Archive - February, 2010

A New Perspective for Facebook Fan(s) Pages

Facebook_logoA client recently launched a Facebook page a bit different than the norm. Instead of a fan page for her business, she is creating a fan’s page for her community.

I threw this idea on the table a few weeks ago on Twitter (and again today) when discussing how community can be built in the classroom like some well known communities where the community has a “sense” of ownership and assists in co-creating the voice and verve of the conversation.

If the “fans” area can be such where the content (video, discussion, etc.) is provided by the community, with possibly a “community leader” to guide things forward — I think this type of community thrives (especially if/when they can gather offline periodically) longer — sometimes longer than the brand or business (right Trekkies?)

The Facebook Fan pages I see and get invited to now…well, I know it’s a numbers game for some and for other folks, they aren’t to keen to send invites because they don’t even think they should have a “fan” page. However, by making the goal of the Facebook Fan page to be a section for and by the community (with the business or brand being the “Fan of the Community”), now we may have something.


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“I Dunno, Let’s Find Out” Gets a Talk Show

I'm about to embrace an OS!M

Here's a wee bit of a promo for my new talk show on World Wide Local Live, Monday – Friday from 6am-7am CST.

We'll be talking about Learning and Applying, Imagination and Curiosity (Imaginosity), and the science of experimental failure (which will probably happen a lot the first few days of the show). Join in via livestream to chatter up. Soon, we'll be able to do video interviews — hopefully using Skype or ooVoo — to hear about what you're doing.
Hope you'll join in the conversation!

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3 V’s of Victorious Verbosities

V3 Here's a three-step checklist to make sure your content is consumable:

  1. Valuable: Your stuff better have value for someone besides you. In other words, them (or if you're really doing it right — us, which should include you). What's valuable content?  Well, your customers and readers are great folks to ask. Find out what they are reading, and why they are reading it
  2. Viewable: While you're creating valuable content, let's also care for the consumption of your content and the brains of your audience. Make sure it's digestible and easy to navigate. Would you take the time to read your post or watch your video during your busy day?
  3. Viral-able: This is the most important of the three! You must make your stuff easy to share and spread, If you don't, who is your audience (you alone?) and how will any ever know about your stuff? Make it easy for your audience/community to "sneeze" your stuff outward and spread the virus of great content.

Of course, a bit of Vaudeville (humor – thanks to Right-In-Tool for the add via Facebook)

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Happy Birthday ConverStations: Bring on the 5th

It's funny. When a person has been alive for four full years, we say they are "four" for the following 365 days. Yet when a business is alive for four full years, we celebrate their 5th year in business for the next year. Either way, today, this blog site enters it's 5th year of conversation.

Together we've seen many changes on site and off site. Relationships have been amplified (and some silenced). Tools and toys have come out rapid-fire, but talk has always preceded tech

To help mark that event, I thought I'd repost the five most important posts — not the most popular, or the most sarcastic, or the prettiest — but the five most important posts within these pages.  Hope they help. Here's to five more years (thanks for being a major part of whatever success the site/message/conversation has had):


Blog Posting: Give 'em Eye Rest

We're scanners. Our eyes move fast and furious trying to capture all we
can in a short amount of time.  Just as the best road trips have rest
stops along the way, the best blog posts have eye rests along the way.

Give your audience one (or more) eye rest stops in your blog posts.

  • Images – I always encourage placing the image to the
    right. Why?  We read left-to-right. Unless the image IS the story, let
    it be an eye rest. It will enhance – and maybe even compel more
  • Bold Text – As scanners, we're flying through text. Especially with longer paragraphs, publish a money quote in bold text.
  • HyperlinksHyperlinks are valuable to everyone involved, and the value for your reader is twofold: 1) They can dig deeper into the subject and 2) the change in text is an eye rest
  • Lists – Short bullet or numbered lists are always good for an eye rest.

Which article are you more likely to read and remember?

This one:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Pellentesque
molestie neque nec ante. Pellentesque dui ipsum, porttitor vel,
placerat sollicitudin, venenatis ut, dui. Praesent erat arcu, molestie
sit amet, interdum in, nonummy pulvinar, nibh. Mauris imperdiet
condimentum nisi. Donec eu turpis non leo nonummy sollicitudin.
Vestibulum ante ipsum primis in faucibus orci luctus et ultrices
posuere cubilia Curae; Integer justo lorem, sodales sed, mollis at,
gravida viverra, diam. Donec nibh leo, scelerisque sed, cursus et,
venenatis scelerisque, erat.

Or this one:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Pellentesque
molestie neque nec ante. Pellentesque dui ipsum, my money is on the second one, venenatis ut, dui. Praesent erat arcu, molestie
sit amet, interdum in, nonummy pulvinar, nibh.

  • Mauris imperdiet
    condimentum nisi.
  • Donec eu turpis non leo nonummy sollicitudin.
  • Vestibulum ante ipsum primis in faucibus orci luctus et ultrices
    posuere cubilia

Curae; Integer justo lorem, sodales sed, mollis at,
gravida viverra, diam. Donec nibh leo, scelerisque sed, cursus et,
venenatis scelerisque, erat.

Give your readers an eye rest. They're more likely to remember what you wrote – and therefore spread your words.

Photo on Flickr by imadoofus123


Purpose Driven Blogging

Before we begin blogging, I ask each person/company I work with to answer six questions:

  • What are three main goals for your business?
  • What are three business objectives for your blog?
  • Who is your audience? (Prospects, Current Clients, Colleagues, Internal)
  • Are you targeting a national or regional audience?
  • How do you want your audience to respond?
  • How much time are you willing to devote to the conversation?

