Thursday, 30 December 2010

Digg my Facebook Youtubid Twitt

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Hasn't the world changed so much. All the new social media tools that are available to facilitate socialising or market your business, to advertise or simply to stalk your new love? I remember just five years ago trying to get my head around Myspace personal page coding, unsuccessfully. I joined Facebook soon after and have been joining social media websites ever since, even more so since writing MachineDaenas blog. This is a small lie actually, as I remember for years prior to myspace using Faceparty, long before Facebook was around. For those of you who don't know what Faceparty is, it's basically a dirty UK version of facebook that at one point was more popular in terms of page impressions than Amazon and eBay in the UK! Impressive eh? I've recently seen the film 'The Social Network' and have been obsessively wrapping my head around the social media circle and tools/websites. I have got a good feel for what people want from a website that facilitates being social or the publishing of media and I wanted to share my findings and opinions on it all with you stupid twitts.

I like to think of this post as a mini review of what is best from the social media websites that I've used and what's not so good - sort of like a miniature critique on the social sites I've got experience of using. Bare in mind that each website is designed for a different purpose and each have their own USPs (Unique Selling Points).



Youtube is something that I plan to use a lot more in 2011. As most of you should know Youtube is a video content sharing website whereby you can upload, edit, share and view video content. The main benefits of Youtube are that it's free to use, as are many of the social networking websites, it is a lazy way of gaining information (just find, sit and watch!) and you can often find precisely what you're looking for very quickly. Youtube can be monetised (Youtube partnership program) and you can really add value to your business product, business service or even just your social standing through sharing content. The main drawbacks are that Youtubes partnership program can be difficult to join (you need to have numerous videos, high levels of views and strict content parameter such as no copyright or trademark infringements). This means that actually being able to monetise your content can take time, but I'm very aware that once you get on the program it's very lucrative indeed, particularly if you have a good number of subscribers and followers. Another major drawback is that the content can take a long time to edit and upload to Youtube, depending on the length, quality and editing needs of the video, unlike some of the other social media websites for both business or pleasure where you can simply type and hit 'enter'. Here's a little video tutorial to help you see how to use Youtube. I picked this video particularly because I like the South African accent! haha.



You can view Machinedaena's Youtube channel, there isn't any video content on there just yet but there definitely will be in the early part of 2011 - please subscribe to get updates of the content on there. 


Twitter is another social media tool I plan to use a whole lot more in 2011 and onwards. Twitter is a very basic way of sharing links to pictures, websites, music, blogs, products etc as well as 140 characters of content (link characters count toward the content character limit). Twitter is very useful to quickly target your information at a particular person, or list of people, and is very easy to use. Your  content can be written, added and shared in seconds. Twitter is a great way to gain a following or audience. As a social tool, I haven't really had the same level of interaction with my target audience (particularly friends) as with other social websites that I use, but have used Twitter quite a lot to gain exposure to MachineDaena and other websites that I run or administer, personally and in business. Twitter lacks the ability to monetise and also lacks extensive content sharing due to the character limitation, however you can very easily refer people onto better content using Twitter. The added benefit of using twitter is that it can easily be used to integrate into websites to share content and you can see what Sir Alan Sugar has been up to recently - something I know you're ALLLL very happy to know about! 
Follow Machinedaena on Twitter to read my tweets. 

Facebook is something that I've used a hell of a lot over the past three or so years, particularly in the last year. I've used it mainly in a social capacity rather than business capacity, because it's very good for sharing high levels of content, for managing your social calendar, for updating people on events and for stalking people. OK, so I don't stalk too often these days but you get where I'm coming from. It's very useful for simply just keeping in touch with people, particularly those that you may struggle to keep in touch with due to geographical issues. There are adverts on Facebook which can be annoying, plus Facebook cannot currently be monetised in the traditional (Ad)sense, which makes it poor for business use directly, however you can use Facebook to gather information about people which can be sold, or to simply refer hundreds or thousands of people onto further products or services so Facebook has a fantastic potential for business if used well. I'll continue to use Facebook socially as currently there is no obvious rival in terms of usability and popularity, but I'll be investigating how to use Facebook in business much more as the new year falls. 
Add me on facebook to interact with Machinedaena on Facebook. 


