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I cannot believe that it has been over a year since I made my last blog post. I apologize to those who have followed me because I “had” some cool things to say. I will try to keep those types of posts coming, now that I have some more time on my hand.
For those of you who may know me, or follow Zynga, they closed their Boston office a few weeks back. While I had a feeling that something was coming, I actually thought that I would be ok, since I was assisting the Baltimore studio with a new game launch. Unfortunately that was not the case, and I was released of my duties.

Over the past 3 weeks I have really begun to think about my next move. While I have been involved in Social Media and Online Community Management and Sales for the past 14 years, is this something that will last? Something that has longevity?

Then I really got to thinking…..and said HELL YES!

As everyone in the field knows, it encompasses all aspects of Job titles & responsibilities. From Marketing, to Project Management to Customer Service and Public Relations, Social Media and Online Community professionals are being successful with all types of job responsibilities.

It is really time to harness our uniqueness and leverage that for our benefit. While my next position may not be a “Social Media Strategist” or “Online Community Manager”, you can bet that I will be leveraging my learnings over the past 14 years to excel at it.

* Thanks to http://markitors.com/ for the “Unique” image

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1st off let me say that this is not a sour grape post, as Miami beat the Celtics in pretty much every aspect that they could. From their inside game to their hustle, they were definitely the better team in this series

The other day I tweet’d, “Act like you have been there before”. The post came about after I was watching game 4 of the Celtics/Miami series. Chris Bosh made a nice dunk in the game, towards the end of it and raised his hands like he was preaching, freaking out and shaking his head. Did he not remember game 3 where he did not play that well? Now don’t get me wrong, I am all for celebrating, but there is a time and place, as well as a timeframe to celebrate within. After say 10 seconds of celebrating, which is a pretty good amount of time, it is then time to get back into the game, and move on to the next play.

Fast forward to last night. Miami is on a huge run 16-0 run in the 4th quarter to end the game. Within that run, LeBron hits his 2nd huge three point field goal. Great shot, nice celebration at first. In watching LeBron and the close up that the TV had of him, he takes a good 4-5 deep breathe’s, staring at the crowd, does not move from his position – and don’t forget, the C’s are inbounding the ball, pushing the ball up the court with him standing there. Yes that was the dagger, but celebrate like you usually do and jog down the court. Don’t forget, this is the same guy who refused to shake hands with Orlando in the Eastern Conference finals. Hmmm, makes you wonder about his character, especially after what he pulled with Cleveland (media or not).

Notice that you did not see Dwayne Wade pull any of these stunts, he just played his game, which is F-I-L-T-H-Y! – in a good way

Again, it is just a matter of  “Acting like you have been there before” – but I guess that when it comes down to it, you need to have been there before in order to understand how to act. That is what separates “the Men from the boys.”

After reading (and seeing) the story around Derek Jeter pretending to get hit by a pitch and taking 1st base, it got me to think of a quote:   “If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying hard enough.”

That is simply something that I do not agree with, as is this one: “The customer is always right.”

I was trying to think of others, but instead of racking my brain anymore, figured that I would throw it out there to get your thoughts. What are some quotes that have you scratching your head? Please share them here! As always, thanks ahead of time.

Wow, Yelp, FourSquare, Gowalla and now Facebook gets involved in location-based services (lbs).

I don’t like it and do not think that I will use it (outside of my initial test). Why you ask? Well here goes.

I am a member of numerous Social Networks for a reason. Facebook for my friends and to keep in touch with others acquaintances, LinkedIn for my professional relationships, Twitter to keep up with industry information…the list goes on. Now there may be overlap between my friends, my co-workers and my business friends among these channels, but in general, there are distinct reasons why I keep them separate.

FourSquare is my tightest network, meaning that I do not friend people who I do not know, or have never met. I have only “friended” 57 people. While I have 600 “friends” on Facebook, some that I have not seen since grammar school/high school, I do not see the need to allow them to see my each and every move. I have ignored requests from people who I am connected with on Facebook and on LinkedIn when they request to be friends on FourSquare.

I really wonder what the adoption rate will be on Facebook. Now if I could put specific people within my Facebook Network into a group, and only share my “Place” with those people………What do you think, Will you use Facebook Places? Which way will you go?

Last night I attended the #NashuaTweetup and sat down with @SteveMurthey at the bar. We were talking about Social Media experts and how there seems to be so many “self-appointed” individuals out there, as this seems to be the latest and greatest employment opportunity for many. During our discussion, I came up with this comparison. It is like in the movie Aladdin. You had the Genie, who was obviously good at what he did. He knew the rules and was able to guide Aladdin into making some good decisions, and had “thousands” of years of experience in his back pocket.

* namecartoons.blogspot.com

But on the other hand you had Jaffar, and his snake staff. The staff was an incredible tool which mesmerized people and forced them to make decisions that they would not have if they had a better understanding of the situation and were guided properly. He also made promises that he could not keep, and there was always a “hidden agenda.”

 

* disneyvillains.net

Next time you sit down with some who is assisting you in anything, it does not have to be strictly a Social Media campaign or strategy session, make sure that you are not being promised things that seem unreachable, and make sure that you partner with someone who has proven their worth and has the experience to back it up. Don’t forget, you generally get what you pay for. What are your thoughts?

