It used to be the ol’ sandwich board and big sign outside your business that brought traffic and new customers to your business. Which is great if you are in the middle of a busy street, but what if you’re a great cafe tucked away somewhere nice?
The era of social media and geo tagging is bringing a plethora of new software programs that run on smartphones like Apple’s iPhone. Your iphone is now your street directory and with geo-tagging, tagging a specific location with exact co-ordinates so that your smartphone can display it on a map, your iphone can not only show you where you need to go but reveal all the other possible locations around you. Applications like AroundMe (http://bit.ly/dzpN28) allow you to find exactly what you are looking for while showing you how far away they are from you and if you want to get really advanced you could consider Augmented Reality (AR) that shows you on your video screen where cafe’s are as if they are an enemy aircraft.
What does this mean for small business? Well, I’m a little more tech-friendly than many people but I am now taking photos of food and restaurants and becoming a critic, writing comments about their venue, quality of food and service and I’m starting to see many more people “checking in” with these programs. My favourite application so far has to be Gowalla (http://bit.ly/cIAN2o). It’s simple (made in Texas) and allows you to do all the things you would want to do to tell friends and family about a place you like or dislike.
At this point, it is important for small businesses to be aware of these applications because whether they like to keep up with technology or not, younger people will use these applications to explore the area they have just moved into and there’ll be an opportunity to build a cult following with your customers and advocates.Read More
A blog is an interesting concept. It is used to share opinions, provide advice and bring traffic to your website. It’s like have a space to write articles in a major newspaper publication that everyone looks forward to reading. You can get paid for it or use it to bring traffic to your website.
There are a wide variety of blogging tools out there. You could go to a blogging site like blogger.com and create one quickly, then start typing. You could go directly to WordPress and create one to start adding your ideas and thoughts. If you are going to build a serious blog though, and make the committment to keep adding to it on a regular basis, then you really want to have it at your own domain (like slisar.com.au).
I simply logged into the cPanel (administration section of my website hosting account, provided by 123ezy), then clicked on the Fantastico icon to look at all the scripts I could install quite easily. By the way, the modern term for a program is “script”. I then clicked WordPress and installed it in a matter of minutes.
Finally, one of the best parts of WordPress is that because it is used so widely there are many people who create templates (or themes) to use with your WordPress script. You still create new blog posts and maintain your WordPress blog as you normally would, but it looks completely different to the public. Now, that is technology at work for you. If you don’t like the themes out there that you can buy for about US$75 (check out www.press75.com), then you can purchase and download a program that allows you to create your own templates (themes). If you get really good at it, you can start selling your own WordPress themes. Check out www.artisteer.com.
There we have it. Creating a blog is better at your own domain and WordPress is such a versatile script (and free) that I wouldn’t look anywhere else. Enjoy your blogging.Read More