Can Marketing be Agile?

Be fluid. Be flexible. Be agile.

Be fluid. Be flexible. Be agile.

It’s been a crazy month or so. I was let go from my job, I started looking for a new one, and decided to take on more volunteer efforts with the Silicon Valley chapter of IABC. I thought I was busy before losing my job. It pales in comparison to the past month.

Anyway … this brings me to a few things I’ve learned recently.

I learned what I really would like in a job, and I learned that I have most of the skills to get me there. How do I go about learning what is missing? I have been doing a boat-load of reading. My favorites right now are Marketing Profs and Chief Marketing Technologist. [Read more…]

How to Move and Unpack Quickly

DeathtoStock_Creative Community4

Tonight I’m sitting in my house. Well, the latest place that I call my house. I moved last weekend. It’s the fourth move I’ve done in three years. I’ve become a bit of a professional packer. The actual moving I’ve left to the professionals.

So, what does it take to pack up my house ever year and move it? [Read more…]

Bandwagon – Super Bowl, Super Ads?

Yes, it’s true. I’m jumping on this bandwagon, albeit a few days later than most.

I’ve been contemplating the commercials from Super Bowl Sunday. I’ve gone back and watched a few over again on YouTube, and I’ve since seen some of them during normal TV viewing.

Once again my favorite had to be Budweiser with their lost dog. I just LOVE those Clydesdales. And this is probably the third Super Bowl in a row that Budweiser got me to tear up and/or cry. Yes, a beer commercial. Their team has a way of telling a story in 30-60 seconds like no other. Watch it with me.

There’s no way you can tell me that did not tug at your heart just a little …

[Read more…]

Is Story Hour on Your Calendar?

The first month of 2015 is just about finished. Let’s face it, time moves fast, and so does the pace of communications and marketing.

Create a StoryNo matter what industry you work in, or what kind of company you work for, business moves faster than most of us want to admit. Why do you think we are all chained to our mobile phones, stressing out each time we hear the email notification, and diving for our phones to answer on the first ring?

What if we took a few minutes and stopped what we were doing to take a few minutes to seriously consider about the story we want to tell?

[Read more…]

Social Media Changes Fast

It’s been a long while since I’ve done a few things, but this post will be about social media and blogging. I took some time off from my most public of profiles, including Twitter, Pinterest, Foursquare and some others. In the last few weeks I have been playing more using my social media profiles.

So Much to Learn
So many interesting posts, so little time. I had forgotten how many amazingly smart people use social media to share their expertise. Just by reading a few articles a day over the past few weeks, I have learned about what I have missed in the social media game while I was taking a break, and have picked up many very useful pieces of information.

Decide Which Network to Use and When
A much improved tool I have been exploring is Klout. This tool now helps you to decide which pieces of content will be on target for your audiences on each network. Lately, I have been sharing short info and some images on Twitter, while using Facebook for more personal posts about my interests, and LinkedIn for items that pertain directly to business and best practices. I have noticed by Klout score jump a few points, just by paying attention.

My most successful post over the few weeks is a retweet of an Arbor Day tweet from Smokey Bear. The yoga component got me several retweets. Here it is:

PRDreamer-SmokeyBear-Yoga-Tweet

What’s So Great About Infographics?

My favorite thing about a good infographic is that I can learn something new in just a few minutes. In addition, I can learn more about something I already know very quickly. And, lastly, they can summarize a complicated issue in a way that many people can understand.

Here are a few of my favorites from the last few weeks or so.

  1. One of my favorite things: Wine. “Malbec 101
  2. Something interesting: Technology. “The Lighter Side of IT History
  3. A good summary for work: Social Media. “The CMO’s Guide to the 2014 Social Landscape

I have been doing a little bit of research about tools to create infographics. I’ve been playing around with Canva, Piktochart, Easel.ly and Infogr.am.

What are your favorite infographics? Please share them below.

malbec-101_Infographic

Learn Something New While Networking

I would classify myself as a lifelong learner.Networking

This is evident in the years of membership with the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC). I have been a part of IABC since graduating from California State University, Fullerton with a communications degree in public relations. I often share with people how I can attribute ALL of my jobs to connections I have made through networking.

