Social Media "Pioneers" Tell Why

08/01/2013

We came, we saw, we kicked its ass. ~ Ghostbusters

Crowd sourceJust One Crowd Sources Question

Recently many of my social media conversations seemed to be about the perception that social is a young person’s game. Perhaps that’s true to an extent as the Pew 2012 Demographic report indicates.

However, many of the people who began exploring social media 7, 8, 9, 10, 12 years ago were 30+ when they/we started working in this industry. At the time we stepped into what was fondly called, The Blogosphere, it was an unproven direction to take business communications.

In fact, some companies thought we were a bit crazed to encourage brands to embrace concepts like transparency, authenticity, honesty and the most radical of all … customer-to-brand, peer-to-peer conversations in public forums.

I was curious to understand why the people, who I think of as the "real people" pioneers of social media, took a leap of faith to work in a field that skeptics and pundits said was just a fad. So I reached out to a few folks from across the globe to discover their reasons for Why.

Some of the Whys

Business Applications - Several people saw blogs in a purely business context --a competitive advantage, opportunity to speak directly to customers and stakeholders, new avenue to expand networks and connect with industy thought leaders, easy way to share (business) information, 

New Challenge - Other people liked the challenge of something new and wanted to experiment.  Some realized that blogs could shape opinons beyond the influence and gatekeeping of traditional media .. they saw blogs as way to empower people.

Personal Expression - Others wanted to share not only information but their opinons. For other the satisfaction of personal expression influenced them to explore blogs. 

Anita Campbell, Small Biz Trends - To set my business apart and gain national visibility. Blogs were the ticket to that.

Neville Hobson, Communication Consultant - Partly for that very reason: unproven, often risky! Mostly, though, to try and figure out what blogs were and what they could do in business. Today social media is pervasive and mainstream awareness is very high.

It's a double-edged sword in business, requiring deeper understanding of and sensitivity to people's changing behaviours and the complexities of those changing behaviours in a workplace setting. A constant learning experience.

Nettie Renyolds, Nettie Ink  - I was totally enthralled with how the new communication tools were going to educate and empower people online. I was also writing the Professional PR blog for Allbusiness.com. I was so  blessed to get to try out these tools even in infancy.

If anyone who is under 30 and working in social media believes that everything they are using now will apply in the same efficacy as it does in the next 24 months -they are misguided.

These tools are ever-changing so every tool and every piece of communication must first establish context and then the best tool to use is secondary. Also - keep your website as your central anchor!

Elisa Camahort Page, BlogHer - I started as a personal blog. I reviewed movies, theatre, books, and restaurants, among other personal observations.

Once I shared a restaurant review with some colleagues and saw that review spread across my network and encourage dozens of people to try that restaurant I had what I call my "peanut butter chocolate" moment about how blogging and online community was a natural communications and marketing channel.

I really thought the ability to speak directly to your customers, readers, audience, etc. was an opportunity that organizations should not pass up. And even my early experiments in marketing via the social web channels that existed at the time (pre-Facebook, pre-Twiiter, etc.) showed immediate and quantifiable promise. Some-ppl-are-old-at-18-and-young-at-90_by-DustBurst_via-groovypinkblog-300x224

Rajesh Lalwani, Blogworks - As a student and practitioner of public relations and communication, I saw the emergent change where organizations and stakeholders could engage directly; where the role of shaping opinion and influencing purchase would no longer be limited to mainstream media, but everyone; the changed dynamics of a world where news would be disseminated first by people on the street.

I could see it clearly that this will change how communication, reputation, marketing, customer service, research, content had worked thus far. I felt this was my opportunity to participate in the future of everything brand and I jumped in. I didn't think this was risky. I was clear, this would be mainstream

Merrill DuBrow, M/A/R/C Research Someone very smart (you - Ms Bloomberg convinced me to blog - said it is critical to buisness and yes you were right.

Yvonne DiVita, BlogPaws, Lipsticking  - I joined in 2004 and it gave me immediate results. I was connected to people in the business world that I would never have known about, before using a blog.

I started blogging because my partner had learned about blogging in his college course (adult learning) and thought it was a fantastic tool to connect people from all over the world. And, he was right. It connected me to dozens of people in the marketing world I was just then venturing to enter.

I think the younger folks can learn a lot from us 'old timers' - including how to bring tried and true business practices to a social media world. And, we can learn a lot from them - such as learning how to apply some of the new tools being invented. This shouldn't be a "them" or "us" kind of thing.

It should be an open conversation about life. Isn't that what blogs and social media are all about? And, isn't that how you build connections?

David Berkowitz, MRY - I got into digital media because I wanted to write and not be a journalist in any traditional sense. Before I was blogging in 2004, I was already writing a lot for eMarketer (my full-time job), and then started contributing to MediaPost.

Blogging was a natural extension, especially when I decided to focus more on establishing my own voice through my blog. After the fact, I came to appreciate the community of bloggers that I was part of just by blogging.

B.L. Ochman, Whats Next - I had been publishing a print newsletter called What's Next and then moved it online to my website as a weekly. When it became possible to switch to a blog, I didn't hesitate for a second.

Started in 2002, and only took that long to blog because it took me a long time to find a designer who could create it to have the same design as my website. I wanted a graphic identity for my content.

Paul Chaney, Chaney Marketing Group - It was an outlet for personal expression, and a way to scratch my writing itch. My first posts didn't have to do as much with business, but that's the direction it turned pretty quickly.

Brendan Hurley, Goodwill of Greater Washington  - When we launched our social media/blogging initiatives in 2007, research data supported the fact that at the time it was a medium dominated by a younger audience, and that's who we were trying to reach and influence.

Our adoption was purely a strategic business decision. However, we didn't go about it without some due diligence. We consulted with Geoff Livingston, a well-respected social media expert, who helped us develop a comprehensive and integrated approach.

Social media is a powerful tool and has become a critical and growing component of our overall marketing strategy. But in most cases, I still recommend taking an integrated approach. Even Zappos is using TV...

Brent Leary, CRM Essentails - Just was looking to share my thoughts and experiences in the CRM industry.

C.B. Whittemore - Opportunity to experiment and explore firsthand with online tools when every sign I came across said that marketing and business would head that way. I could do it on my time, at minimal cost other than my time. Plus, the more I got involved, the more cool smart people I came across - with Diva Toby being one of the very coolest. 

Barb Giamanco - My background is in technology, so I saw these tools as the next evolution of technology to support business processes.

It isn't about age. It is about attitude. Social media isn't a young person's game - whatever that's supposed to mean, and I think that the people who say that are using it as an excuse not to learn new skills.

These new technologies and approaches impact business in the same way that fax machines changed up business. So did being required to know word processing or how to use presentation software. People resisted computers.

They said we'd never do business using email. They also said that people wouldn't purchase products over the web and that mobile phones wouldn't be a big deal. THEY were wrong and still are if they think that social media is a fad.

Kevin O'Keefe, Lexblog - To help people, specifically to help lawyers understand how to use the Internet in a way that could enhance their reputations as a trusted and reliable authorities.

