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Eight Elements of a Compelling Social Media Profile

You know that if you want to elevate your name and business, using social media is the way to do it today. However, if you really want it to make a difference without wasting your time and effort, it’s important to understand how to create a compelling social media profile. Here are eight key elements to include.

1. An Interesting Picture of Your Face – If you want people to trust you, they need to see your eyes and face. The more centered and easier it is for your viewers to see your face, the more likely they are to find you interesting and trustworthy.

2. A Telling Display Name – Your display name depends on the platform. In some cases, just using your own name is the very best way to use the “display name” feature. After all, you want people to know you as you. However, if you want to be known by a certain name or handle or persona, that’s okay too. For instance, TaxMama may use her name, Eva Rosenberg, EA, or her handle and you know who it is.

3. A Keyword-Rich Username and URL – This is super-important because you don’t want the URL to be random. The URL needs to have keywords and your username listed in a way that helps people find you.

4. Relevant Links – Within your profile (depending on the system), you need to add links to the information about you that you want your viewers to know. It might be links to your content, to your portfolio, or when allowed, groups and products you are promoting.

5. A Short but Audience-Centered Bio – When you write your bio (or any “about me”) information, it’s important to think of yourself in the third person and describe yourself for your audience in a way that your audience will relate to. Remember – it’s all about them and what’s in it for them, even when it’s about you.

6. A Little Extra Info about You and Your Interests – If you really want to become a real person in the minds of the people who view your profile and read your content, it’s important to also offer to them a little extra information about your interests and hobbies in a way that helps them connect to you on a human level.

7. A Background or Cover Image That Draws Your Audience – The background image that you share can offer further information about you and how to contact you outside of the platform you’re using.

8. Updated, Relevant, and Consistent Activity – Even though this is not about your profile data exactly, it is important to ensure that your profile on the platform is viewed by the people you want it to be viewed by. Make sure you put consistent, relevant content up on your profile on a regular basis.

Start with these fixes to your profiles and then ensure that you tweak them slightly for each platform to ensure that your vibe matches the vibe of that network. For example, LinkedIn is a more buttoned-up business version of Facebook or Twitter. And Facebook and Twitter are also very different from each other.

If you work on ensuring your profile speaks to your audience and gives them the right feeling, they’ll be sure to follow you.

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Eight Tips on Dealing with PR Disasters

Eight Tips on Dealing with PR Disasters

One of the problems that most small business owners fear is a public relations nightmare. Sadly, this can happen to almost any business owner who is in the public eye in some way. You never know when a comment will go viral – and worse, when it will be misunderstood in some way. If you ever find yourself dealing with a PR disaster, you’ll want to try to implement these tips.

1. Don’t Ignore the Situation

You cannot avoid bad situations. If something is harming your businesses or your reputation, you need to confront it. Even if it’s true and you’re ashamed, you can often overcome the problem by being open and honest and then working to fix the problem. If it’s not true, you will only look guilty if you don’t get ahead of the story.

2. Don’t Think That Your Reputation Will Save You

Even if up until now you’ve had a spotless reputation, a particular type of PR situation can overshadow your reputation – even if it’s false. The only way to fix someone’s erroneous perception is to tackle it head on in the bright light of day.

3. Don’t Wait until the Situation Has Exploded to Deal with It

If you already know something might come out to the public that you don’t want to, don’t wait. It’s not going to help anyone. Do what you can to mitigate any situation before it explodes. If you didn’t know about it and it’s false, you still don’t want to let it keep proliferating without a response from you.

4. Be Sincere and Honest

If you did do something that was not true or it was misleading in some way (even if you didn’t realize it consciously), once your public finds out it’s time to come clean. So many social media stars could have kept their careers if only they had responded appropriately to being outed for their misleading information.

5. Don’t Avoid Communication with Affected Customers and Stakeholders

Remember that you have many stakeholders – from your partner, to your kids, to your employees, contractors, customers, and possibly investors depending on the type of business that you are running. Every one of them needs to have communication from you regarding the issue in the terms that they will understand best.

6. Document Everything

When something happens, if you document it, you can often avoid it happening again. Sometimes a breakdown in communication is responsible for the nightmare. Other times it’s trusting the wrong vendors. Whatever it is, if you go through what happened, you can identify the problems that got you here so that you can avoid them next time.

7. Plan for a Crisis

Take some time to consider the various issues that you can face in your line of work. Make a list of possibilities so that you can plan for any type of crisis that might happen. That way, you know what to do. Plus, by writing it down you will often avoid the problem to start with as you identify causes.

8. Don’t Act in a Defensive Manner

If you’re experiencing a PR disaster right now, try not to behave defensively. If you’ve done nothing wrong, explain yourself with confidence. If you have made a mistake, admit it openly and honestly without being angry that you were discovered or that someone pointed it out.

If you really want to avoid dealing with PR disasters, the best way to do it is to create a plan for your public persona for answering questions in a way that your audience responds positively to, while always being honest. If something goes down, take the blame for your poor communication and try to do better next time.

