spin sucks

A Day in the Life of a Chief Content Officer

By Communications, Public Relations, Social Media

Lisa Gerber is the author of today’s guest post, the chief content officer of Spin Sucks and the soon to launch Spin Sucks Pro. She is an Idaho expat in Chicago, trying to make mountains out these molehills. They aren’t even molehills really. She also tweets for @spinsucksIt’s Tuesday night. I’m in the office wrapping up my day and creating my list for Wednesday. Here is what it looks like:Lisa Gerber

6 am: Get up

Ride bike to office – try not to be angry biker chick.

Coffee cup #1.

7:30 to 9: Spend about 90 minutes checking, commenting and responding to emails, my Google Reader, Twitter for both @lisagerber and @spinsucks, Facebook, and Google Plus.

9 am and coffee cup #2: My brain is optimally caffeinated at 1 ½ cups. It’s time to write. Close out the distractions and write content for Spin Sucks Pro.

11 am: My world revolves around a big fat spreadsheet called curriculum.xls. It’s the editorial calendar and the pivotal piece to any work for a CCO. I have several tabs set up, divided into big areas such as professional development, blogging, SEO, website, social marketing, and the last one is for random ideas – a sort of dumping ground to be sorted later. Each line has a topic, a deadline, an assigned person and it’s supposedly organized in sub-topics, steps and order of scheduled publication date.

I keep this open all day. As I go about my business, and ideas spark, I add them in the appropriate tab. Last week, I moderated a Spin Sucks Pro webinar with Marcus Sheridan, The Sales Lion. He is never lacking in content topics. He gets them every day from his sales team, and his customers. Every time anyone asks a question of their pool business, he asks himself, “Have I blogged about this?” He keeps a notebook in his car. I have my notebook too. and I have my spreadsheet.

Break and Reward: Facebook time!! Then, check all the networks and respond to anything that needs immediate attention.

Early afternoon: Screen queries and pitches for Spin Sucks. We typically invite guest bloggers, but still entertain pitches and queries. Our team has been working together to refine the blog guidelines and ensure we’re providing content that matters, and that provoke ideas and conversation.

Next, review the guest submissions for the following week. Edit or return to writer for requested edits. That was something that was hard for me to do at first; send it back for edits. No one has ever complained. Don’t be afraid to send guest submissions back for changes. It’s your house.

Late afternoon: Spins Sucks Pro contributions: Each week I brainstorm with the team on what subject matter experts we’d like to invite to contribute in the form of articles, videos, audio or webinars. I work with guest contributors on topics and guidelines.

4 or 5: Take a break for a run or a yoga class. I use that time to resolve any unresolved issues floating in my brain.

Evening: Wrap up loose ends, respond to emails, input Thursday’s guest post, comment on Spin Sucks, and write my list for Thursday.

That’s what the list looks like, anyway; not that the day ends up looking like that. Because, then I arrive at the office in the morning and well, the universe usually has other things in store for me. But a girl can dream, right?

I know a lot of you are chief content officers of your own businesses, whether by title or not. What would you add to the list?

Lisa Gerber is the chief content officer of Spin Sucks and the soon to launch Spin Sucks Pro. She is an Idaho expat in Chicago, trying to make mountains out these molehills. They aren’t even molehills really. She also tweets for @spinsucks

Dear CEO: Letters to the Top on Marketing, Social Media and Building Community

By Social Media

The following is a letter I contributed to a 32-author book pulled together and published by my friends at Arment Dietrich. The book is called Dear CEO and provides advice to the top from business leaders who are experts on vision, culture, community and integration. It was my honor to be included in this group. To buy the full book, please visit http://www.spinsucks.com/webinars/

Dear CEO,

There‘s something you‘ve been hoping you could continue to ignore. Year after year the time to invest in establishing your role in the social web has just not existed. Now you may be finding you‘re out of date, that all those tools you were just starting to understand have morphed and changed and now 2011 looks overwhelming to you.

Don’t let another year pass with you out of the social loop.

There are a few, simple activities you can do that will get you connected and engaged to an acceptable level for a CEO. If you‘re not brave enough to investigate it on your own, hire someone to coach you through these (usually a half or possibly a whole day immersed in social media startup should do the trick).

