“You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows that they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift.”
― Erin Morgenstern
In what seems like another life, yet only a few years ago there was a great man I knew. An always jolly and generous man who welcomed me to a community where I was bit of an outsider kid with blue hair and nothing little more than yams in my pocket. A man who inspired me to tell my story to the world and was always there when chapters got rough especially during my father’s illness.
As a pet owner I know how troubling and nervewracking losing a pet can be, luckily today I was able to help out a local pet owner be reunited with their pup all through the use of social media.
Around 4pm today I saw a photo of a well manicured stray dog come across my facebook news feed from the Pasco County Animal Services Facebook Page.
A few hours later, I luckily saw a tweet fly by on twitter that caught my eye.
At Head Of Lettuce Media, people usually notice right off the bat that we are quite like an episode of Perfect Strangers, as a right brain and a left brain working together. But it is what makes us as a team work so well, we are good at what we do in our own fields of social media.
Antony is more technical, he loves disruptive technologies, building new things to challenge current social media practices. He’s the gadget guy learning new tools to measure social media metrics.
I however am a connector, a collaborator and a fire starter. I know how to grow conversations, keep people entertained with content, how to put out fires, start engagements, connect people with other people, clients, and jobs.
Brand Advocacy: Why Your Fans Are Important to Your Brand.
How can you turn your biggest fans into your word of mouth marketing army and how will it result in driving sales to your front door? Recently I just presented at I-Strategy in San Francisco on this topic. Which to my surprise “Brand Advocacy” was the buzz in many presentations from Brian Solis to Sandy Carter from IBM. More and more companies are realizing that cultivating the relationship between consumers and their brands is important for not only driving sales but creating a online community powerhouse.
As some of you might know my whole journey into social media began accidentally with becoming a online brand advocate for Bruce’s Yams in 2008, which then turned into a community manager position. Then recently with my twitter chatter for the international car brand Audi, turned into a great brand/consumer relationship and the Audi Roadtrip and a recent VIP invite to The Rolex 24 in Daytona, not to mention the marketing agency for Audi M80 actually stopping by my presentation to answer some further questions… how freakin cool is that?
In my presentation at I-Strategy, I taught about the importance of participating in conversations, interacting with consumers and how to empower your brand’s audience. If you missed the presentation here is a few key points I touched upon….
Recently I have been immersed in the world of Human Resources and Recruiting while speaking at HR conferences such as Talent Net Live and Radical Planet on the topic of Location Based Services (LBS) after my involvement in Foursquare Day and working for the new LBS mobile app Social Mesh. This was a topic that I didn’t expect would be such an important tool for the recruiting community, in my experience in talking with recruiters and business owners alike I have learned many things on the surprisingly symbiotic relationship between talent hunting and LBS tools such as Foursquare. I use Foursquare almost daily, but never realized the power of finding employees or talented people in my community until I started working with businesses daily with Head of Lettuce Media. In most of our coaching sessions we run into many concerns from employees and company owners on how they can use LBS to boost their employees efforts and make the office more prominent in their community or industry by using these tools.
Introduction to Foursquare/LBS
“Foursquare is a location-based social networking website based on hardware for mobile devices. The service is available to users with GPS-enabled mobile devices such as smartphones. Users “check-in” at venues using a mobile website, text messaging or a device-specific application by running the application and selecting from a list of venues that the application locates nearby. Each check-in awards the user points and sometimes “badges”.” (From Wikipedia.com)
I recently came across the tweets and blog of fellow Tampa twitterer @In11Months, and needless to say I saw a lot of myself someone who’s bio read “see how I will successfully use Social Media to achieve some major life goals.”, last year I went through a bit of a quarter life crisis. I still didn’t have a job, my fiancee and I split up, I was trying to run a consulting business by myself, living somewhere I didn’t want to be in the middle of nowhere without a vehicle, taking care of my very ill father and having my family turn against me while I nearly had a breakdown was one of the roughest times in my life. I vouched then I would pick myself up and never look back… well, it’s still been a bit of a rocky road, it’s like running through mud… it’s tough, tries to pull you down but there’s always dry land on the other side. I feel like I am finally at the light at the end of the tunnel.. business is picking up, i’ve got a packed traveling schedule, a possible book on the way, taking better care of my health and I am slowly learning to build up my confidence and trust people again after a rough few months. Most of all, I am learning to love myself and feel inspired… I found some great inspiration in this recent blog post by @In11Months that really hit home, he stated his frustration with his current state, albeit comfortable is wanting much much more out of life.
