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“Risk-taking, trust, and serendipity are key ingredients of joy. Without risk, nothing new ever happens. Without trust, fear creeps in. Without serendipity, there are no surprises.”  — Rita Golden Gelman

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David Meerman Scott is a marketing strategist, speaker, and best-selling author whose goal in The New Rules of Marketing & PR : How to use news releases, blogs, podcasting, viral marketing & onling media to reach buyers directly is to push the masses into a new way of targeting an audience.

This book is filled with vital information for everyone in the advertising, marketing, public relations and communication world, regarding the most cutting-edge ways of getting customers’ attention and being the most effective at it.

Along with his number of books, Scott also maintains a blog which he is constantly updating with new information that furthers the message of his books.

The social media and viral marketing bandwagon is slowly getting bigger, however, there are very few advocates for new ways of marketing who inspire as powerfully as Scott. He talks about the new rules in a way that reduces peoples’ fears of the internet and encourages taking risks in order to see positive results. His advice is straight-forward and informational, making the transition to online advertising simple enough for someone with any level of experience.

Trusting in the power of new marketing techniques is a challenge that many  professionals have to face, when looking for new, innovative forms of communicating with their publics. But it is a truly joyous experience to see your tactics creating profitable relationships.


“When I was young I was misled by flash cards into believing that xylophones and zebras were much more common.” — Amy-Elyse Neer

  • Do you ever feel lost in all of the messages floating around about social media?
  • Are you interested in learning how to use the tools online for personal and professional advancement?
  • Do you have a desire to be a part of the digital world but don’t know where to start?

Well don’t let all of the talk about new media and social networking sites mislead you any longer–find out for yourself at Michigan State in the New Media Driver’s License class.

The class is an online course with weekly assignments geared towards building student’s skills with:

  • Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter
  • Blogging and Podcasting
  • New Marketing and Digital Public Relations
  • Google Tools, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and Search Engine Marketing (SEM) including Google Adwords
  • And Presentation Zen techniques

This is an opportunity that should not be passed up by those entering today’s business world. Employers are expecting the young work force to be able to come in to their company with new ways to reach their customers or audience. Take your future into your own hands and get your driver’s license… your NMDL that is.

You didn’t get behind the wheel of a car for the first time with your eyes closed–so don’t step into your first job without knowing the way to use new media tools to their fullest potential.

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Don’t let this happen to you in today’s online world.

Join the facebook group and start learning now!

“The best search engine marketing comes from paying attention to and understanding your buyers, not manipulating or tricking them.” –David Meerman Scott, The New Rules of Marketing and PR

Optimization. The practice of optimization is making the most of a situation. Finding the perfect, most advantageous way to do something and instilling the method in order to get the best results.

I’ve been learning about the use of search engine optimization (SEO) from David Meerman Scott in his book The New Rules of Marketing and PR and from my New Media Driver’s License class at MSU. Both sources stress the complete importance of developing content for a specific audience in order to set the basis for SEO.

According to the Google Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide, SEO is about “putting your best foot forward when it comes to visibility in search engines.” This means using techniques and practices that will help boost your site in the search results of a Google search.

Taking the time to perfect these details can pay off in the long run of being found on the internet. Content development, keyword usage, easy navigation site structure, thoroughly tagging and titling pages – all of these are ways to make your site stronger and easier to read and find for search engines (and also users).

The key is making your site the most possible reader-oriented as you can, because if it is directed to be what your readers want, it will follow that search engines will be able to read it too.

There are lots of tricks and manipulations out there that seem like they can boost your site rankings and traffic. But if your purpose is to gain respect from an audience and be seen as a quality site, then being honest and developing content that your audience wants and can understand will get far more results in the long run.

“People need to see that, far from being an obstacle, the world’s diversity of languages, religions and traditions is a great treasure, affording us precious opportunities to recognize ourselves in others.” — Youssou N’Dour

Social networking is a way to establish connections with people all over the world. Networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter allow all of your friends to follow your every move.

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Facebook was a way of connecting high school friends through college and college friends after graduation. Today the older generations are joining facebook with hopes to RE-connect with people they knew 20 years ago.

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Twitter is what I like to think of as my constant away message. At all times my “followers” can know what I’m doing or thinking just by checking my latest tweet update.

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LinkedIn is the newest network I have joined but it already seems like it is going to be a great resource. It is the 21st century form of a little black book, filled with professional co-workers and acquaintances.

The most exciting part of all these networks is that they are continuously growing every day. Not just that but people are constantly finding new ways to use applications to make their profile serve an even greater purpose.

Being a part of the fast-paced online world can be intimidating but it also has advantages that just don’t exist through phone calls, fax machines, and snail mail.

I hope to find a way to intertwine my online profiles–so my facebook friends follow me on Twitter and ready my blog and eventually become my network on LinkedIn. As my use of each site increases I hope that they will each serve a different purpose to delivering my complete message.

I know I use my prescense on the Internet to keep in touch with people all around the world. I believe one day no matter where you are from or what language you speak–the Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn logos will define a uniform meaning. Every time one of the logos pop up, you are able to think of a way that you and someone halfway around the world are more  similiar than you could ever imagine.

Coming out on top

“Having two older brothers is a healthy reminder that you’re always closer to the bottom than you are to the top.” — Andy Roddick

Being at the lower end of the totem pole is usually not a good feeling. Whether you are last on the food chain or at the bottom of the corporate ladder, the feeling of being smothered by everyone and everything above you can be overwhelming.

