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Mike Allton
Works at SiteSell
Attended The Ohio State University
Lives in St. Louis, MO
184,760 followers|17,674,407 views
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Education
  • The Ohio State University
    International Studies, 1992 - 1995
  • Bowling Green State University
    History and Computer Science, 1996 - 1999
  • Norwalk High School
    1988 - 1992
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Looking for
Networking
Birthday
May 13, 1974
Relationship
Married
Story
Tagline
Consultant, Author, Dad
Introduction

I love to teach others how to better leverage the internet and content to promote their business. Specifically, I provide articles and guidance on how to create blog and other content that helps increase website traffic, generate leads, and convert those leads into sales.

I maintain a blog and article archive at The Social Media Hat, but my primary focus is serving as the Chief Marketing Officer for SiteSell, where we help entrepreneurs and bloggers get their online businesses started.

Publications

Available Courses

Suggested Circles

  • Social Media News
  • Content Marketing Information
  • Blogging Tips
  • Technology Discussion

Suggested Articles

These are articles that I often recommend and reference:

Background

I'm originally from Ohio where I studied Computer Science and History at The Ohio State University and Bowling Green State University. I've had a long career in IT, including PC Repair, Server configuration, networking, sales, websites and more. But in 2012, I discovered a passion and talent for writing and teaching Content Marketing.

I now live in St. Louis with my wife and two adorable daughters, along with two Birman cats. I blog weekly, am working on a blogging course, and will have a new book on Content Marketing out later this year.

Hangouts and Interviews and Panel Discussions

I am available to participate in broadcast Hangouts and Interviews on a limited basis. If you would like to schedule an appearance, please contact me with your interview format and schedule.

Training and Consulting

While I am not currently accepting new clients, if you need help with something, please reach out. I may be able to provide the answer you need, direct you to the right resource, or refer you to one of my colleagues who can better assist you.

HootSuite Author & Solution Provider

With HootSuite, larger businesses, organizations and enterprises can set up social media dashboards used for not only promoting content, but also social listening, customer service, prospecting, and internal team communication. I am a Certified HootSuite Professional and written extensively to help businesses set up their HootSuite accounts and train staff on how to create a Social Media Command Center.

More casual and individual HootSuite users are encouraged to review my #HootSuiteSeries for HootSuite tips, guides and best practices.

Tags: #SocialMedia #Google+ #LinkedIn #Twitter #Facebook #HootSuite | #ContentMarketing #Blogging | #WebsiteDesign #WebDev #Drupal #CMS | #SEO #SEM 

Bragging rights
I sold swimming pools and hot tubs in 2006 and 2007, and became a top salesman within the entire organization within my first year.
Work
Occupation
Chief Marketing Officer
Skills
Blog Coaching, Social Media Strategy, Google+ Consulting, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Search Engine Optimization, Internet Marketing, Hootsuite
Employment
  • SiteSell
    Chief Marketing Officer, 2014 - present
    SiteSell works to help entrepreneurs and bloggers build their online business, and I lead the team that builds and fosters relationships with those people.
  • The Social Media Hat
    Social Media Manager, 2012 - present
    I work with business owners to first identify content marketing and social media opportunities to promote their business and engage clients, and then help them to implement strategies and techniques to achieve those goals. In other words, I can help get your blog started, figure out what you're going to write about and who would be interested, which social networks to post to and when, and how to use social media to entertain, educate and engage your potential customers.
  • Freelance
    Website Developer, 2007 - 2012
    Built hundreds of websites using the Drupal Content Management System platform, providing business owners with a dynamic website they are able to update and add to themselves.
  • Dana Corporation
    ERP Support Specialist and Team Leader, 1999 - 2001
  • Viking Technology
    Sales Manager and Web Designer, 2001 - 2005
  • Litehouse Pools & Spas
    Sales Associate, 2005 - 2006
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
St. Louis, MO
Previously
Chesterfield, MO - Norwalk, OH - Columbus, OH - Toledo, OH - Bowling Green, OH - Lake Saint Louis, MO
Contact Information
Work
Email

Stream

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Take your Blogging to the Next Level
UPDATED

Many individuals and businesses aspire to become better bloggers. Perhaps you’re looking to add an additional revenue stream, or perhaps you’re hoping to use your blog to establish your expertise and authority in your field. Whatever the reason, you’re on the right track! Your blog can do all those things and more for you, but it will take time and hard work.