Digg is a social media tool that I'm not so accustomed to just yet. I've got a few accounts on Digg but haven't yet actually done very much on any of the just yet. Digg has been around for around six years and is one of the smaller players in the social media website arena. In fact, there has been much talk and speculation regarding the sale of Digg (at one point Google were in talks over a $200m takeover) and the company are no performing so well on the cashflow front having to rely on investors to keep the business afloat - which incidentally is probably the main drawback to Digg. The main function of Digg is to publish or re-publish content in various formats and has a primary functionality to 'digg' a particular story such as vote it 'up'. Formerly very popular and has now been adopted by other social media sites, particularly Youtube and facebook. Digg is fantastic as a way of raising more awareness of your content and potentially to drive traffic to your website, however is not so much used as a two way communication platform such as Facebook or Twitter. It's very much reliant on quality of content and generating high levels of exposure, even before it is 'Dugg' up to being popular content. More recently with the update of V.4 the user interface of Digg has become more like the other social media websites in that you can follow or link with other profiles which was previously a function neglected. Overall I'd say that Digg is worth a shot. It's certainly not a time waste and if your content is written well enough and gets enough exposure Digg can be very useful as a business or traffic generating purpose. So far as actual social use is concerned however, I'd stick with some of the other social networking sites for this aspect. 
Digg or follow machinedaena's content on Digg.com


Linkedin is 'Facebook for business'. It's basically a more professional version of Facebook where you should expect to see more information about companies, people's business, career or academic experience rather than pictures of what they were up to when they got drunk at the weekend. I've been using Linkedin for almost exactly as long as I've been using Facebook and have found it immensely useful for day to day job related business. It's fantastic to connect with people in a similar business environment to you, or people within a similar community so that you can contact them with business related enquiries. It can take time to set up and for it to really be useful you need to have built up a history of useful connections, however I can say that within a business context I have definitely made money from Linkedin through selling things such as recruitment services or health and safety training. The major drawback to Linkedin is that it's very reliant on the business aspect. It's not generally used for 'socialising' and I'm constantly aware of how 'professional' I'm coming across when using Linkedin for marketing my work's business services. On the plus side, is that you can market yourself very easily as Linkedin almost works on a CV profile based page whereby you're basically presenting yourself in a professional way to everyone that views your profile. 


Verdict on Linkedin is that it's a must have for business, particularly anyone in a sales or marketing related job, however not so good for socialising. It lacks a complex content uploading mechanism that Facebook or Youtube has, however you can now have statuses and follow other people, as well as 'link' to them. I'll continue to use Linkedin in 2011 but I'll likely try and integrate a this with Machinedaena's blog if I direct the website more toward a professional look rather than it's current smart casual look / content. 
Add Daena on Linkedin to follow my business progress


Last.fm is just about acceptable as a social media website. It's primary function is to provide music, music recommendations and information about all things musical - including profiles, ticket information and gig lists. As you can imagine Last.fm is popular with emos and new bands trying to break through into the music industry, but more recently last.fm has moved in line with social media trends to provide additional communication lines such as detailed profiling of the user, comments sections, groups and journals. I've been using Last.fm for just two years but have raked up around 2000 tracks of listening time and discovered some pretty cool new music through the website. I can't say I've been social on the website whatsoever as I've never posted a comment, edited my profile or done anything on it aside from listening to music but the functionality is there nonetheless. I imagine this website is no so good for business if you're outside the music industry, but exceptionally good if you are within the music arena. Visit last FM to set up a profile and get listening, you'll be surprised at what music you discover! 

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Spoof / Guerilla Marketing - viral heaven

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Everyone likes seeing something new, something different or something just outrageously unusual. Whether this is in business or a banterful capacity. Well, some of you may have heard of Guerilla Marketing? The guerilla marketing concept is sort of the two capacities combined, business and banter that is! If you tap on Wikipedia you'll see guerilla marketing you'll see guerilla marketing described as marketing of an unexpected nature and marketing in an unconventional nature. Often guerilla marketing is an unusual idea, usually totally original and is deployed in a way in which can be very impacting. 

