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A request to share Twitter Tips was tweeted by Chris Lucas of Gold Coast Social Media Marketing. Chris’ request seemed like a great “Top Ten Time Waster,” so sitting on the couch, I got my brainzooming by tweeting Twitter Tips ideas. Some of the Twitter Tips wound up in this week’s who to follow and who not to follow article. Among the other Twitter tips, there are, ideally, several to benefit to both new and avid users when it comes to apps, engagement, and experimenting:

1.  Not all apps (Twitter.com, Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, Tweetchat.com, etc.) handle every tweeting situation well. Get familiar with several apps so you have some flexibility.

2.  If you’re getting in the Twitter pool, show up regularly. If you’re looking for engagement, don’t dive in, make a huge splash, and then disappear for weeks.

3. Experiment all the time. It’s only 140 characters, and it goes by really fast, so try things out frequently.

4.  Here’s a secret: a lot of so-called Twitter experts are full of themselves. Or full of s#!*. Or both. Proceed with caution.

5.  Pay attention to how tweeters who are really active use it, but decide for yourself whether their tactics make sense for you.

6. Follow the tweeters who people you find interesting interact with regularly. It’s better than blindly clicking on #FollowFriday recommendations.

7.  Set up searches for terms and ideas important to you. People using these terms provide great opportunities for new interactions & relationships.

8.  Pay close attention to @Mentions. These are also openings to extend conversations with interesting people.

9.   Don’t suck up to Twitter rock stars. Invest the energy you’d expend with them helping people less experienced than you are.

10. If you’re not getting engagement with others maybe it’s because:

  • ALL you do is make pronouncements.
  • You don’t try to listen when people reply to you.
  • There are no @ replies to others in your last 20 tweets.

What tips would you add? Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to see how we can help you define a strategy firmly tied to business yet recognizing the impact of social networking on your market opportunities.

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7

It’s that time of year when it’s cold (both in temperature and creatively), and it seems there are fewer people around to be seen and talked to in person. Do you notice the same thing during January? Surprisingly for an introvert, this drives me crazy! At times, having fewer people around can lead to more reflection and introspection. But it can also create frustration, either personally or from simply watching what’s getting tweeted every day. One way of dealing with all the grayness of January is to ask questions, so here are eleven questions. They’re mainly rhetorical questions, but if you feel compelled to answer some of them, I’d love to hear your thoughts!

  • Have you ever tried to fix a typo and each time you try, it just keeps getting worse?
  • Do you also find that you rarely learn while talking, but learn a lot from hearing others’ perspectives?
  • There is such pressure to “do, do, do.” But if you’re always mentally full, how are you going to find room to grow, create new ideas, & change?
  • If you pick somebody else’s brain, will it ever heal?
  • When a new idea is presented, do you start with what won’t work, or do you begin with what might work and build from there?
  • When someone’s tried to help you, don’t you think finding SOMETHING to be enthused about and acknowledge will make them try even harder next time?
  • You can find yourself to be “too smart” about your situation to see new opportunities. What are you doing to continually refresh your perspective?
  • Michael Stipe of R.E.M. reportedly went through a period where he wouldn’t use the word “I” in a song’s lyrics. Could you keep writing if you didn’t use the word “I”?
  • If the only constant in your life is excuses, that’s a problem. When are you going to start fixing it?
  • Have you noticed that a great idea is easily considered a “gimmick” by someone who didn’t come up with it?
  • Are you aware that saying “thank you” is no more or less necessary online than offline? – Mike Brown

For an innovative boost, download the free Brainzooming ebook, “Taking the NO Out of InNOvation” to enhance your creative perspective! For an organizational boost, contact The Brainzooming Group to help your team be more successful by rapidly expanding strategic options and creating innovative plans to efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can deliver these benefits for you.

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7

Model/Actress Brooklyn Decker’s photo is on the cover of this month’s Esquire, in case you hadn’t noticed. I didn’t didn’t notice it right away, since the arrival of the February Esquire with its rather sexually provocative cover was strategically obscured. Someone other than me (and there’s only me and my wife in the house) placed it under the current Bloomberg Business Week with its rather textually provocative cover, “Apple without Jobs.”

The Challenge

Perusing the table of contents, Esquire features a special flap on how to “read” the issue, including a blurb for fans of scavenger hunts. The paragraph describes the interactive strategy Esquire has concocted to allow readers to find more Brooklyn Decker photos beyond those in the physical magazine. The interactive steps involve:

  • Downloading a free app from iTunes
  • Going to a Barnes & Noble store
  • Locating the magazine aisles
  • Triggering the app, and
  • Pointing the phone around the store until additional Brooklyn Decker images (suitable for taking your picture with) appear on-screen, where they can be easily shared and tweeted.

In print, it seems like a lot to do, and very counter to earlier Brainzooming posts on not creating an interactive strategy that places undue burdens on your audience to engage with your brand and the how attractive simple interactive strategy can be. Five steps, including one step each in visiting both virtual and physical stores, seems onerous, even to interact with photos of Brooklyn Decker.

Is It Worth It?

Interestingly enough though, when you convert the instructions to video, as Esquire did on the video below showing the scavenger hunt in action, it just doesn’t seem like as big of a deal to clear five hurdles for a personal Brooklyn Decker photo to show your friends.

The number of hurdles aside, this interactive strategy from Esquire has several things going for it:

From what you’ve seen, what do you think about this? Would you jump over five hurdles to get your picture taken with a virtual Brooklyn Decker? Maybe you’ve gotten your photo taken with Brooklyn Decker already, so how was it? Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to see how we can help you define a brand strategy firmly tied to business yet recognizing the impact of social networking on your customers.

