Companies whose social-media efforts don't occasionally "suck" probably aren't trying hard enough, writes Lee Odden. The key is to distinguish between correctable mistakes and outright failure, he argues; it's fine to make missteps while you find your brand's identity, but you can't afford to sacrifice trust, engagement or openness along the way. "There's nothing wrong with testing and failing. But do so after listening and participating with the channels you'll be engaging," Odden advises.
One way to draw attention to your blog is to ratchet up the intensity of your writing and presentation, blogger Sonia Simone notes. Easy ways to spice up the posts you're putting on your blog include making sure your posts include relevant pictures, making sure you write about topics you feel something truly passionate about and sharing bits of yourself (even if its a little bit embarrassing).
In the world of social media, it's incredibly easy to get so caught up in the world of the "next, new thing," David Finch points, that you miss out on opportunities to figure out how to better use what you already have. Instead of sitting around musing about what service is going to beat out Twitter or which social network might finally overcome the Facebook juggernaut, Finch suggests "Engag[ing] in conversations within the communities you are currently a part of" and "Simplify[ing] and go back to the basics of social media: People first, tools second."
David Pogue finally was convinced to try out Twitter after seeing it in action while serving on a grant committee. The article follows Pogue's trials and tribulations with the microblogging service and a bunch of useful tips and tricks he picked up along the way.
Ads are getting up in viewers' kitchens as Madison Avenue seeks to maximize the impact of spots in a fragmented, TiVo'd world. The Wall Street Journal offers its picks for the best (and worst) of the current crop.