The buzz phrase most commonly associated with keeping it real online is to "not drink the Kool-Aid." In fact, it's used and misused so often that some people aren't always sure what it means. (Sometimes the people who are advising you not to drink the Kool-Aid serve up the same.)
The five posts below are nowhere near Kool-Aid. While the topics are broad, ranging from a simple Blogger update to how fishermen are being impacted in the Gulf, they still share a common connection. Sometimes it is not enough to listen to what people have to say about social media, you might have to take a look for yourself. After all, this is a space where yesterday's intelligence is tomorrow's ignorance. Keep it real.
Best Fresh Content In Review, Week of June 28
• Matrix: Brand Monitoring, Social Analytics, Social Insights.
Since social media is a noisy place and brand monitoring isn't sufficient (it tends to make a brand reactive as opposed to active), Jeremiah Owyang suggests that many brand monitoring companies risk becoming little more than trilobites. He rightly says that the evolution of monitoring will be to help companies derive intelligence from excessive data. That makes sense. Given that the best run companies don't give customers what they want as much as what those customers never even knew to ask for, tapping into the mindset of consumers or customers will take a bit more than simply hearing what they have to say.
• The Plight of the Louisiana Fishing Family.
Geoff Livingston brings the plight of Louisiana fishermen to life. These brave souls have been rebuilding since Katrina, many of them had finally found their footing. That is, they had, until the BP oil spill. Many of the fishing families think about how they are going to get through the crisis day to day, with most of them volunteering or accepting modest pay just to keep the oil off the shores and hope for the best next year. But next year is a frightfully long time away and at least one organization estimates that more than 47,500 fishing homes may eventually require food assistance into next year.
• Three Essential Small Business Search Marketing Trends
What are they? First, integrating online and offline marketing. Second, tapping mobile and local searches. And third, social media advertising. Those are some heavy hitting tips from Lee Odden that don't resemble many of the social media plans that have ben implemented today. On the contrary, the entire space is moving toward integration. If this is the first you heard of these ideas, you might as well mark today on your calendar. This is when many social media-only companies could start to slide.
• Are You Gambling With Your Freelance Future?
Dean Rieck went to Las Vegas and came back with some nifty tips that any freelance writer could benefit from: play your best game, know the rules, hedge your bets, play to win, and stick with it. After all, unlike the odds on the casino floor, your chances to win have much more to do with persistence than any other measure (assuming you have talent). It's good advice, and not all that different than some I shared earlier this week. You can be as creative as you want, but run your freelancing business like a business. If you do, one day it will be a business and you can pack the freelance moniker away.
• Blogger Rolls Out Real-Time Stats For All Users.
Anybody following the Fresh Content Project might find this post almost feels out of place. It's a simple update from Louis Gray that shares real time stats from Blogger, which tends to be the most beat-up platform of the bunch when anybody talks about blogging. In reality, real-time stats is just the beginning of what has been happening at Blogger. There are much more intuitive design features that give your blog a custom look (without a template), an increasing number of useful tools, and share buttons embedded into the posts (although I haven't added them here).