Tag Archive | how-to

How to be (more) interesting

forbes_be_interesting

It’s Friday, the weekend (and Super Bowl XLVIII) abounds, you’ve got plans… Perhaps you’re off to a party, maybe preparing for an interview, perchance presenting at a conference. The common denominator being you’ve got to keep it interesting. Sound lofty? Au contraire, much of our day to day requires we captivate.

A few weeks ago we spoke with serial entrepreneur (and Wiley author) Larry Myler.  We interviewed Larry in regards to his large social media presence. When inquiring how to establish an online presence, he told us his secret which simply put is, “be interesting,” a tenant that in context may have stemmed from social media but in practice is universally applicable.

As enthralling as we most certainly all already are, a few tips never hurt. Forbes conveniently published a ten step guide (complete with sketches), reminding us how to stay fascinating. Check out a few of our favorite tips below:

  • Give it a shot: Try it out. Play around with a new idea. Do something strange. If you never leave your comfort zone, you won’t grow.
  • Embrace your innate weirdness: No one is normal. Everyone has quirks and insights unique to themselves. Don’t hide these things—they are what make you interesting.
  • Do something. Anything: Read. Write. Talk. Build. Network. Play. Help. Create. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you’re doing it.

Read How To Be More Interesting (In 10 Simple Steps) in full and check out all of Larry Myler’s tips in our recent interview.

Best Marketing Books of 2013

This past year saw the release of a wide variety of new marketing books. From “smart” marketing to targeted content and audience segmentation, many new and novel topics were explored between the pages.

Below are a few year-in-review lists. These lists are user-generated, sales generated, or created by website staff. There are some great suggestions next year’s reading list.

Did you read any great marketing books this past year? Post recommendations in the comments section below. 

And as the year comes to a close, it is a good time to reflect on the past 12 months. We hope this blog provided helpful information for self-promotion, social media sites, and publishing.

How to use infographs

In academic and corporate life, we are sometimes are tasked at creating presentations. Presentations can be time consuming and often end up bland and uninteresting. No matter how exciting the data may seem to you, it is sometimes hard to get pthers excited.

Engaging your audience is very important. In the past, we posted on slide design tools that can enhance a presentation and wrote a brief piece entitled “Illustrate your data.”

Today we are going to focus on infographs.

Infographs are graphic visual representations of data. They display complex information in an easily digestible way. They focus the viewer on larger trends and methodology. With a little bit of color, shape, and an interactive element, these graphic images can spice up your data and require zero design training.

Say you conducted a peer-survey and would like to share the results and trends. One type of chart, for example, can display the location of survey respondents on a world map.

Say you want to break down respondents by gender.  Well, there is an infographic for that! You can create a chart that uses male and female symbols to convey gender breakdowns.

These are two examples where it is  easier to digest data through an infograph (instead of just a simple bar or pie graph). 

With interactive tools, you can also create dynamic charts that instantly segment data.

Infographs are not always appropriate. Keep the audience in mind as well as the type of data. Infographs display data trends. They do not focus on tiny numerical details.

Here are some sites to check out:

Many sites require subscriptions and each site may work differently. So take a tour and browse through instructions and frequently asked questions. If you find value in data visualizations, these tools could be easily integrated into presentations.  Some people even use sites like Vizualize.me to create dynamic, visual resumes.

Related links: 

[edited by wileyauthor2 12/1]

Where to start with Tumblr

This is icon for social networking website. Th...

This is icon for social networking website. This is part of Open Icon Library’s webpage icon package. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tumblr is a free blogging site that allows you to share both images and text with ease.  Text formatting is done automatically and the layout is minimal. There is room for customization. But mostly Tumblr is just an easy platform to share whatever with whomever.

Mashable has quite a few posts about this blogging site.

First, check out this beginner’s guide. It outlines what to do once you create a Tumblr page, how to customize that page, and how the dashboard works. 

There is also a Tumblr starter guide that features a slideshow of popular Tumblrs. 

Once you become an expert, check out 11 tips for power-users.

Here are some more general tips:

  • Since Tumblr heavily relies on tags so browse through existing Tumblrs to get a feel for what others are posting about. 
  • Start by familiarizing yourself with the posting tools and other basic functions.
  •  Use the “follow” function to subscribe to other blogs.
  • Tumblr also has a strong mobile app so you can post on the go. If this is something you are interested in doing, download the app for your mobile and try it out.