That’s where I can help.

Here are a number of articles I’ve published which you can spend some time reviewing and learn several key techniques and aspects of blogging that will help you.


WHEN & HOW TO WRITE BLOGS

101 Blogging Tips for Successful Business Blogs - http://owl.li/stoyC

How Often Should You Blog: The Ultimate Answer - http://owl.li/stnRH

What Does It Take to Blog 3 - 5 Times a Week? - http://owl.li/stnYD

The Importance of Ignoring Your Blogging Schedule - http://owl.li/stm8j

Cut Your Blog Writing Time by 50% with a Blog Template - http://owl.li/stnvP

WARNING: This Will Improve Your Blog Traffic by 25% - http://owl.li/stnL3

They’re Just Words. Edit Your Blog Posts Ruthlessly. - http://owl.li/stmc2

How to Blog Like Mike - http://owl.li/tetfI


WHAT TO BLOG ABOUT

Generating Blog Ideas - http://owl.li/stoa2 

Tell Your Business Story, One Blog at a Time - http://owl.li/stm2c

Vary Your Blog Posts With These Three Styles - http://owl.li/stnmj 

How to Orchestrate Themes Into Your Content Marketing - http://owl.li/stmlk

Are Your Blog Posts Riding Coattails? - http://owl.li/stlLD

How to Create Brand Interest and Value with Newsjacking - http://owl.li/stnqL

The Epic Post on Epic Posts: The Ultimate Guide to Writing Epic Content - http://owl.li/AiEZJ


PROMOTING BLOG POSTS

How I Promote My Blog Posts - http://owl.li/stlXm

5 Ways to Make Your Blog Posts More Shareable - http://owl.li/stnBR

Super Charge Your Blog Reach as a Triberr Power User - http://owl.li/stlSc 

How Many Titles does your Blog Post Need? - http://owl.li/stlGm

Should Bloggers and Businesses Share Old Content? - http://owl.li/stlzb

How to Revive Old Blog Content - http://owl.li/unqbL 

5 Reasons Canva Will Rock Your Blog - http://owl.li/yPHRk 

How to Leverage the Power of Hootsuite for Social Media Success - http://owl.li/yPI2B 


Finally, be sure to view the recordings from The Second Annual Virtual Bloggers Conference (http://owl.li/yPHNC) where you’ll find 11 sessions with top experts talking about HOAs, Google+, Instagram, Hootsuite, Evernote, Branding, Podcasts and more.

If you haven’t already, I would recommend subscribing to my Blog Notification Circle. If you’re interested in getting a notification each time I share a new article on social media, blogging and marketing, just let me know. New posts come out no more than once or twice a day. (For more information on how you can use this technique yourself, click here: http://owl.li/stpug)

Best of luck with your blog! 

#Blogging #ContentMarketing #BloggingTips 
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This is awesome, really excellent, Thank you , +Mike Alton ,for this portal, extremely strong, which emphasizes sharing and ways of successes, in our world of technology and our Internet world, great, Big Thank You.
Add a comment...
 
What Do You Want To Know About Blogging?

+Jeff Sieh and I need your help. We're building a complete online course to help bloggers become better bloggers, but at 39 modules and counting, we may be covering topics that aren't of interest. Or we may need to spend more time and energy working to help you with other topics.

Please take a moment to review our proposed curriculum and give us some feedback. You can vote up or down the modules that interest you, and recommend others.

Thanks for your time!

