Will Social Media Influence The Travel Channel Launch's of "Deep Fried America?" An interview with host Jay Ducote

06/20/2016

Jay Ducote_1Jay Ducote came to my attention when he battled it out last year on the Food Network show Food Network Star Season 11.

For those who might not be food TV fans (a guilty pleasure of mine... take a look at Diva Foodies!) the winner of Food Network Star walks away with the biggest prize in food TV competiton ~ their own show on the Food Network.

Although Jay came in 2nd there was no doubt that he knew his way in the kitchen - indoors and outdoors, had great on-air presence and the fans loved  him. Seems the Scripps Networks Interactive brass thought so too because they offered Jay an amazing opportunity to film a pilot for a sister network, Travel Channel.

What makes Jay especially relevant to the Diva Marketing community is his use of social media, aka Social TV, to promote his on-air opportunity on the Food Network and to leverage the social buzz to encourage Scripps Networks Interactive to pick up the Deep Fried America pilot.

In our Diva Marketing interview Jay generous shares his insights on Social TV, how to social media tips, some of his Food Network Star backstory and what it was like to be a dude blogger back in 2009! Enjoy Jay's Story.

About Jay Ducote According To Jay Ducote

I’m a friendly, fun loving guy from Louisiana who loves to celebrate food and beverage culture. I’m a chef, writer, speaker, entertainer and hugger. I’ve got a product line available called Jay D’s with a Louisiana Barbecue Sauce, Louisiana Molasses Mustard and Spicy & Sweet Barbecue Rub.

Diva Marketing: Before we dive into how you’re using social media to support the Travel Channel pilot for your pilot of Deep Fried America, let’s set the stage for the peeps in our community who may not now But are soon to be (!) avid food TV viewers.

Not to be snarky, but there are so many food shows what makes Deep Fried America different and a must watch... in addition to the awesome host of course?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried AmericaDeep Fried America presents a great mix of drool-worthy food, talented chefs and fun travel.

I’m going to be in the kitchen helping prepare (and eating of course) some amazing food, the caveat is that something in it has to be cooked in a deep fryer.

But we aren’t just looking for normal fried foods, we are talking to chefs who are being innovative and creating new dishes using the fryer.

Diva Marketing: The concept of Deep Fried America was taken from one of your Food Network Star show challenges. On Food Network Star you were positioned as the BBQ guy who developed his cooking chops (pun intentional) from tailgating parties at LSU. Fried foods seems like a step in another direction. Why a fried food focus? Say that fast 3 times: fried food focus/fried food focus/fried food focus!

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: The short answer is because the Network loved it and wanted it. They pushed Eddie in the BBQ direction and had me go toward the fried foods.

To be fair, while I did some grilling on Food Network Star, I never really got to do any barbecuing or even make a version of my BBQ sauce. I tried to one time, but our groceries got swapped and Eddie ended up making the BBQ sauce instead (4th of July challenge).

On the culinary improv episode of Food Network Star I fried calamari and gave a line to live audience including people from the Network that being from Louisiana, anything that flies, crawls, walks, slithers or swims, we fry it. From that point on I think the Network liked positioning me as a fried foods guy.

All that being said, I definitely have a special place in my heart and stomach for deep fried foods. Fried Chicken would be on the plate if I got to choose my last mean. A beignet in Louisiana is the perfect breakfast. At tailgate parties you can rest assured that we had an outdoor deep fryer right next to the grill!

Diva Marketing: Let’s talk blogs! I’ve been active in the blogosphere for over 12 years and have known some great food bloggers. Although most chefs are men, most food bloggers are women.

Do you think being a dude in that world gave Bite & Booze, launched in 2009, a competitive advantage? Why or why not?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: Without a doubt, 100%.

I think that being a large, bearded, masculine man with a love for barbecue and beer and whiskey and fried foods helped set me apart in the food blog world.

While I would be just another guy in the kitchen, taking the food blog route helped differentiate me. I can remember going to food blog conferen Jay Ducote_3ces and the audience being 80-90% women and 10-20% men, and of those men, rarely was there another guys like me.

So I stood out in the world. And I was able to make a name for myself in that world. I got more and more opportunities to speak or to be on camera because of that. It definitely helped grow my blog and my brand.

Diva Marketing: Blogs are ever evolving and where you begin is not necessarily where you end up. How has the focus of Bite & Booze changed from back in the 2009 days?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: My blog, Bite & Booze, started as a personal food journal. I wrote a blog about what I had for lunch that day just so I could keep track of it. I was working an office job in downtown Baton Rouge and I wanted to something to cure me of my boredom.

I knew right away that I would want it to focus on supporting local restaurants and chefs, but I had no idea it would grow into what it has become.

