Posts filed under ‘Social media for small business’

Visual map of Facebook over 6 years

February 26, 2010 at 7:40 pm Leave a comment

I LOVE shout outs!

I am a high believer in merit.  We should all get rewarded for all the wonderful things we do.  This past year I have most certainly felt that warm, compassionate feeling of a job well done through the many events (GenYTO) and others (TwestivalTO, HoHoTO…) with all the money we raised for charity.  The best part of all this are the friends I made and the support (And mulla) we raised for local charities.

And boy-oh-boy did we get some pretty friggen cool shut-outs!  So cool that tweeps in Ottawa started #GenYOTT, a sister group of #GenYTO.  And, the lovely Casie Stewart mentioned moi in TechVibes as “a really smart girl with a great attitude, not to mention beautiful.” – Casie Stewart.  Umm…Cool!!!

I don’t usually pat myself on the back, or think overly highly of my accomplishments, but I can confidently say that 2009 was a fan-diddly-astic year.  THANKS FOR THE SHOUT OUTS PEEPS!

January 6, 2010 at 4:31 pm 1 comment

Worst ad of 2009 [Via BNET]

BNET News thinks that this is the worst ad of 2009. They describe it is tasteless and irrelevant. I agree.

December 11, 2009 at 2:49 pm Leave a comment

My comments regarding Neil Patel’s post Harsh Realities of Starting a Business:

Neil Patel suggests these top 7 harsh realities in starting a business.  I agree with some, but there are more important harsh realities that, although small, can eat you up inside and make you fear that the there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

His ‘Harsh Realities’:
1. Starting a business is like a roller coaster. He says there isn’t a ton of glamour in creating a company; instead it’s like a roller coaster.  You’d have to be a complete moron to think that starting out on your own is ‘glamorous’. This is a HUGE harsh reality, and fact.  There is no guaranteed level of comfort in the 1st year of business. Instead there is hope, but not too far from that there also lies failure.

2. Owning a business isn’t easier than working at a 9 to 5 job. He says that this is what most entrepreneurs believe, but it is very inaccurate. He explains that instead of having one boss you have many and that when you work at a 9 to 5 job all you have to do is work from 9 to 5. Hmm, well I know many entrepreneurs that choose their own clients, hence don’t have ‘bosses’ because they work with/for people they WANT to work with, and also hold regular work hours.

3. Consumers have to believe you are solving a problem. He says it doesn’t matter if you think you are solving a problem, all that matters is that your target customer thinks you are solving a problem. Is this not lying then if you really aren’t solving a problem?  Not only do you have to make life easier for your customers (hence the solving a problem) you actually HAVE TO SOLVE their problem(s).  If your marketing cries out a solution, then you must follow through with it.  Or else it will come back to bite you in the a**!

4. You have to make money. OK, ummm ….duh!  Unless of course starting a ‘business’ to you means donating your time/money/resources, then making money isn’t important.

5. You have to give a lot to get a little. He says in today’s world you have to give a lot. Whether it is free information or samples of your product, you have to do something to build trust from your customers. If they don’t trust you, they won’t spend money with you.  I agree with this, but at the same time, this is not new (I.e. …in today’s world).  Building trust and creating long lasting relationships is inevitable in business.  Your most loyal customers are the ones that trust you the most. David Maister speaks wonders on the issue of trustworthiness.

6. Coolness is inversely correlated to success. Here he compares Exxon Mobil to Facebook and Twitter in terms of coolness.  These are two completely different industries. You don’t have to be ‘cool’ to supply one of the most important resources, oil.  All you have to do is extract it and sell it.  When you are talking online terms, coolness IS important.  Answer me this; which brands are considered ‘cool’: Amazon, Twitter, Facebook Zappos, Piperlime?   Answer: all of them.  Now, answer me this, which brands are considered necessary: Exxon Mobil, Toronto Hydro, Twitter.  The 1st two. Twitter we can live without, but it is still cool.

7. Time is worth more than money. He says if you take your time and release your company when you think it’s perfect, you’ll be in for a big surprise. You will never be able to please everyone and you will always run into things that you never thought about. I can go on and on here, but really this all depends on your industry. Whether or not you’re selling a product or service, you MUST test it, research it, and understand it, before you make the launch.  You don’t want to bring a dysfunctional product to the mass market. It will instantly tarnish your brand.  Find a happy/safe medium between public launch, beta testing, and behind-closed-door testing.

My biggest and most obvious conclusion is that, yes entrepreneurship can be difficult, and it is not glamorous, but more specifically if you are going into business for yourself doing something you love to do, then it is NOT WORK. It is your passion.  David Foster said to the Editor of Success magazine, “If you aren’t working on Saturday or Sunday, then you don’t like what you do”.  In David Foster’s eyes, Neil Patel doesn’t like his job.

December 2, 2009 at 4:06 pm 1 comment

Overnight Sensation: Not with Social Media

social-media-logo

Social media can make you a star. You can get millions of views on YouTube, hundreds of fans on Facebook, or thousands of followers on Twitter. But it will not likely happen over night. Just like you need to go to the gym every day to get fit, you also need to invest time and research into developing your social media marketing campaign(s).