Mashable’s beginners guide to SoundCloud

<SoundCloud_thumb.jpg>

Image from Mashable

If you already have a podcast or are interested in creating one for the first time, check out Mashable’s Beginner’s Guide to SoundCloud.

With a variety of subscription levels, it is easy to find something that will fit your needs.  A majority of the members use the site to host and distribute  music or podcasts. The functionality allows you to embed audio clips on to other sites, as well.  

From a customer experience standpoint, the streaming is seamless and clean, especially with the popular commenting functionality inside the audio player. 

 

 

Keywords and Lady Gaga’s sunglasses, SEO Part 2

This is the second post in our SEO series.  Written by Anne-Marie Green, marketing manager at Wiley, this post is about the importance of keywords and how to use them effectively.

+ + + 

In my last post, “The good news and bad news with SEO,” I mentioned keywords a lot.  In fact, I was saying “keywords” so much that it was getting downright boring.  I really wanted to stress their importance however. In this post I want to give you more hands-on advice on how to choose keywords for your article title, your abstract, and the keywords section of your article.

With this being said, search engine optimization (SEO) is a moving target.  Google, which receives about 80 percent of online search that takes place, regularly changes its algorithms, leaving us sprinting to catch up.  So, I want to clue you in on a couple more things beyond keywords as they relate to article SEO.

Do you ever browse eBay or etsy?  If so, surely you’ve come across something like this:

<SEO_on_Ebay.jpg>

I’m not saying you’re browsing for Lady Gaga-style sunglasses (and no judgment if you are), but you’ve probably seen these strings of somewhat unrelated keywords stuffed into product descriptions.  Sometimes they’re downright funny.  Well, Google has made updates recently to try to see beyond these strings of keyword bait.  Nowadays, Google is looking for natural connections between keywords and the page (or article’s) content.

So how best to choose keywords? 

  1. Think about what someone might search on to find your article.  The phrase or first 3 or 4 words that first pop into your head may be what you should lead your article title with.
  2. Use a tool to help. You can easily use Google’s Keyword Planner or RankChecker  (you’ll have to sign up for a free registration for these) to find out which terms related to your article’s subject matter are popular keywords or search terms.
  3. Make sure the keywords you choose accurately reflect the content of your article.  This is a no-brainer, but you don’t want to plug in keywords that have really strayed from your article’s content.  Remember those “natural connections” to your content that I mentioned Google is looking for when crawling webpages.
  4. Use the keywords field to your advantage.  Make sure you use this field to your advantage when submitting your paper.  You not only need your keywords from the article title and abstract, but also synonyms.  Is there another name or acronym for a concept, study, compound, etc, that you’re featuring in your research?  Include it here!
  5. Repeat keywords in your abstract in ways that make sense.  It’s important to repeat your keywords in your article abstract of course, but, once again, make sure they are still used in a way that achieves your primary objective, which should be to briefly communicate the content of your article.

I hope this is useful and if you’re interested in the sunglasses, check in with ebay.

Using your Twitter bio smartly

 

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

 

This week’s New York Times Cultural Studies is quite relevant for authors.

The Twitter bio is a postmodern art form, an opportunity in 160 characters or fewer to cleverly synopsize one’s professional and personal accomplishments, along with a carefully edited non sequitur or two. It lets the famous and the anonymous, athletes and accountants, surreal Dadaists and suburban dads alike demonstrate that they are special snowflakes with Wes Anderson-worthy quirks.

– From Twitter Bios and What They Really Say

The article points out the Twitter bio behaviors of famous people (“The more famous one is, the less the need for straightforwardness,” as the article bluntly states).  One must strike a delicate balance between self-promotion and sincerity.  

Example:See Lady Gaga’s capitalized imperative: “Buy my new single ‘Applause’ and pre-order my album ‘Artpop’ here now!”

Of course, this bio feeds into Lady Gaga’s public persona.  But if you are not the type to aggressively self promote, migrate these types of announcements to your individual Tweets.

Keep it simple.  If you try to say too much, the bio will probably just come out as confusing.  If you use a few key words (example: “author. scholar. father. boating enthusiast” for example) you will get your point across coherently.

Remember, bios can be updated whenever you desire.  So if you would like to a promote something, make sure the information is up to date.  No one likes to see old news from their Twitter friends.

Like the profile picture, the bio is another one of the “small details” of Twitter.  With the right wording, you can make this 160 character bio shine.