The Timid Blogger

For someone interested in marketing, I’m appallingly bad at marketing myself. I ran into an old friend recently and was intrigued by his ability to inform me of his goings-on with CV-like precision. Meanwhile I was left stammering my usual self-deprecating nonsense before asking for more information about his fun life abroad.

My limited branding skills go further than one-on-one conversations though (in fact one-on-one is normally where I thrive). I’m incapable of marketing this blog through the usual social media channels with the majority of readers finding me the organic way: Google search.

It seems ridiculous that I can’t bask in the spoils of hard work seeing that I work pretty hard on each post. And unfortunately, the Internet is only getting smaller – while seeming infinitely larger – meaning timid bloggers like myself are  increasingly becoming marginalised on the web.

A recent Nielsen report highlighted last year’s mobile internet usage with some 89% of online browsing taking place through apps rather than the web.  Women – presumably my target audience – also spend more time logged into mobile apps than their male counterparts do. Essentially, apps are splintering  the web and preventing mobile-heavy users from finding non-Facebook highlighted stories; terrible news for a timorous writer like myself.

When blogging became mainstream five or six years ago, it was lauded as organic and unique. This view has since turned sour with street style blogs increasingly reflecting the mainstream media values they were thought to shun.

Increasingly, blogging has become more about self-branding than it has quality content. And in an age where Facebook reigns supreme, only the best brands will stand out and succeed against the company’s user data-driven model and targeted ads.

As they say, blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Just not the Internet.

iPhone Appaholic

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Originally published by Image Magazine http://www.image.ie/Life-Work/Working-it/Shortcut-Apps/

Five apps to make your (work) life easier:

Expensify: If paper isn’t your thing, then maybe you need Expensify to keep you in cheque – I mean check! This free app syncs with credit cards to track purchases in real time, pulling in electronic receipts using the iPhone camera and producing a PDF that can be emailed to your accounts department.

Mailbox: Is there anything more tedious than having to work your way through a neglected mailbox? Mailbox, a free app, allows you to cut through the junk and read only what’s important. Now, you can put off messages with a swipe and a tap. Snoozed mails return to your inbox automatically so you never lose anything either.

Asana: Got a list you need to share with your team? This app is ideal for freelance groups who need to interact within email but don’t want to sign up to a particular service. Now no one can say that they didn’t get the memo!

OneSafe: Hacking is becoming more prevalent and when you think about, your secret question on Gmail or Dropbox probably isn’t that big a secret. OneSafe allows you to save and encrypt documents as well as credit cards and web passwords using one pin or password. Not only that, the app will alert you if someone is trying to break into your personal, password-protected accounts. It costs € 5.49 but is a genuine time and hassle-saver.

HulloMail – Call us anti-social but is there anything more irritating than having to listen back to your partner/friend/sibling babbling away on voicemail? Then halfway through remembering that you’re paying for this terrible privilege? It’s time to cut the middleman and have those voice messages texted to your mobile phone where you can delete at a glance. After all, how 1990s is the whole pen-and-paper thing?