Friday, January 27, 2012

Evaluating Your Business Social Media Strategy

When evaluating your business social media strategy ask yourself, "What value are we bringing to the audience?"... If you are focusing only on self-promotion you will quickly see your fan base decline.

Remember to be a resource for your community and you will see the results you are looking for.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Little Things In Life #4

What made me smile today?

Watching the sunrise on my way into the city!

Monday, January 23, 2012

4 Ways To Get Employees On-Board W/ Social Media

So you’ve incorporated social media into your integrated marketing strategy. You’ve hired a social media manager or a social media agency to jumpstart your brand. They’ve secured your brand’s standing in the space by developing a custom strategy and building your custom branded pages. What’s next? A lot.
Jumping into social media is not just about being present, it’s about building relationships and networking in order to achieve your main goal: Sales. As a business, it’s important to keep in mind that engagement and participation play a huge role in succeeding in social media. Thus it’s incredibly important to have employee’s buy-in to help drive engagement.

So how do you go about getting employees excited about your social media goals and helping your business attain social media objectives? It’s not only important to educate, motivate and empower your employees to take action; you also need to inspire them. Here are some ways to do just that:
1.Educate! – This is something I’ve learned over and over again. As a social media addict I understand the power of social media. Some people don’t have that same understanding because a lack of exposure, they just need a little education to understand how to use the tools and how it’s beneficial for both businesses and personal brands. This is an on-going strategy, social media is continually evolving and your employees should always be aware of best practices so they know how to best represent themselves and your brand.
2.Create Ambassadors! – An easy way to help jumpstart your goals is to gather a small group of social media ambassadors who already know some of the ropes. They don’t have to be gurus. They just need to have a love of social media. These employees will serve as role models to other employees to demonstrate best practices for your company’s social media goals.
3.Empower! – Encourage employees to come up with new social media ideas and tactics. One strategy is to incorporate social media ideation into quarterly meetings and encourage employees to creatively come up with new ideas.
4.Motivate! – Consider offering rewards for employees that can create out of the box ideas. Every business would love to have content go viral, create a contest to see who can come up with the cleverest idea to promote your business.

The most important lesson in gaining buy-in from employees is to help them understand that social media is a win-win situation. When they actively build their own social media presence it helps their own credibility in their expertise, it also allows them to help build brand awareness for your business. Remember this is a marathon not a sprint so keep an open mind and stay focused on the objectives. Not everyone is going to jump on board immediately. Stay patient and steadfast.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Little Things In Life #3

Something that made me smile today....

Finding my mug hidden in a little corner where I accidently left it Friday. I was searching desperately over the entire office. I thought it was gone forever and I must confess it's my favorite mug of all times.

I'm incredibly happy I found it and that we are are together again! :)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Have you smiled today?

They were together in the House.

Just the two of them.
It was a cold, dark, stormy night. The storm had come quickly
and each time the thunder boomed he watched her jump.
She looked across the room and admired his strong appearance...and
wished that he would take her in his arms, comfort her and protect her
from the storm.

Suddenly, with a pop, the power went out..... She screamed...
He raced to the sofa where she was cowering.
He didn't hesitate to pull her into his arms.
He knew this was a forbidden union and
expected her to pull back.

He was surprised when she didn't resist but instead clung to him.
The storm raged on...

They knew it was wrong...
Their families would never understand... So consumed were
they in their FEAR that they heard no opening
of doors...just the faint click of a camera......

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Little Things In Life #2

What made me smile today?!

Missing the first train and expecting to have to wait 10 minutes for the next, when the next train pulls up right behind the train I missed! To top it off, I got a seat!! Sweetness!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Little Things In Life!!! #1

I am reading "Digital Leader" by Erik Qualman and just came across the chapter about avoiding negativity an embracing positivity! I want to start a new tradition in honor of 1000 Awesome Things. My little version "The Little Things In Life", here I'll chronicle some little joys that bring a smile to my face!!!

Today... Discovering an amazing new candle scent!

How about you? What's something today that made you smile?!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Mini Cooper of Chicago: My Mobile/Social Experience

I absolutely love the integration of mobile and social. With over 4 billion smart phones in the world, over 500 million Facebook users and over 100 million active users on Twitter it’s no surprise that most companies are starting to integrate mobile and social. I recently came across an interesting campaign while I was visiting the Lincoln Park Zoo for ZooLights Presented by ComEd and Charter One.

As we were walking around I noticed a Mini Cooper sitting by itself lit up on a display. Of course I was curious. The first thing I noticed was the large QR code on the back window with a sign below it that read:

Since I work in the mobile industry my first instinct is to always scan the QR code to evaluate the user experience. I had one big problem from the get-go… the QR code wouldn’t scan. I tried for at least 5 minutes (at least it felt that long standing out there in 30 degree weather!). I think it had something to do with the lighting and the glare so I took a picture and was hoping to scan the QR code later from the image when I got home. No such luck, it still didn’t work.

This is a huge lesson in the placement of a mobile call to action; make sure to always be aware of your users holistic experience. In this case, users were going to be seeing the campaign at night with very little direct light making the QR code hard to use. The windshield reflection also didn’t help matters. The inability to scan the QR code caused a distinct break in the user experience, hence most users won’t/can’t proceed.

I absolutely loved the call to action to post your picture to the Mini of Chicago Facebook page. I’m assuming the QR code led to the Facebook page but I’ll never know for sure.
One thing I would have done differently is making the call to action a little more specific. Instead of just “post a picture”, I would have said take a picture of yourself with the Mini Cooper and post to the Mini Copper Facebook page. Users friend’s will be seeing the photo and wouldn’t you rather them see your brand associated with the photo for the contest?

Overall I think Mini Copper of Chicago was on the right track but missed a few keys details that would have made this an A+ mobile/social campaign. I posted my picture on the Mini of Chicago Facebook page the day after seeing the campaign and not surprisingly I was the first person to post. Considering the user experience is disjointed and took a lot longer than it should have, I’m not all that surprised. I only took the extra effort so I could have the entire user experience.