How can I manage all of my social networks?

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By Brendan Fitzpatick

Google

manage_socialnetwork_flattened Nowadays it is common for individuals as well as businesses to have multiple accounts for social networking. Why? Many social networking sites have niche purposes with their own user population with tremendous business value (refer to my ‘Do I need to socialize my business…’ article). Many of the popular networks have the ability to submit your post to other networks with a link back to the original posting. This is a great feature but what if you don’t want to link back to your posting? Perhaps you want to link to your website or directly to a video on YouTube or to your storefront.

There are many ways to manage your social networks, some better or worse than others. I will define my criteria and discuss the option that I found works best for my situation. I will also briefly touch on other options along the way to give you insight to other options that might fit your requirements. My experience and the purpose of this  article is intended for personal as well as business use cases.

When I first started socializing my website I knew that I wanted to try a diverse set of networks including  some of the most common so that I could understand which ones work best for my situation. I chose to go with Google+, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr accounts – I also started a WordPress blog but I’m excluding Wordpress from this article for simplicity purposes. As far as managing these networks I quickly realized how difficult it would be without a central tool so I spent some time on finding a solution before I moved forward because I knew that my social experience for my business wouldn’t last long as it would be too difficult to manage. Imagine having to Login to each account, uploading images, copying and pasting text and reviewing everything for each network?

After minimal research I found and experimented with the WordPress publicize feature which I found fascinating but it still linked the content back to my WordPress account – remember, what I wanted was a central facility to post any content that could link to wherever I wanted (particularly, back to my web site) so this did not work for me. Similarly I experimented with Google+ to Facebook, Facebook to Twitter and all combinations that I could come up with but they all behaved the same.. looking back it makes sense, why would any social network want you to be able to promote your web site on another web site using their tools when they can embed your entire post with a link back to themselves before your users reach the destination where you want them to end up? They’re effectively maximizing traffic back to them, fair enough – no argument from me.

 After a little more research I came across ‘IF This Then That’ aka ifttt.com and I immediately knew that I found something special. Unfortunately my initial testing started yielding the same results. I was convinced that a tool must exist out there that would meet my basic criteria and something crossed my mind that certainly such a tool must exist as a mobile application. I was convinced that ifttt.com could achieve what I was looking for but it was starting to get complicated to configure all of my accounts in this 3rd party tool (privacy concerns, now IFTTT would have access to my accounts and content) so I put is aside for the time being as a potential solution so I could explore other options.

After a little more research I came across a few mobile applications so I started looking at their ratings (to determine which ones were legit) and reading their descriptions and I finally found Everypost. I immediately asked myself, ‘could this be it?’.. a tool that could simplify my social networking experience while expanding it a the same time?

 

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At this point I had gotten frustrated enough to refine my requirements. I needed a simple tool that I could create a post, add an image and a few tags with the ability to submit and post all of my social networks without having to login to each, reformat content, upload images etc.

After 2 minutes (of downloading, installing and configuring my first site using this tool I quickly realized that this was it! It took me more time to learn the details of each social network than it took to figure out how to post to all of them from the Everypost application.

I’m sure there are other tools out there that compete with Everypost, it just happened to be the first tool that I found that enabled me to manage my sites centrally after a good amount of testing of other solutions which I believe to a large extent have been the norm until recently. Granted, Everypost is a mobile application which can be frustrating for some to type a post but it’s a new application and the owners seem enthusiastic on expanding features – I have my fingers crossed for a browser based implementation that can be used on PC’s and laptops.

I did not write this article with the intent to endorse Everypost, I’m simply sharing my experience which I believe will help some of you and perhaps encourage you to explore social networking to its fullest extent while removing some of the frustrations.That said, if you are aware of other solutions out there I’d be interested in hearing about them and I will gladly update this post with a list of tools and their pros & cons so if you follow this article it and you will receive updates.

I also did not attempt to give advice on how often and what to post if you are small business. I am still learning myself and perhaps I will blog about my experiences when I feel I have something to share. The one thing I will mention are the topics that I continually come across which I’m learning more and more about – keep your content relevant, to the point, easily readable and use catchy graphics. If you were to read my blog you would notice that this is the first post that I am trying to keep extremely relevant, use catchy images and to the point please contact me about anything related to blogging as I’d be interested in discussing.

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Do I need to socialize my business on sites such as facebook, twitter, google+, tumblr, pinterest and others?

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By Brendan Fitzpatrick

Google

Simple answer, why not? If you have a business and are looking to sell something then what harm can there be in getting your business information out among the masses? Social networks have been around for a while but this particular niche on the internet is one of the most (if not the) fastest paced market when it comes to changes.