Often the main driver behind guerilla marketing is one of two things, 1) There is a tight budget to work to, and guerilla marketing often is a way of gaining high levels of exposure through word of mouth and indirectly through traditional media channels once people have 'marvelled' at the piece of innovative marketing and subsequently republished about it; and 2) The idea is too good to not employ and potential results from the particular marketing campaign are too high to risk not doing. 

Well I agree with this, but sometimes when you see the guerilla marketing active in society or see pictures or videos of it at a later date it's difficult not to think to yourself "the designer of this campaign are just having a laugh! Some epic banter!". That said, I simply enjoy looking and laughing at the unusual results of the guerilla marketing and thought it'd be fantastic to share some of the good work of these marketers with the business or banter viewers of Machinedaena's blog. Feel free to comment and leave feedback: 


Used on a busy public road to advertise a teeth whitening product
Raising awareness of a new condom product from Durex
Product marketing on public transport for a watch brand
Pasta anyone? 
Job board advertisement - fantastic motivator for people to leave their jobs
and sign up!
Carlsberg -money talks. 
Roulette baggage run - Casino advertising
Another dental related guerilla marketing campaign
Hoover advert - very innovative this one!
Is this guerilla marketing or vandalism?
Kit-Kat guerilla marketing. Think how many picture will be taken
of people on this bench!
If you have any other guerilla marketing pictures of videos that you think are worthy of a mention, put the link in the comment section. 

Monday, 20 December 2010

Noobs guide to Wordpress.com - Free Blog and Web hosting for business

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As always, I've been using and testing numerous tools that are essential, and not so essential but 'nice to haves', to develop business ideas for small business enterprising activities. Most recently, as an aspiring entrepreneur myself I've been utilising much talked about 'wordpress'. Wordpress is an open source content management system (CMS) often used to publish blogs, or business websites. Many of the worlds largest or most well known websites use the MYSQL and PHP back end that is Wordpress, 12% of the top 1,000,000 websites to be accurate.


Wordpress Formats - pros and cons?

Wordpress comes in two formats, wordpress.com and wordpress.org. The first, wordpress.com is free to use and you can customise your domain name (addyourwebsitename.com). It's easy to set up and hosting is free from Wordpress. There are certain disadvantages of this however for a beginner or non-technical curious, this option is fantastic for getting accustomed with blogging or basic web development. Spamming is taken care of as is set-up, upgrades and back-ups. I've recently used this to start a basic help and advice site for CV making - Visit how to Make a CV to track my progress so far (this website is less than a week old and is very much a work in progress). The disadvantages are that wordpress.com cannot be monetised as easily as other providers such as Google's Blogger or wordpress.org. Supposedly when your traffic gets to over 25,000 hits per month you can monetise the site and split the earnings 50/50 with Wordpress, however this isn't very good business in the long term. There is option to negotiate this I'm sure if you have massive traffic volume which would give you better negotiating standing. This factor isn't so important if you're just starting out as all of the content that is published on your website belongs to you and as such you can export the content to another website, along with your domain name at a later date, should your business website be lucrative in traffic volume.

Wordpress.org is a little more technie. It enables you to have full control of the PHP back end and integrate one of the many useful plug-ins that have been designed to improve and increase functionality which is very useful for a small business website. With wordpress.com, there are widgets available to improve functionality, as well as numerous fancy templates, but these are very limited in their use. Spamming and back-ups are not handled by Wordpress.org, you'll also need some more technical knowledge in how to set websites up, as well as having to pay for hosting (which isn't too expensive really anyway, I recommend Godaddy who are an excellent provider of domains and web hosting). I haven't fully tested wordpress.org as I wanted to get familiar with wordpress.com first, although I will be testing out wordpress.org in the near future to expand my learning and employ one of my business ideas. I'll report back my findings and in due course. 