I now speak of Bite & Booze not as a blog, but as a culinary media company. The website is still primarily a blog, but we also do a radio show (since 2011… in 2014 it won a Taste Award as the best food or drink based radio broadcast in the country), podcasts, video production, lots of social media stuff, events and more.

Diva Marketing: What tips on how to create compelling blog content that builds a loyal audience can you give us?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America

1. Stay consistent. Whatever your theme or brand is, stay consistent with it.

2. Also be personal. I find that people really like to feel like they get to know the blogger or the person behind the posts.

I don’t do a whole lot of recipe blogging, but has been part of my strategy. I support and celebrate the entire local food scene wherever I am from farmers to chefs and restaurants to people making cool products.

Diva Marketing: When doing research for our interview I came across an article from The Advocate. The headlined caught my attention. 

Jay Ducote's ‘Deep Fried’ pilot to air on Travel Channel June 25; future depends on viewer engagement

How important will the social buzz be to impact the Travel Channel's decision to pick up your pilot and why?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: There are a couple ways to give Travel Channel good, immediate feedback on the show.

The first is for people to actually watch and set their DVRs to record the broadcast. The people in charge will see those ratings and get that data.

Secondly, social engagement absolutely helps. If @travelchannel is bombarded with tweets during the broadcast, they’ll know that not only are people watching, but they are also engaging. That’s powerful information for them to be able to take to advertisers who would purchase air time during my show.

At the end of the day this is a business, and producing great content is only good if it can be sold to sponsors and advertisers.

So the social buzz will let Travel Channel and potential advertisers know that there will be engaged viewers if they pick the show up for multiple seasons.

Diva Marketing: Let’s look at what is called Social TV on a more global basis.

Although Nielsen includes Twitter and now public Facebook into its TV ratings, in your opinion, to what extent do most producers/TV food media companies bring active social media into their digital marketing/out-reach mix?

Jay Ducote_4_social tv

(By active social media I mean, authentically engaging with the show’s fans versus broadcasting messages about the show or network.)

 Jay Ducote, Deep Fried AmericaI feel like a lot of brands/people could truly be more active, especially when a show airs.

For pretty much every episode of Food Network Star last summer my team and I were live tweeting with fans during the episode. You never really see that from the big stars or the networks themselves. But I think they should.

The ability to now engage directly with the fans while a show is airing is pretty incredible.

Doing it live can be pretty tricky for sure, but I find that it is worth it!

 Diva Marketing: I totally agree Jay! Now, a very basic but important question Jay – what benefits does social, done well, bring to the table?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: 4 Social Media Benefits

1. Social media gives everyone the opportunity to grow a brand in ways that weren’t possible before.

2. It gives fans a chance to get an inside glimpse, connect with a personality or follow their journey.

3. It also gives people like me a platform beyond the mass media outlets like TV or Radio.

4. So when it is done well, it is possible to build and retain a fan base outside of the traditional media outlets.

Diva Marketing: What are your thoughts about the benefits/importance of food TV personalities, chefs and contestants, live tweeting during their own shows?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: I do it. It makes sense. It helps build and audience and grow a brand. It can be tough to make time for it, but it is so worth it.

Diva Marketing: If you were King of a food media company how would you use social media aka Social TV?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: 

I’d make it part of my social media plan to use social to support on-air content and use on-air content to push people to social.

I’d make it to where a large part of my social strategy would be live-tweeting shows and posting on other platforms about new programming that is on the air. I’d make sure I had a team of people to actively engage with social rather than just be shouting into the void.

Diva Marketing: In addition to blogs, you’re active on multiple social media channels and have been leveraging them to support Deep Fried America. How do you play to the strengths of, let’s say the Big 3: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America:

Facebook: Provide links, pictures, video content. Ask questions and get engagement in a thread.

Instagram: Photos are key. Use pictures that resonate in one way or another.

Twitter: Inform and engage. Short format messaging. Connect with the audience by engaging in conversation.

Jay Ducote_6 tweet

 Diva Marketing: Are you looking at insights/metrics and if so (1) which are most valuable to you and (2) what tools are you using to measure?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: Probably not as much as I should. I look at some Facebook data but that’s about it. I see engagement on Twitter and Instagram but I don’t go too deep into analytics.

Diva Marketing: Although text/image driven channels like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook can include links to videos they are a “still world.” How did you build your personal brand to authentically bring Jay Ducote to digital life, so to speak?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried AmericaInstagram is great for short little videos and Facebook is awesome for videos. I haven’t really done a whole lot yet with live streaming or other video content like that.

I kind of let my other content speak for itself. Though I do think that doing a little more live stuff or short videos would be a good idea.

Diva Marketing: Let’s go back to Social TV in food media. Who do you think in terms of a TV chef gets it and is doing it right?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: I think Alton Brown does a really good job with this social media. He is active and engaging.

