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Mastering friendfeed Mastering friendfeed Document Transcript

  • Mastering FriendFeed: Your Social Marketing Secret Weapon Need a Fix of Twitter? A Hit of Facebook? Come on – Everybody’s Doing It! When Social Networks Have You Spinning Out of Control, FriendFeed Can Make It All Better! By John Taylor http://MasteringFriendFeed.com
  • Mastering FriendFeed Table of Contents Chapter 1: What Is FriendFeed and Why Do I Want to Use It? ....................................................................................................................... 4 Social Addict Pop Quiz:................................................................................................................4 What Is FriendFeed? ..................................................................................................................4 Why Is FriendFeed Important to Internet Marketers?................................................................6 Chapter 2: Starting at the Very Beginning ....................................................................................................................... 8 Getting Your FriendFeed Account Set Up....................................................................................8 Adding Your Social Feeds and Blogs to FriendFeed...................................................................10 FriendFeed Widget Goodies! ...................................................................................................12 Chapter 3: Mastering the Basics of FriendFeed ....................................................................................................................... 16 Home Page of FriendFeed..........................................................................................................16 Me (Meaning You) on FriendFeed.............................................................................................20 Rooms on FriendFeed................................................................................................................21 Everyone on FriendFeed............................................................................................................24 The Many Views of FriendFeed.................................................................................................24 Friends on FriendFeed...............................................................................................................25 Adding Friends While Surfing the World Wide Web.................................................................29 Chapter 4: How to Interact on FriendFeed ....................................................................................................................... 31 Sharing in FriendFeed................................................................................................................31 Commenting in FriendFeed.......................................................................................................32 Like an Entry...............................................................................................................................33 Hide an Entry..............................................................................................................................34 Chapter 5: Advanced FriendFeed User Tips & Tricks ....................................................................................................................... 36 Advanced Search Function........................................................................................................36 Using Your Email to Post to FriendFeed Using Mail2FF.............................................................37 Advanced Room Search.............................................................................................................38 Accessing Your FriendFeed........................................................................................................38 2
  • Mastering FriendFeed 3 View slide
  • Mastering FriendFeed Chapter 1: What Is FriendFeed and Why Do I Want to Use It? When I first heard about FriendFeed, I thought, “Not another one!” These sites crop up faster than I can learn to master them. But that thought didn’t last long – not once I saw what this baby could do for my branding and exposure on the ‘net. I have to pick and choose which web 2.0 sites will really have an impact on my business. I love Twitter and Squidoo. I’m in Facebook and MySpace. I Weebly, I Ning, and I Knol. I have Hub Pages and a YouTube account. Social marketing and networking with customers is my “thing.” Are you a social marketing Addict like I am? Social Addict Pop Quiz: 1. Do you use Twitter? 2. Do you use YouTube or Flickr? 3. Are you on Facebook or MySpace? 4. Do you leave a trail of bookmarks at Digg, deli.ci.ous, StumbleUpon? 5. Do you monitor blogs of competitors in your chosen niches (if not, you should be!)? 6. Do you spend hours hopping from blog to site to YouTube to Twitter reading what all of your friends and competitors share with the world? 7. Are you ready to take your Internet-based business to the next level of peer-to-peer marketing? If you answered YES to some or all of these questions -- You need FriendFeed! When Ed Dale of the tubbynerd.com & Market Samurai sent out an email about FriendFeed and how it could be the next “big thing” like Twitter, I couldn’t ignore it. As he pointed out, while Twitter had a slow start and few really thought it had any potential to help marketers - well, those naysayers are now tweeting! What Is FriendFeed? Whatever is great about Twitter is now even better because of FriendFeed. FriendFeed allows you to relate back and forth in one convenient spot without the chopped up “resharing” that goes on in Twitter. 4 View slide
