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Happy Halloween

Everyone have a safe day trick or treating and celebrating this fun day.

Five for Friday 10.30

Image: Meredith.com

I love short weeks, especially ones where there is a hockey game leading into the Friday off-day. Only problem with this short week is that a major real-world event is now less than a month away. While this post is being auto-posted and Tweeted, I will be sitting in the bowels of the building dubbed the ugliest in the world – Boston’s Government Center filing an application for my marriage license. Hopefully the process is not as bad as the one to get a drivers’ license. Hopefully your day is as fun filled and you can find enjoyment in this week’s Five for Friday.

Nine social media Halloween costume ideas – Let’s face it Halloween is tomorrow and chances are you have a costume laid out for your night of tricks and treats. However, if you are slow to the punch or just a procrastinator, here are some great costume ideas that came way via @jessisjuicy.

The most important blog post you’ll ever read – The title sums it up. While we’d all love to hold the title of owning said post, it doesn’t reflect the post but rather the way of thinking. Thanks to the guys over at New Marketing Labs for passing this along.

Seven patty Whopper challenge – I am all for buzz-based marketing – but something that can kill you for just eating – no thanks. I love burgers as much as the next man, but seven patties is a whole lot of meat. This will go down as a Burger King and Microsoft fail.

Twitter cluelessness – Great post over on the Open Network from Guy Kawasaki. While the post is geared towards the small business owner, it can also be applied to many folks just jumping on board the Twitterwagon. Note to those on the high horse – you aren’t a guru, expert or swami – get over yourself.

Two more reasons companies need to pay attention to social media – A lot is being written and discussed on disclosure and the importance of social media. This post points out two great notions and is worth giving a read.

This week’s #followfriday is sponsored by the letter B

Here’s a Trick or Treat video to take you into the weekend.

Cartoon of the day

Social media ROI

Anyone working with social media in some way shape or form has heard the simple phrase how do we measure ROI?  More times and not the person asking doesn’t have the clearest insight or idea of what you are doing all day. Things like can’t we hire an intern or outsource this stuff?

Instead of snickering, think of ways to measure success. It can be anything, from retweets and blog comments. There was an interesting post up on the PR Breakfast Club the other day on this very topic. While the end result of measuring the success lies company to company, here is a presentation that can help you lay out the groundwork.

You may also want to check out the SIM method suggested by Razorfish. How do you track the metrics?

Cartoon of the day

 

 

 

 

 

I always wondered what made lawyers drag their feet so much…

Cartoon of the day

Why do I have the feeling that every married man has heard this one time or another? Wonder how long it will be until the chide comes my way.

Pitching mom blogs

Yes this is my mom, and no she doesn't blog

Yes this is my mom, and no she doesn't blog

Who is a mom? Well let’s start with the fact that we all have/had one and know someone who shares the matron label from aunts, to wives, bosses, grandmas, girlfriends to that lady on the train. Aside from the most obvious bond that they all share, as the head of a family, they are also the most influential consumers.

Think back to your childhood – who initially dressed, fed and bathed you? Probably mom, she also did the weekend shopping while dad was mowing the lawn or watching football. So as we grew older, we trusted our mom’s judgment. Deny it as you might, but the ole lady’s opinion of your career, significant other and clothing. But enough about us.

So outside of influencing us into purchases, mothers built up perhaps one of the more powerful and trusted word of mouth networks. Think about it when the ladies hung out they discussed the best deals that they found around town as well as swapping recipes. These in turn led to sales.

Flash forward 20 some-odd years, instead of networking and discussing face to face with a close circle of friends, today’s moms have built elaborate networks through blogging. These bloggers called everything from lifestyle to mommy bloggers even have their own annual conference called BlogHer. With this growth so has their influence to consumers, which has led to a whole lot of companies looking for ways to gain exposure with these bloggers.

Truth is many PR folks know all about pitching reporters and bloggers. However, mommy bloggers shouldn’t be pitched like regular hacks and bloggers. Why you ask? Quite simply, these bloggers are moms first and are looking to share meaningful content with their community.

Looking back, communicating with these bloggers was my first foray into social media. Over the past year, my network has grown, and while I will never birth a child, the relationships built have given me an insight into what works. My network currently consists of about 35 moms with a good 10 that will help promote most of the initiatives that I am pushing. The catalyst for this post was actually birthed out of a conversation with Arik Hanson on some tips on the best way to pitch and approach mom bloggers to gain coverage for your company or client.

Aside from the usual, know your audience; consider the following tips to building up a mom blog network:

  • Check out this link ~ http://themomblogs.com/
  • Start the conversation on Twitter if possible and then work to the email
  • Avoid straight pitching, keep the draft mostly conversational
  • Work on the relationship
    • Chat and build up the relationship
  • When they offer insights into home life, comment on them
  • Be ready to give them free swag – make sure they are compliant for the FTC
    • NEVER offer to straight out pay for the pulse – its just insulting
  • Never bulk mail them – I know you wouldn’t but figured I would throw it out there
  • Read their content – helps showing that you care about the blog
  • Kill ‘em with kindness
  • Offer relevant news you’ve seen for parents, blog compliance, etc.

While these tips can help get everything lined up for building a network, it’s up to you to build the relationship like you would a reporter. I can also say that conversing with these mommies will get you some interesting tidbits on your network

For instance, I know about the illnesses of some of their kids, what it looks like to get a nose piercing and also the inner workings of a family of firefighters.

I know what you are wondering – how can I track success?

Here are a few pointers to tracking and providing relevant success on these types of outreaches:

  1. Use a trackable discount link for each blogger
  2. Run a contest – count entry count
  3. Count the number of comments
  4. Retweets – most of these mom sites are more classy than this blog, so you can count the number of Facebook posts and Tweets from a site like TweetMeme
  5. Reposts or links to the contest
  6. Look for spikes in your monitoring using a tool like Radian6
  7. If you are still using view count, check out the blog on Compete

Are there some methods that you partake in that I may have forgotten? Would love to swap some stories.

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