Monday, August 31, 2015

How To Write High Traffic Business Blog Posts

How do you write effective blog posts for a business? 

What kinds of content are going to connect with customers? 

What types of topics are most popular?

What do customers want to read about on a business blog?

First, you have to understand the intended audience for your business, their needs, problems, and interests. 

Next, you have to deeply understand the business and what appeals to customers. 

Then, you have to be aware of hot news items that relate to the company's products and the problems they solve.

I will now list the 10 most popular blog posts (according to Google) on my client's Davis Dental Diary.

Then I'll explain the marketing strategy behind them and why these are getting such high traffic.

You can apply the same principles to your own business blog.


Top 10 Blog Posts of Davis Dental Diary



(1) Same Day Dentures and Other Dubious Dental Services


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/08/same-day-dentures-and-other-dubious.html


(2) Cecil the Lion -- A Peoria Dentist Responds


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/08/cecil-lion-peoria-dentist-responds.html


(3) How To Evaluate a Dentist


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/05/how-to-evaluate-dentist.html


(4) Kavo DIAGNOdent Cavity Detector


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/05/kavo-diagnodent-cavity-detector.html


(5) Contact Us


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/04/contact-us.html


(6) Brush Your Teeth and Get More Dates VIDEO


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/05/brush-your-teeth-and-get-more-dates.html


(7) Teeth Whitening -- Some Basic Facts


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/04/teeth-whitening-some-basic-facts.html


(8) Our Dental Services


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/04/our-dental-services.html


(9) Why I Became a Dentist


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/04/why-i-became-dentist.html


(10) Basic Facts About Fluoride


http://davisdentaldiary.blogspot.com/2015/05/basic-facts-about-fluoride.html



*********************


Marketing Strategy Behind the Top 10 Blog Posts




(1) "Same Day Dentures and Other Dubious Dental Services" addresses the issue of "fast food" type corporate dental chains, without mentioning any of them by name.


This type of competition has launched massive amounts of TV commercials and online ads, thus must be confronted aggressively. In many cases, these quota driven enterprises are treating patients like cash cows and not delivering good work.


(2) "Cecil the Lion -- a Peoria Dentist Responds" ties in with my #1 SEO tactic: tie in with something that is already viral, a trending news topic in your field.


(3) "How To Evaluate a Dentist" is sharing expertise. People are always looking for good, inside advice on how to select a product or a provider of services. "How To" offers a promise and a benefit to patients.


(4) "Kavo DIAGNOdent Cavity Detector" appeals to the geeks, those who like to know about high tech gadgets. This dentist uses the slogan, "Pain free, affordable, high tech dentistry" so it's relevant to his niche.


(5) "Contact Us" is a bit unexpected to be ranking so high. What this indicates to me is that patients arriving at this blog are highly motivated to take the next step and initiate contact with his office, to set up an appointment.


(6) "Brush Your Teeth and Get More Dates VIDEO" is a funny but realistic cartoon video. It teaches good dental hygiene, while also providing a powerful motivation to keep your teeth in good shape. Again, here's a compelling appeal to a desired result that patients are seeking.


(7) "Teeth Whitening -- Some Basic Facts" ties in with a tremendously popular issue. Teeth whitening is something that is already a viral, trending topic, so people who proceed logically want to learn about it before they take any action with a home kit or a dentist visit.


(8) "Our Dental Services" appeals to patients who want to know what can be done by the dentist. The services themselves are hot keywords, so this post is good for SEO.


(9) "Why I Became a Dentist" is based on the fact that people prefer to do business with providers they know, like, and trust. By explaining his decision to become a dentist, potential patients get to know, like, and hopefully trust this dentist. Plus, people are nosy and like to pry into the minds of others, if only out of simple curiosity.


(10) "Basic Facts About Fluoride" ties in with an issue that is already viral, another trending topic. Fluoride has been in the news a lot recently, with anti-fluoride health-minded individuals questioning the safety of the amounts of fluoride in drinking water and toothpaste (look at the warnings on your tube of fluoride toothpaste.)


