Read These 5 Books Before Starting Your Next Side Project

Over the past decade I read hundreds of business and marketing books. Some were useful, some rehashed the same old advice you heard hundreds of times, and others used too much filler to meet the 200+ page publisher requirements.

At the time of this writing, I am in the first stages of building a new venture. Here are 5 of the most valuable books I am re-reading before launching the project.

Read moreRead These 5 Books Before Starting Your Next Side Project

5 Unconventional Books All Marketers & Entrepreneurs Should Read

People often ask what books I recommend for marketers and entrepreneurs. These are 5 unconventional books that will change the way you think about marketing, business, and entrepreneurship.

They are not your usual, flash-in-the-pan tactical types, but rather reference-level materials that can help you build a stronger company, and better relationships with your customers — all on your own terms.

Read more5 Unconventional Books All Marketers & Entrepreneurs Should Read

Did you reach your creative peak? And how to get your edge back.

In 1905, at the age of 26, Einstein published four trailblazing papers that still define how we think about physics today: Photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, Special relativity, and the relation of mass and energy (E = mc2).

Although we can’t all be Einstein, what is interesting about his life (and how that applies to us mere mortals) is that he seems to have reached peak creativity pretty early on in his life.

Read moreDid you reach your creative peak? And how to get your edge back.

One Day Project — A cure for inaction and analysis paralysis.

As entrepreneurs and working professionals, you know it’s hard to find time for personal and passion projects. Even the ones you know would make a significant impact on your life or career.

This especially applies to those of us with family and other responsibilities. I am now a one year fatherhood veteran, and we are in the throes of insomnia, “Will She Eat It?” and “Don’t Touch That!”. Free time is a luxury we have lucid dreams of, while riding the fine line between Advil and caffeine.

Read moreOne Day Project — A cure for inaction and analysis paralysis.

Inspire Your Creativity With These Three Simple Habits

Earlier this year, I started “urban sketching”. Going out for a stroll in interesting neighbourhoods, and sitting down to draw and paint whatever captures my attention. It only takes about 15 minutes to finish a sketch — and in that time, there is nothing else. I’m able to be fully present, notice small details and movements, and completely let go of any anxieties and worries I may have.

I come back from my sketch-walks rejuvenated, often with new content and business ideas. It’s like having a happiness stimulus package delivered right into the brain — elevating mood, reducing stress and boosting creativity (without the political consequences :).

Read moreInspire Your Creativity With These Three Simple Habits

How to build an editorial calendar (for a meaningful life)

I’ve been a terrible marketer.

One of the most important elements of building a platform, and creating deep relationships with your community is to create valuable content. Consistently.

Well, I’ve been slacking. I haven’t posted a new article for over 4 months now, and my “publishing anxiety” level finally met my procrastination level.

The problem wasn’t that I had writer’s block, or that I somehow became illiterate since then. The problem was that I didn’t feel confident about my writing, and how that writing would serve my greater purpose.

So, I went back to the cave (newly renovated home office), and dug in. Fuelled by copious amounts of caffeine, lack of sleep and a driving desire to deliver value for my readers and listeners — I came up with a solution. And I’d like share it with you.

Read moreHow to build an editorial calendar (for a meaningful life)

How to Stop Burnout, Reduce Stress & Boost Creativity

Looming deadlines. Never-ending to do lists. Being creative on-demand. Dealing with constant change as well as an overflowing inbox. This is reality for most marketers and entrepreneurs.

It’s also the cause of burnout, fatigue and anxiety. This is why good ideas die before they see the light of day. Our minds are too busy dealing with these stressors, to muster enough power for creative thought and meaningful action.

I don’t talk about it much, but I often battle anxiety, fear and melancholia even after 8 years of running a pretty successful business. Just two weeks ago, we had another bout.