  • Mastering FriendFeed Will FriendFeed replace Twitter? Not anytime soon, but it does enhance it. As you’ll see, FriendFeed has a twitter-like feature where you can post a quick message (not character limited, by the way). But FriendFeed works with Twitter and Facebook and Flickr and Digg and StumbleUpon, and on and on - and funnels all of their feeds into your own feed. Don’t get confused just yet – you’ll see how it works shortly! FriendFeed is a social network aggregator. What this means is it can take all of the feeds from dozens of social networking, bookmarking, news, and video sites plus feeds from websites and blogs, which you specify - and “stream” them into one really cool place. Not only that, but you can organize these feeds into smaller groups of interest - your family, the inner circle mastermind group, the Team, favorite marketers – however you want to group them - all in one place. Another big thing is that your FriendFeed feed becomes its own feed that others can subscribe to. So, rather than having a profile like so many other social sites, FriendFeed has your publicly shared RSS and other social stuff gathered in one place. At the time of this writing, there are about 59 (and growing – they take suggestions at FriendFeed) different social sites here. You can choose to be public or private. You can hide someone’s constant twittering but enjoy their Flickr photos and YouTube videos. As you can imagine, this could get noisy with all of your friends’ feeds streaming into one place. But then FriendFeed has a way to tune out the noise and sort, so that you can get just the stuff you really want. It’s so very flexible and yet functional. 5
  • Mastering FriendFeed So if you want to follow John Taylor, you can type my name into the Friend > Find and if I’m a member, then you can subscribe to my feed. You then get to read anything I’ve added to my feed. My feed is located here: https://friendfeed.com/johntaylor As you can imagine, if you know a lot of people and you also have a lot of memberships in a lot of different social sites – this is a LOT of input. But the point is, with FriendFeed, it’s ALL in one place so you no longer have to hunt and peck for the information you want. Let’s say you wanted to tell your inner circle email list about the latest webinar and you needed some instant input - you could post your query here. Not only that, but FriendFeed can sort and filter what you want to read and then you can tell it what you would rather ignore. If you’re following a particular marketer or product launch, you can input certain parameters that give you information just for that specific topic. FriendFeed is all about creating and following conversations about anything you could possibly be interested in. Why Is FriendFeed Important to Internet Marketers? The potential for marketers is phenomenal. Using FriendFeed, we can do some ethical spying on the competition – what is Joe Blow marketer talking about in Twitter or YouTube? You can catch the banter wherever it is on the ‘net. Another big thing is picking up on “desperate” problems that infoprenuers love to take advantage of. (For example, hearing everyone ask, “How can I use Twitter for Internet Marketing?” helped spur me into setting up Twitter For Internet Marketers). Type in the subject of your choice and follow it. Pay attention to comments that gripe about or praise something. Put together an eBook. FriendFeed allows you to be “human” (or real) to your public. As marketers, it’s important to let our customers and prospects get to know us and also be accessible through the comments aspect of FriendFeed. We all know that the marketer of the future is not the fly-by-night big wheeler-dealer who hides behind a snazzy website and collects his ca$h. The consumer is too smart for that these days – and doesn’t trust just anyone. The current consumer is getting wary of sales pitches, so they run the other way and even leave scam reports about you if you rip them off. With FriendFeed, you can be accessible by all who care to know you. FriendFeed will make it simpler for you to be a leader in your field. If people see you commenting in Twitter, leaving an informative video in YouTube, and then adding to your blog, you become an icon of sorts – a leader of a tribe. 6
  • Mastering FriendFeed Seth Godin says in his newest book, Tribes, that the most influential marketing of the future is all about being a leader in your field (no matter how narrow) and that this is the wave of the next generation of marketers. FriendFeed allows you to interact with your tribe, if you will. I can’t even begin to tell you how big this can be. But for those of you who really know the power of social networking and marketing, this just takes it to the next level – what’s known as Web 3.0. So with that, let’s get started into what could be the most profitable step you could take into your Web 3.0 future! Oh, and just in case you’re wondering who came up with this new, super charged, action packed, full-meal-deal feed aggregate, it’s Bret Taylor, Jim Norris and Co. - formerly from Google. Members of this team made Gmail, Google maps and other cool Google tools. They’ve been impressive leaders in the online tools that we use, so you can trust that FriendFeed won’t be some haphazard attempt at promoting just another social networking site. 7
  • Mastering FriendFeed Chapter 2: Starting at the Very Beginning I always hate it when I read a new eBook that’s supposed to be a how to guide and they leave out the nitty gritty steps. Don’t they know that some of us need some hand holding along the way? If you don’t, that’s fine – skip ahead – but for those who need it, here’s a complete step-by-step for you. Getting Your FriendFeed Account Set Up To sign up for FriendFeed, go to: www.FriendFeed.com and Click Create an Account. You’ll see this page: Fill in the Email address and Name boxes. Then choose a nickname. This could be your name or some other handle you use elsewhere. If you’re using FriendFeed to brand your name, then use your real name. The line on the right will indicate whether or not the nickname is already chosen. You’ll then choose your personal password. Then click on Create my account. You’ll come to a page that looks like this: 8