While there are many other social media marketing principles I could discuss, these are enough to get you going in the right direction.

Remember: tie in with topics that are already viral, share expertise, and write posts that humanize, personalize, and make your company more known, liked, and trusted.





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Monday, August 24, 2015

Photography is Subjective and Will Not Submit to Any Rules



Who decides what good photography is?

Nobody. Each of us has our own tastes. Experts can tell us some basic principles and aesthetic values, but it still comes down to personal preferences.

Here's a funny comment thread I saw on the Urban Street Photography group page on Facebook.

QUOTE

Juliet Rake:

Without pointing to any images in particular, I have a general comment to make.

I'm not sure if it's the abomination of HDR, or other light altering software programs, but many of the images I'm seeing lately on this site have an unearthly quality...metal looking flesh on hands; odd, shadowless landscapes; over sharpened edges.....

I, being an old lady with taste formed in the heyday of film based street photography, frankly dislike these images....they do not illuminate, they distort and obscure reality.....so I said it....my two cents.


Gina Brake [admin]:

You are entitled to your two cents, but we welcome all street photography related photos here, and while you may not personally like whichever picture(s) you're commenting on, the person who made them liked them enough that they wanted to share it with us in this group.

That should always be kept in mind when not providing constructive criticism.


Steven Edward Streight:

I dislike most HDR photos, but if people like to do that, it's fine with me. We all have our own tastes and preferences.

I also prefer close up photos and faces, rather than distant and backs. But I would never try to act like my preferences are something others must submit to! :-)


Alfredo Louro:

I respond more to photographs that show people interacting with each other and with their environment.

Often, a photo that captures my attention is one that tells a story. I don't think any of this needs special effects.

There are the classic images by Cartier-Bresson, or Dorothea Lange, to name but two, long before Photoshop or HDR.

My impression is that when an image is too heavily processed, the processing technique becomes the subject of the photo, and it is a subject that has little interest for me.

So I agree. The human interest should be front and center. The technique should be almost invisible.


Steven Edward Streight:

To borrow a quote from "Stewart Saves His Family" film, we're shoulding all over ourselves.

Nobody is the God of Photography who dictates the Eternal Laws of Correct Image Making.

Many incredible photos have no emotion, don't tell any kind of story, and are all about the processing. What really matters if you like a photo or not. If you don't like an image, you don't have to look at it.

It's really that simple!

END QUOTE



P.S. I prefer destructive criticism of my work.

"Constructive criticism" is for wimps, it means trying really hard not to be confrontational. It's what you have to give to narcissists and crybabies.

I don't learn much from praise or "constructive criticism." I do try to be nice and soft and sweet to others, but for myself, you can be as harsh and ornery as you want.

I had this exact discussion with the Blucheck art group today, quite a coincidence!


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Ashley Madison secret adultery site hacked




Congratulations to the Impact Team hackers. You have successfully breached the inner workings of the sleazy  website Ashley Madison-- and now the participants are being made public.

The site was a scam anyway, loaded with thousands of fake "hot" woman profiles, to lure the philandering dogs and sleazy husbands.

The website proclaims:

QUOTE

Ashley Madison is the world's leading married dating service for discreet encounters.

Trusted Security Award.

SSL Secure Site.

As seen on: Hannity, Howard Stern, TIME, BusinessWeek, Sports Illustrated, Maxim, USA Today,


END QUOTE


Click on image below for LARGER view.



I'm opposed to revealing phone numbers and credit card data, but the idea of attacking an immoral website is something that I find quite interesting. 

Impact Team has declared that they hate secret adultery and have every intent to wipe Ashley Madison off the face of the earth. It looks like they're accomplishing their goal. Those who rush to defend Ashley Madison make themselves look bad. It's a real circus right now.

I'm amused by the scandal revolving around the hacking of the Ashley Madison site. This is a website where married people could have an affair by hooking up with people. Gay, straight, and every type of sexual persuasion was accommodated.