#Blogging   #BloggingCourse   #BloggingTraining  

P.S. Please share this with anyone else that you know who is or would like to be a blogger, as we'd like to get input from as many bloggers as possible.
Mike Allton and Jeff Sieh are creating an online course designed to help bloggers become better bloggers, but they want to hear from you. What do you want to know?
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+Mike Allton Not sure what you have so far. I think a realistic estimate of how long it will take to build an audience would be very helpful.
Add a comment...
 
Find out what you've missed, and what you have to look forward to in the +Plus Your Business! community!
 
‘Plus Your Business’ Community - (NEW) Weekly Roundup!
Check out the current happenings in the PYB Community. Read more…

Message from Martin: 
Next week we are going to really get things moving, so if you want to get more involved with the Academy
Opt in here: https://plus.google.com/+MartinShervington/posts/5ts2kDex4JP

And there is still time to learn about local for your business; or how to get your local community on the map, as a consultant...

Week 2 starts tomorrow, but it will be easy to catch up and join the PYB Local movement here:
http://www.plusyourbusiness.com/certified-pyb-local-consultant/
(100 people already involved!)

“The PYB Show”! 30 minute Format…. with Special Guest +Anna Bennett
 http://plusyourbiz.com/sp
hosted by +martin shervington and PYB Videographer +Travis Taylor

FEATURED STORIES From PYB Academy Members 
Posts you may have missed from the PYB Crew

1. The Apple Guy ... by +Michel Reibel http://plusyourbiz.com/ss

2. 12 No Nonsense Tips To A Successful Social Media...by +Carrie-Anne Foster   http://plusyourbiz.com/sr

3. How Not To Use Google+  +Mike Allton   http://plusyourbiz.com/st

That’s our week in review! Great to see you all this week and can’t wait to see what the next 7 has in store. Cheers!

#plusyourbusiness
#plusyourbusinessroundup 
#plusyourbusinessnewsletter
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Mike Allton

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Scheduling Google+ Posts

On Google+, it’s easy for everyone. You simply log into your Google+ account, begin crafting your Google+ post like you normally would, and then click on the little scheduler icon to… Wait, huh? Oh, crap.

That’s right! There is no built in scheduler for Google+! </facepalm> Now what do we do?
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I'll have you covered +Carey Green. ;)
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Mike Allton

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In case you missed some of the activity this week around the Plus... +Mick Sharpe has you covered.
 
Here be Dragons

Almost a third of the way through the year and time for more Google+ is dead articles from all quarters. Fortunately there are many Saint Georges here on the Plus to set the record straight when the journalism strays way too far from the reality. I happen to agree with +Mark Traphagen’s stance that it is normally not worth wasting any time on these articles but applaud his rebuttal to the recent Forbes post A Truly Awful Google+ Hatchet Job on Forbes Exposed (http://goo.gl/TOVF8p) As usual Mark is very thorough and tenacious in his search for the facts behind the article and presents the full picture of the research on which the article was based. The post has also been updated to include +David Amerland’s comments from the original article which can almost be applied to every Google+ is dead post that has ever been written (or will be written).  Well worth referring to if in conversation on the topic elsewhere. Do go through the comments if you have time, some interesting points raised and the possibility of a follow up from the author.

And finally some things are changing in mobile search as Google’s mobile-friendly factor kicks in. +Glenn Gabe has been diligently monitoring results and reports the first changes in Now We Have Liftoff: The First Examples of Google’s Mobile Friendly Algorithm In Action (http://goo.gl/B8PuoT). While many might bemoan the drop of a few places I look at this from the searchers point of view and what a real boon it is for them to have unsuitable sites demoted in the results. Also a blessing for those without a mobile-friendly site as any mobile visitors you did have probably left with an unsavoury taste in their mouths. No doubt much more will emerge over the coming weeks.

Hey, they made this for me!