Start using a feed reader such as Google Reader. At a minimum, you should be subscribing to your own company’s blog. You should also be subscribing to blogs and other online content in your industry. Follow the blogs of your team members, to stay informed about what’s going on in the lives of the people you work with; not so much to watchdog what’s being said. Learn how to create feeds to alert you to online mentions of your business, industry news or key people and plug them into the reader as well. Using a feed reader makes reading online content much more efficient – and is something you want others on your team to master; set the example by making it part of your daily routine.

Create a LinkedIn profile and if you already have one, make sure it is 100 percent complete. You are likely the best connected person in your company. Does your online presence reflect that? Your LinkedIn profile is searchable; make sure your profile is what you want others to find. It should include a photo, your complete work history and contact information. Take the time to upload all contacts. Help your business development team by allowing your social network to connect to theirs.

Set up a personal Twitter account with a real photo (not the company logo) and a name that makes sense (your actual name is a good place to start). Your bio should include the company name, your title and keywords that reflect the kind of business you‘re in. We don’t care if you tweet; in fact, don’t if you don’t have anything to say. Please follow people in your industry, your employees and others you find interesting. You can find these people by using a tool like Tweepz or by looking at who your colleagues follow. After you‘ve spent time listening to the Twitter conversation, you might find you have something to say after all.

Give others in your organization the authority to use social media, and therefore build relationships on behalf of the company. Whether you’re blogging, tweeting or doing nothing at all, make sure others in your organization know you endorse their involvement in social media on behalf of the company, and reward them for doing a good job.

Keeping up with the latest in communications is not easy and no one expects you to figure it out on your own. Ask for help when you need it and don‘t be afraid to admit that this is an area where you could use some guidance. There are plenty of resources out there to help you get what you need.

Best of luck,

Marijean Jaggers


Jaggers Communications LLC





Social Media Motivation: The $100 Solution?

By Social Media
Jaggers Communications social media workshop

Photo credit: www.cramerphoto.com

Over the last few years, I have asked a lot of really smart people how they have inspired others to get on board with social media on behalf of their companies.  On the phone I’ve grilled both Gini Dietrich and Elizabeth Sosnow on this topic and they both had helpful advice.

One of the first answers to my question came from Shel Israel, who said “you have to seduce them into it.” He’s right, of course. But it is not always easy to identify what’s going to make someone get interested in contributing.

My friend Janet Driscoll Miller of Search Mojo was talking about this very topic recently and she noted the same approach endorsed by others in the field who have been successful.

The approach is this: when it comes to encouraging staff members to contribute to a business’s online presence, the only — and really the only — way to be successful in doing this is to make it part of each employee’s job responsibilities. Furthermore, everyone I’ve asked finds it necessary to tie bonus compensation to social media contribution. One firm rewards the employee with the highest ranked blog post for the month with $100 cash.

If, as one firm owner found, money doesn’t motivate, then pulling the hard-core card does; if someone’s not pulling their weight, it’s going to come up in performance reviews.

It’s too bad that for some employees they don’t “get it” and find their own passion, particularly if they’re marketers. It’s sad that some people have to be bribed to do their job well. The tide is bound to turn, however, as employers place a more and more significant emphasis on an employee’s role as an ambassador for the company.

If you’ve dealt with this issue within an agency or any company trying to develop content for the social web, what have you found to be a successful form of motivation? What have you tried that doesn’t work?

Moderating Blog Comments: The Discussion on Spin Sucks

By Communications

Oddly enough, I’m only posting this to drive you to another blog post on another site. I really want you to read this post: Moderating Blog Comments on Spin Sucks, the fight against destructive spin. Pay attention to the conversation unfolding in the comments themselves. It is a discussion worth your time and consideration.

The handling of blog comments – to moderate, to not moderate and all that resides between the two – has long been discussed. Many of us have different opinions on the topic. Personally, I don’t moderate, meaning, I don’t approve or delete comments before they appear — they are automatically published and if the comment is in violation of my comment policy, then I will remove it later. I’ve only had to do this once in about seven years of blogging so for me, it works.

I’m interested in this conversation though, and how Livefyre, the tool helping the conversation happen, will change the way we interact using comments on blogs.

Join the conversation — what do you think about moderating blog comments?