Episode 115: What's New With Suz? Her New Publishing Biz and Your Next New Web Aps
Susan Bratton does a solo breakout performance on DishyMix this episode. Hear what she's been hatching since the new year. Find out about her blogger junket to the UK called The Traveling Geeks. Learn about her "Social Media Super Powers." Get hooked on her favorite new web aps from the best of Europe.
Susan Bratton: Welcome to Dishy Mix. I’m your host Susan Bratton, and on today’s show I’m going to do a little format change. Usually it’s the guest/host interview style that I love to do, and I’ve gotten a lot of listener email recently saying, “Hey, what are you up to these days. Do another Susan Bratton show.” I did one about six months ago, and I got more feedback on that than any show I’d ever done. So I thought, because I’m up to some new things, that you might like to know what’s happening. It’s also a nice summer break. And I’m going to share my latest creations and some of my favorite new web apps with you and tell you some things that are happening and are upcoming. So I can’t wait to tell you about my latest creations.
Susan Bratton: You know, at Personal Life Media, Tim and I started the company nearly three years ago. We have a podcast network of over 40 show with anywhere from three quarters of a million to a million downloads a month across our network. And thanks to you Dishy Mix listeners for letting people know about my show. It continues to grow, which I love. So we have the podcast network, and we’re really good at creating downloadable content, and we are now working both with our podcast experts, our hosts and with many new people and we have launched an information product publishing division. We’re creating direct to consumer, direct to customer downloadable books. I like to call them e-books with benefits, because these books are both PDF’s that you get immediate instant gratification from on the web, but they come with audio, video, all kinds of multi moto learning. I like to think about them as being like workshops in a box or systems, training systems, that you can learn and use. Some of the products that we’ve shipped include, of course, my new e-book called Talk Show Tips: 72 Secret Master Host Techniques, and if you do interviews at all for you own show, for you blogs, for anything that you’re doing, you can get my free mini course, it’s called The Easy Question Generator Mini Course. You can download that for free, and I teach you ten different ways to come up with really killer questions to ask in your next interview that no one probably has ever thought of. All kinds of nice cheat code kinds of ways to come up with some great questions.
Susan Bratton: We also launched a product called Speak Up With Power and Influence. It’s a system by John James Santangelo, he’s the host of our podcast called Sales Magic where he does the guided meditations and visualizations for people in sales who kind of, we psyche ourselves out and we need to get pumped up. You might enjoy that too. And Speak Up With Power and Influence is about how you can be more confident, not just in public speaking, but, you know, in speaking up to authority, your boss, your pastor, speaking up in meetings, wherever you might feel marginalized or shy and you want to feel more confident, use powerful vocabulary, use powerful language and sentence structure and, you know, get more control over what’s happening so that you get the things you want in life. It’s a terrific system. We’re also just launching something called Masterful Techniques: Overcome Fear and Anxiety. That’s with Alissa Kriteman, and she is our host of a show called Just For Women. And Alissa has done an amazing job of putting five different ways that if you have nagging fear, feeling anxious about things, how to get that under control without having to take Prozac or go to a psychologist. Some really great meditation, guided visualization, some breathing practices, something called the Emotional Freedom Technique; things that you can learn on your own that she teaches you how to do that can lower your stress threshold. We’re also launching something really fun called Intimate Party Ideas. You know how you have a dinner party and it’s maybe, you know, a half dozen people and you sit around and when everyone leaves and goes home you say to your partner, “Oh, that was so much fun. Why don’t we do that more often?” Well intimate party ideas, which is with Ms. Jamie Love from San Francisco, she is teaching you some party games that are essentially really fun things that you can do with close friends or friends that you want to get more intimate with and have deeper connections and conversation, including things like eye gazing, a game called Quality Questions. It’s like a party in a kit that teaches you not only games you can play to have a lot of fun and conversation, but also how to plan that party and reduce the stress from it.