Read moreHow to Stop Burnout, Reduce Stress & Boost Creativity

How To Find Your Voice, Dare To Be Vulnerable & Live Your Brand

A few months ago, on a Thursday evening, I got a call from a friend. He was part of an organizing committee for a WordPress conference to be held in Calgary that weekend. It turned out one of their morning speakers had to cancel at the last minute and now he was looking for a replacement that would speak on something related to blogging in 2 days time.

And that is how I came to give the most naked and vulnerable talk of my speaking career. In front of about a 100 bloggers, developers and entrepreneurs.

Read moreHow To Find Your Voice, Dare To Be Vulnerable & Live Your Brand

Write Your Manifesto, Find Your Tribe & Fire Up Your Business.

What I’m about to share with you is a powerful exercise. It provides you with clarity in life and business. Some of my e-mail subscribers who were here from the beginning even had their husbands, wives and kids go through it.

This exercise came out of necessity: to clarify who I am, what I stand for and who I work with. I’ve been digging into my brand for over two years now, trying to make it clearer to myself and to those considering working with me. Ideally, we would share similar beliefs and values.

Read moreWrite Your Manifesto, Find Your Tribe & Fire Up Your Business.

Love As a Marketing Strategy

I work in marketing, and sometimes… I’m ashamed of our industry. If you were to judge the marketing field by the articles and books being produced, consumed and promoted these days you’d think we’re all parasitic wastes of skin.

From oversimplified, vague and useless content like the “Top 5 ways to increase your followers” and “3 things you didn’t know about Kim Kardashian’s ass”, to books on using the latest psychology and neuroscience to manipulate customers into buying MORE STUFF – it’s hard to believe marketing hasn’t been outlawed yet.

Read moreLove As a Marketing Strategy

Second Act: Are You Making a Living Or Making a Difference?

Have you ever heard of the Taiwanese Monkey Trap? It’s a device used to capture monkeys, to make what I imagine is pretty swell monkey stew (maybe also Louisiana-style monkey ribs? I don’t know. </digression>).

Hunters build a box with open wooden slats, and place a banana or a piece of similar sized fruit in it, and make sure it’s clearly visible. They also cut a hole in the box, just big enough for the monkey’s open hand to reach through and grip the bait.

Read moreSecond Act: Are You Making a Living Or Making a Difference?

The Science And Psychology Behind Viral Articles In Your Social Feeds

A symphony of psychological triggers orchestrated a chemical soup in your brain and within a split-second signalled the amygdala (part of your brain that performs emotional processing) to sound the alarm in your hypothalamus (brain’s command center). It activated and synchronized your nervous system, muscle fibres and bone structure – finally instructing your finger to click or tap on THIS headline. Only to find this:

Read moreThe Science And Psychology Behind Viral Articles In Your Social Feeds

These 3 Small Businesses Are Rocking Instagram (And How You Can Too)

I’ll admit it… I’m a casual Instagrammer. For me, it’s mostly pictures of Jazz, gym and motorcycles.

However, I’m seeing a really interesting social dynamic developing there, which presents a great opportunity for the right kind of small business to connect with customers and grow their brand.

Aside from running a couple contest campaigns, I haven’t had much of a chance to use it in the marketing mix for most of my clients. So I reached out to a few Instagram rockstars for some tips and advice. I asked why they chose Instagram to be one of their marketing channels; do they consider it to be a success; and what are some techniques they use. Here’s what they said.

Read moreThese 3 Small Businesses Are Rocking Instagram (And How You Can Too)

Do you have a passion project? Why NOW is the time to start one.

There will be a time when you’ll think back to this moment and either regret that you didn’t act, or cherish that you did.

 
I’ve read almost all of Seth Godin’s books. He started losing me a bit right around Linchpin, when he started talking about art and artists, and sharing your art and so on. It sounded hokey and weird, with quotes like this:

“Your art is what you do when no one can tell you exactly how to do it. Your art is the act of taking personal responsibility, challenging the status quo, and changing people.” – Seth Godin

It took me years to understand what Seth was talking about in his books and posts. Creating art? Sharing Art? What does that have to do with anything? Especially in business?

