Online storage & Murphy’s law

I want to be device independent and don’t want to wear any hardware on me for any data. Yeah, the cloud. Such a lovely place. It is the place for me fo:

  • Email (duh)
  • Upload my pictures immediately when I go into a wifi connection with Dropbox.
  • Address book in (still searching for what once could do, my personal social CRM)
  • All my notes i write in Evernote (changed it from Google Drive – much easier to connect with f.e. IFTTT, easy to search and )
  • All my documents in Dropbox. All Sync on
  • To do list / actionlist with rememberthemilk
  • My music playlist is on Spotify- access all the time.

And that has an impact on:

Paper is gone.

Search is really important. Everything can be archieved.

Place is irrelevant. Place is not important anymore; no matter where you are. You can do what you want to do with an computer, machine, smartphone or whatever.
(That’s what i also like the cleanness of a Chromebook. in 10 seconds it is in full working mode. almost no local storage, all online) 

Internet must be perfect.

And because of that we can be really efficient, but at the same time Murphy’s Law will be more likely because we assume to be so efficient.

Forget Google Form, forget SurveyMonkey. Go with TypeForm.

Asking for feedback is the best you can do. And speaking for myself: done too little. A way to do it is with quality sessions and talk for hours what can be done better. Or just ask if the customer wants to promote the service or product afterwards. There is a whole research market in between.

Anyway. Not a discussion I want to go into. Because I am just not knowledgeable enough in that exact field. But todat we received feedback in a beautiful designed online tool: TypeForm

Typeform awesome

Today I sent out a survey to get feedback for our event we hosted. We always used to do this with Google form. That is functional. Really functional. And really ugly. But it worked. Today it was a pleasure to work with TypeForm. Still in beta, so chances are something goes wrong. But it is easy in every way. And looks really good!

It takes you step by step through the proces and finally you end up with a survey that looks good. WIthout any line of code involved.

  • Building up your poll or form or survey or questionnaire is really easy. drag & drop. Design and layout can be easily configured.
  • Sending out your survey is easy
  • To answer your survey is lovely. Can all be done with your keyboard and on every device.
  • Beautiful analytics for conversion and time to fill in the questionnaire
  • Lovely dashboard and possibilities to work with your results and data.

If you want to do a quick survey online, forget Google Form, forget SurveyMonkey. Go with TypeForm. Surveys can be fun.

Eventbrite: The online admin tool for organizing your offline event

Organizing an event can be is a real hassle. Even with offline events online can be of great assistance. We used the tool Eventbrite, a booming startup, to handle all things digital for our event.

It is the place to;

* Lead your traffic to (or embed their code in your spot on the internet) with all essential information about your event.
* Arrange your payments (the take a fee offcourse, that’s their business model)
* Keep track of your conversion in every stage, from traffic on site, to ticket sold/registered to check-in and no shows.
* Communicate with your attendees via this platform.
* Check in all attendees at the event itself via their eventbrite entry app. Which you can have access to with multiple accounts to the same event.
* Extract (via excel, csv) all information via the forms into your CRM or database.

Makes life just a bit easier, organizing an event is still a hassle :-) 

Presentain: Interaction during your presentation (and after)

There is a new tool to make presentations more than just a story to doze off and looking at your smartphone. You are still looking at your smartphone but now it becomes part of the presentation. How cool is that!?

Today we had our social business event #change for our customers and partners. To change our way of presenting we used the tool Presentain. The product is still in beta but the guys behind this startup were really helpful. And had such a high standard of service. Damn! Responding times were very fast and flexible to help us out.

What is does? Is gives you the option to directly interact with the audience due to input that the audience can give via their smartphone or tablet.

1. So you can have a poll in which the results immediately shown on the big screen which even move with every extra vote is gets. This is perfect material to react upon during the presentations on how the audience thinks about certain topics.

2. It lets you interact with the host and so you can ask extra questions to the presentor.

3. The presentor uses the smartphone as a remote; which is something you have to get used to. But gives you also information about the current slide, the next slide and how long your presentation is already been running.

4. Afterwards the audience can leave their email addresses so you can do follow up (sales / marketing) activities.

5. You can choose to upload your presentation directly online including the audio (which has been recording via your smartphone).

This is still beta. Not everything is publicly available yet. It has some work arounds to get things working smoothly. But the reactions from the audience were very good!

I am very happy we took the chance and tried something new today. And with a lot more features coming up i guess this will get big. I hope this will change the way presentations will be held to have more interaction and feeling with the people you speak to. 

mail sent to: me

This week I will share some online tools I am using to ‘get around town’ in the online world. First off a tool that helps me to get e-mails on the time I want them to be in my inbox.

I have several online systems to get my brain free for the things it has to focus on. Although we all try to do many things at the same time. We are not able to. And so to be fully focused we have to get those things that are on your mind out of your system.

So we e-mail ourselves with the ideas and tasks. But one big problem  (there are many) with email is that you cannot easily give it a timestamp for when it has to arrive. Or at least you cannot control the sender in doing that.

I try to work towards inbox zero. Which doesn’t mean I don’t have any mails I still have to work on. But it does say I processed all my e-mails. And sometimes you want to remember a certain email in a week or even a year later. The online tool that works for me in those cases is boomerang for gmail.