Susan Bratton: We have a product coming out called The Meaning Solution: Create Purpose, Power and Passion, for those of you who want to coach yourself through getting your life purpose down and understanding what it is you’re alive for and how you contribute to the universe. This is a fantastic product from Dr. Eric Maisel. He does two shows on our network: Joy of Living Creatively and Your Life Purpose. We also have Getting Real Confidence: 21 Days to Lasting Self Esteem with Dr. Susan Campbell. We have Learning Wedding Photography, the digital camera course from Kerry Garrison. We have got over 18 different e-books with benefits in production. And essentially what Tim and I have put together is an entire infrastructure, a technology infrastructure, to create these information products. We have our own domain company; it’s called onegreenhost.com. It’s completely carbon neutral domain hosting and we launched that this year. We’ve launched an affiliate program called revsharenow.com where we have all of our products available for affiliates who want to sign up and remarket these really quality conscious educational products, and we built that system our self this year. And those are all of the things that we’re doing. We created another thing called a landing page generator. When you want to build a landing page for your information product, you know, it has to have a lot of very specific components. If you look at the, kind of the best practices of marketing information products, there has to be quite a bit of information on a sales page. And so we’ve built a system, an infrastructure that allows non-technical people to actually build their own web pages for their own e-books, upload photos, they’re really beautiful. Talk Show Tips was created that way, speakupwithpower.com was created that way. We have a number of our other relationship products, expandherotonight.com; those are all built with our landing page generator. So what Tim and I have done is essentially created a publishing division where we both take an expert and coach them entirely through the process of creating and launching their own e-book with benefits, as well as all the technology. Everything from, oh gosh, you know, getting really good images so you’re not stealing peoples images and using them incorrectly, to landing page generator and hosting and email marketing and affiliate marketing and all those pieces that for a lot of people, maybe yourself included, you might have a book in you but it’s so daunting to do all the technology infrastructure, the connectivity that it takes to do auto responders and pay-per-click and search engine optimization and all those things that it holds you back from sharing maybe some really great information that you can provide to the world. And so Tim and I have both our Personal Life Media network, as well as now launching this downloadable book publishing division. We should probably give it a different name, but we just call it all Personal Life Media. So if you are in affiliate marketing and any of these titles, 18 titles that are in our queue that we’re launching, sound like they might be something that you think you could sell on your website. We have amazing assets in our affiliate system, including some video banners by Innovate Media, as well as standard banners. We even create email content for you to email out to your lists. We create email for your blog posts if you want to blog about our products. And we also create Tweets, you can Tweet that link back to the product and include your affiliate link.
Susan Bratton: So we’re trying to be very clever about what we do with our conscious affiliate network, revsharenow.com. And we’re also looking for an affiliate manager, someone who understands the information product marketing world and who can help us because we have so many people that we already know that we’d like to contact about being affiliates that if you are interested or you know someone who is, let them connect with us. You can see the job posted at personallifemedia.com. That’s kind of what we’re doing with the whole information product world. I launched Talk Show Tips – that was the very first product – and I’m working on a new upgrade to that, a bigger system. Talk Show Tips is a hundred dollar product. It’s $297, but you can get a discount through me to get it for $97 dollars. And I’m launching an expanded product called Masterful Interviews that will really move from beyond the podcast world, the podcaster world and teaching podcasters in radio and television talk show hosts how to do it, to being very specific about people who want to create their own content and do their own e-books and want to do great interviews as a part of that, how to get through the process of doing that, everything from vocal technique, which is really, really important, to understanding video SEO and some of those unique attributes that are often used by information product marketers to market their products.
Susan Bratton: So I’m doing a teleseminar this far. It’s tentatively tired Master Interviews Teleseminar, and I’m doing that with two people. I’m doing it as a three part series. So if you want to learn how to become a really good interviewer for any number of things, you might like this. There’s going to be very nominal fee to be in this teleseminar. It’s going to be three unique trainings. It’s going to be myself teaching about interviewing techniques, as well as using some social media to radiate your work, as well as coming up with great questions, I’m going to try to cover those things and provide a lot of background for you. I’ve got Jody Colvard who runs a business called Be a Show Host, she’s at beashowhost.com, and Jodi teaches you everything from lighting and positioning to hair and makeup, and she’s going to be really talking about the backend systems of being a show host. And then Bob Corff is a famous vocal coach. I mean, Samuel L. Jackson, Christopher Walken, he is their vocal coach, and he’s going to talk about some of the things that you can do to have more confidence and to sound better when you’re doing your interviews. And so I’m really excited to have a celebrity vocal coach as a part of the teleseminar series. So you’ll be hearing more about that ‘cause I’m putting that together with Bob and Jodi right now. And, so that’s what’s going on.
