Maximize Your Potential by Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

You will often hear that those with some of the most publicized successes arrived at those accomplishments by simply out-working those around them. Jerry Rice, the all-time greatest wide receiver in NFL history, famously chased horses and caught bricks as a child to develop speed and coordination, while developing a 365-day training schedule throughout his pro career. Notable successful executives such as Tim Cook are known for their routinely early starts to their work days, while others like Marc Cuban are known for forfeiting vacation days for the first seven years of his career.

Health and work-life balance risks aside, I would never contradict that a strong work ethic, focus, commitment, and having an intense voraciousness for success will lead you down a path in the right direction. Luckily, achieving success and reaching your maximum output starts with a much simpler step, and that is in finding what I like to call The Stretch Zone.

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Why You Need to be on Social Media

If you are a private citizen with no business concern at all, then there is no great need for you to be on social media. The main reason that many private citizens are on it is because it is fun. You get to communicate with your friends and complete strangers. It is also loaded with brand new content every day, including content that your friends and family have posted. It allows people to see family photographs that were uploaded by distant relatives. It also allows you to share things between friends that will make them laugh. If however you are running a website, blog, business, or all three, then it is vitally important that you are on social media.

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2014: Actions over Results

On the first work day of 2014, there is certainly no shortage of resolution lists floating around the Internet. If you’re anything like me, you probably spent some time on Tuesday night thinking about what you wanted to accomplish this year, or what you were going to change. Personally, I decided to be more assertive in all aspects of my life. Maybe you decided to be a better communicator with friends and family, or to multiply this year’s revenue by 3.
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Can Facebook People-Centric Model Really Scale?


In 2008, Mark Zuckerberg laid out his theory about people sharing content on Facebook. “I would expect that next year, people will share twice as much information as they share this year, and [the] next year, they will be sharing twice as much as they did the year before,” he said. 

Guillaume Decugis‘s insight:

This article reminded me of my own post on Business Insider predicting that the Facebook people-centric model will see its limits. Two years and one IPO down the road, we’re exactly there: with 1,500 potential stories to show to an average user news feed every time they visit, Facebook has a tough time determining what’s really important.

Perhaps more importantly, Facebook lost its raison d’etre Continue reading

How to Turn Your Brand Into a Media


This is a talk that I gave at LeWeb 2013 and at the Cristal Festival in December.

While we’ve now seen the power of brand content, it remains very hard for even the largest brands to implement successfully. In addition, it doesn’t solve the question of how to engage an audience on a daily basis. To do so, brands have to become media.

But how? Continue reading

Are current events the new keywords?

The “trending topics” section on Twitter has always been a fascinating example of virality to me. Sometimes, you get the weirdest combination of stuff (Pandora, women, and Christmas?), and it makes me wonder “how on Earth did that make it into the trending topics?” But, because of the power of trends on social media, I’ve begun to wonder how current events can impact content strategy. For instance, if I were to produce and publish a brilliant infographic and publish it on the same day that Kanye throws another Twitter tantrum — how does that affect the engagement on my post? How much traffic do I lose because the social web has its collective eyes turned toward Chipotle? It’s definitely an interesting (and possibly depressing) subject to ponder.

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Why Content Curation is the Ultimate Compliment to the Creator

Before today, imitation was the greatest form of flattery. If your idea was good enough to be copied, then you were golden. But now, with the state of the web in our lives, this balance is shifting. While “copying” still does exist online, the concept of “copying” is now simply a way to bump your own Google ranking by farming someone else’s content. This, is not flattering. Even if correctly cited, 100% republished work is simply cheating to get ahead. Curation, on the other hand — the meaningful selection, enrichment, and sharing of existing media — combines imitation and creation. Curators have to create a new perspective or idea on top of the existing media which supports the content in the original.

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The Thanks Economy: Companies & People Giving Back to their Communities

In less than 24 hours, households around America will be setting tables, gathering ‘round, feasting on turkey, and talking about what they’re thankful for. While these are typical family activities during the month of November, it’s easy to forget how important it is to spend time with the people around us and appreciate what we have during the rest of the year.

For businesses, remembering to give back to your community is equally difficult. With the constant focus on earning revenue, brand marketing, social media and content strategy, and simply clearing out those emails, who even has the time to think about giving? Scoop.it would – quite literally – not exist without our amazing community of curators sharing smart content across the web, and similarly, most businesses would be nothing without their consumers.

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5 ways to engage your audience through authentic communication

Communications from branded properties, celebrities, or anyone with a “following” can often come of as false, contrived, and sometimes insensitive, even if they have the best intentions. This article was inspired by a recent email campaign I received, where the “reply” email address was “no-reply@redacted.com.” This gave me pause. I don’t know why this particular email campaign set me off, but I was genuinely irritated that they would really prevent me from interacting with their brand. Who wants to be told they actively can’t reach out to someone who is proactively talking to them. That’s basically a brand saying “you don’t matter and we don’t want to talk to you.”

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Are knowledge-sharing institutions showing too much bias?

Our knowledge sharing institutions of today are beginning to “humanize,” to focus more of their resources on creating readable, shareable media than on reporting cold, hard facts, simply to stay relevant and on top of peoples’ online radars. To make facts more palatable, many medias will interpret ideas with respect to their own unique brand Point-of-View, one only has to consider CNN versus FOX news here in the USA. But, do institutions who stand and a major knowledge source for world readers have a responsibility to keep bias out of their findings? Is “fact omission” or “spin” an appropriate way to interact with vital facts? Or, as I seem to see it, has major marketing technique got its claws too far into our knowledge sharing institutions and our own lives (because, really, we as readers are the ones who perpetuate this problem). Continue reading