4

Creative-Ideas-Diversity-TEDxWyandotteOn April 2, 2013, I had the wonderful opportunity to present for the first time at a TEDx event: TEDxWyandotte. This inaugural TEDx event took place at Kansas City Kansas Community College (KCKCC).

Creative Ideas and Diversity at TEDxWyandotte

My topic of my presentation and the video is “Diversity and Ideas in the Porous Community.”

Its focus, which is right at the heart of the Brainzooming message on creative ideas and diversity, explored the importance of creating communities open to ideas from diverse and external perspectives. In keeping with the presentation theme, I invited audience members at two different points to select the story they wanted to hear next from among three options. This approach, which I call a “live blog,” puts the audience in control of shaping the talk they most want to hear from among, in this case, nine different possible versions.

Using the TEDx constraints (limited time) and admonitions (share stories you’ve never told) created an opportunity to weave together a completely new collection of content about creative ideas and diversity, including a childhood story no one outside my immediate family had ever heard before the audience selected it.

“Diversity and Ideas in the Porous Community” Video – Mike Brown – TEDxWyandotte

I really appreciate the invitation and opportunity to participate in TEDxWyandotte from its curator Shari Wilson and Jay Matlack, Workforce Development Coordinator at KCKCC. The overall theme for TEDxWyandotte was “Core Impact,” and I’d definitely invite you to check out the work of the other presenters to see how they interpreted the theme in their own TEDx talks:

It was particularly rewarding to present at TEDxWyandotte because KCKCC feels like home in many ways. My wife led the student activities at KCKCC for ten years at the start of her career. Because of that, prior to TEDxWyandotte, I’d been on stage at KCKCC many times playing the scary monster at Halloween parties Cyndi organized for students’ kids! It also felt like home because my parents attended, marking the first time they’d visited Kansas City in many years because of illnesses my dad has since put behind him.

And when it came to telling untold stories at TEDxWyandotte, my father was more than happy to share any stories I didn’t tell with anyone who stopped by to chat before, during, and after the event. He just didn’t have to keep his stories to less than 18 minutes total! – Mike Brown

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

Mike-Brown-Gets-Brainzoomin

Learn all about Mike Brown’s creative thinking and innovation presentations!

 

 

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

1

MOA-FacebookI was writing a story for The Social Media Monthly magazine recently on the Mall of America and its social media strategy. In the course of interviewing Mall of America Senior Public Relations and Social Media Manager, Bridget Jewell, she discussed how the Mall introduced each of its social media presences based on a specific opportunity or seasonal campaign. Instead of immediately hopping on every new social network right away, MOA creates a presence when there’s a clear business reason to do so.

Not surprisingly then, as Bridget reviewed the content strategies and specific content media shared by channel, each had a different purpose. While its multiple social media presences are brand consistent and integrated, the Mall of America Twitter and Facebook sites are used differently (i.e., not simply sharing the same links), and Instagram isn’t simply for sharing photos from MOA YouTube videos.

Can you answer these 5 social media strategy questions as well as Mall of America can?

Taking a cue from the smart social media strategy at MOA, here are five questions any organization should ask about its own social media content strategy:

  1. In what ways is our content well-suited to the specific social media network and our current and prospective users on each of them?
  2. How is our content across the channels integrated and collectively representative of our brand?
  3. How does our social media content vary across our different platforms?
  4. What is included in our social media content to move the audience toward progressively beneficial behaviors for our organization?
  5. What do we incorporate into our social media content that makes it worth remembering, sharing with others, and returning to in the future?

All five are very rich strategic questions. That means you need to be able to provide strategically rich answers.

Need some ideas for your social media strategy?

If you want to go to school on an organization doing it right to get a sense of how these questions should be answered, check out the varied social media presences for MOA. You’ll learn a lot – trust me. – Mike Brown

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

 

If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

4
Select-Email

Photo by: Bastografie | Source: Photocase.com

There is value in increased web traffic and brand reputation from being more frequent and consistent with business blogging. But achieving a multiple times per week business blogging schedule can be a challenge when an organization does not have enough people to handle everything it needs to get done.

In those cases, it is beneficial to consider easy ways to enhance your social media productivity by taking advantage of normal business activities to create one more easy post weekly.

Seven Ways to Enhance Your Business Blogging and Social Media Productivity

A key to improving your social media productivity with business blogging is to tie the extra weekly blog posts to typical weekly business activities you (or your organization) are doing any way. Here are seven ways to take advantage of your:

  1. Online Reading – Create a compilation blog post featuring links to valuable articles you read in the past week.
  2. Tweeting – Put together a post with ten of your most pithy tweets (or use Facebook or Google+ status updates instead).
  3. Customer Service Calls – Feature a customer service question of the week along with the answer.
  4. Email Inbox – Summarize the most intriguing upcoming webinars and conferences related to your industry that you’ve been invited to this week.
  5. Web Analytics – Create a compilation post listing previous blog posts receiving the most recent visits related to specific keywords of interest.
  6. Sales Calls – By using a three- or five-question set of guest blog interview questions, feature a written or video interview with a client or business partner of interest to your readers.
  7. Business Conversations – Share insights and industry commentary from discussions you’ve had with business associates and clients.

