Caffeinated Marketing

Gettting through all the noise, one cup at a time

New Job: Cat Herder August 31, 2009

Filed under: Unemployed — jenharris @ 11:16 am
Tags:

Picture 183Today is it.  Today is the last day before I become a SAHM (Stay At Home Mom)  Me, who would of thunk it?

This might sound cold and I should probably feel guilty about this, but I don’t want to be a SAHM! I want to work, contribute & bring home a paycheck.  I love-love-love-love our twins (Ella’s in 1st grade, so she is not with us all day) but I truly believe that they become better people because they are exposed to so many things that I can not offer them.  I am so worried that they will get sick of me and I will be so tired of being “Mom” that I won’t be a good Mom to Ella, a great wife to Greg & great Mom that I know I am, to them.  *sigh*

But here is what will happen:

I will be an awesome SAHM.  I won’t “work” while they sit in front of the TV or I just let them play around.  If I am going to be at home, they are going to get sick of me interacting and teaching them how to be better people, better artists, better athletes, better 2-yr olds…in the most loving way of course.

So, you won’t hear from me on Twitter, FaceBook, your blog etc as much during the day…but I will still be here.  I will be blogging still, but it might be about my favorite toy, kid event or new shaving product, where I will most likely write out a social media marketing plan for them.  The faucet will never be turned off!

Yes, I am still looking for that full time gig & eagerly wanting to start at the drop of a hat…but my kiddos are now first & I am thrilled to be able to spend this time with them & teach them what I know (twin-twitter accounts?) so stick with me, don’t forget me & I will see you soon.

xoxo
-jen

 

The Twitter Cess Pool August 27, 2009

Filed under: Tip of the Day,Twitter,What were they thinking? — jenharris @ 1:02 am
Tags: , ,
Nice, Green & Gooey!  Jump In!

Nice, Green & Gooey! Jump In!

I write a lot about Twitter….as do a bazillion other people, but I had an Epiphany yesterday a while back that I haven’t seen anywhere yet…so please let me know if you think I am way off base or right on.

The Twitter Cess Pool
If you have an Auto DM set up to automatically follow anyone that follows you, have you ever thought of how many people are doing the same thing to you?
My guess is that you also just “push” info and don’t engage much, which means you probably don’t search for listen to people wanting & needing your help either.  Wow, can you say “missed opportunity”?

So, if you are guilty of any of this…either keep doing what you are doing & you will soon quit (C-Ya!) because you don’t “get it” and are not seeing any results from being on this Twitter thing….
OR
you will change your ways by getting a social media strategy, engage with people & listen to the public…aka: your current & future customers.

Good luck…and get in the pool with the cool kids, there is plenty of room!

 

When CEO’s (or News Directors) “Get It”: Fox12 August 18, 2009

In November I was asked to be KTRV’s “Twitter Correspondent” during the Presidential election coverage.  Their thinking was “Why continue to have the same ‘ol stodgy old Political Science Professor every year saying the same thing, when we could interact with the public instead?”

We did a video on how to sign up for Twitter and told viewers to do so at the beginning of the special Presidential Election coverage.  We asked questions via Twitter and on air and showed those comments during the coverage.  This was groundbreaking in Boise…a very big deal.

Since then, Fox12 always has the best stories with local Tweeple as the experts.  They are the hip cats in town.

Although News Director, Kelly Cross, might not be the CEO, he is in charge & leads a crew of hip anchor Tweeple.  Here are his answers to the same questions I asked Rick Lierz about what he is doing to lead the charge with Social Media.

When did you first see the possibilities of integrating social media into Fox12?
You and Bob J. really gave me my first exposure to the notion of integrating social media into the world of local television news.  The work you did in conjunction with my local news team in covering the general election back in November really showed me the potential such an integration could have.  I also was lucky enough to have a good friend (@schlanghole), already immersed in social media, who pushed me to get more involved specifically with Twitter.  He convinced me to plow through my reluctance and become an active member of the Twitter community, and he showed me how to be involved.  He gave me a set of guidelines that really make sense, and clarify how to and how not to successfully integrate s.m. into the tangible world.