Susan Bratton: This year as well I’ve been doing a lot of speaking and the theme du jour, the theme du year – what would that be, the theme du alms, I’m sure I said that wrong – is social media super powers. I keynoted the Marcom ’09 Conference in Amsterdam this year and that was my subject. I’ve spoken at Stamford on that. The ladies who launch have had me in to speak about social media super powers. Essentially people want to understand the connective tissue between Face Book, Twitter, Linked In, your own work, your blog, your podcast; how do you connect it all together, what are the right ways to do it, what can you leverage as far as feeds and syndication to get more distribution of your content, yet not feel like all you’re doing is pushing your junk out. And I know I ride a very fine line for that. Some of you might have unfollowed me because I Twitter too much about my stuff; I get that. You know, you just have to try to find your way through these things, but that’s what I’ve been sharing with people on the keynotes that I’ve been doing and the speeches that I’ve been doing this year, and I am doing a keynote at Blog World Expo, managing a keynote there and would love to speak with you. It’s not on social media super powers, but it is about the business of blogging, and I’m going to interview three famous women bloggers and we’re going to talk about blogging and what the status of blogging is today with regard to generating revenue, how you can make money in that business and what the opportunities are specifically for women. So that’ll be at Blog World in October in Vegas.
Susan Bratton: I also had the opportunity to do something really fun. I did a bloggers junk it this summer in July. There were a dozen of us and we were called The Traveling Geeks. We went to London and Cambridge. The country of England, The National Endowment For The Science Technology and the Arts and an organization called East of England that manages, it’s kind of a booster organization for the city of Cambridge England, they came together and paved the way for a dozen bloggers from the US to come over and do a lot of interaction with the entrepreneurs – I call them the europreneurs – in those two markets. And so it was myself, JD Lasica, who’s one of the people who started it with Jeff Saperstein and Renee Blodgett – of course you probably know her, she’s the number one PR blogger. We went with Robert Scoble – I’m sure you know of him – Sarah Lacey, Craig Newmark – the founder of Craig’s List – there was a large list of us, a dozen bloggers. We went to London, we met with a lot of early stage companies, as well as very established companies like British Telecom so that we could learn what the state of social media, we apps, consumer web services, innovative new technologies being used for everything from customer support to managing innovation. E Consultancy had us over for a roundtable. And I got to meet a lot of these europreneurs and be exposed to a lot of new technologies and apps that we don’t have here in the US that we’re not really hearing about. And I did a lot of blogging about it. You can find it at dishymix.com, and you can also go to travelinggeeks.com and see not only my contributions, but the contributions of all of the geeks about what they were finding with regard to new capabilities.
Susan Bratton: I thought it would be fun to tell you about some of the apps that I liked the best and things that I am now using. I would say probably the two that I learned about, the first was in Amsterdam, I learned about Moby Picture, and if you’ve listened to Dishy Mix you know that I love that app. What I love about it is that it’s a syndication tool for my photos, my videos and my audio clips. And I can essentially use my phone or my web browser to upload an image to Moby and it distributes it across all of my different social applications. So I shoot once and share everywhere, which I really like. I can’t do that with Twit Pick or some of the other products, which are, you know, focus solely on Twitter. What I like about Moby is it’s a, really what I consider to be a social media metatool, and some of the other apps that I’m going to tell you about are also like that; timesavers, in that you’re posting once and sharing across.
Susan Bratton: Another app that I love, love, love is called Zemanta. These are the kind of apps that you don’t even like to tell people about because it gives you a competitive edge. But you are my Dishy Mix listener and I love you, and I will tell you everything I know because I want you to get so much from my show. So Zemanta, z-e-m, as in Mary, a-n-t-a, Zemanta is a download that you do to your Fire Fox browser, it’s a Fire Fox extension that works with your Word Press blog, and it tells you when you’re blogging, it gives you recommendations for other stories about that subject to which you could link. It gives you images that are generated across social apps and Fickr that allow you to drag those images right into your blog post without having to go do a search and download and upload and find them, it literally, vwoop, drags them right into your blog post. What else does it do? It lets you automatically tag things and it lets you automatically hyperlink the keywords in there that it can find links to. It links to Wikipedia, it’ll link to a persons website. It’s an amazing tool that makes your blogging not only richer but more efficient. So I really like that a lot. Oh, and I forgot to tell you on Moby Picture, it’s Moby, m-o-b-y, Picture, not Pictures, mobypicture.com. It’s a good one.