Summary

So far I've found Wordpress a very pleasant tool to use. I can see that it's got better applications for business because of how many widgets and plugins you can use. Also from my knowledge there are many more actively profitable users of wordpress than other free CMS providers. It's very popular within the geek community and there are endless tutorials available on how to set up, layout and make the most of your wordpress blog or wordpress CMS websites. The dashboard / admin section of the website is very easy to use indeed although the statistics that are available to your wordpress.com website are not as detailed or useful as google analytics, you can add Google Analytics to wordpress.org so at least there is this facility available within the products counterpart. I'll likely publish another article later on in my research to report more findings as at the moment this is just initial use and research. I can see that using wordpress.com is going to take a lot of the pain out of the publishing your content in a tidy, well presented manner, however the problem with monetising the blog / website concerns me - something that is satisfied by the fact that I know I can export my content at anytime to a more money friendly CMS, free or paid. 

I'd recommend anyone learning to give this a go, although I'd also certainly recommend anyone looking to consider the 'best' option for their content purpose to consider other options also.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Top 10 pet hates, pet peeves and general annoyances

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There are some things that I fucking hate! Others that are just general annoyances and some rather niggly things. My biggest pet hates, pet peeves and just general annoyances are as extensive! I'll detail them because I think it's quite healthy to voice them and other frustrations now and again. I'd like very much to know what your pet hates are too! I'll be blogging the best and/or funniest 'pet hates', 'pet peeves' and 'annoyances' so list them in the comments section for mine, and others' amusement! Who knows (?) if I get enough I may be able to do a funny list and a most annoying voted list! I know you have some pet hates and peeves, here are MachineDaena's top 10 in order of least to most annoying:

Number 10. Over-exaggeration 

'BIG' over-exaggeration to be precise. OK, everyone over-exaggerates at least a little; "The train was running 20 minutes late", "I made her cum in just 3 mins" or "I've lost half a stone this month" but some people are appalling! This shouldn't become a habitual thing! I especially can't stand it when they know you know the story but they do it anyway in your presence! It's actually rather excruciating! A little over-exaggeration makes a story funny, but too much makes a story totally untrue, and makes the teller a total wanker! 

Number 9. One-upmanship 



One-upmanship. "My story is better than yours". I have to admit, sometimes I naturally do this so in some respects I'm a hypocrite, although in my defense I genuinely do actually have a vast number of pretty extreme, awesome and funnier stories than you (OK, most. . .slight over-exaggeration there)! I don't mind a little but of this, because it can be really amusing to watch someone trying their best to conjure up a better outcome that his social pal. Again this pet hate comes rather situational, I get very annoyed at people that chose to get one over on a friend by telling outright lies about what has happened in relaity! I know people that do this a lot, and what tends to happen is that people laugh AT THEM, rather than their story! Don't be a dick-head - tell real stories, how they happened please! 

Number 8. Self-love


No, not wankers or furious masturbaters; people that just love to look in the mirror at every opportunity! You know the type? Takes two hours to get ready, won't associate with 'lessers' and is totally self-indulged. Again, everyone can get a little bit like this at times, but moderation is beautiful, unlike the individuals that seem to perve on themselves! 



Number 7. People that are better than I am at playing Call of Duty (COD)


Call of Duty (COD)? OK I know this is pretty sad. I don't care. I won't pretend that many people, if any (!), will agree or sympathise with me on this one but for one sec imagine some cocky little pre-pubescent squeaky voiced bastard devil child yanks spending over five minutes in a game virtually humiliating you by shooting, stabbing, grenading, flash-banging and teabagging you? Not that bad I hear you say? Now imagine the bald-ball-bagged little shit both power-banters you over his geekrophone AND then get's a massively better than you set of 'for all to see' killing and accuracy stats? One way road to smashed televisions-ville. The stats don't lie.

Number 6. Small-Man syndrome 


Anyone that knows me shall be acutely aware that I'm not the tallest. I can also be rather confident and cocky at times. Don't mix the elements up for small-man syndrome! The missing link is natural angriness resulting from inadequacy of height. "what did the small angry man get when he stormed through a woman's legs? A clit round the ear and a flap round the face". STOP, DON'T JOKE! This is a serious disease affecting those males sub 5ft 4in who visualise themselves in a body of Heman or Popeye and act accordingly. No really, a major pet mate is angriness! I think I actually just hate all people that are overly angry, it's just that for smaller people it is more noticeable!



