Social Media – a Record of Visceral Reactions

Boston tweets and posts Sprout Social 2013-04-16

Just how valuable is Social Media in tragic times?

In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings, April 15th, 2013 – Patriot’s Day, Social Media reminded us of how important it is to maintain our human connection – especially in times of tragedy.

If I hadn’t had my Facebook account open on my laptop while working in other windows, I wouldn’t have noticed a friend’s notification about the 2 bomb explosions. She is a runner and a police officer, and was keen on the event and therefore a reliable source. Yes, I went to my television to see the live coverage, but I had my laptop with me as I wanted to continue learning more from any social media updates while I was still working. I knew that at least some of my social media friends, followers and connections might have loved ones or someone they knew participating or attending the marathon, or, actually living in Boston. So I also opened my Sprout Social management tool so that I could follow Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook messaging and keyword search feeds all on one page.

It’s about getting closer to the reality

Reading tweets, posts, and updates is not just informative, but it is a keen indicator of the visceral reactions of anyone who has any connection to the incident and the reactions of anyone worldwide who is “listening” on these platforms. Live TV gave the visuals and the reporters updates, but my social media accounts gave me the heart and soul of America – and the world – on the most human level possible.

  • Did you track your social media accounts during this horrific incident?
  • What value was it to you vs. traditional reporting avenues?
  • Did social media offer comfort because of the direct connection to the event?

40 Years since the 1st Cell Phone Call – a Retrospective

Picturephones never made it…

Mashable posted this morning about today making 40 years since the first cell phone call. I had to stop and calculate how young I was at the time…

Ok – so I was in high school

…and we were happy enough having a phone extension in the bedroom (for you Gen x & Yers, an extension was the teen’s only way to get out of the hall to have a private conversation!) Back then, our parents were panicking that they couldn’t hear all of our conversations anymore. We teens were always worried someone would pick up the other line and listen. Nothing compared to today’s worries over teens and the internet!

So who cared?

I don’t recall knowing anything about this new cellular technology. But then, that is how it was with most inventions in that era. New inventions splashed on the evening news and then disappeared. You learned it was best to not to get too excited because many of these earth changing discoveries tended never to get to the masses due to the huge expense of production.

A great example was Jetson’s style visual communication that featured in the Ma Bell “Future” section of the State Fair (above image) year after year. It was a big flop. Of course, now, the internet has taken over that function with Skype and other internet options. Oddly, visual communication finally surfaced without the use of telephones.

Marketing Potential?

So in light of the simplistic perception we all had about the power of visual communication back then, the only advantage we saw to Picturephones was the ability to see who was on the other end of the line. And we weren’t always sure that we wanted to BE seen! The first concern was whether there was an OFF button!

Never was there any discussion as to the marketing possibilities that would come with portable visual capabilities. After all, this was the era of newspapers, magazines, billboards and only 3 TV networks.

Similar to the beginnings of Social Media, it was just about communication and that’s all. Now, the primary discussion is all in Market-speak.

As with all inventions, you never really know what ultimate usage will evolve, but one thing you can be sure of, someone in marketing will always be asking:

How can we use this to reach our consumer? ;)

From Skadeedle [Infographic]: Email Marketing Etiquette Dos & Don’ts

Email Marketers! You can’t afford NOT to address each point on the infographic below! Don’t risk an “Opt-out” or an unsubscribe because you overlooked what you might think of as a minor detail. Skadeedle is my favorite new Small Business marketing source. Here’s a fantastic Infographic they created that hits every nail on the head when it comes to what email marketers often overlook. Every single point on both the dos and don’ts are often dismissed or overlooked.

Perhaps #6 Do is the most underused: Include alt text (for those who don’t render images). This has become more important than ever with SmartPhone use on the exponential increase for opening email.

For better results in your email marketing – PRINT THIS OUT and keep it handy for every time you send an email to market your business!

Email Marketing Etiquette Dos & Don’ts [Infographic] - An Infographic from Skadeedle

Embedded from Skadeedle

Just Because We Have the Online Sharing Tools, Do We ALWAYS Have to Share, RT, Like…?

Let him who would enjoy a good future waste none of his present. Roger Babson

It’s just too easy to waste valuable time. Being online can sometimes become like getting sucked into a vortex of time-wasting hell!

In the “old” days, if we wanted to share a piece of news, a funny joke, an interesting article, or some personal event, we had to actually either call or personally talk to someone, or send them a message via snail mail.


  • Click Like
  • Click Share
  • ReTweet
  • Forward
  • Click a social sharing bookmarklet
  • Request to be emailed on ALL comments to a discussion

…The convenience tools are a list a mile long and it is just too damned easy!

So just because we have all these CONVENIENT(?) online tools, do we have to use them all the time?!

Think about when we had to do it the old way.  We didn’t share EVERYthing! (I am assuming my readers are old enough to remember telephones that had cords and the USPS actually delivered handwritten personal letters).

So when we complain that there is just not enough time to look at all the stuff in our inbox of emails, announcements and newsletters, our multiple social media feeds, our RSS feeds, our bookmarked sites, ad infinitum… it’s time to reassess our priorities.

1. Start with what YOU share. Don’t add to the glut. Take a breath before you share…

Stop for a moment before hitting one of those sharing buttons – think from a new perspective – if you had to take the time to text, call, email someone about what you are about to share or comment on …would you?

2. Inbox never empty? Whose fault is that ;)

If you find yourself repeatedly deleting messages from the same source, it’s either time to consider the unsubscribe button or create a filter for that email to go directly into a folder and skip the inbox. Then YOU choose when it’s in your view and can’t be distracted by it when other items should take priority.

3. Stop turning on the Merry-Go Round!

If you send an email for group review, be careful to only address one point at a time. We’ve all seen it.  A merry-go-round of responses addressing different points from the same email and nothing gets accomplished because it becomes a ball of confusion – and a huge waste of time on all ends with no final consensus.

Bottom Line? Slow down a little…. Really.   What would be your Number 4?

How to avoid email overload – reblog

I ran across this post on Twitter and felt compelled to share it with you. I, too, am inundated with emails and am frustrated with the amount of time they consume. The tips in this article are spot on for managing your emails and your day!


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