Pro-tips to maximize social media marketing

I subscribed to Ragan’s PR Daily years ago. Ragan provides timely insight into the current state of PR and it’s related fields.

Lauren Friedman just posted “3 tips for creating a real-time marketing command center“. Her points are spot-on. Read the article! However, here’s the  highlights:

  1. Social Media marketing/PR is about engagement (sorry for the buzzword, but it’s important to get this). Listen to the audience, read hashtag threads, know what the discussion is about and your relevance to it.
  2. Know your market! How is your audience going to respond your commentary. And, sometimes, silence is valuable. One doesn’t need to be involved in every high-profile discussion, and at times it’s critical to steer clear.
  3. Teamwork: having valued “ears” you can bounce ideas off “right now” is valuable. Diversity is key to those teams, ensuring you avoid the tone-deaf statements.

So, take a minute and give it a read.

The independent artist and social media

Earlier this evening I attended a performance by Aaron Strumpel at my church. Talking to the musicians afterwards, I was reminded of several ways that modern technology is changing the music business. Yeah, there’s tech impacting performance, but that’s not really what’s got me jazzed right now. No, it’s the way the music business is transforming due to social media.

Artists like Amanda Palmer and Zoe Keating have carved a living out of the modern music business. They’ve mastered an evolving toolbox that revolves around social networking. Interweaving websites & blogs with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, KickStarter, Patreon, along with such classics as email. With a blend of genuineness and talent, they’ve built a worldwide fan base who delight in any opportunity to assist these artists they love. Ultimately, the key is a genuine delight in their fans. By loving them, taking pleasure in the interaction, these fans are passionately in love.

In Amanda’s book she talks about selling 10,000 albums (which her label defined as failure) and 10,000 Kickstarter investors. In so many ways, 10k is not that dramatic. But she’s been able to leverage and engage that audience. If she was simply making a living, that, to me, would be glorious success. However, she’s been able to launch some very innovative and novel projects. A success beyond measure, in my eyes. And her audience is intimately involved, more than the fundraising. An additional layer of richness.

This plethora of tools speaks to opportunity. Opportunity which excites me; I see great things arising. And I both look forward to witnessing the glory of what’s coming, and taking part. For I always seek to be part of cool things.

Twitter, Facebook and the next thing

I’ve thought a bit lately about social media platforms. For me, Twitter seems to becoming more dominated by brands and “community” profiles. Most of my recent new followers have not been individuals, but brands/services. But that’s really only a piece of the pie.

From a US/western cultural perspective, Facebook and Twitter have probably hit their highest volume. I expect there’ll be incremental growth, but the ability to really leverage these two mostly consists in engaging folks already there. And there’s the digging through the morass of content; EVERYONE is on Facebook, nearly everyone is on Twitter (at least as far as brands go).

There’s something to be said, though, for being part of a community as it launches. Early users of sites that become popular end up with richer connection opportunities. Now, the glorious question is “what’s going to be the next big thing?” Welp, god knows. The best way is to be dipping your proverbial toes in everything, which is what I try to do. Whether Instagram or Snapchat, I’ve made it a point to explore them. I also make it a point to keep “young folks” in my life, and ask them what sites/apps they’re using.

No, I’m not projecting the death of Twitter, or Facebook. I do see these platforms evolving, though, and somewhat stagnating. For me, I want to be aware of what’s coming, where the cool kids are. Living ahead of the curve has been a desire for ages. As much, tech-wise, as my budget allows. By establishing presence on newly minted app and web goodness, I seek readiness to pivot as the winds of social media life flow.

Real Estate Learnings And Wind Storms

Yesterday was an interesting one. While sitting in a clock hour class up above downtown Everett, our region’s windstorm made it’s presence well known. Quite the bluster! Even in the 6th floor of a modern high-rise, we could hear the wind. My friends and family came through reasonably unscathed, most injurious were power losses and fence destruction.

With the storm, traffic was significantly eventful and my poor instructor quite late. I took the opportunity to chat with many of the good folks at Everett’s First American Title office. Such great people! A few folks I’ve known for years, but have never met. Such is the nature of modern business!

Our class covered the Escrow Process, where we focused on several key changes and issues facing this sector. One of the biggest: cyber-fraud.

I’ve been hearing an amazing number of cases of spoofed, or near-spoofed email addresses where funds are redirected. With this, we covered ways in which our business is responding to better protect your information.

Also, we looked at the way the CFPB’s new disclosure rules are getting implemented. The mortgage industry has taken this very, very seriously and implemented (for the most part) solid processes to keep closing timelines solid. Each lender has their own process, which is complicating things. And we’re having issues with certain folks not respecting the amount of time it takes the other players to act (“yeah, it closes tomorrow, here’s our stuff at 6pm. Too bad you don’t have time to get all your work accomplished. It’s your fault, of course”).

Anyway, always trying to learn more. Real Estate is vibrant and ever changing business. It is one of the things that delights me about it.

Some thoughts on garages

Walking this evening, I was looking at these houses in Lynnwood. These houses from the 50s and 60s garages have itty bitty garages. Today’s cars don’t fit. And I remember those 50s, 60s, 70s vintage cars. They were a tad bit bigger than cars today. Clearly, garages were for storage, not auto storage.

Anyway, I’ve been around these houses most of my life. I’m rather fond of them, quirks and all. Actually, the quirks add delight, to me, at least.

Despairing For Humanity, Seeking Hope

Murder in Paris, rage boils over on the internet. I sit next to a Muslim friend while the vilest invective floats through my phone, rationalizing his death. The perpetuation of this murderous cycle. The cries against Muslims vary only slightly from the cries for the blood of the westerners. Their hearts are the same. Their heartbeats pulse from the same rage.

“Love your enemies as yourself”, and many other such words of Jesus, ignored by his followers. Rage so dominant a drive, we lose track of compassion and dignity. 

Over the course of the evening, I couldn’t stop watching or reading. I ran head long down the most horrible of rabbit-holes. Laden with brutality, with disrespect, frothing with corrosive invective. Chasing down other topics, equally ugly, our inability to dialog with other views. Both sides, neither able to express themselves gracefully, and each descending fast into the realm of personal insult. There were voices of reason, generating hope for me, for humanity. 

However, this mad blast of rage gives me deep pause. I will not be part of this brutal back and forth, of name calling. Empty posturing. Pretty much nothing of substance. I think I shall post peace centric messages: Jesus, MLK, Rumi as a response. And work to add thoughtful, graceful dialog to this swamp of outrage. 

Upon The Horizon – Posted to Medium, And Other Life Update

Just posted this on Medium: Upon The Horizon. Quite pleased with this one. Came to me during my walk this evening.

It was good to be able to walk today. Last week, I wrenched my right arm and back at the gym. Rather intense pain drove me home from work early on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Saturday was spent planted firmly upon the couch. Sunday was punctuated by vertigo, leading me to a walk-in clinic, several appointments early in the week, a sinus infection diagnosis, and a battery of medications.

Now I’m feeling more pain-free, and dizziness-free. Satisfying progress, though incomplete. Shortly, I’ll be consuming my next blast of pain meds and drift off to sleep. Looking forward to the next day, this Friday approaching.