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Friday Fun: Candy Voting Halloween Costume


Friday Fun is Diva Marketing's virtual happy hour from cosmos to Jack to lemonade. A waiting for the weekend 'playground' time to be sophisticated-silly. Or sometimes just plain silly.

Candy_vote_08 Nine year old Moey from Decatur, GA found a way to combine Halloween trick or treating with reminding his neighbors to vote. People voted with their candy. Of course in keeping with web 2.0 politics there is a Candy Vote website complete with videos and the opportunity to drop your comment. 

Ballots will be eaten; however, results were carefully counted prior to consumption. 'Happy Halloween and don't forget to vote.

AJC article

For Someone ..


Recently Someone said to me, "Whatcha been doing these days?" "Pretty much the same stuff .. social media events, playing with Maxie, planting a few pansies, seeing a few plays, dinners with friends, on a quest to find great under $15/bottle wines .. just the usual." said I.

"Why don't you post it on your blog?" said Someone. "Diva Marketing is a business blog I mostly talk about social media marketing and branding .. that sort of stuff." said I.

"Oh, well .. can you at least let me know where you'll be speaking? Just in case we're in the same city at the same time?" said Someone. "You won't think I'm being too well .. promotional?" said I.

"That's crazy." said Someone. "Would you also want to see the presentation that I developed for the Georgia Chapter of PRSA this week?" said I.  "Def." said Someone.

For Someone .. Chicago in Oct, New York in Nov, Seattle in Dec and Orlando in Jan. On the road details here.

Thanks Geoff Livingston for - Network Solutions All Stars, Lance Weatherby - for Brown Bag ATDC and Julie Squires - for PRSA Independent Agency SIG enjoyed the opportunities to talk social this week without getting on a plane .. all in Atlanta.

For Someone ..

I had access to the emails of the the Atlanta PRSA Independent Agency members and asked them what they wanted to discuss in our session. Their issues were different than the direction I had begun so I scrapped the deck and built to address their questions. The result .. deeper involvement, better learnings, more fun for all.

Links from PPT: GeekMommy, JNJ BTW, i am bossy, Goodwill of Greater Washington, Frozen Pea Fund, Shel Israel, Darren Rowse, Zappos - Twitter, Hugh MacLeod -gapingvoid, Donna Tocci

Social Media Conference In Your PJs


Netsol_solutionstars Livingston Communications and Network Solutions have teamed to create a unique online event - Solution Stars Video Conference on Wed October 29th starting at 1p. Last month at BlogWorld,  your virtual hosts - Geoff Livingston, author of Now Is Gone and Social Media Swami, Shashi Bellamkonda - interviewed 32 industry leaders about how social media can be used to support small business owners' marketing strategies. They edited the videos into a documentary style video covering 8 topics:

  • Building Web Presence
  • The Social Opportunit
  • Start with Listening
  • Strategy Drives Outreach
  • You Need Social Networks
  • To Blog or Not to Blog
  • Visibility Through Search
  • Rising Above the Noise
  • Time Demands

Participants: author Tim Ferriss, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, All-Top Guy Kawasaki,
Darren Rowse - ProBlogger, Chris Brogan - CrossTech Media, Rohit Bhargava, author of Personality Not Included, Wendy Piersall - Sparkplugging.com,, Lionel Menchaca - Dell, Brian Solis, author of PR 2.0/FutureWorks, Steve Hall, Ad Rants, Scott Monty - Ford Motor Company, Liz Strauss - Successful Blog, Lee Odden - TopRankMarketing, ason Billingsly - ElasticPath, Robyn Tippins - Yahoo! Developer Network, Brett Tabke - WebMaster World, David Alston - Radian6, Jason Falls - Social Media Explorer, Mari Smith - Relationship Marketing Specialist, Jennifer Openshaw - WeSeed.com, Matt Dickman - Fleishman-Hillard, David Berkowitz - 360i, Ryan Anderson - Overlay.TV, Becky McCray - author SmallBizSurvival.com, Warren Whitlock - BestSellerAuthors.com, Chris Baggott - Compendium Software, Lorelle VanFossen - author, Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging, Dave Taylor - Intuitive Systems, Paul Chaney - International Blogging and New Media Association, Linda Bustos - ElasticPath, Jay Berkowitz - Ten Golden Rules and me (!) Toby Bloomberg - Diva Marketing. 