What have been the very first steps – tools, training, educating, convincing, rules etc?
Getting my coworkers involved has been interesting.  It’s been about a 50/50 split between those who readily jumped into s.m., and those who consider themselves too disconnected to try.  Those who’ve expressed an interest in being more active have gotten support, encouragement, and guidance from me.  In truth, my crew has done an excellent job of really engaging the other people out there on a personal level, as well as pumping information out when it’s timely and relevant.

Now that you have taken the first steps…if you were to do it over again, what would you do differently?
If I had it to do all over again, I’m not sure what I’d change….I admit I’d love to take back a handful of tweets that seemed o.k. when I sent them, but in hindsight made me feel embarrassed or ashamed.

What tools do you see being the most effective for your overall purpose of using SM?
From a professional standpoint, Twitter has been easily the most effective s.m. tool for us.  We have a very good balance between social and business engagements, and I feel that overall, we are way ahead of the curve in terms of local media outlets using s.m. effectively.  In sheer volume, I’m sure our competitors on Fairview are still bigger…but I would argue that we bring a far more genuine and appreciated approach to s.m. and that the local Twitterverse would agree.   From a personal standpoint, FB has been a great platform for reconnecting with old coworkers, classmates and friends…I think it’s less effective from a business/social mix standpoint.

What is your favorite tool to date?
Twitter

Who do you recommend the most to others to follow or friend?
My recommendation to others is to follow if you’re looking to engage, inform, and learn at a fast pace….and friend if you’re looking to reconnect with your past.

What are your 6 mo, and 12 month goals?
My short and long term goals right now are unclear in terms of s.m.  – except to say that I want to be ready when the s.m. world evolves and the ‘new’ Twitter emerges.  Getting on the bus early is a must.

Future…if you had unlimited resources?
If I had unlimited resources, I’d retire and let somebody else figure it all out!

 

Advertisers “Using” Social Media August 16, 2009

Wheres the Strategy?

Where's the Strategy?

Mashable reported the other day (while I was on vacation) about a study from the Association of National Advertisers came out with a study saying 66 percent of marketers are using social media. Socialmedia411 calls this BS, and I agree.

Saying you use social media because you have a Twitter account is like saying you market to baby boomers because you have pencils with your logo on them at the local all you can eat buffet.

My definition of “using social media” is that you either have a full time, professional, with more than two years experience (which is a lifetime in social media marketing) that is implementing a strategy…yes, a strategy.  Not just tactics.

You have goals, objectives, measurement tools and accountability.  You have the understanding that social media is NOT a tactic, but rather a culture that your organization has internalized, adapted and leads their industry as thought leaders.

Thanks for listening to my soapbox rant of the day.  Lesson? Have a strategy & take it seriously, this is NOT a fad.

 

When CEO’s “Get It”: Franklin Building Supply & Social Media August 7, 2009

FBSFor the past four years I have been talking to CEO’s, Presidents and high level executives about Social Media as to why they should be paying attention and start dipping their toe in the water.  Well, thanks to TwitterOprah Ashton Kutcher the last 6 months have been a blast talking to people not about why, but how soon can we get involved!  Twitter just made social media easier to understand the voice and the speed at which information can travel.

When I first met Rick Lierz , the CEO of Franklin Building Supply, he was eager to learn about Twitter & the bigger picture of Social Media.  He has learned so much in such a short amount of time and is so excited to move his company forward, it literally makes me tear up!

To my delight, more and more CEO’s are “getting it”.  To be honest, if the CEO of the company doesn’t “get it” you either enter into the SM school of dentisry you move on to another company that has the understanding that if you don’t evolve and change, you die.

I wanted to share a new blog series with you that dives into the minds of these CEO’s and what makes their Social Media plans so great.  Rick was the first person that I wanted to highlight, because there is a plan & you can see it in his eyes that he “gets it”.  I believe he has the potential to lead an industry that is traditionally non-geeky and not so “computer savvy”, yet it relies on all the components of social media: relationships, friendships and camaraderie to get a deal done.  Quite the undertaking, but I have no doubt he will succeed!