Marianne Richmond - At first it just seemed so incredible to be able to connect directly online with thought leaders, true experts and people working in same business. Then the light bulb went off that businesses could connect directly with consumers and vice versa.

Drew McLelllan, McLellan Marketing Group - I was curious -- and it seemed like the right time to jump in. It was new, everyone was making mistakes so I was free to experiment and explore, knowing that others would be forgiving if I wasn't perfect at it.

There was also a professional necessity. I own an agency and knew our clients would be need to consider social media as an option. I couldn't counsel them if I wasn't fluent myself. Rather than read about it or watch it, I jumped into the deep end, launching a blog and creating a profile on all of the major platforms of the day.

Des Walsh, Business Coach - In 2003, there was a convergence of my enthusisam for networking, my keen interest in communication technology (for communication's sake, not so much for the technology itself) and my then new involvement in coaching.

At a coaching conference in San Francisco early 2003 a session "become an e-celebrity through blogging" opened my eyes to blogging as a way to promote my coaching business beyond my relatively limited circle in Sydney, Australia. As I went on I learned more about blogging and became an evangelist for business blogging.

Too many mature age people see bloggng and social media as being about technology. For me it is about people and communication. My life has been immeasurably enriched through the friendships I have made worldwide through social media and my business has benefited continually from my engagement with and knowledge of social media

Sybil Stersjic, Quality Service Marketing - I developed my business blog to share and further develop my professional passion for employee-customer care. My blog also gave me a web presence since I did not have a website at the time.

Jane Genova, Executive and Marketing Pro - It got me into the "conversation" without having to be admitted by the gatekeepers (editors) in media. I had a hunch that there were others like myself who wanted to be in and be able to bypass the gatekeepers. Stay with what's working. Be aware how your medium is changing. Change with it.

Shel Israel, Author -  Are you aware that I spent about six months in 2011 writing a book called Pioneers of Social Media? It never found a publisher, nor did I sense a groundswell of interest that would have made me willing to take the risk to self-publish. 

Anyway, many of the pioneers are my age, we are 60s kids who believed in power to the people and transparency and lots of sex. Some of them, A few include Howard Rheingold, host the The Well, first online community; Randy Farmer, co-developer of Habitat, first use of avatars, so that you could have an online presence, Dave Winer, father of the blog, RSS and more, are all from the 60s. Each had an interest in using technology to empwer people through networking.

I am not a pioneer of social media. I'm more like a witness. I was in the right place at the right time to see the revolutionary aspects that social media promised. These people were talking about improving the structure of a global society. I doubt that any of them ever envisioned cute cat photos.

I remain, a camp joiner more than a pioneer. I like to write about people who see how technology makes life, work, health, learning, entertainment and communications better.

The technology of the pioneers has done much to change the world. But I'm not sure the current trends are what they had in mind. It's pretty much like when television came in in the 1950s and NBC's Sarnoff dreamed of opera for the masses. Around the corner, Bill Paley, was formed CBS. He looked at Sarnoff and said "screw that shit. We'll give them I love Lucy and sell cigarettes. Guess who won?

~ and me. I launched Diva Marketing in 2004, because my friend Dana Van Den Heuvel told me I had no credibilty talking about blogs, in training programs, unless I was actively involved. Diva Marketing was to be a way for me to learn. I had no intention of keeping it going for more than a few months.

Almost as soon as I wrote my first post people reached out to welcome me to the blogosphere. I  quickly realized this wasa far different world than websites The potential to build and nuture relationships and talk directly to customers in this funny thing called "comments" was the missing link of the business internet. So I stayed .. and as they say, the rest is history.

Update

Beth Harte - I jumped into corporate social media in 2006 (it wasn't even a term then). I saw it more of an extension of PR than marketing. It was a tough sell back then.

Pink boaToss of a boa to these amazing people who were among the first to set the wheels in montion for an exciting new way to bring brands, employees and customer together. 

Anita Campbell - Small Biz Trends @Small Biz Trends Began blogging 2003 (USA)

Barbara Giamanco - @BarbaraGiamanco Linkedin  Began blogging 2004 (USA)

Beth Harte - The Harte of Marketing @BethHarte Began blogging 2006 (USA)

B.L. Ochman Whats Next Blog Pawfun Blog  @WhatsNext Google+ Y2006 (USA)ouTube Whats Next Blog  YouTube Beyond Social Media Beganblogging 1996 (USA)

Brent Leary - Brent Leary.com @BrentLeary Began blogging 2004 (USA)

C. B. Whittemore - Simple Marketing Now  Simply Marketing Now Blog @CBWhittemore Began blogging 2006 (USA)

David Berkowitz - Marketers Studio Blog About David Berkowitz @DBerkowitz @MRY Began blogging 2004  (USA)

Des Walsh - DesWalsh.com  @DesWalsh Began blogging 2003 (Australia)

Drew McLellan - Drew's Marketing Minute @DrewMcLellan Began blogging 1999 (USA)

Elisa Camahort Page - BlogHer G@ElisaC Began blogging 2003 (USA)

Jane Genova - JaneGenova.com Law and More Over 50 Began blogging 2005 (USA)

Kevin O’Keefe - LexBlog  @KevinOKeefe  Began blogging 1996 (USA)

Merril Dubrow - The Merrill Dubrow Blog  @MerrillDubrow Began blogging 2006 (USA)

Marianne Richmond - Resonance Parntership @Marianne Began blogging 2005 (USA)

Nettie Reynolds - Nettie Ink LinkedIn  @NetReynolds (1999) (USA)

Neville Hobson - Neville Hobson.com @jangles  Began blogging 2002(UK) 

Paul Chaney - Chaney Marketing Group @PChaney Began blogging 2004 (USA)

Rajesh Lalwani - BlogWorks @RajeshLawlani  Began blogging 2005 (India)

Shel Israel - Shel Israel on Forbes Facebook LinkedIn @ShelIsraelegan blogging 2005 (USA)

Sybil F. Stershic - Qualty Service Marketing Quality Service Marketing @SybilQSM Linkedin LinkedIn (USA)

Toby Bloomberg - Diva Marketing Blog Pinterest Bio Board  @Tobydiva Began blogging 2004 (USA)

Yvonne DiVita - Lipsticking @lipsticking BlogPaws @Blogpaws Began blogging 2004 (USA)

Just One Crowd Sourced Question is an on-going series that taps the knowledge, experience and yes opinons of people who believe that one of the core values of social media culture is learning together.

Women + Social Media = ?

11/30/2011

Quick. What comes to mind when you read these words? Women. Social Media.

Girls with computerMy reactions: Women help and connect to each other by sharing their experiences; results are influencing brand perceptions and purchase behavior. 

But then I'm a marketer so my response is skewed towards business .. well .. a little shopping too ;-) 

Curious to what other people would say, I posted the question to my social networks, including the Atlanta Women in Social Media group.

Answers fell into 5 buckets:

1. Women focused in general

2. Women are naturally better communicators

3. Women don't think of social media as an 'obligation' 

4. Women build on relationship skills

5. The number of women speakers on soical media is disporportionate to that of men 

Women social media _Twitter Atlanta women in social media _2

My favorite was from Des Walsh .. 

