Best Practices for Your Blabs

Live video is an unwieldy animal in social media, and it’s here to stay! As you prepare to bust into your own Blabs, prepare yourself for the unexpected so your final result is a total keeper.

Best Practice #1: Schedule Your Blab

If you build it, they will come… at least, they might if you let them know about it! Schedule your Blab for a future date and time so you can blast the link out to your audiences and set yourself up for a great, interactive audience.

If you need help setting up your Blab successfully, visit our blog post to be a boss for your next Blab.

Best Practice #2: Prepare Your Questions

Unless your Blab is of the just-hanging-out variety, winging it is not a winning strategy. Prepare at least five questions for a Blab that is scheduled to be 30 minutes long, or eight questions for an hour-long Blab.

Also, when you pre-schedule your Blab, you can populate your questions into the Blab ahead of time! Just hop into the Blab, type each question into the right-hand sidebar (using the leading “/q ” so it is designated as a question), and your left-hand sidebar will be ready to roll with your questions. Plus your viewers can up-vote their favorite questions when they join at the start.

Best Practice #3: Set the Ground Rules

If you plan to be on Blab frequently, set yourself up for consistency and credibility by establishing your ground rules. For instance, you may want to establish a rating for your Blabs (i.e. G, PG, R, or anything goes).

Blabjacker: one who blows into a Blab, repeatedly tries to call in, & is a general nuisance. Click To Tweet

While you could spend eight minutes in your Blab going over your policy, instead create a landing page on your website (or, if you don’t have a website, do a Blab featuring just you where you go through them) and share the link in each Blab you conduct. Your audience will have somewhere to refer for your Blab rules and be set up for successful interaction with you. If you need some ideas for how to set up your Blab Ground Rules, visit ours for guidance.

Best Practice #4: Moderate Like a Master

Blab is 100% public and live, so you’ll naturally have viewers blow through to watch for a bit. (Can you believe they didn’t read your Blab Ground Rules?) You will at some point experience the joy of having an unknown visitor try to call-in to an open seat to join the discussion.

Block an errant Blab user with the block icon | Really Social Blog
While we would never dream of blocking Robyn, she has the red alert icon which allows her to be blocked from a Blab.

If you’re flying solo as Host, you’re already handling your questions for your Guest, engaging in the right sidebar with viewers and by sharing links, posting questions from the left sidebar, and if you remember all of that, you’re still sharing out the Blab on social media. A persistent Blabjacker (credit to one of our Blab viewers for this term!) may refuse to engage on topic yet try to call in repeatedly if you’ve left an Open Seat.

To thwart the attempts of Blabjackers, particularly while you’re recording, simple click on their Blab username, then click on the alert icon to block them from your Blab. It might seem harsh, but if they aren’t there for your Blab’s purpose, won’t read your Ground Rules, and can’t take a strong hint, they can grow in another Blab garden.

Got your own Best Practices for Blab? Share them below!

Chrome Cures the Chaos of SMM

I used to play the circular game of signing in to the social profiles of a brand I managed and resigning myself to delaying my own personal profile management until later.

Sure, I could sign in to my own accounts on a different browser, but working outside of your favorite browser is like walking around in borrowed clothes. You may even like the look, but you don’t fill those threads like your own.

So how do you manage more than one profile from one browser*?

Two words: Chrome Users.

Here’s the logic: you’ll probably need a Google+ page solely for SEO value, right? You might as well use that need to maximize on how Chrome can align an entire brand’s online presence with a single Chrome User profile.

Here’s how to get started:

  1. Open the Chrome browser.
  2. When asked to sign in, create a Gmail account for the brand. If the brand you manage will have a Google+ personal profile as a figurehead, consider using that person’s name in the email (rachel.moore@gmail.com, for example).
  3. Use the new Gmail account to create Google+ Personal Page as well as a Google+ Business Page for the brand.
  4. Using this same signed-in browser, login to all of the online platforms and sites you need for this brand (Twitter, Facebook, Hootsuite, Pinterest, Iconosquare, etc.).
  5. Click on the triple-stacked lines at the top right corner of the Chrome browser, click Settings, then go to “on Startup.” Click on the Set Pages link to tell Chrome to always open the full set of tabs you’ll use to manage the brand online.

Wait a second – what about my personal brand?

  1. Go to Chrome Settings (see #5 above).
  2. Scroll down and in the People section, click Add Person to create a unique user in Chrome.
  3. This is where you can sign in to this new User with your own Gmail account to use for all of your own settings, bookmarks, passwords, and social identities.

The beauty of this set up is you can have two or more Chrome windows open at one time with a unique user account in each. Did you just use the brand Chrome user to post something to Instagram for the brand you manage? Hop on over to your own Chrome user window to like or repost it as yourself.

Using multiple Chrome users works even more beautifully if you have more than one monitor, but one wonderful thing at a time! If you have questions or additional suggestions, I’d love to hear them below!

*Yeah, I’m pushing Chrome use here. Firefox has a Sync feature which could probably work in similar fashion, but… oh, Google.