Read More

Geoff Livingston's series highlighting each topic . Facebook . Yahoo Event

Social Media Changes Lives - What's Your Story?


Change_poster Hey Shel,  I need to change the answer to your question:

4. How has it changed you? -

Answered: I think I’m still the same person I was before I began .. blah blah blah

In 2005, Shel Israel interviewed me for the book Naked Conversations. Most of my responses (a few were even a bit controversial) about blogging apply to social media marketing in 2008. But three years later question #4 would have a different response.

Last week driving back from speaking about social media to Jennifer Giffith's advertising class at the University of Georgia (UGA) I had a few extra minutes .. well several since I once again got lost getting on 316 back to Atlanta. (The students were amazing, our conversation was energize, I have a few new Facebook friends and Pamela Petersen even launched a blog - Advertising Media and Marketing Explored.)

I realized that the experiences from social media, including talking to terrific college students, influenced who I am from the "me" of pre social media days 2004 to the "me" of 2008. So my answer to Shel's question would be different today; because of the lessons learned I have changed ..

  • Trust - in myself
  • Trust - in the community that people will help you get it "right." Right may not be the direction you began with but frequently results in is a stronger outcome. People have different truths and that's okay.
  • Acceptance - accepting ideas from people when I didn't ask for feedback.
  • Patience - not everyone will "get" social the first time.
  • Passion - for an industry that I love and belief that ii will influence better marketing and better business.
  • Growth - personal and professional as a result of the people I've met.
  • Humility - the responses and feedback from the communities online and offline are energizing while humbling

It's not all about me. It's all about You .. and it's all about Us together.

In May 2006, I launched a special website and called it Blogger Stories. I was fascinated by the way social media was influencing and changing people's lives .. one by one. I wanted to create an environment to tell those stories .. your stories.

There areStories_3 78 stories or chapters that include many business bloggers including Shel Israel. There are also mommy bloggers who helped Katrina Hurricane people, an American poet, authors turned bloggers and bloggers turned authors. There are people from Europe, the Far East, the United States and Canada as well as Australia and New Zealand. Blogger Stories was even highlighted in Bob Walsh's book Clear Blogging.

What makes Blogger Stories unique is that the stories are told by the people in their own words. People who have told their stories include:
    * Alex Genana
    * Allison Gower
    * Andy Hayler
    * Andy Howard
    * Ann Handley
    * Average Jane
    * Beth Kephart
    * BL Ochman
    * Bob Walsh
    * Carol Krishner
    * Chloe Spencer
    * Christelle Alexandre
    * Cooper Munroe
    * David Armano
    * Debbie Weil
    * Deborah Carraro
    * Denise Wakeman and Patsi Krakoff
    * Des Walsh
    * Donna Lyons-Miller
    * Easton Ellsworth
    * Ed Garsten
    * Emily McKahann
    * Geoff Livingston
    * Gil C. Schmidt
    * Holly Buchanan
    * Ilise Benun
    * J. D. Matthews
    * Jack Yan
    * Jane Genova
    * Jayvee Fernandez
    * Jeremy Wright
    * Jody DeVere
    * John Cass
    * Jonathan Danylko
    * Kalyn Denny
    * Katie Delahaye Paine
    * Kim Klaver
    * Kristen Havens
    * Kristie T
    * Lewis Green
    * Lisa Nichols
    * Lois Kelly
    * Lynda Lippin
    * Mack Collier
    * Marianne Richmond
    * Mary Hunt
    * Melissa Fletcher
    * Meryl K. Evans
    * Michele Lessiard
    * Mike & Benjamin Yoskovitz
    * Mike Sansone
    * Mille, My Mom's Blog
    * Monica Ricci
    * Nadia Muna Gil
    * Nedra Weinreich
    * Nettie Hardstock
    * Nichelle Stephens
    * Nick Jacobs
    * Pamela Slim
    * Patricia Skinner
    * Peggy Payne
    * Peter Kim
    * Pinny Gniwisch
    * Richard Edelman
    * Rico Mossegeld
    * Rita Arens
    * Robert Bruce
    * Ruth Daniels
    * Shel Israel
    * Sherry Heyl
    * Stephan Spencer
    * Sybil F. Stershic
    * Tammy Powley
    * Tim Jackson
    * Tris Hussey
    * Valeria Maltoni
    * Wendy Maynard
    * Yvonne DiVita

So .. getting back to Shel's question #4. How has social media changed (or influenced) your life? What is your blogger story? Drop a comment if you want to tell your story. If you know people who have a great story to tell .. please pass along.