  • Mastering FriendFeed Here you can choose to aggregate your Facebook friends with one easy step. This causes FriendFeed to “mesh” your Facebook friends into FriendFeed so you have a seamless compilation. You can also quickly import your entire current email list from any of the popular email clients like Gmail, AOL, etc. I don’t do this. Probably because I get bombarded with these kinds of requests on a regular basis and it’s inconvenient. You don’t have to do this part right now, so just skip it – you can add this in later. Skip this step to go to the next page. This is a list of Popular FriendFeeders that you may choose to add to your FriendFeed. It’s great exposure if you can become one of the people popular enough to be featured on this page. Notice good old Ed Dale smack dab in the middle? Subscribe! 9
  • Mastering FriendFeed Here again, unless you see someone you know you want to subscribe to, just hit Next: See your FriendFeed! >> That’s it! No profiles to fill out and blanks to fill with your personal information just to get an account. Why? Well, remember that FriendFeed is taking in your feeds from your other social sites where you’re already established with a profile. FriendFeed simply brings all those feeds into one “clearinghouse” of blurbs and microblogs so friends, family, co-workers, customers, team members and – you name it – can read your feeds. Adding Your Social Feeds and Blogs to FriendFeed I’ll take you through how to add your own feeds to fill out your public FriendFeed – the part that others will want to subscribe to. To add a social network feed, on your Home page, find this button: When you click on it, you get this: [These are not all the services listed. If you don’t see some of your services, click See all 59 (or whatever number is currently there) services.] 10
  • Mastering FriendFeed I want to add my Twitter feed, so I click the Twitter icon and get: You just need to type in your Twitter user name, http://www.twitter.com/JohnTaylor, in my case and hit Import Twitter. Super simple. Now you see Twitter listed in my feeds list. Now you can do that with all of your feeds. For adding a blog RSS, click the orange RSS Blog button and you get this: Here again, it’s as simple as entering your blog’s URL and then clicking Import Blog. It’s instantly added to your own FriendFeed feed and all of the world can find your public media all in one nice place. 11
  • Mastering FriendFeed FriendFeed Widget Goodies! Now you’re part of the cool kids club – part of the FriendFeed family. Time to let the world know, so take a look at this page to see what widgets and bookmarks you can add to your blogs and other sites: http://friendfeed.com/embed/. There’s a badge I can add to my blogs or sites that looks like this (left). To add this, click the text on the left that says, “FriendFeed Badge.” This tells you exactly how to add it depending on where it’s going to be placed. You can choose what shows up, what size it is, what format you want and more. Since I’m about to add it to my WordPress Blog, I’ll click the Image option and the new badge will look a bit smaller, like this: You’ll notice the code changes at the same time. Then I go into my WordPress theme and add it to my sidebar. If you want to see it in action, visit my blog here and look in the right sidebar: John Taylor's Blog 12
  • Mastering FriendFeed The next widget you can use is the “Share on FriendFeed” Link. This is just a little link encouraging people to share your content on their FriendFeed – viral marketing in action. A Feed Widget (shown to the left) is another option you have in your arsenal. You can embed your own personal feed or a feed from a “room” (I’ll cover that in a bit) on any website. It’s like a real time showcase of what your online activity is around the web. The Chiclet widget is similar to the Share on FriendFeed Link widget – just a very compact way to connect your site visitors with FriendFeed. And the status widget it similar to the Feed Widget, only it just showcases your most recently activity – one at a time. You can never assume that everyone’s already on FriendFeed and will find you. You have to be the good host of the party and lead them where they need to go. Many people will never have heard of FriendFeed yet. Now that you’re all set up, let me show you around FriendFeed. 13
  • Mastering FriendFeed Chapter 3: Mastering the Basics of FriendFeed Let’s take a tour now of this amazing tool. First stop is the Home page and we will explore the Left Sidebar first. Home Page of FriendFeed For creating and managing your FriendFeed lists, Home is where you can see all your friends’ feeds coming into one place, including your feeds. This is the default setting. As you can imagine, Home can get very messy with all those feeds coming in. This is easily fixed by segregating your friend’s feeds into smaller lists. Below Home, you can see three more default friend lists: Favorites, Personal, and Professional, which can use or delete, as you want. See the “new list” just below Professional? Here is where you can create any number of lists depending on how you want to sort them. Perhaps you want to feed in The Team, favorite bloggers or Internet Marketing or Favorite “whatever” (sport, hobby, profession etc). You can separate your lists this way to have ready access to each type of feed. Let’s create a new list where I will receive any feeds from gossip or news sites who use FriendFeed. To do that, click new list. You will see this: Type in the name you want. I will choose Marketers. Then hit Create. You will see this next: 14
