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How Do You Take The "Fear Factor" Out Of Social Media?


You learn more quickly under the guidance of experienced teachers. You waste a lot of time going down alleys if you have no one to lead you. W. Somerset Maugham

Just One Crowd Sourced Question

Crowd source Before there were books or conferences about social media .. before there was Facebook or Twitter people tried to make sense of marketing in a digital world by tapping the experiences of those who were exploring the (then) innovative ideas of blogs and RSS. 

We met in late night Skype chats exchanged emails and posted our thoughts and questions on blogs. We learned from each other. I can not think of a more generous group than those who live in the social media world.

In the spirit of Somerset Maugham, I thought it would be fun to crowd source a series of how do you do it posts. So I did what any good social media marketer might do, I tapped my social networks. 20 Marketers kindly shared their thoughts on the 2nd question in the series: Just 1 Crowd Sourced Question.

The funny thing is we continue to learn from each other within our ever expanding digital worlds. Enjoy!

  • Question: How do you take the "fear factor" out of social media?

First of all, you have to uncover the fear. Is it fear of writing? Many people feel they aren't good enough writers. Is it fear of comments? Is it fear of time? Once you know what the issue is, it's easy to tackle. For writing - a quick demo of the conversational style of blogs and social media works wonders.

If it's the fear of comments - well, why do you fear comments? You can manage them but... teaching people that a complaint is a gift, takes care of that. If it's fear of time, a simple editorial calendar and the understanding that you can prepost everything - even on Twitter, helps people relax. ~ Yvonne DiVita, LipSticking  @lipsticking

Start with talking about objectives first and tools depending on objectives. Emphasize results are measureable and measuremet can be matched to business goals. ~ Shashi Bellamkonda, Network Solutions @shashib

The fear factor in social media stems from not understanding how social media works. Instead of seeing social media as a conversation, it is often views as tools, technology, and broadcasting. To remove the fear factor, it is important to show people that social media is about talking with others, and building relationships through sharing conversation. When the human aspect is considered, rather than the technological aspects, the entire idea of social media becomes a natural part of life. ~ Wayne Hurlbert, Blog Business World  @WayneHurlbert 

We need to remind people that they have a digital footprint regardless of whether they use social media. Choosing not to participate is no guarantee of staying below the radar screen, even if you'd prefer to keep a low profile. ~Bonnie SashinBonnie's On it @bsashin

Educate, inspire, and make it personal. Adding a little fear helps too, by showing what their competitors are doing and showing them what will happen if they keep sticking their heads in the sand. ~ David Berkowitz, Marketer's Studio  @dberkowitz

Oh, please, just dive in! There are, for sure, opportunities to commit faux pas (and plenty of helping hands along the way for quick recovery), and far more to share, connect and become regarded as the expert you are. Fear? Not in this arena!. ~ Lya Sorano The Oliver/Sorano Group

I guess the biggest fear is saying something dumb & then knowing your great great great grandchildren will be able to read it online with all their friends. ~ Anon

I find it's less "fear factor" and more "I know I need to be doing social media, but how? I don't have time for this. Can't you just do it for me?" We're all trying to do more with less and keeping up with social media (being consistent) and learning the fast changing tools are the biggest hurdles.

Assigning dollar values to fans and followers, sharing case studies of success, and showing ROI on campaigns makes it an easy sell. ~ Angie Robar, LinkedIn 

I suppose I should be more afraid. ;-)

Start slow. Listen at first. Test the waters with retweets and/or sharing cool/interesting content (videos, blog posts, news). I post things about Startups, Technology, and stuff that's very personal. I'm posting as me, not as a brand. And I'm trying to live authentically both IRL and online.