Well, I finally cracked the code, and I’ll share one piece of it here with you. Something we’ll call a passion project.

Read moreDo you have a passion project? Why NOW is the time to start one.

9 Ways To Create Time, Space and Stillness For Meaningful Work.

I am fascinated by people who do meaningful work. People who create, share and nurture ideas that move us toward a better future. They somehow operate differently, and I am curious to find out how.

Late last year, I decided to start set up interviews with some of these people I could get access to. Some acquaintances, some authors of interesting articles I came across and some people who came highly recommended — spanning from a communications director for an addictions recovery centre, to a web designer and author, to a lead researcher of a multi-year cancer study. Some patterns started emerging. This is one of them.

Read more9 Ways To Create Time, Space and Stillness For Meaningful Work.

The Great Content Curation Hoax

If you’ve beaten around the Internets on your lunch break or while ignoring your children and significant other after dinner, chances are you’ve noticed the insane amount of content being shared by everyone. From aunt Denise who tweets about kittens, Greenpeace and Vagisil to your local plumbing shop delighting their “fans” with links about toilet safety and the latest in PVC piping.

Somewhere along the line, marketers were sold on the idea that we must curate. So, now we’re battling the plumbing shop, aunt Denise and millions of other brands and businesses for a piece of your attention by hunting for and sharing an endless stream of links.

But is this really sound advice? Or does curating content make you appear bland and unimaginative?

Read moreThe Great Content Curation Hoax

What Rogers’ Nationwide Cell Outage Can Teach Us About Social Media Crisis Communications

It’s almost 7PM here. We’ve been without cell service for over 2 hours. People are FREAKING OUT! Rogers, one of the three cell service providers in Canada has had a nation-wide outage and Twitter has erupted!

Here are three quick social media crisis communication lessons we can learn from their fail:
 

Read moreWhat Rogers’ Nationwide Cell Outage Can Teach Us About Social Media Crisis Communications

The Only 4 Website Metrics Worth Tracking

When you log into Google Analytics (GA) – which seems to be the standard these days – you’re hit in the face with a jumbled mess of options, buttons, drop-down menus and hundreds of data points.

It’s easy to get lost in the options and start measuring things that just don’t provide anything strategically meaningful. The 17 people worldwide who get into the minutiae of analytics are looking to squeeze out another 0.5% improvement in their website performance. For the rest of us, we have to be more effective with our time. Here are just 4 metrics to track that will give you a simple but powerful overview of your digital marketing performance.

Read moreThe Only 4 Website Metrics Worth Tracking

Why your marketing plan will fail

It took almost three months to complete the digital marketing plan. Now it’s all laid out, in detail. Everything from objectives and target markets to content strategy and management guidelines.

Yet, it’s still not working. Somehow all that work amounted to diddly. The sales aren’t pouring in. The unique visitor numbers haven’t tripled and the website is still not in the top position on Google.

Sounds familiar? Enter the marketing reality.

Read moreWhy your marketing plan will fail

My 7 Days of #DigitalDetox

For most of us, it’s hard to imagine a day without checking Facebook or Twitter, let alone e-mail. To be honest, I have an iPad on my night table and that’s usually the first thing I check in the morning. When I spoke at a marketing conference recently – more then half of the 500 attendees admitted to doing the same thing. Like being in the Matrix, it seems almost impossible to disconnect from the firehose of information available at our fingertips.

 

Read moreMy 7 Days of #DigitalDetox

How to Create a Content Calendar: The Check, Align & Flex Method

It’s easy for someone to say you need a content calendar, but how do you build one? As content becomes more and more important (for branding, SEO, thought leadership…), not only do you have to come up with content ideas, but also a schedule to produce them.