These questions have given pause to some business leaders – and
that's a good thing.  Tonight, I'm going to start giving the following
two posts as handouts (after I get permission from the authors):

  1. Kami Huyse provides The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Blogging. Great Purpose Statement, Kami!
  2. Martin Gordon elaborates on Steve Rubel's 4 P's of Blog Marketing
    - and here's why the elaboration works. I still run into old school
    marketers who are looking at the traditional 4 P's. Combining Steve's
    outline and Martin's elaboration, there may be less of a battle.

If you're trying to convince your company to being blogging, grab these posts.

One other note: Both Kami and Martin included a comment of
mine within their posts. That's how I found them. That said, this isn't
just a reciprocal posting – their items are keepers.


Mingle With Your Audience

In Get Out From Behind the Counter, we talked about eliminating barriers from our customers in an offline setting.


As business bloggers, it may be more of "Get Down Off the Pedestal", remembering to get out into the audience once in awhile. Off the stage, into the audience.

In a recent workshop, while I was in front of the group, the mood was a bit…tense (Technology Blinders?).
We came to the point of building a quick blog site. I went into the
audience so we were all looking from the same view. What happened?

The mood quickly changed.  We were all on equal ground.  Just as it should be.

So get out from behind the counter, get off the pedestal, mingle with your readers. They won't bite.

Pick a Post of Poetry

Over the years here on this site,
I've occasion 2 post a thought in rhyme
A different way to present a message,
tho hoping for smiles each time.

So here as we begin our journey anew
Thought we'd look and reflect what's behind
Maybe get a bit inspired by the old
Or possibly new jazz we'll find.

Reading with Ears Wide Open (posted 9/19/2009)

Let not your eyes wander,
Put your mind at ease
Lend your full attention
Just listen for a bit, pretty please?

In the marketplace of old,
Conversations all about
and the only hogs allowed
had short, smelly snouts.

No soapboxes to climb upon
if you tried that, you talked alone
An equitable level of engagement
Would set the proper tone

Seek first to understand
A habit amongst the great
Likewise in the blogosphere
Eyes & Ears wide open an important trait

So with patience, fully listen
Go ahead, take your time
Premature response formulation
in some communities is a crime.

Energy + Urgency = Passion (posted on 5/5/09)

Some people are loud in their passion,
Some are passionately meek
Their eyes tell the story
The fire in their belly is what I seek

I teach people to use these tools
that allow their voice to reach ears all around
and enhance the engagement and connections
and here is what I've found.

Give me the one that believes so much
in what it is they have set out to do or be
In those their voice will be embraced
As far as ears can hear and eyes can see

Give me those that believe there are others
who want to accomplish a thing or two
to change things for better around and about
they'll find a community that sticks like glue

Are you one of these world changers?
There's always room for one more
One who believes in others first
their ideas will always soar

Do you have the energy?
Is Urgency one of your senses?
These together create a passionate pace
Find that – and you'll hurdle all fences.

Love is Only a Smile Away (posted 01/16/09)

The loving look of a smile
With a still moment of pause
To show the passerby
They're important to your cause.

Whether young or old,
Citizen senior or Gen Next
Doesn't matter their race or religion
Nor does it matter profession or sex.

To take but a moment
With all the muscles in your face
And let that person know
You're glad to find them in this place.

There are no coincidences
Only the illusion of chance
And the loving look of a true smile
Will make even the coldest heart dance.

So if it's on your blog or your phone
At Panera or on a tweet
Take a moment and smile a real smile
To all who cross your path – online or in the street.

Photo on Flickr by cmaccubbin

The Battles Hymn of the Blogger (posted 08/09/06)

If your blogging becomes a chore,
Something you dread to do.
Be slow to blame the blog
Because maybe it's just you.

This doesn't happen to everyone
But maybe you're battling Blogger's Block
Stop trying to strike gold with each post
or you'll find yourself losing to the clock.

Maybe you fear nobody's reading your stuff,
They're there – if not today in the morrow
Write as if you'll always touch someone
Stop wallowing in self-sorrow.

The best way to Manage Your Writing
Is pen to paper, finger to keys
Once you get a rhythm
You'll find yourself posting with ease

Central Iowa Blogger First Friday: Bring Your Announcements #CIB

Just a friendly reminder of the calendar turn – it's 1st Friday of the month tomorrow. We'll be gathering at Panera U (map to 6740 University Ave, WDM) around the 8am-10am time.

Great networking, storytelling, ideations, and a fantastic example of the blogosphere come to life.  A few announcements sure to be made this week too.

Hope to see you there.

FollowCentral Iowa Bloggers (#CIB or Derek's CIB list on Twitter)

Revisiting and Reflecting on January Posts Past

Sometimes a reflection on the archives is a great rekindler of thought, or a chance to update your thinking (if you're always learning, that is). Here's a visitation of past posts from the calendar we just flipped over:

January 2010

January 2009

January 2008

January 2007

January 2006 

  • ConverStations was just a thought in my head at this point. We launched this site in mid-February of 2006.

Exploiting Chaos as Example Blog Posts (Great Content too!)

For the past few months, I've suggested the book Exploiting Chaos so much, people are telling me I'm repeating myself.

It's not just the content I'm evangelizing (and it's fantastic), it's the style and design — a great example of a blog writing (web writing?) practice. Let's look:

Emotional Headline; short paragraphs; eye-resting use of font changes and bullet points; bottom line take-away; great image. Nice!  If it had a hyperlink, it would be a perfect post — but hyperlinks in books aren't really here yet. 

You can download a sample of Exploiting Chaos in PDF format to go a bit deeper, or just buy the book.I know I'd suggest it (at least twice)


Other places and faces behind the book:

TrendHunter site
Trendhunter Facebook
Trendhunter TV
Trendhunter on Twitter
Jeremy Gutsche's Twitter