Posts Tagged 'geoff livingston'

The Enterprise Conundrum-Adapt, Adopt or Do Nothing?

Recently I had the pleasure to do 2 things that I enjoyed tremendously: One, I got to participate in a podcast with Geoff Livingston and Toby Bloomberg on Social Media and the Enterprise and Two, I got to speak to a bunch of relative neophytes with regards to Social Media. What struck me about this group, was how little they knew and how little really had an impact on their day to day jobs. Social media either did not figure into their day to day activities or was restricted so much-what was the point?

What struck me about Toby and Geoff? Just how smart they are and how they both see the big picture of social here. Now back to the other group.

For them, social media activities consisted of basically going on to Facebook and either doing a status update or reading others. Social media from a channel usage standpoint within their organizations had nothing really to do with marketing activities, recruiting and vetting of candidates in HR, addressing the needs of customers or monitoring the activities of competitors.

Social Media within the walls of their companies was viewed as something “we know about” but we don’t know enough about to figure out how it can positively affect our company, let alone how it can be used in a positive way on an individual basis to move the dial for our company.”

This dove tailed nicely into my podcast with Toby and Geoff.

Where does the Enterprise start?

Does your organization adapt by just becoming social? Or does the enterprise merely adopt certain social media practices into certain elements or departments within the company?

Am I splitting hairs here? Is this just semantics? Or are adaption and adoption just so large and time consuming that it’s just easier to say-”No social media in the organization, do your Facebooking at home!” Is there a win for stakeholders who do not necessarily move the needle?

Is that flawed myopic thinking on the part of the enterprise? Or reality?

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15 reasons to love social media

My last few posts have been about the darker side of social media and thus I wanted to clear something up.  I am the biggest champion of social media that you will find and here’s why. I may get a little spicy sometimes, but that doesn’t diminish all the “good” things about this crazy space and all that it delivers to us daily. So get a gander at these 15 reasons and when you’re done reading them add your reason to the mix.

1)  Today I have a very large network of close and semi-close contacts that I can reach out to at a moments notice. Chances are, you do too! 4 years ago, I did not have anything remotely close to this type of network.

2) If I need a really good PR firm for example, I can contact that person today and we’d know each other well enough to have a very nice conversation… without the usual vetting process. The confluence of PR and social media ain’t no coincidence.

3) If I wanted to have someone guest post on my blog and bring their incredible smartness and knowledge to the table, all I have to do is ask. Have you ever thought of asking someone? You should. There might be some really smart folks in your network and you might not even know they are following you!

4) If I have to refer a killer web design person to someone, I can do that in 5 seconds. I’m sure you know of someone too. I could come up with a list of 10 in no time.

5) Need a good email marketing company? I know one or two. In fact, I got to know someone from a pretty cool company just in the last 2 months,  Thanks network.

6) How about a good social media monitoring company? I can help you, I know a few good people there. What’s great about this one particular company? They don’t push the product, they just act like normal people should act.

7) Want to know who you need to contact in regards to social media and non-profits? Here’s one for you. Thanks to social media, these people have a chance to influence us in a way that allows us and them to make a difference in this world. We need more of that.

8. Because of social media, my network, no matter how jaded or pissed I can get sometimes, allows me to  get jaded and pissed… and they’re ok with that. They still like me in the morning. :)

9) Social media has allowed me to contribute to one book and create a rough draft for another. It’s allowed me to present at conferences, write articles in magazines and speak on the radio and create projects that connect some very dynamic people together.

10) Without social media none of us would be allowed to share the cool things we are doing 24/7/365. That doesn’t mean we always care about all of it, but you have a channel to express yourself now that you didn’t have before.

11) If I need help, all I have to do is ask. Need proof? Check out the 50 people that have hosted Hashtagsocialmedia. I asked and they said yes.

12) If I’m asked to help or assist on something, and because I generally know who is doing the asking, I don’t hesitate, thanks to social media.

13) Because of social media, when I meet someone for the first time, like a Jason Falls for example, I generally am “not meeting” them for the first time. We already know each other.

14) Because of social media, we have something to talk and write about every day.

15) If I didn’t know you before and now I do, chances are it’s because of social media.

