Monday, March 31, 2014

Mihai-Cristian Micle does it well with freshome

[Mihai-Christian Micle] says: “Since 2007 the internet has evolved massively, and the competition is much more fierce. Developing a website that is compatible with multiple devices including mobile devices, and the way that you market and promote your website, across so many social networks, is completely different. 
“Although entrepreneurs today have so much more information available on how to create, promote and grow a blog, doing it is so much more complex than it was in 2007. I’m glad I did it when I did.” 
There are lessons to draw from this Forbes article on Micle - A 'Fresh' Approach From The Romanian Entrepreneur Who Made Blogging Pay:
  • Whatever you blog about, it must be something you're innately passionate about.  Even though my time is pressed, I find myself compelled, even pulled internally, to blog about things that matter most to me.
  • The route to success is often circuitous, often a matter of stops-and-starts.  Issues and problems will arise, so solve them step by step and keep going forward.  From changing the size of YouTube videos on Blogger, to uploading photos on Tumblr more efficiently, I've managed to figure things out. 
  • So much of success seems so accidental, or fortuitous, or simply lucky, in retrospect.  That may very be the case.  But I'd like to believe that there is purpose to things, and maybe fate has a hand in what happens.  I often reflect on this, and pray to God for guidance and support.

Friday, March 21, 2014

How LinkedIn works, what's in it for you (3)

Before showing the business members the Nike image, I asked `What was Step 3?  Now that they clarified what they were trying to accomplish on LinkedIn and now that they had created their roadmap for accomplishing it, what did they have to do next?

Simple, right?

Apparently not for a lot of people, who seem to stumble or fall short of doing what they need to do to reach their end.  Step 3 of The Core Algorithm is virtually a workshop in itself, as it's where the rubber meets the road, as they say.  But in brief it's about (a) knowing your abilities, motivation and energy and (b) doing only what works for you vis-a-vis that end.  We get so caught in advising others, and conversely following the advice we get, that we lose track of what really works best for each of us.  Navigating LinkedIn, and making it serve their purpose, is no different.  Each of them has to figure that out.

Some Do`s are (a) clarifying their purpose, before jumping in; (b) creating the right roadmap for getting there, and keeping things simple and effective; and (c) participating realistically and engaging actively.

Some Don't`s are (a) spamming others with impersonal messages or generic sales pitches; (b) just liking something, that is, without actually reading a post or viewing a video; and (c) trying to do too much at one time. 

Finally, I said, on social media, we learn that we have to allow for the obligatory cute cat meme.  

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

How LinkedIn works, what's in it for you (2)

Step 2 is about laying out the roadmap to reaching their end in mind.  The Core Algorithm recommends a walk backwards process to map the pathways, beginning with those actions or activities that have an immediate impact on reaching that end.  Then, they walk a step back further to identify intermediate impact actions or activities, which lead to or give rise to that immediate impact.  Finally, they identify catalyst impact, that is, those actions or activities, from where they are in the present, which get them moving in the right direction.  

The point of K.I.S.S. is to make sure the roadmap is practical and actionable as well as correct and effective vis-a-vis their end in mind.  There is so much about LinkedIn to learn and do, but again I kept things basic, so as to level the playing field for the business members in attendance.  I encouraged them to be patient, for example, and create their profiles over a number of sittings.  It took me several efforts to get mine to where I needed it to be, and I was happy to share that for 2012, my profile was among the 5% most viewed in 200-million member community.  

The fact that those on LinkedIn have greater discretionary income was of interest to business members, and the fact that job seekers and recruiters alike were on LinkedIn was my way of encouraging them even more strongly to get on LinkedIn, too. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

How LinkedIn works, what's in it for you (1)

This is the slide deck from a talk I gave last week to a Lunch and Learn networking group at the Lake County Chamber of Commerce in Illinois.  The purpose to talk about the fundamentals of LinkedIn, in an effort to level the playing field for members, but also to allow for questions from more seasoned, sophisticated users of this social media.

I covered the first three points, right as I walked everyone on the agenda, then spent the rest of the talk delving into the second three points.

The Core Algorithm is a practical applications model for doing things and getting things done more effectively.

It seems so easy for so many people to just jump into task, and therefore neglect the all-important first step of clarifying what they're trying to accomplish.  Business members, I said, can call it purpose, target market, or vision, but it's all about knowing as crystal clear as possible what their endgame is, where they're driving to, and what they want to make a reality.