I am finding myself at the very bottom of Google’s list of importance. There is not a whole lot of information about me out there on the internet, so I never expected to be on the first page of results when I searched for my name, but one would guess that paying for a little face time would make it slightly easier to be found. Apparently not.

This week I made a Google AdWords campaign for this blog. AdWords is yet another wonderful Google application that offers fairly inexpensive and easily manageable advertising to anyone with a Google account and a Web site.

Setting up an account is a standard step by step process that Google walks each user through. I chose to use the Starter Edition package since it was my first time doing any kind of online advertising. After writing my ad, choosing come keywords, and activating my account by picking my monthly budget the campaign was up and running.

My ad read: “Kristina Hall’s Blog — A fresh perspective on the widening use of social media”. I am not an advertising major, so coming up with an accurate and eye-catching description for my blog in only a few words was more difficult than I would have liked.

The keywords I used for my campaign were Kristina Hall, Kristina Hall’s New Media Blog, new media blog, student blog, and blog. According to my monthly budget ($50), my ad could appear on the search results for any of these keywords.

I like the idea behind Pay-Per-Click advertising — I don’t have to pay for my advertisement until someone actually clicks the link to my site. On top of having user-friendly pricing, AdWords itself is fairly easy to navigate around and it is exciting to see the number of times my ad is showing up when someone searches for one of my keywords.

However, right now I don’t really see a need to advertise for my blog. I’m not trying to find customers or provide a service to anyone, I’m just a first-time blogger learning the ropes of all this new media. I enjoyed learning about Google AdWords and think that it is an important tool for small businesses and non-profits to use in order to create awareness about themselves, but it just isn’t in my budget to continue running my campaign.

So until I read more of the information that is out there about being a SEO and Google AdWords expert, I will remain closer to the bottom of Google’s rankings than my older, wiser blogger siblings.

Get Creative

“To meet the energy challenge requires the most important energy of all–human creativity. That’s the real prize.” — Daniel Yergin

Blogging is becoming more popular by the day. I feel like almost everyone I know has a blog, whether it is personal or for a class or specifically geared towards a professional interest. And those people who don’t have a blog of their own religiously read someone else’s blog.

When there are blogs about every category and subcategory and microcategory it is becoming harder to stand out. This is where a little creativity can help win an audience.

When searching for a blog about new media and public relations I came across Media By Sistrunk. The author of this blog has 20 years of experience in the communication world and with that comes a lot of wisdom. However, in order to share her wisdom she has to find ways of being creative and keeping her audience’s attention.

One of her recent posts was specifically about blogging. The fact that I am hearing from several sources that blogging can be a positive influence on my career, it is really starting to sink in. I am a firm believer that blogging can work wonders for creative writers who want to make their mark on the world wide web.

So whether you want to make a blog about your travels abroad or your new move to big city, if you have to start a blog for a class assignment or just want to make a public record of all of your inspirational thoughts, I say do it. Start a blog and use it to your advantage. Because having your say out there for anyone to read is the best way to get noticed and maybe even stand out enough to be a prized possession in the blogosphere.

“By the time executives get married, take on a mortgage, raise kids, cope with the crabgrass, climb the corporate ladder, do their best to manage career pressures, build their net worth and get into their 40s, they’ve lost touch with what they believe in and care about most deeply.” –Allan Cox

As a college student, life can get very hectic. Between class, a social life, volunteering, homework, exercise and all other sorts of time commitments, I sometimes feel if eating and sleeping aren’t written into my day planner I would forget to make time for them.

Ok, maybe that is a little extreme, but the more things I get involved in the harder it is to remember all of my priorities. What is even worse is the terrible habit I have formed of double-booking myself, which is a direct result of my inability to memorize my schedule.

Recently, however, I have started organizing my life with the help of Google Calendar. This is just one of the many wonderful and useful applications that Google has to offer.

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I started using g-mail (Google’s webmail service) a little more than a year ago and it has revolutionized the way I receive and send e-mails. And even though I am a huge advocate for their e-mail system, I had never before played around with all of the other Google apps.

Google Calendar is exactly what a busy college student with numerous different schedules needs in order to keep his or her life on track. Actually, it is an incredible tool for anyone who is interested in easy, efficient organization.

One of the many helpful features of the calendar is the connection of your g-mail account to the calendar. When you receive an e-mail that is pertaining to an event at a specific date and time, Google Calendar recognizes the event and offers to add it to your calendar. It is as simple as that: checking your e-mail and updating your planner in a matter of minutes. Genius.

Being a visual person, my favorite part of the calendar is marking different obligations in different colors. This way I know what I have going on during my week according to my school work, social life, extracurriculars and miscellaneous categories.

My only complaint, so far, about Google Calendar is that I have to be at my computer to access it (this is because my cell phone doesn’t support a web browser). I think I would find the technology far more useful if I could check my calendar at any time. But I guess that just means I will have to start saving up for a Blackberry or an iPhone…

Now that I have started trying out more of the applications from Google, I think I will soon be standing atop my Google soapbox for everyone I know. I’ve already suggested to both of my roommates that they start using the calendar because then we could share calendars and be able to see what the upcoming week looked like when we are trying to plan each days’ dinner.

Besides the fact that Google has become an overwhelming force on the internet and is constantly coming up with new ways to out-do itself, I really believe that the goal behind all of Google’s features is making people’s every day on-line tasks simpler and easier to use so we don’t have to lose any part of ourselves in all of the media craze. Google is just trying to optimize the on-line experience so everyone can still have time to enjoy life’s pleasures and not lose touch.

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