As Chief Chick of StartupChicks, I do represent a brand. A brand that I built almost entirely on Social Media. And I do occasionally think twice about what I am personally posting, and if it could possibly look impact that brand. And I have deleted a post for this very reason. But, for the most part, I don't really worry about it. My friends and followers have come to know ME through this platform, and if I don't always say the exact right thing or have a typo... they'll understand. After all, they are my "friends". ~ Jennifer Bonnett,  Chief Chick, StartupChicks @startupchicks  Founder, Nexpense @jen_bonnett 

Find out how they feel about cocktail parties and water coolers and remind them that its really just the same thing. ~ Anon

I blogged about exactly this! ~ Joel Rubinson, Joel Rubinson

I guess the biggest fear is saying something dumb & then knowing your great great great grandchildren will be able to read it online with all their friends.

1. Do your best not to say anything dumb. 
2. Take comfort in the fact that it's unlikely that our great great great grandchildren will know how to read anything longer than "lol". 
3. Dance like nobody's watching. (They're all too busy worrying about how dumb they look.)
~  Tsufit, Author, Step Into The Spotlight! Tsufit

Use email marketing as a point of reference. Every new channel comes with the fear factor, and the best way to control / learn them is to get in the game. Use email marketing as a point of reference. Every new channel comes with the fear factor, and the best way to control / learn them is to get in the game. ~ Anon 

Demystify the barriers to participation, lower the expectations, be crystal on the need for communication,  directmarketingobservations.com ~ Marc Meyer, Direct Marketing Observations  @marc_meyer 

To take the 'fear factor' out of social media, I relate it to a person's own online habits e.g. ever read a review on Amazon? look for a how-to video? conduct a search for a local retailer? etc. Most are engaged in some form of social behavior (online) without even realizing it. ~ J Schmitt @cloudspark

 To overcome this fear, start by working w/ someone experienced in social media who will (patiently) help you get familiar & comfortable with SM as a consumer - i.e., show you blogs, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc., and then help coach you to join in the conversation/community. ~ Sybil Stershic, Quality Service Marketing @sybilqsm

Being true ones purpose of being on line. Passion mission business Act from a place of love not fear. ~ Anon

Like everything, most fear is related to ignorance or a lack of understanding and education. It is about education of social media for those afraid of it. ~ Jim "Genuine" Turner, One By One Media  @Genuine

Just do it. ~ Steve Woodruff, Steve Woodruff @swoodruff

First I acknowledge that the fear can be well based - bad things happen online, as they do offline. Then I provide analogies for what we do offline in fear situations, e.g. have legal advice, get accountant's advice on financial matters, don't go down dark streets in strange cities, or even into dangerous areas in our own cities or at particularly risky times, have good HR policies in place to cover behavior issues.

Then I say it's just another area for risk management for contemporary companies. Then I say there is no shortage of models, templates and expert advice available (e.g. the social media guidelines explicitly available for copying, in Brian Solis' Engage p196ff). It's a bit of an intellectual approach so it is probably not going to help the people who want to luxuriate in their fear and/or often proudly trumpeted ludditism :). ~ Des WalshDes Walsh @deswalsh

Dragon slayer women .. and my thoughts. Before you can conquer any dragon you must first answer two questions. 1. Why are you afraid. 2. What exactly is your dragon?  

Your responses to the first question will lead you into the culture of how your organization currently conducts business. The insights you discover will lead you to a better understanding of not only your marketing/pr/sales/research strategies; as well as your internal employee culture. 

To answer question number two .. well you've taken the first step by reading this post. Learning as much as you can about social media is the secret sauce. Toby Bloomberg, Diva Marketing @divatoby

How do You take the Fear Factor out of social media? Please share your insights and learnings in the comments.

More Just 1 Crowd Sourced Question Posts

How do you put soul into a blog post?

Friday Fun: Marketing Irreverence


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.

Recently, Fard Johmar, Path of the Blue Eye, told me he liked the sometimes quirkiness of Diva Marketing and the dash of irreverence and fun -- especially on Fridays. Since life is too serious these days .. Friday Fun is back .. at least more often than not. 

For today's Friday Fun, let's take a look as some slightly different, slightly off the wall marketing, customer loyalty (sort of..maybe..we'll see) campaigns and an in your face ad site. 

Do the airline over-booked bump! Cha Cha Cha. Delta Airlines, my home town airline, has a new approach towards appeasing customers if their flight has been over booked. No more first to run up to the gate agent with a bag full of Dunkies or Krispy Kremes donuts wins.