HTC-Droid-Incredible

HTC-Droid-Incredible

I have been waiting and waiting for the Verizon/Apple relationship to come together so that I could get an iPhone. Over the past few years I know many people who have one and love it. Unfortunately, AT&T’s coverage in “South-Central” New Hampshire is not great, as I get little to no coverage at my house.
So here is my new phone. Just received it last night. I am currently charging it up and am waiting to actually transfer my contacts over, but I am a little intimidated by it. As with something that it new comes a hesitation. I am so used to my Blackberry curve that I am intimidated by this new device. I know that it will support all of my needs, but how steep is the learning curve for this device? This evening I am planning to actually activate the device and put my Blackberry to rest. It will be a sad day, but one that is needed. If you have made it through this transition, please share your experiences here. Was it painful? Painless? What are some of your tips/tricks? Which apps do you find impossible to live without?   Please help me 🙂

Back in the day, you could run your business the way that you wanted to with little to no interruption from anything or anyone. Everyday you could get up, go to work, and status quo would rule your day. Or at least that seems to be the perception from what I have heard and observed from the “Walk-both-ways-uphill-in-driving-snow-to-school” generation.

As we all know, times have changed, and that way of running your business gets you into serious trouble. Customer’s now have the ability to voice their opinion in open forums where millions and millions of people can read their thoughts. The playing field has been leveled and businesses no longer have the control that they have held on to for many, many years. Those that have adopted new communication strategies and have engaged with their audience are surviving the current storm, while those who have rejected this communication change as a passing fad have come to pass.

Customers have the ability to really jump-start your business and get it back on track. If your employees seem to be struggling with what they should be doing, or where their next project to come from, they should look no further than what is happening online – both what is being said about your business as well as what is being said about your competition. There is so much information at your immediate disposal; so many great ideas that you can harness….it really is a great resource. I have also heard of some businesses offering their employees “free-time” during their work week in order to think of new ideas and ways to improve the current state of their company. What a great idea.

The Fountain of Success

Please drink up!

Ok, I had to share this. I tweeted a couple of times over the last week referring to this story, but wanted to go into more depth here.

Twitter is a great tool for people and businesses; I think that everyone will agree with that. It is also a great tool for local businesses, if used effectively, and I wanted to share this story with you.

Early last week I was traveling to Calgary, Canada from Boston via Dallas,( please don’t ask, it’s a long story). While in flight from Dallas to Calgary American Airlines offered Gogo in-flight wireless internet service so I decided to pay the $10 to have it for the 3+ hour flight. For those of you that have not traveled with internet access on your flight, I compare it to JetBlue and having TV at your seat, yes, it is that good and I don’t know how I could have ever lived without either, anyway…..

On my way North, while traveling over Yellowstone I sent the following tweets:

What was really cool was that within a half hour, the account @Morningglorycof replied to my tweet:

I replied with “ I wish that they delivered” with a smile and then that was that, or so I thought.

Or Friday, I ran across this tweet:

It was really nice of them to do this, as I have never met this person and we had only exchanged a handful of tweets. I also decided to follow them back just in case I was ever in Montana. But the story does not end there.

On Friday we had friends that were going to Canobie Lake Park  up here in Salem NH. It is basically 6 Flags (www.sixflags.com), but on a much smaller scale (maybe 10% of 6 Flags). Anyway, we let our kids go during the day with our friends and met then at 5:30. Upon arrival at Canobie, I checked in on FourSquare and posted it to my Twitter account. Within a few minutes I received this tweet:

Is that a small world or what? Talk about chance encounters. I am sure that they also had a flood of memories outside of the one that they posted.

So with this post I wanted to bring about your Twitter stories. What are the “chance encounters” that you have heard of or actually been a part of? Please share.

Follow me

This seems to be a pretty important step in making sure that you can weed through the noise in the space. Some people follow too many people too quickly and become overwhelmed, while others take it slow and easy their way into Twitter, which I highly recommend.

Let me tell you what I do, and see if it is also what you do.

I seem to pick up a couple of followers. I go into Twitter’s website, rather than use Tweetdeck for this, and see who has most recently followed me. There are a few things that I key on when I click on their profile to see who they are:

Where are they located?

While being able to located current and accurate information concerning my profession on Twitter, as well as with former colleagues, I also like to keep up with people who live in my area, so I tend to follow them as well

What does their Bio say?

No bio, no follow, it is pretty cut and dry. If you can’t give me additional information about yourself, then how and why do you expect me to follow you? Come on, seriously?

How many followers do they have?

I am not talking about focusing on the numbers. If someone follows me, I tend to take a look at who they are pretty quick, within 24 hours I would say, unless it is the weekend. I tend to look at the box of avatars. There are 36 avatars within that area. If I am located within that area, odds are that you are not a spammer and are not just trying to friend anyone and everyone.

Maybe the last one is just me, but I feel that if you are following 36 people within a 24 hour period then you are just trying to get friends and not really caring who they are?

Too harsh? Thoughts? What do you look at?

On May 11th, Bill Simmons (@sportsguy33), Boston Sports writer and ESPN page 2 ‘The Sports Guys World creator, created a new Twitter account, @celticschants. The account was set up for sports fans (mostly Boston Celtics fans or anyone that was against Cleveland) to discuss potential chants for when players were fouled and stepping up to the free throw line. If you have watched basketball before, you know how fans can be with chants, and waving things. And as much as I hate to give credit to Duke, their fans are the most obnoxious.

Last night, while I was watching TV, I heard the chant of “New York Knicks” when Labron James stepped to the free throw line. Each and every time. It was loud. Even the announcers were talking about it. Now he did not miss all of his free-throws, and he did have a triple-double, he did go 9-12 from the line, missing 3 attempts. Being a .742 career shooter from the free-throw line, he was right on par. But who is to say that he would have missed those if the fans were not chanting?

Anyway, I like that this “grass-roots” idea came about, was promoted and discussed and took flight. It really goes to show how Social Media can be taken off-line. What are your thoughts? Did you watch the game, or have you seen this type of execution recently?

Employment

I am currently employed at Autodesk as a Senior Manager of Online Community and Social Engagement. My team is responsible for the Customer Support initiatives across all of our Social channels.

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