Which brings to me to my favorite reason for networking. Aside from meeting amazingly smart people everywhere I go, networking functions are almost always disguised as professional development sessions as well. And the information presented at them is difficult to find in any other setting.

In the last two weeks I have attended two events:

  1. Last week IABC Silicon Valley presented an evening with Stacey MacNeil who shared her journey to create a new way of communicating internally with HP’s 330,000 employees across the globe. I learned that it’s important to be comfortable being UNcomfortable and that at some point you just have to get out what you have created.
  2. Earlier this week, SVForum’s Marketing and Social Media SIG lead a discussion about ownership of social media. They brought in an attorney who was surprisingly entertaining who gave us examples of landmark social media cases and their potential implications. The most interesting piece of information I learned is that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), a group of five people, determines social media case outcomes based on 30-year old laws.

Did I have any crazy ah-ha moments to put into practice right away as a result of either event? No, probably not, but I gained valuable pieces of knowledge for some point down the road.

What is your favorite networking option?

Happy Networking!

Favorite Character, Another Profile

So, I created the infographic about Olivia Pope last night, and then today at work was asked to do the same exercise in paragraph form. Here’s my 5 minute attempt:

She wears the white hat. The white hat of justice. Olivia Pope changes the lives of those she touches by fixing reputations and impossible situations. Now, remember she’s in politics, and despite her leanings, her clients count on her in sticky situations to make everything right. Ms. Pope takes it one step further than her clients expect by consistently finding the truth.

It’s not bad for quick, but that middle sentence about politics needs another pass. How would you change it?

Favorite Character, A Profile | Storytelling MOOC | Creative Assignment #2

Second assignment for The Future of Storytelling – MOOC is to choose a main character from a television show and create a character profile. This was a fantastic assignment for me. As most of you know I watch too much television for my own good. So, I had a really hard time making a decision. There are just so many to choose from. Do I go classic and choose Sydney Bristow from ALIAS, or do I go more modern and choose Neal Caffrey from White Collar.

It was a difficult decision, but I chose to reveal it in an infographic. Hope if makes sense to you all.

The Future of Storytelling - MOOC- Creative Assignment 2

What Does Storytelling Mean to You? | Storytelling MOOC | Creative Assignment #1

StorytellingFor me storytelling is about using the world around you to create emotion and take a viewer, reader or listening on a journey. It might be a story about a particular event, a work of fiction or it could be a business message. Doesn’t matter what the story, it’s what is conveyed and in a way, how it is shared. Is it written? Is it painted? Is it a video? Is it a photograph? …

So, where does this idea of story come from? Well, I tell stories for a living as a practitioner of public relations and marketing. I tell stories. They might not be great works of fiction, but I do. Right now most of my stories are about the service my company provides to real estate agents. It’s fun to find a way to talk about rules and regulations so someone will read and understand.

Oh, and I’m taking a massive open online course (MOOC) titled “The Future of Storytelling.” It’s hosted by the University of Applied Sciences in Potsdam in Germany. The course if being taught by a team of 4 along with several guest lecturers who are authors, advertising executives and more. Over the next eight weeks I’ll be posting my assignments here.

First Assignment:
Summarize your favorite story and share why it is so special that you remember it.

Dos Equis' Most Interesting Man in the World

Dos Equis’ Most Interesting Man in the World

My Choice:
There are many stories that stand out for me. The most recent of which is actually a radio commercial. It starts with some mild music and through the 30-second spot it builds and builds. It’s one in a series and this one has a Halloween theme. It starts by telling us about a man who can do amazing things like grow candy corn, bob for apples and get a three pound lobster, and that he can scare the pants back ON you. The music reaches a crescendo and that’s when it tells you he is the most interesting man in the world. And the commercial ends with The Most Interesting Man in the World coming on and saying, “I don’t always drink beer, but when I do, I prefer Dos Equis.”

Why It Stuck With Me:
It’s so out of the ordinary and it makes me laugh every time I hear it. When I hear the opening strains of the music, I actually turn up the volume on the radio for a commercial. Yes, I said it, for a commercial. So, thank you, Dos Equis for keeping me entertained this Halloween. What’s so great is that it’s a whole story in just 30 seconds. And, they have been doing it for years.

What’s your favorite story and why?