10 social sites to start your year off with

2010 is going to be an interesting year for all of us. With that being said, what year isn’t right? Well anyway, I wanted to start the first week of the new year with some things you might have missed that are worth sharing. These are sites, posts and links that will make you smarter at what you do and better at it too.

1) A September 2009 MarketingProfs survey of B2B and B2C marketers found that the marketing tactics most often used on social sites are not necessarily the best ones. Odd, but the net and social media does create somewhat of a Flash mob “follow” mentality. Find out more about what’s working for  social media marketers in this great E-marketer piece.

2) As my side Twitter project Hashtagsocialmedia.com continues to build momentum, someone asked if there were a way to follow everyone who had participated in the Tweetchat. In less than 10 minutes the answer came back with Blastfollow.

3) Jay Baer is a smart dude, but we’re smarter because of him and that’s a good thing. Not only does his blog, Convince and Convert bring value to those who read it, but he also stumbles across things that he shares with his readers that make him better and us as well. One of those things is TwitSweeper– a way to clean up and clean out the spammers that are in your Twitter account. You have to pay for it, but the cost is not obscene.

4) Staying on the Twitter theme a bit longer, I came across Refollow and thought that the features were interesting. I haven’t tried it yet but it looks to be a way to tighten up your Twitter presence and the relationships you have crafted.

5) Tamar Weinberg is a star. Look no further than her latest book, The New Community Rules-Marketing on the Social Web. However she recently cranked out a blog post titled, The Best Internet Marketing Posts of 2009 in which if you did nothing for the next 3 days and read all of the posts that she has compiled, it would make up for the last 362 days had you not read anything. BTW she mentions one of my posts. 🙂

6) Obviously my  #socialmedia Tweetchat is not the only Tweetchat out there. Surprisingly, to my knowledge, there are not that many. But how do you find them? What are the topics? When do they occur? Well, the beauty of the social web is that someone has decided to create just that type of source. A Google doc that lists all of the known Twitter chats.

7) Ike Pigott, one of the truly razor sharp folks out there in the social space, turned me onto this. YOURLS is a small set of PHP scripts that will allow you to run your own URL shortening service (a la TinyURL). You can make it private or public, you can pick custom keyword URLs, and it comes with its own API. How cool would it be to have Ma.rc as my own Bitly?

8. Face it, analytics for most of us, are very important. You might want to read this: 10 signs you don’t understand web analytics.

9) Want a really good list of people’s blogs to read and or follow? Check out this list of 30 bloggers to watch in 2010

10) Lastly I wanted to share with you something that we need more of this year in social media. I share with you this…

altruistic

Lets go with more of the first set and less of the motives that are not entirely altruistic in 2010!
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Why Social South Worked

logososo

Of all varieties of fopperies, the vanity of high birth is the greatest. True nobility is derived from virtue, not from birth. Title, indeed, may be purchased, but virtue is the only coin that makes the bargain valid.
– Robert Burton

Did you know I have a tattoo on my arm with the saying “Virtus sola nobilitas.” on it?  It’s part of my family crest. As cool as that is, what’s more important is what the words mean. Essentially, it means that virtue is the only coin that makes the bargain valid.

Why do I bring this up? Because the words mean a lot to me. They resonate. I like people who carry themselves without pretentiousness. Especially when they so easily could. I think it’s an amazing quality to possess. Humility. Especially in today’s personal branding, all about me world.

At Social South I was amongst the most unpretentious, unassuming, group of high profile social media thought leaders assembled in one place at one time. Sure, I could have gone to a half dozen “larger” more visible cities and had just as many social media thought leaders assembled. And I have. But I would have gotten the attitude thing along with the assumptive title of social media thinker, high brow, I’m better than you, thing.

There would be none of this at Social South.

Beyond a list that included the incredibly down to earth Beth Harte, the humble Mack Collier, the classy Toby Bloomberg, the social media handyman Paul Chaney who has a book coming out, the incredibly smart Jason Falls, the genuine Christina Kerley, the effusive Kellye Crane, the solid Tom Martin, the refreshing An Bui, and of course the giving Lionel and talented Richard from Dell, There were a host of “other” people that deserve recognition in their own right.

From Andrew Keen, Dave Barger, Mitch Canter, Robert French, David Griner, Tammy Hart, to Dana Lewis, Andre Natta, Phyllis Neill, Will Scott, Jeff Vreeland, Stacey Hood and of course Ike Pigott all of them brought value, humility, a sense of community and a sense of “leave the ego at the door and lets learn from each other.” You don’t get that at 95% of the conferences that you attend. That’s why Social South worked.

Of course I would be remiss to not bring up 2 more people. The first is as finest an individual that I’ve met from practically meeting for the first time. This person essentially pulled Social South together and shaped it into the conference that it was and did it in a way that it was seamless and looked effortless. Scott Schablow you rock.

Esra’a Al Shafei

What can I say. This person gave one of the most riveting non-keynote keynotes I have ever heard. And it was via Skype. The night before Scott Schablow mentioned that every time he heard her speak, it gave him goose bumps. I had no idea what he was talking about. Yet, this was no exception. Not only did it give me and everyone else goose bumps, it also reduced more than half the audience to tears and the rest were giving her a standing ovation.

Esra is the founder and Executive Director of MideastYouth.com, and what she did was she showed the crowd gathered at Social South the true power of crowdsourcing people for the cause of freedom and human rights via  social media, via video, via the internet and really any other means possible. She showed what’s possible. What is possible.

In short, it was the perfect keynote for a group of people who were so into what they were doing. People who were so genuine, that it made perfect sense for them. As I said, you don’t get that at other conferences. You hope to, but you generally don’t.  And That’s why Social South worked. Thank you #Soso!

I could go on, but it might take days to highlite everything! But one more thing before I go, here is that tattoo and remember,”Virtus sola nobilitas.” 🙂

tat

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Social Media Advocacy

Ike Pigott, whose blog I highly suggest you read and whose Twitter rants and stream of conscience thoughts I admire and respect a lot, put together a pretty cool deck called How To Be A Social Media Advocate in Conservative Corporate Cultures.  I Love the analogies and the perspective on this. You might find Ike on Twitter from time to time–> Twitter.com/ikepigott

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