Through these ideas, it is possible to create an easy one or two additional blog posts weekly. If you’re better with video or images than writing, there are even more possibilities. This boost to your social media productivity can move our business blogging from one post weekly to a consistent multiple times per week blogging frequency. – Mike Brown

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

 

If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

3

CNN-Boston-MarathonAny time we have an all eyes on the news tragedy, there is a question about what brands should do with their social media content:

  • Do you act like major networks and news programs and start exclusively sharing updates and (second hand) news about the tragedy?
  • Do you act like a cable network and keep up with whatever social media content was already planned, irrespective of the news?
  • Do you go completely dark out of respect for the tragedy and its victims?

So, what do you do with social media during a tragedy?

David Armano offers five pieces of advice for brands and how they should conduct themselves. It is great advice oriented toward a brand with a larger collaborative social media effort, although some of it (review your scheduled content and remove anything sensitive) applies across the board.

Another piece of advice from David Armano, summed up as “Do the Right Thing,” is a great sentiment, but there’s no one answer to what the right thing to do is.

One safe answer seems to be sending out your brand’s thoughts to a tragedy’s victims. Thoughts are nice, although not particularly efficacious. Some brands take advantage of their large audiences to help broadcast emergency and relief updates. Some brands are willing to go out on a limb and offer prayers. Since many times all you can do in these situations is pray or pay (i.e., donate), prayers are at the top of the heap to help victims.

Other brands, keep on with what social media content was already planned (or inappropriately chosen amid the tragedy), as others (typically individuals) spend their time calling these brands out for their social media miscues.

Perhaps the safest answer is to go dark in the face of tragedy. The challenge is there are tragedies and victims daily.

So does that mean a brand should NEVER share any social media?

No, it doesn’t.

But when there’s discussion about the importance of being “human” on social media, it’s not some b.s. social media strategy mumbo jumbo. You DO have to be human with your social media content, no matter how big or small your brand is.

And if you’re human with your social media sharing every day, you have a lot better chance of getting it right when a human tragedy is close enough to intersect with your social media content.  – Mike Brown

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

9

April-Fool-PrankI’ll admit I was tempted to create an April Fools blog post for today on “The Top Ten Reasons Creative Thinking Is Overrated.” It would be a funny and quick post to write (ten spoof reasons followed by “April Fool”) during what’s going to be an already hectic week.

Then I remembered a post author Jim Joseph wrote last year extolling brands creating April Fools social media as a way to show a human side. I replied to Jim’s blog saying I’d considered writing a post with reasons why a brand shouldn’t do April Fools prank social media.

Well, fundamental brand strategy won out over blog writing expediency!

5 Reasons April Fools Prank Social Media Is a Joke for Your Brand Strategy

Here are five reasons April Fools prank social media content is a joke when it comes to your brand strategy:

  1. Your brand represents a promise, and unless you’re Penn & Teller or Stephen King, tricking your most important audiences is likely not part of your brand promise.
  2. Just because another brand creates April Fool prank social media doesn’t mean you should. If another brand jumped off a cliff, does that mean your brand would too?
  3. Your brand doesn’t use “funny” and “surprise” as a part of its brand strategy and brand experience any other day of the year. Doing it one day a year doesn’t make your brand seem human. It just makes your brand seem confused or that it is a mindless follower.
  4. Since your brand is more conservative than it is fun, you will only approach April Fool prank social media half-heartedly. If you are going to introduce humor into social media, you should be broad and/or consistent with it so your audience gets it.
  5. Self-deprecating humor is safer than “at your audience’s expense” humor. Can you turn your April Fool prank social media idea into one where your brand is the butt of the joke? Would you want to? Probably not.

What do you think about Aprils Fools prank social media and its fit with brand strategy?

You can say I’m too much of a stick in the mud, but if a brand tries to make fools of its customers, that doesn’t seem to be part of a great brand strategy and brand experience. And on that point, I’m serious. No joke.  – Mike Brown

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

 

“How strong is my organization’s social media strategy?”

9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social Strategy

Is your social media implementation working as well as it can? In less than 60 minutes with the FREE Brainzooming ebook “9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social Strategy,” you’ll have a precise answer to this question.

Any executive can make a thorough yet rapid evaluation of nine different dimensions of their social business strategies with these nine diagnostics. Download Your Free Copy of “9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social  Strategy.”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

0

NMX-WebsiteIt’s fantastic that live event social media coverage of an incredible conference allows you to experience an event live from afar along with the blogs, presentations, and videos recapping the content afterward.