To tell you the truth, I advocate building an editorial schedule to everyone who will listen, however I rarely take my own advice. You’ll see blog posts that are sometimes a week apart, sometimes two and often more.  So, I researched how different marketers approach content calendars, and distilled it down to three main ideas that should help both of us build something that works and stick to it.

Read moreHow to Create a Content Calendar: The Check, Align & Flex Method

She is my Why [personal post]

We sat on a park bench overlooking a small lake – slight summer breeze whispering though the trees. By now, she found it hard to walk more then a few minutes, so we would take many rests along the way. This would be one of our last walks together.

We survived war, refugee camps and moved half-way across the world together. She raised me, lifted me every time I stumbled and sacrificed everything for us.

Now we sat silently – hoping to stop time just for a while.

Read moreShe is my Why [personal post]

How to build a digital marketing team [infographic]

How to build a digital marketing team

In five years from now your marketing team will be obsolete. Technology is evolving rapidly and in its wake altering communication behaviours and demands and your organization has to be agile and responsive like never before. Traditional marketing roles favoured specialization and seclusion. They are already having a hard time fitting in with the new social and digital landscape. It’s time for your organization to evolve, and here’s how. [infographic]

Read moreHow to build a digital marketing team [infographic]

How to Select Your Best Digital Marketing Mix

Are you playing roulette with your marketing dollars? With so many media choices competing for less and less consumer attention, choosing the right marketing channels is pretty much like gambling. To cover their bases, some businesses will attempt to “be everywhere”, stretching themselves too thin and others will attempt to solve the problem by throwing money at it – running ineffective contests or ads. To make sure your effort and marketing dollars are invested wisely into the right marketing mix, you have to think strategically.

Read moreHow to Select Your Best Digital Marketing Mix

The non-profit guide to successful crowdfunding

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already familiar with some of the obstacles non-profit and NGO organizations are facing today. There is a consistent push towards social innovation, social enterprise and alternative fundraising methods – coming from all corners of the stakeholder universe. While their definitions are still firming up, one thing is clear: Funding is a consistent challenge for many organizations today.

Touted as a game-changer by pundits, the idea of crowd-funding has created a wave of disruption across industries. For this article, I’d like us to explore how to utilize these platforms intelligently in a non-profit environment.

Read moreThe non-profit guide to successful crowdfunding

3.5 Steps to Setting Intelligent Social Media Goals

Why, exactly, are you on Twitter? What is it, exactly, that you’re trying to accomplish on YouTube? Or Pinterest. Or Instagram? Or on any new platform that pops up in the next year? – Can you answer these questions clearly and specifically, without resorting to empty platitudes such as “engage the audience” or “join the conversation“? (BTW, nobody wants to join a conversation about paper towels, or banking, or deli meats…)

Rather then muddling our way through, let’s figure out exactly how these social or digital platforms will help you get where you want to go. Oh yeah, it’s also in 3.5 pretty easy steps with examples! There is even a video at the end.

Read more3.5 Steps to Setting Intelligent Social Media Goals

Are You Ready For The Microcontent Revolution – Exclusive Interview with Gary Vaynerchuk

Just before stepping on stage to light up the audience at FP Reach 2012, GaryVee spent a few minutes candidly (read NSFW) sharing his thoughts on changes in the marketplace and what to keep an eye on in the coming years. Video is only 7 minutes long, but you’ll get a ton of valuable insights you can apply to your business immediately.

 
Some of my takeaways were:
 

Read moreAre You Ready For The Microcontent Revolution – Exclusive Interview with Gary Vaynerchuk

Ultimate Guide To Advanced Target Marketing

Advanced Target Market Profiles

Considered a pioneer of marketing, John Wanamaker was a US merchant who famously stated: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” That statement still rings true today. Even with all the analytics and digital metrics you can muster – chances are pretty good that you’re bleeding customers and marketing dollars all over the place.