At the end of the day, it’s still all about the relationships, the connections, and the conversations. For that, I’m thankful.

The ROI of competitive intelligence

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Rachel Happe is hosting this weeks #socialmedia session. I bring her up for a reason, which you’ll soon see. For those of you that are unaware of what #socialmedia is, I will quickly explain and then get to my point. Every Tuesday at Noon EST, Jason Breed of Neighborhood America and myself host a one hour Twitter session around the business of social media. Every week we have a different host to moderate  a session wrapped around some of the hottest social media issues revolving around business. They’re job? To challenge and question and probe participants to reach higher in their assumptions about what social media is.  The list of people that have hosted over the past few months is like a who’s who of social media practitioners. They include Jason Falls, Geoff Livingston, Toby Bloomberg, Lee Odden, Mack Collier, Danny Brown, David Alston and Beth Harte, to name a few.

Now more to my point. In one of Rachel’s recent posts on her new project blogsite The Community Roundtable, which I highly suggest you check out, she does a snap shot  view of how community managers use Twitter. She highlites  Connie Bensen, Dirk Shaw, Guy Martin, and herself. In each case, we see how each person manages to monitor the twit streams in their space. In every case, they all manage to monitor the sandbox or boxes in which they play. Why? Because it gives them more information, knowledge and data. And the best part, it’s free and for the most part passive.

Call it competitive intelligence or call it consumer intelligence, call it whatever intelligence you want; but don’t dismiss the value of this information. On the surface it may not deliver the troika that I constantly talk about when talking about hard ROI in social media- make money, save money, or increase equity but if I were going to place a value on competitive intelligence I would say, to use a few sports analogies- It’s the 6th man in basketball, the utility club in golf, the setter in volleyball, the pitcher with the rubber arm in baseball, or the slotback in football. Simply put, don’t underestimate or discount the value of competitive intelligence.

To not take advantage of competitive intelligence that is freely available is more like giving the competition a constant headstart. Or better yet, if you are a hitter in baseball, you’re starting with a strike before you even step in the batters box.

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10 Twitter Links that mattered to me this week

Below is a quick compilation of links that I received or found this week that I either tweeted or retweeted that mattered to me or to the people that are in the  Twitterspehere.

I received this this morning and it immediately raised a question for me in regards to whether Fortune 500′s should be on Facebook,  The question:

1) Can Enterprise Social Networks Gain Traction? My point being, perhaps we really need to define or look at what traction is.

2) Came across this and it seems interesting  so I’m gonna give it a test drive later Eyejot

3) For job seekers Adobe Acrobat is looking for a part time Community Manager

4) I’m wondering if this should surprise anyone? Colleges are using social media more than Fortune 500 & Inc 500 in the area of blogging…

5) There’s probably a few here I have not used but perhaps you have not used any of these 33 trend tracking tools

6) Mashable came out with a great post yesterday about 40 of the Best Twitter Brands & the People Behind Them And I thought it interesting to see how some use or view the power of Twitter. Who do you think uses it most effectively?

7) Valeria Maltoni and Geoff Livingston did a duel post on Top 25 Ways to Stop Wigging Out and I have to tell you, I might have to tape it on the monitor or on the fridge, because to be honest right now, there is so much happening in all of our lives, I get the sense that we all are scramblin’ for scraps sometime.

8) I got such a tremendous Twitter RT reception for the following Tweet and post titled “Create the change“:

My advice to you is to not wait on Barack Obama 4 change. Create the change yourself, in your own lives

9) How timely and “in the mix” are your tweets? Check out Twitemperature I know, it’s one of those hit and run type of Twitter apps. But still.

10) This is a must think piece here How Twitter Can be Corrosive to Online Marketing

I think I’m going to start doing this on a regular basis, simply because there is so much info that I miss and that you miss, maybe this will help. Send me one that is worth sharing that I might have missed. Educate me, please.

Social Media could be the savior for SMB’s

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6 days into 2009 and I’m sure we all have our goals set or we’re busy finalizing what we are going to do. I make these lists and I write down thoughts at a furious pace and still, in the back of my mind, I’m constantly wondering what everyone is collectively thinking right now. By everyone, I’m really referring to small and medium sized business owners. The economy sucks and business is wayy down..