What's really cool is that government and military people are involved in this sleazy site and will now be exposed. In the military, adultery is a serious criminal offense. The late night comics are set with joke material for the rest of the year.

Which pastors, priests, Congressmen, CEOs, teachers, police and other authority figures will be revealed as unfaithful in the coming days? 

I can't wait to find out the names of our "beloved leader" scumbags involved in this cheaters site. This is going to be very exciting. Clandestine affairs of "family values" politicians are going to be the butt of many jokes, excuse the pun!

If you have an "open marriage" and your spouse has agreed to extra-marital affairs, that's fine with me. But if you're sneaking around in the shadows, concealing your betrayal, your karma is about to ripen.





QUOTE

Researchers are still poring over the unusually large dump, but already they say it includes user names, first and last names, and hashed passwords for 33 million accounts, partial credit card data, street names, and phone numbers for huge numbers of users, records documenting 9.6 million transactions, and 36 million e-mail addresses. 

While much of the data is sure to correspond to anonymous burner accounts, it's a likely bet many of them belong to real people who visited the site for clandestine encounters. For what it's worth, more than 15,000 of the e-mail addresses are hosted by US government and military servers using the .gov and .mil top-level domains.

The leak also includes PayPal accounts used by Ashley Madison executives, Windows domain credentials for employees, and a large number of proprietary internal documents. Also found: huge numbers of internal documents, memos, org charts, contracts, sales techniques, and more.

"The biggest indicators to legitimacy comes from these internal documents, much containing sensitive internal data relating to the server infrastructure, org charts, and more," TrustedSec researcher Dave Kennedy wrote in a blog post. "This is much more problematic as it's not just a database dump, this is a full scale compromise of the entire companies [sic] infrastructure including Windows domain and more."

END QUOTE

-- Ars Technica "Ashley Madison Hack is Not Only Real, It's Worse Than We Thought"

http://arstechnica.com/security/2015/08/ashley-madison-hack-is-not-only-real-its-worse-than-we-thought/


Gawker states that Josh Duggar apparently had an Ashley Madison account:

QUOTE

Someone using a credit card belonging to a Joshua J. Duggar, with a billing address that matches the home in Fayetteville, Arkansas owned by his grandmother Mary—a home that was consistently shown on their now-cancelled TV show, and in which Anna Duggar gave birth to her first child—paid a total of $986.76 for two different monthly Ashley Madison subscriptions from February of 2013 until May of 2015.

END QUOTE














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Monday, August 10, 2015

10 Facebook Hacks to Improve Your Social Media Experience



Here are 10 Facebook hacks I discovered on my own, that can greatly improve your experience.

(1) Hold the Shift key down and then Enter to create paragraph breaks in a comment. It's so much better than a dense block of hard to read text.

(2) When you type in someone's name in a comment, and the full name becomes a link, you can backspace out the middle and last name, so only the first name appears, but remains a link.

(3) When I post an update, often an organization's name, and sometimes a person's name, will not automatically become a link. Post it anyway, then Edit the update, and delete the name and retype it.

Then it will become a link, for some reason.

(4) Remember you can Edit a comment. Do this rather than post a second comment, correcting a typo or whatever.

Go to your comment, on the level of your name, and all the way to the upper right corner. A pencil will appear, with tool tip "Edit or Delete". Click on Edit and fix the typo.

(5) When you type in a person's or organization's name in a post, and it didn't turn into a link, you can also just Edit the post and position the cursor next to the last letter of the name and that will make the name a link.

(6) You don't see posts from people when you fail to interact with their posts. Instead of complaining about that, start clicking Like, Share, and Comment on their posts.

That will tell Facebook that you care about what they're posting and Facebook will oblige you by putting more of their posts in your Newsfeed.

(7) Check your Groups category in left sidebar frequently. People can add you to their groups without your permission and if you don't pay attention, you may have some weird, irrelevant groups listed in your left sidebar, which may make you look bad.

(8) NEVER persist in just Sharing posts from others, or those fluffy inspirational quotes all the time. If you rarely express your own thoughts, people will start to not care about your Facebook updates.