Read moreUltimate Guide To Advanced Target Marketing

Make Sense of Gen Y and Improve Hiring With These 5 Social Media Ideas

Yesterday, after leaving the beautiful and sunny San Diego I tried to drown my sorrows in a fresh issue of The Wall Street Journal. Flipping through the pages, I came across an article on Silicon Valley’s Stock Funk. In it, the authors interviewed a few employees of Facebook, Instagram and Zynga – and some of their comments just struck me as everything that is wrong with hiring these days.

Read moreMake Sense of Gen Y and Improve Hiring With These 5 Social Media Ideas

Less, But Better

In the 60s, 70s and even today, Braun was a powerhouse of forward design. They made products which were beautiful, easy-to-use, practical and timeless. Many of their products are considered pieces of art and you can find them in places such as MoMa in New York and Suntory Museum in Osaka. The Braun development team was lead by Dieter Rams. He pioneered an approach to design which emphasized simplicity and elegance. He developed a manifesto for this approach in his 10 rules of good design. It boils down to a simple but incredibly powerful statement: “Weniger, aber besser”  which translates to Less, But Better.

Read moreLess, But Better

Power of Micro-Communities

Online Micro Community

In 2006, when Brains on Fire worked with Fiskars on a massive re-ignition of their brand, they found out that most of the people buying Fiskars products were scrapbookers and crafters. They came up with an idea to build an online crafting community that would connect the Fiskars brand to its true fans. Fiskateers was started by hand-selecting four women from across the US, who were then flown to the Fiskars factory, given a tour and introduced to the leadership team. They were then given the keys to the vacant online community Brains on Fire had built and a responsibility to develop, maintain and evangelize it to other crafters. The entire project was started with four people and it is now more then 9,000 members strong and growing, representing 20 countries.

Read morePower of Micro-Communities

Pause. Think. Repeat.

Digital Communications Pause

It’s hard to keep up with changes in the digital world. It seems that a new social / digital / communications platform is launching every few days, in all sorts of flavours. I recently spoke about the idea of a post-social world and how leaders should be preparing themselves by building a community and developing a buoyant communication strategy.

Read morePause. Think. Repeat.

Re-Starting with Why

Chances are most of you are already aware of Simon Sinek’s monumental piece of work by the name of “Start With Why“. I’ve used his TED talk in classes and presentations over the past couple of years, mostly as an interesting video to watch with hopes that it may spark some conversation.

You’ve also heard the expression “an idea whose time has come” – and boy did it. As of today, I’ve spent 2 to 3 hours every day for the past month crunching through what I thought would be an easy branding exercise. Applying Simon’s Golden Circle to my brand, content and work has yielded some incredible discoveries and even changes to the way I approach strategy work. I encourage you to watch the video below, even if you’ve already seen it.

Still a work in progress, verbalizing my WHY has been a struggle for close to a month now, but it’s led to some interesting observations:

Read moreRe-Starting with Why

Are You Ready For a Post-Social World?

I’m not much for status quo. I imagine you aren’t either. Lucky for us, we’re in an industry of constant and unexpected change. I had an opportunity to share some observations about where digital communications are headed, at a recent Social Media Breakfast in yyc.

You can watch the edited version of the presentation below (less then 30 minutes), or see the whole enchilada here. I would love to see what you think and whether you agree or disagree with any of the ideas presented.

Here is a short synopsis of the presentation:

Read moreAre You Ready For a Post-Social World?

Surviving Social Media with Channel Agnostic Strategy

social media channel strategy

The exponential growth of online channels is like watching the explosion of TV networks in fast forward, on crack-laced steroids. So, how can you possibly buoy your marketing strategy to remain intact with all these never-ending changes? I believe the answer is by not going further down the rabbit hole, but rather by going back to the core and thinking beyond social media or traditional marketing.

Read moreSurviving Social Media with Channel Agnostic Strategy

Is Facebook Worth the Effort Anymore?

