Archive for the ‘social media’ Category

12 Simple Actions for 12 Happy Months in 2010 – Happy Holidays!

December 23, 2009 Leave a comment

The holidays are a great time for relaxing, thinking about friendships and accomplishments from the past year, and planning a new year of action!  So  this holiday “card”, is my gift to you: some good causes, some items for your action list, some new friends, and some topics for your blogs next year!  Here is a link to a PDF version of the card for your download pleasure:  xmascard2009_2010.  You can also click on the photos to read the details then check out the list below to hyperlink to the goodies.  Enjoy, and may all of your holiday wishes come true!

Here are the hyperlinks to help you check out and implement each of the actions!


Check out this carbon calculator (UK)


Help prevent malaria by donating a mosquito net

This photo is one of the shots that you’ll find on the Unicef New Zealand Flickr Site:

And here’s where you can donate!  Please go to the Unicef Under Cover Malaria Net Fundraising site and donate a net!


For good exercise for a good cause check out Team in Training,

For good eating check out the Slow Food organization


Check out the Malama Loyalty website and reflect on how you can inspire loyalty


Act locally!  This year I helped ATCAA, a local community action organization increase their outreach and efficiency.  Take action during the holidays, volunteer your time locally!


Check out the Academy of Sciences San Francisco Sustainable Building

And get some tips for sustainable living


Check out the blog by Siobhan Bulfin, who is changing the world of connections:

The photo pictured here is one I took this year inside of the Sydney Opera House.  Come see us in Sydney in April 2010 for the Connect Now conference to learn how to find and promote your superheroes!


Check out the video promo, Bringing Community to Broadband


Check out The Reckoning Film

Find out more and participate in the international justice debate on the website below:


Here’s the site for a course that I teach at the Grenoble Graduate School of Business

You can see the profiles of some of the amazing students here:

Here is an educational website set up by one of the students:


Go out and hyperlink live with your loved ones to celebrate the holiday season and the arrival of 2010!

Wishing you a fantastic holiday season and a very happy new year!


Is Your Business Social Media Ready? Take the Quiz!

August 25, 2009 Leave a comment


For the following statements, select True or False.

  1. Real stories from your customers have more impact than your crafted marketing messages
  2. Your business self-promotion is losing its effectiveness
  3. Relevant marketing content is getting more attention than linguistically perfect content
  4. Your influencers have a more powerful voice than your communication agency
  5. You believe that well earned customer loyalty is more valuable than price discounted loyalty
  6. Your online networks are gaining share of voice
  7. You trust your customers to communicate about you
  8. You have an online place to engage with your fans
  9. You feel that listening is at least equally important as talking
  10. You are able to measure the above to determine if they are true or false

If you answered most of the questions as True, you are truly social media ready.

If you answered all of the questions as True, talk to me!  Let me know how you do it!

Welcome Marketing NOW to Get Business WOW


Congratulations!  If you’ve already signed up, you’ve made a great (shall I say life changing) choice!

Check here to check out the programme!

The Social Media Live! workshop is going to be  a blast… no secrets to divulge yet but stay tuned!  I look forward to seeing you in Wellington!


This blog is your educational playground.  Feel free to browse around and discover what’s wrong with this blog.  Because yes, there is a LOT wrong with this blog  — as well as some things that are right –and after the workshop you’ll have a good sense of the difference! Leave a comment!

Holy eBay Robin, Social Media’s got my Batbelt!

Batman is a superhero known for his analytical detective skills and using tools on his famous batman utility belt to handle all sorts of challenges from the villains.   Ah, as if all you have to do is add “bat” in front of a tool and it becomes unique, special, just the right tool for the job.

Today with a bat-iPhone utility belt armored with a bat-map, a bat-calendar, bat-Twitter, bat-Skype and bat-internet we can handle all sorts of challenges from the communication cost and time villains.  And even more interesting, with today’s bat-tools we no longer need to shine a bat-signal into Gotham City for our communication, we’ve got bat-e-Bay!

Bat e-Bay can be used to auction something unique to a very large audience of which a small population would be highly interested — something like a 1966 official Batman Utility Belt.

batbeltPermission for photo graciously provided by e-Bay seller where the item is auctioned

The batman utility belt is an excellent  long tail example:  no longer is it a detective challenge for the likes of  a superhero like Batman to find the right pool of potentially interested purchasers.  Social media casts a huge net and the villains of cost and time are easy to fight.  Yep, bat-times have clearly changed and the distribution bat-channels have also changed tremendously.  Though if you are looking for souvenirs of the same bat-time at the same bat-channel, stay tuned cause bat-social media’s got your back.

A Family of Influencers

March 30, 2009 1 comment


Online social communities are powerful marketing allies!  I’m currently surveying people registered for the Marketing Now! event in New Zealand to find out about the social communities they are interested in developing.  Most of the responders so far reported that they are interested in developing a loyal community or community of influencers.  Who IS this community of influencers and how do you find them?  Well it may be that some of your best influencers are the ones close by in the gene pool — your family!  Ah, do I hear you mumbling that mixing business and personal Facebook friends or Twitter followers is like blending oil and vinegar for you?

