Podcasts as Business Education


Are you listening to Podcasts? If you are a marketer you should really consider it. Podcast listening increased 25% last year in the United States.  I’ve been listening to Podcasts on a wide variety of topics for years and can personally attest to the benefits, particularly for content marketing work. I listen to several social media Podcasts including Michael Stelzner’s  Social Media Marketing Podcast and Social Pros with Jay Baer, Jeff Rohrs and Nick Cicero. But I also find many of the general business Podcasts extremely useful for my work at Experian, where I write about small business credit trends.

The great thing about Podcasts is you can listen, usually for free, try it out, see if you like it and then subscribe, or simply drop it from your list. Subscriptions are invariably free. After you subscribe, you get a new episode automatically each time they are available. It’s like when the paper boy tossed the news on your lawn only hundreds of times better. You get to absorb the content by simply listening while you perform other tasks like exercising, cooking, driving or even shopping. Podcasts can be a wellspring of ideas for content marketing too. I’ve listened to the Ideacast, a weekly podcast featuring the leading thinkers in business and management from Harvard Business Review and been inspired to do further research on a topic and create a blog post or other piece of content related to my field of work.

Of course, life’s not all about business. There are other non-business Podcasts mixed in there too which can get your creative juices marinating. One such example is the great spin off Podcast by This American Life‘s Sarah Koenig called “Serial“, which tells a single story, one chapter at a time each week, and the great “Startup” from Gimlet Media which follows the progress of former Planet Money host Alex Bloomberg as he sets out to create his own business which specializes in, you guessed it.. Podcasting.  Podcast listening can become addicting. The key is to keep looking for new content so you have a wide variety in your listening device of choice and keep your hopper full.

In a recent blog on Convince and Convert, they came up with 23 Reasons Why Business People Love Podcasts and supported the post with this great Infographic check it out below. The people behind the Infographic recently launched a new website called MarketingPodcasts.com for the specific purpose of aggregating top marketing Podcasts, so be sure to check it out for new Podcasts to add to your player.  I’d highly recommend starting off with Social Pros and the Social Media Marketing podcast, particularly if you are a marketer trying to get the most out of your channels.

Also, I’m very curious if you have any recommendations on good “business” Podcasts, share them in the comments.


Please include attribution to MarketingPodcasts.com with this graphic.





Money Saving Tips from Game of Thrones Characters


Game of Thrones is a great show eh?  They film much of it in Northern Ireland at Titanic Studios, which is a large green screen facility about 1/4 mile away from where the Titanic was built, hence the name Titanic Studios.  The Belfast docklands have one of the largest economic regeneration efforts in Europe going on at the moment. It’s nice to know that film and television are a big part of that story.

I ran across this really cool Infographic on Debt Roundup just now. The blog post author for Debt Roundup is Grayson Bell, a personal finance writer. He compiled an excellent set of money saving tips and the folks over at Gryffin brought the ideas to life in an impressive Infographic layout. Grayson once ran up over $50,000 worth of credit card debt and had to learn how to break it back down. He now teaches others how to get their finances under control.

Game of Thrones Money Tips from Debt Roundup

There are quite a few money saving categories on the diagram that jump out at me. Smoking cigarettes for example. I can’t believe I once smoked but it’s true. I quit in 1997 though – to this day by far one of the hardest things I ever did. So, let’s count up how much money I have saved just by making that one money saving decision. Since February 1997, calculating roughly a pack a day at $5, I have personally saved $31,875, a number that truly shocks me considering the other things I still spend pocket money on.

Since quitting smoking I have saved $31,875, a number that truly shocks me

– Gary Stockton

I love a good cup of coffee in the morning, it’s my guilty pleasure, I normally order a Venti coffee on the way to work from Starbucks. If I multiply $2.35 for every work day in the year I come up with roughly $600 per year. I bought an electric vehicle a few years ago and have saved a lot of money on gas, and my employer is kind enough to offer free EV charging at the office, so no worries on the transportation front. I’m afraid to calculate dining out at restaurants, so I think instead I’ll simply close this post with a recommendation to go over to Debt Roundup for more excellent money saving tips.

Tweets With Pictures are 94% More Likely To Be Re-Tweeted

A picture might be worth a thousand words, but according to Hubspot’s Social Media Scientist Dan Zarella (@danzarrella),  recent research reveals that tweets which have an accompanying picture jump a whopping 94% in likelihood the tweet will be re-tweeted.  Naturally it depends on how compelling your content is, and perhaps there are some situations where the likelihood might be greater (Bieber, Grumpy Cat, Ellen selfie) but you get the idea.