(9) Political posts, attacks against Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump or Obama or Bernie or Elizabeth or Jeb Bush, or mockery of Republican or Democrat party -- ???

They really don't accomplish anything at all.

What they do is alienate people who like you but disagree with you politically. They don't change anybody's mind or educate anybody.

People do their own political research and come to their own conclusions. A Facebook post is not going to convert anybody to anything.

You're preaching to the choir or angering the ideologically intolerant.

(10) NEVER send Friend Requests to interesting people with shared interests -- unless you first send them a private FB message telling them why you want to connect, what you have in common.

Facebook explicitly commands us to send Friend Requests ONLY to people you really know in real life.

So start the knowing with a private message -- or click Like or Share on some of their posts, or post some comments.

THEN the stranger with shared interests will be more likely to accept your Friend Request, rather than reporting you to Facebook, who will then suspend your ability to send Friend Requests to anybody for a while.
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Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Principles of Street Photography


"Final Call"

© 2015 Steven Edward Streight


Here's my advice to someone on Street Photography of the World who said she was new to street photography and wanted some tips.

Principles of Street Photography

(1) Faces are more interesting than backs.

(2) Up close is more interesting than long range.

(3) People are more interesting than most things.

(4) The timing of the photographic moment is more important than a perfectly framed shot. Sometimes random, from the hip photos capture something you had not even noticed as you were walking.

(5) Try to frame each photo perfectly, while keeping rule #4 in mind.

(6) Most people won't care or even notice that you're taking their photo. With cell phone cameras and selfies clicking all the time, street photographers are no big deal.

(7) Often people will see you taking photographs, and will holler at you, "Take a photo of me!" I always ask, jokingly, "Why? Are you a celebrity?" If they say, yes, I will not take their photo.

(8) A person doing something is more interesting than a group of people just walking or standing around.

(9) A photo says that the object is important in some way. Thus a street photograph of a random person conveys the idea that this random person is on the same visual level as a queen.

(10) Celebrate the random person. Honor the average Joe. Dignify the plain Jane. Focus on the downtrodden. Elevate the typical individual to star status. Average people are infinitely superior to celebrities and elites.

(11) Even though legally speaking, any person in public can be photographed at any time, use discretion. Sometimes asking permission is the polite thing to do. Other times, it's not expedient and could ruin a photo opp.

(12) Whenever possible, hand a business card to the person you photograph, tell them to friend you on Facebook where they'll see their photo.

(13) If you ask a person if you can take their photo, and they say no, say okay, and don't ask why or try to coax the person. They may have valid personal reasons and they don't owe you any explanation. Respect their wishes.

(14) You enforce democracy by taking photos of what's going on around you. You also increase the visual sensitivity and perceptual acuity of those who view your photographs, defining for them what is "photo worthy" by your selections of what to take photos of.












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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Get a Dog, Get a Life




ASPCA poster at PAWS. "Get a dog, get a life."

The wonderful joy of a dog companion, member of the family, treated like the prince of the property, your loyal ally and protector!

When you realize in your heart how much you sincerely LOVE your dog, it is kind of scary.

You realize that this creature with the intelligence of a 2 year old human child has captured your innermost being with an extreme positive attachment.

He seems to be an actual part of you, not a separate being.

He is your son in every sense of the word, aside from how he was born.

You have adopted him, chosen him, and learned how to be nice to him, patient, soft, gentle, and always encouraging him, praising him, talking to him like a human pal.

You sing songs to him, use repeated phrases at specific times, making his world reassured and regular.

You do your utmost to give him a paradise on earth, making his life full of happiness and positive expectations.

Every day is a good day for your dog as long as you're there, with your dog, and cheerfully greeting him upon returning from an absence. He shows his contentment and fondness, just in the way he looks at you or the way he smiles as he takes a nap on your pillow.

Inter-species companionship, mutual love and kindness, a strong emotional bonding, delight in each other's company -- are an amazing gift to both pet and parent-owner.