If you think you need more from your website then this could be the video of the week for you. The +ReachConnectUpliftWomen show Buyer Persona: Who are you targeting on your website in 15 minutes (http://goo.gl/HgtoFr) with +Lany Sullivan featured +Randy Milanovic talking about the importance of understanding your website visitors. I can’t emphasise this enough - unless you know who you’re serving your content creation may be far less effective than it could be. Fifteen minutes of common sense (that very rare thing these days) Watch this if nothing else this week.

Another example of Randy’s insight and helpfulness can be found in Can Social Be Seasonal? (http://goo.gl/yuycSK). Again this speaks to understanding your customers/audience and adapting your own timetable to suit. Yes there is a reason why Friday Favourites is a Friday post (and it’s not just the alliterative title!). I’m sure you’ve already circled Randy but if not, what are you waiting for?

Meet the +EagleCO Vail2015 team face to face  in Local Businesses on Google Maps - A Case Study (http://goo.gl/Wnp0eM). You’ve read the posts and this is the chance to get to know the team a little better. The host with most +Mia Voss directs proceedings as +Debi Davis, +Nina Trankova, +Peter Lunn, +Rey Ley, +Cherie Manifest, +Sanjiv Manifest, +Tim Sweeney and +Vin Brown talk about their experiences with the campaign. Excellent review of the challenges, business inertia and opportunities revealed as the project progressed. I believe it’s the real projects such as this that are the best response to the typical Google+ is dead brigade. It shows real value for the common business owner. Go on, Google yourself now! Thanks for the shout out, only too happy to have helped a little.

It would be remiss of me not to mention the pivotal role that +Plus Your Business! played in the #EagleCO project. I know the team members have gained much from the PYB Community and Academy, as have I. Well worth checking out if you’re looking to improve your business on Google+.

Had to dig around a little for this week’s The Mid Week Marketing Mix (http://goo.gl/Q9aeyq) as a little glitch removed the original event from my events list. +James Dearsley kicks off the show introducing +Kimberly Reynolds talking about the Social Media Marketing World event. Content overload and the continuing upsurge in video filling much of this segment. +Eric Enge talks about the upcoming third edition of his book The Art of SEO with some major changes reflecting the continual evolution of search. One for the birthday / Christmas list. +Vincenzo Landino wraps up the social news with a  look at LinkedIn Elevate, bot accounts and the efforts to remove them and Google custom audiences. Dip into the bits of interest from +The Digital Marketing Bureau #timestamp post (http://goo.gl/Krc2a6)

On taking your time

Beer and sage wisdom - what’s not to like? +David Kutcher’s Social Media Strategy and Hops (http://goo.gl/bQgxwh) brings together two of my favourite pastimes, beer and growing plants. If you’ve ever taken the time to nurture something from seed then you’ll immediately get David’s point - social media and building relationships is a long haul activity if the result is to be worthwhile. Actually this applies to much more than a Social Media Strategy. Way too often we expect everything to happen instantly and yet there is often much more reward for being patient.

Another lively #RayLunchBunch discussion Are You Building a Community or a Tribe? (http://goo.gl/P5KzKu) +Ray Hiltz, +B.L. Ochman, +Jessica Dewell and +Scott Scowcroft are joined by +Mark Timberlake. There may be some variance in our understanding of the word tribe but there’s little disagreement on the value of co-learning and collaboration that can be found in the really strong communities. Always an easy choice for me in these time-constrained days, 35 minutes of intelligent, thoughtful discussion.

Thinkers corner

A timely reminder from +Mike Allton in WARNING: Bloggers Beware - Image Licenses May Not Cover Social Media (http://goo.gl/SJFbov). Check your image licence coverage if you’re sharing your articles to social media. Always better to err on the side of caution, the last thing you need is a bill for an enhanced licence for any shared images. It does happen, even to you, so do check your bought in images. Some sensible thoughts in the comments too so do take the time to read.