The only downside is you get to start kicking yourself while the event is still underway for not having ponied up the bucks to attend.

That was my sentiment with the New Media Expo (#NMX).

The Sunday afternoon tweets clearly confirmed the great content coming out of the Las Vegas event. By Monday, any remaining doubts were erased that the investment to attend the New Media Expo would have been a great one.

So while I wasn’t at #NMX, here are a sampling of tweets from the event. Again, this wasn’t my original content. These tweets are simply a sampling of great content I monitored and retweeted. Thanks to all the live tweeters for their efforts to share these ideas with the outside world!

This first link is to a Slideshare eBook with highlights from a broad range of #NMX presentations.

Audience Growth and “Viral” Content

These New Media Expo tweets underscore that it’s a different ballgame for bloggers than for traditional journalists. This point is lost on many traditional media outlets trying to look like social media sites, often with silly results. Social media content creators, however, would do well to consider adopting the ethics professional journalists operate under daily basis. And speaking of “daily,” there is value in writing more – even publishing daily.

While I still contend viral content is largely a game of numbers and chance, these tweets provide an underpinning to creating content that will be better received, even if it doesn’t become viral content. The theme of a micro focus inside a macro sentiment provides a basis for both generating and refining ideas that are near this intersection.

Social Business

This slide from the “War of Words: Myth-Busting Social Media, SEO & Content Marketing” presentation by Lee Odden is a wonderful illustration of how social content interacts with traditional marketing to address wherever a customer is in the buying cycle. You can find whole presentation from Lee Odden on Slideshare.

These additional #NMX tweets point to how adopting a social business perspective not only paves the way for a different way of creating a brand’s customer experience, it also opens up intriguing possibilities for ongoing content ideas.

Guy Kawasaki on Social Networking, Apple, and Marketing Success

Keynote presenter Guy Kawasaki was filled with tweetable one-liners – no surprise there. Here are several that prompted my retweets. The first one sums up his take on four social networking platforms:

I’ve tried to say what Guy Kawasaki says below in several posts about Steve Jobs and the fascination with doing what Steve Jobs did at Apple. There’s no modeling Steve Jobs because he didn’t have to operate with typical strategies because he was wired differently. In all those time of writing about it, however, I’ve never been able to describe the unique situation with Jobs so clearly:

Always a challenge to force yourself to accept when you want to do a variety of things:

Two Final Random Thoughts from the New Media Expo

This is one of those tweets that you sort of agree with, and sort of makes sense, but I would never have said it this way:

Definitely not the sexiest of the rewteets, but a tremendously beneficial idea, nonetheless. I’d throw in your attention and passion right in there with your time as the most valuable things you have:

I’ve got to find a way to get to #NMX in 2014!

Mike Brown

 

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

 

If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading

4

For some people, it is a natural move from in real life personal relationships to social networking. Their social networking success can come from an instinctive or learned knack for what and when to share the right amount of personal information to make positive connections without boring people or seeming too self-obsessed.

Others, who take a more cautious approach to their lives and personal relationships, cannot imagine WHAT they could share online about themselves while still maintaining a professional image.

Social Networking by Sharing Kitteh Pictures

I was having this discussion with a cautious business owner recently who has social media presences established for the business, but struggles with what to share to both establish professional expertise and make personal connections via social networking. My point was even in a business-to-business setting, people buy from other people. PERSONAL relationships matter in real life business development, and they also matter when you are engaged in online social networking for business development.

You should have seen the reaction though when I mentioned the strategy behind sharing pictures of our cat Clementine (who a Twitter friend dubbed the “Director of Enthusiasm”) on Facebook.

Within a few questions, we found some topics that definitely have the potential for sharing on social networks. The issue is whether this business owner will become comfortable weaving in a more personal feel to social media content.

7 Content Strategy Questions for Building Personal Relationships

If you are struggling with integrating personal information into your social media sharing, here are seven questions you can ask yourself to identify potential personally oriented topics for social media sharing:

  • What do you think, know, and believe?
  • What are your favorite sources of compelling news and information online?
  • What do business associates and clients know about you personally?
  • What do you share about yourself when you meet someone at a networking event?
  • What is intriguing about you and your professional and personal interactions?
  • What is visually intriguing about your life – both professionally and personally?
  • What brands, stores, and places do you talk up to people because you appreciate them?

Certainly, you have answers to these questions. If you are struggling with sharing personal information via social media, the answers to these questions can start to form the basis of your personal content sharing strategy.

Social Networking – When and How Much Personal Information

The next big questions to ask and answer are how soon and how much to share personally?

You have to do what works for you, but if you are reluctant to share personal information online, the answers to these last two questions are “sooner than you think” and “more than you want.”

So now that all the questions are answered, it is time to started sharing and building personal relationships to let people get to know you better in an online professional setting! – Mike Brown

 

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the free Brainzooming email updates.

 

If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestGoogle Plus

Continue Reading