated; and for marketing where both paid and earnt activities can have a huge impact on the reach of a campaign.

Despite the use of social media by businesses maturing, still many struggle to measure the impact of their social media. They struggle because often it is difficult to accurately attribute the benefits of particular activities, especially where you have activities across a number of mediums. It is easy to count the number of followers, retweets, post likes etc actual impact on the bottom line that you can directly attribute to social media is harder and sometimes impossible to record accurately.

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If you are experiencing the challenge of measuring the impact of social media on your business, as you can see from this survey by the CMO you are not alone. However as the share of marketing spent on social media increases the need to measure becomes even more important.

Important things to look at when measuring social media:

  • Put measurement in from the start of your campaign, not an afterthought
  • Agree what you are measuring against – what good looks like – otherwise the social media denialists will move the goalposts
  • Accept somethings cannot be measured accurately and see these as indicative measures
  • Attribute indirect influence by measuring trends over time
  • Keep it simple – by attempting to measure too much you will end up measuring nothing

Finally social media can be of huge benefits to your marketing activities, however where it cannot provide the measurement you would like to see – ask yourself if your other activities could provide that information before dismissing using social media for that purpose.

Holocaust Memorial Day 2016

January 27th is Holocaust Memorial Day.

To mark this day I will be featuring tweets throughout the day @Wellbelove that I hope will serve as a reminder not only of the horrors from this terrible part of our history, but of the importance of not standing by today in the face of modern day prejudice and hate.

A quarter of people in Britain have witnessed at least one hate crime or hate incident based on race or ethnicity in the last year. We have seen shameless prejudice against minorities by senior politicians and selfish ignorance of the plight of refugees. Far right groups continue to exploit fear and ignorance. Memories of the terrible consequences of this cocktail of hate seem to be fading in some circles.Holocaust

Whilst others suffer we must not stand by. As we now judge those from the past who did not do enough – others will sit in judgement of our own actions in response to the suffering we see today.

On 11 December 1946 the General Assembly of the United Nations resolved that genocide was a crime under international law. Millions have died since, as a result of genocide crimes. Millions more will die.

Don’t stand by.

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Stop making excuses – the real reason you are not on social media

The most frequent reason I am given on why professionals do not use social media is ‘I don’t have time’.

By contrast despite incredibly busy live the likes of Sir Richard Branson, Stephen FryEllen DeGeneres, Lady GaGa, Katy Perry, Scott Monty from Ford, Ralph Lauren, many senior politicians including President Obama and other notable ‘busy’ people can find time to fill 140 characters or more and post to social profiles.

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Admitidly some have assistants that help them, tmany of the names I have chosen directly post regularly themselves and have identified the benefits that social media can bring. So how can they find time when you cannot? Why have they made it a priority? Why do they think it is a worthwhile part of their daily routine – whilst you do not?

Some of the other reasons I am given include…

– People won’t be interested in what I had for breakfast
– Can’t see the point
– It’s just a fad (do not hear this as much anymore)
– I’m a very private person
– I am worried I might say something wrong
– I might be attacked

People may not be interested in what you had for breakfast, though the occasional post that shows you are a real rounded human being can do no harm. Social networks are not just about one thing and people are interested by a wide variety of things. The great thing about social media is the audience decides if it is interested or not, and you will soon see what engages people – so do not pre-judge what they will or won’t like..

Social media is now an extension of how we interact as human beings both in private and in the work place. If you do not see the point then you are effectively saying you are not interested in those who use social media both within your current circle of influence, and beyond through the ripple effect and wider realm of influence social media provides.

I totally understand people being cautious. However often people who tell me ‘they might say something wrong’ are professionals at the top of their game, who fully know understand what they can and cannot say as either a politician or business person in the public domain. After all they filter what they say everyday. A brief Google search will bring back nightmare examples of people doing stupid things on social media – but they are exactly that – stupid – and you should trust yourself to be able to make the right decisions about what you post. The fact you are concerned means you are less likely to post something you shouldn’t, and if you can’t be trusted it’s not just social media you should be worried about.

Yes you might be attacked. But does it really matter? I remember when I first posted some tech tip videos there were several nasty comments include one saying that I had funny eyebrows. Would have prefered that he had said something about the video to help me improve my presenting style, and was interesting he himself had an unique style of hair growth above his eyes – but it did not really matter and was nothing more than name calling in the playground. There are tools you can use to mute out some of the unconstructive comments, however the biggest challenge I have found is to get people to engage at all. Maybe they are not saying anything as they are worried too.