G Des women social media

On the MSN Business On Main community for small businesses, Joanna Krutz has put together a comprehensive post that is packed with facts and figures about selling to women in the digital world and how women are using social media. 

Did you know .. women use their phones to “tweet” and “friend” 10% more often than the dudes?

Did you know .. women average about 30% more sent and received texts/month than guys? - Source: Nielsen 2010 data Worldwide

Did you know .. women are on social networks an average of  5.5 hours/month while the men are on about 4 hours?- Source: ComScore

So now that you know .. whatcha gonna do about it?

MSN Business On Main/Diva Marketing Small Business Tip Contest ~ 

~ Win $100!

Share 1 idea on how a company/brand can use social media to connect with women. 

The idea that Max, I and Yvonne DiVita, our very special guest judge, choose will win 100 dollars! Just in time for your holiday shopping. 

Yvonne DiVitaWhen I think of marketing to women, top of mind is the amazing Yvonne DiVita. Yvonne is the founder of LipSticking one of the first blogs that championed women in business. Among her accolades Lipsticking was acknowledged by Forrbes as one of the best blogs on marketing and social media written by a women.  

Pets are a passion too. Yvonne launched the first pet blogger conference BlogPaws. BlogPaws is supported by a very active community. 

Recently I had the honor of interviewing Yvonne for All The SIngle Girlfriends' series Girlfriends Helping Girlfriends where she shared some of her behind the scene story. Connect with Yvonne on Twitter, Facebook and of course the Lipsticking Blog and BlogPaws.

Rules of MSN The Business on Main/Diva Marketing Social Media Small Business Tips Contest 

1. Post your tip for how to use social media for branding on this Diva Marketing post And on this MSN Business On Main Post. If you don't post on MSN BOM and indicate Diva Marketing you cannot qualify for the $100 prize. 

2. Identify your post on Business On Main with the words Diva Marketing

3. Winner is at the pleasure of Diva Marketing

4. Contest ends midnight Friday December 16, 2011.

5. You must be at least 18 years of age

6. A valid eMail address must be included on the "Post a Comment Section" of your Diva Marketing comment. (How will I know where to contact you to send your check?)

That's it .. now it's your turn! Wouldn't $100 extra be nice this time of year?

Update: and our winner is .. Molly Carter Gaines! Thanks to all who participate.

Comments from our guest judge Yvonne DiVita regarding Molly's tip:

"Molly seems to get the concept of networking – make friends who will introduce you to their friends; and who better to do that than women? Molly says, ‘when a blogger backs a brand, it’s a powerful thing.’ Along with her  mention that ‘female blog subscribers tend to trust the sincerity and authenticity of the bloggers they follow,’ Molly demonstrates the reason blogs are a positive way utilize social media to connect with women.'

Diva Marketing is part of an online influencer network for MNS Business on Main. I receive incentives to share my views on a monthly basis. All opinions are 100% mine.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing - 6

10/23/2009

This is a continuing series highlighting some of the fabulous women in the metro Atlanta area who are working in social media marketing. These divas include women from both the client and the agency side. From a personal (and I must admit selfish) view it's been a fun opportunity to meet and answer the question .. Who are the Atlanta Women In Social Media?

Today's post takes a slightly different direction. Toss of a pink boa to Karen Russell, an amazing prof at UGA, who suggested that I include a special post on educators. I'm very excited to introduce you to professors who are opening the doors of social media strategy to the next generation of  marketing and PR professionals. 

Kaye Sweetser Dr. Kaye Sweetser, Assistant Professor, Public Relations University of Georgia Grady College - Kaye Sweetser.com Google Profile UGA Profile @kaye

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social media marketing is not so much a marketing plan that is created at a corporate level - rather, I see it as the organic word-of-mouth marketing that happens when a product is genuinely good. When it is good & people find it useful, they talk about it & recommend it to others.

Social media public relations, on the other hand, is just an extension of normal public relations where instead of just saying one's publics are important, the company actually reaches out through mass media to individual stakeholder. And then they build real & meaningful relationships with them.

2. My favorite social media tactic - I don't pinpoint a favorite tactic because each group and each goal is differently met. But if I had to have a fave, it would be to be REAL.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Confidence. We have Fortune 500 corporations headquartered here but don't see ourselves as kewl as the San Francisco set.

4. An overview of your class - I teach public relations classes at all levels (undergrad up to doctoral) at the University of Georgia, primarily research. I incorporate social media assignments like creating a Google Analytics reports & teach how to pinpoint meaningful metrics in social media.

5. Social media in your class - I began integrating social media into my classes back in 2004. Since then, I've increased the amount of instruction & focus we have in class on social media. I focus on how social media & metrics supplement traditional programs.

Urkovia Andrews Urkovia Andrews, Assistant Professor Department of Communication Arts Georgia Southern University - Practical Issues  @uandrews

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? To me social media marketing is the use of social media sites to connect with individuals of the same interest area, such as public relations, communications, teaching, etc. The wealth of information and urgency in which it is dispersed via social media sites is idealistic, overwhelming, and yet refreshing. 

2. My favorite social media tactic is - I utilize Twitter more than other social media sites due to the immediacy. It’s often been said we live in a microwave world and Twitter helps amplify the cliché. Unfortunately, this can sometimes be a double-edge sword, as can be seen with recent well-known corporations.

3. In 140 characters What is Atlanta’s greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Atlanta’s already a social media hub, but needs to avoid self-absorption. A lot is offered in Atlanta, but it’s not the end all.

4. Overview of class. I use social media mainly in the International Public Relations course. International PR is designed to expose students to public relations conducted in an international context. The class focuses on the various structures-political, economical, social, etc-that influence public relations practice in the chosen region.

This semester students were required to post their reaction to the various components of International PR on their personal blogs. Several of my tweets this semester have been geared around international issues relevant to the regions we are covering at the time. I’ve also secured upcoming guest speakers via social networking sites. Three of the guest speakers will be visiting the class via Skype calls due to their national and international location. My students are encouraged to engage these guest speakers on Twitter, PROpenMic, or through their blog or website.

5. When did you begin including social media marketing in your classes? I’ve maintained a website for my classes since 2006, yet this is the first semester I’ve branched beyond the website. 

Karen russell Karen Russell, Assistant Professor at University of Georgia Grady College. Dr. Russell is the editor of the Journal of Public Relations Research.  Teaching PR @karenrussell

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - To me, social media is where marketing meets PR, because it's often about building relationships and publicizing people, issues and products.
 
2. My favorite social media tactic - Twitter. I love connecting with students, PR pros, and other educators in such a quick and easy way.
 
3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Right now it's the economy -- I hope when it picks up people will hire my social media savvy students, who have the expertise and the passion to help Atlanta organizations move into the social media space.

4.  Overview of class - UGA has about 180 PR majors, and it's my mission to expose them all to a variety of social media practices. I use social media in all of my public relations classes, by asking students to participate, such as on Twitter, by showing YouTube videos and other social sites in class, and by bookmarking course readings on Delicious.
 
5. When did you begin including social media marketing in your classes? I began offering I used a class blog starting in January 2006, and started my own blog in April of that year. 