She Said. He Said. On Blogger Relations.


1.She_said_he_said She said to me - I don't think we're ready to build those relationships.
2. He said to me - How many of the bloggers will write about our product?
3. She said to me - How many people will read the posts?
4. He said to me - What about if they write negative posts?
5. She said to me - Why should we talk to bloggers when we can take out targeted ads?
6. He said to me - Why can't you guarantee that a percentage will write about our product?
7. She said to me - I want that blog that has a lot of readers.
8. He said to me - I don't have time to post comments.
9. She said to me - Can we track the hits from the blogs that write about our product?
10. He said to me - Here's the press release.
11. She said to me - Our product is important to their readers isn't that enough?
12. He said to me - Our PR media relations strategy isn't this complicated.
13. She said to me - When will they post about our product?
14. He said to me - This may be more risk than we are willing to take. Talk to me Q2 2009.

Reminder To Self - Social media marketing/blogger relations are still new concepts for many; and with that comes a learning curve.

Note To Brand Managers/CMOs - What happens if your competition learns faster than you?



On November 4th, what seemed like the never ending U.S. presidential primary election race (thanks for the catch Edward) will at long last come to the end of its run. Kyle Young, founder of the Atlanta-based social media networking community - Multi-Tasking Women, has launched a non-partisan campaign of her own. Help spread the word .. You Are Never Too Busy Too Vote.

A favorite get out the vote campaign is still the 2006 Do you remember your first time? Women's Voices Women Women Vote

My first time was in a crowded school room near Beacon Street in Boston. Finally I did it. I felt important and so very grown-up.  Growing up in Boston it was something that everyone talked about all the time. Right Polli? Oh, when I finally did it my folks were excited too. As a little girl I remember watching my mom and dad do it and thinking one day I'll get to go behind the curtain. Diva Marketing 2006 post. When was your first time?

If this is your first time or your tenth time .. as Kyle reminds us, "You are never too busy to vote!"

Blog Action Day - Using Social Media To Charge The Conversation


Blog_action_day We talk, some times ad nauseam, about the community of the blogosphere. Well today, October 15, 2008 thousands and thousands of bloggers across the global are joining together to support Blog Action Day - a non-profit event. Blog Action Day was launched last year when two bloggers asked, “What would happen if all the bloggers of the world united for a single cause?”

  • Blog Action Day 2008 focuses on raising awareness and initiating action to combat Poverty.

Act Locally. Think Globally.  Change The Conversation

Blog_for_food_blog Act Locally

Grayson Daughters interviews Bill Bolling, Founder and Exec. Director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank. A few snippets from their inspirational talk. Facebook Blog For Food

Having bloggers and networks is going to make this like nothing we've seen in the past."

We can't say now these are not people like us.

We are all called to do the best of what we have.

Anybody can do something from where they are.

These kinda sessions tells me we're going to use a new technology, a new kind of people ..

Think Globally

Digital Photography School - 17 images of poverty

Twitter Blog Action Day

Fund Raising on Kiva

Change The Conversation

IBMNA post by Easton Ellsworth

12-hour marathon BlogTalk internet radio show - Time: 12p - 12a

Act Locally Think Globally Change The Conversation

Before There Was Social Media There Were Customer Service Reps


”The single most important thing to remember about any enterprise is that there are no results inside its walls. The result of a business is a satisfied customer.” - Peter Drucker

Customer_service_zone350 Girlfriend, bet a dirty martini that you did not know that this is National Customer Service Week. That's nice you might say .. so what does that have to do with marketing or social media marketing. Perhaps customer service was the beginning of  social media. Think about it this way ..  before there was social media as we know it today - where people use technology to build relationships with customers online - there were people (still are of course) whose job it was to build relationships with customers with phone calls, in letters* or face-to face.

