Archive for August, 2011

Are You Losing Sales By Giving Customers Too Many Choices?

Did you know that giving customers too many choices can overwhelm and lead to fewer sales?

It’s true.

I experienced this firsthand at an eye-catching gelato shop located in Santa Monica, California.

It caught my eye because of the insane number of flavors visible through the outside window. There were over 100 in all. The assorted flavor colors were so mesmerizing, I had to go in to get some gelato…

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Top of page bid estimates

We’re excited to announce a new metric in AdWords, top of page bid estimates, to provide additional assistance in optimizing your ads to show above the search results. Analogous to first page bid estimates, this metric approximates the cost-per-click (CPC) bid needed for your ad to appear regularly in the top positions above the search results.
This feature compliments the new “Top vs. side” report segment, which allows you to see how your ads perform above and to the side of Google search results…

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Japanese Celebrity Calls for an End to Tweeting after Demos Erupt

href=""> class="size-full wp-image-4943 alignright" title="Fuji Television Headquarters in Odaiba, Tokyo (photo courtesy of Mark J. Nelson)" src="" alt="Japanese Celebrities Fuji TV Korean Programs Twitter Demonstration" width="300" height="200" />

It was only a matter of time before it happened, but overwhelmed with the sudden and sometimes overwhelming impact that their tweets had on society, some Japanese celebrities are now calling on other celebrities to stop using Twitter.

As social networking websites penetrate every society around the world, every country will at some point be dealing with a variety of issues regarding href="" target="_blank">invasion of privacy, href="" target="_blank">employees getting fired because of their use (or perceived misuse) of social media, and even title="Twitter Goes to Court : The Courtney Love Twitter Defamation Case" href="" target="_blank">defamation lawsuits from a tweet.   title="6 Proof Points that Japan is Leading the US on Twitter" href="" target="_blank">In Japan, Twitter has become the rage and even title="Facebook in Japan: Will It Blend?" href="" target="_blank">Facebook is still challenged in its competition with Mixi to make deeper inroads.  From my own interviews with social media influencers in the Land of the Rising Sun, the use of Twitter seems to be split between professionals who see it as a business tool as well as teens and twenty-somethings who want to follow the latest tweets of the famous celebrities that are so ubiquitous in Japanese society – almost every television, radio, or print ad for a consumer brand seems to feature a famous celebrity.  In fact, similar to the United States, many of the passionate adopters of Twitter have been these same celebrities.

But then something happened – public demonstrations organically started from the act of one tweet from a celebrity. id="more-4939">

href="!/tkok_sosk_8228" target="_blank">Sosuke Takaoka, a 29-year old Japanese actor with more than 140,000 Twitter followers, posted a tweet on July 23 that read,

Honestly, I’ve been treated well by Channel 8 ( href="" target="_blank">Fuji TV), but I really don’t watch them anymore.  I often think it’s a Korean television station.  We Japanese want to see traditional Japanese shows.  Whenever I see a Korean show on the air I turn off the TV.  ^^ Goodbye.

The tweet was in reference to the popularity of Korean television drama shows on Japanese TV, but Takaoka centered his attention on one of the most popular TV networks in Japan, Fuji TV.  Furthermore, there is obvious historic tension between the two countries.  Either way, because Twitter has become the place where the news breaks in Japan as much as it does globally now, the tweet started to gain attention on what could be considered Japan’s first and still very popular social media website: the href="" target="_blank">2 Channel message board forum.  This forum is still the 21st most visited website in Japan according to

The above started a chain reaction where Fuji TV began to be flooded by phone call complaints, and even new complaints from consumers were mentioned in social media because of what was perceived as poor customer service by Fuji TV who didn’t have enough operators to deal with the sudden upsurge in phone inquiries.  Some consumers called out for a boycott of companies that were advertising on Fuji TV.  Finally, on August 7th, a demonstration against Fuji TV at their headquarters was held that attracted 2,500 people.  Although that number might sound small, through the power of social media, the videos that were uploaded to the Japanese version of YouTube, href="" target="_blank">Nico Nico Douga, as well as uStream have had cumulative views of more than 100,000.  The demo organizers are calling for another one on August 21 which could attract far more people than the first.

While the above is an excellent case study of how social media and our present connectivity can lead to social disorder, as we have seen recently in many parts of the world, some celebrities are calling for a boycott against Twitter.

href="" target="_blank">Takashi Okamura, one of the two comedians who form the popular duo of href="" target="_blank">99, recently appeared onTV where href="" target="_blank">he mentioned this tweet and said,

The problem is that you tweet.  If you don’t want to see the TV programs, don’t watch them.  Why do you have to tell everyone?  The cost of watching TV is only in the electricity that you consume, so why do you need to tweet about it?

Since the original tweet, Takaoka has had his contract cancelled by his talent agency and recently issued a public apology.  Unfortunately with the power of Twitter, many learn their lesson until it is after the fact and the damage is done.  In fact, there is a Japanese Wikipedia page that has already been created and documents the above facts called href="" target="_blank">Fuji TV’s Korean Broadcasting Issue.

As I have mentioned in many href="" target="_blank">Twitter blog posts, href="" target="_blank">the world is watching you on Twitter.   The combination of the public nature of Twitter, the fact that most media outlets (and many companies) have their antennas tuned to our tweets, and the fact that social media has greatly accelerated the speed of communication means that no one’s tweets are safe.

The lesson to be learned, whether you are a celebrity, a business, or a professional, is that you need to create a new “public persona” and stick to it when you say anything on any social media website.  I actually speak about this in my new href="" target="_blank">LinkedIn marketing book where I give the following advice:

It’s easy to say that in creating your public persona you should avoid putting certain things in your profile, but because social media is, well, social, we’re frequently tempted to say things that may catch us off our public brand. Before you post something in any social media channel that may be controversial and therefore affect your future business prospects, ask yourself the following four questions:

  • Would my family approve of this?
  • Would my boss approve of this?
  • Would all of my customers approve of this?
  • Would a court of law approve of this?