Training your dog. Protecting him from unleashed dogs. Giving him medical care and a good diet. Buying him toys and jackets and hoodies.

Going off on wild adventures and explorations. From forests to bright city lights. To rivers and fountains and parks.

Taking your little guy along with you, as an equal partner, inside various homes, stores, offices, festivals, visits with neighbors who also have a dog or cat.

Putting him on a parked motorcycle for a photo opp.

Providing varied sensory stimulation by transporting him to new locales and including him on every household activity, whenever possible.

Teaching your dog words, commands, maneuvers, games.

Talking intimately as he looks at you with attempted understanding.

Being surprised at all the words he recognizes and responds to: go for a walk, go see mommy, go see daddy, doggie doctor, bone, dog toy, go night night on the big bed, poo poo pee pee outside, water, doggie treat, yes, no, go home, get on the sidewalk, cars, icky, good boy, whoo whoo whoo (for a remarkable achievement), okay, sorry, go bye bye in the car, go to the bridge (Schmoeger Park), names of other dogs in the neighborhood.

Bonding with a good dog, whose personality meshes with your own in surprising ways, is one of the greatest satisfactions in life.

If you have the opportunity to comfortably accommodate, pay the bills for, and lovingly care for a dog, please go to PAWS and rescue one today.

Buddy Streight the Minpin, we love you with all our hearts,

Mommy and Daddy













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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Troll Check List



How can you spot, destroy, and delete an internet troll?


Reddit CEO says trolls are winning and taking over debate forums and social platforms.

 No. That's not true.

Trolls can be defined, identified, monitored, and dealt with via blogocombat, banning, and blocking.

What are the characteristics and behaviors that brand someone an internet troll, a griefer, a trouble-maker?

I compiled the following facts to guide your understanding of trollish activity.

 Troll Check List 


 * rarely links to substantiating resources

 * copies and pastes lengthy chunks of articles he found online, scholarly text you're pretty certain he didn't write himself (since it's free of hysteria and cuss words)

 * anonymous or near-anonymous, has obviously fake name, no photo of face for avatar, or no updates on his own profile, so he clearly joined a social platform just to annoy and disrupt conversations

 * gets angry quickly and betrays his paranoia when he misinterprets even your smiley faces as "condescending" and treating him "like a child."

 * launches into personal attacks like that's what they were leading up to

 * is quick to start calling anybody who disagrees with him an "idiot" or "moron" or "watch too much Faux News" or "read too much Huffington Post"

 * uses filthy language

* quick to put you into some ideological group, then attack that group, e.g., "you church people are all the same" or "you atheists never make sense" or "I bet you voted for Bush" or "here comes another libtard."

 * often sexist or racist

* has a teenage immaturity, very sensitive, extremely brutal in unreasonable retaliations, a delicate ego based on pampering, resulting in severely limited logic skills and self-absorbed grandiosity

 * will argue as hatefully against a woman or child as against a male or a peer, thus: has no personal standards of what is socially appropriate

 * thinks he's the only one with all the right answers, similar to a garden variety cult leader or brainwashed group member

* may even tell you his IQ number or list his college degrees, or jobs supposedly held, or make similar insecure, pompously funny assertions of being smarter than everybody else, especially you

 * rushes to conclusions that he can then get angry about

* won't chill out because he's putting on a show for his Red Bulled buddies

 * likes to twist what you say, as though you have bad intentions, or puts words in your mouth, making absurd allegations of what you imply or what you "must also believe"

 * frequently blames everything on the Jews or Muslims or Republicans or Democrats or capitalism or socialism

 * makes wild accusations like they've had too much lucid dreaming, bath salts, and fake pot

 * relentlessly keeps hammering away at an argument, even after you've stopped responding and have moved on

 * will, if you annoy the troll enough, turning the tables on him, eventually get exasperated, and instead of saying something like "well, let's just agree to disagree" says "you're all a bunch of retards. I'm done with this conversation." -- thus you de-fanged the troll and caused him to kick himself out of the online discussion, when his whole point was to be sadistic and hurt people's feelings and mock their opinions.