Diva Marketing: What are a couple of tips you can pass along to your TV food chef pals in terms of how to do social right to build their personal brand and support their TV shows?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: 4 Social Media Tips

1. Just a little effort goes a long way.

2. Think about it in advance.

3. Use services to schedule content in advance rather than wait until the show is airing to even think about it.

4. Make it a priority to have social engagement as part of our overall brand strategy.

Diva Marketing: I love how Alton Brown uses cartoons that are shown against tweets when he live tweets Cutthroat Kitchen. We’re thinking optimistically, when Deep Fried America is on-air how will you use social media to support the show? Jay Ducote_5_alton brown
Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: Well crap, I didn’t see this before I answered with Alton Brown earlier. Yes, I like that too.

I’m obviously going to do all the things that we’ve mentioned before. Beyond that, who knows! We’ll have to see what happens.

Diva Marketing: Guess great minds think a like, or something like that! Jay, how can we support you in ensuring Deep Fried America lives to be part of the Travel Channel’s lineup?

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: Watch it, set DVRs, ask your friends to do the same, live tweet the show and tag @travelchannel and @jayducote and #deepfriedamerica. Do the same thing on Facebook and Instagram.

Diva Marketing: As is the tradition of Diva Marketing interviews, the guest always has the last response. Wrap this anyway you’d like.

Jay Ducote, Deep Fried America: I’m certainly hoping that this turns into something much more than a pilot. It is a really exciting time and opportunity for me, but I won’t be pleased with the results unless the show gets picked up for a season. And then another. And then another.

I know I’ve got a lot of work to do ahead of me to continue to pursue my passion and chase my dreams. The TV side of everything I do is actually just a small part of my overall business model.

Bite & Booze, my culinary media company that started as a blog in 2009, and Hug Jay D, which is my product company that launched in 2014, are just the beginning.

Coming in 2017 will be my first restaurant, Gov’t Taco, a gourmet taco shop in Baton Rouge, La. And I’m sure there will be much more coming down the line as I continue to grow all of my brands and businesses.

Deep Fried America has a chance to be a huge part of that growth, so all the support and encouragement is definitely appreciated. Let’s make sure the Travel Channel knows that people out there want the show!

Connect with Jay!

Jay Ducote: Website | Twitter | Instagram

Bite and Booze: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Hug J D: Facebook 

Saturday, June 25, 12:30 CT, on Travel Channel

Jaydeepfriedamericalogo

 

 

Stories From Smaller Nonprofits: Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

12/28/2010

Stars This December the winds blew colder than usual and for many their winter wonderland turned life into a world of isolation. For nonprofits, who depend on the kindness of strangers, this year especially, with the challenges of the economy it seemed to feel as thought they were fighting the battle for their cause alone.

During this month Diva Marketing is shining the light on a few smaller nonprofits. It is our hope that stories you read will inspire you to help in ways that fit with your life .. be it a donation, an hour of volunteer time, a Facebook status update or an extra tweet.

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative is as unique and personal as its name. Alzheimer's can impact the lives of its victims and their families in much the same way as the winter blizzards can wrap you in isolation and fear. However, through the works created by Ami Simms and a group of gifted quilters there is hope and warmth.

The story of the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative is told by it's founder Ami Simms.

I am a quilter. I founded Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative in the midst of my mother's 7-year struggle with Alzheimer's disease because I had to do something. I don't know how to cure disease, but I do know how
Mom&Ami to quilt.  I have a voice in the quilting community and I thought this was the time to open my mouth. Photo of Ami and her Mom. 

More than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer's, a neurodegenerative disease that destroys brain cells. With cell death come memory loss and cognitive decline. Alzheimer's isn't forgetting where you went on vacation in 1997, it’s the gradual loss of every memory you ever had, every skill you ever learned, and every relationship you ever held dear. You lose yourself, bit by bit. So far, there are no survivors.

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) is a grassroots, Internet-based effort to raise awareness and fund research through art. We sponsor a nationally touring exhibit of quilts about Alzheimer's called Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope. Fifty-three small format art quilts explore the disease from a variety of perspectives. They are shown with 182 "Name Quilts," each a 6-inch by 7-foot quilted panel of names of people who have/had Alzheimer's or a related dementia. There are more than 10,000 names in all, written by family members and friends.

The AAQI sells and auctions donated quilts, more than 6,100 so far. The Priority: Alzheimer's Quilt project offers a way for quilters to grieve the loss of a loved one with needle and thread. Those who can't thread a needle can open their wallets to honor their efforts and fund research. (See our Quilts For Sale page.) 

Since 2006, our all-volunteer charity has raised nearly $500,000 for Alzheimer's research, one quilt at a time. The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative auctions small quilts the first 10 days of every month. Please visit us to see the quilts in the January auction and to participate in the online auction. AGI _ umbrella of hope  

Social Media Does Social Good

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative does not maintain a traditional "donor list" of names and street addresses. Instead, we rely on virtual "word of mouth."