Sidebar: Drop a comment if you are prof teaching social media and want to be highlighted

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing_5

08/13/2009

One of the joys in writing Diva Marketing is introducing you to smart, savvy people - both Divas and Divos- who generously share their knowledge and learnings with us. [Inteviews. #smgps. Diva Talks podcasts] This series, Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing, is a little different. Not only is it my tribute to the women in Hotlanta who are actively including social media to build their companies (or their clients' businesses) but it's personal.

My adventures in this industry gave me the opportunity to meet wonderful people all over the world but some how not so much in my own back yard. I wondered .. where are the Atlanta Women in Social Media? One by one I am slowly I am discovering them! 

It gives me great pleasure to introduce you to one of my new BBF Nancy Chorpenning.

Nancy chorpenning Nancy Chorpenning - CSuite Advisors Small Business Central Blog @csuiteadvisors @peacecorpsmeri1

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? -  As a business advisor, my first priority is helping clients develop thoughtful strategic and operating plans, including (as a former dotcom executive and professional marketer) Marketing Plans. Social Media are Marketing Tactics, first and foremost. Trying to use Social Media for marketing your business without having a clear marketing plan and success metrics established beforehand turns SM into a fun but dangerous black hole where you can waste LOTS of time and money just like any other misfire (as in “Ready...Fire...Aim!”).

2. My favorite social media tactic: Finding ways to redeploy content automatically by connecting various social media outlets, e.g., Blog publishing that goes to instantly to Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, Twitter, and Ning pages, and all back again. Efficiency is such a kick! And content is king (said the former publisher…).

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - Dispersion. Our geographical challenges & industry diversity can be both weakness & strength. We don’t have a Silicon Alley or advertising district, just ITP/OTP.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Leveraging an unusual constellation of experience and abilities as catalysts and connectors, C-Suite Advisors engage Entrepreneurs and fast-thinking business owners with stimulating and pragmatic processes to catapult their firm upward. C-Suite Advisors’ specialty is leading growing organizations to their next level of success, including helping them plan and implement the requisite structure, practices, systems and processes.

5. I began offering social media marketing - My first foray into Social Media was back in 2004, still part of the WebMD StartUp management team, when I came upon LinkedIn. Trying to persuade my former associates around the country of its potential was an uphill battle, but my Healtheon-WebMD colleagues were right there. There were some great benefits to that dotcom culture! We saw the power of connecting with our various disease communities, the real power behind the success of WebMD.

So it wasn't a surprise that (some) people are inclined towards communicating with others of similar interests. It wasn't until last year, when Facebook and Twitter came into better focus that i saw the power of connecting all the various SM outlets with single posts. Of course, I haven't figured out how to get that content created while growing a business! (My business partner isn't interested in participating - NOW he tells me!)

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing

Donna Lynes-Miller GourmetStation
Grayson Daughters WaySouth Media
Lya Sorano Lya Sorano.com
Melissa Galt Today By Design
Jeaneane Sessum allied
Melissa Libby MelissaLibbyPR
Amber Rhea Being Amber Rhea
Jacki Schklar Funny Not Slutty
Laura Nolte Green Theory Interactive
Barbara Giamanco Talent Builders
Sue Rodman Field Trips With Sue
Sherry Heyl oncept Hub, Inc
Nadia Bilchik Nadia Speaks
Jen Gordon A Clever Twist
MIchelle Batten iMediaWorksConnects
Peggy Duncan PeggyDuncan.com
Diane DeSeta White Knight
Carol Flammer mRELEVANCE
JoAnn Hines Packaging Launch
Linda Lindsay Insol
Jamie Lackey Pizzeria Venti (Atlanta)
Stephanie Beckham BrainJocks
Lindsay Blankenship Lindsay Blankenship Razorfish
Sandi Karchmer Solow I Send Your Email
Nancy Chorpenning CSuite Advisors
and me! Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing

Please let me know if you're in the metro Atlanta area and are using social media as a marketing strategy for your company/brand or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Check out the other Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing mini interviews.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing_4

07/03/2009

Atlanta has a lively interactive and traditional marketing community. As Jenn Bonnett's new Startup Chicks has proven there are lots of women launching exciting businesses with a tech focus. BUT I wondered .. Where are the women in Atlanta who use social media as a marketing tool? Sooo .. I'm doing what any social media marketer would do reaching out to my network on blogs, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and offline too. My goal is to create a resource list.

If you meet this criteria please let me know. Using social media as a marketing strategy for your company/brand or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Check out the other Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing mini interviews.

Jamie LackeyJaime Lackey Pizzeria Venti (Atlanta) @pvatl Pizzeria Venti (Atlanta) Blog

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - I started social media marketing initiatives with the idea that I could help promote my family’s new restaurant. But once I joined Twitter, I realized how much more there is to social media. For example, we’ve been involved with several charity fundraiser events for local organizations that I discovered through Twitter. In other words, Twitter is helping us to become a better corporate citizen - and the online community connects us with our physical community.

2. My favorite social media tactic is Twitter. At Pizzeria Venti, we have a Facebook page and a blog, but I find Twitter to be more interactive and I really enjoy that.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? The stigma of “what I had for breakfast” tweets. Users must experiment to find connections w/value & learn to use social media effectively.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - At Pizzeria Venti, we strive to bring the food and atmosphere of Italy’s trattorias to Atlanta. The food is authentic Italian, and we do our best to create an atmosphere that is casual and family-friendly but that puts customer service in the highest priority.

5. I began offering social media marketing this year, after opening the restaurant in December 2008. We established our Facebook page first and then realized it isn’t very  easy to have a two-way conversation with fans or to reach out to people who are not yet fans, so I looked into Twitter. Because of the 140-character limit, I realized I needed a blog so I could link to details that take more than 140 characters. So we launched our blog in May.


Stephanie beckham Stephanie Beckham BrainJocks @sbeckham

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social Media Marketing is an outreach effort for your personal or company brand. Anyone who views it as only a way to push a product, blog or services will miss out on a huge opportunity to connect and listen.

The key word here is “social”. Social media adopters are very reluctant to being “marketed” to, so it’s kind of ironic that we actually call it marketing. Social Media is a tool that should be integrated as part of an overall marketing effort, not as a single strategy to sell. The key here is to communicate, network and above all, be real.

2. My favorite social media tactic is being social. Seriously! That’s it. Oh, and there are all these great tools that help brands strategically target the people they want to engage. These tools are free, easy to use and extremely effective.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Pushing past our southern stereotype and proving the strength of our interactive community.

4. 2 sentences about your company - BrainJocks is an established Atlanta web technology company that provides web application and product development services grounded in thorough requirements, analysis and strategy consulting. BrainJocks combines their expertise and experience with the latest trends and technologies in web development and online marketing to help power online ideas. I primarily focus on: Sales, conversation and what’s for lunch?

5. I began using all the latest social media tools in 2008. By the way, what’s a twitter?

Lindsay Blankenship 09 Lindsay Blankenship Lindsay Blankenship Razorfish @lcblankenship

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Razorfish calls it Social influence Marketing (SIM) in recognition of the increasing role that online social influence plays in brand affinity and purchasing decisions.  Consumers are communicating and sharing opinions more and more online through social networks that shape other’s opinions whether its family, friends or a complete stranger. 

