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Category Archives: Events

Now that selfies are in, can we start ignoring them?

If I see one more selfie on a national awards show, I may gag. It’s getting rather tiresome, seeing grown-ups climb aboard a bandwagon that usually has reserved seating for self-obsessed teenagers.

Sure the made-up word entered the OED last year — but so did jorts and fauxhawk in 2012. It also trumped the word ‘schmeat“, the new word for fake meat. In case you needed to click on the above link, you are probably like me, shaking your head in despair.

But to get back to selfies, yesterday on the Country Music Awards, there was a selfie moment, and we wondered whatever happened to human ingenuity. Didn’t Ellen make it clear that she owned that brightly lit space that celebs inhabit?

Just to cement the fact that we are in that moment in time when this awful word is rushing to meet us, there’s that annoying song. Obnoxious, albeit a wonderful parody of selfie culture. It’s title: “Let Me Get a Selfie.”

To add to this there’s the pres of the United States fawning over a selfie, as if it was the best thing that happened to image management –with a touch of product placement. I understand the man is desperately going after all the Likes and re-tweets he can get.

It’s time for people over 21 to calmly put away their phones and start real conversations.

 

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In a job search – again?

What if this is not the last career move you’ll ever make? Job searching in a world of blogs and social networks has been a topic I’ve spoken about –and still wrestle with — considering the fact that resumes are not exactly passe.

So this topic ‘What is this isn’t my last job search?” is very relevant. It’s the theme of a networking event next week in Phoenix, hosted by the Southwest Job Network (SJN).

The Speaker: Jason Alba, author of  “I’m on LinkedIn – Now What???” and the person behind JibberJobber.com (a software app)

  • When:  Wednesday 9th February
  • Where: Gateway Community College. 108 N. 40 Street, Phoenix, AZ 85034
  • Cost: Free.  SJN exists on donations; the suggested donation is just $5 –which is tax deductible.
  • Registration and more details: At this link
 
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Posted by on February 2, 2011 in Arizona, Events, LinkedIn, Social Media

 

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‘Now Revolution’ book tour begins soon!

Why do I feel like the word Revolution is all over the place? Maybe it’s that ‘ear worm’ of the Beatles signature tune from my radio show that’s in my head.

Jason Baer and Amber Naslund’s upcoming book, The Now Revolution, has the word in its title, though it’s the word NOW that jumps out. As they lay it out, they say that this book isn’t about how to “do” social media, but about a broader need to rejigger the organization on the ‘now’ factors. The chapters have those broad goals, such as how to ‘engineer a New Bedrock;’ ‘Organize Your Armies;’ ‘Answer the New Telephone;’ ‘Build a Fire Extinguisher’ etc.

You could find a free chapter if you go here.

On February 1, the book will be on shelves across North America.

Jay and Amber have a post-launch speaking tour for The NOW Revolution. If you, or an organization you know of, likes to have either of them to present the “7 shifts” to make business faster, smarter, and more social, they are open to talking.

Here’s the deal. Just commit to buying 200 books (ideally before release) and we’ll work with you on a date between February and June where we can visit your region and do a presentation, book signing, tweetup, game of Twister, etc.

Email them at info@nowrevolutionbook.com.

But wait! There’s More! If you’re into the Quick Response Codes, use your phone and take a picture of this image (right) using the Microsoft Tag software, for bonus content.

It’s a pretty cool way to promote a book using the very principles it talks about.

 

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2010 in Book Reviews, Events

 

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Are you more social today than you were two years ago?

Questions like this come to my mind as I walk into any office, and see people slouched over their iPhones, BBs and laptops. I get a passing nod and try to not butt into what’s apparently some very exciting Twitter chat.

Or when you watch teenagers in a room chatting while multi-tasking, infatuated by each other’s screens.

I advice people on how best to balance digital and analog, so I come across these complaints and concerns a lot. Which is why I am anxious to see how Social Media Day, today pans out.

We are meeting  up -um, tweeting up — in Tempe this evening, at Madcap Theater.

I highly recommend this contrarian idea about today, if only to help you think about what the social part of social media is really about.

 

Social Media Meetup in Tempe!

Once again, Fred Von Graf is pulling together a great event with his outfit Social Media Arizona (SMAZ).

It’s the Tempe Social Media Day Meetup at MADCAP Theater from 5-7 p.m.

Here is what it’s all about:

You get to take the MADCAP stage and deliver “a verbal, in-person Tweet about why you love your favorite social media tool and talk about something great that happened because you used it.”

There’s live music, food and prizes.