  • Mastering FriendFeed This would be a good time to talk about adding your friend’s feeds to your list(s). In the above example, I could type in the name of a site or person that has FriendFeed. Once I click Add to friend list, I get to see a selection of names and feeds that have that name and they’re added to that list unless I hover my mouse over them and delete them. Let’s take Rick Butts as an example. (Sorry Rick). I first typed in his name as Rick Butts, with a space. Unfortunately, poor Rick didn’t show up – but someone named Bootylicious did – and I wasn’t too big on being subscribed to them. So here’s what I have to do if I don’t want Bootylicious included in my marketing feed. I have to show you an image here so forgive me but I don’t want you getting stuck with something similar: When I hover my mouse over the thumbnail, a red minus sign pops up. Click it and POOF – Booty is gone from my list. Then, since I KNEW Rick would be on FriendFeed, being the social beast that he is, I tried typing his name in with no spaces and sure enough, there he was so I left him in my feed. 15
  • Mastering FriendFeed Once you begin to populate your lists, you can see at a glance just who is in the list by clicking on the little arrowhead next to the list name. That makes the list open up so you can see each person in the feed. Don’t worry if your friend doesn’t have a FriendFeed yet, you can do two things: You can invite them (which will be covered later) or you can create an imaginary friend (also covered later). Who knew imaginary friends would be for grown-ups, too!? You might also want to delete a list. To delete a list, click on its name. In the upper right corner you will see a button that says Delete list. Click on it and now it’s gone. Across the top of your Home page on the left half, you can see this: Search In the light blue area is the Search field. This is a simple site search engine for your FriendFeed. If I want to find Seth Godin or maybe subscribe to people who are talking about him, I would type his name into the search engine and see what I can find. If I find someone worth subscribing to, I simply hover my mouse over it and click the subscribe plus sign that pops up. You can also search through your specific feed lists. Let’s say I remember John Reese talking about Slum Dog Millionaire, but I didn’t recall the exact conversation. I click the Marketers list, type in Slum Dog, and up comes his post. Post: Message If you click on Message you get: 16
  • Mastering FriendFeed Here is where you can do a quick, on-the-spot entry like you might in Twitter. Say you just read a bit of news or marketing related gossip that got picked up in Google Reader that was worth mentioning. Drop a line in here and send out in your FriendFeed feed. At the bottom of this box it offers a place to insert a link, photo or comment. At the top, where you see a drop down menu, it allows you to post to your group rooms if you have made them. Post: Link Here is what you see when you click on Link: Like posting a message, here you can simply leave text link “message” about a site you want to point your friends to. What’s cool is that you can go to your browser bar, grab the bookmarklet icon and drag it into the http:// box. Just keep in mind that the message you type becomes a hyperlink, so here is where you may want to exercise your SEO skills a bit and type in a text link. For example, if you want to point out a particular launch of a product to call attention to, simply put in the name of the product in the blank and then paste the hyperlink into the URL box. Then to clarify what you just hyperlinked, you can add a comment by clicking the comment button on the bottom. You can even add a photo of the product if you want to. 17
  • Mastering FriendFeed Can you see how powerful this could be? If you have 100s of friends that you follow and who follow you, you have quite a little captive audience! Blast out an interesting URL and start a conversation. This is just one of the many features of FriendFeed that make you more reachable as a marketer. Post: Photos Here you can add a photo or two to share with a comment. As a marketer you have to remember that while you need to maintain momentum with your free valuable information, people also like to feel like they know you. So it’s okay to share the view from your suite on an island and pipe in to say hello. Post: Import Site This is where you can add a feed from one of the many social sites featured in FriendFeed. Suppose you just signed up with Mister Wong. Here is where you can enter your username or feed URL (depending on the site). This then adds your Mister Wong bits to your FriendFeed stream. Me (Meaning You) on FriendFeed Below the lists is Me. Here is where you can see all of your own feeds from wherever you streamed them in. In Me, you can see Tweets from your Twitter account, your latest YouTube features, any blog entries with comments, any photos you put up at Flickr and so on. This is nice because you can see if you’re getting any comments or kudos for your marketing efforts. This is a way to have interaction with your peers and other loyal followers. As marketers, we can use this to effectively monitor the pulse of anyone following us or any of our products. I can’t stress enough about how important it is to be “real” and reachable and here is just one of the many aspects of FriendFeed that does just that. 18
