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Don’t Put Status Widgets on Your Blog Until You’re Seasoned

twitter widgetWhen you’re a blogger and you read about the wonders of social media, your first instinct as a business person (who loves free stuff) is to jump on board and follow instructions that look like this: 1. go to, 2. register a name, 3. say “this is my first tweet,” 4. put a twitter widget in your sidebar so your readers can see the wonder of how cool you are because you’re on twitter. Obviously, there are a lot of steps missed ranging from “upload a profile picture” to “tweet more than once.”

I’m seeing more and more on real estate blogs these empty widgets as pictured here, showing that someone quickly picked a twitter name a hundred days ago and then sat by the phone waiting for the resulting sale.

It’s time to take an inventory of your widgets, real estate people… if there is something in your sidebar that makes you look like you don’t follow through, your clients might think the same of you. If there is something like a Facebook fan page that shows you have two fans (you and your mom), remove it until it is more fleshed out.

When people don’t take the time to fill out a complete profile, upload a profile picture and actually use a tech service, but they take the time to embed a widget, it can make consumers believe you lack follow through in all things, not just a half-a**ed twitter widget.

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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.



  1. Benjamin Bach

    March 31, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    that picture is all too common!

  2. Matt Stigliano

    March 31, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    Lani – Great advice. If I see one more blank avatar I might scream! With all of the talk about social media and how “you’ve got to be involved with this,” I fear there might be too little emphasis on understanding the tools of social media and just diving in and sitting “by the phone waiting for the resulting sale.”

    Now of course, there is a bit of experimentation and trial and error that goes with tools of this nature and I actually dove in with little regard to the outcome, plan, or consequences – so maybe I’m not exactly the best example. Lucky for me, it was all still new enough that I was able to settle in a bit. Now I think it’s best to settle in quietly while no one is looking and then start to announce yourself to the world.

  3. Eric Hempler

    March 31, 2010 at 2:53 pm

    I think this applies to all social media sites people use. For example, I’ve tried contacting people on Linkedin or Plaxo only to finally receive a response weeks later. If someone is going to use ANY of these sites they should have the setting set up to be notified, not finally log in when you realize, “hey, I haven’t been on there in a while”.

    • Benn Rosales

      March 31, 2010 at 3:49 pm

      Eric, sorry! I’ve all but abandoned Plaxo but I also didn’t go sticking a widget on my website! so happy birthday everyones bday it’s been on Plaxo, I’ll see ya on FB where it’s also your bday! ha

  4. Ricardo Bueno

    April 1, 2010 at 7:21 am

    100% Agreed!

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