Details here:

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2010 in Arizona, Events, Social Media

 

Plenty of “non-experts” – tons of social media expertise

A funny thing happened in the lobby of MADCAP Theater, Monday.

SMAZ_2010_VPRBIt had nothing to do with these two familiar faces. Most of the 400 + attendees at the Social Media for Business event –a..k.a SMAZ –about all things digital, indulged in one of the oldest communication tools, business cards.

I loved how, despite seeing a Twitter handle on the last statutory slide of every preso, this tiny cardboard rectangle still works. It probably illustrates how social practices like this will not go away despite the attention we give to trackbacks, Tweetdeck or Posterous.

PanelIn between working the floors wearing that funny hat, I sat in on some great sessions. The panel on Building Brand Evangelists with Social Media, moderated by Kevin Gawthrope (@gawthrok), was very enlightening.

Then there was our very own Linda Vandrede moderating Social Media 101 a panel that included Amanda Vega, Chris Hewitt, Scott Andrew and Sheila Kloefkorn. Talk about heavyweights! If you’d been to last year’s SMAZ, you would have notices how the audience had changed, even at a 101 level. One of the sticky topics that came up was about outsourcing content. There were two schools of thought here, but both maintained that content creators have to be transparent and committed. Blogola and astroturfing won’t cut it.

As I mentioned earlier, the tone was set by Sitewire president, Greg (“I am not a social media expert”) Chapman but having said that, there was plenty to glean from. Especially in the hallways!

My takeaways (updated):

  • Be the message, don’t just post the message!
  • Don’t treat Facebook like the Yellow Pages.
  • Listen first, tweet, post later. Use Social Media as a listening post.
  • Be cognizant of the ‘channel agnostic customer.’
  • Google handles hyphens better than underscores, so be watchful when you write headlines, tags.
  • “Social media is free” is a huge misconception. There’s a human resource cost attached to it.
  • Social media is not a strategy – it is what you embed into your Comms strategy, marketing strategy, PR strategy.
  • Google’s new search engine, Caffeine, will knock your socks off.
  • Think less about the platform, more about the content.
  • Content isn’t king. Optimized content is king!
  • Start with small things. If your boss or client wants to start tweeting, facebooking, start with small goals before the big-hairy-audacious ones
  • There’s a difference between a News Feed and a Live Feed on Facebook.
  • Train others freely. Give away secrets. The rising tide lifts all boats.
  • Differentiate between Goals and Tactics. People mix these up.
  • Just like the way they confuse Strategies and Tactics, I suppose.

If you read other takes on SMAZ , you’ll see that there’s a lot of tech stuff to wrap your head around. But for all the talk about ‘matchbacks’ and Seesmic, Tweetie and Flowtown, I came away with three things:

  • “Social Media is an ingredient, not an entre.” – Jason Baer
  • “Hang out where your customers hang out” – Sheila Kloefkorn

And …

  • Bring a lot of business cards, next time, dammit


Cross-posted from ValleyPRBlog

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2010 in Arizona, Events, Marketing, Social Media

 

“Stop treating Facebook like the Yellow Pages”

Evo Terra was firing rounds of ‘measurement’.

Jason Baer was his usual self –provocative, helpful, and making some terrific observations of where we are heading.

As with last year’s Social Media for Business Conference, (see post here) now better known as SMAZ, this year’s conference had some outstanding panels.

The event kicked off with Sitewire president, Greg Chapman making  statement that was more of less repeated at every session: “I am not a social media expert.”

Followed by a “however…”

So in the company of these non-experts, I learned some amazing things, and confirmed a lot of the approaches I’ve been taking. Here are the ones that I liked:

  • Don’t treat Facebook like the Yellow Pages.
  • Listen first, tweet, post later. Use Social Media as a listening post.
  • Be cognizant of the ‘channel agnostic customer.’
  • Google handles hyphens better than underscores, so be watchful when you write headlines, tags.
  • “Social media is free” is a huge misconception. There’s a human resource cost attached to it. Social media is not a strategy – it is what you embed into your Comms strategy, marketing strategy, PR strategy.
  • Google’s new search engine, Caffeine, will knock your socks off. Even if you’re in flip-flops :-)
  • Content isn’t king. Optimized content is king!
  • Start with small things. If your boss or client wants to start tweeting, facebooking, start with small goals before the big-hairy-audacious ones
  • There’s a difference between a News Feed and a Life Feed on Facebook.
  • Train others freely. Give away secrets. The rising tide lifts all boats.
  • Differentiate between Goals and Tactics. people mix these up all the time.
  • Just like the way they confuse Strategies and Tactics, I suppose.