1. Every donated quilt gets its own web page that includes a photograph of the quilt, information about the quilt, and a place for a dedication if the artist wishes. Donors are encouraged to email, blog, facebook, and tweet when their quilt is up for auction or available on our web site to purchase. We facebook and tweet the number of every quilt sold.

2. All news about the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative is disseminated via email, facebook, and/or RSS feed to our AAQIUpdate blog. Donations are accepted through our website and through 3,000-member facebook causes page. We are listed and reviewed in GreatNonprofits.com 

3. Supporters help us by placing our logo (linked back to our home page) on their blogs and web pages. 

The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative auctions small quilts the first 10 days of every month. Please visit us to see the quilts in the January auction and to participate in the online auction.  

AQI Logo Learn More About Alzeheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

Blog  Facebook Twitter Website Auction

 

Read more smaller nonprofit stories.

Being At The Social Media Party You Could Not Attend

10/03/2010

I am still learning. ~ Michaelangelo

GraduationCapToss Tossing our graduation caps into the air doesn't mean our education is over. Instead it signals a different type of learning. It's a learning that we now pursue without the structure of a formal syllabus .. which is constructed by someone whose ideas of what we need to know may not be the same as our own.

Especially in a field that is emerging, like social media marketing, it's important to learn from peers who are willing to share real life experiences. Traditional books, publications and industry associations were always the main stay. Then the world wide web added articles and content we could access 24/7/365.

However, it's the social web that is the game changer. Social media is providing peer-to-peer exchanges, through tweets, blog posts/comments and status ups.

We now have access to, dare I say the word .. industry experts. Frequently, these "pros" (in the truest sense of the word), who we might have seen at a conference or read their books, are giving us more ... free and freely. Via social web content they are providing additional value; often they join in community discussions and answer specific questions. 

One of my favorite ways people are creating nontraditional learning experiences is sharing information from conferences through tweets, blog posts, Facebook updates, etc. Call it being at the party you couldn't attend

Tweet_laurencoppage feeling like there

Recently I had the honor of chairing the AiMA (Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association) social media meeting. For a fun learning, along with a bit of wrap around content, here are some of the tweets that were shared from the event. #aima

Ed Garston, head of electronic media for Chrysler, and Rick Short, marketing communication director at Indium, a global B2B company, not only presented innovative campaigns and uses of social media but shared results. 

Tweet jumboshowjoe prominentplcment case sutdy

Social media is different than traditional or Interactive marketing. It's based on a long-term customer-brand, value proposition, delivered through digitial conversations in public forums. Success comes through understanding how to represent your brand promise within the unique culture of social media.

Tweet julie _ sm respectful not over market

However, getting started, either in a business-to-business or business-to-consumer environment, can present a challenge if management and/or your employees don't understand the benefits. Ed and Rick shared a few practical suggestions:

Tweet kyharrison grow web presence into community

Tweet mastermindings sell internal

Tweet chandrathompson competition

Tweet lynnrfrances _ answer today to questions tomorrow

Twitter toby_ chrysler recap

Tweet rebeccachander _ part of campaign not entire campaign

Tweet rmcferrin jmarie83 _ presence established

As our speakers reminded us, at the end of the day, it's not about playing with new shiny toys but about producing business results based on goals and objectives. 

Tweet cmorocks doncare about sm about $

Tweets also provide an opportunity for community members to contribute their own thoughts to the digital stream, often resulting in virtual sidebar discussions.

Tweet oliviapatrick _ comentary

How are you continuing your learning? 

Holiday Shopping In Your Bunny Slippers

11/28/2007

With Black Friday the doors to the official holiday shopping frenzy begins. Don't want to leave the comfort of your computer screen? This Monday the virtual world joined the party with Black Monday.

Christmas and Kwanzaa may be a month away but Hanukkah is only 2 weeks off. Eeeek! The first candle is lit on December 3th.  Read more: History of Holidays

Bunny_slippers Holiday shopping in your bunny slippers suggestions ..

Marianne Richmond's Holiday Gifts for Media Snackers: A Top Ten List of Online Subscriptions has suggests from Food - Zagat: Access to ratings and reviews of 30,000 restaurants, hotels, and attractions worldwide all for $24.95. Access on your Blackberry, Treo and many others is $29.95. To Photos - Flickr Pro for $24.95 per YEAR for unlimited storage, uploads, and just about everything you need to be connected through photos 24/7. And More!

Books and more books written by bloggy friends in 2007.
Sidebar:
If you've written a book in 2007 that would make a cool holiday gift please add it to the comments.

Business
Take Care of the People who Matter Most - A guide to Employee-Customer Care by Sybil F. Stershic
This is a must read for anyone who is interested in the heart of your brand/social media .. your employees.