Facebok social media marketing

I’m finding it harder and harder to recommend Facebook as an integral part of the marketing mix for my clients. Yes, they’re almost at a billion users. Yes, they have ridiculous amount of traffic. Yes, they have one of most powerful ad targeting systems… but I just have a feeling we’re seeing the crest of Facebook’s domination and you may want to look into diversifying your digital assets. Here’s why:

Read moreIs Facebook Worth the Effort Anymore?

C Suite vs Social Media ROI

CEO and Social Media ROI
Image by: Alexander Bolotnov

This is the second article in the “Social Media in the C Suite” series. For more, check out “Selling Social Media to the C Suite” and the upcoming “Social Media Leadership” posts.

 

The Bottom Line

Yes… start at the bottom line, because that is what it’s all about. The one and only true indicator of social media success, or any marketing success of that matter, is of course… the bottom line. How much revenue was or will be generated as a result of social media efforts?

Read moreC Suite vs Social Media ROI

Selling Social Media to the C Suite

Social Media for CEOs

Social Media & Business Objectives

When it comes to selling Social Media to the CEO or leadership team, most of the confusion and reluctance comes from the lack of understanding of how exactly having a Twitter, Facebook or whatever account is supposed to bring in revenue. The other side of the coin is that most creative and marketing agencies can’t really verbalize this connection and make a clear, logical case for using social media in a business environment… with the exception of “let’s make this really cool thing that’ll go viral”.

Read moreSelling Social Media to the C Suite

How PR fails at Blogger Outreach

PR Influential Blogger Outreach

At some point in the last year or so, someone pegged me as an influential blogger… and then it started. A constant and never-ceasing stream of daily e-mails from various PR companies mindlessly clogging up my inbox. The volume has picked up substantially and is sometimes followed up with a phone call to check “if you’ve had a chance to read our release”.

No. I haven’t. And I won’t. I never asked to receive them in the first place. We don’t have any sort of a relationship. You don’t even know who I am or what I do, other then what’s in the “NAME” and “WEBSITE” field in your spreadsheet or CRM software.

Is this what modern PR is all about these days? 

Read moreHow PR fails at Blogger Outreach

Your Brand. In 3 Tweets.

Twitter and Social Media Branding

Did you know you can either earn or lose a customer for life in just three tweets?

We make snap decisions all the time. Our brain, in an effort to speed things up and reduce workload, automatically creates certain shortcuts. These come in all sorts of varieties. For example, when you drove into work this morning, do you remember any of the cars or houses you drove by? Chances are you may vaguely recall some visuals or sounds, but not in a very crystal clear way. Some refer to this as “autopilot”. Well it turns out that there are autopilots for all sorts of activities and thought processes. One of those is how we experience a brand. On Twitter. Let’s elaborate.

Read moreYour Brand. In 3 Tweets.

5 Simple Social Media Tips

Best Social Media Tips 2012

Few days ago I was asked to submit Top 10 Social Media tips for businesses for a local paper. Chances are that by now, you’ve seen hundreds, if not thousands of these and most of the time they’re either extremely vague (“Engage the Audience” anyone?) or of little practical use. So I tried to really boil things down to a simple, effective few that anyone can understand and use and I came up with 5. Here they are:

Read more5 Simple Social Media Tips

Rising Barrier of Social Media

Social Media Saturation & Differentiation

As we move further along the adoption curve, from early adopters to early majority and onward to late majority, the business of social media is shifting as well. If you are a marketer, chances are that you’ve already started moving from WHAT to HOW. From setting up social media profiles to connecting online activities with business objectives. A couple of years ago, it was almost enough to just set up a Facebook page and do very little in order to attract fans and followers. This is no longer the case.

Read moreRising Barrier of Social Media

What is Content Marketing?

What is Content Marketing

2012 seems to be the year of Content Marketing. It’s everywhere. When you have global organizations such as Coca Cola committing their strategic and marketing resources to content marketing, it’s a significant enough shift to warrant a deeper look. To me, it seemed like a repackaging of the term “Social Media Marketing”, so I thought to investigate and share some of those findings here.

