Category Archives: Just Sayin

Social Media Etiquette for Everyone

This is a brief post about some things that you really shouldn’t do on Social Media. It applies to companies as well as individuals.

What NOT to do on Facebook:

Social Media Etiquette from theBREWROOM

One of the things that bothers me the most is when people announce major life events of their friends on Facebook before the actual person gets a chance to announce it.

A friend had a baby recently, and someone went and posted this information on Facebook – tagging the friend and his wife in the post – and announced the birth of the child, as well as the name! If this were to happen to me, I would be furious! Sure, it’s Facebook and you shouldn’t take it too seriously, but… there are things in life that are important, and only happen once. You only have your first child once. You only get to notify your family of your child’s birth once. Don’t ruin an exciting moment for your friends and family because you’re excited that you just became an aunt or uncle. Have some respect for you friends and let them tell the work their exciting news in the manner that they choose.

Lesson: Do not spread your friends’ news unless they ask you to!

What NOT to do on any Social Media Platform:

Don’t just post one word blubberings…

For example:

“Seriously?!”
“What?!?!?”
“Fail!”

Nobody knows what you are talking about. If you want people to talk to you about something, bring up the actual subject of the conversation.

Lesson: If you want to talk about something, talk about it…

Don’t Complain, complain, complain…

Some people use social media as an outlet that allows them to complain about anything and everything. Don’t forget, once you post it, it’s out there, and you can’t guarantee that you will able to take it down, or take it back. If you’re going to complain and someone or something, make sure you’re willing to accept the consequences of your actions. People and companies that post positive messages generally receive a better response and more (positive) interactions.

Lesson: You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar!

Don’t be mean!

People have become really mean on social media these days. It’s like the separation caused by the keyboard and the screen from the actual public makes us think that our words and actions don’t have an effect on others… or maybe it makes us care less about their effects.

Lesson: People in front of their feelings have feelings too… not just when you are mean to their face.

Have any other advice for people? Post them below in the comments, or send them to me and I’ll update this post and credit you!

Networking: Top 10 Tips

Business Networking Tips
Networking has never played a bigger role in the job market than it does today.

With thousands of unemployed (but qualified) professionals in the market, competition for jobs is fiercer than ever. It’s not enough to have a college degree. Heck, not even a masters degree is enough anymore.

Finding a job comes down to you: your personal network and your unique value proposition.

Networking GroupAs an enthusiastic young professional, I’ve had my fair share of networking experiences. While each experience is slightly different (the size of the audience, the type of crowd, the style of event, etc…) there are some basic tips to keep in mind regardless of the opportunity to find yourself in.

  • Prepare: It’s not likely that you’ll get a job offer (or even an interview) at a networking event. However, it can’t hurt to be prepared. Read up on the professionals attending and have a one-minute elevator speech, business cards* and some examples of your latest accomplishments ready on hand in the chance that you get to make a “pitch”.
    *Be sure to carry your business cards in your breast pocket so they are easily accessible.
  • Dress the part: Dressing up makes you look good and professional. When you look good, you feel good. When you feel good, you’re more likely to come across as confident. People gravitate towards people with confidence.
  • Show up early: Arriving early to a networking event is a much better idea than showing up a few minutes late. Events are usually less crowded early on which makes it easier to find people who aren’t already engaged in conversation. Similarly, arriving early will help ease your butterflies if you’re a nervous network-er.
  • Networking Tip - Don't Be ShyDon’t be shy: Don’t wait for someone to approach you to start a conversation. Take initiative! If you see someone you would like to speak to, go introduce yourself. If that’s too daunting, ask to be introduced to someone through a mutual connection or try walking up to a small group of people and ask if you can join their conversation.
  • Ditch your expectations: Attending a networking event isn’t going to get you a job immediately. The best way to approach it is to go in without any expectations.
    *Remember: this isn’t a sales pitch; it’s an opportunity to make a positive or memorable impression and get the conversation started.
  • Listen: Find a good balance between talking and listening. Don’t just talk; converse. When you listen attentively, you absorb — you can use the knowledge you absorbed to further foster the relationship.
    *For example: try to use the other person’s first name a few times during the conversation. (People like hearing their own name and it’ll help you remember it once the conversation is over.) Also try to remember something specific about each person you meet; you can include it in your follow-up with them. Remembering the little things goes a long way in showing that you’re someone who is engaging and interested in fostering relationships.
  • Be passionate: Excitement is contagious. Win people over with your excitement over your ideas. Talk about what you enjoy doing (and why,) and ask others to do the same.
  • Relax: A smile and a deep breath can go a long way in steadying your nerves and making you look more comfortable and inviting.
  • Mind your manners: This might seem obvious but it bears repeating: make eye contact, bring people into the conversation, chew with you mouth closed and say thank you.
  • Quality, not quantity: Ditch the idea that getting a lot of business cards means that you “killed it” at a networking event. Focus on creating stimulating, quality conversations with individuals you hope to connect with. Aim to converse (and exchange contact information) with a handful of people who you would like to build a real professional relationship with.
  • Focus on “we” vs. “me”: Networking should never be just about you. It’s about helping each other. Be proactive about sharing information and recommendations or offering to make an introduction.
  • Follow up: Since everyone has their preferred method of communication, I tend to ask people directly how they’d prefer to keep in touch (email, phone, LinkedIn, etc.). Regardless of how you follow up, make sure you do it within 48 hours of the event.
    *Remember: the follow up is just step two of the process – don’t forget to keep the conversation, and the relationship, going.
  • Don’t give up: You might not get a response to every outreach you make. Even if your efforts go unanswered, don’t lose hope. People are busy; emails get sent to spam; people lose track of time. Try reaching out again in a few weeks and see what happens.

