Archive for May, 2009
A couple of weeks ago Mashable held a smashing mash in Atlanta for over 400 of its closest friends .. who signed up before the fire marshalls could call Stop! no more people. I shared a glass of vino or two with friends, got to hug a live pink boa, complements of Jungle Disk, and met new people. However it became crystal clear that although Diva Marketing celebrated its 5th blog-birthday my social media network is more global than local.
I found myself asking, "Who are these people and what do they do? What is happening in Atlanta social media marketing? To para phrase from my friends at BlogHer ..Where are the Atlanta women in social media marketing?"
A few months back BBF Dan Greenfield suggested that I interview the women in Atlanta who are involved in social media marketing. Last week ideas synergized .. why not create a resource list that highlights the women in Atlanta who are working in social media marketing? But not just a boring list .. a series of mini interviews where we can get to know these women better. Along the way perhaps new friendships will take online offline.
Criteria: using social media as a marketing strategy for your business ventures or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Look for the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing posts over the next couple of weeks.
Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media marketing provides GourmetStation with non-conforming, non-traditional, casual and comfortable ways of communicating with our customers outside of our website. All social media tactics provide our brand with a means for different aspects of our brand personality to shine through.
2. My favorite social media tactic is our travel and culture blog, Delicious Destinations which include guest writers from around the world.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? With Internet driven social media tactics, I believe it will be difficult for any city to be a hub. The Internet is the great equalizer giving all regions the chance to participate.
4. 2 sentences about your company – GourmetStation is a national food gifting company specializing in 3 & 4 course gourmet dinners, steak & seafood dinners, soup samples and dessert gifts. GourmetStation products also include dining certificates and monthly dinner clubs used by both consumers and businesses. I primarily focus on: B2C and B2B
5. Began in social media marketing: 2005
(Bloggy disclosure GourmetStation was one of my first social media marketing clients .. and proof that clients can be dear friends.)
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media means staying relevant and informed in very turbulent times. Without social media, there's not much I could offer clients, or show potential ones, that could possibly set me apart from the pack.
2. My favorite social media tactic is is the distribution of a video, or other original media I've created for myself or for a client, via Twitter. So easy. So fun. Such immediate feedback.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? In the corporate arena, Atlanta's greatest challenge is getting over the tendency to do things the way they've always been done. For decades. Right now is just the crazy time to try something oh-so-bleeding edge. In an economy like this, what could it possibly hurt?!
4. 2 sentences about your company – Grayson Daughters is the founder of WaySouth Media, Inc. – producing and promoting new media. She blogs at Mostly Media, and you can follow her on Twitter as SpaceyG. Her very latest online venture is MediaConnection.tv.
5. Began in social media marketing – I started using social media in 1995! (I think that's when I got my first dial-up/AOL account.) I started the first AOL Melrose Place chatroom on AOL, jointly with some dude from LA named J.T. Bug. I'll never forget that name, nor that first live chatroom experience. I published a southern culture webzine called WaySouth from '98-2000. I've been blogging since May of 2005, and was an early adopter of Twitter and Facebook (when it went beyond colleges).
1. What does social media marketing mean to you?
Social media marketing opens up channels of communication and potential sales that did not exist before. Opportunities pop up that twentieth century marketing did not provide.
2. My favorite social media tactic is to provoke discussions.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub?
Traffic! People sit in commuter traffic all day and are too exhausted to peep – much less care about social media.
4. 2 sentences about your company – The Oliver/Sorano Group, Inc. provides marketing and PR support, including social media strategies, to clients in a variety of industries. I primarily focus on: B2B.
5. Began in social media marketing around 2006-07.
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social marketing is about the ability to connect to your target market cost effectively, frequently, and succinctly with value content. It is about using multiple channels and layering communications for ultimate effectiveness.
2. My favorite social media tactic is the variety of tools and applications available on Twitter, acebook, and LinkedIN that add fun, convenience, and facilitate the sharing of information. Strategically I am a fan of Tweetlater as it allows me maximum control of my time while still maintaining by exposure and my reach.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Atlanta has a golden opportunity to truly land on the map of social media, but to do so will require more leaders to step forward and claim their place. The city is home to many great entrepreneurs and creatives, yet still the value of social media is not always understood.
