Jason Baer

How to Seduce Others into Social Media

By Social Media

I’ve been thinking a lot about how we’ve been successful at moving the social media needle in business.

It’s what Jay Baer and Amber Naslund call The Now Revolution, that tipping point at which business realized that this social phenomenon that has over taken the Internet is not going away; that it affects business, for good or for bad and ignoring it is a not only a bad business practice, but can cause your business to fail.

While I’m trying to figure out how to afford to buy a copy of Jay and Amber’s brilliant book for all my clients, I asked my readers to share some of the ways they’ve been able to create excitement around social strategy. Some of the best answers are here:

20% of New Patient Base Comes from Social Media

I’ve shared with my colleagues that as a working mom with a little one, launching a biz in a down economy in a new location…all I could manage WAS growing my biz through social media and connecting online.

I’ve had at least 20% of my new patient base come in as referrals from social media, not to mention thousands of dollars of free media exposure on the news, magazines (including a national publication), newspapers, and numerous websites….all from consistently and sincerely getting engaged in social media.

It’s cost me time and sweat equity, but the pay-off has been tremendous. Seriously…who can’t afford to get involved today? — Dr. Dolly Garnecki, Spinal Health and Wellness, http://www.scoliosisdoc.com/

Show, Don’t Tell

When we had our first meeting to discuss the fact that we really needed to be engaging with our customers via social media I really didn’t need to actually SAY much at all. I just pulled up the very active Facebook pages of our top competitors in each of our geographic areas… they were there, they were active, and it was CLEAR they were talking to OUR customers! Point made!  – Andrea Heapes, High Peak Sportswear, http://www.hipeak.com/

Networking on Steriods

In 18 months on Twitter and Facebook I’ve met, connected with, and become friends with far more people here, than I had in the previous 10 years living here without it. Social media is networking on steroids. Trying to go without it is like leading a sedentary life and expecting to remain fit. — Steve Gaines, Monticello Media http://twitter.com/SteveGaines62

These are great stories to share with clients, businesses and organizations still dragging their feet into “now.”

If your business is already engaged in social media, what was the tipping point that made you begin?

5 Ways Social Media has Worked for Me

By Social Media

I was reading my friend Ken’s post about his community and all the amazing ways the members of the community have come together to help one another.

I have a deep appreciation for the benefits I’ve received from being a part of an online community. I know how much having a broad social network has helped me develop new business and assist others to find jobs and other opportunities. I, of course, realize the benefits of being a content creator and have enjoyed the payoff in the form of friends, great working relationships and the kind of support that has lifted me up and given me confidence, fresh ideas and inspiration.

Here are five personal stories of my social media success:

  1. One of the longest-term clients I’ve had knew me first because of my personal blog (where I used to write a lot more about social media till I had this blog). She was delighted to learn that I lived and worked only a few miles away from her business. A mutual connection in our social network introduced us and the rest is history.
  2. I am very good about keeping my online social network up-to-date, entering new contacts into LinkedIn and connecting with new people I meet at conferences and networking events as soon as I can. This practice has led to speaking engagements and the introduction to new clients. I’m also pretty committed to providing recommendations to others on LinkedIn, allowing me to also receive endorsements from others with whom I’ve worked. It’s a wonderful boost to my business to have these online “testimonials” about the work I’ve done.
  3. In a wonderful mash-up of more traditional media and social media, I’ve worked with a local affiliate of three television stations as a blogging expert and social media correspondent as well as providing guidance as a consultant to the news staff of the stations. This mutually beneficial relationship has allowed me to develop relationships with a wide local audience and helped the television media use a social presence to expand their reach and build more solid relationships with their audience, a very gratifying experience indeed.
  4. On Twitter, I have met, followed and learned from many people in my industry. A few of these have included Gini Dietrich, Jay Baer and Ken Mueller. I’ve contributed guest posts to Spin Sucks and to Inkling Media’s blog, helping me increase my reach to new audiences. Not only that, but all three of these people are dear friends whom I’ve enjoyed knowing, reading and talking to often.
  5. There’s the misguided perception among the uninitiated that is that the social media active live their lives online. Those who aren’t engaged online seem to think that those who are conduct all communication via Twitter, Facebook and other online networks. What they’re missing is the moment that two people who have known one another well via an online relationship meet in person for the first time. Kismet! Joy! Bonding! A relationship cemented with a handshake or a hug. One of my favorite instances of this is when Self-Made Mom and I kept e-mailing and Instant Messaging (this was in a pre-texting era) to find one another across a room full of hundreds of other women bloggers (“I’m wearing polka dots!”) until we spotted one another and beamed the smiles of people who were already friends.

When people wonder if social media and social networking “really works” I can answer that with real stories of my own (and these are five of dozens that I have and love to share) and those of clients with whom I’ve worked.

I continue to be surprised and delighted by the connections and re-connections formed via social media, like the opportunity coming from a high school friend and another coming in from my sister’s college roommate — don’t discount the reach of your entire network. You just never know where the next opportunity will come from.

Tell me: what are some ways social media has worked for you?

Arrogance and the Social Media “Expert”

By Uncategorized

I eschew the term expert when talking about social media – preferring the term “specialist.” I don’t think anyone can be an expert in social media – with a field so new and ever growing and changing there are only specialists – people like me who devote lots of time and energy to staying on top of the game. I think there are people who are passionate about social media and the power it holds, but to call oneself an expert smacks of an undeserved arrogance.

A word about arrogance, though, as I acknowledge that those of us in this field have a certain amount of it. I argue that it has been necessary and it is an attribute that has grown out of a need to be absolutely convinced and convincing when sharing the benefits of engaging in social media for business. We are the self-taught forerunners of this field who have spent, in most cases, the better part of the last seven years defending the internet. We’ve had to stare down corporate leaders afraid to dip their toes into online waters and demonstrate beyond the shadow of a doubt that the benefits far outweigh the risks.

When most of us started in this area the word blogger was said in the same tone as cancer; bloggers rose from the pasty-faced basement dwellers to a chosen few who make millions and others who just make a difference. By definition, a blogger almost has to have some level of conceit to trust that their thoughts and online ponderings would be of interest to anyone at all.

I’ve been part of an audience of those learning at the feet of those who have taught social media in the PR industry, this guy, this guy, this guy and this guy in particular. They all have one mannerism in common – a dismissive shaking of the head when a member of the community begins down the road of denial (it won’t work! we don’t have time! we can’t allow our people to self-publish! we need control!). I’ve noted this move and truly don’t find it arrogant (although corporate leaders, uncomfortable still with this deep end of the pool into which they’ve been thrown most likely do). I find it admirable – and it’s that confidence, that absolute gut-deep knowledge that you’re right and you know what you’re talking about and can prove it that I believe I’ve realized for myself. Does that make me an expert? No, but I’m practicing that head shake for the next time a doubter is in the room.