Susan Bratton: Another one that I really like a lot that I’m just starting to use is a company called Huddle. Now Andy McLoughlin, one of the co-founders, is coming over here in September, and Huddle is essentially the next generation of bass camp. If you use any collaborative tools for working with other people – sharing files, uploading things, having threaded discussions – Huddle is the next generation of that. What Huddle allows you to do is integrate it into some of your social networks, and it’s kind of like the social collaboration tool. You should definitely check it out. They have a free version, and if you’re doing any kind of online collaboration I think you’ll like it.
Susan Bratton: Another company that I’m very high on is a company that’s called Uber Vu. I mentioned it in an earlier show. It’s u-b-e-r- v-u, dot come. And what Uber Vu does is allow you to track the threads of comments from your various posts. So lets say you have a blog and you’re blogging about something, or you share something on Face Book, or you Twitter it, lets just say you Twitter something and it happens to syndicate into your Face Book feed ‘cause you’ve got your Twitters going to your Face Book page. Well someone could’ve commented on it or re- Tweeted it or whatever in Twitter, or they could’ve commented, “Oh, I like this” or “I’m commenting on this”, in Face Book. For you to go track all that stuff, it ends up that you have to check in multiple places and reply in multiple places, and when you reply, the people you reply to in Face Book, the Twitter people don’t see that. So what Uber Vu does is it threads all of your comments into a single UI so that you can reply and track everything everyone is saying about your blogs, your Tweets, your Face Book posts, etcetera. So if you’re a very active social media content producer and you want to see what everything is that’s being said about that particular post across your networks, Uber Vu is a great way to do it.
Susan Bratton: So those are some of my favorites; Huddle, Zemanta, Uber Vu, Moby Picture. And the last is Unbound Technology. I’ve also mentioned them on the show and I’m still really learning about it and playing with it. But what’s fascinating to me about what Unbound does is that they essentially look at, you can upload your database into it as a brand or as an individual, and they will look at who is out in the market, who is on the social media platforms, who has a lot of followers and who is talking about you or your brand. They can pull in the social listening with the influencer metrics. What’s neat about it is that you can actually see who the most influential people are that are connected to you or to your brand. It’s an obvious opportunity for partnership, for affiliations, for joint ventures. It makes a lot of sense when there’s overlap between your group, your followers and your friends who have a lot of followers. I think it’s just being explored, and I’m really interested to learn where it’s all going and what the, how brands and individuals are leveraging it to further the conversation about what they’re doing on the web. So if you are working in that vain I’d love to hear from you about that.
Susan Bratton: The only other thing that I wanted to let you know about that I am writing about right now, I’m endlessly fascinated by consumer web applications. Like today I saw that Animoto Now allows you to upload not just still images but video clips and integrate them together to create an animated video with a really rockin’ soundtrack that has both stills and video. Everything’s going this way, and I like to keep up with them and I can’t. And so one of the things that I recently did is a series of blog posts, they’re called Europreneur – you can just go to dishymix.com and search on the keyword ‘Europreneur’. And I asked many of the most interesting people that I met on the Traveling Geeks junk it what applications they can’t live without, because there are web apps from all over the world, tons of great stuff coming out of Europe like Spotify and others, and Uber Vu and Huddle and Zemanta and Moby Picture, there are so many great ones that I said, “Okay, well which ones are you all using as these kind of cutting edge web entrepreneurs? What can’t you live without, ‘cause we want to try the stuff you’re using over there?” And so I don’t think we do a very good job of that. I think we’re a little, you know, ethnocentric in the tools that we use as American social media and web marketing fiends. So I have been blogging their responses and giving you links to them to check out, but I thought I’d go over a couple of the interesting ones with you.