The way Twitter works now is, if you upload a photo directly to pic.twitter.com, or via your twitter dashboard app such as Hootsuite, the image will now appear more often in the tweet stream.  So imagine this long page of textual information interrupted with your compelling image, people will notice it and this is a huge opportunity for savvy inbound marketers. Visual content is much more engaging when done well.  But there’s another newsflash for content marketers.  Instagram pictures used to work the same way on Twitter, but then Facebook bought Instagram and well, you know how that goes.   What’s interesting is, tweets with Instagram URL’s  are 42% less likely to be re-tweeted compared to tweets which have had the picture uploaded to pic.twitter.com.

Tweets Including Instagram Links are

Source: #SciChat

The chances of a re-tweet decrease dramatically perhaps due to trust issues and credibility issues. Zarella said “If I don’t know you super well and I see an Instagram link, I’m going to assume to some degree it isn’t going to be real interesting, unless you have a really great caption.”   The assumption here is that people who are sharing from Instagram are packing a lot of non-relevant hash tags into their posts.  Another interesting stat is Facebook images which are uploaded to FBcdn (the Facebook content delivery network),  tweets which include a Facebook image link, it is not going to pop up in the stream, these tweets are 47% less likely to be re-tweeted. The other thing to consider when relying on FBcdn for image tweets are the privacy settings. Because Facebook is mostly a closed private community, unless it is a public post, there is a strong likelihood that people will not be able to see the image.

Key Take-away

  1. Definitely use visual media in your posts to increase engagement.
  2. If you would like your picture tweets to show in the stream, post to pic.twitter.com
  3. For more great insights on Social Media check out Dan Zarella’s SciChat Group on Facebook


Monday Puzzle: How can you make this addition correct?

How can you make this addition correct?

Good monday morning everyone.  Here is a quick brain teaser to start the week off right.  Remember to share this with your friends.

Livescribe 3 Unlocks Productivity For Content Creators

LivescribeI’ll admit it, until recent years I was terrible at taking down good notes. I was often so tuned in to what the person I was meeting with had to say I forget to write things down.  It was made worse if they were speaking very quietly in a loud room full of people. So often, I would overlook something important.  It’s been a bit of a challenge, but I discovered Livescribe pens a few years ago, investing in a 8GB Livescribe Echo pen which enabled me to capture audio notes and jot down essential details in meetings.  I could listen back to parts of an interview or meeting and glean important facts, and this really helped me write better blog posts and stay on track.

Check out the video for the new Livescribe 3 Pens.

Recently I decided to try out the new Livescribe 3, which has been totally redesigned around mobile computing and I gotta tell you, the changes are fantastic.  The pen no longer captures audio onto the pen its self, it doesn’t need to. It now utilizes the microphone and storage on your preferred smartphone or tablet device via the Livescribe+ app.  If you want to record an interview, simply hit the record icon on your Livescribe notepad paper and your smartphone starts up the Livescribe+ recording app while you write. There are several advantages to this;  1)  You end up with much better recordings because you don’t hear that annoying scratching sound in the background, which was made by the sound of the pen writing the notes.  2) You can actually use some of this audio for Podcast content.  3)  The person you are meeting with can see that you are recording.  One of the things I found most awkward about the Echo Livescribe pen was informing people I was recording.  With the Livescribe 3, people can see what you are doing, and the pen is an excellent ice-breaker.    While you are writing on the Livescribe paper, your notes are being transferred live onto the app on your smart device, but here is where it gets really cool.  You can open up a page of notes on the Livescribe+ app, select a note in the Feed view by swiping right and the written notes will swivel around to reveal cleanly typed text. I was amazed at how well the app understood my writing.  This makes it very easy to export notes to email, Evernote or another other text editor for refinement.  If you are a blogger, this is a wonderful feature.  You can also tag notes so they can be grouped with other topics, and because the notes are being converted to text in the app, your notes are now searchable.

I am very excited about this tool, and how much more productive it is going to make me.  You can pick up a Livescribe 3 pen for around $149, but there is a bundle which comes with a nice leather folio and a one year subscription to Evernote Premium for $199.  If you are looking to take your productivity to the next level, maybe the Livescribe 3 would be just the thing to get you there.


