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Archive for July, 2013

13 Google Tools You Didn’t Know Existed

Google Tools

These are few tools provided by Google which you will love to use:

1. Google Ngram Viewer
Google’s Ngram Viewer lets you search keywords in millions of books over the span of half a millennium, a useful tool for finding trends over time. For power users, the Ngram Viewer also has advanced options, such as searching for particular keywords as specific parts of speech or combining keywords. Just in case you ever wanted to see how big cocaine was in Victorian times, now you can.

2. Google Correlate
A part of Google Trends, Google Correlate allows you to look at search trends over time. For example, input “soup” and you’ll see a clear increase in searches during the winter months. The more fascinating part of Google Correlate is the Search by Drawing function. Draw a fun graph and Correlate will give you search keywords that best match your graph creation.

3. Google Trends
Look at trends in hot searches with Google Trends. Browse by date, or look at top searches in different categories with the new Top Charts function. Finally, with the Explore function, input a search term and see how it trended over time and location. You can also now view popular searches in a colorful fullscreen format.

4. Google Think Insights
Home to an abundance of resources, Google Think Insights is a useful tool for entrepreneurs and industry professionals. There are case studies, new findings and tips on how to grow your business, as well as showcases of exemplary projects. Finally, there are also tools for maximizing your site analytics and ad campaigns. A particularly useful collection is how to “Make Your Website Work Across Different Platforms.”

5. Google Public Data Explorer
Search through databases from around the world, including the World Bank, OECD, Eurostat and the U.S. Census Bureau. After you find what you want, filter through categories to make graphs with the axes you want. Google’s Public Data Explorer then displays the data in a line graph, bar graph, scatterplot or on a map.

6. Full Value of Mobile
A useful calculator for businesses, Google’s Full Value of Mobile will calculate just how much having a mobile site is worth. The tool will help you analyze how customers interact with the various aspects of your business, from mobile sites to calls to cross-device ability.

7. Get Your Business Online
Get Your Business Online is Google’s initiative to get more local businesses on the web, in an effort to boost the local economy as well as help small businesses grow. The initiative also encourages people to get other businesses online, with an end goal of reaching every local business in America. There are also listings for events and lessons. The free service also includes hosting for one year.

8. Schemer
Schemer is like a combination to-do list and social event planning app. Connect via your Google+ account, enter your preferences, and Schemer will offer some things to do around your area. A great tool for travelers who want to make the most out of a visit, as well as for locals who want to find something to do on an otherwise boring day. You can also collaborate with the friends in your Google+ Circles and see who wants to do the same things as you.

9. Google Fonts
Google Fonts offers open source web fonts for all to use privately or commercially. As of now, there are 629 font families available. Filter fonts by thickness, slant, width and script.

10. Google Developers
Google Developers houses a plethora of resources that developers can use, tools such as internationalizing different websites and live presentations of tutorials. Developers can also join groups in a local area for meetups and collaboration.

11. Dart
Dart is a programming language developed by Google in hopes of eventually replacing JavaScript as the language of modern web apps. Dart was released in 2011 and is still in its development stages. With a goal to make coding and collaboration simpler, Dart was designed to be simple enough that even beginning developers could learn from it.

12. Google Keep
Launched earlier this year, Google Keep app connects to your Google Drive. Sync-able across all your devices, Google Keep allows you to keep notes, voice memos, pictures and checklists in order. The easy-to-use interface is a simple app for those looking to do basic note-keeping on-the-go.

13. Google Sky
A part of Google Earth, Google Sky allows you to explore space and star systems. In collaboration with NASA, using images from the Hubble Telescope, Google Sky is one of three subsidiaries of Google Earth, the others being Google Mars and Google Moon.