  • Mastering FriendFeed On your Me page, you can also post to your FriendFeed account, but we’ll cover that shortly because it’s also on your Home page. Rooms on FriendFeed Next you will see Rooms, a super cool feature of FriendFeed. Now, this feature alone makes FriendFeed stand out in the crowd. A Room is a place where you can create a smaller, tighter FriendFeed feed that is on one topic or group. It’s not part of your main FriendFeed list (although it can be if you choose it to be). A Room can be Public, Private or Semi-private (public can read or comment, but only admin posts). Here you can have a Room devoted to just one idea like discussing your: • Favorite sport or sports team • Politics • Favorite college or frat/sorority house • Hobby • Antique car buffs • Inner circle of a business • Religious groups • Clubs Let your imagination run wild. Let’s see how to make a room. Click on Rooms. Then at the bottom of the page click on Create a room. You’ll fill out the standard information almost like you were creating a new FriendFeed account. You’ll give the Room a name and a nickname (which becomes its FriendFeed URL, so you have to make sure it’s not already taken). 19
  • Mastering FriendFeed You’ll set the permission levels for access – choosing between public, semi public, and private. Then you’ll invite people to the room. You can invite FriendFeed users or people whose email address you know. You can customize the invite with some special words. So as an example, I’m going to create a room for my Marketing Confidential blog readers. Once it’s created I can customize it by changing the picture of the group from this: To this: I can also start populating it with content using these tools: 20
  • Mastering FriendFeed To the right of your Room page, you’ll see that you can manage your Room by un- joining it, inviting others, seeing who is currently a member, and going into manage mode, which lets you alter the Room settings, manage members (remove them or make them an administrator), add or edit services just like you did for your own feeds, and change the picture if you want to. One Master marketer, Ed Dale, is wild about this feature. Imagine your Room as a “gathering” of a team or mastermind group for your business. If you have a bright idea, just pop it onto a message to the feed in that Room. All other members of the Room will get a chance to comment. You can keep up a somewhat “instant” message conversation with your whole group. On the other hand, say you need a pep talk, drop a line in your Room in FriendFeed and before you know it, and there is help. The idea is beginning to spread that FriendFeed Rooms could just possibly replace mailing lists. Something to think about. Maybe you will be one of the ones that give this idea a real try? Why not use your Twitter influence to get your followers onto FriendFeed, and then begin a mastermind Room on, say “how to use social marketing most effectively” or whatever topic your followers tune into you for. Rooms have the potential to actually be the feature which sets FriendFeed apart from all the rest of the social networking sites. Everyone on FriendFeed Here is where you could go nuts reading everyone else’s blurbs. Basically, these are everyone’s feeds that are on FriendFeed – similar to looking at the Everyone page on Twitter – it’s the community as a whole. The Many Views of FriendFeed Since you are on your Home page, your name is in bold. In this case it’s mine – John Taylor: 21
  • Mastering FriendFeed Below that you can see that it’s in Standard view. This simply means that you’ll see a list of your friends’ feeds and yours that are on that particular list. This list is updated by hitting the refresh button or by changing screens. Of course you can view one of your more specific lists this way, too. So you can look at your Family list in Standard view to see what’s been going on up until now on that list. Do the same with your other lists. But if you want to get on with your day, yet have an eye on your list without keeping FriendFeed site open, choose Real-time. You can pause the updates if you want to, also. If you click Open mini window, it will open up a smaller window, which you can keep open, if you want. This is a big plus for social Internet marketers. You can monitor Launch Day for a particular item - either yours or someone else’s. You can keep up with chatter in Twitter - live! Later you’ll learn how you can re-share your tweets back to Twitter. Now, if you’re busy, this could get distracting, so you would minimize it unless you have a conversation going as sort of an instant message. The Best of Day feature is one of my favorites. You can choose this if you want to read only the blurbs or entries that were commented on or “liked.” Obviously, FriendFeed could get as busy and noisy as Twitter and you don’t have time to read every bit that streams out there. So, FriendFeed has designed this part to feature only messages, photos, and videos that other friends liked. It’s sort of a popularity contest and marketers will like that these are indexed in Google! You can sort by best of the day, week, or month. So, here is a way to get some exposure to you, your sites, your ideas and likes and dislikes. Friends on FriendFeed Next to your name on the top right is Friends. Click on that and you will see something like this: 22