Age of Conversation,the book written by 103 bloggers from around the world, goes from a limited reach on LuLu to Amazon.com on December 1. However, with the expansion of the distribution channel comes an increase in the price. From $16.95 to $30. It's not a Scrooge act but a to ensure that the Variety, the Children's Charity, maintains a significant donation (all profits). Also note the hard cover will be discontinued.

Now Is Gone by Geoff Livingston A good balanced overview of social media marketing that includes lots of case studies from B2C, B2B and not for profit organizations.

Lead With Your Heart by Lewis Green I have not read Lewis' new book but if it is anything like his blog and our conversations it will be a book that combines head and heart .. and that is business at its best.

Career Development/College Students
Brazen Careerist: The New Rules For Success by Penelope Trunk Not only is Penelope's book a great read for people entering the work force but should be mandated reading for anyone who works with the millenium generation.

Inspiration
I'll Do It Myself by Glenda Watson Hyatt This book will tug on your heart strings but leave you feeling that anything is possible if you have a dream. Dream BIG!

Young Adults
Undercover by Beth Kephart I fell in love with this book from the first page. Beth's talent for painting with words is pure delight to the reader. Although the book was written for teens it's a hidden gem with lessons for adults as well.

Sharing a meal is one of my most favorite ways to spend time with friends. However, sometimes time and distance make that challenging. Food gifts can be a lovely way to send that comfort with a touch of elegance. It shouldn't come as much of a surprise that GourmetStation's gifts are among my favorites.  By the way Delicious Destinations Blog includes wonderful guest bloggers from England, Tuscany, Paris and the States who talk about food, wine, travel and culture.

Unique gifts

Design Sponge - Design sponge is still my fav blog for unique, creative ultra cool. Be sure to check out the 2007 gift guide: $50 and under.

American Feast - Gifts from American kitchens and farms. Everything American and food in one virtual world.

Theraplex skin lotion -  Developed by a Swiss doctor for dry skin conditions this one surprised me. It's a silky feel lotion that is lovely for any skin type especially sensitive skin and great for winter dry skin.

Retail Design Diva - Some shopping links but for the marketer lots of information about the retail world!

Bloggy disclaimer: Relationships lead to friendships lead to work lead to even a blog post. I know or have done business with all of people that are highlighted.

AMA - Beyond Marketing 2.0 Hot Topic

09/20/2007

Ama_20_hot_topic On the AMA road again with BBFs Dana Van Heuvel and Bill Flitter. This time we are talking about not only blogs but social media .. from Second Life to widgets to how to ensure that social meets begins to get the respect we believe it's due as a credible marketing strategy.  It was great fun talking social media with so many great people.

Next Stop: Chicago on October 26th. Next Next Stop: Las Vegas on November 9th. More Information.

Dana posted many of the links that we talked about today; it's a great resource for all.

The following are some questions along with responses that came out of the session.

B2B Versus B2C Blog Strategy/Expectations

Q: Is there a difference in expectations between Business-to-business versus Business-to-consumer blogging?
A: B2B may not receive as many comments but the bloggers may receive more direct emails. Especially if the industry is very competitive your community may not want to engage in direct comment conversation. Including an email link is critical .. funny to me how so many business blogs don't add an email link as a way to contact the blogger/s.
A: The credibility of B2B bloggers should be established. Build blogger profiles to include both professional credentials, as well as, a bit of personal background. Of course, since this is part of a blog the tone will be conversational not corporate speak.

Widgets

Q: What makes a widget a widget?
A: Dynamic content, download-able, interactive (does something), pulls content from a feed

Q: Widgets - do they require any behind the scene manual maintenance?
A: Nope .. or not usually.
A: Widget distribution directories: Facebook, Widgetbox, Snipperoo, Clearspring
A: Widget code is not universal. For example the widgets created for Facebook can not be added to a blog or website.

Q: Are widgets and other social media tools 508 (handicap) compliant?
A: Widgets do not appear to be; however, since blogs are websites they (blogs) could be made 508 compliant.

Content

Q: How much of your content came from your head alone to the outside?
A: As you continue to blog and build community ideas come from other people within your community who link to you and comment; also ideas come from other bloggers who write on similar topics who are also part of your extended community.

Blog Platform

Q: What are some blog platforms?
A: Hosted Solutions
Blogger
Blog Harbor
Typepad
Non Hosted Solutions   
WordPress
Comparison chart - hosted and non hosted solution

The Nay Sayers

Q: What do you tell people who say I can't see the relevancy .. I don't get it.
A: Start with your customers. As with any marketing strategy, it comes down to the supremacy of the customer and what the customer wants. It's not about you.