And finally…

I’ll disagree with +Thomas E. Hanna | BlogPhoto.tv’s condemnation of the humble caterpillar but there’s no denying the value of his post How To Transform A Blog Post In 5 Easy Steps (http://goo.gl/s4zlwY). Whether you’re a seasoned writer or just starting out you would do well to take a look at this. My additional tip for Step 1 is beer (twice in the same post has to be a record!). The was rule is particularly valuable in turning your writing into something much more readable. Great stuff Thomas.


Have a great weekend wherever you are

#WeeklyRoundUp  #WeekInReview  #Google+

#BitingedgeFridayFavourites  #MicksPicks

Created by +Mick Sharpe of +Bitingedge
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You're quick +Mike Allton, real quick ;-)

Many thanks for sharing and have a great weekend.
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Mike Allton

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Here's your weekend reading!
 
On Sale This Week: All 4 Google+ Pro Tips ebooks!
Figured it was timely to help newcomer businesses, consultants, and solopreneurs on Google+ learn techniques ranging from simple to advanced on circle management, posting and sharing, and gaining exposure on this great platform.

The link below takes you to a list of all my published books and guides, but click through on any of the G+ Pro Tips books and you'll be taken to Amazon where they're listed for $0.99 each through April 29.

(Again, US store only. You don't need a Kindle to read Kindle books, Amazon has a free Kindle Reader apps for PC, Mac, iOS, and Android).

I'd love a review on Amazon if you've read any or all of them, too!

#googleplus   #googleplustips   #googleplusbusiness  
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Thanks Mike!
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How To Transform A Blog Post In 5 Easy Steps
Blog posts are like butterflies.

Butterflies are not very pretty when they start off. They don’t travel well. They’re not even beneficial.

As any gardener will tell you, a flowerbed filled with caterpillars is a dead flowerbed.

A blog is no different.

The rough draft of an article is rarely pretty. It doesn’t travel well. It’s not particularly beneficial to you or to your readers.

As any successful blogger will tell you, a blog filled with unrevised content is a dead blog.

So how can you take your new creation and give it wings?

Here are five simple steps to transform your rough draft into something incredible.

Read It Here: https://blogphoto.tv/blog/how-to-edit-a-blog-post/

#writingtips   #contentcreation   #contentmarketing  

Shoutout to those linked to in the article:
+Sue Anne Dunlevie 
+Mike Allton 
+Jon Morrow 
+Demian Farnworth 
Writing may birth new life, but it is editing that gives that life beauty and strength.
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Mike Allton

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+Mike Elgan shares his thoughts on YAGPID article (Yet Another Google Plus Is Dead).
 
Why 's +Lisa Eadicicco's column on Google+ failed.

The latest "Google+ is dead" article comes from an acquaintance of mine named +Lisa Eadicicco (she's been on my show a few times, and also on +TWiT): 

http://www.businessinsider.com.au/what-happened-to-google-plus-2015-4

The piece exists to explain why Google+ failed. In the article, Lisa makes 3 errors fatal to her argument, which add up to a grossly misleading article. 

Here are those errors: 

1. Lisa accepts without question the false idea that spinning photos out of Google+ means Google+ is failing. 

When Google properties like Google Play and YouTube were integrated into Google+, the tech press didn't give those events as evidence that Google+ was winning. 

Spinning out photos is a good thing, and doesn't affect Google+ at all. 

2. Lisa says something that's untrue: "Google+ never really caught on the same way social networks like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn did."

In fact, Google+ is far bigger and has far more engagement than Twitter or Linkedin. 

The reason everyone believes the opposite is because of the sheer number of articles like this one -- regurgitating and repeating falsehoods without questioning the obvious flaws in reasoning that anyone can see. 

Let's talk about the Twitter comparison. 

Google+ engagement looks at one minor number: public posts. Private posts (the default mode) are NOT counted. Comments, which are replies, are NOT counted. 

Twitter engagement numbers count public posts, too (unlike on G+, the vast majority of Twitter posts are public). And replies to tweets -- the equivalent of a comment on Google+ -- are counted, too. 