4. 2 sentences about your company – I speak, consult, train and mentor small businesses who think BIG and want to harness the power of social media and new marketing taking their business to the next level, and unleashing unlimited success.
5. Began in social media marketing – I have been using social media since 2008, and have been offering to clients this year. I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C, Nonprofit, Education. I believe it is the single factor that can keep many businesses afloat in tough economic times as it provides simple, effective tools to reach targeted buyers and decision makers whether business to business or business to consumer. Social media is the cornerstone of relationship marketing and with women becoming an increasingly significant force in both consumer and business goods, new marketing as social media is considered, is essential.
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social Media Marketing means reaching customers and communities on behalf of my clients using social spaces on the Internet, where people come together to do/discuss/create/laugh/complain about what interests them.
2. My favorite social media tactic is monitoring and participating in the range of social media discussions to identify what Really Urgent Community Need a client can help solve to make something better for an existing or potential customer.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? To replace the “broadcast and sales pitch” mindset with genuine listening and understanding. To talk with not at.
4. 2 sentences about your company: Sessum Creative is an Atlanta-based marketing and public relations consultancy focused on helping clients talk with their markets using the power of social media and the Internet. Working with clients at home and internationally since 1998, we help clients with strategy, messaging, content development and media relations. I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C, Internet startups
5. Began in social media marketing - I entered social media as a blogger myself in 2001 with my personal blog allied). My first social media clients were Elimitaste Gum, Qumana, and Cox Communications. I helped these clients develop a blogging strategy and put in place processes to make sure that strategy worked. The primary goal was to use blogs as an effective way to talk to customers and build thought leadership.
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media is public relations at its best. It is old fashioned communications with new technology. You must create relationships and spend quality time with people in order to have a genuine dialogue.
2. My favorite social media tactic is Facebook status updates and photo postings.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub?Too many advertising focused minds.
4. Include 2 sentences about your company. Melissa Libby & Associates was founded in 1992 and specializes in PR and social marketing for restaurants and anything edible or quaffable. I primarily focus on: B2B.
5. Began social media marketing – I attended a social media seminar at the University of Georgia in October of 2007 and it changed my business model immediately. On the way home I spoke to a client, Fifth Group Restaurants, and the owner agreed for his restaurants to be our guinea pigs as we figured everything out. We dove in. By December 2007 I had restructured my company to accommodate the social media function and now have two full-time employees who do nothing but SM.
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Honestly? Most of the time, when I hear phrases like “social media marketing,” the first assocation in my head is “obnoxious.” That might be unfair; but I guess I've just seen a lot of companies/individuals where I want to scream, “You're doing it wrong!” I don't really use social media for marketing. It's an integral part of my life. I've been doing the social media thing since before anyone used the term “social media,” and it touches all areas of my life. I don't want to get ranty but I have to say one thing I've been disappointed with in the “social media scene” (such as it is) in Atlanta is how there is so much focus on business, marketing, PR to the exclusion of anything else.
If that's not your primary focus with social media, you're really looked down upon by a lot of people; some of them can't even conceive of someone not using social media purely as a marketing tool. It's frustrating because the people who are busy building their “personal brand” and establishing themselves as “thought leaders” wouldn't be doing what they're doing if it weren't for those of us who got into blogging, etc. years ago, back when the business world as a whole scoffed at us.
Example: At SoCon07, a fellow attendee argued with me when I talked about (how) transparency and being real are important things online. He was actually very condescending and was stuck on the idea of, your life will be ruined if someone sees you doing something dumb on YouTube. But funny thing, at SoCon08, he was back, and this time he was a social media consultant.
2. My favorite social media tactic is being accountable to myself and others.
3. In 140 characters – What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Entrepreneurs in Atlanta need to think outside the box for real and be proactive, not reactive.
4. Include 2 sentences about your company. The Georgia Podcast Network isn't really a company, except for tax purposes! It's portal site for Georgia-based podcasts. If you live in Georgia and want to start a podcast, you can host it on the Georgia Podcast Network for free. It also includes a directory of podcasts based in Georgia that are hosted on other sites. The show Rusty and I cohost, Mostly ITP, was voted Best of Atlanta 2006 by Creative Loafing, and Best of Atlanta 2008 by Atlanta Magazine.
I primarily focus on: Life, friends, activism, work, technology, sexuality, politics, learning, thinking… and whatever else happens to strike my fancy at a particular moment.