As it relates to LinkedIn specifically, I prompted them on what that purpose might be for each of them.  Then, I gave them a little bit of time to reflect and note it.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Levi's does a promo video superbly

This is a pair of Levi's®,
buttons and rivets and pockets and cuffs,
and the thread that holds it together.
When the road gets rough and the sky gets jumpy and the stars start falling on top of your head and the waves start breaking against your legs;
It's the thread in your seams that's tied to your dreams.
It's the sole in your feet that keep the beat;
You're gonna be great, you're gonna be great, you're gonna be great;
You're gonna find the cure, you're gonna be famous, you're gonna be shameless.
Spittin' seeds in the wind, tap dancing with your shoe laces pinned, to the back
of a bus at the end of the road, at the bottom of the ninth, with a crown on your head
You're a queen, you're a king, you're the solo act in a sold out show at a six story stadium, and you're proud, you're a hero! You got a hero's grip. Swingin' by a
single stitch. You follow your heart, follow the leader, you're the leader;
Are you joking, are you breaking, are you shaking? You're the next living leader of the world. You're a kid. Holding onto the thread. That holds it together. 
This is a pair of Levi's®
This is easily one of the best, most creative commercial videos I've seen. 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Patrick Willis and Duracell: Great things

Duracell proves the importance of the power inside by telling the story of all-pro linebacker Patrick Willis. His personal journey to the pinnacle of the NFL required the ability to power through obstacles and a steadfast and unwavering belief in himself. His story is remarkable and inspiring and further proof that with the right stuff inside, great things are possible.
The first time I saw this, I didn't know it was a Duracell commercial.  It was inspiring to be sure, and I thought it was an ESPN piece on Patrick Willis.

A brand has quite a few promotional options.  The owner can sponsor a sports event or figure, which another organization arranges for.  The owner can choose a theme and story that fit the brand perfectly, then create the video himself or herself.  Or the owner can simply point to whatever is up and about, online or in person, and associate with it.

Regardless, I love this piece.  Kudos to Duracell.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Ian Rappaport is up for whatever with Bud Light

Definitely I'd be up for whatever, too, if whatever were Minka Kelly, Don Cheadle, and Arnold Schwarzenegger.  Want to know who the lucky dude was?  Meet Bud Light’s Ian Rappaport, who’s up for whatever.

This is obviously a very involved setup, and it's not an everyday thing for a small business owner to enlist celebrities in his or her promotional video.  But if you're game, we'll use our imagination and come up with something for you.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Stars who nabbed top Oscars for acting

Lupita Nyong’o
Cate Blanchett
Matthew McConaughey
Jared Leto
Finally, from Sunday, March 2nd 2014, here is the Wall Street Journal: Oscars 2014: Live Blog.  There are plenty of photos in the blog, including four stars who nabbed the coveted top Oscars for acting (above).  

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Ellen DeGeneres pulls off an awesome selfie

Ellen DeGeneres & Co. at the Oscars on March 2nd

Here is Extra's own live blog of the Oscars this past Sunday, March 2nd 2014Oscars 2014 Recap: Ellen, Speeches, Winners and More!

I love the fact that DeGeneres hosted this event.  She's quirky yet endearing, and while she may occasionally poke fun at people, she avoids the biting sarcasm that seems de rigueur for hosts.  She is by and large a lady whom scores of people love, because she is generally nice and engaging.

What's more, DeGeneres seems hip with the times.  So in one interlude she arranges to have pizza delivered, and many of the stars join in.  She even asks the delivery man, "Who's your favorite movie star?"      

In another interlude, she asks the stars, "Who will get the most retweets?"

But best of all was the awesome selfie (above) that she pulled off, Bradley Cooper doing the honors of snapping the shot.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Fug Girls live-blog the Oscars

(image credits)

The Fug Girls are Jessica Morgan and Heather Cocks, and while fug probably refers to "fucking ugly," the bloggers suggest it's actually "fantastically ugly."

In any event: The Fug Girls Are Live-Blogging the Oscars Red Carpet.  For fashionistas, the Red Carpet is often a captivating pre-show show.  

I like the idea of live blogging.  Twitter, and other social media, are certainly forums for running commentary on a major event.  But doing on on a blog adds a twist of intrigue.  A blog is like a diary that a blogger shares.  

So imagine Morgan and Cocks writing in a physical diary, and we gather around them, maybe hover over them, to read what they write, as they write it.      

Think about doing something similar, the next time you hold an event for your business, brand or organization.