To prevent your Facebook Page from getting shut down, don’t break these 5 rules

Facebook Promotion Guidelines

Don’t Dos on Facebook for promotion

The Rule: A cover photo cannot contain more than 20 percent text.
Where you can find it: Facebook Page Guidelines – Article III section – B

The Facebook cover photo is one of the places I most often see policy violations. Facebook recently changed their rules about text and cover photos: calls to action are now allowed but overall the image can only contain 20 percent text. I’ve noticed that many businesses aren’t aware of the new guidelines and I’ve also noticed that lots of businesses are breaking the 20 percent text rule. If you need some help thinking of ways to leverage these new rules, check out this article. There are plenty of great tools out there that will help you determine whether your cover photo is within the 20 percent text rule, but this one is my favorite.

The Rule: Promotions on Facebook must be administered within Apps on, either on a Canvas Page or a Page App.
Where you can find it: Facebook Page Guidelines – Article III- section E- clause i

In layman’s terms this rule means that you need to use a third-party application in order to run a promotion on Facebook. Many businesses on Facebook like to ignore this rule by running promotions that consist of posting a photo and saying “share this to be entered to win” or “comment on this post for a chance to win.”

If you’re planning to run a promotion on Facebook, do it the right way. Third-party platforms exist to make it easier for businesses to have custom Facebook apps. Most third-party software providers already comply with the majority of Facebook’s guidelines so when you’re building an app you don’t need to worry about the little details. This article from Jon Loomer provides a comprehensive list of Facebook application platforms available.

The Rule: You must not use Facebook features or functionality as a promotions registration or entry
Where it can be found: Facebook Page Guidelines – Article III – section E- clause iv

This rule piggybacks on the last rule by stating that a business cannot use Facebook’s features – such as Liking, commenting, sharing, or uploading a photo — as a means of automatic entry into a contest. Basically, you can’t say “Do this and you are entered!” You still need to have the user submit an entry and agree to some basic terms. You can of course suggest that the user share something, upload a pic or leave a comment, but it can’t be a requirement.

One thing that you are allowed to do is require that users Like your Page or Check in to your Place in order to enter. The Like or Check-in is the exception to the rule, but again, it can’t automatically enter anyone into your promotion. The Like or Check-in simply allows them to continue to the entry form.

If you want to require people to Like your Page in order to participate, try creating a custom app that is fan-gated. When users see your app but haven’t Liked your Page yet, the app should encourage them to do so to proceed to the entry form. After they enter, feel free to ask them to share your contest with their friends (but don’t force them to).

The Rule: You must not notify winners through Facebook
Where it can be found: Facebook Page Guidelines – Article III – section E- clause v

It seems natural that when you’re running a Facebook contest, you pick a winner and then announce the winner’s name on Facebook. The problem is, according to Facebook’s guidelines, you’re not supposed to use Facebook as the initial means of contacting a winner. This includes Facebook messages, chat or posts on profiles, Timelines or Pages.

The best way to notify a winner is via email. If you’ve used a third party application to run your contest you’ve most likely collected some data, including email addresses, from your entrants. As long as you’ve notified your winner outside of Facebook, you can then announce the winner to your audience on your Timeline or in your app.

The Rule: If you collect information from users, you will: obtain their consent, make it clear you (and not Facebook) are the one collecting their information, and post a privacy policy explaining what information you collect and how you will use it.
Where it can be found: Statement of Rights and Responsibilities – Article 5 – Section 7

My company, ShortStack, is a third-party application and our users ask us just about every day why our app requests access to Facebook profiles. If you’re a business and you’re using a Facebook app to collect data from your users, it’s your responsibility to tell your users what information you’re collecting and exactly how that information will be used. If you’re transparent and honest with your users about what you plan on doing with their information you’re likely to receive more engagement on your data collection app.

The (Unspoken) Rule: Don’t break local, state, national or international laws Some states/regions have their own rules and guidelines for a business that is giving away any prize, including prizes won via Facebook contests. Check with your region’s business agencies to ensure that you’re abiding by local, state and international laws.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the rules and guidelines on Facebook for Pages, but these are the rules I see businesses break most often. Although it can be time consuming and tedious to make sure your Facebook Page and apps comply with all of Facebook’s rules and guidelines, it’s worth it to stay up to date with Facebook’s policies.


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