Nope, when passengers electronically check in they can join an auction. People indicate how much money they'd be willing to accept to change flights. Delta, of course, will choose the lowest bidder. Question: what's the value of a "free"airline ticket and more time spent at the airport? By the way, don't bother searching details on delta.com .. no where to be found.  WSJ

Your ad will change the world .. not! It's rare to find an ad copywriter who isn't in love with his own words. Rarer to find a creative director who doesn't totally believe her concept will win the next Addy, create world peace and get Jimmy Choo to name a shoe after her. 

Things Real People Don't Say About Advertising is a cool site that looks at the ad game with humor and reminds us not to take it too seriously. Here's my fav!  Advertising what people dont day Toss of a pink diva boa to BL Ochman for link to the site.




Here I come .. ready or not! Winter + Films + Boots = Fun & Games! Seems to me that as we "mature" we often loose the sense of play. Perhaps that's why marketers turn to fun & games as a means to differentiate. The scavenger hunt, a game that is centuries old, is a favorite to morph into a experience brand campaign.

The lastest scavenger hunt is sponsored by Sorel, a company known for its beautiful boots that "take care of you." I rather like that tag line.   

Sorel logo The 2011 spin that Sorel created includes a virtual scavenger hunt through augment reality. It's complete with the social and tech stuff like QR codes and Facebook .. of course. The coolest part is the venue .. the Sundance Film Festival. Players will look for the logo bears all over the city. Maybe a photo of Robert Redford will earn extra points! 

For Sundance fans .. here's an app for you!

Sidebar: Why oh why don't brands include their cool social media campaigns on their websites? Home page presence above the fold would be a very good thing.

On Being A "Pro Blogger" -- Interview With Jane Genova


Pro blogger search 353,000 in 31 seconds. That's what was returned on a Google search for "pro blogger jobs."

When I launched Diva Marketing in 2004, professional blogging meant a few Google Ad Sense Ads on a site or perhaps a "tip jar." Does any one do tip jars any more?  

Soon blog ad networks became the rage offering bloggers and advertising more control and greater targeting. It seemed logical that if one blog could make some money than a network of blogs on diverse topics could make even more.

When Nick Denton sold Gawker Media for oodles of $$ the race was on for the next Blog Network. Enter stage right B5Media created by three successful bloggers Jeremy Wright, Darren Rowse and Duncan Riley. And the beat goes on .. 

Jane genova Earning a few sheckles from your blog has turned into The Brass Ring for many people. My friend Jane 
Genova agreed to open the kimono a bit and share her experiences on what it's like to be a problogger for a big brand

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: Welcome! to Diva Marketing Jane. Will you please tell us a little about your blogging and social media background?

Jane Genova: I've founded and operate four syndicated blogs Jane Genova, Career TransitionsOver-50 and Law And More.  The latter is housed in the Library of Congress. I also have been an unpaid guest blogger for Pointoflaw.com and a site for Harvard Law School.

 In addition, I've worked as a paid blogger in diverse settings ranging from ghostwriting content on attorney blogs to producing bylined content for brandname players in social media. 

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: There are several opportunities to make money from social media and blogging, from sponsorships and ads on your site to being paid to produce content for other blogs. Why did you choose to go the "pro blogger" route?

Jane Genova: A year ago. I toyed with the idea of selling ads on my blogs but knew I could lose my freedom of expression.  Blogging is how I attract new business for my boutique Genova Writing, Coaching, and More. And it’s my unique voice on those blogs which attracts buyers’s attention.  But, more importantly at least for me, it’s how I keep myself centered. No matter what has come down, if I start blogging I enter that state of “flow” or “being in the zone.”  One might say, I am lifted out of myself into the process.

 Since revenue wasn’t going to come directly from my own blogging, I put myself out there as a ghost blogger and a bylined one for that digital shops that produce tons of content.

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: What about the ghosting part? It's something that can be quite controversial.

Jane Genova: There is a learning curve.  I hope your readers learn faster than I did.