2. My favorite social media tactic is testing pushing promotional snippets out to Twitter and Facebook for my clients with trackable URLs and seeing the compound effect it has on getting the message out and now turning into revenue for clients.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Making sure we showcase our social media work locally and nationally to get social media street “creds” from our peers

4. 2 sentences about your company. - I primarily focus on Search Engine Marketing; however my company (Razorfish) is a full service digital agency and is one of the largest interactive marketing and technology companies in the world.  Razorfish employs more than 2,000 people in 21 offices worldwide and have a world-class client list that includes brands like Carnival Cruise Lines, Kraft, Levi’s, McDonald’s and Starwood Hotels.

5. I began SMM personally in the Myspace days - maybe 5yrs ago.  Razorfish has offered Social Influence Marketing to clients for a few years now.

Sandi solow Sandi Karchmer Solow  I Send Your Email I Send Your Email Blog @sandisolow

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - I think of social media marketing as a way to have a direct dialogue with your consumers and stakeholders. The channels defined as social media allow for a unique type of interaction that other marketing channels cannot achieve.

2. My favorite social media tactic is email!

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Our city needs to find a way to differentiate itself from other major U.S. cities - what's our niche?

4. 2 sentences about your company. I am an independent email marketing consultant for companies of all sizes. Whether the company has an established program or is just getting started, I act as an outside resource for all stages of their email marketing program’s strategy and execution lifecycle.

5. I began offering social media marketing in my blog I like to cover ways for incorporating email into Twitter and Facebook. With clients I am frequently discussing coordinating their email programs with their social media plans.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing

Donna Lynes-Miller GourmetStation
Grayson Daughters WaySouth Media
Lya Sorano Lya Sorano.com
Melissa Galt Today By Design
Jeaneane Sessum allied
Melissa Libby MelissaLibbyPR
Amber Rhea Being Amber Rhea
Jacki Schklar Funny Not Slutty
Laura Nolte Green Theory Interactive
Barbara Giamanco Talent Builders
Sue Rodman Field Trips With Sue
Sherry Heyl oncept Hub, Inc
Nadia Bilchik Nadia Speaks
Jen Gordon A Clever Twist
MIchelle Batten iMediaWorksConnects
Peggy Duncan PeggyDuncan.com
Diane DeSeta White Knight
Carol Flammer mRELEVANCE
JoAnn Hines Packaging Launch
Linda Lindsay Insol
Jamie Lackey Pizzeria Venti (Atlanta)
Stephanie Beckham BrainJocks
Lindsay Blankenship Lindsay Blankenship Razorfish
Sandi Karchmer Solow I Send Your Email
and me! Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing_3

06/11/2009

When you first step into social media it's often like being the new kid on the block. Sometimes you might feel shy or uncertain about how to or who to play with in your new neighborhood. What do you do when you're the new kid on the block? You reach out to people with the hope that a couple might turn into "friends." 

Although Diva Marketing had its 5th blog birthday last month I felt a like a stranger in my own home town. Want to know an awesome woman in India - I can put you to touch with Dina Mehta or perhaps you need a cool diva in Germany - happy to introduce you to Nicole Simon or maybe you'd like to know about vlogs in Hawaii, I'm sure Roxanne Darling would be glad to chat with you.

But when it came to the cool Atlanta divas working in social media marketing my network was sadly struggling. So I did what any social media marketing diva would do I began a networking search through blogs, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, email and traditional WOM too. That search morphed into the creation of a resource list of the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing. My thoughts are that this is a work in process .. it all comes down to the relationship.

Criteria: using social media as a marketing strategy for your business ventures or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Look for the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing posts over the next couple of weeks.

Where are the Atlanta Women in social media marketing? Part 3 [Part 1 Part 2]

Jen_gordon Jen Gordon A Clever Twist Who Is Jen Gordon @Jen Gordon @aclevertwist

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social Media marketing seems like an oxymoron at first, but I think it really just means building a community around a common interest and making a product relevant and interesting- not just trying to sell something.

2. My favorite social media tactic is blogging to me is also the best medium because it gives you more opportunity to express a complete thought. A how-to. Give people something to hang on to and learn from. Blogging can be more of a teaching tool and a lot of social media marketing is about sharing expertise.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? – I think the greatest challenge is proximity to Silicon Valley and some of these places where the innovation is at warp speed.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Clever Twist designs and develops creative and interesting applications for companies or individuals across all fields of interest. We specialize in custom (and frequently humorous) iPhone and Facebook applications.

5. I began offering social media marketing in Fall of 2008, with the launch of Clever Twist.

Michelle Batten Michelle Batten iMediaWorksConnect BlogTalkRadio @iMWconnect @AtlCavalier        

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? – To me, true social media is passion + sharing = connecting; the marketing part is really about tapping into the right audience with the right message at the right time in a valuable way so its relevant and acted upon.

2. My favorite social media tactic is reading and commenting on other people's blogs/tweets. Shows you're listening and invites them and others around them to start a dialogue with you.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? WILLPOWER. We must make it an ongoing priority 2 build + maintain connections across disciplines: brands, non-prof, gov, edu, start-ups.  This involves listening, sharing + carving the time out 2 participate.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - iMediaWorks helps brands learn how to tell their story, amplify their experience and nurture their tribe and its culture through an integrated interactive communications strategy that puts social media and other digital channels at the core. Our team Creates Digital Roadmaps for brands as well as offers specific consulting services in areas such as digital branding, customer segmentation, cross-channel optimization and decision-based performance analytics.  I primarily focus on B2C and non-profits.

5. Began in social media marketing in the Fall of 2006. Currently conducting a research study of the Fortune 500’s use of social media across 8 channels, which will be featured in my new blog series “Will They Stay or Will They Go?” airing Thursdays at 4pm on BlogTalk radio.  Also serving as Programming Co-Chair for the Atlanta Chapter of The Social Media Club, which meets the 2nd Thursday of each month.

PeggyDuncan Peggy Duncan – PeggyDuncan.com SuiteMinute @peggyduncan

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - It’s magnetic marketing that draws people from all over the world to you and vice versa.

2. My favorite social media tactic is keeping my blog content fresh with technology discussions that everyday people can understand and use.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - You can be southern and savvy. For some strange reason people are still surprised by that.

4.  2 sentences about your company. – My main focus is on improving personal productivity through training and consulting on organization, time management, Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and shameless self-promotion with WordPress. I travel internationally, am an author of several books on my topics, and an award-winning technology blogger.

5. Began in social media marketing March 2007, I transferred my 8-year old Webzine to a blog and kept the same focus of demystifying technology. I'm now conducting a WordPress Blogging Bootcamp for small business owners. They learn how to create a self-hosted WordPress blog, optimize it for search engines, and connect it with other social media such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. This ties perfectly to my expertise in personal productivity because I also teach how to find time to do all this.