“A time flexible job, making decent money doing something I love to do! Is it really that hard??? Why is this so seemingly challenging to create for myself.”
Can we really create a different life for ourselves in less than a year through social media? You bet your bippy you can… here’s what I had to respond. Read more
Last year, about this time… I was making a huge life change, ridding myself of 75 percent of my possessions and moved back from Greenville, SC. It was a time of great uncertainty, being back in my hometown of Tampa, Florida. No money, all my old friends had gone away, however as much as I thought I lost in my transition I gained something much stronger, my perspective on life was much different. If I could build a network in a small southern town, I could certainly rock it up a bit in my hometown using social networks. Maybe. As many of you know, the Tampa bay area is huge. Many different communities and cities, not to mention we’ve got an amazing diversity of cultures here.
The last thing I could think ever being possible was a year later being voted by the Tampa community “Best of The Bay” in Creative Loafing magazine, that’s just crazy talk. It’s a big honor in our local community, well, unless you are voted “Best Sex Scandal”. But it happened, just a few days ago… I became Tampa’s “Best Twitter Personality” and runner up for “Best Blogger” and I am still in a bit of shock. Creative Loafing has always been a huge part of my life since the mid 90′s, I could have never thought I would be in it’s pages with such an honor. Thank you all for voting.
Yesterday I was invited to speak on a panel at the Homemade Music Symposium in Ybor City, Florida to musicians and artists on how they can use social media to promote themselves. Many artists and bands have yet to fully grasp the full spectrum of platforms they can be using to really rock the internet and increase their fan base and buzz about themselves. I used to work for bands and records labels doing internet and event promotion for almost ten years and way back in the day of the only way to promote online was through message boards and chat rooms… in real life, the flyer and poster was your best friend and getting people to show up to your show took convincing (you don’t know how many artists I know that have helped people move just to get them to the show…) in this new world of promotion and connecting with social media it’s free, easy and doesn’t take a public relations degree to figure out. Here’s how to promote your band using social media.
“Is this real life? Yes, Chris… SOBcon is real life…”
After SOBcon, a three day social media/business/blogging mastermind convention in Chicago. I feel like the David After Dentist kid, it’s hard to step back into reality after three days of being surrounded by some of the most caring, innovative and successful people in the business. Here’s how SOBcon changed my life and the five things that you can do to change your life.
“Ten people who speak make more noise than ten thousand who are silent.”
— Napoleon Bonaparte
Foursquare Day was last Friday, did you hear about it? Many people that did thought there was a powerhouse viral marketing hot shots or a high priced PR firm behind the scenes of this global social media celebration. I would hate to burst your bubble, but reality just checked in and there’s a new mayor in town. Imagine an eye doctor, a blue haired blogger gal in her early 20′s, and a motley crew of only about fifteen of Tampa, Florida’s social media community. We’ve been hard at work, sitting crowded around laptops and among eyewear in Nathan-Bonilla Warford’s tiny optometrist office for the last month. All of us on the Foursquare Day team have found ourselves immersed in an alternate reality of 5am bedtimes, empty coffee cups and filled email boxes.
Why? Because we all were in it for one thing, to not only celebrate our love of Foursquare but come together as a global community to create an awareness of the power of social media. Did we know what the hell we were doing? Did we make any money? Nope, but we all had passion and used our each unique talents and resources via social media to connect over 250 cities around the globe for one day.
What became of all of that? Something that we could have never imagined…
Usually every April 1st, I hang up my twitter for the day. With the tons of fake news stories, announcement, event cancellations and such… I just can’t keep up with all of the deviation. Especially after last year’s Nine Inch Nails twitter announcement of the new Timberland produced album “Strobe Light”. This year, I decided to make April 1st my own devation with starting the twitter hashtag #fake4sqday with people checking in from fake locations across the globe. NOTE: Don’t really check-in to fake locations, just use the hashtag. We don’t want to clutter up Foursquare.
For Example: @critus said… I just checked into the Betty Ford Clinic! #fake4sqday
Not only is #fake4sqday a great way to celebrate April Fools with your twitter pals, but to help promote the upcoming Foursquare Day event. Where across the globe and here in Tampa, we will be having a real event with local businesses offering great deals to Foursquare users who check in to their businesses.