 Much of it turns out to be a loss leader. You enter the relationship with promises from the buyer that on this platform there will be many other promotional activities.  Eventually I could smell that kind of come-on and didn’t bite.  Recently, I forgot my sunk costs and nicely informed those I was ghosting for that I could no longer be available.  They probably wondered why I was dumb enough to hang in so long.

Then there is the strategic planning and creating content for clients that pay well.  I have developed a knack for selling myself to them.  Recently I agreed to work for a startup whose owners had two previous successes.  They knew what they were doing and had money.  The relationship is on a confidential basis.  That’s key to them because they want the digital content to represent their voice.  Incidentally, Toby, just tonight, I signed such a confidentiality agreement with a midsized organization for blogs, Facebook content, tweets, and scripts for training videos to download on YouTube. 

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: What can you tell us about behind the scenes of being a $ professional blogger for big brandname sites where your byline was on each and every post? 

Jane Genova: That’s a world very much like television.  The numbers are everything. Every hour many different categories of numbers are tracked.  Those include page views, comments, links from outside, and how the percentage of those compare to your earlier numbers.  In addition, daily reports for the whole team are issued as well as weekly reports.

So, the tone, content, and volume of what you produce must be determined by what has been shown to bring in page views and comments.  The links are less important.  

There’s more. The challenge is that, as Shakespeare observed, the crowd is fickle.  What sells today might not even attract one page view the next day. 

Needless to say, the pressure is enormous.  Also, I wonder if anyone in that niche is secure enough not to be filled with self-doubt when the numbers are low.  The numbers might stay low for a few days.

But, those like myself hang in, at least for a while, because of the heady experience of witnessing your post, with your byline, receiving about 200,000 page views and 100s of comments. You also receive lots of emails from readers. 

Then, at least for me, comes the time when that experience is all-consuming.  I found myself investing less energy in the parts of my communications work which brought in the most income.  Also, I had difficulty sleeping and was over-eating.

Here’s an analogy.  You know how those in the finance industry compulsively watch those numbers?  I got to be the same way.  The difference is that those in finance might make billions on the movement of the numbers.  My compensation was, relatively speaking, peanuts.  Yet, that was my world.  It happens, Toby.  This could be a novel by Stephen King.

One major brandname site and I parted company.  I won’t go into details.

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: Eeek! Sounds like a relationship that was not made in blog heaven. Would you ever consider a paid byline blogger gig with another big brandname site?

Only on a one-shot basis.  Once you become part of the “team,” even as a contract blogger, the force field takes over.  I was sucked in.  That kind of experience is worth getting, once.  If you’re made of sturdy emotional stuff, maybe twice. After that, the shrewd blogger leverages the knowledge gained to obtain assignments in a more staid environment.

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: Even though your experience with the big brand was, shall we say, far from optimal, would you encourage bloggers to pursue that direction?

Jane Genova: Yes. The experience is extraordinary. You are part of something lots of people pay attention to. 

The trick is to monitor yourself about how much you can handle and for how long.  Also, along the way, keep the doors open for other kinds of jobs and freelance assignments. 

Some readers might thrive in that environment and stay for a long while. 

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: Do you think pro blogging can be a "career?"

Jane Genova: No question, blogging is important in getting yourself out there.  But the odds are against making money directly from that blog you operate. 

What I have found the most effective way to make money is to position yourself as a service provider to financially solvent organizations which need social media, either the strategic planning or the content or both.  Individuals usually don’t have the budget.  You must screen prospects carefully.  Frequently they have hired a web company to guide them and are getting bad advice.  Don’t get in the middle of it.

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: What’s next for Jane Genova in the world of blogging and social media?

Toby, the economy is recovering. Communications niches which had dried up are coming back to life.  Take for example, speechwriting. In the past few weeks, I received two assignments in that relatively lucrative line of work. 

So, what’s next is again developing new business in niches which pay well, or at least more than social media. 

Here there is general principle: More and more of us will earn our living from multiple sources of income. I feel it was naïve on my part to focus so much of my marketing on social media. 

