Archive for June, 2010

Last week a “new kid” on the block showed up at Biznik.  Sean Earley who it turns out is originally from Ohio, most recently lived in Seattle, before moving to Germany.  And he is savvy and friendly and enthusiastic about his newfound community at Biznik, from the way he is posting on forums and commenting. All in the spirit of getting to know his global neighbors.

Love it when people are friendly and curious and smart!

Funny/ironic that he lived in Seattle but only discovered Biznik once in Germany? Is that True Sean?  And now we connect as the fellow Social Media enthusiasts and writers we are? I surrender…and will just be GLAD we connected thanks to the Wonderful World Wide Web and a homegrown Social Network that has members worldwide.

And about this post that I “reprint” (thanks Sean!): I really appreciate the succinct clarity of the suggested logic (from the book Groundswell) for using Social Media as the tool it is. Being strategic and on purpose while being also authentic are core values I live out EVERY TIME I write.

Except for those early morning pages of stream of consciousness that clear the cobwebs from my head…

I second, enthusiastically,  the suggested rationale and process that Sean spotlights. In fact I am curious as to how y’all make the best and the most of time spent within Social Networks? Or do you even begin?

Curious minds await your nickel on this evolving “reality” and be mindful reader, that Social Media Marketing is now part of the mix. Yes, you can put your head in the sand a while longer if you must, but really is that wise?

As it makes sense for your business–Integrate.Integrate. Integrate. In time may you feel about Web 2.0 (aka Social Media Marketing) similarly as you did about email auto responders; which is they are here to stay and just like learning to ride that first bike, there is a learning curve but once confident, we ride the bike, not the other way around.

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Before you make the decision to use any social media platform as a marketing tool, you need to evaluate it first and ask yourself how it best serves a specific purpose, otherwise there is the potential to just waste a lot of valuable time, energy and resources without gauging the results.

How, why and even if you use it can and will directly effect the bottom line.

So, before you go tearing into Twitter, or any social platform for that matter, first ask yourself a few, basic, key questions, make some decisions based on these questions and set some goals.

Basically, “how will this tool or platform help me?”

In order to do so, I suggest following the P.O.S.T acronym (originally put out by Forrester)

POST stands for: People, Objectives, Strategy, Technology.

1. People: Who are the people you want to be targeting and how do you identify them? Who is your demographic and where can you find them?

Is Twitter the best place to find them? Is Facebook? Is linkedIn? Or maybe SprouterBuzz, Etsy, Ning, Xbiz, Foursquare? Or…

Are there other platforms that might be better? Maybe there is a forum based on your niche that would be much more effective instead? Maybe a group? Does this demographic even use social networks?

2. Objectives: What are your objectives and what are you hoping to achieve?

Are you broadcasting a message or researching and gathering information? Are you trying to build a mailing list, or get more traffic to your website? Is it for education, communication, relationship building, or customer service? Is it a tool to generating leads, or to build upon existing leads?

Do you want to use it for input or output? Or both?

3. Strategy: What is your strategy? What is the ultimate goal of your efforts? How will you be using this tool to achieve your objectives?

How much time can you afford to spend with these tools in order to positively effect your ROI? How much time is too much time? Will you be in charge of this process or will you outsource?

4. Technology: Based on your plans, which platform is best suited to serve up these goals?

Once you decide on a platform, do you have a good understanding of how to use it? Are you comfortable using it or do you need training? Do you need tools or additional software?

So to summarize, Social media can be a powerful marketing tool, but it can also be an incredible time suck. Following this basic process and asking yourself some very important key questions first will ultimately define success or failure.

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And after all that is it now time push that publish button? Here is to fun and productive blogging be it micro or otherwise.

About this guest blogger: Sean Earley is a professional designer, online marketing and social media consultant, recently transplanted and currently living in Weisbaden, Germany and thanks to Biznik, For more by Sean visit his blog and comment if you are compelled! I for one appreciate his

I do so love a good all nighter!

Reminds me of that time I had to complete a final paper for a college literature course and I got stuck on page five of 20.

I had drafted the first five pages with ease. Weeks before,  I had typed up those first five inspired pages on my trusty Brother (back before computers made it a breeze to edit and rework copy).

So imagine a college Senior, eager to complete this 20 page project and get on with my Life! Sitting at the dining room table (or rather the card table that served as such) I starred hard at the bottom half of the fifth page…blank…uninspired. Simply stuck on where to go from the point I had left off.

My roommate Dan did his best to coax and coach me to relax, let the ideas flow, and just type something but I was a deer in the headlights. But I was determined to sit at that card table, fingers on the keys, and referencing my outline and notes, I prayed for guidance. None came.

So Dan got radical on me. How you ask?

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A Note from Deborah:

I believe, I have many things in common with Krysta Gibson, who these days publishes the New Spirit Journal and consults on publishing and businesss and more. And as a happy subscriber to her newsletter, I was struck by this recent “essay” and offering. And thank you Krysta for granting me the go ahead to post to my blog; the place I evangelize about Authentic Writing and My Personal Marketing Manifesto (yes, I have one!)

First and foremost I love Effective Communication that furthers Human Relations. I love reading, writing, speaking, writing, communicating ideas in what ever “language” is your natural form of expression. And I champion people in business and in life confidently expressing themselves be it for their business or their relationships, in the name of having a Purposeful Life Experience, while of this Earth.

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