Diane DeSeta.jpg_2 Diane DeSeta White Knight @ddeseta
 
1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social media marketing is about transparency, honesty, tolerance, and giving. As individuals we have the ability to make meaningful connections with people by engaging in dialogue around common themes. For companies it's an opportunity to reveal the humanity behind the brands by encouraging sincere dialogue with customers which can be a potent influence on customer loyalty. 

2. My favorite social media tactic is Crowd Sourcing. I consistently reach out to my network of colleagues and clients to vet ideas, help spread the word, and get valuable feedback on marketing campaigns. The crowd is the source in social media.
 
3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Recognizing that we already are a social media hub for the South East.

4. 2 sentences about your company. –  My six year old company, WhiteKnightllc is an interactive marketing agency that specializes in creating immersive interactive marketing experiences on the web that engage customers with brands in a meaningful way. We service clients of all sizes in both the B2B and B2C spaces.
 
5. I began offering social media marketing /or using social media marketing - Our company began offering social media marketing services to clients in 2004 beginning with Fox Interactive Media. Most recently my social media activities include serving as Co-Chair for the Atlanta Chapter of the Social Media Club and spinning tunes as a DJ on blip.fm.

Carol M Flammer Carol Flammer  mRelevance Atlanta Real Estate Forum @AtlantaPR @mRELEVANCE

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social media marketing is about attracting, educating and engaging buyers online. It is a powerful optimization tool, as well as a way to manage reputation, build brand and create community. One of my favorite articles on our blog.

2. My favorite social media tactic is blogging.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - Atlanta’s social media hub challenge is the same as many cities – lack of talent to effectively tie it all together online  - Relevance.
 
4. 2 sentences about your company. -  mRELEVANCE is a social media, Internet marketing and public relations agency creating relevant on and offline relationships for clients. We are known for creating effective web presence with strong content, call to action and measurable ROI. I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C  (or your could say Real Estate and related industries)

5. I began offering social media marketing - We started repurposing content online and blogging on behalf of clients in 2006.  It was referred to as new media at the time.

 Joann hinesJoAnn Hines Packaging Launch  Packaging Diva Packaging University @PackagingDiva

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social Media to me is engaging your best audience in a meaningful, constructive manner.

2. My favorite social media tactic is answers questions and provides timely insights, relevant advice plus a few laughs along the way.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Anonymity of the key players.

4.  2 sentences about your company. - I package people, products and services. I'm one of the most "connected" people in packaging, the 3rd largest  industry in the US.

Linda lindsey Linda Lindsey  Insol @Insol_IT  Little Brown Dog Marketing

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? – Social media marketing - finally something new to play with!  What's not to like?  It's easy, free, fast, track-able, interesting, it's perfect for today's "got to have it now, the way I want it" culture.  I've always been fascinated by the sociology behind what makes people do anything, especially interact with a brand.

2. My favorite social media tactic is twitter ... love the varying functionality like twitterhawk ...

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? There is no reason Atlanta cannot be a social media hub…

4. 2 sentences about your company. – Insol takes care of existing and future Information Management requirements by addressing the full life cycle of network services for small and medium sized businesses in Atlanta. Focus is primarily B2B.

5. I began in social media marketing – 2008.

Atlanta Women in Social Media

Donna Lynes-Miller GourmetStation
Grayson Daughters WaySouth Media
Lya Sorano Lya Sorano.com
Melissa Galt Today By Design
Jeaneane Sessum allied
Melissa Libby MelissaLibbyPR
Amber Rhea Being Amber Rhea
Jacki Schklar Funny Not Slutty
Laura Nolte Green Theory Interactive
Barbara Giamanco Talent Builders
Sue Rodman Field Trips With Sue
Sherry Heyl oncept Hub, Inc
Nadia Bilchik Nadia Speaks
Jen Gordon A Clever Twist
MIchelle Batten iMediaWorksConnects
Peggy Duncan PeggyDuncan.com
Diane DeSeta White Knight
Carol Flammer mRELEVANCE
JoAnn Hines Packaging Launch
Linda Lindsay Insol
and me! Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing

Where are the Atlanta women in social media marketing? Where are the women on the client/brand side? If you want to be included or know of anyone who meets the criteria please leave a comment or shoot me an email.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing_2

06/02/2009

Part 2 of Where Are the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing?
Part 1

For me, the secret sauce of social media marketing is in how the tech tools with odd sounding names like blogs and wikis and Twitter can build and nurture old fashion corner grocer store relationships. While my travels in social media extended my network across the States and several oceans a few weeks ago I realized I knew few women in social media marketing in my own home town - Atlanta.

To borrow a phrase from my friends at BlogHer I wondered, "Where are the Atlanta women working in social media marketing?" I'm on the search find the talented Hot'lanta social media divas and in doing so create a resource list that will shine a light on them.

Criteria: using social media as a marketing strategy for your business ventures or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Look for the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing posts over the next couple of weeks.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing

Jacki Schklar Jacki Schklar Funny Not Slutty @JackiSchklar

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - It means having a forum to become friends with comedy producers in the UK and Tel Aviv and working together with them remotely. It means introducing a talented Australian artist to new fans in the US.

2. My favorite social media tactic is bonding with humor.

3. In 140 characters what is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub?- I think of a social media hub in terms of industry or interest, not geographical location. I get emails from people who think I’m in NYC or LA on a regular basis because of my affiliation with those cities.

4. 2 sentences about your company. – Funny not Slutty features comedy for women created by female producers, writers, humorists and comedians. Our content may be a little smarter and a little deeper than your average web humor (sometimes).  Focus is on B2B and B2C.

5. Began in social media marketing - With the promotion of my animation project, How to Live and Eat like a Southern Jewish Princess, in 2008. I had previous interactive and journalism experience so it was an easy transition.

Laura nolte Laura Nolte Green Theory Interactive @Laura_nolte

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? -Social Media marketing is a very accessible and cost effective way to learn about and engage my client’s customers and prospects. This medium is unmatched in terms of the breadth and depth of targeting that it offers.

2. My favorite social media tactic is contributing to the content and community in highly specialized LinkedIn groups to generate B2B leads. This is particularly effective when targeting C-level executives.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? As a city with a big media presence including TBS, Atlanta is poised for social media growth. The key will be getting  Atlanta’s big brands to support this medium.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Green Theory is a marketing consultancy that works primarily with venture backed startup companies. We develop marketing plans, install marketing technologies and hire marketing teams. 60% of my focus is on B2B marketing and the other 40% is on B2C marketing. 

5. Began in social media marketing - I started using social media in 2001 by interacting with food blogs and I started using social media as a marketing tool for clients in 2004 by testing content and advertising on blogs.

Barb giamanco Barbara Giamanco Talent Builders Barbara Giamanco @barbaragiamanco

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - For me, social media marketing is the opportunity to create community, conversation and connection with people anywhere in the world. Used effectively, you can build brand awareness, demonstrate credibility and capability, and create relationships with potential buyers long before you meet them.

 2. My favorite social media tactic is sharing valuable content. I use a variety of social media tools like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, BlogTalkRadio, Delicious, Blogs and more to keep abreast of information that I then can share with potential clients, current clients or colleagues that I know will find value in the information. I’m all about “give to receive”.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - Atlanta’s current challenge is the “flash in the pan – look at me I’m an expert” types claiming to understand social media.  They don't.  **Add this if you want too…I wanted to stay within the 140 character request. And a hub implies interconnectedness, but I notice more individual focus versus a willingness to team up with others to create something powerful. Ironic given the nature of what “social” media is all about.