Toby ~ Diva Marketing: As we wrap it up, any last thought you'd like to tell the Diva Marketing community?

Getting work, any kind in any form be it a job or assignments, in this volatile economy is a hail mary pass.  Don’t plan too carefully to go after A, B, and C markets for X, Y, Z kinds of work.  Rather test out where you might be marketable.  Most opportunity has fallen into my lap.  I applied for this and that as an experiment.  I got the assignments and I could do them.

Planning is totally 20th century.  You might read my book on that “Over-50: How We Keep Working.”  Although it’s targeted for aging Baby Boomers the principles apply to all generations.  You can purchase it online.

Sidebar: If you're interested in monetizing your blog or pro blogging as a source of income Darren Rowe's ProBlogger site should be your first stop.

Building Social Media Business Relationships With The Mundane


Twitter_no wall snips
What does watching football games, a fractured foot, a party gal, a nap, late night lattes, a hotel PA system and eating cheescake have in common? Twitter tweets of course.

Girlfriend, now you might be saying, "Toby, I rest my case. That's exactly why I would never think of tweeting for business. Who cares if I'm eating cheesecake or staying at a hotel with an annoying PA system?" 

  • Social media does not have walls. Hold that thought.

For my 2 cents, the special sauce of social media, and now social networks, is the opportunity to build and sustain relationships. From a business perspective that usually means customers/clients, prospects, colleagues, vendors, the media, analysts and shareholders. Did I miss anyone? Oh yes, the gate keepers! Lots of people who have hugely diverse interests. 

I spend a lot of time trying to make sense of how do you build business relationship in today's digital world. One day, it occurred to me ..

  • Social media does not have walls. Hold that thought.

This quote from Keith Ferrazzi, author of Never Eat Alone, sheds some light and understanding on what makes a business relationship either online or offline.

"Everything that you want to achieve in life is with and through other people. Making friends with people you meet is the first step toward getting what you want and you do that by getting to know everyone on a personal level—even business contacts.

There is no such thing as a business relationship—there are only personal relationships in a business context that you are fearful of creating a personal relationship with."

Well .. I'm not so sure about the fear factor, though it certainly can be an issue. However, getting to know people on a personal level resonates with me. It also reinforces my concept of the Corner Grocery Store Relationship where the shop keeper didn't just know her customers by name but was an integrated part of the larger community.

Hang with me a bit more. 

If we were doing business together and I met you in your office, or even at your favorite coffee shop, there would be visual clues that would provide insights into your world .. personal and/or business. Those visual clues would give me the opportunity to find common ground that goes beyond my product or service.  If I were savvy (and of course I am!) I would use those clues to share with you how we are more alike than different. At the end of the day, all things being equal (more or less) people like to do business with people they know and like.

A couple of examples:

My friend and colleague Merrill Dubrow, CEO of M/A/R/C, has a huge Red Sox banner on his office wall. Wicked cool .. a Boston and baseball connection.

Photos of your family vacationing on the beach might lead to a sidebar conversation about our mutual love of the ocean. Perhaps I'd tell you about my family time at my cousin's home in Hull.

We're enjoying a cup of java at your local coffee shop. You take out your iPhone to take notes. Why, I have an iPhone too. We talk about our favorite apps. 

Back to the idea of social media does not have walls.(Finally!) In the  digital world there are no walls or cues. While we might begin our online relationship because I find the information you post is helpful to me, I still don't know who you are as a "real person."  

However, if among the value added content that you share with me in your Tweets, blog posts, LinkedIn messages, Facebook updates, or where ever we hang out together, once in awhile you drop something you are providing "cues" that help build our relationship. 

10 Tips To Decorate Your Social Media Walls

1. How personal is personal? - How much of "you" should you include in let's call them "coffee tweets" depends on a two factors: your comfort level and the culture of your organization. While some people maybe okay with chatting about their new bebe other people may be concerned with a safely factor. 