SMAZ also turns out to be a great way to connect with the people we only meet virtually here in the Phoenix area (I met many of our readers from ValleyPRBlog), whether no matter where we are on the analog-to-digital scale.

And lest we forget the person behind the curtain who makes this happen, I want to tip my hat to Fred VonGraf.

 

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Quotes for the week ending 14 Nov, 2009

“Yes, it’s important to change the light bulbs and windows, but it’s even more important to change the laws and the policies,”

Al Gore, in Phoenix, keynoting the GreenBuild conference

“When put together, we have the tools and technologies to solve three or four climate crises … But the missing element is political will.”

Al Gore in Cambridge Mass, at a book signing of Our Choice.

“Who wouldn’t buy a pair of socks for the Mount Olympus of commercial exposure?

Mitch Albom, on American Eagle’s promotion that lets a customer enjoy the his or her 15 seconds of fame on a billboard in Times Square, — the ‘famous airspace that once featured a giant winking penguin…’

“And the fun won’t end Nov. 27 …”

Story in the Associated Press about how shoppers would  the  checking social media sites for Black Friday specials

“Facebook is for brands – the careful ones”

Headline of a great post by Neville Hobson, commenting on research about using Facebook, about the need to not act like marketers!

“It’s a hole in your heart, just like 9/11.”

Spc. Chris Monge, on the tribute to 13 soldiers killed at Fort Hood, Texas

 

Social media for business conf. brings out heavyweights

Al Maag, Chief communications officer at Avnet opens the Social Media AZ conference with a keynote that has everyone’s head nodding.

He talks of how he brought a technology company to consider using .social media to communicate, by asking the wrong questions, but being persistent in asking the right people. Turns out it was an integral part of Avnet’s brand strategy. His main approach to the C-Suite : He told then, look, “the train has left the station,” and we are going this route, because guess what, the competition is going to be on this train, anyway.

Some highlights of his presentation:

  • The Avnet’s Facebook program began in Europe. It’s Avnet’s way of sharing knowledge and enhancing talent.
  • The Avnet blog was not even claled a blog when they began
  • If you don’t have guts and self-esteem, don’t be in this job. (“I’ve been called Tweeterdumb” and “blog boy”)
  • Lose the battles …win the war
  • Just bring in a consultant. (Shel Holtz plug here)
  • LinkedIn is the new Rolodex, videos are vital, Twitter is not for everyone

AvnetonDemand.com was created with no budget

Al Maag’s blog is primarily to communicate with the media; he talks of things such as Woodstock (guitars) and

The line up of speakers is like a who’s who in new media, PR, interactive.

Mike Corak and Chis Sietsem on crafting a social media plan were good. Some of this is what we know, but it reassures me to see others think this way. Especially that Measurement, that much maligned word, is not just about traffic but measuring (knowing) engagement, sentiment..

Next session Elizabeth Hannan, says welcome to the hot room (a passing reference to the air conditioning here). It’s all about building community.

 

Quotes for the week, ending 25 July, 2009

“Combine the ‘show don’t tell’ and ‘report with your senses’ rules to gather details that will paint pictures for your readers.”

Rosland Gammon at BusinessJournalism.org, on reporting details to paint a picture

“When it comes to influencing brand perception and purchase decisions… social networking… has a long way to go.”

Stephanie Molnar, CEO of WorkPlace Media, commenting on a study of social network usage in the workplace.

“When most people say, “prioritize,” I think they really mean to say, force-rank.”

43 Folders, on Mud Rooms, Red Letters and Real Priorities

“They have no friends left.”

US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, commenting on North Korea, during her visit to Asia

“Twitter Generates $48 Million of Media Coverage in a Month”

Abbey Klaassen, in Ad Age, in a story that details how Twitter received almost 2.73 billion impressions in the past month. TV contributed to 57% of the PR value; newspapers 37%; magazines 5%.

“Employers hire winners, someone with demonstrated success in previous positions, and someone that inspires confidence from the get-go. Wallowing in self-pity isn’t remotely attractive. Neither is desperation.”

David Mann, former dir. of corporate communications, about maintaining a positive attitude during a job search

“Twitter is not a huge page-view driver, but it does bring in new people.”

Robert Quigley, in Media Bullseye on lessons learned from using Twitter

“He had this bizarre idea that he would ad-lib the newscast without a script … it lasted two days.”

Sanford Socolow, on Walter Cronkite, at the legendary anchor’s funeral.

 
 
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