Finding Great Content for Your Marketing on Tivo

The other day I was off work, sick, flipping around the Tivo looking for things to watch. During the Summer, it gets tough to find interesting viewing since mostly everybody is outside enjoying the sunshine. In my case, I was in bed nursing a nasty case of food poisoning, laying still, trying to take my mind off vomiting. I channel flipped, and flipped and flipped but all I could find was The View, Divorce Court and Jerry Springer reruns. The cache was empty.  So then I clicked my Tivo menu to go into the Video on Demand and to my delight I discovered a Video Podcasts category.

Tivo Video on Demand

Tivo Video on Demand

Apparently Tivo offers the ability to subscribe to video podcasts and you can even set these podcasts up as season pass, so you never miss an episode.  Why is this important? Well, for starters, the device I normally listen to Audio podcasts on is a 16GB iPhone 4S. It wouldn’t take too long for this device to fill up if I subscribe via iTunes to a lot of video content. The option is there for me if I decide to subscribe there later on though. One thing Hubspot might consider is to release an Audio version of this show so viewers with less storage could listen instead of watch.

Hubspot Marketing Update

Hubspot Marketing Update

I was delighted to see my friends Rebecca Corliss (@rebcor) and Mike Volpe (@mvolpe) from Hubspot (@hubspot)  listed in the business section for a show called “Marketing Update“. The show was previously known as “Hubspot TV”.  In the show Mike and Rebecca provide a round-up on inbound marketing related news and trends, offering an off the cuff take on what brands are doing in the world of content marketing and search optimization. The shows starts off with a few notable news articles related to marketing methodology such as Newsjacking offering an opportunties for the hosts to trade off with their lighthearted commentary. They come across as very authentic and natural.

The show then delves into a Hot Topic to do a more in-depth discussion.  I hope they continue to make the shows, in the episode I watched “LinkedIn: Let’s See Who’s Viewed Your Updates, Creepy or Not?” they provided some great insights on recent Linked In developments, and offer great recommendations on how marketers can make use of recently announced products or enhancements.  You can find more info on Marketing Update at http://www.hubspot.tv/default.aspx.

Rebecca Corliss and Mike Volpe of Marketing Update

Rebecca Corliss and Mike Volpe of Marketing Update


There are lots of other great video podcasts on Tivo such as “Small Businesses Do It Better“, hosted by Carissa Dunphy (@CaffeineKeybord) a show designed to promote and educate Small Businesses, Entrepreneurs and their supporters. You can find more info about this show at: https://twitter.com/SmBizDoItBetter.

What are you waiting for?  Click the top button on your Tivo remote and go check out the great additional content in the Video Podcasts section.


Arianna Huffington at INBOUND13

Some very wise words from Arianna Huffington. Boy did her keynote speech at INBOUND13 inspire.

Twitter Auto-response Annoys Me

I never use Twitter Autoresponders and here is why. Let’s say you follow someone, your follow generates an auto-response DM message. You read it, like what it says and want to reply to it, but because this person is not following you, you wast 10 seconds of your life thinking of something to write back to them, only to get the error message saying you can only DM people who follow you.

Twitter needs to come up with a solution which prevents the selection of the DM until you are being followed back in my opinion.

How Marketers Are Using Social Media (Infographic)


In May 2013 Michael A. Stelzner of the Social Media Examiner looked at how companies use social media in his “2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report.” He polled about 3000 marketers in both the B2C and B2B industries to get their thoughts on this subject. From their responses the TopWebDesignSchool created its Selling Social infographic, highlighting current trends and predicting future ones.

Nice job on the infographic guys!


Infographic: TopWebDesignSchools.Org


How To Request a Facebook Graph Search Invite

Here’s a quick tip compliments of Social Media Examiner.

If you still have the old Facebook search tool, and would like to be considered for the souped up Graph Search tool which is slowly rolling out now. Simply type a # hash key into search and hit enter. This will reveal a request invitation button to signal the nice people at Facebook you would like the feature. Give it a little bit more time, then soon you will notice something very different and very powerful about how you can search on Facebook.


The old Facebook search box.

Once you have Graph Search enabled your screen should look like the below.

Facebook with Graph Search enabled.

Facebook with Graph Search enabled.


After you have requested an invitation, the next time you enter a hashtag into the search box, you should see the following:


Facebook lets you know you are on the list.

Facebook lets you know you are on the list.


So What Can Graph Search Do?

Please share this tip with your friends.