2. Pets can add that fun dimension. The Diva Marketing community knows I often include my dog Max in posts. The first time I met someone at a conference, who asked not about me but about Max, I knew there was a relationship brewing.  Max dec 07_1

3.Travel both for business and pleasure can not only give you interesting content. How about a post about a great meal and excellent service or a tweet about the TSA .. er that might be a different blog. 


4. A tweet or Facebook update while you're watching the Super Bowl. 

5. The weather. What you're doing during the snow storm or how you're spending the 1st day of spring.

6. Your latest venture into the kitchen along with a photo of those yummy cookies or cake disaster.

7. Your tennis team's ranking. 

8. Kids do say and do the funniest things. If you're comfortable sharing in pubic think capturing it on video.

9. What you're doing for your coffee break or lunch hour. I don't mind a few of those either. I just might be inspired to have a bagel instead of a muffin. 

10. What are your suggestions?

When asked about Twitter's vision, CEO Dick Costolo said, "Twitter is about connecting for a purpose, not just connecting." If you're purpose in using social media is for marketing or business, a little of the mundane can help bring the humanity to relationships. 

 Sidebar: Tweets borrowed from @thomsfrey @urvkish @banteringblonde @shbbll @designsponge @michaelhyatt @shellykramer

How Do You Put "Soul" Into A Blog Post?


Crowd source When it comes to learning about how to succeed in social media, one of the most valuable type of posts is the multiple insights shared by people who are in the trenches.

I thought it might be interesting and fun to crowd source a series based on just 1 question. So I did what any good social media marketer might do, I tapped my social networks. 19 Marketers kindly shared their thoughts on the 1st question .. 

  • Question: How do you put "soul" into a blog post?

Never lose your sense of humor. We're marketers, not pediatric brain surgeons. A lot of the time a funny photo or drawing can add a little levity to an otherwise serious topic.~ B.L. Ochman What's Next Blog @whatsnext

 Realize that we all have both personal lives and professional lives. Use that knowledge to bring the passions of your life into your work-related blog. For example, I'm a huge music fan and frequently write about music in my "work" blog. What are you passionate about? Use that as fodder for blog posts with soul.~ David Meerman Scott WebInKnow @dmscott

Be yourself. If you're snarky, be snarky. Compassionate, be compassionate. Funny, be funny. Don't try to be something you're not or the world will know in just a few tweets.~ Susan Cartier Liebel Solo Practice University @scartierliebel 

Robert Frost said, "No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader." While writing the initial draft of a blog post, then, allow your ideas to get away from you and surprise you.

Push yourself to think about unexplored parts of the story. Write about images that appear to you for reasons you can't explain, and then try to explain them. Explore and experiment and have fun, before you bring you bring in the internal editor to smooth things out. ~ Mark Levy Levy Innovation @levyinnovation

Be frank about what you don't know and don't understand ~ Des Walsh DesWalsh @deswalsh

My tip is a quote borrowed from a billiard's player I once knew. He said, "Study long, study wrong." While things can't be quite as extemporaneous these days, I still feel that being too cerebral with a post is a way to suck the life out of it.

In other words, some of the most soulful posts are those written without too much editing or over-thinking.I used to say blogging was a "shoot from the hip, speak from the heart" style of writing. ~ Paul Chaney  My Amplify @pchaney

Bring your personality and opinion to the table.. you can have marketing goals, but people don't want to hear marketing speak. They want to hear  you speak about what you think about ideas and opinions of the day. ~ John Cass @JohnCass PR Communications

Rather than reporting or writing about a topic , write how you "feel" about a topic. Speaking from your heart brings out your passion and helps you connect and resonate with readers better. ~ Jody DeVere Ask Patty @askpatty

Isn't the answer in the question maybe? Bare your soul... or at least be transparent and passionate in what you write. ~ Marianne Richmond Resonance Partnership @marianne

Be present without pretense. Call it soul, authenticity, your voice, your thing, your mojo - it doesn't matter. What matters is you've got to own it and to do that you have to know yourself.

Take some time to reflecton who you are, what you care about, what revs your motor and why. Get to know your inner compass and you'll begin to feel it when you're getting off the path, when you're overworking it, phoning it in, or just being "on message" without meaning. 