Sidebar:  *A letter is a written message from one person to another. Letters, especially a regular exchange between two persons (sometimes called pen pals), represent a kind of humanly communication and mutual friendship. Wikipedia

All too frequently customer service does not get the bright, spot light shined on it except when the customer is really, really, really unhappy. Customer service is just one of those things that you take for granted until you need it. That is the secret .. until you need it. Then when you need it .. PoW .. you want help .. NoW. Some savvy companies understand that customer service begins Before you need it.

With the onset of the internet and more recently social media customers' expectations have been raised to expect service and sensitivity in real time. Kevin O'Keefe, Real Lawyers Have Blogs, created a list of companies using Twitter as a customer service tactic: Zappos, Comcast, Dell, General Motors, H&R Block, Jet Blue, Kodak, Southwest, Whole Foods. I found that Sprint News is using Twitter also.

After reading Kevin's post, just for fun, I did a search on Twitter Search for customer service. I found lots tweets that were specific to companies. HayleyTownley hit a home run with her tweet ~ Why is it that I am shocked when I get good customer service? It should be the opposite. Sad. Very sad and too often true.

In keeping with the philosophy of Becky Carroll, Customers Rock, to show the best of .. and in celebration of Customer Service Week I thought I'd show a few tweets that sang the praises of the companies who are doing customer service right. It took 6 pages plus 1 refresh to find these:

Architek1: @ragedesigngroup customer service by @comcastcares rules.

jmang: Just got off the phone with tmobile. Out of all of the companies I have had to deal with, they have the best customer service by far.

vcope: Dell customer service via Twitter = AWESOME!!! Thanks @ChrisBatDell! :)

AlyssaEK: I give PitchEngine's customer service an A+. Way to effectively use Twitter to interact with users. If only all brands were so effective.

aaswartz: @VPG_printing Thanks for the great customer service and quick rush job for my goods!

Who knew 140 characters could be so powerful?

In this rocky economy when it is critical that every cent invested in your business influences purchase behavior there are three values to keep in mind: product/service value, price value, customer service values.

Read More

Sybil Stershic, Quality Service Marketing, has a great tribute to National Customer Service Week .. including tips on how to celebrate your employees who take care of your customers.

Becky Carroll, Customers Rock, is running a terrific series on using social media for customer loyalty. Part 1, Part 2.

Diva Marketing post - the inspirational story of Johnny the Bagger by Barbara Glanz.

Ten Simple Truths of Service

1. Great Service Inspires Stories/Memories.
Tip: Collect and record customer service stories

2. Great Service Uses Outside-The-Box Thinking
Tip: Encourage and reward creativity and innovation

3. Great Service Is A Choice
Tip: Understand the choices you have to engage with your customers. Teach employees to look for these touch points.

4. Great Service Starts With A Clear Vision

Tip: Management must first have a focused vision and be enthusiastic about the importance of excellent customer service.

5. Great Service Requires That Everyone Catch The Vision
Tip: Ensure that all employees understand and buy-into the vision

6. Great Service Surprises People
Tip: Have fun. If you're having fun at your job it will spill over to other employees and your customers

7. Great Service Begins With Anyone
Tip: Everyone in your organization is responsible for creating Little Acts of Kindness.

8. Great Service Goes The Extra Mile
Tip: Give employees the authority to Serve customers without going through channels

9. Great Service Brings Customers Back
Tip: Benchmark and monitor customer retention statistics

10. Great Customer Service Comes From The Heart
Tip: Manage on both business and human levels

Feds Go A Twitter -ing


Unclesam Question: How do you tell when something is beginning to go main stream?
Answer: Or one answer .. look at the most conservative. For some that might be the federal government.

When it comes to the hot new social media tactic .. micro blogs a la Twitter, it's not a surprise that politicians have been tweeting for months including the presidential candidates. Take a peek at the list that Alexandra Rampy developed. I can't help but wonder what is going on in the other side of those tweets. Are they influencing or making a difference? 