The biggest barrier to your effective use of social media is you and sometimes something as simple as your first post. If you are worried you may something wrong then say nothing at all and share something you find interesting which comes from someone else. Over time as you get to understand the community that you will become part of you will learn the unspoken rules which are mostly common sense.

Social media offers so many opportunities. I have learnt however for those who have multiple reasons for not taking part, and as you answer these concerns come up with even more, until they are willing to try it nothing I can say will change their mind. But until that time please admit the real reason you are not on social media – is you.

It’s not your fault your password is rubbish

In a now annual event, the media mocks us for using passwords that are criminally easy to guess. Despite this we continue to ignore the warnings and choose simple passwords but to be honest it is not our fault.

Why? Well online services both make it too easy to allow us to choose a common password, they could easily block these after all, and too hard by varying rules for what you have to use ie: including a capital or not from service to service.

Other reasons we pick rubbish passwords:

  • It’s too hard to remember a different password for every service
  • It doesn’t seem to be that important – until we are hacked
  • We fear forgetting them so try and pick something easy to remember

One policy that really annoys me is organisations who insist you change your password periodically. This often forces people to choose something even simpler as they know they will have to come up with something new in a month or so. It would be far better to encourage people to create a complex password they can stick with unless it becomes compromised.

I created this video for BT to help guide you on how to create a more secure password that is easy to remember, the formula for doing this is thanks to advice from presenter Leo Laporte.

Truth to be told, the only way this problem will be fixed is via biometric passwords and behavioural monitoring. As with the latest iPads and iPhones you will in the future be able to login via your finger or other biologically unique feature. Additionally behavioural monitoring will be able to add an extra layer of protection, learning about elements of how you use devices then requesting extra verification when these behaviours change.

Oh, and the most common passwords for 2015 are (with change on 2014 in brackets)

1) 123456 (unchanged)

2) password (unchanged)

3) 12345678 (up 1)

4) qwerty (up 1)

5) 12345 (down 2)

6) 123456789 (unchanged)

7) football (up 3)

8) 1234 (down 1)

9) 1234567 (up 2)

10) baseball (down 2)

11) welcome (new)

12) 1234567890 (new)

13) abc123 (up 1)

14) 111111 (up 1)

15) 1qaz2wsx (new)

16) dragon (down 7)

17) master (up 2)

18) monkey (down 6)

19) letmein (down 6)

20) login (new)

21) princess (new)

22) qwertyuiop (new)

23) solo (new)

24) passw0rd (new)

25) starwars (new)

 

 

Dead again… on social media

A new phenomenon is growing on social media. Alongside an increase in the number of people commenting on sad deaths of celebrities, many are taking to their favourite social channel to lament the death of others who died months a long time ago.

dead againIt seems in an age where news can be old news in the tweet of an eye, our recollection over who has already passed on is fading just as fast. This is not helped by online publications featuring popular related stories which can result in articles from several years ago rising to the top .

Another factor that is resulting in people seemingly dying more than once, is how many of us do not really read what we see online. Many share without ever checking out the original article let alone looking to see when it was originally posted.

From my own posts on Twitter I often see where more people have shared an article that I have linked to than those who have clicked to view it.

One of the latest celebrities to die again is comic actor Leslie Nielsen. Whilst it could be upsetting for his family and friends to see him ‘die again’ across social channels – I can only think that he may find the fact he has re-died some 6 years later a tad amusing.

Digital Marketing is dead, Long live Digital Marketing

A Gartner survey has shown that the term “digital marketing” is on the wane. The report showed that many CMO’s are “done” with the term with 98% of marketers no longer making a clear distinction between marketing online and offline.

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This is a welcome development, seeing full integration of digital marketing into the mainstream and end an era where digital was often an afterthought or totally ignored.

The integration of digital marketing into the mainstream demands that many marketers upskill. For many marketers who studied marketing before Facebook were a glint in Mark Zuckerberg’s eye, this is a real challenge.

In some sectors there is a digital skill shortage in the marketing profession. Over the years I have met many marketers who struggle with the basics let alone what I call the ‘social media denialists’, those who continue to dismiss the value of social media as a marketing discipline.

As with any trade it is essential that marketers keep up-to-date with the latest developments in their chosen field. In marketing, arguably keeping up is not enough and you need to be ahead to have an edge on the competition and to maximise the potential of new developments.

The Gartner survey shows the industry pointing in the right direction, it’s a warning to those marketers who have had their heads in the sand and can no longer ignore digital’s permanent place as a core marketing discipline.