4. 2 sentences about your company – About Talent Builders: We help business owners and sales teams accelerate the sales cycle by better qualifying sales opportunities on the front end. The result is faster close rates and a reduction in wasted money and time. Our talented team of professionals brings to the table an impressive array of experience, skills and abilities to assist you in achieving your sales goals. My primary focus is B2B.

5.  Began in social media marketing - Since 1997 while still at Microsoft, I began working with the early tools. I headed up Microsoft’s first sales team to support Internet retailers like Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble. My corporate career was in technology, so I’ve always been an early adopter and a closet “tech geek”. I have been proactively using LinkedIn, email marketing and internet radio since about 2004. As other tools came out like Delicious, Ning, Twitter, etc. I jumped on early and learned how to integrate them into my sales/marketing strategies. Blogging took me some time to get in a groove with, but now I’m a very active blogger.


Sue rodman_2 Sue Rodman Field Trips With Sue @suerodman

1. Social media marketing offers people and brands the opportunity to find, build and nurture relationships online, making offline activities more meaningful. If I follow someone on twitter or see their status or photos on Facebook, I have some reference for discussion the next time (or the first time) we meet in person.

2. My favorite social media tactic is my blog fieldtripswithsue.com. It gives me an excuse to do fun things with my kids, has become a conversation piece with friends old and new and opened up doors professionally. It's also been a great learning tool.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - Time. Everyone wants results tomorrow. Social media is about building relationships, it doesn't happen overnight. But when it does, it's extremely powerful.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Fieldtripswithsue.com is about inexpensive things to do in and around metro Atlanta with children. It's been nominated as best local blog in the Nickelodeon Parents' Pick Awards (vote early and often, each day until July 15). The blog also serves as a testing/ proving ground to
learn more about social media and how to use it for marketing and public relations.

5. Began in social media marketing - February 08  - I attended SoCon. The big takeaway was that you have to jump in and do something. Field Trips with Sue was started in Nov. 08 so I could do something and learn. (It took a while to determine what that something would be.)  

Sherry heyl Sherry Heyl Concept Hub, Inc @sherryheyl

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social Media gives everyone a voice. It is as important as the printing press was and has disrupted every business model that exist today and is challenging every assumption we have held about what we are capable of.

2. My favorite social media tactic is status updates throughout my various networks which helps me to share information and stay top of mind.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Learning to work together as a community.

4. 2 sentences about your company - Launched in 2005, Concept Hub, Inc is a full service social media agency.  Services include; Social Media Business Plans, Customized Training, and Campaign Management.
I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C, Nonprofit, Education

5. I began in social media marketing Oct 2005

Nadia bilchik Nadia Bilchik Nadia Speaks Nadia Bilchik @nadiabilchik

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? - Social Media Marketing is a way for me to communicate my expertise with many people in a new way.

2. My favorite social media tactic is using Twitter to tell people about my experiences.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? - Atlanta’s biggest challenge is not embracing social media more!

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Greater Impact Communucation is a Media and Presentation Skills training company. We focus on getting individuals to leverage their Personal Presence and to Elevate sales and the trajectory of their careers. Focus is b2b, particularly broadcasting. PR, and pharma.

5. First began offering social media in networking for success workshops for Coke in 2007. Brought in a Linked In Guru to give webinars for my clients. Now its a big part of Virtual Presence in Professional Presenceseminars.

Atlanta Women in Social Media

Donna Lynes-Miller GourmetStation
Grayson Daughters WaySouth Media
Lya Sorano Lya Sorano.com
Melissa Galt Today By Design
Jeaneane Sessum allied
Melissa Libby MelissaLibbyPR
Amber Rhea Being Amber Rhea
Jacki Schklar Funny Not Slutty
Laura Nolte Green Theory Interactive
Barbara Giamanco Talent Builders
Sue Rodman Field Trips With Sue
Sherry Heyl oncept Hub, Inc
Nadia Bilchik Nadia Speaks
and me! Toby Bloomberg Diva Marketing

Girlfriends, I ask you .. Where are the Atlanta women in social media marketing? Where are the women on the client/brand side? If you want to be included or know of anyone who meets the criteria please leave a comment or shoot me an email.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing_1

05/26/2009

A couple of weeks ago Mashable held a smashing mash in Atlanta for over 400 of its closest friends .. who signed up before the fire marshalls could call Stop! no more people. I shared a glass of vino or two with friends, got to hug a live pink boa, complements of Jungle Disk, Live pink boa and met new people. However it became crystal clear that although Diva Marketing celebrated its 5th blog-birthday my social media network is more global than local.

I found myself asking, "Who are these people and what do they do? What is happening in Atlanta social media marketing? To para phrase from my friends at BlogHer ..Where are the Atlanta women in social media marketing?"

A few months back BBF Dan Greenfield suggested that I interview the women in Atlanta who are involved in social media marketing. Last week ideas synergized .. why not create a resource list that highlights the women in Atlanta who are working in social media marketing? But not just a boring list .. a series of mini interviews where we can get to know these women better. Along the way perhaps new friendships will take online offline.

Criteria: using social media as a marketing strategy for your business ventures or helping clients use social media as a marketing strategy. Look for the Atlanta Women in Social Media Marketing posts over the next couple of weeks.

Atlanta Women In Social Media Marketing

Donna Lynes-Miller Donna Lynes-Miller - GourmetStation Delicious Destinations Blog
@gourmetstation


1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media marketing provides GourmetStation with non-conforming, non-traditional, casual and comfortable ways of communicating with our customers outside of our website. All social media tactics provide our brand with a means for different aspects of our brand personality to shine through.

2. My favorite social media tactic is our travel and culture blog, Delicious Destinations which include guest writers from around the world.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? With Internet driven social media tactics, I believe it will be difficult for any city to be a hub. The Internet is the great equalizer giving all regions the chance to participate.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - GourmetStation is a national food gifting company specializing in 3 & 4 course gourmet dinners, steak & seafood dinners, soup samples and dessert gifts. GourmetStation products also include dining certificates and monthly dinner clubs used by both consumers and businesses. I primarily focus on: B2C and B2B

5. Began in social media marketing: 2005

(Bloggy disclosure GourmetStation was one of my first social media marketing clients .. and proof that clients can be dear friends.)

Grayson daughters Grayson Daughters - MediaConnection.tv WaySouth Media, Inc

@SpacyG

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media means staying relevant and informed in very turbulent times. Without social media, there's not much I could offer clients, or show potential ones, that could possibly set me apart from the pack. 

2. My favorite social media tactic is is the distribution of a video, or other original media I've created for myself or for a client, via Twitter. So easy. So fun. Such immediate feedback.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? In the corporate arena, Atlanta's greatest challenge is getting over the tendency to do things the way they've always been done. For decades. Right now is just the crazy time to try something oh-so-bleeding edge. In an economy like this, what could it possibly hurt?!