Number 5. Football 'over-banter' 


<-- How much does this kid look like charlie from the video 'charlie bit my finger'! Anyway, football 'over-banter' - I hate dick-heads that, even if they've just met you, think it's acceptable human behaviour to give massive headache and super heavy levels of banter toward you or your beloved childhood football team whom you've put hours into watching, supporting and purchasing things from. Small banter = funny! Big sporting banter = get out of my face or someone will hooligan you!  

Number 4. Smokers in public doorways 



Be more considerate toward other peoples' health! This is a major one for me and was a contender for the number 1 spot. The smoking ban has made things far worse because now instead of smoke spread thinly throughout a train platform, bar, pub or HOSPITAL waiting room, it's now spread triple-thick outside the doorway of every public place in the UK. Smoking isn't cool, least of all when you're freezing cold stood outside a bar in your dancing shirt or glam-wear with blue wrinkly lips. FAIL. 

Number 3. Noise ignorance 


This one is pretty standard really. So I thought I'd jazz it up with a Christmas festive audio treat (just turn your speakers on and click play). Whilst this is playing out, just remember to have a little more noise awareness. We don't want to hear you wanking, shagging, gossiping, moaning, screaming, watching tennis or reading humour. 



Number 2. Family or Friend Bashing 


Nobody likes it when their friends and family are put in a position of dislike or discomfort. I especially hate this. It's a major pet hate of MachineDaenas. I'll fully admit that I catch small man disease cold when my friends or family are bashed and often have to dispatch the ninjas. . . . . .

Number 1. Negative Facebook status' 


I'm not exactly number one fan of negative people anyhow, although I can see how a post about pet hates and pet peeves totally undermines this statement (before you say so). It's not fair to push, ney PREACH, this on your fellow pals and family on facebook. I routinely cull people from my facebook friends list that are too negative because sometimes you just have enough going on in your life without additional negative stress from some girl you once met in a club when you was 16 years old. You wouldn't walk up to someone you've not seen in 5 years and tell them about your abortion | toe stubbage | hangover | Xfactor vent | inadequate pay, so please don't do it on Facebook. Or at least if you do, please don't expect me to see it. . . . . . 

Sunday, 5 December 2010

November / moustache = MOVEMBER fun!


Movember? For those of you who don't know what Movember is, it's a charity initiative that started in Oz years ago which entails blokes in November across the globe to grow a Moustache all month. Many people chose to raise money for charities particularly for prostate cancer, but it's also a great way of raising awareness of the charities. I heard about Movember in early November 2010 and luckily I'd not shaved so had a chance to get on board. Unfortunately I hadn't heard about it early enough to raise awareness and cash for charity, so I'll do this next year with good preparation and hopefully earn loads for a worthy cause. I simply thought it would be cool to see / feel what it's like to grow my man hair for a whole month! Here are the results of my Movember!


The Movember tramp



Here’s me with just short of a month of hair growth from November. As you can see, I’m a fairly manly man, but not a REALLY MANLY man because my hair growth is not mega thick. I look like a tramp, my girlfriend hated it and I think I probably nearly lost my job in part because of it!

The Movember David Brent and Movember David Haye

Self explanatory this one. I’ve included some comparatory pictures for you too. I think this one actually suits me a little, although I do look like a proper mental weirdo. Not quite as nails as Haye, or as funny as Brent but then I'm no boxer or comedian! 


 

Rufus / Handle Bars Movember


A personal Favourite of mine. Doesn't look so fantastic on me because growth either side of my pie hole is relatively thin, but you get the idea. I really enjoyed cutting this one! I'd love to have the handle bar Movember permanently however it's not epic enough to justify this! 


THE MOVEMBER


OK, this is what I look like if I don't shave my moustache for a month. Would you have given to charity in exchange for me walking around donning this? I look like a paedophile rapist, or your average weatherman. Epic! 




Hitler Movember
Just a little hitler fun, always goes down a delightful treat. Lolocaust. 




