photography blog

If you would like me to photograph your event, your team, your town, or anything else; please do get in touch.

You can find further examples of my work on my gallery page, Flickr and Instagram.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Web page speeds

An article on the BBC website reports that the page sizes on the top websites have grown 33% in the last twelve months.

This doesn't surprise me. With the increase in interactive adverts I have noticed that some pages take far too long to download.

Why is this so important?

Firstly, Google measures the speed of your website and will reward you with higher rankings if they download fast.

Secondly, more people access the web on their smartphones with slower network speeds.

So the lesson is, strip away superfluous content and animations and ensure that each of your web pages is focused on what is needed.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Measure your Twitter Influence

I have just come across Kred which is a website that measures your influence on Twitter and could help you improve the way you use the platform.

The difference between this and the other main social analytics tool, Klout, is that Kred explains how your numbers add up.

You can also add in offline activities to see if that boosts your score. So if you are President of the USA, you get 500,000 points! If you run half marathons, you get 2000 points....

It's worth checking out and you can have some fun comparing your scores with people you know too.

Friday, 16 December 2011

How consumers are interacting with brands on social media

Here is a link to an interesting article and infographic from aytm (ask your target market) about how consumers interact with brands on Facebook and Twitter.

Key takeaways:

74% Facebook users visit daily

58% Facebook users have 'liked' a brand

80% wants coupons, discounts and promotions, compared to 8% who want brand news and 5% who have questions....

32% get updates from their brands via social media, 27% via email marketing, 22% via traditional offline ads

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Why Google+ will endure

Below is a link to a very interesting interview with Chris Brogan and why he thinks Google+ will become an established social media platform.

I am inclined to agree:

1)  Google has deep pockets

2) Google are integrating Google+ with their popular products including Gmail, YouTube, Blogger and Reader.

3) Google dominates the search market and the more your Google+ profile works with your search, the more relevant it will become.

Here is the article.


Monday, 12 December 2011

Online shopping infographic

Thanks to Neil at from you to me for sending me this useful infographic from Zone Alarm with some statistics about online shopping at Christmas and how to be more secure.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Social media news round up

Just a few news stories that have recently come to light:

Flipboard is being launched for the iPhone in the Apple App Store later today. This has been a very popular app on the iPad for looking at various social media feeds and popular websites.

Facebook Timelines is beginning to rollout after testing. New Zealand will be the first country to see its features.

Geolocation app Foursquare now has 15 million users. Whilst it continues to grow, this is still a low penetration of smartphone users. With Facebook's recent purchase of Gowalla (seemingly a talent grab) the future of geolocation marketing looks like it will be dominated by Facebook Places.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

What's new in Google Analytics?

Google has been introducing its new design across its various products over recent weeks. This has included a major overhaul of Google Analytics.

Five new features that are particularly interesting:

1) Real time statistics
I think I may waste a lot of time looking at these! You can now see who is looking at your website as it happens instead of waiting 24 hours. You can see how long they spend on the site, which pages they are looking at, whether they are a new or returning visitor and so much more.

Read more from the Google Analytics blog.

2) Site Speed
Google has been hinting that page load times are now an important factor in organic search rankings and so this feature becomes an important metric to measure your website success.

3) Visitor flow
There is a new way of visualising how your visitors go from page to page which makes it easier to see their behaviour.

Read more from the Google Analytics blog.

4) Social Engagement
There is now a report which measures how successful your website is engaging with your visitors. The report tells you how many Google +1, Facebook 'Likes' and tweets each page is receiving.

5) Keyword Cloud
Finally, another visual change which helps you see important information quickly. This shows what keywords your site visitors are searching for that come to your site.

If would like more information on these new features, or feel that it's time for a review of your website, please contact me.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Using social media to attract customers

Here is a link to an interesting article about attracting customers using social media. 

This is the main objective for many businesses using social media. It's not easy, nor an exact science, but with focus it can be done. 

There are two passages from the article that are particularly interesting. The first is from Joe Chernov, VP of Content Marketing at Eloqua:

Social media allows marketers to do two things they couldn’t do before: scale one-to-one conversations and publish their own content without a media partner

The second observation is from Carolyn Everson, Facebook’s VP of Global Sales who

... told attendees at a media event earlier this year that she considered acquiring “Likes” to be the second phase for marketers on Facebook after setting up a brand Page. The third was using Facebook to cultivate your biggest and most-engaged fans

Here is a link to the original article from Mashable

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Kingston Mill Photos

Since I moved to Bradford on Avon in 2006, seeing the Kingston Mill site being transformed has been fascinating. 

I have taken a series of photos throughout the process and I am currently editing them into a book.

The development is an exciting one for the town. The site stood derelict for 15 years and is now host to new homes and shops. Soon, new restaurants will open too and the regeneration will be compete. 

Thoughts on Google+

Google+ was launched 5 months ago as Google's latest attempt to establish a popular social media platform to rival Facebook and Twitter. 

Recent figures suggest it has registered users in excess of 40m (whereas Facebook has over 700m and rising, Twitter has 200m). This is a meteoric rise and they got to that number much quicker than their rivals.

I personally think they have done a good job introducing new functionality. My particular favourite is Circles which enables you to divide your contacts into groups and communicate different things to each circle.

I also find it easier to use than Facebook and it looks better.

At present there are a lack of active users. 

I do have a number of contacts on there but, like me, they still use Twitter or Facebook more. 

There is also a fair amount of repetition between Facebook posts, tweets and RSS feeds. This is understandable while people take time to decide how to best use each different social media platform.

The future

I think Google+ will succeed. Maybe not in it's current format, but the fact that it is being integrated into YouTube and Google Search (via the +1 button) means that it will be present in most peoples lives one way or another.

Google+ Pages

Google+ pages have recently been launched for businesses and organisations.

I will write more about this in a future post.


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