Well I have been recently enlightened by spending time this week with my family of influencers:  my parents (in the 80’s age range just to give you an idea) participate in forums with their friends, use search engines for most of their info gathering, and check ratings and comments for most of the restaurants they try or videos they rent.    They’ll probably read this blog post and send a link to their friends.  My sister practically lives on her iPod – buys and comments on apps, contributes content to music communities (the group Cake in particular), downloads books and videos and follows on Twitter.  My brother is a photographer and uses Flickr to post and get comments on his art.   And the next generation of my family takes it to the next level!  Faren has helped create an open source health research community and Lucille is building one up as a wellness examiner!  And that’s just the start of it…  My family is and has the potential of being a powerful community of influencers as I am for them.   They are the first ones to think about for potential  comments, diggs, bookmarks and community influence… and they may be the easiest to engage.

So next time you are on an airplane and the announcement reminds you to look around because the nearest emergency exit may be behind you, remind yourself to also look around because your nearest community of influencers may be right behind you, or sitting next to you, and they may know about sites with good floor lighting to help light your way.

Oh, and for the curious minds, I’m the one smack in the middle of the photo above.  iPod girl (left) and photo boy (right) practiced influence skills at an early age.

Business “Almanac” for 2009

January 1, 2009 Leave a comment

What would you put on your calendar if you had 12 months for a picture, a remembrance, a verse? I’ve reflected back on 2008 to share some once-a-month lessons for 2009!



In January last year I had 3 project proposals under client evaluation and I could have won any of them… or as it turned out ALL of them. They often say when it rains it pours, and it was snowing… So I spent several weeks in the Sierra Foothills planning precisely what, when and how I could manage to be in several places at the same time and deliver top quality while keeping my sanity.

Moral of January: A Plan in Hand lets you Expand



I love saving up all the year’s business cases as well as my own lessons learned to bring them to the Grenoble Graduate School of Business for the Management Consulting Tools and Processes course! In 2008 students were from Angola, Canada, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, India, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Russia, Serbia and the UK. Add up the countries where the students lived and worked and the international and cultural diversity of the group is impressive! Then create culturally diverse teams and give tough assignments, and watch the energy and ideas begin! 100% survival rate. I can’t wait to return next February!

Also in February, I went to Barcelona and spent several days interviewing more than 71 Telecom businesses from all over the world at the Mobile World Congress. The business shared some astoundingly diverse new product and service ideas, a world of creativity! At the end of each day my smile hurt, as did my feet… fortunately there were tapas!

Moral of February: Avoid Adversity, Embrace Diversity


In March I had the opportunity to teach Interactive Marketing / Web 2.0

to a fantastic group of executives. I also had the opportunity of sharing my experiences in marketing in an advanced professional marketing module for masters students. It costs so little to be generous with your lessons learned. Wikipedia is still free after all. From new caves in second life to new models of sustainable development, a world of ideas is out there to explore and share.

Moral of March: He Who is Wise, Shares the Prize


April signals the end of snowboarding and not yet the beginning of hiking. Temperatures can be freezing or perfectly warm — rain, snow, sunshine and everything in between. In April, the intensity of teaching and traveling turned into writing reports and grading papers, then from working in front of a computer all day to working with a view of the ocean on the island of Maui….from studying databases to studying marine life face to face. Fluctuations are normal, enjoy them!

Moral of April: Establish your Missions and Respect the Transitions



You know that life’s not all that bad when your market research and PR work takes you up a few thousand feet… in this case high above Yosemite National Park. It sure was a lot easier getting to the top of “Half Dome” by airplane than it was years ago when I had to spend a day to climb up by cables. The view from the top is so different from the view from the valley. It’s great to change things up for different viewpoints.

Moral of May: Avoid the Subjective, get Perspective


In June I was in a plane, train, bus, metro, taxi, working in Paris, in London and in Grenoble. It was one of those months that you avoid checking out your expenditure on one of those carbon footprint calculators. My only consolation was knowing that we were keeping eco neutral by growing biodiesel fuel back on the ranch. Clearly, there are times when there are a lot of things to do and places to be, and in those times it’s important to expend what is needed but conserve energy along the way.

Moral of June: Energy Saved is Well Behaved



A gorgeous view of a Parisian full moon captivated me one evening, so I quickly grabbed my point and shoot camera and clicked a perfectly awful shot (not pictured here). Then Stefano Candito simply showed me how to slow down, rest the camera on the bridge and slow the shutter speed – something I would have never done in my rush through life. Astounding quality results ensued.

Moral of July: Take the Time, Results Sublime



August in the Sierra Foothills was a month of tomatoes. Fortunately, not people throwing tomatoes at me, but rather tomatoes in sauce, tomatoes on the grill, canned tomatoes and dried tomatoes, a full Slow Food bounty from mother earth! But it wasn’t just the tomatoes that were abundant this year, peppers, aubergines, fruit and herbs, a veritable daily feast! Sometimes the compensation you receive from doesn’t come in the form of salary, it may be a bit sweeter… with seeds.