5. Began in social media – I started my blog in April 2002 – so I recently had my 7th blogiversary. I've had a web site since 1996, though (or a "home page" as we called them back then) and have been writing about my life online since then. I wrote a little bit about my history on the internet
I recently found an article that someone sent me back in 1997. I don't know who gave it to me but I saved the article because while the concept was strange to me the idea intrigued me. It was Tom Peters' – the brand called you. As the fates would have ..soon after reading it I was down-sized from my job with the Georgia Lottery Company. Thoughts that a company would want to hire "more than a resume" were radical 12 years ago.
- Who am I anyway? Am I my resume? That is a picture of a person I don't know. What does he want from me? What should I try to be? So many faces all around, and here we go. I need this job, oh God, I need this show. I CAN DO THAT – A Chorus Line – I Hope I Get It
Girlfriend, there was more – Peters said we should manage our personal brand. What did that mean? I should be wearing Jimmy Choos instead of Gucci or investing in a Mont Blanc instead of Bic pens? Did that extend to non business aspect of my life too? In one of my first resumes I included creative cooking. I was told it wasn't "professional" and took it out. Should I add it back it .. was that part of my brand called me?
But as confusing as it was to figure out how to navigate this new way of presenting myself in 1997, it no way reaches the complexities that the Internet and social media have in impacting the brand called you. A few weeks ago I was talking with my favorite niece about the photos on her Facebook page. Last year Jessica Robyn went from college student to career girl. She's more aware of her online presence, especially after the Facebook debacle of content ownership, these days.
Jessica might error on the more liberal side but what about the people in the Boomer generation who are being "down sized" or thought they were retired and now must enter the job market again? They are learning that their resumes must extend beyond paper (or digital) to LinkedIn, sometimes Facebook and if they are adventurous to Twitter. Finding the right balance is a new tight-rope act for many.
With Diva Marketing I guess I'm getting it right because someone who does understand personal branding, Dan Schawbel, publisher of Personal Branding Magazine, highlighted me in his May issue – titled Female Power Brands. Thanks to Dan and Justin Levy for the interview.
- "In this issue, we’ve interviewed some of the brightest and most talented female brands on the planet .."
I am honored to join divas Sarah Austin, Natalie Gulbis, Laura Ries Valeria Maltoni and Anita Campbell who were also profiled in this edition. In addition, there are articles written by fabulous women: Ann Smarty, Christine B. Whittemore, Cece Salomon-Lee, Nisha Chittal, Judy Martin, Thursday Bram, Maria Reyes-McDavis, Becky Carroll, Pamela Slim, Camille Watson, Natalie MacNeil, and Angela Natividad.
For your reading pleasure .. one of the the answers from my Female Power Brands interview. Sort of like saying that .. Female Power Brands. (I'm thinking of turning the pink boa into a super diva cape! What do you think Connie Reece and Mutha Mae?)
Personal Branding: What role do you think online personal branding will play in getting hired over the next few years?
Toby/Diva Marketing: Looking at how a personal brand fits into an organization's brand, I can't help think of enterprises that have opened social media to their employees. Those companies seem to have a strong sense of "self" e.g., their corporate brand and are secure enough to let their employees' brands complement the enterprise brand.
Personal branding done well extends business into more of a "personal" world. It's a way of taking what is on the inside and courageously letting people see it on the outside. Perhaps (some) women struggle with not being perfect 24-7 especially in the world of business. However, on the flip side it's a way of connecting with people and women do that so well.
As we speak Human Resources is online searching for information about their latest candidates. The perception that someone takes away after reading your posts or tweets or LinkedIn profile is an additional element that will be incorporated into a hiring decision. Ready or not .. you inevitably are creating a personal brand. Why not step back and be a little more strategic? ###
The Internet and social media have changed the personal brand game. We no longer
have the luxury of only building our image, which does impact our
credibility, based on a choice between designer shoes or flip flops.
How do you maintain your authentic self online when Google has become HR's
What does personal branding in the 21st century mean when the whole
world knows not only your name but your favorite toys, games, wine,
beer, friends, dating status, doctors and opinions on life in general?
Maybe when Dan and Jessica are in charge of running corporations it won't matter
much but in 2009 it's a factor.