  • Mastering FriendFeed We are looking at the Subscriptions tab at the moment. And here is a visual list of all the people you have subscribed to – all the voices that you are following (this screen shot above is only a small portion of my list). Of course, some are on your Family list, some on your Professional list or hobby or whatever. But here is where you can see them all and here is where you can add to your friends list, too. So if you just want to read Michael Fortin’s FriendFeed, just click on his name and you get to see just his FriendFeed page. Same with all the others. This is nice when you’re following someone in particular. You could do this to keep up with a particular person’s thoughts, likes, dislikes, plans, and anything he or she is doing on the social sites. Some marketers use this to spy on the competition. Hint: Keep your eyes peeled for ideas here. Lots of chatter goes on all the time but very often you will pick up on tidbits worth paying attention to. You can plan Joint Ventures and decide who you want to promote in the coming months. If you click on View subscription modifications, you will just see all the people that you have both subscribed to and those you have unsubscribed from. In the event you unsubscribed to someone, here you can re-subscribe if you’re having regrets. Imaginary Friend Okay, I know this sounds a bit out there but here is a cool little trick that marketers can use to their advantage. You can track any public RSS, URL or blog that may not otherwise have a FriendFeed. Suppose, like me, that you are a Perez Hilton celebrity gossip addict. You want to keep tabs on everything he posts, but he’s not on FriendFeed yet! 23
  • Mastering FriendFeed You can create an imaginary friend and track him anyway! To do this, go to the site you want to follow. I went to PerezHilton.com and found the RSS selections. I picked the RSS I wanted and right click/copied the link location. Now head back over to FriendFeed, click on Friends in the upper right. Now click the Imaginary tab. It will ask you to create a name – I chose Perez Hilton. Hit create. You will be presented with this: I click the Blog RSS button and get this: 24
  • Mastering FriendFeed Here is where you paste the RSS URL from before. Then click Import Blog. Now you should see “PerezHilton” entries on your main home page. Or you can go to your Friends > Subscription page and click on it to see just the Perez Hilton entries. Click on it and you can see the RSS for this blog. Nifty trick if you want to spy on someone who isn’t yet set up on FriendFeed. Of course you could apply this is all sorts of ways. It’s an affiliate marketer’s heaven - closely follow trends in electronics, games, toys, exercise equipment - whatever!! Create an imaginary friend called “Apple updates,” Mattel toys, Gameboy or iPhone and stream in just their news and announcement of newest models and innovations. Get the jump on the market for the newest models. FriendFeed is new and not everyone is jumping on – yet. So you can create an imaginary friend, called what you want and plunk in their RSS or blog address. Follow anyone who has a public website even if they’re not networking. Let’s face it, some people just want to blog away on their blog and not join in at Twitter or anywhere else, but their stuff is worth following. Here you can follow them in one nice neat package. You can Click the Subscribed to Me tab to see if the people you’re following are tuning into your feed, and vice versa. The Recommended tab shows you people you might be interested in subscribing to. This is where FriendFeed trumps Twitter. Unlike Twitter (unless you use another add-on tool), you can’t sort your followings. On FriendFeed, even if I have 3 or 30 thousand subscriptions, I can still filter it into my own personal list preferences. 25
  • Mastering FriendFeed The Stats tab in your Friends activity is just a nifty bit of info for the “died in the wool” number cruncher. See pie charts of your and your friends’ feeds and where the traffic is coming from. On the same screen you can also see who finds you most interesting based on how often they comment on or like your entries. The Find+Invite tab under your friend activity is where you get to look for people who are already part of FriendFeed by just entering their name in the search box. You can also import your address book, if it’s supported - like Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail. This way you can see if any of your friends are already on FriendFeed (by matching the email addresses). Like other social networks, FriendFeed has a feature that allows you to invite your friends to join. Enter the email addresses. Then send out an email to them by personalizing the short message in the box. This applies to the main friend’s lists, not the Rooms, which have their own membership system. Finally, if you didn’t do it earlier, now is where you can aggregate your Facebook list into FriendFeed. At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see this: Once you click the link, you will need to Allow it to connect to your Facebook account. As it says in the image above, whenever one of your Facebook friends starts using FriendFeed, it will auto-subscribe you to their FriendFeed feed. Adding Friends While Surfing the World Wide Web 26
  • Mastering FriendFeed You are now an official FriendFeeder and you’re surfing the ‘net and run across a fellow FriendFeeder. They have a widget like this one to the right (although there are smaller more compact widgets): Say you like Steve Rubel’s blog, so you decide to add him to your FriendFeed – click View my feed – Subscribe to me. If you choose View my feed or Subscribe to me, you will be taken to Steve’s FriendFeed feed. Glance over it and then if you want to, click the Subscribe button in the upper right corner. You’ll be asked which friends list to include him in and even get a chance to make a new friend’s list if necessary. 27
  • Mastering FriendFeed Chapter 4: How to Interact on FriendFeed Interacting on social networking sites means you don’t run in like a bull in a China shop. You ease in, get to know the etiquette, and stay in line with the rules. You don’t spam, you listen as well as talk, and you make it a friendly, two-way conversation with your customers, prospects, and friends in general. Sharing in FriendFeed There are several ways you can contribute in this particular web 2.0 setting. As mentioned before, the first way is to just use the Twitter-like feature, Post: Message, to enter a message on your feed. Another way to add to your feed is when you’re surfing the ‘net and you come across a site of particular interest that you just have to share with FriendFeed followers. While on the site, you can click the FriendFeed bookmarklet (instructions in a moment), which will give you this box on the upper right: This box already comes with the title filled in – although you can change it. Then all you have to do is insert your message and click Share on my FriendFeed. 28