Read moreWhat is Content Marketing?

3 Brass Tacks of Engagement

Social Media Engagement and ROI

The term “engagement” has been tossed around like a wet sock at a college dorm for a while now. If you were to play a drinking game, taking a shot every time a presenter said “engage the audience” at a social media conference… I don’t believe you’d be awake to see 10AM. So, let’s take a moment and see what this “engagement” is really all about.

Read more3 Brass Tacks of Engagement

Value of free advice

Washington Post recently performed a social experiment inside of a DC Metro stop where they planted a world famous violinist to play during rush hour to see how many people would actually stop to “hear the music”. As you can see in the video below, very few people took the time to listen. That night, Joshua Bell sold out a concert hall at $100 per seat.

I recently joined a gym in the neighbourhood, mostly due to it’s convenient location. Before making a 6 month contract commitment, I made sure to look at what others had to say online. The last three Google Reviews for the place were less then flattering and you can see them below.

Read moreValue of free advice

Why You Suck at Social Media

Why you Suck at Social Media - Fail

This article was literally JUST inspired by a podcast interview I listened to, in which a certain executive coach and consultant goes on to berate Twitter as a waste of time. Well Sylva, let’s dance…

By the way: following applies equally to virtually anyone who gripes that social media is a waste of time.

Read moreWhy You Suck at Social Media

Social Media Paradox: Fans or Brand first?

Social Media Marketing Business Paradox

What came first… Chicken or the egg?

It’s a fun little causality dilemma, stemming from the time of Aristotle, that’s supposed to get you thinking. Let’s take that idea and bring it into the modern digital communications realm.

As a brand facing the question of where to invest your time and efforts when it comes to social media, how do you go about making the right decision? Do  you work on reaching out, connecting with potential fans, creating buzz and word of mouth OR do you try and create brand headquarters for others to find and gather around first? Let’s look at those options in detail.

Read moreSocial Media Paradox: Fans or Brand first?

Top 10 Social Media Tools & Tips

Top 10 Social Media Tools and Tips

In the last episode of The Uncut Marketing Podcast of this year, Kevin and I go over the Top 10 Tools and Tips for social media and digital marketing from 2011. These include reputation monitoring, online collaboration tools and ideas and insights about social media strategy and much much more. Have a listen:

 

[powerpress]

Read moreTop 10 Social Media Tools & Tips

Twitter Changes and G+ Brand Pages – Uncut Marketing Podcast

 

Twitter recently sprung some “interesting” changes to their online presence. We’re now seeing some blatant Facebook rip-offs as well as some unwelcome changes when it comes to our personal feeds. Join us as we discuss this and the recently launched Google Brand pages in addition to the effect social media has on SEO. As you’ll notice in the podcast, we are looking for suggestions for the show name. If you have any, please post them in the comment section below or contact one of us on twitter.

Read moreTwitter Changes and G+ Brand Pages – Uncut Marketing Podcast

Social CRM, Klout and Sponsored Tweets – Uncut Marketing Podcast

Social Media Podcast

A long time in the works, we finally have the first episode of the Kevin & Ernest Show produced and ready to go! In this pilot episode, join us as we discuss value of Social CRM, recent changes to the Klout algorithm and what that means for you. We also chat about the value of sponsored tweets and they mean for each of us as more brands start getting into the social space.

Read moreSocial CRM, Klout and Sponsored Tweets – Uncut Marketing Podcast

Here’s to the crazy ones…

Although Steve Jobs passed a few days ago, it took a while for the real impact to sink in for me. I had no personal connection with Steve and didn’t even like Apple products until 2009 when I made the switch.

What made me reflect on his passing is the fact that Steve was a visionary. Without him, who knows what our world would be like today. This is not a light statement. He personally had a significant impact in ALL of our lives. It’s only because of his vision and drive that we have personal computers the way they are today and that we have such wonderful and powerful pieces of technology in our pockets.