Susan Bratton: One of them is from Jack Lange. Now I’m not sure if you listened to my interview with Jack. He’s the entrepreneur in residence that teaches at the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge. He wrote The High Tech Entrepreneurs Handbook. He’s a Cambridge Angel, so he’s been funding technology start-ups out of Cambridge for years. He’s a terrific guy. And he turned me onto something called World Card Mobil. You might’ve seen a post I did recently where I said, you know, I don’t want to scan my business cards anymore. The Pokins, nobody has a Pokin. You know, nobody has these digital things. Why am I getting a business card and taking it home and entering it and then connecting with you on Face Book, connecting with you on Linked In, seeing if you have a Twitter thing and following you there; it’s like a huge pain in the butt to add a single person to your database these days, yet, you know, you kind of feel compelled to do it. And so Jack heard me, you know, ranting about that, and he said, “Try World Card Mobil.” It’s an app that lets you scan the card with your cell phone and it’ll automatically upload it to your Outlook. Now I’m a Mac girl, so that didn’t quite work for me, but it probably works for you ‘cause that’s the, you know, obviously the most people in the world are on that and you might want to check that out.
Susan Bratton: I also talked to Alan Moore, he’s got a new book coming out, and he’s with Small, Medium Large, Extra Large, that’s his company, and two of the ones that you might be interested in for him are Scrivner, that’s s-c-r-i-v-n-e-r. Essentially it’s a piece of software that allows you to organize chaotic ideas for writing. Now you may be working on your new e-book now that you know what’s going on with that, or you might be working on a Power Point presentation or you might be writing a document for a client or a creative brief or a business plan; we do so much writing. I like… and we have a lot of chaotic ideas. So I thought that that one might be an application that’d be interesting for you. And he also uses something called Nova Mind, and that’s a mind mapping application. Mind mapping is more and more useful, and I certainly like to do it. You know, I have my little strategy I call The Grid where I take a post-it note for every idea and I slap them down, slap them down, slap them down, slap them down – you can see this on my Talk Show Tips page, I teach you how to do it there. And then I cluster my ideas and then I organize them into a flow; that’s how I come up with my interview questions, how I organize my interview questions. But you might like Nova Mind. You know, that’s a really interesting new technology.
Susan Bratton: Another couple of great ideas I got from Andy Hobsbawm; Andy is, he is the chairman of agency.com UK and he has also started a company called Do The Green Thing, and it’s a site that helps people understand the changes they can make in their personal behavior to decrease global warming. And two of the apps that he told me about sound really good to me. One is Send U It. Now I’ve been using You Send It for FTPing, for sending large files to people when email chokes on them, and I got a lot of large files being a podcaster and an e-book creator. And Send U It is so simple, I love it. You just go to Send U It, it’s s-e-n-d, the letter u, i-t, dot com, you type in the persons email address, you upload the file and you send it. There’s not need to log in every time you want to FTP somebody a file. So that’s an easy sweet one. And then another one that I really like is Screen Grab. It’s a Fire Fox extension that lets you grab any screen automatically. That is just a super simple app. What I liked about Andy’s was they were the super simple apps, like, “Yeah, I need that, easy.” Another one that, lets see, these are two…Ooh, I’ve got three from Mathys van Abbe. Mathys is the founder of Moby Picture and he gave me three apps that he really likes that he uses all the time. The first is a visual start page, it’s called Start Pix, s-t-a-r-t, p-i-x. And Start Pix is really cool because it’s a visual start page and I love visualization. That’s why I like mind mapping, that why Nova Mind was interesting from Alan. If you like visual, you might like to try Start Pix. Another one that you might like is a collaborative musicians tool. It’s called Sound Cloud. I think these guys are out of Berlin. If you are uploading audio files or collaborating on audio files at all, Sound Cloud might be a really good app for you. Alan also mentioned something called Note Flight, which is also a collaborative musical tool. And then the last one from Mathys is called Play For Square. It’s a location based mobile application. So if you like to connect, if you like to know the people who are around you, who are in your vicinity and you want to connect with them, whether you know them or not, playforsquare.com is probably the most advanced location based mobile app that there is out there right now. And, you know, we’re all just playing with that and seeing what’s interesting about it. If you want to hear a really good interview of the future, of a location based mobile, computing mobile apps, an interview that I did at South By Southwest with Chris Brogan is very good. Not the Dishy Mix interview that I just did with Chris, but one I did for Powered called Community Powered at South By Southwest last year. Chris talks about a lot of the future potential of location based mobile apps, especially tying it back to marketer opportunities. And you can just go to dishymix.com and search on Chris Brogan and you’ll find it. It’s really interesting. So check that one out.