Updated: Interesting interview with corporate CEOs on negative comments

Q: How do you get people to come to your new blog in addition to search engine?
A: Social media press room - Shift Communications
A; Anyway you promote a website you can promote your blog.  Add to your email signature, your business card, collateral  materials, send emails or direct mail to your contact list.
A: Social media optimization: tagging, del.icio.us account, blog directories, claim your blog in Technorati, join your community in conversation including linking and trackback, widgets.
A: Hold a launch celebration and invite your bloggers, staff, customers and friends to an in-house party.

Q: In healthcare do customers trust peer-to-peer or medical sites/blogs?
A: Post on Diva Marketing links to research done by Economic and Research Council.

Friday Fun: School's Out For The Summer But ..

05/25/2007

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.

.. The Learning Doesn't Stop!

A few weeks Abc_1ago Drew McLellan, The Marketing Minute, invited a group of talented marketers to write a few Insights From The Other Side to help give College Grads A Fighting Chance as they enter the competitive job market. The free little eBook is a quick and inspirational read. Download a copy and use as a graduation card.

Insights is also great for anyone who is between gigs or just needs a shot of atta girl .. you can do it! Special thanks to Drew for inviting me to join in on this project. Toss of the pink boa to all of the authors who contributed!

Aaron Potts Andy Brudtkuhl Andy Nulman Andy Wibbels Ann Handley Ann Michael Anne Simons BeckyCarroll Bob Glaza C.B. Whittemore Carolyn Manning Chris Cree Christine Brown CK Darren Barefoot
David Reich Delaney Kirk Derek Tutschulte Designer Mike Doug Karr Doug Mitchell Drew McLellan
Joan Schramm Kevin Hillstrom Lewis Green Liz Strauss Mario Sundar Mark Goren Mark True
Mary Schmidt Nick Rice Patrick Schaber Paul McEnany Phil Gerbyshak  Roger von Oech Rosa Say
Seth Godin Sharon Sarmiento Stephanie Weaver Steve Miller Steve Sisler Terry Starbucker
Toby Bloomberg Tony D. Clark Valeria Maltoni

Shh! Here's a secret weapon for every person entering or in the job market now. I have to whisper this one Girlfriend because this could be what helps set you apart from the maddening crowd. Although it's not very bloggy, I don't want to tip off your competition. 

Penelope Trunk at Brazen Careers. Penelope's blog is over flowing with down-to-earth advice and information on what to do on your way to your career, on the job and in between gigs. But there is more. Penelope writes in a story style (Valeria you'll appreciate this blog) that is engaging, fun, smart and oh so well .. Penelope Trunk.

Brazen_careerist_2 Penelope Trunk's just released book Brazen Careers is more than just advice to the job seeker. If you want to understand what is important to Gen X and Gen Y in the workplace and how Gen X and Gen Y defines success this book is a must read.

June is book tour month. Drop by and say hi, pick up a copy of Brazen Careers and be prepared for a fun, smart and oh so well .. Penelope Trunk time. 

June 4, Atlanta
A Cappella Books
484-C Moreland Ave NE.
Atlanta, GA 30307
404-681-5128

June 7, New York City
Tequila Jack’s
1668 Third Ave
Between East 93rd and 94th
(212) 426-1416

June 11, Boston
Location TBD

June 18, Tampa
Inkwood Books
216 South Armenia Avenue
Tampa, FL 33609-3310
(813) 253-2638

June 21, San Francisco
Location TBD

Sidebar: Interested in the youth market? Fleishman-Hillard's blog The Nex Great Thing focuses on that very subject.

Astrology business astrology for fun -
from The Astro Divas Paula Dare & Donna Page

Mercury enters Cancer Mon. 5/28. It can be difficult for the mind to be objective in the watery emotional sign of Cancer. Feelings may get in the way of logic and be the cause misunderstandings especially with family members. If you have siblings, don’t be surprised to hear “Mom always did like you better!” It maybe difficult to concentrate on work as your thoughts may drift to the past around home and family or to thoughts of all the housework you need to get done.

The Full Moon in Sagittarius falls on Thurs. 5/31. Are you taking care of your physical being? The body needs the proper nourishment and exercise for optimal health. We need the wholeness of body, mind and spirit. It is a good thing to try and achieve a balance of the left-brain and the right-brain.
Look for activities that stimulate the reasoning and logical side with the creative and intuitive side.

This Full Moon is a Blue Moon. It is when there are two Full Moons in a calendar month. It only occurs approximately every 41 months. Since it doesn’t occur often, hence the expression “Once in a Blue Moon.” Since this Blue Moon occurs May 31 in our time zone (Eastern), it may occur in June or July depending on where you live.
 

Conversations About Conversations

04/22/2007

People are talking.Age_of_conversation And Drew McLallan and Gavin Heaton are giving the world something to talk about --  I'm honored to join over 100 of the most innovative and caring bloggers, in our industry, who are contributing a chapter to an eBook project appropriately titled, The Age of Conversations.