4. 2 sentences about your company. - Grayson Daughters is the founder of WaySouth Media, Inc. - producing and promoting new media. She blogs at Mostly Media, and you can follow her on Twitter as SpaceyG. Her very latest online venture is MediaConnection.tv. 

5. Began in social media marketing - I started using social media in 1995! (I think that's when I got my first dial-up/AOL account.) I started the first AOL Melrose Place chatroom on AOL, jointly with some dude from LA named J.T. Bug. I'll never forget that name, nor that first live chatroom experience. I published a southern culture webzine called WaySouth from '98-2000. I've been blogging since May of 2005, and was an early adopter of Twitter and Facebook (when it went beyond colleges). 

Lya Sorano 1008 headshot - small Lya Sorano LyaSorano.com Great Southern Speakers Georgia Gardener
No Twitter – I’m too exhausted!

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media marketing opens up channels of communication and potential sales that did not exist before. Opportunities pop up that twentieth century marketing did not provide.

2.
My favorite social media tactic is to provoke discussions.
 
3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub?
Traffic! People sit in commuter traffic all day and are too exhausted to peep – much less care about social media.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - The Oliver/Sorano Group, Inc. provides marketing and PR support, including social media strategies, to clients in a variety of industries. I primarily focus on: B2B.

5. Began in social media marketing around 2006-07.

Melissa Galt Melissa Galt -Today By Design Melissa Galt.com
@prosperbydesign

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social marketing is about the ability to connect to your target market cost effectively, frequently, and succinctly with value content.  It is about using multiple channels and layering communications for ultimate effectiveness.

2. My favorite social media tactic is the variety of tools and applications available on Twitter, acebook, and LinkedIN that add fun, convenience, and facilitate the sharing of information. Strategically I am a fan of Tweetlater as it allows me maximum control of my time while still maintaining by exposure and my reach.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Atlanta has a golden opportunity to truly land on the map of social media, but to do so will require more leaders to step forward and claim their place.  The city is home to many great entrepreneurs and creatives, yet still the value of social media is not always understood.

4. 2 sentences about your company. - I speak, consult, train and mentor small businesses who think BIG and want to harness the power of social media and new marketing taking their business to the next level, and unleashing unlimited success.

5. Began in social media marketing - I have been using social media since 2008, and have been offering to clients this year.  I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C, Nonprofit, Education.  I believe it is the single factor that can keep many businesses afloat in tough economic times as it provides simple, effective tools to reach targeted buyers and decision makers whether business to business or business to consumer.  Social media is the cornerstone of relationship marketing and with women becoming an increasingly significant force in both consumer and business goods, new marketing as social media is considered, is essential.

Jeneane sessum Jeneane Sessum allied  Jeneane.net
@jeneane

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social Media Marketing means reaching customers and communities on behalf of my clients using social spaces on the Internet, where people come together to do/discuss/create/laugh/complain about what interests them.

2. My favorite social media tactic is monitoring and participating in the range of social media discussions to identify what Really Urgent Community Need a client can help solve to make something better for an existing or potential customer.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? To replace the “broadcast and sales pitch” mindset with genuine listening and understanding. To talk with not at.

4. 2 sentences about your company: Sessum Creative is an Atlanta-based marketing and public relations consultancy focused on helping clients talk with their markets using the power of social media and the Internet. Working with clients at home and internationally since 1998, we help clients with strategy, messaging, content development and media relations. I primarily focus on: B2B, B2C, Internet startups

5. Began in social media marketing - I entered social media as a blogger myself in 2001 with my personal blog allied). My first social media clients were Elimitaste Gum, Qumana, and Cox Communications. I helped these clients develop a blogging strategy and put in place processes to make sure that strategy worked. The primary goal was to use blogs as an effective way to talk to customers and build thought leadership.

Melissa libby Melissa Libby  MelissaLibbyPR Atlanta Dish blog

@melissal

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Social media is public relations at its best. It is old fashioned communications with new technology. You must create relationships and spend quality time with people in order to have a genuine dialogue.

2.
My favorite social media tactic is Facebook status updates and photo postings.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub?Too many advertising focused minds.

4. Include 2 sentences about your company. Melissa Libby & Associates was founded in 1992 and specializes in PR and social marketing for restaurants and anything edible or quaffable. I primarily focus on: B2B.

5. Began social media marketing - I attended a social media seminar at the University of Georgia in October of 2007 and it changed my business model immediately. On the way home I spoke to a client, Fifth Group Restaurants, and the owner agreed for his restaurants to be our guinea pigs as we figured everything out. We dove in. By December 2007 I had restructured my company to accommodate the social media function and now have two full-time employees who do nothing but SM.

Amber rhea Amber Rhea Being Amber Rhea Georgia Podcast Network Sex 2.0 Conference
@amberlrhea  - To keep us honest Amber provides us a "point counter point."

1. What does social media marketing mean to you? Honestly? Most of the time, when I hear phrases like “social media marketing,” the first assocation in my head is “obnoxious.” That might be unfair; but I guess I've just seen a lot of companies/individuals where I want to scream, “You're doing it wrong!”  I don't really use social media for marketing. It's an integral part of my life. I've been doing the social media thing since before anyone used the term “social media,” and it touches all areas of my life. I don't want to get ranty but I have to say one thing I've been disappointed with in the “social media scene” (such as it is) in Atlanta is how there is so much focus on business, marketing, PR to the exclusion of anything else.

If that's not your primary focus with social media, you're really looked down upon by a lot of people; some of them can't even conceive of someone not using social media purely as a marketing tool. It's frustrating because the people who are busy building their “personal brand” and establishing themselves as “thought leaders” wouldn't be doing what they're doing if it weren't for those of us who got into blogging, etc. years ago, back when the business world as a whole scoffed at us.

Example: At SoCon07, a fellow attendee argued with me when I talked about (how) transparency and being real are important things online. He was actually very condescending and was stuck on the idea of, your life will be ruined if someone sees you doing something dumb on YouTube. But funny thing, at SoCon08, he was back, and this time he was a social media consultant.

2. My favorite social media tactic is being accountable to myself and others.

3. In 140 characters - What is Atlanta's greatest challenge in becoming a social media hub? Entrepreneurs in Atlanta need to think outside the box for real and be proactive, not reactive.

4. Include 2 sentences about your company. The Georgia Podcast Network isn't really a company, except for tax purposes! It's portal site for Georgia-based podcasts. If you live in Georgia and want to start a podcast, you can host it on the Georgia Podcast Network for free. It also includes a directory of podcasts based in Georgia that are hosted on other sites. The show Rusty and I cohost, Mostly ITP, was voted Best of Atlanta 2006 by Creative Loafing, and Best of Atlanta 2008 by Atlanta Magazine.

I primarily focus on:  Life, friends, activism, work, technology, sexuality, politics, learning, thinking... and whatever else happens to strike my fancy at a particular moment.

5. Began in social media - I started my blog in April 2002 - so I recently had my 7th blogiversary. I've had a web site since 1996, though (or a "home page" as we called them back then) and have been writing about my life online since then. I wrote a little bit about my history on the internet