Be sensitive to the idea that everything you write about has a common denominator: you! So don't be afraid to be present in the process. ~ David S. Cohen Equation Arts @davidscohen

I think soul means heart and depth. To bring that soulfulness to your blog it  needs to occasionally be personal. Not the every day experience level of personal, but that story that gives you pause. Was it embarrassing? In hindsight is the answer clear? Should you share *that*? If it could be of value to even one person, then yes.  ~ Katie Bromley @KatieRBromley

Write what you are passionate about. ~ @AYPcom

Stick with what fuels your passion and let that enthusiasm shine through in all that you write.~Teresa Caro @TeresaCaro

Don't try to create an overly authoritative voice - be yourself and write as you wouldspeak to a friend. The best blog posts make me feel like I just had an intelligent conversation with a friend. The ones who are haughty and lofty in tone lose me within the first few sentences.~ Amanda Thompson Dachis Group  Travel Blog @mercerthompson

I add soul by being honest. Honesty doesn't mean being snarky, which seems to be a trend these days. Honesty is about giving people an insight or an "insider's perspective" that they can't get by reading the WSJ, the Times,ADWEEK, MEDIAWEEK or any other traditional publication. ~ Jamie Turner 60SecondMarketer @60SecondTweets

Write in your own voice and let your own personality shine through. ~ David Reich Reich Communication @davidreich

Keep in mind every post might be the first post someone reads so make it amazing - Rob Petersen Barn Raisers @robpetersen

One infallible way to add "soul" to your blog is to have a humorous or non-traditional About or Biography page.  Some people use a page that includes a list such as "10 things about me" or "7 things you may be surprised to know about me" or something along those lines. 

Other people write a humorous biography.  Still others write a very personal story about why or how they started the blog.  Whatever it is, be sure to include something about YOU -- your passions, your values, your beliefs, your hobbies, your family, even your favorite foods or your dislikes.  Share a little about YOU and it will make your blog memorable. ~ Anita Campbell Small Business Trends @Smallbiztrends

Let your passion shine through to distinguish your point of view. Like-minded individuals will be attracted to your honesty.  Let your voice be heard and don't forget the funk (aka, spirit and wit). ~ Terry Starr Dice @dicerecruiting @dicenews

Make each story or post you write unique to you using active verbs and capturing your curiosity and passion for the subject.

In college, I took a modern dance class that based on piece on Tennyson's The Eagle. I'll have to demonstrate it for you. The last part of the poem and dance capture what needs to happen for a blog post or any performance for that matter to have 'soul.' Thanks for the question. As usual, you got me thinking. ~ CB Whittemore Simple Marketing @cbhwhittemore

He clasps the crag with crooked hands;

Close to the sun in lonely lands, Ringed with the azure world, he stands.

The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls; He watches from his mountain walls,

And like a thunderbolt he falls. ~ The Eagle by Tennyson

.. and my thoughts: Putting "soul" into your blog posts is like playing jazz. Once you understand the basic notes, step out of your comfort zone and explore something new with your community. Play the tune together where you share another side of what makes you .. you. ~ Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing @tobydiva Jelly's last jam

Let's keep the conversation going .. How would do you put "soul" into your blog posts?

2011 A Year Of Possibilities


  • Courage is the power to let go of the familiar. ~ Raymond Lindquist

What is it about saying goodbye to the old year and welcoming a new one? It's not as though the time blocks on your calendar are blank waiting to be filled. I'm betting meetings, conference calls, coffee chats, lunches and trips were booked months ago.

Before there was Facebook or Twitter or YouTube videos there was the new years eve "community." On December 31st it seems like the entire world comes together to celebrate. And although we may have our own unique hopes, for a few moments we dream together. 

That spirit is what the creators of social networks and online communities strive to achieve. The next social media campaign you create keep in mind that real success is in the magic of people coming together. How you make that happen is never from putting the "messaging first." Sometimes it takes looking through a new lens .. letting go of what you've done before.

Champange bottle On this 1st day of 2011, I'd like to offer a toast to the possibilities of the new year!