The Top 10 Things I Learned/Found In 2011

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by Steve Holt on January 7, 2012

Seems like everyone is doing articles about what to look forward to in 2012, including me, so I decided to talk for just a few minutes about the best things I learned/found in 2011. I hope that you can find some goodies in this list that you didn’t know about, so that you can (of course) make 2012 the year that makes a difference for you! Here is my list, in no particular order.

1. www.printfriendly.com

Have you ever tried to print or create a PDF of a webpage article that you wanted to keep, but it prints all sorts of crap on the page and it looks awful when it prints? Look no further. Just try this. You’ll thank me. And don’t forget to install the Bookmarklet.

2. New Facebook Insights

The new Page Insights that Facebook rolled out in 2011 is the most comprehensive deep dive into your Facebook fans than anything previously. It is simply awesome. But figuring out what it all means and how to interpret the data can be daunting. No more. Facebook created a wonderful 20-min interactive tutorial on how to use it. Read my article (linked above) to see all the goodies you’ll find.

3. Spotify

I love listening to music. I have Pandora on all my devices, I own several music players, and I have my music files stored on all my devices as well. Spotify went big in 2011 and now I can listen to just about any song by any artist that I want, even new music, for free. If you aren’t a Spotify user, you need to be. Like now.

4. Square

If you sell anything and want to accept credit cards, Square is your answer. Use your cellphone to swipe the card and instantly get your money for a flat % fee. So simple a caveman could do it. Seriously. No sign up fees. No hassle. Easy as pie. Have you tried it yet??

5. Google+

I know, you need to play around with another social network like you need a hole in the head, but Google+ is the real deal. It isn’t mainstream yet like Facebook, but it will be at some point, so get on board now and figure it out. Google owns the secret sauce to being found on the internet and Google owns Google+. That should be enough reason right there. And here are some awesome Google+ resources: here, here, and here.

6. Gary Vaynerchuk

Maybe you know him and maybe you don’t, but you need to listen to Gary. He doesn’t know me from Adam, but I recommend that you listen to anything he has to say and buy his books. I am inspired by his passion, his cojones, and his honesty. Make sure you watch his keynote speech to Inc 500.

7. Trust Agents

I have talked about this before and it makes my top 10 list because it was the best book I read in 2011, and I read alot in 2011. I actually read this book the first time Dec. 2010, but I read it again in 2011 because it was that good, so it makes the list. If you want to built trust on the internet, no matter what you do, then read this book. I do everything differently in my business now because I read this book in 2011. Read it.

8. Carbonite.com

For years I have done the ‘backup-to-external-HDs-then-cry-when-it-fails’ dance. I have lost more files than I care to remember, so I am tired of having to worry with external harddrives to save me. So I looked at all the backup solutions out there in 2011. For one flat fee per year I get unlimited backup, and it does it automatically behind the scenes every time I create or change a file. It couldn’t be simpler. I absolutely love Carbonite.com. You should too.

9. Social Media Examiner

I have no idea how I missed this website for so long, but I found it in 2011. I follow some great websites on the internet on a daily basis, and Socialmediaexaminer.com has been added to my daily list of destinations. If you want to learn anything about social media, then put this one on your list. There are a bunch of good ones out there, but this one is a must read.

10. Mette Norgaard

2011 was the year that changed my life. I realized in Feb. 2011 what I wanted to do with my life. At the time I was 42 years old. Took me long enough. I wrote about the experience here and without spending too much time on it here, let me just say that if you are toiling away doing something that you don’t love, then you need to make a change. And I hope that 2012 can be for you what 2011 was for me. It is liberating and life-changing. I wish that for you.

So there’s my list. I would love to hear about yours, so hit the comment box below if you want.

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