Until relatively recently it was very difficult to maintain multiple accounts for various social sites, however – there are several companies that have begun to solve these problems. ‘If This Then That’ (ifttt.com) is a site that allows you to link all of your social networks together and more! I can’t even begin to explain how powerful this site/application is so I don’t want to describe or link to a single article, you should google ‘ifttt’ and read through some of the articles and solutions and then open an account and try to build your own solutions.. you will truly be amazed. Post something to your facebook page and have ifttt post it to Google+, twitter and pinterest! Set the temperature of your house based on the weather, send an email to all of your contacts based on a condition and so much more!

Okay, ifttt has enabled alot of people and businesses to simplify the management of their social accounts which I find fascinating – however, as good as it is – it wasn’t the exact solution for my situation that I was looking to solve. I’m not sure there is a web site that allows someone to create a single post which is then posted to all of your social sites (ifttt can probably do this with some customization but I found some quirks).. However, I found THE best mobile app that accomplishes 100% of what I needed to do. Everypost.com gives you the ability to create a single post on your phone and post it to some of the most popular social sites out there (twitter, google+, facebook, tumblr, pinterest and a few others).

Secret sauce – most people want to increase traffic to their web site, so using the native linking features of facebook and google+ does not let you link a post directly to your web site.. ie. if you use facebook to update your google+ profile, you will simply have a link on your googe+ profile that leads directly back to your facebook page instead of a link to where you really want to send your followers, Everypost solves this problem! You can post any message with any link to all of your accounts in just a few clicks.

My only gripe now is that Everypost is soooo good that I want it to do more. For example, I want to be able to post to multiple business pages, I can get around this by creating multiple logins so not a major issue. I also want the ability to repost older posts, this way if I open a new account somewhere I can simply go back and repost my older content. Finally, one last update that would be great is the ability to edit posts somehow.. typos in a post are no longer impacting a single post – they go across all of my social networks so typos are embarrasing and broken links (typos) can cause more harm than good and manually updating them all .. well, goes against the reason why Everypost exists.

So if the answer to the title of this article wasn’t clear, for most businesses it does make sense to have multiple social networking accounts because tools such as ifttt.com and everypost.com now make it practical. For my website (http://anniversariesbyyear.com) I recently opened a twitter account, google+, pinterest, tumblr and facebook business page and traffic is slowly but surely building up which means higher page views and profits.

I haven’t attempted to go into how to use these social networks, ie. what to post and how often to post, this depends on what your business is about and who your audience is. I will likely post a blog about this topic in the near future.

Any questions or feedback is welcome..

 

I want to buy a domain name that someone already owns, can I do that?

Internet In Review
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Yes! Not only can you buy a domain name that already exists but you can make good money by purchasing desirable domain names and reselling them at a premium price.

I personally will not pay for services that negotiate with sellers on your behalf as I feel their loyalty is either with the seller or with the higher prices. You’ll typically see these services advertised to sellers based on maximizing their profits showing a long list of domain names that have sold for 10’s of thousands of dollars. Many of these services are commission based with incentives towards maximum profit.

There are several ways to find the contact information of a domain name owner, I highly suggest that you email them vs. calling them directly. In many cases the contact phone number goes nowhere but many owners are not interested in selling their domain names so a phone call may agitate them as they’ll see it as spam. I also don’t recommend using back ordering services from companies such as godaddy.com, it’s a complete ripoff in my mind. They collect a nominal fee from unlimited people and you may have to wait years for the domain name to expire and you have to hope that they don’t renew the name or sell it on their own.

Domain name owner information if public information and can easily be found on any free ‘Whois‘ service, Network Solutions offers a Whois service here. You will likely find several email addresses when you look up the domain name that you are interested in, chose the one that looks most appropriate or include them all if necessary and ask them politely in an email if the domain name is for sale. Another simple way to find contact information is to try go to to the Domain Name in a browser, if they have a developed web site they will usually have a contact or email link visible somewhere on the site, usually near the top or bottom of the page.

If the owner expresses interest then you can go from there but asking more information can easily turn a domain name owner off. The one piece of advise I will offer is to try to use an email address that is not associated with anything related to the domain name of interest, in many cases the seller will google your name and email address and if they think that you are affiliated with a company that needs this domain name they may increase their minimum value many times over. One way to keep sellers in line (at least some) is a reality check, ask them for usage reports for the past 24 months which show how many unique visitors come to the site as well as where they are coming from. If they don’t know how many unique visitors the site has (and in many cases it will be close to zero) they will realize that the domain may only have limited value to a limited audience which may convince them to sell to you.

I HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you use an escrow service when buying a domain name. Godaddy.com offers escrow services for transactions up to $3,000 and you can use Escrow.com for higher transactions.

I have bought and sold a few domain names, if you find this article helpful please share it. If this article wasn’t helpful or clear then please let me know if you have any questions and I will try to clarify these steps.