They have to be wondering where the business is going to come from or how they are going to get business utilizing their existing forms of advertising, sales, and marketing. The problem is,  how effective do those continue to be? Were they ever? Do they know they are not working? Do they utilize metrics or do they fly by the seat of their pants to measure their effectiveness? Do they understand that there is more for less out there right now? Or is it less for less? Their heads have to be swimming. I know mine is.

Initially I would have said No,  SMB’s are not aware of their advertising, sales and marketing effectiveness, but in that sense I was referring to “as it pertains to social media”, as in how effective could all these initiatves be if they were using social media, and that is completely true. SMB’s do not know much about how social media might be able to turn the tide.The power. The effectiveness. The impact.

But they do know plenty about what is and what isn’t working in regards to their  sales and marketing initiatives. I love what Christian Maurer says about this:

In today’s business climate, sales organizations think that they have to increase their activities to counteract the increased reluctance of customers to buy. These increased activities will however not necessarily be rewarded by higher revenue.One might end up trying to get more juice from an already squeezed out lemon

So enter Social Media. The darling of the last few years. We go from product centric to customer centric. But how do you articulate that social media could be just what the doctor ordered? Well I could wax eloquent on that question for awhile but I’d like to refer you to Kyle Lacy’s 4 part series on social media marketing for the small business as a primer. It’s a wonderful piece and more so, it exposed me to a great blog for small business called The Marketing Spot. I highly recommend you add it to your list in 2009.

Ok so back to you Mr. and Mrs. SMB how do you go about learning whether Social Media is the cure for what is ailing your business? And how do you do it quickly because you don’t have time to ramp something like this up. WHAT DO YOU DO FIRST?

-You could try and learn about “It” on your own but you need to know what “it” is. This might help.

-But then after you figure out what it is, you then need to know who you can trust or what to look for in a social media consultant, because you don’t have time to be doing this, right?

-Once you figured out what to look for, then you need to decide “who to look for”

-So now that you have “that” person or agency selected, now you have to have a strategy and they have to share that with you, so that you know exactly what they are trying to do for you and your business.

-A blueprint of how that person works is a good thing to have, it lets you know exactly how they work and it is a key component that we talk about all the time and that’s transparency in social media. Amber Naslund does a great job of discussing her “blueprint” in this post.

-Now that we have the strategy and the blueprint, it’s time to implement. Don’t worry though, your accomplished social media strategist knows just what to do.

OK, so you know what it is, you know what to look for, you know who they are, you know what they’ll do and you know how they’ll do it. But the last thing we have to do is we still have to measure what they’ve done.

-We talk all the time about how to measure social media but here’s a simple framework for measuring it’s effectiveness.

With that in mind, I end with this; As long as you know upfront what you are trying to accomplish and you adhere somewhat to these steps above, you may just have figured out how to incorporate social media into your SMB marketing  plan! But don’t stop there and don’t rely solely on your social media expert/strategist. Take the time to learn as much as you can as you go, so that you can understand the sea change that is happening within the worlds of PR, marketing, advertising and communication.

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Happiness, Heroes and Relationships: 3 Lessons

Interesting day unfolding before me today. I’m going to provide you 3 lessons in relationship marketing. One of the first blog posts I read this morning was written over at Jason Falls’s social media explorerer. The post was about how social media can open the door for happiness marketing. I’m down with that, since scare tactics seem to be de rigueur these days. My take away points from this are as follows:

Social media offers a way to build your business by making people happier, rather than the other way ‘round.

People who feel like they’ve been heard are happier than people who don’t.

If you refer to yesterdays blog post, you will see that one of my deadly “sins” for a social media marketer are the pissing off of a customer. Any time we can make a customer happy, shouldn’t you take it? When you help someone or make them happy, are you not happy as well? Isn’t that, or can’t that have a viral effect? Come on people start thinking of the power that you posess to make people happy and use it.  The quality of a good relationship will make YOU happy. Lesson #1.