A post with 20 replies on Google+ is counted as one post. 

A post with 20 replies on Twitter is counted as 21 posts. 

Twitter gets more than 20 times more "credit" in this example for engagement than Google+ does for the EXACT same conversation. 

That's why Twitter numbers are similar to Google+ numbers when in Face Google+ engagement is probably many times higher than Twitter. 


3. She equates employee grumbling with admission of failure.

Yes, I believe Google+ failed in the sense that it didn't make a dent in Facebook, which has got to have been a major goal. But Google+ did succeed in becoming the number-two social network in history in terms of engagement -- far more successful than the media's darling, Twitter. 


It's great that Lisa got sources on record giving us a tiny peek at what people might be saying inside Google. But the column goes off the rails by failing to question obviously false information that form the foundation of the article. 

(Pic props: http://www.thesocialmediahat.com/active-users )
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There's life in the old dog yet. 
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Mike Allton

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Get ready to explore another deep read from +David Amerland:
David Amerland originally shared:
 
Strangers…

We usually think of ourselves as highly intelligent, complex, motivated, biomachines that have free will and represent the apex of an age-long evolutionary process. Yet in reality, instead of a purpose-built, no-expense-spared project we are the biological equivalent of a tendering process that favours the lowest bidder who’s fit-for-purpose. (not unlike in fact the way NASA builds rockets: http://goo.gl/xSvAI9 except we can’t re-tender if a disastrous compromise has been made somewhere). 

So, we end up becoming discrete bio-units, each locked up inside a body that contains a brain. Our behaviour guided by mental modelling that requires the creation of ‘bubbles’ or safe zones which would allow us the breathing space required to function properly. We form tight communities guided by creed, ideology, language or ethnicity (or a combination of all these). We labour under the illusion that we are independent, self-sufficient yet, in our every step, from birth to death, we rely on others for our most basic needs.

Even within highly stylized constructs, like airports, where the transitional nature of the situation frequently justifies our complete withdrawal into ourselves, we create a complex, hierarchical, highly visible, social construct (the airport and the society that makes it possible) that is designed to not only get complete strangers travelling across the globe, to their destination, safely, but also reassure them that things work, that the system is functioning and that people are doing what they are supposed to even if there is no personal connection between them and us.

The question why we form communities has many answers (http://goo.gl/tC5fpN) and they all make sense in terms of survival. What is less readily available to understand is why do we then also make connections so easily with total strangers with whom we have little in common except perhaps an interest in something? 

The answer there lies both in instincts (of which we have quite a few, albeit well-hidden ones): http://goo.gl/HkJvTl and design. We form communities (even ones that are framed by very narrow boundaries) driven by four fundamental psychological needs: http://goo.gl/LljW4r and then, perversely, and mostly subconsciously, we mirror the fact that our existence is the result of a whole lot of ‘random processes’ and events working together, and we run our complex, energy-intensive, societal constructs on trust: http://goo.gl/BJ7l98

We require trust to actually make anything work in a communal sense: http://goo.gl/cPTnNX. When trust is so key to our survival it is unlikely that we do not already have developed highly complex cognitive schemas for actually dealing with it. It is only now that we begin to realise the processes that constantly go on behind our eyes which allow us to determine whether we are ‘OK’ with something or not: http://goo.gl/JRT0r8

There is a paradox at work here that needs to be unpacked a little further. While we have truly complex, cognitive processes that allow us to calculate trust these are little more than a cognitive framework within which we process experiences which then allow us to formulate mental constructs. Put more simply, there is inherent programming in us, but it will be shaped by our experiences which will then guide our expectations. Both the latter and the former will be determined by our behaviour. It is this latter path that allows the manifestation of ‘free will’ and determination, hope, vision and planning to manifest themselves. 

While we all carry more or less the same cognitive schemas inside our brains the output of their processes  are determined by our willingness to take chances, experience other cultures and people, be ‘brave’ and talk to ‘strangers’, be willing to be vulnerable, to enter situations where the outcome is uncertain in the hope that they will prove beneficial. 