Moral of August: Perfectly grounded, harvest unbounded


It seemed that I spent most of September talking: presenting to a team in London, leading a team in Germany, speaking to a team in Paris. Well at least that was the way it seemed because in fact I spent most of September listening. Just because I may find myself standing in the front of a projection of slides doesn’t mean I have to be the one doing all the talking. Sometimes the collective knowledge of a room of people can be harvested by actively listening to the various viewpoints in a group and simply publish them with a collaborative tool such as Google Docs. A pretty cool technique, though if you do end up trying active listening with a spouse or partner, I would leave off the publishing part…

Moral of September: To Help People Glisten, Just Give a Listen



By the time October rolled around I had spent so much of the year on planes that I looked for emergency exits and tried to fasten my seat belt every time I sat in a chair. With all of the jetlag and disorientation I felt more influenced by altitude than attitude. It was a good lesson to remember happy daily attitude, especially with the people around you.

Moral of October: For Every Frequent Flyer Mile, Give a Friend a Great Big Smile


What happens when you open your eyes and ears to the ideas of friends and colleagues in your professional network? New projects and new opportunities! And for me, these opportunities abounded in November.

Networking isn’t just about what you can get, it’s also about what you can give, so think about some great people and projects you can promote such as:…contrary to their name, this company is GO. You heard it here, Chuck LeBeau is a financial genius.

And I dare you not to cry when you view the reel at Vine Street Pictures… I already KNOW the ending and I still cry each time I see it! There’s hope, there’s talent and the power of emotion…

Moral of November: For Those Whose Work you Greatly Respect, Spread the Word and Help Connect



I recently read a book, I think it was The Long Tail, that featured over 2 pages of acknowledgements at the end. I wondered who would ever read all those acknowledgements, and then I read them. And it got me thinking about how rarely we write down all our thanks and publish them. So I’m doing it.

Moral of December: When Given help to Actualize, Don’t Forget to Recognize

First and foremost thanks to all the folks at Central Sierra Connect, ATCAACETF, CASF, County ISPs and residents who are going to soon bring high speed internet and a working mobile phone to the underserved communities (including my office).

Thanks to all of the Management Consulting, Customer Intelligence and Interactive Marketing students who continue to challenge and inspire me, and continuously ask for endorsements. Special thanks to interactive marketing expert Siobhan Bulfin and Web 2.0 expert Andrea Alfieri for shared appreciation of SEO.

Grosses bises to the Grenoble Team plus Bruno and your neverending supply of coffee, sofas, computers, coffee, storage, sports equipment, rides, food, euros, friendship, laughter… did I mention coffee? Merci mes amis, je vous embrace!

Love to all of my family and friends for helping me solve problems and supporting my independence. Hey I did manage to get to San Diego, Chicago AND Hawaii Crosts all in one year!

Love to Team Colorado for helping me solve problems and supporting my independence and for pardoning my inability to manage to get to Colorado in a whole year.

Bravo and felicitations to Vincent for bringing home a gold AND a silver medal from Beijing!!!!


Muchos gracias to team Barcelona (Mun and Sergi and Virginie) for an intense job well done!

Kudos to Amoks and HyperObjects for your e-finesse and 100% responsiveness.

Merci for the talent and hard work and patience of all the team at Venise in Paris (Lionel, Silvia, Jerzy, Marie-Agnes, Laurence, Barbra) for an exciting place to work (and sleep), fantastic challenge, and my first job as a top model.

Grazie Grazie to Team Italia who taught me a new language through the thrill of gelato, the delight of pasta, the rules of football and the true meaning of piccolo.

Thanks to the all the Chi-Towners who allowed me to reminisce, work, eat more “sensible portions” and celebrate the 4th in home town style.

Thanks to all of my 2008 enterprise clients for outstanding opportunities to collaborate and share business ideas over a teleconference, a drink, a meal, or a very large Oktoberfest pretzel.


Thanks to VineStreetPictures, TwistStudios, SierraTrek photography and Ferme Gabert who graciously allowed me to exchangetheir business lessons with the masters students.

Thanks to all the team at Courtney for the miracles you perform to fight fires and the time you took away from airplanes and wrenches to build new business.

Thanks to volunteers at Craigslist Foundation, Taproot, Focus, Slow Food for sharing precious time for precious causes

Thanks to the impressive talent and energy of the team and a brilliant solution to buy and hold…and the world economic crisis.

Thanks to San Francisco, Chicago, Maui, Paris, Grenoble, Barcelona, Montpellier, Frankfurt, Lyon, Amsterdam, London, Munich, D.C., Los Angeles, San Diego, Redding and the Central Sierra for allowing safe transportation, a home in your city for whatever length of time, and access to touch the lives of your precious people.

Holiday Interactive Stuff

December 25, 2008 Leave a comment

2009Here are some links for your holiday enjoyment

Some ideas to get you dreaming…

Learn to Dream

Then turn those dreams into real goals

Create your persona

And manage your cookies

Tune your management skills on Santa

And Celebrate the New Year