When did you first see the possibilities of integrating social media into Franklin Building Supply?
Fairly recently, actually.  I was firmly of the opinion that things like Facebook and Twitter were somehow bad, mostly a fear that they would suck time out of the productive business work day if we acknowledged its existence at work.  The economy turned down in our industry nearly three years ago, and as it went from bad to terrible, we began to experience a complete reset in old beliefs and norms.  For me, the reset included a reevaluation of how we define customers and how we communicate with the world.  I have to admit, learning about social media was the biggest surprise for me in this total reset.  It is very exciting.

What have been the very first steps – tools, training, educating, convincing, rules etc?
We are still pretty early in the process.  The first thing I did was learn about Twitter.  I’m still an analog by nature, so I took a beginner Twitter class at Consilio.  That helped me enormously with the philosophy of social media, which was the key to my understanding the role SM plays in the bigger picture.  From there I expanded my own tool set into Facebook.  I had been on LinkdIn for a while, but didn’t appreciate it before.  And You Tube became something more than an occasional diversion, as I studied how all these tools fit together.  The next step was to gather some receptive people in our company, what you can evangelists, and begin to scratch out a plan to make SM a regular part of what we do in the company.

Now that you have taken the first steps…if you were to do it over again, what would you do differently?
I would do it sooner.  We are still early enough in our evolution that I can’t yet tell what mistakes we’ve made.

What tools do you see being the most effective for your overall purpose of using SM?
Twitter, a web-based community for the public as well as one for employees, a mix of blogs and industry based educational information sprinkled among them, YouTube to share our experiences and have fun.  There are so many free resources out there to help a company communicate internally and externally.  It is an exciting time.

What is your favorite tool to date?
I am enjoying Twitter and I see its promise and relevance, but I can’t claim to be good at using it yet.  I still struggle with the concept that what I have to say isn’t very interesting, so my tweets are sporadic.  I am most excited about launching communities that are interactive, which is still in development.

Who do you recommend the most to others to follow or friend?
Find other business folks who clearly get it.  Their tweets will tell you.  If it’s all about their products or service and not about an ongoing relationship, then its just white noise.  I learned the most early on from the CEO of Zappos.  His tweets are funny, serious, entertaining, teaching, inspiring, and he does a great job of making followers feel like a part of his company.  There are some great local business folks to follow.  You just have to get on and experiment.

What are your 6 mo, and 12 month goals?
By the end of this year, I would like to have a public community and a private community launched.  Before that time, we need to complete our development of policies for social media and begin, through evangelists, to encourage use of the tools available right now by employees throughout.  Of course, a fair amount of education will be in order.  Our industry is evolving, but is still very much analog in nature.  A year from now, I would like all employees in the company to be looking to the private and public communities in the first instance for their information about the company and to be interactive in the ongoing effort to improve what we do for customers and each other.  I would also like to see the public community growing steadily in participation with people from outside the company.  Those are the big picture goals.

Future…if you had unlimited resources?
If we had unlimited resources I would hire someone to be our SM leader, to teach and train and evangelize and get the entire company to the next level of understanding and use more quickly.  Unfortunately, it may be some time in our industry before we can afford such a resource.

Thank you Rick!
-jen

 

Shop208 Beta to Release This Friday August 6, 2009

shop208For those that haven’t heard the buzz about Shop208, here is the simple low-down of why it is one of the smartest business sites to come around for a LONG time.

First, you should know that there is a limited amount of Beta users that will be able to be the first on board to give feedback & help with tweaks etc…all that good stuff that comes along with being a Beta user! Click HERE to sign up!

Why Should We Try Shop208?
Shop208 is a place for businesses to keep have an online presence with a plethora of marketing options on a platform that is built by a VERY smart, local, group.

If you don’t have a site, you need Shop208 to CREATE CONTENT! (Content is what makes you be found on the web & it lives FOREVER on the web.  The more content you provide, the better your ranking).