To better understand what you want out of using any social media platform, you need to develop a strategic plan first. Creating and implementing a strategic plan will help you focus on specific goals and tasks to get you ahead.

The pitfalls in using social media:
1. The BIG one to understand is that Social Media (SM) takes time! Research shows that it can take over 1 year before smb’s even gain traction. It is much like traditional forms of marketing. Repetition is key.

2. DAILY maintenance is required. Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn all require daily babysitting. You must feed and nurture all your relationships in order to get anywhere.

3. Social Media will not make you success over night. Much like point #1, you need to invest time into prospecting people (LinkedIn), creating discussions and events (Facebook and Meetup) and generating buzz (Twitter).

Now, to think that was a mouthful, but it shouldn’t discourage you. Social Media/Social media marketing is also very good for promoting your small business. But you need to take some time to really hone in on your needs and start to work backwards to get started.  Do this by digging deep into your needs for Social media. Is it to increase membership by 10% this quarter, is it to sell 20% more of your product or service, or is it to be understood as an expert in your field.  Decide what it is EXACTLY that you are trying to achieve and work backwards from there.

November 2, 2009 at 3:10 pm 1 comment

My Response to “The Psychological Aftershock of First Impressions”

My comment on The Psychological Aftershock of First Impressions

To add to your discussion though, first impressions don’t only include meeting someone for the first time. It also includes first experiences, whether at a restaurant, salon, fashion store, or even reading a book. Think, even, to the front entrance way to your home. Is the door welcoming, are the flowers in the flower bed tended to, are the stairs kept free of obstacles, and is your grass mowed? All these things lend to a house guests impressions of your home. Sure the kitchen may be messy, but they don’t see that room first. They see your entrance way.

Just like you need to tend to your welcome mat at home, you should do so with your personal welcome mat. Keep it clean, fresh, welcoming, friendly, and courteous. It makes giving that positively memorable first impression that much easier.

Have a great day!

Renée

September 25, 2009 at 2:15 pm Leave a comment

Most important things about developing a social media strategy

BE TRANSPARENT AND AUTHENTIC (Think Obama’s use of social media)
personalization should be your number one priority. Consumers are interacting in a real time basis with businesses everyday.  Website visitors want to know just who it is that is communicating on behalf of the company. Social media has to be personal (but not too personal to be successful. 
 

THINK QUALITY VERSUS QUANTITY
Trying to reach every possible customer, potential customer, or lead should not be a priority. What will result is what looks like a one way mode of advertising. DON’T DO IT. Instead focus on creating quality for your audience by engaging them and talking to them one-on-one.  You will quickly learn what their needs are.  


LISTEN, RATHER THEN DICTATE

Listen to your community. Read and reply to comments. Keep an open flow of communication.  Facebook is a useful tool to discern what people need and want. Here you can easily ask group questions, create discussions and events, and really dig deep into your audience’s true desires.


TWEET THIS!
Twitter’s almighty power to connect with people from across the globe, is still expanding:  networking, research, sales, suggestions, search, the list goes on. Be professional and courteous but also personal on Twitter.  This is solidify your businesses personality and will shape the way the public views you.


PRETTY PROFILE PIC
What you display on your social media sites will say a thousand words about who you are. Chose a well branded, high res logo, or a professional head shot.  Believe me; this will ultimately define your businesses image.


TWEET AS THOUGH YOUR MOM IS LISTENING   mean Mom
That’s right. Don’t swear, say racial slurs, be a hypocrite, lie, etc….  And avoid all spelling mistakes.  Treat the public sphere as though it was your mother. You wouldn’t want to disappoint her, would you?

 

LEARN MORE
At BizLaunch, there are many FREE live seminars and webinars to help you kick start your social media campaign. Visit www.bizlaunch.ca

September 16, 2009 at 1:54 pm Leave a comment

Easy e-Commerce website creation

Small Business e-commerce

Continue Reading September 4, 2009 at 1:46 pm Leave a comment

The fuzzy area in Social Media

 

Social Media - Grey area between awareness & engagement

 

 

 

 

May 27, 2009 at 2:26 pm Leave a comment

The Face behind your brand

When I say Elmo, you think… Sesame Street.
When I say Miss Piggy, you think … The Muppets.
When I say Steve Jobs, you think …Apple.

…I was in Starbucks this morning getting my coffee and I received an email from a friend who was announcing his resignation from his current job. There was a level of secrecy as he hadn’t made the announcement public. It made me wonder why I was one of the few selected to receive this special announcement. I checked to see who else was cc’d and was rather honoured and surprised at who else was also getting it. Then I realized that these were high-caliber, young, professionals who owned or represented a brand. He was reaching out to us for a very specific reason. It got me thinking…although some of these individuals don’t own the company they are working for, they are the face of the brand. They are the front line go to person. I wondered if these companies made the right choice in choosing such people. Although they are outgoing, intelligent, personable people, I wouldn’t say that some were the right people for the job. Perhaps I am wrong.

If you are a small business owner hiring for a brand rep., PR, community manager, community type position, make sure you select wisely as these people or this individual will be your mascot, the person and face that people will think of when communicating with or about your business. Make sure their personalities match that of your organization and that they will consistently and professionally represent your brand to its fullest potential.

February 18, 2009 at 2:27 pm Leave a comment


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