So after reading this article, I happen across Peter Kims’s blog post titled How to create successful hero marketing and my take away from this was to beware of gods with clay feet and to thine own self be true. Essentially Peter is saying that you either worship your heroes in social media, you want your heroes to notice you or you want to create your own hero persona.  Please read his whole post, it really raises some questions on just  what exactly is it that we want to achieve? Below is part of my response to his post.

The hero marketed to his followers and they did as they were told because their egos told them that perhaps it would open doors and allow them to get closer to the marketing guru…But once they got in, I think some might have realized that it was just another NING network.

But it serves up two good points that you have mentioned. Seth leveraged his hero worship status to drive sales via WOMM and the viral aspect of invite only status: and his followers/readers and their egos fell for the ego trap and bit.

 

The relationships that you cultivate all have a motivation. The ones that have the most impact on you and your life will be the ones that make you happy. They also will be the ones that to a certain degree are mutually satisfying. That isn’t saying that they might not involve some ego, but relationships are as much the driving force social media as any other component. i.e. the conversation  and the realtionship that springs from it,is not a monologue. Lesson #2.

Relationships. it’s what drives everything we do. Relationships are our universe. You might not agree but I will tell you that in the immortal words of John Donne, “no man is an island” especially in social media. Our relationships define us as much as any metric in social media. For example: Number of visits, Number of subscribers, number of readers, number of followers, number I’m following, blogs I’m reading, people I recommend- ALL Relationship driven.

But in some cases the relationship is not perfect. It has it’s “warts and all”. And we’re taught that we should tuff it out and eventually things will get better. Well you know what? In some cases that just isn’t true. And people end up bitter and angry and saying things they don’t mean because they stayed in the relationship entirely too long. Which leads me to Maggie fox and Geoff Livingston. They decided to not go through with their planned “merger”. They called it off a little over a month after they had announced they were teaming up. Rather than fight through it, they both had the foresight to realize that maybe it wasn’t going to work out. So the end result? A relationship intact. Some disappointment but in the end, no damage done.

In the end,  it’s all about the quality of ALL of the relationships you cultivate, and what you do with them in all of there various forms and stages. Lesson #3, Can you say Micro Interactions anyone?

 

7 sites to visit today.

 

I’m going to make it easy on you. Here are 7 things that were interesting to me and maybe you should read them in your spare time today or tomorrow.

Chris Kieff says that Seth Godin screwed up, I know it’s shocking isn’t it?

Adam Cohen thinks that there is a danger of communities becoming too diluted I think what he means is that social networks are becoming too water downed, too many choices perhaps? You decide.

Kami Huyse espouses that a course in basic human etiquette might be better than one in blogger relations, which I think we could all use since manners and etiquette have gone away quicker than you can text BRB.

Discover the real you here at Signal Patterns

Rohit Bhargava, freshly back from China, posts on an Insiders guide to marketing on Flickr, in detail.

Brian Solis with the second part of his three part series the socialization of your personal brand

Here is a rockin post by Geoff Livingston that you have to read, titled The Naturals

Chasing the dragon that is social media

Social media…….social media…. I was reading Geoff Livingston’s latest post and he had a clip on there from Tech Cocktail in which he, David Armano, Frank Gruber and Danielle Wiley opened with a “what is social media” intro.. Which got me wondering, ranting, or just pondering first a) am I too close to the subject and b) c) d) e) and f) and g) are below…

This is what I wrote to Geoff..

Let’s talk about what social media is not. In fact, what if the term social media was banned from our lexicon, what would we call it then? Is it an accurate term to use? Have we trounced on it too much? Or is it still this mystical nirvana like state that marketers, advertisers, agencies, and corporations are all chasing? Are they chasing the dragon? Are we forcing them to chase the dragon? Is it elusive? Are we making it that way? Can we dumb it down? Does it need to be?

 

It’s not really a rant per se, more of just “lots more questions” from maybe a different point of view. Some might say that social media is merely the flavor of the moment for marketers and PR people. Uhh no, it’s where we are headed, and we can choose to integrate and embolden and implement or we can get steamrolled by the ones who decided to embrace it from the get-go.  Who is the person that said “a computer in every home will never happen, it just doesn’t make sense…” Who would like to step up and say, social media is nothing but another internet phase…a fancy web based app…go ahead and throw the first stone.

 Here’s a link to the Vid


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Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.

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