  • Mastering FriendFeed To get the FriendFeed bookmarklet button installed on your browser bar, go here: http:// friendfeed.com/share/bookmarklet - it’s listed under FriendFeed tools (upper right corner of your Home Page). All you do is drag the bookmarklet into your toolbar. Then when you go to a page you want to share, click it and it opens the box. To add an image, just click it and it will be included in your post. See what I did with my sample entry: It automatically posts to my FriendFeed with a link, an image, and a comment I made about it. When on a web page and you want to quote something, simply highlight the text you want to quote and click the Share in FriendFeed button. A box will come down with the page title and the text you quoted already filled in. Then click Share on my FriendFeed. While you’re there - or on a separate occasion - you can do the same with photos. When visiting a site and you want to share a photo, click Share in FriendFeed. When the box comes down, hover your mouse over the image and click it to add to your entry. Then click Share on my FriendFeed. Commenting in FriendFeed Here is the part of FriendFeed that sets it apart from Twitter. While in Twitter you can comment on something, it isn’t in a thread or connected to the item that’s being commented on. In FriendFeed, it you want to comment, click Comment and leave your thoughts. If it happens that the entry you’re commenting on is a tweet, you can send it back as a reply to Twitter (see tick box at the bottom of the comment box). 29
  • Mastering FriendFeed If you click that, it will open up a new pop up box that asks for your Twitter username and password because this would be a reply to the original poster. See the example below: Then others can read the original blurb and leave a comment on it and/or other comments in the thread. In this way, there is a sort of a conversation progressing. These longer “conversations” attract attention of the search engines as well as human eyes. It makes FriendFeed a living stream of voices all having a chance to talk to one another. Smart marketers will see this and take note. While you may be able to share your thoughts and products, treat this opportunity as you would any relationship – with respect. Don’t think for a minute that this is a place to “blast” your list with endless upsells and nothing of value. Like an Entry Like is similar to voting in StumbleUpon. It displays a smiley face under the item “liked” as well as keeping totals of others who “liked” it. Like and Comment have a bearing on several factors. We’ve talked about at least two places where these influence Best of Day feature in the Views mode. In Best of Day, only items that were liked or commented on are seen. 30
  • Mastering FriendFeed This is nice if you’re just “scanning” what was what in FriendFeed. Like And Comments also are used in the next section, More. By clicking More you get the choice to Link to this entry or Reshare this entry (if it’s a Twitter post then you also see the option View in Twitter). By linking to this entry, you can grab the URL of the entry and place it on any of your sites which would be handy if you are trying to make a point in a blog article or making a passing comment on a forum. Reshare the entry lets you post it to your feed. It’s kind of like a Retweet in the world of Twitter. A box opens up and it auto-fills some of it in for you and you have the chance to place a comment in it. Hide an Entry Using Hide is nice if you’re seeing a lot of repetitive entries like when there’s a lot of commenting on a single item and it just keeps bumping to the top of your feed. You can choose to Hide the entry by clicking hide. If I click Hide on an entry, this is what I’ll see: You can choose to undo the Hide. Or if you click “hide other items like this one,” you’ll see this options box: This is a very useful tool. First notice the RSS icon. If the entry was a Twitter, Flickr or whatever entry, they would have their own bookmarklet. So, anything in the box applies to that particular feed. 31
  • Mastering FriendFeed If you want to, you can hide all of Alex’s RSS entries (sorry Alex, just using you as an example here). Still, you know that Alex posts some really thoughtful stuff sometimes and you don’t want to miss that. Then you can leave the first button unchecked. This way you get to view any entries of his that are liked or commented on. But if you don’t want to read any of his bog posts, tick the box below that and then you won’t see anymore of Alex’s posts till you decide to unhide them – regardless of how many people are raving about it online. Also, if for some reason you don’t want to view any blogs today, or any other day, you can select “hide everyone’s entries.” This can be applied to any entry, any feed - so you can basically just read Twitter or just view Google Reader if that tickles your fancy. As you can see, Hide can be used to filter out some of the noise of the ‘net. And after all is said and done, and you still want to read the hidden entries, you can choose undo and all is back to normal. Note: As you can see in the same box, down in the lower right corner, there is a FAQ on “How does hiding work?” So if for some reason you get stuck or are scared to make a move for fear of losing something vital, FriendFeed has made the information just a click away. Related entries While we are looking at Alex’s entry, note the” arrow that says, “6 related entries from Alex Sysoef:” If you click on it, you will see that FriendFeed has already started to filter out much of the “noise” of tons of related entries by one person by lumping all these entries right under the main one like this one: They do some of the work for you – giving you a head start in your social marketing organization. You can further dig your heels in and stop whatever chatter you want to ignore or silence for awhile. 32