This project is from the heart on three accounts. One - it will provide a treasure of information about social media from people who are passionate about this emerging industry. Two - it is dedicated in memory to my BBF CK's mom. Three - The monies will be donated to Variety, The Children's Charity.   Contributors
Gavin Heaton
Drew McLellan
CK
Valeria Maltoni
Emily Reed
Katie Chatfield
Greg Verdino
Mack Collier
Lewis Green
Sacrum
Ann Handley
Mike Sansone
Paul McEnany
Roger von Oech
Anna Farmery
David Armano
Bob Glaza
Mark Goren
Matt Dickman
Scott Monty
Richard Huntington
Cam Beck
David Reich
Mindblob (Luc)
Sean Howard
Tim Jackson
Patrick Schaber
Roberta Rosenberg
Uwe Hook
Tony D. Clark
Todd Andrlik
Toby Bloomberg
Steve Woodruff
Steve Bannister
Steve Roesler
Stanley Johnson
Spike Jones
Nathan Snell
Simon Payn
Ryan Rasmussen
Ron Shevlin
Roger Anderson
Bob Hruzek
Rishi Desai
Phil Gerbyshak
Peter Corbett
Pete Deutschman
Nick Rice
Nick Wright
Mitch Joel
Michael Morton
Mark Earls
Mark Blair
Mario Vellandi
Lori Magno
Kristin Gorski
Krishna De
Kris Hoet
Kofl Annan
Kimberly Dawn Wells
Karl Long
Julie Fleischer
Jordan Behan
John La Grou
Joe Raasch
Jim Kukral
Jessica Hagy
Janet Green
Jamey Shiels
Dr. Graham Hill
Gia Facchini
Geert Desager
Gaurav Mishra
Gary Schoeniger
Gareth Kay
Faris Yakob
Emily Clasper
Ed Cotton
Dustin Jacobsen
Tom Clifford
David Pollinchock
David Koopmans
David Brazeal
David Berkowitz
Carolyn Manning
Craig Wilson
Cord Silverstein
Connie Reece
Colin McKay
Chris Newlan
Chris Corrigan
Cedric Giorgi
Brian Reich
Becky Carroll
Arun Rajagopal
Andy Nulman
Amy Jussel
AJ James
Kim Klaver
Sandy Renshaw
Susan Bird
Ryan Barrett
Troy Worman

A funny little website called a blog just might turn out to be a business women's new best friend. - Blogs: A Business Women's New Best Friend

In the meantime, if you want to know more about the business aspects of blogs, you might enjoy the article I wrote,We_magazine_2 for WE Magazine For Women, an online publication from WECAI. I talk about how blogs can build trusted relationships leveraging the 3 Connecting Cs of New World Business Success: Collaboration, Communication, Cordiality.  Pages 15-16. Blogs: A Business Women's New Best Friend,

Thanks to Heidi Richards, founder of WECAI an amazing internet learning experience, for the opportunity.

Update: Blogs: A Business Woman's New Best Friend
Download blogs_a_business_womans_new_best_friend__1.pdf 
Download blog_a_womans_new_best_friend_2.pdf

Strategic Approach To Biz Blogs

11/05/2006

Blogging is complex, and each company approaches blogging differently.
                    - Northeastern University/Backbone Media Blogging Success Study

The quote, from a recent study conducted by Northeastern University/Backbone Media Blogging Success StudyEllington_surveys, is near and dear to my heart. The research validates what I've been talking about and have believed since waaay back in 2004 .. Her passion for blogging is as a marketing tactic. This revealed a different perspective from that of most bloggers we asked." "Naked Conversations - Consultants Who Get It" by Shel Israel & Robert Scoble.

  1. Blogs/social media can be used as a credible marketing strategy
  2. To be successful blogs must incorporate a strategic direction

Within a very short time .. less than 2-years .. the website with the odd little name - "Weblog," better known as "Blog" is becoming a sophisticated, marketing strategy with multiple aspects.

Four Aspects of Business Blogging

  1. Authoring a business/marketing blog
  2. Using blogs as an external promotional tactic
  3. Monitoring blogs as a research tactic
  4. Reading blogs to gain professional development knowledge

Should your organization include a blog strategy? If you're considering stepping into social media I would ask you to answer just two little questions to determine if you're ready to jump into authoring a corporate blog

One: Can your organization support the open, conversational, transparent culture of blogging?

Two: Will blogs help solve a business challenge or support your overall marketing strategy?

If the answers to Both are Yes .. you have a good chance to succeed. If either one is No .. the timing is not right .. yet.

Don't be discouraged or feel badly. Social media is a huge paradigm switch in business attitude. It can be a challenge, and leap of faith, for some people to accept that business as usual is changing. In a world of easy online publishing (blogs, podcasts, vlogs) the marketer's job has morphed from tightly controlling the brand messaging to managing the brand message. Your company will get it .. sooner or later. If not, Girlfriend, you might want to consider creating a living bio blog <wink>.

