Started a new job this week where my biggest challenge is trying to consolidate and simplify a lot of messages. Taken individually, the messages are great but they need a narrative to tie them all together. That’s what I’m trying to do with this weekly roundup of posts — help you figure out how to remove some of the complexity from your lives. There’s some great stuff this week and I hope you’ll take a few minutes to find something that helps you.
The Reason Why Your Personal Brand Sucks. A lot of what I do is help people figure out what makes them remarkable and then communicate it in a simple way. That’s one of the goals of this blog — to help you do the same. Boy oh boy, does Chris Penn get it. Want to start thinking about your personal brand in a different way? Read and print out this post…and hang it up somewhere really visible.
Google Alerts for Beginners. The second of a two-part post (with perhaps more to come) by Dawn Westerberg explaining how to maximize the free Google Alerts service, which directs news articles, website mentions, and Twitters in your mailbox. Part 2 focuses on your verticle/niche markets and keywords; the first (which you can find from a link at the bottom of the post) is on Google Alerts for customers. Make sure you also set one up for yourself and your business!
Great Leaders Don’t Multi-Task. Jennifer V. Miller makes the case — with some terrific additional links to interesting research — that we’re not as good as we think we are at multi-tasking and offers great advice for determining if something is worth focusing on.
Are You Easy? A Lesson in Packaging. Mike Cassidy didn’t buy something the other day because of the packaging. Are your sales lower than they should be for the same reason?
42 Bing Search Engine Hacks. Is it just me or do we all talk way too much about Google? Ivan Walsh offers some suggestions on improving your search results on Google — but you already knew that from the title, right? And if you’re looking for some great photos to use in PowerPoint presentations, you could do a whole lot worse than the daily site backgrounds (cataloged here).
The Best Piece of Management Advice I Ever Received. When you’ve built a strong, active community or tribe, sometimes one of your most interesting posts is the one where all you do is queue up your readers. That’s what happened here when Mitch Joel started a contest where the prizes were tickets to some upcoming events.
The Simple Way To Get Everything You Want From Online Marketing. Do you have a great product or service? Are you still falling short each month when it comes to selling? Have you spent a lot of time designing your website or trying to let people know what you do or offer? Sonia Simone’s post on Copyblogger addresses the challenges of simply asking for the sale.
Does Your Content Hit the Mark? Joe Pulizzi’s blog post discusses the importance of understanding your goals behind creating content — however you define that word — and discusses one research study that tried to come up with a way to address the problem of “spillage” in a men’s bathroom. You’ve got to have a call to action in all your content — a target, if you will — and Joe’s post does a nice job of getting you to think about this in a different way.
Mobile Compact Office: A Tim Vinik design (which probably means as much to you as it did to me, nevertheless…) that is very cool. Interestingly, though I clicked three times and still am not sure exactly what it costs, which may irritate you if you decide you want one.
What Is Success? Thanks to Kneale Mann, who was the first to point me toward this great 2-minute video clip of actor Kevin Spacey offering his view of success to a group of acting students. I’m using a direct link to this clip, but Kneale argues in his post that “you could spend the rest of your life reading about the secrets of success and Academy Award winning actor Kevin Spacey sums it up in a minute and 52 seconds.” Here’s a link to Kneale’s blog; it’s always worth a read.