Information overload or a wealth of opportunity?

The hydro group editors recently met with some personnel here at PennWell to discuss our search engine optimization (SEO) efforts. For those of you who may not know what this odd term means, it essentially involves making sure a company’s “message” comes to the attention of the billion-plus people who use the Internet.

This of course is important to us because we do our utmost every day to provide useful, practical information to the global hydroelectric power industry. Our goal is to give hydro project owners and operators the tools and data you need to do your job better and more efficiently. And while we hope we provide what our regular readers and followers need, we know there are so many people working in the hydropower industry who are not taking advantage of what we offer, perhaps because they don’t even know it exists.

At the same time, getting this SEO stuff right is no easy task. There are an overwhelming amount of websites out there, and it’s easy for any message, not matter how valuable, to get lost in the shuffle. Not to mention the fact that many people are turning to one or more of the various social media avenues -- Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter, and XING -- to get the information they seek.

As you can imagine, it gets difficult for us to know which is the best medium to use in presenting informational and educational opportunities.

It reminds me of a little bit of the various learning styles that have been identified, which include visual, logical, verbal, physical and aural.

For the sake of the argument I’m trying to make, I’ll put it a little differently: in-person (conferences, exhibitions and training programs), books (a point-in-time form of information presentation), magazines (with their monthly or bi-monthly frequency and more robust information), news websites (with daily news, information and updates), and social media (with its more instantaneous character and informal nature).

We have the in-person learning covered through our HydroVision series of conferences and exhibitions, held every year in the USA, Brazil, Russia and India. We also offer the Waterpower Hydro Basics course at HydroVision International in the USA, for those who are new to hydro and want to get up to speed quickly.

In addition, we offer some books and CDs in our bookstore.

We publish Hydro Review magazine, which covers the North American hydropower market, 10 times a year. And HRW-Hydro Review Worldwide, which speaks to the global hydroelectric industry, is published every other month.

Our website, HydroWorld.com, is updated every business day with the latest news from around the world. We also have magazine content available on the site, plus weekly webcasts, a global hydropower events calendar, a Buyers’ Guide to the companies providing products and services to the hydroelectric industry worldwide, and much more. The website truly is a valuable repository of information about hydropower.

And of course we can’t leave out social media. The hydro group has a presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. We are looking into expanding that to Google+. And we’re intrigued to learn more about XING.

But, frankly, it’s a bit overwhelming even for us.

So help us help you. Tell me, by commenting in the box below, what is your best or most favored avenue for receiving news and information related to the hydropower industry. Of the various social media platforms, which one do you turn to first? We want to focus our efforts on the “learning avenues” that give us, and you, the most bang for the buck, so to speak.

P.S. To toot our own horn just a little bit, the hydro group editors have recently been working hard to build our HydroWorld LinkedIn group. We’ve got a pretty good base of members at more than 530, but we want to continue to grow this group, so please join us and invite your connections. And please, feel free to post any topic of discussion you think would be relevant and of interest to this audience. We want to make our LinkedIn group YOUR LinkedIn group as well.

HydroVision International 2014 Keynote Speakers

Presenting the HydroVision International 2014 Keynote Speakers

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