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13

I don’t have a hard and fast strategy for following people on Twitter, but I’ve never been a proponent of following everyone who follows you. Having seen others spell out rules behind their Twitter strategies though, it prompted me to see if I could explain my strategy for who I follow.  Here’s what emerged from the exercise – with some rationale behind who I do and don’t follow on Twitter.

Who to Follow on Twitter

  • I’m one of your most recent follows. Says to me you’re probably not following people wholesale.
  • You have very few people you follow and you’ve been nice enough to include me among them (I’m always surprised at the ones where they’re following 20 big names – Oprah, Obama, Kawasaki, etc. – and me. How does that happen?).
  • Your last few tweets are intriguing.
  • You tweet about innovation, creativity, and strategy.
  • You’re following other familiar faces, especially in the innovation and creativity communities.
  • Somebody in my conversations list says you’re really an interesting person to follow.
  • You aren’t a know-it-all superstar celebrity or a social media rock star, so I might have something to offer which you might notice and find beneficial.

Why Not to Follow on Twitter

  • You’ve been around for some time and have more people you’re following than tweets. That says you’re more interested in audience building than sharing ideas.
  • The number of lists you’re on is very small relative to the number of followers you have (i.e., 1% ). Chances are there’s not much of interest you’re contributing.
  • You have tens of thousands of followers and you’re following a few thousand more people with a comparatively low number of tweets. You’re just looking for more numbers, and I’m a crappy number.
  • You don’t have a bio or location listed, you’re Twitter name is intentionally obscure, there’s no website listed, and you haven’t tweeted enough to provide any sense of who you are.
  • “MLM,” “affiliate marketing,” “network marketing,” “Trump,” or anything that sounds like a “get rich quick” scheme is included in your bio.
  • I followed you first, and you DM’d me with something that seemed like a non-auto DM question, but when I tried to answer, learned you’re not following me.

That may not be every reason, but that covers the rationale I’m conscious of using.

How about you? Who do you or don’t you follow on Twitter? Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to see how we can help you define a strategy firmly tied to business yet recognizing the impact of social networking on your market opportunities.

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4

The second annual #BZBowl is a Twitter-based chat The Brainzooming Group is sponsoring Super Bowl Sunday, February 6, 2011, and you’re invited to join us! Featuring cool marketers, branding experts, creative instigators, authors, and pop culture mavens (i.e., YOU and all the other Brainzooming blog readers) #BZBowl will be a running commentary on how brands are using what has become the biggest advertising and marketing event of the year.

Based on the strong response to last year’s #BZBowl, you can expect great branding insights, a little bit of snark, lively conversations, and no spammers (in contrast to other Super Bowl chats)!

Planned #BZBowl Activities

Here’s How You Can Participate in #BZBowl

  • Let us know if you’ll be joining us by replying to @Brainzooming on Twitter with #BZBowl in your tweet. Be sure to share the link with others as well. In fact, you can copy and tweet this to do both:

I’ll be tweeting on #SuperBowlAds w/ the #BZBowl sponsored by @Brainzooming. Join us Feb 6th! Info: http://bit.ly/hDNlBI

We’re up for ideas, so let us know what you think, and please plan to join us, Sunday, February 6 for #BZBowl! – Mike Brown

 

For a creative boost, download the free Brainzooming ebook, “Taking the NO Out of InNOvation” to enhance your creative perspective! For an organizational boost, contact The Brainzooming Group to help your team be more successful by rapidly expanding strategic options and creating innovative plans to efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can deliver these benefits for you.

 

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2

Strong interactive marketing can involve lots of design, complexity, and technology to make sure it works and engages the audience. Or interactive marketing can be done very simply and smartly, letting your ingenuity and creativity carry the day. That’s the route Houlihan’s took with this “interactive” email I received Friday. No places to click. No videos to set up the promotion. Just an engaging graphic drawing audience members in to figure out where they stand among the Super Bowl party invite crowd.

The only way it could have been improved?

It should include the #BZBowl as a great Super Bowl option for everyone!

Super Bowl Sunday, February 6, 2011 will mark the second annual #BZBowl, a Twitter-based chat sponsored by The Brainzooming Group, featuring folks from a whole variety of marketing, branding, social media, customer service, and other creative perspectives tweeting about they think works and doesn’t work in this year’s Super Bowl advertising and marketing camapigns.

Look for introductory details in Monday’s Brainzooming blog, when we’ll finally know what teams will be playing!  

Note: Houlihan’s isn’t a client, and there’s no direct payment for this shout out, but I have partaken multiple times in Houlihan’s Fourquare check-in deal for Free Frites! Love those Free Frites!Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can help you enhance your brand strategy and implementation efforts.

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1

This video popped on Facebook this week, and I had to share it because it points to a strategic lesson I hold very firmly:

Despite all the cultural and technological cues suggesting everything has changed from the past, and we’re so much smarter and connected, and so much more knowedgeable about every strategic lesson to allow us to solve business situations more cleverly than anyone before us every imagined…it’s still pretty much the same game with new toys.

I don’t know how factual exactly ALL of the claims are in this video, but it’s a fun example illustrating that seeking to increase brand interaction isn’t a new problem, and more than 500 year-old solutions exist which we can all learn from –  if we’re smart and not blinded by all the shiny, new objects flying by us daily! – Mike Brown

If you have trouble playing the video, you can see it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oo7_eFftuM&feature=player_embedded

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call us at 816-509-5320 to learn how we can help you enhance your brand strategy and implementation efforts.

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