It gives you the option to email yourself which will boomerang back into your inbox on the moment you want it to be there. And another great feature is the ‘waiting for’ alert. An alert can automatically be deactivated if someone responds to your email.

Only available if you are using gmail and are either using chrome or firefox. Haven’t used the mobile version yet because my current smartphone isn’t able to. I will work on that.

(Of cource for the iOS users of gmail is this perfect app: The one that used every bit of growth hacking you can imagine. More about that in another blogpost)


Using Google Analytics

I love the web and all of those free tools we get to make use of it. Somehow those companies make money by giving it away for free. Be aware of that. But as long it is marketing for their products to go pro instead of the data being sold;

“if you are not paying for it you’re not the customer but the product being sold”

Anyway. You are a product of Google. Almost all internet users are. Who isn’t using either Google Chrome or Google Android?

Still. I love using Analytics. In my work for Social Inc I get to see a lot of data from social media platforms. That are finally giving away the data of the back-end. I also connected the Google Analytics (and downloaded the app to monitor the highlights via the smartphone) that are available for free. Big issue this week by Google no longer providing the search keywords.

Still a really valueble asset to see where your traffic is coming from. What you still can see:

  • How long people stay on your website.
  • Where they come from. (visual location)
  • Where they come from. (internet domain)
  • What devices, browers they are using
  • and much more :P

All that data can be used to see what gets the best responds. And if you look to much to this data you end up like a lot of sites that are a variant of buzzfeed. No quality at all. But a lot of pictures of cats. So don’t get blind by only looking at the data.


Emaillist with Mailchimp

Good old e-mail, you know. This box on your computer that isn´t fluent. Where you have your own stack of all things to do together. That is also another great tool to grab the attention of your audience. It is in decline. But still going strong compared with other channels. I will tell you a lot about social in the coming weeks to explain more about actual click through and conversion.

If you compare the numbers. Email is still a really valueale asset. For marketeer to have an email adres is really valueable because you can be targetted and hunted in your own working space.

and yes Google dit a good job with Gmail to make the separate tabs for different kind of email. Giving you back much more control of your email. Too bad for the marketeers.

The best online tool to set up a mailinglist is Mailchimp.  Mailchimp is free, or at least if you don’t send more than 2000 mails per month. No hard lock in, you can download your data at any time. A really fun tool to work with. The monkey from mailchimp is talking to you. Gives you high fives. But more importantly; it is really easy to work with!

But to conclude; you can leave your email adres behind here. Thanks :)


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Making it easy for yourself to blog

Just do a shout out you do a 100 day blog challenge. I can assure you know. That helps. Some other tips I have for you to blog. Remove all barriers. Simple.
Most people have said sometimes during their life they want to write a book. And not much people actually do it. There are a lot of reasons for this. And I guess the same can be said about blogging. People want to express. Not all, i know. But all these platforms on internet have helped to democratize the web. We all can set up a twitter account in seconds. But 140 characters is easy. Or at least, it lowered the barrier a lot. (even much more for communications via the smartphone; Whatsapp delivers 31 billions messages a day!)
Back to blogging: why not? No time, too much hassle to set up a blog. Or no skills to write for online. What ever it may be. Do it. Try it.
Some tricks that work for me to keep writing:
  1. Say out loud you are blogging. fun to share and outside force that you don’t want to disappoint.
  2. Catch every idea. Put those ideas directly online that will also sync online. I use Evernote pro for that.
  3. Work on it device indepently: no matter if you are on your PC, tablet or smartphone. Make sure you have every app (no matter if you use Tumblr (by far the most easy one to upload) or WordPress.
  4. Work on it during every moment you have; the loo, a waiting line, a elevator. Instead of consuming content. Make content during those moments!
  5. Digg deep into one subject (it is more easy to name objects in your fridge containing milk than to name objects without the help of an ingrediënt. Weird, but true).
  6. Ask for feedback or drop a statement that could lead to a discussion. Which is great input for your next blogpost.

What works for you?

Claim and connect your online content with Google Authorship!

Blogging is one. Getting people to read is a second.

Google is allmighty for online marketing in trying to reach you audience. But from the communications corner an slightly growing competitor is getting stronger and stronger. Your own profile and connections you have built over time. Your friends on Facebook. Your business contacts on LinkedIn. Your whatever on Twitter. Each a separate target group. But all together you have your very first online audience. And the social media platforms want you to broadcast data over it.

Google is very well aware of this human behaviour. It does is A/B testing too :). It missed out the social platforms for long, failed a few times. But it has now the best information about each person on internet. Actual behaviour (instead of just the pretending to be human). Enter Google+. So important is to have your profile connected to your Google+ account. Here is mine.

Google also wants you to connect yourself to all you assets all over the internet. So it can benefit you and give you credit for it. Enter Google Authorship. You can see here the difference: My posting of yesterday

screenshot authorship

Yeah busted. I have +1’d my own posting. Compare that to this blogposting I have written before for MarketingsFacts;

Google Author

This gives two extra’s. One is a picture with a face. That is always a plus. Second is my network, or better, people that have my profile visible in their Google+ feed. For a bit of social proof. Enough about that a little later on this blog.

The steps you have to take to add Google authorship to your blog can be found here. It is easy. It is worth it!