Email machinedaena@gmail.com for enquiries, ideas, opinions and proposals. Don't forget to follow me and tell you friends about me. MachineDaena. www.twitter.com/machinedaena

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Top 10 newbie online social media resources

Hi all. Do you want to start your own business or pursue an idea and have no clue about Social Business? Social Media? Social Marketing? Online tools? I'm certainly no expert in any of these areas, but I mentioned in my last post that I'm keen to start some direction in my research and learning with view to being able to become more aware of social online marketing and to at some point potentially make some money from something I both enjoy, am interested in, have a limited level of understanding in and want to improve my understanding of. I've mentioned blogging as being a potential area for interest and inevitably revenue. People read things with many expectations and within varied contexts and I would hope that some people read my blog for three main reasons - 1) The blog content is interesting to them, 2) The blog content makes them laugh, and/or 3) My blog inspires others to take action on some of their thoughts and ideas (which could in reality be the next 'google', the next 'facebook' or next 'eBay' - these all started off as ideas that people acted on)!

I have ideas that I'm taking action on, but if YOU haven't yet and you'd like to have a starting point for which resources to use to learn and research to enable to you to do this better this post may be of use. As promised in my previous blog article, I've come up with a list of some of the most useful items and online social or business resources that I've either been using actively or plan to use. I'll try to keep each item as short as possible here as I really could go one forever to explain each (I could write a 100-page website on each). 



GoDaddy Hosting and WordPress

I've chosen godaddy for three reasons really. Firstly, this is widely regarded and reputed to be one of the best domain name and hosting providers available in the world today. They're big, have their fingers in a lot of pies and are in absolutely little or no danger of going bust / out of business. Second, everyone seems to tell me that these guys are the best and easiest to use, including resources/people that I list later on in the blog. They are so widely used that there are lots of instructions and tutorials on how to use their domain name registration and hosting services. Third and finally, godaddy are a facility that directly allow you to literally act on your ideas by registering a suitable website name and hosting your website to start talking to people! 

2. Google



I honestly can't speak highly enough about google! From MY experience, all of the products that I use of theirs are highly tuned and of very good application and use. They've also got their fingers in a lot of pies which again means that they'll be hard pushed to fold. Particularly useful products include gmail, which is good for storage, spam filtering and manages your mail well, google analytics, which tracks your website / blog's statistics in terms of visits, visitors and the associated demographics, and another key product is adsense which enables registered users to access marketing activities inward (making cash from placing other peoples adverts) or outwards (actually advertising via google in various formats). If you own a website or blog, you HAVE to be useing Googles products. There are many more that I use and I will discuss these in much more detail soon, but the ones I've mentioned are key. 

3. Youtube

I'll let the video do the explaining. . . 



I like youtube because it brings TV the masses. In a business context, it's free advertising so long as the content (and traffic) is there. If the content is shit, the content won't be re-blogged, re-linked and become viral, but on the other hand so long as there are items that a viewer want to see or are compelled so see, they'll view (and in turn make you money if you're savvy ;D ). OK, youtube is good for many reasons and it really is down to your perception as to how it can be used best in a business way, social way or any other way for that matter. I like it for two main reasons really, 1) because it's easy for a user to, errr, USE and 2) because it is something that can be monetised easily. 


I've been recently taking a listen to what Edzjohnson and JeffBT have got to offer in terms of advise. I've also been doing a great deal of laughing at the now rather critically acclaimed Shane Dawson. Check them all out, hopefully they'll link to me and scratch my back a little. 

4. Blogger (Google product) 


I use Google's blogger to make this blog. I haven't got a lot of experience in using many other tools for 'wizarding' or facilitating the making of a blog or website (and it's something that I'm researching), but my experience with blogger has been a relatively good one so far. It's also allowed me to integrate many or all of the other tools that I describe VERY easily. I'm not at all technical in terms of using the internet or barely even a computer, however due familiarising myself with blogger I've been able to learn a lot about web, social media and all the other associated 'media' and marketing tools. Blogger is very easy to use. 
You can sign up and have a blog made within 5 minutes, because there are loads of templates and free widgets for structuring things on your blog. Blogger is also well integrated with other Google products which I actively use which helps for ease and convenience. It's the time and care that you take toward making, editing and marketing your content and articles that will make the difference on it's success. I try to take a lot of time proof reading, editing and re-editing my content before I actually submit it for people to read (publish the article). OK, so I'll make the odd spelllling or grammar errorrr but on the whole I hope reading my articles is a good experience for people. Let me know your feedback on the content and layout in the comments section if you agree or disagree! 

