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Named to "Writer's Digest 101 Best Websites," this #SharingwithWriters blog is a way to connect with my readers and fellow writers, a way to give the teaching genes that populate my DNA free rein. Please feel free to add to the conversation using the very tiny "comment" link. For those interested in editing and grammar, go to http://thefrugaleditor.blogspot.com.

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Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Social Media is all about making connections. Why make connections? To get the word out. That's simple. Finding and connecting with the people who might want to hear that word is more complicated.
The RecoverySI strategy is based on two things: Quality information and quality engagement. Engagement- the art of making connections- that's what Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and all the other Social Media tools make possible. Different tools are good for different things. Because of the "quality information" part of our strategy, we were thrilled when a brand-new tool emerged a few months ago: https://www.rebelmouse.com/" target="_blank">The Rebel Mouse

Why We Made Friends With a Mouse

The Mouse is what's called an "aggregation tool" in Social Media jargon. It doesn't require you to create a whole lot of new stuff (although it makes it easy for you to do so right there in the user interface, if you want to.) Rather, it takes the stuff you're already doing, on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest or Instagram, and brings it all together on one jazzy feed with its own URL and the name of your choice on it. Then you can:

  • Pick out exactly where you want it to grab content from- one or all of your existing Social Media tools

  • Refine exactly which content to grab using filters (keywords, hashtags, profile IDs, etc.)

  • Tell it which stuff to put up there right away and which to store in draft form for you to review

  • Add content from other providers and share administration tasks with other page managers

  • Customize the look and branding of your page

  • Add your page's feed to a website or blog

And it makes all those things easy to do- simple admin menus, drag & drop arrangement, click & pick options, etc.
So what did we do with the Mouse? Here's a few examples:
We created a lovely "https://www.rebelmouse.com/RecoverySI/" target="_blank">RecoverySI
" Rebel Mouse page for our own feed of Twitter tweets and Facebook posts. We got the good folks at http://rebelmouseapp.com/" target="_blank">Rebel Launch to make the lovely custom background for us using our branding ('Cause we're not that geeky, really. And no, it wasn't pricey.)When we redesigned our website, we dropped a feed from that page right into our http://treatmentandrecoverysystems.com/" target="_blank">Home Page
under the "Connect with RecoverySI" headline, highlighting our Social Media involvement and giving people lots of fresh, new quality information to click on. (It was really easy!)We created special topic-based Rebel Mouse pages for our audiences: "https://www.rebelmouse.com/RecoveryFriendlyWeb/" target="_blank">RecoveryFriendlyWeb
" for people recovering from addiction and their families; "https://www.rebelmouse.com/AddictionRecoveryPros/" target="_blank">AddictionRecoveryPros" for clinicians and other recovery professionals, and "https://www.rebelmouse.com/RunningRehabPrograms/" target="_blank">RunningRehabPrograms" for program managers. We added feeds from friends on Twitter and Facebook who consistently post good content for those audiences. That promotes good engagement and adds more quality information to our mix. With Rebel Mouse's tools, they take us only a few minutes a day to curate.We added the feeds from our topic pages to our website as well, on audience "focus pages" http://treatmentandrecoverysystems.com/audience/people-in-recovery/" target="_blank">like this
, and in our side bar links lists and resource menus.The Mouse works for us because it lets us:

  • Add visual appeal to our website (aggregated posts all include images, headlines, video links, and other attractive visuals)

  • "Amplify" content across social media platforms: We publish a new article, our site automatically puts it on Facebook, Facebook hands it to Twitter, the Mouse grabs it from Twitter, we get 4 exposures right out of the gate.

  • Keep audiences engaged and interested with plenty of new and interesting things to click on in an attractive layout and format.

  • Engage friends and colleagues as content providers- building good will, promoting our brand, and expanding what we call the "Recovery Friendly Web," (and, not incidentally, our audience.)

So if this sounds like a commercial for the Mouse, let me reassure you that I don't work for them. The service is free. It's worth checking out.-----
Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of This Is the Place; Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered; Tracings, a chapbook of poetry; and how to books for writers including the award-winning second edition of, The Frugal Book Promoter: How to get nearly free publicity on your own or by partnering with your publisher; The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success; and Great Little Last Minute Editing Tips for Writers . The Great First Impression Book Proposal is her newest booklet for writers. She has three FRUGAL books for retailers including A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques. Some of her other blogs are TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com, a blog where authors can recycle their favorite reviews. She also blogs at all things editing, grammar, formatting and more at The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor

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