However, while you're working on internal issues you can begin to participate in the conversation by reading blogs and monitoring the blogosphere for customer buzz about your brands and for industry trends. When you feel comfortable drop a comment on a blog and see where it takes you. Ta da! You are now an active participate in the exciting world wide discussion. Your opinion is part of the the biggest knowledge base ever invented .. the world wide web. But no time to sip an appletini - tho a quick bite of chocolate might be in order to celebrate. There are more blogs to read and more comments to write.

What determines the reasons, conditions and factors that make a blog successful? What criteria should organizations use to assess whether and how they should engage in blogging?

These were the objectives in the Blogging Success Study released Nov 2, 2006 by Dr. Walter Carl, the students in his Advanced Organizational Communications class (Spring 2006) at Northeastern University and John Cass and his colleagues at Backbone Media, Inc.

Toss of a pink boaPink_boa_17 to Dr. Carl and John Cass for providing the research and the background interviews. Not only is this an great start for businesses to begin to understand how to do blogs right but the interview transcripts provide an in-depth look at the lessons learned from the participants who were early adopters to business blogging.  Interesting note: the research/findings report are posted on a blog with each section as a unique post. Comments are open on all posts. You rock!

Blog Brags: My dear friend and client Donna Lynes-Miller, GourmetStation was included in the study. Donna continues to do innovative work in this space. Delicious Destinations includes a series of guest bloggers: an English butler, a Tuscan B&B owner, a wine consultant and a customer who share their experiences about food, travel, wine and the good life.

Rick Short, Indium Corporation (Rick Short's Blog,Dr. Lasky's Blog)and Deb Franke and Jim Cahill, Emerson Process Management (Emerson Process Experts) were participants in the American Marketing Association's Hot Topic Workshop: Blogs Beyond The Website that I had the honor and pleasure of chairing.

Bottom-line .. without a strategic approach and integration into your overall marketing plan a blog is a me too play toy. Which is fine if all you want is to be cool at cocktail parties. 

Sidebar: The graphic is a cartoon that was made for my mom and dad's marketing research biz - Ellington Surveys. As you can tell fashions have changed as has the market research industry.

Friday Fun: Talk Blogs In Your PJs

10/27/2006

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.

It's a rainy Friday in Georgia and the weather guy says the storm is moving east towards the coast and then on to New England for the weekend. What do you do if you want to stay warm & cozy and Bunny_slippers wear your bunny slippers all day but still be productive?  Have I got a deal for you!

Tomorrow, Saturday 10-28 the WECAI Network™ is sponsoring an all-day Teleconference Event to "Help Women Do Business On and Off the Web."  Heidi Richards, Founder & CEO of WECAI asked me to put together a panel on business blogging: Harnessing the Blogosphere, the Future of Blogs and How to use them to Promote Your Products, Service or Organization.

The alone title called for ultra cool Divas. So I asked some of the smartest women working in social media to hang with me Saturday am and talk about one of our fav subjects - blogs!

The conference runs from 10a - 4p and includes 6 teleconferences/webinars covering: email marketing, affliate marketing, PR. how to create a marketing plan.

Heidi is charging a small fee of $47 to cover expenses. You get access to all sessions, access to the audio recordings so you can listen at your leisure, all Resources including a 40+ page Workbook, eBooks, Worksheets and eGuides. 

If you're around Saturday morning between 11:20a - 12:10p (and not at a Georgia Floria Game tail-gating party!) pour another cup of coffee and hang out with the Marketing Divas!

Astrology_15 business astrology for fun -

from The Astro Divas Paula Dare & Donna Page

Get ready for the fun to commence. Mercury goes Retrograde tomorrow 10/28. If you have any contracts to sign it is advisable to hold off until after Mercury turns Direct 11/17 at 7:25 PM. If you wonder why you’re having computer problems, people are taking everything you say the wrong way, your flight is delayed, your luggage gets lost, your car breaks down, you just maybe feeling the effects of the Retrograde cycle. This is a great time for sales people to reconnect with customers.

On Sunday Neptune turns Direct. Allow the creative juices to flow. Let your imagination take over and write down all of the things you would like see changed in your business, no matter how way out there you think it may be. Then you can go through your list of ideas and get to work.

RSS = Ready For Some Stories

09/27/2006

For me, RSS, Real SIMPLE Syndication is the power behind blogs. But explaining it was alway far from Simple. Until that is Stephanie from Back in skinny jeans (Love that blog title!) took a very  out-of-the-box divaish approach. She thought how would Oprah expain RSS?

 

In Oprah speak, RSS stands for: I’m “Ready for Some Stories”. It is a way online for you to get a quick list of the latest story headlines from all your favorite websites and blogs all in one place.

Rssforoprah_1

 


 

By the way, while your on the site take a skip around .. lots of interesting content.