  • Mastering FriendFeed Chapter 5: Advanced FriendFeed User Tips & Tricks Time to look at the finer points in FriendFeed. To do this we will look at the Search function and more particularly – Advanced search. Advanced Search Function At the top of the FriendFeed page you see something like this: Say I want to find out what everybody is saying about – me – I’m nosey like that. So, this search will go out into that particular feed (in this case, Everyone) and bring back all the latest bits and pieces about John Taylor. Step 1: Type in the word you’re searching for at the top of your Home Page, as shown above. Step 2: Click the Advanced Search link here: I want to choose “any” sites, shared by “everyone.” Then click Advanced Search. Some of the results I see will be these: 33
  • Mastering FriendFeed I also have the option of only seeing entries from a certain sites, such as blogs. So what I do is choose Blog from the list of Shared from the site and I’ll see who’s Blogging about me, like this: I’m using me as an example here, but you can also put in keywords of product names, niche keywords, and more – whatever you want to know about. Remember that you can send back messages through the Message feature right below the entry. Just remember to “tick” the box to send the reply back to Twitter. Since FriendFeed searches public RSS and other subscriptions, we can take a look at what consumers are saying about a certain product launch or marketer. Call it research, call it vanity – I spy to make sure I’m not doing something wrong – consider it my survey of sorts. Use the search function to follow anybody or anything that is on the social sites. Be careful with the search feature. If you’re a fan of Terry Dean’s, you will also see results come back for Dean Terry. This is simple to fix because, like Google and other search engines, you can put quotation “ “ marks around the name or topic to get the exact term searched. So put “Terry Dean” in and then you can read what everyone is saying about him. Using Your Email to Post to FriendFeed Using Mail2FF Perhaps you’re in your email account and you want to post a quick message to your FriendFeed feed (I hate saying feed twice, but it’s technically correct). This is a fairly simple matter. FriendFeed now has Mail2FF, a nifty feature that Gary Burdo came up with. To use Mail2FF, Go to Tools and then the Mail2FF link here: http://friendfeed.com/share/mail. You will see instructions on posting an item to your feed using email. It tells you what address to send it to, ending in mail2ff.com (the previous portion of the address will be specific according to your nickname and a code). The subject of your email should be the title of your post. The body will be a comment to your post and you can even include an attachment photo if you want! You even have the ability to share items with a specific room on FriendFeed, and they give you a specific email address for those messages, too. 34
  • Mastering FriendFeed Advanced Room Search Looking for a room to join in FriendFeed? Perhaps a group that likes fishing? Here’s how you find it. In Google, type: topic :site:FriendFeed.com/rooms/ …where your “topic” is what you are looking for - in this case, fishing. So it would look like this in the search box: fishing :site:FriendFeed.com/rooms/ Here is a tiny portion of the results that pop up: Think about how you could mine some niches this way! Some quiet “listening” in on conversations could lead to the next best-selling info product. Accessing Your FriendFeed If you go to http://friendfeed.com/about/tools you’ll see the current list of tools they’ve devised for you. We’ve already covered widgets and sharing, but what about how you access your information on FriendFeed? 35
  • Mastering FriendFeed You have options, including: • IM Notification where you get instant messages whenever you have new FriendFeed activity • Feed Reader where you read your FriendFeed activity in any reader of your choosing • Facebook Application where you read it in Facebook and share your activity with other Facebookers • iGoogle where you use a gadget to track your FriendFeed activity • Email (which is what I personally use) where they email you daily or weekly with a summary of your FriendFeed activity • IPhone for those true social marketing Addicts who have to know on the go whenever any new FriendFeed activity is posted You can be sure that FriendFeed will continue to grow and change. As the Internet changes, so will the future of the social interaction on the ‘net. FriendFeed is just touching the tip of the iceberg. Internet Marketing will use platforms like FriendFeed to help them gain momentum with their social networking tasks. You have in your hands – the Social Marketer’s Secret Weapon to help you take on the future of Internet Marketing. Will you put it to good use or let the information sit stagnant on your hard drive until you “have time” sometime in the future? Some of the busiest marketers are already on FriendFeed because they know what many don’t – that this little tool is a time saver, a name brander, and a business builder all wrapped into one. No more excuses – come find me and let’s get you addicted! John http://friendfeed.com/johntaylor 36
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