Read moreHere’s to the crazy ones…

The Human Factor

Social Media Strategy - The Human Factor

Do you get surprised or even excited when you phone a company and a REAL person answers the phone? It seems ridiculous that we’ve come to this point of total disconnection, while our basic human need is to connect and relate to each other. Want a competitive advantage? Here it is:

Read moreThe Human Factor

Value of traditional media in a digital world

Traditional vs New Media Marketing

Marketers, Speakers, Authors, Consultants… almost everyone… tend to pit the “old” media (newspapers, radio & TV) vs “new” media (digital, social media, mobile). While there are still many pockets of resistance when it comes to understanding the power of digital, it’s quite obvious things are not like they used to be. Recent survey by Forbes indicates that more brands are voting with their dollars and shifting spending to digital. Is this the right thing to do? Does digital represent the future of marketing?

Read moreValue of traditional media in a digital world

5.5 Best Social Media Books

Best Social Media Books

“What is the best social media book” – I often get asked. We are all curious as to what is the best approach when it comes to social media and we are all looking for that silver bullet, a formula for success. Although I haven’t found a book with all the answers, the selection below will certainly help with developing your own idea:

Read more5.5 Best Social Media Books

2 Social Media Management Models

Social Media Management

The following article is based on conversations I’ve had with companies, non-profits, clients and some of my own theories. The question is: What is the best way to approach social media marketing from a corporate resource management perspective. I believe there are two ways to do so effectively:

Read more2 Social Media Management Models

Winter of our Disconnect: Going Offline

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION. Going offline. At least one day a week.

Since RIM sprung the Crackberry on us a few years ago, there’s been a constant and consistent movement to being connected… ALL THE TIME. It’s not uncommon to see people on vacation thumbing mobile phones checking work e-mail, paying half attention at lunch with a client or even while having dinner with family. I’m guilty of this myself… I actually rebuilt

Read moreWinter of our Disconnect: Going Offline

Lifestyle Branding: An Apple Experience

Some of you may know I switched to Mac last year [edit: and haven’t looked back]. Since then I’ve had to deal with a couple of minor issues and every time it’s been a great experience. In fact, it’s been a great experience from the moment I walked into the store after almost getting ushered out of the Sony store across the hall.

When you walk into an Apple store… it’s exactly what you expect.

What Apple achieved in the world of business and marketing is truly astounding and inspiring. They’ve consistently (especially in the last decade) managed to tune into the minds of their target audience. Apple has created a marketing mecca we all strive to achieve at some point. They created a lifestyle brand.

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The Tipping Point Summary and Review

I recently finished reading ‘The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell.

This is one of the best consumer psychology/business books I read in a while. Malcolm explores principles of viral marketing, backing up his findings with a great deal of research, interviews, and data. Even though this book is several years old, the ideas discussed are very relevant and can certainly be applied in any business situation, including today’s grim economic environment.

The Tipping Point focuses on three concepts, necessary to create a point where an idea gets a life of its own and spreads like wildfire. I would consider this the key principles of viral marketing, although Malcolm doesn’t refer to it that way. The following is a short summary and ideas behind The Tipping Point:

Law of the Few – Malcolm believes the following three groups of people are necessary to ‘tip’ an idea. Some of us may belong to one or more of these groups, but the most pronounced characteristics of each are easily spotted:

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Is Social Media Marketing right for your business?

Twitter this… Facebook that, Digg the other thing… By now, you must be familiar with the buzzwords and may have even used them in a sentence (We use Facebook to stay in touch with our clients) or perhaps as a verb ( shut the tweet up ).

Social media is seen as a holy grail of new marketing and one thing I noticed with some of the companies I worked with, as well as in the marketplace, it’s sort of a bandwagon they get on, don’t really know what the objective is, hang around for a while and then let their social media presence die a slow and unknown death.

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