Susan Bratton: Alright. Well those are some of the things that I got from my europreneur prodding and I continue to post those, so you’ll find more since I’ve recorded this episode. And if you like some of these apps or if you have apps to recommend, I’d love to hear from you about that. I like to surface these things that not only are fun but hopefully make our lives better. The last apps that I want to tell you about came out of my recent interview with Chris Brogan, the recent Dishy Mix interview with Chris. If you haven’t listened to that, please do. He has a new book out called Trust Agents that I’m very interested in. It’s the whole, you know, social media, we have to understand our relationship with people when we’re using the social web, and he’s done a great job talking about that, being an agent zero. Batch Blue is a company that I am very impressed with. Chris mentioned it, I went to check it out, I’ve already in the last week fallen in love with this product. It’s to me one of those things like Zemanta, that changed the way I work for the better, for the faster and made it easier. Batch Blue is a mini sales force dot com, it’s an address book, it’s a database, it’s a contact management system. And when I say CMS I don’t want to say content management system, I want to say contact management system. And what it allows you to do, here’s what I did; I had my address book and it had, you know, 12,000 records in it, and a lot of them were age, people have left and they’ve moved and I don’t do a really good job of keeping it up with it all, I try. And then I have my Linked In, I’ve got, you know, four or five thousand people on Linked In and those are more updated, people keep their Linked In updated, right. So what I did was I downloaded my Linked In contact database, I output and uploaded both my address book and my Linked In contact database up into my Batch Blue system, and then it merged them so I at least had the latest records in there without losing my data. Then I can take other lists and spreadsheets and things like that that I have and upload those into my database on Batch Blue. And what’s great about it is it has both de-duping and merging. It’s a web app. It works on your iPhone, so it’s iPhone optimized and Blackberry optimized so you can see it on your phone. If you’re, you know, you don’t have your computer with you you can still have access to your contacts and you can merge everything, and then you can download it again and bring it back into your address book so that it’s all cleaned and de-duped. The other really cool thing that I like about it so far is that it has tagging, so I can go through my lists of people and I can tag and group people and super tag them. The next thing that I’m working on figuring out is how you can also track people, so if they Twitter or they’re on Face Book you can actually see the latest things that they’ve posted and Tweeted, so if you go into their record you can have some of the latest social activity that they’ve done on the web right in front of you without going elsewhere to look it up. I think that’s going to be a really huge next step for me that I haven’t taken yet, but I hope to report back to you on that. So I’ll continue to give you reports on how that’s working for me, but so far I really love it. Check it out.
Susan Bratton: Oh yeah, there’s one more thing. You get a Batch Box email address, and when you copy or blind copy that email address on an email correspondence if it’s a new contact it automatically sends it to your database and adds the contact information from their email footer and creates a new card, so you don’t have to enter new contacts into your database. Now of course what you can do is you can get your database organized, then you can output it and you can put it back into Face Book or Linked In and send out a request to connect for the people who aren’t connected to you already. It gives you another level of being able to connect with people if you haven’t done that for a while on Linked In or on Face Book. So, you know, getting all this stuff organized is becoming a little bit easier and thank goodness, it’s an awesome app. So check that one out too. Pamela O’hara is the president of the company and she was, I just want to thank her for, you know, kind of educating me and thank Chris for telling me about it. And they have one more cool feature; it’s called Shoe Boxed. And Shoe Boxed – it might be Shoe Boxer – is a service where you can mail them your business cards, they’ll scan them in and they’ll automatically add them to your contact database. So those two companies have a coalition together, which is super cool, which means that if you come back from a conference and you’ve got 150 business cards you just send them to Shoe Boxed and they will, vroop, automatically make them go right into your contact database.
Susan Bratton: Alright, well that’s enough about that. I hope that’s been helpful for you. I hope you’ve discovered at least one web app you want to check out. Again, send me any new ones that you have, I’d love to hear about them. I hope that it was for you to hear what I’ve been up to. I hope I’ll see you at Blog World Expo or at Ad Tech New York where I’ll be in November. And that’s it. I’m really, really hoping you’re having a great summer. I’m off to Burning Man and I send my best to you. Have a great day. I am your host, Susan Bratton. Bye-bye.