In earlier ages, this led to continents being discovered, countries being opened up, passages across the world being found. It’s a drive that has not disappeared even though much of the world has been mapped: http://goo.gl/DY5B30. The cost of doing it offline has always been high, both in terms of personal and communal stakes. The cost of doing it online is, as expected, significantly lower but nevertheless fraught with the same complex issues of risk, reward and achievement. 

We join communities. Start conversations, take part in threads, ‘meet up’ with people in video calls, HOAs (in G+) and with people we met online in the real world and none of it is ‘easy’: http://goo.gl/CtH5z5. Yet the focus on negative outcomes is a symptom of neuroticism: http://goo.gl/A3CWRF. The inability to get past the negative (which we frequently, and inevitably, we also encounter online under the label of ‘healthy’ scepticism) is evidence of cognitive schemas on overdrive, and cognitive processes coming unbalanced. 

Whether we like it or not. Whether we realise it or not. The world is changing. From global games like Ingress (http://goo.gl/FCQra6) which Google’s Niantic Labs initiated as an experiment, to more catalytic events like conferences that allow people from very different backgrounds, nationalities and levels of experience to congregate and meet (http://goo.gl/4jZpnB and http://goo.gl/ZI19ok) the boundaries are shifting, the mapping continues, the age of Exploration: http://goo.gl/kmckO (itself driven by commercial intent as trade routes were being sought), is still on. 

We are not real strangers, it would appear, just friends that have yet to meet, to paraphrase a quote attributed to W. B. Yeats: http://goo.gl/hNriI1. I am not sure quite how accurate the attribution is as I could find no huge corroborating evidence but my looking did lead me to Edgar Guest: http://goo.gl/nh8DrC whose 1919 poem The Unknown Friends from his collection The Path to Home (http://goo.gl/ygEDCA) really ought to be our anthem: 

We cannot count our friends, nor say
How many praise us day by day.
Each one of us has friends that he
Has yet to meet and really know,
Who guard him, wheresoe'er they be,
From harm and slander's cruel blow.
They help to light our path with cheer,
Although they pass as strangers here.

These friends, unseen, unheard, unknown,
Our lasting gratitude should own.
They serve us in a thousand ways
Where we perhaps should friendless be;
They tell our worth and speak our praise
And for their service ask no fee;
They choose to be our friends, although
We have not learned to call them so.

We cannot guess how large the debt
We owe to friends we have not met.
We only know, from day to day,
That we discover here and there
How one has tried to smooth our way,
And ease our heavy load of care,
Then passed along and left behind
His friendly gift for us to find.

And that’s the perfect note to end this week’s Sunday Read on. I hope you have the coffee brewing and the donuts, croissants, cookies and chocolate cake coming. We will all need sugar and coffee to help us with our explorations today. Have a great Sunday wherever you are. 
 
#davidamerlandsundayread  
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This post is fast becoming one of the things I look forward to reading every Sunday morning...
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Mike Allton

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And here's what you have to look forward to today, compliments of the unstoppable +Mia Voss!
 
It's #MustSeeHOAFriday ! Here's what you should be doing today:

10am MT:  I'll have to catch this on replay but +Phil Bowyer is going to serve up some serious #GetYourLearnOn  with this topic:  What The New Era of YouTube Means For Your Business - Rule Breaking Ideas
http://goo.gl/JdOU5E

10am MT:  +The Mia Connect Power Chat - Today's theme is Animal Happy Hour and the guest lineup is amazing - +Yvonne DiVita of +BlogPaws +Denise Wakeman +PetWorldInsider +Cameron Young and +Hills of Africa http://goo.gl/2WRSuy

11am MT: Good Day Google Plus hosted by my brotha +Chef Dennis Littley - I'm excited to join in along with +Yifat Cohen +Esther Grondahl and +Patty Burgess Brecht of #TheDeathChicks  
http://goo.gl/VopwGD