I took to Twitter and asked my own professional network to share their number one networking tip with me. Here are the responses I received:

  • “Don’t just think about what someone can do for you, focus on what value you are bringing and what you can offer.” – Elizabeth Callahan @Bflo_girl
  • “Make it light and personal but don’t force connections. If you’re someone who is fun to be with, others will want to work with you.” – Taylor Griffith @TaylorLeigh_G
  • “Don’t make it about a sales pitch. Get to know people, connect with them. Make them remember you.” – Krystal Sondel @LovinOnBuffalo

Regardless of whether you use the tips above, the thing to keep in mind is that networking is about bridging a connection and a mutually beneficial relationship with another.

One event; one introduction; one conversation could open up doors that you never even knew you existed.

Do The Right Thing

If there is one thing that we learned from everything that happened this week, it is this:

Do The Right Thing

This applies to so much more than running a business, or any individual professional transaction. It applies to anything and everything. It applies to holding the door for the person behind you. It applies to not cutting someone off in traffic. It applies to helping a friend in need. It applies to using your skills to help someone that is lacking in those skills.

Do The Right ThingImagine a place where everyone just did the right thing for the person or organization that they are doing it for. Imagine how much better things could be, and maybe how much happier we could be. Do you think it would make a difference? Do you think it is possible? Am I just a dreamer to believe that this is the way to conduct business? What do you think?

We recently tweeted this tweet on the Twitter (yes, I am just being goofy here):

This is how we choose to do business. If we can’t do it right, we won’t do it. It’s that simple.

Thanks for listening, and we hope that you have a wonderful and successful weekend, whatever it is you choose to do with it.

“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”

Define, Focus and Execute

Define Your Goal
Focus on Strategy
Execute the Tactics

This really applies to any project or activity that you want to do. This is not just for web projects. If you think about these easy and clear steps to take, you can help give yourself the best change at being more successful with whatever it is you want to do!
Please let us know what you think by commenting, or sharing.

Goal:

  • What do you ultimately want to accomplish? What do you want to get out of this exercise/project?
  • What should you and/or your target get out of this project?

Strategy:

  • What do you need to do in order to achieve your goal(s).
  • Who is your target?
  • What tools resources do you HAVE in order to accomplish your goal(s)?
  • What tools and resources do you NEED in order to accomplish your goal(s)?

Tactics

  • What tools will I be using for this project/exercise? If I need new tools, how do I obtain them? DO NOT fit the tactic to the tools that you have at-hand. Your tools should allow you to execute your tactics, not restrict them.
  • Who will be performing what tasks? Please, please, please use the right people for the right task.
  • When is all of this happening?
  • How will I measure my success? (this might even be a whole separate section outside of tactics – but it’s really situational depending on your goals)

Example Situation:

Goal:

You want to grow your Twitter following and want more people to re-tweet what you post.

Strategy:

  • You don’t currently have a blog section of your website. Only tweet twice a week. You only follow local sports icons on Twitter.
  • You need to add a blog section to your website. You will use this new section of your website to create new content that can be shared on Twitter as well as on other social networks and websites.
  • You need to look for people on Twitter that would be interested in your content and what you have to say and follow those people.
  • You need be more active on Twitter.

Tactics:

  • Add a blog section to your website.
  • Start to write some content that is relevant to you or your company/brand. This content should be planned and developed with your ultimate goal(s) in mind – not just content for the sake of content.
  • Use tools (like Followerwonk) to find people on Twitter that you want to follow, and that you want to follow you back. Oh, and follow them.
  • Start re-tweeting some of the interesting and relevant things that these people are posting. Or better yet, reply back to them with comments or questions. Engagement is Good!
  • Start posting some of your content to Twitter. Don’t just post the link! Write a very short sentence that describes the content, then paste the link after that. You may even choose to use a #hashtag that matches the topic/subject of the post.
  • Twitter now allows you to see how your tweets are performing. Check out your analytics on Twitter.

 

A Good Website Isn’t Just Pretty

Pretty Website != Good Website

( != means “does not equal” )

Pretty Website

If someone comes to your site, but can’t find the information that they are looking for, then your website has failed that user.

If someone comes to your website, and has to wait for some flashy presentation to appear and go through its motions before they can get to the actual site, then your website has failed that user.

It’s all about providing a good user experience.
If you make it easy for your site’s visitors to find what they are looking for – you win.
If you also make it visually appealing – big win.
If you make it each of those things, and do it across different viewing devices – HUGE WIN!

Good User Experience = Good Website

Well, that’s just our opinion…. Or is it? What do you think? Do you agree, disagree?

A good friend inspired me to write this today. Thanks Brad!

Put the Cart Behind the Horse

So many times, I get asked questions about how we’re going to accomplish a specific tactic or task. So many times, that tactic or task does not have a business need or strategy behind it. Put the cart behind the horse and first figure out what you want to accomplish with your project. Then, figure out the best way to accomplish that, using the appropriate tactics and avenues that you have at your disposal. And if the appropriate avenue does not exist yet, then you have something to work on to better your online presence.

 

Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day!Nothing here about SEO, Web Design or Development.

This is just a short post to say Happy Independence Day. We hope that you do something fun, something safe, and something to remember.

We will actually be closed on the afternoon of the 3rd until Monday, July 8th.

Happy Independence Day!