Unless you can answer “yes” to all four of these questions, keep your public persona intact by simply not posting your opinions on the Internet.

If only I had a chance to have met Takaoka-san before that tweet.

Have you had, or heard of, an instance where you or someone that you know regretted saying something in social media and are now paying the price for it?  Please share your experiences in the comments section below!

Windmill Networking Blog

Our favorite tweets of the week Aug 22-Aug 28, 2011

Every week we tweet a lot of interesting stuff highlighting great content that we find on the web that can be of interest to web designers.

The best way to keep track of our tweets is simply to follow us on Twitter, however, in case you missed some here’s a quick and useful compilation of the best tweets that we sent out this past week.

Note that this is only a very small selection of the links that we tweeted about, so don’t miss out…

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All About Identity Theft Protection

When someone hears the term identity theft, they get scared by this term. Others just simply shrug it off. Maybe it’s because they don’t understand much about preventing identity theft and you might be one of those people who shrug it off. If this is you, there are some things that you should know about this issue for it is an important one.

First of all, how many of you know what identity theft actually is? Not many actually do. This is when someone steals your personal information without you even knowing and uses it without your permission to scam people or create fraud. This could be your Social Security number that they have taken or something more.

Mainly, the way people can steal your identity is by learning of your Social Security number. However, some can get them from credit cards or other things that have your personal information. That is why it is suggested that if you are going to throw things away, you should really shred the information so no one can get access to your information. What you will find is that identity theft is described when anyone uses any of your personal information without you even knowing it to defraud the systems.

There are ways to see if you are one of the victims of this sort of theft. One of the ways you can do this is by monitoring your bill statements. This way you can tell them if you find that you did not make a purchase and you can question it. Sometimes you might forget one or two, however, with that being said, you won’t forget the big ones. You also need to monitor your credit score.

What a fraud alert will do is notify authorities if your information including your Social Security number is used. When this happens, if they find that your identity is used, they will step in. The person who is caught will be given time in prison for stealing your identity. From there, you will want to close the accounts that have been used.

The ways that you can look to see if this has happened to you is first, look at your bills. See if they are charging you for charges that you are sure that you made. If there is something you aren’t so sure about, then you need to call them and question it. The other thing is that you need to keep an eye on your credit score. You are allowed one free copy a year.

If you think that your identity has been stolen, you need to report this. When you do this and file a police report, you need to report this to the people that you have accounts with. They will put a fraud alert out so that if anything of yours is used, they will flag it. If they catch the person, the person will be in legal trouble big time.

When it comes to identity protection, you don’t want to play around. If this happens to you, you know to go to the police and you know to shut down your accounts. It’s important that if you can’t find a card, you cancel that account and many other things that you can do to help yourself. If not, you might be the next statistic.

SearchCap: The Day In Search, August 26, 2011

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

From Search Engine Land:

  • Google Signals Upcoming Algorithm Change, Asks For Help With Scraper Sites

    Google is calling for help in identifying a long-running problem: scraper sites in its search results — and particularly scraper sites that are ranking higher than the original page…

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SearchCap: The Day In Search, August 25, 2011

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

From Search Engine Land:

  • Think Global — But Make Your Ads Local

    Find out how to maximize your performance in international PPC campaigns – watch this webcast: “Global Domination through PPC: What you MUST know to succeed internationally.“ Watch this webcast now!

  • Google Adds 100+ Domains, Signals Plans For National Small Biz Push

    Google appears to be readying plans to roll out its “Get Your Business Online” program across the U…

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An Understanding Of Guard Dog ID

Identity theft is one of the major problems facing people today. If your identity gets stolen, whoever has stolen it can ruin your credit and run up tons of bills in your name. It can be an expensive and frustrating problem to solve. It is possible to protect yourself from identity theft and there are several ways that you can do that. This article will focus on the features of one of these methods called Guard Dog ID.

One of the leading methods of Identity Theft is data breaching and it occurs thousands of times each and every day. These breaches are like an open door and a thief can just walk right in and take any information that they want. There is a feature included in all packages that monitors databases and tells customers who are in danger of breaches.

This program may be able to tell you if any of your daily activities increase your risk. You can fill out paper that will ask questions about your daily routine. The program will analyze it and tell you anything that you can change to protect yourself better.

Spyware programs can steal information from your computer and they can be installed into your computer if you visit a site that contains it. More information is lost this way than any other way. There is a program that will be installed onto your computer that will detect and destroy any spyware programs that try to gain access to your computer.

Computer viruses can be designed to do a lot of things. This includes destroying and stealing the information that is on your computer. Even if nothing is stolen, they can cause a lot of damage that would be very expensive to fix. When new viruses are detected, you and any other members will receive an alert telling you about the virus. This will enable you to protect your computer better.

Children get lost and go missing everyday. This can be frightening to the parent that has it happen. This program will send alerts to every member in your area describing the missing child and anyone who might be with them. This will make it harder for anyone to take the child and get away and make it easier for the child to be found safely.

Sex offenders are required to register their home addresses with the local authorities. This program will ensure that you know where all the sex offenders in your area are and it will alert you if a new one moves into your area. This will make it easier to keep your family safe.

There are several options available to anyone who wants to protect their identity with Guard Dog ID. This overview should help to provide the information that you will need to make an informed and knowledgeable decision for protection identity theft protection. You should always carefully research any options that are available before making any decision on the one that you want. You want to ensure that the program you choose meets all the needs of you and your family.

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