11:30am MT: Practice your Italian with this one! +MOOZ is hosting a live stream event featureing Italian photographer Gianni Berengo Gardin presenting "Il Lavoro dell'Uomo" - great job on putting this together, +Nazim Beltran !  http://goo.gl/NUwyyR

12pm MT:  #CMGRHangout  presents: Creating Culture in Communities with +Jonathan Brewer +Dom Garrett +Sherrie Rohde and panelists +Jessica Malnik & Scott Moore
http://goo.gl/eUVNEL

5pm MT - +Arizona Lowe & +Katrina Pfannkuch host Thinking Out Loud | Finding Your Elemental Self with +Nicole Levac !
http://goo.gl/tSqy1P

8pm MT: It's back!!!  My little brotha +Michael Daniels is hosting the Plusword Episode #38 Hangout 4/23/2015 with guests +Lany Sullivan & +Terry Leigh Britton vs. +Andrew Hatchett & +Rhonda Wall http://goo.gl/gpqPDp

And don't forget the #FridayFavourite  Roundup from +Mick Sharpe - this is the "What You Missed" list that you need to read! 
http://goo.gl/lt1pfc
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Mia Voss's profile photo
 
I love that title, +Mike Allton - thanks brotha!
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Mike Allton

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Do you use the Buffer browser extension? Please jump into this poll from +Dustin W. Stout.

And if you don't know what Buffer is, you're missing out! Here's a primer for you:

- http://www.thesocialmediahat.com/article/use-killer-app-social-media-management

And because this gets asked all the time, here's the answer to Hootsuite vs. Buffer:

- http://www.thesocialmediahat.com/article/hootsuite-versus-buffer-heavyweight-championship
 
ATTN Buffer Users:
Do you use the Buffer browser extension?

If you are a +Buffer user, I'd love to have you answer this simple question for me so that I can gather some insight. I would also greatly appreciate it if you share this poll so that I might capture more answers. 

Thank you so much! #yourock  
381 votes  -  votes visible to Public
YES, I use the Buffer browser extension
28%
NO, I don't use the browser extension.
20%
What is Buffer?
51%
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Mike Allton's profile photoravinderr choudhary's profile photoGerry Grant's profile photoJeff smith's profile photo
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its awesome
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WARNING: Bloggers Beware - Image Licenses May Not Cover Social Media

When creating images for your blog posts, you're going to have to be even more careful about which images you choose to use. Even if you pay for an image to use within a blog post graphic, that image may not be licensed for use on social media - and of course we all want our blog posts to be shared to social!

I am specifically referring to fotolia.com, which has a subset of images that are specifically marked as acceptable for social media usage. You can purchase and incorporate those images into a blog post and then it's OK when you and others share that post, and image, so social. But none of the other images that you legally purchased can be used in that way, according to Fotolia's terms of use.

Upon further research, I also noted that if Fotolia terminates their agreement with you, according to the terms of use, you are obligated to destroy all of your purchased images.

I don't want to turn this into a commercial for +Canva, but at least there it's clear that you can take the graphic that you create, and any licensed and purchased images within that graphic, and use it wherever the heck you want.

"Once you’ve published your design, you are free to use that design multiple ways. When you purchase a One Time Use License for the images in your design, the license covers the use of the images in that design and restricts the number of designs the image may be used in, but not the number of ways the design may be used."

I also reviewed the terms of use for istockphoto.com and there's no such stipulation there, but I know there are many other services from which you can purchase images, and I'm sure, like me, many of you assumed that if you paid for an image, you can use it for blog posts that are shared to social.

So be careful out there!

#Blogging   #SocialMedia #SocialMediaTips  
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Jane Mills's profile photoEd Vayn's profile photoSocial Media AOK's profile photoRichard Hussey's profile photo
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+Vickie Maris you're welcome! That's definitely another use case in which you have to read the terms carefully. 
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