Last Friday I had the honor of chatting with the smart women over at Media BullsEye Roundtable Sarah Wurrey and Jen Zingsheim. Our conversation focused on social media and one topic was .. the P Word and Girlfriend it's not pie but Procrastination. Are blogs, Twitter, social networks a form of procrastination? Might it be a productive form of procrastination .. one where you can learn while playing following the posts or tweets?

My procrastination resulted in this list of 20 Federal Government Tweets for you to explore. I found some to be little more than boring news flashes of data; but a few are rich with personality as well as information. If you need a bit of Monday morning procrastination to jump start your week .. this one is for you!

1. EEOC - Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

2. U.S. Army 


4. USJFCOM - U.S. Joint Force Command

5. Securities and Exchange Commission

6. Homeland Security

7. House Floor - updates from floor of U.S. House of Representatives

8. NSF - National Science Foundation

9. Food Safety Information Center

10. TSA Blog Team

11. Senate Floor - updates from the floor of the Senate

12. OPM - Office of Personal Management

13. Peace Corps

14. Federal Citizen Information Center

National_women_health_info 15. National Women's Health Information Center - the graphic is NWHIC's avatar. Love It!

16. State Department Travel

17. Food Saftey Information Center

18. Official Portal of the U.S. Government in Spanish

19. Office Portal of the U.S. Government

20. National Marine Santuaries

Just for fun .. What is your Twitter Grade? Mine (tobydiva) is 96.9 - Rank #1,145 out of 39,942.

Social Media Change Lessons From Tin Lizzie


Ford_model_t_1923modelt_01 The Ford Model T, fondly known as Tin Lizzie celebrated its or should it be her (?) 100th anniversary yesterday - October 1. Although Tin Lizzie was not the first automobile made .. she was the first Affordable car. What do you give an old girl, who is off the assembly lines, but has impacted the life styles of generations? Perhaps a couple of flirty honks from a whipper snapper hybrid vehicle?

Walking Max yesterday (funny how walking a dog can help with creative ideas) my thoughts turned to what life might have been like for the "regular" people now that Tin Lizzie was on the scene. How did they deal with those initial life style changes?

Imagine for a moment the excitement when the first in the neighborhood parked their very own shiny Model T in front of their home. Now think of the conversations that happened around their neighbors' dinner tables  that night. (Okay .. that one may tax your imagination but do try Girlfriend.) Discussion might have been about budgeting, planning, change in life style and the prestige that a car would bring to the family.

Now think of another family. They have a horse and buggy. Can't imagine life any other way. This new machine, as my grandmother called cars, looked odd. Felt unsafe. They were sure this contraption was a fad. Perhaps they knew that times were changing and life would never be quite the same but wanted to proceed with caution. So they didn't rush out to buy a Model T but closely watched their neighbors and learned from their experiences.

Soon after coming back from my walk with little Maxie I had an interesting conversation with a friend who attended her first social media event. What was her big take away I asked? She spoke about corporation's fears, uncertainties and concerns about how to bring social strategies back to ROI. Her remarks centered on change.

Change. It's such an in word these days that it's almost lost its meaning. But I couldn't help thinking about the Model T.

Social media marketing is more than a different way of reaching out to our customers through new fangled "machines." Social media marketing changes the way we conduct business. There is a ripple effect that must be considered when putting a blog, or Twitter or social network strategy into play. How will it impact the whole enterprise from customer service departments to accounting to marketing?  How will it impact the people in your organization? Change can be great, powerful, wonderful, exciting, innovative. etc., etc., etc.

However, enterprises that are NOT concerned about preparing for internal changes from social media marketing are playing a fool's game.

Social Media Lessons Learned From Tin Lizzie

  1. Talk about it with your colleagues: what are people thinking? what are internal concerns and challenges? who is excited and gets it? where is the cultural disconnect between social media and your company? will culture change?
  2. Take into consideration costing realities: what will you need in terms of budget, time, people?
  3. Plan for change: how will the social media tactics you choose to implement impact specific areas of your enterprise?
  4. Leverage the innovation: how will you leverage that your organization has entered a more customer-focused direction?
  5. Learn from others: how are companies using social media tactics? who is doing it right and who is doing it wrong?
  6. Make it happen: how will you consolidate your internal and external learnings into next steps?