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Eight Seemingly Harmless Habits That Are Actually Bad for You

Eight Seemingly Harmless Habits That Are Actually Bad for You

Just like there are bad habits that are actually good for you, there are things that people do habitually that they think are good when they’re really not. Maybe it seemed logical but then turned out not to be true once science looked at it.

1. Squeezing Your Pimples – Many people like to squeeze their pimples (or spots as some people call them), but this is not good for you. If you don’t do it right, you could end up with a nasty skin infection. Talk to your doctor about the right way to deal with skin issues, so you don’t hurt yourself more than you think you do.

2. Eating Unnaturally “Low-Fat” Food – Due to all the bad press that fat gets, a lot of people think they’re doing the right thing when they buy low-fat milk, low-fat cheese, low-fat dressing and so forth – but it’s not good for you. The main reason is that they usually replace the fat with sugar to make it palatable. Eating natural fat is much better for you than sugar, plus it satiates you longer.

3. Eating Six Small Meals a Day – This is a common diet idea that people think they need to follow. It’s common in all types of diet plans and is supposed to help control hunger by keeping your blood sugar steady. Sadly, studies are showing that this doesn’t really work because people who eat smaller meals report being hungrier more than those who eat fewer larger meals.

4. Drinking Bottled Water over Tap Water – Most bottled water is infected with plastic residue. If you live in a place with potable tap water, you should use it. You can get an in-home filtering system that will cut down on chemicals like bleach and fluoride.

5. You Drink Juice Every Day – One problem with juice, even if it’s freshly squeezed, is that all the fiber has been removed. When you drink juice without the fiber in it, you are just bombarding your body with a high dose of sugar that your body thinks is just sugar.

6. You Don’t Eat Carbs – Many people see friends giving up carbs and gluten, so they think this is for them. The truth is if you have no medical conditions that are helped with a low-carb or no-gluten diet, you could be harming your health. People without health conditions need carbs – including fruit, veggies, and grains.

7. You Do Juice and Smoothie “Fasts” – Lots of people today like to do “detoxes” to clean their bodies, and often this manifest with smoothies or juices. The bad thing is, most of the time these are high-fruit-based recipes that can really harm your blood sugar and your metabolism.

8. You Work Out for Hours Per Day – Exercise is good for you, but professional athletes know that daily training is not actually good for anything other than ensuring high performance on the day of the contest or event. Normal people should not train daily like that at that level, and should take breaks from working out.

If you already do some of these things, research them further so you’ll see for yourself that these are not really good for you to do regularly after all.

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Eight “Bad” Habits That Are Actually Good for You

EightBadHabits That Are Actually Good for You

Believe it or not, some bad habits are really good for you. Sadly, our parents usually try to punish us out of or control us out of doing these things. Of course, everything in moderation, right? Let’s look at eight “bad” habits that are actually good for you that you can stop trying to end now.

1. Fidgeting – If you tend to wiggle a lot, your mom probably tried to stop it. Your partner might try too. However, fidgeting is really good for you because it burns more calories and keeps your blood moving. This is especially true if you have a job that requires a lot of sitting. Sitting is possibly worse for you than smoking, so anything that can undo that damage is a good thing.

2. Gum Chewing – Sugarless gum is really good for you. If you have the right dental work or your own teeth, chewing gum burns calories, helps you eat less, freshens your breath and also cuts down on cavities.

3. Video Games – While there may be some games that aren’t worth the added benefit, playing video games helps with developing fine motor skills, keeps the mind nimble, and by some reports can help give relief for chronic pain conditions by taking your mind off the problem.

4. Daydreaming – Finding a way to allow your mind to get bored enough to be able to daydream is very good for your mind as well as for your goals in life. You cannot create amazing goals for your life if you can’t daydream.

5. Swearing – Everyone has a swear jar growing up, either for parents or the kids. Swearing is considered inappropriate, but studies show that people who swear appropriately tend to have less stress in their lives. Remember that swearing is completely different from a slur. A slur is something you say about a person, whilst a swearword is just a curse word – otherwise known as an expletive.

6. Messiness – If you are a naturally messy person, take heart; you’re likely also a very creative person. Messiness is sometimes a sign of creativity. If you want to be more creative, don’t purposely become messy but realize that sometimes being messy is required to be creative.

7. Sleeping in Late – They say that “the early bird gets the worm,” but do they? Sleeping well and enough each night is important to your health and brain function. If you stayed up late and need to sleep in and it won’t cause you to get fired or miss something important – go for it.

8. Passing Gas – Everyone farts and burps every single day. Passing gas is good for you because it’s a normal activity that is getting rid of built-up gas from your digestive tract to prevent bloating and pain.

Of course, you don’t want to do some of these things when other people are around, but it’s okay to accept some of these things as part of who you are and part of living life. As long as you can choose the habits you create, you can build a life exactly as you want it to be.

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