If you have a site, but it is a “brochure site”, you need Shop208.  Most likely, your site is just a presence where your clients can find out info that would normally be printed on a brochure.  If you have to call a “web master” to change your content, you need Shop208.

If you have a site, but have control of the backend (CMS: Content Management System) but want to get more out of your site (web analytics, form building, email marketing) all in one site for an AMAZINGLY Cheep price, you need Shop208.

What Does Shop208 Cost?
$0 – $60 a month. Amazingly cheep if you were to go with the  Premium Business package.  You could easily pay 3x this amount to get the features & quality that is expected by the end user (aka: your current & potential clients!).  You can’t afford not to do this.

What’s Your Role, Jen?
I met Nathan Barry just over a week ago & grilled him on why people should take advantage of Shop208. There have been at least 3 local developers try to make this sort of site (all of them not successful) in the past 3 years, but this is the first one that I have seen that I would support.
And since we all know content is what makes the web go around, I am here for Nathan and all Shop208 members to help them develop that web content in the form of blogs and a blog calendar of what they should write about.  This is an additional service, but one that people are finally catching onto that is extremely important, but not required.

Again, I have seen at least three similar type ideas formed the past few years, but not as well designed, thought out & released in such a smart forward thinking way. It starts out at FREE, so what do you have to loose?

 

Celebrities Want To Be “Normal” August 5, 2009

Filed under: social media,Tip of the Day,Twitter — jenharris @ 1:02 pm
Ashton & his Beautiful Wife

Ashton & his Beautiful Wife

With all the celebrities on Twitter lately communicating with fans and opening up to them (or volunteering to show their wife’s bent over tahookas in a bathing suit) I have come to the conclusion that Social Media has made celebrities “normal” and “normal” people have become the celebrities.  (btw: so so so jealous of the fabulous tahookas of Mrs.Kutcher – I will go work out now).

I personally do not follow all the “real” celebrities (ok, I do follow @Oprah, but what woman doesn’t? – btw: she is not very good at it…they need a SM strategist *ahem*) but I was researching a potential new follower and I saw that he mentioned that the REAL Ben Stiller (@RedHourBen) is now on Twitter.  He made me look.

Ben is REAL!  His URL goes to his company Red Hour Films, and a FaceBookaccount and a YouTube channel where he posted a video about him entering into social media to share his life.  But in a classic Ben Stiller, smart arsh kind of way – he draws the line.  That line is drawn when you meet his “family”.  Pretty funny stuff!  Looking forward to more videos.

I remember seeing a post when checking out Mrs. Kutcher (I was probably unemployed at the time & had to do SOMETHING in-between popping BonBons & doing my wifely duties, like dusting) where she Tweeted that she was at a certain airport in a certain wing waiting for a plane…and if you wanted to come over and chat, please do!  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  A CELEBRITY WANTING TO ENGAGE WITH NORMAL PEOPLE?  Very cool. I would love to know if anyone grabbed a cup of coffee, came over & starting chatting with her.  She wants to be normal. She wants to talk about her kids, her husband, the beautiful days in Idaho…she wants to engage.  Fantastic.  It makes us “normal” people want to reach out and discover how “normal” you really are because all the proclaiming to be “normal” on tv just doesn’t cut it…real encounters justify it.

Now on to the once “normal” people who are now celebrities.  Can Gary Vaynerchuk go anywhere (or get up on a stage) and not Crush It?  Or what about Chris Brogan getting all kids of free-bee stuff because he will blog about it?  (yes, that was a hint of jealousy).   Granted, both of these guys are in my twisted little social media circle – but it exists in all circles.

As a business owner…who are your celebrities?  You? Your chef?  Your copy machine guy?  We are human beings and are curious by other humans.  We want to know what is going on, we want to know what you are doing (“real” celebrity or not).  When we make these connections with others, we feel more compelled to reach out, help, talk to and assist those that are like us.  Reach out to your customers, be normal, be human & you too could be a “normal” celebrity.

 

 
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