5. SEOMOZ


SEOMOZ is basically a glorified blog in itself, but someone is making ALOT of money from this! What this website provides are tips, advise, guides, tools and expertise on all things SEO (search engine optimisation) and SEM (search engine marketing), as well as the associated essentials for web marketing. 
For a start, the site is very well optimised as you'd expect and a huge amount of people link to it (which is always a good sign as to a websites usefulness). They send marketing advise in a not too 'spammy' way, which as a result of reading has continually expanded my learning experience. You have to pay to use a number of 'premium' features on the website, which I'm sure would be value for money, but I'm yet to test these. I'll do this at some point and blog the results (yes, I'll be your Guinea Pig!). I suppose it's tough to really explain how really useful SEOMOZ actually is because without actually READING the articles, you won't understand, but take my word for it I've so far found SEOMOZ rather tasty. Oh my main reason for liking it is that they're very honest in they're content! They don't hold back too much and pretty much just let you know in layman's terms 'how it is'! Try them out at www.seomoz.org. 


6. Technorati


Technorati is an Internet search engine for searching blogs. By June 2008, Technorati was indexing 112.8 million blogs and over 250 million pieces of tagged social media. The name Technorati is a blend of the words technology and literati, which invokes the notion of technological intelligence or intellectualism. You can use Technorati to search good blogs and research your topic of interest, or (and crucially for bloggers) submit your blog post for others to find. There are lots of these website types around but Technorati is one of, if not THE, market leader and has many accolades to prove this. It can be used to add credibility and/or traffic to your blogsite. 


7. Wikipedia 


Wikipedia is the ultimate blog. Advert-free, and arguably the most useful tool on the internet. Imagine having over 17 million articles of information right at your computer, free and accurate. OK, so it's not always accurate but they run a very tight verification process for all articles submitted so if things are not referenced properly then they get flagged and removed quite quickly. Wikipedia is the ultimate student resource. Most of my high school and university work can be attributed to Wikipedia, so I think it's worth mentioning a little 'thank you'! I continue to use (and often plagiarism) Wiki, even in my blog, which is why it's in my top 10!  


8. Facebook


Over 500 million active users. Over $800 Million in revenue (2009). Alexa rank 2. Just 1700+ employees and still growing. I've written about Facebook a lot in my blogs, not nearly enough as I've got the time to, because it facinates me. It also provides me with the tools necessary to keep social in a busy lifestyle and from a business perspective it allows be to take my ideas to the masses quickly. I use it everyday, YOU use it everyday, Will Smith uses it everyday. I can't say I've learn't very much from Facebook, so this isn't the reason why I've added it here. It's just that I can really see the potential in business application in the longer term from Facebook. Their advertising products are still quite young, so are still in the developing phase, but clearly there are a lot of applications (in both senses of the word) for Facebook socially and in business. 


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9. Linkedin


I've used Linkedin for around four years now and it is absolutely fantastic for 'linkin' to business contacts. I call it the facebook for professionals! It's basically a way justifying using 'Facebook' at work. In all fairness, you can do TONS of things in linked in, much like with facebook and google, such as advertise, create and publish to the masses your content of all types and, what I find most fascinating, bring together groups of communities with ease. If you work in an environment were you have a lot of contact with people, get on linkedin. More recently, Linkedin has become more like Facebook because they've simplified much of their user interface and linked to other social media websites etc. Linkedin has over 80 million members as of Sept 2010 so it's big. Linkedin is also really easy to use which goes some way to explaining why it's been popular. 


10. Wordpress

Wordpress is RAVED about! Basically it is another 'Google blogger' type tool, only that it is for making both Blogs and/or Websites. Now, I've not actually used Wordpress just yet - this is on the list, but I've seen enough Wordpress-made websites and heard enough good feedback to know that it's the tool that I'm going to use a huge amount more in the future. I'll be reviewing more about this I'm sure in the future. Hopefully I'll also be able to show some of my Wordpress examples too! 


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