Digital Strategy hosted by StartupChicks

StartupChicks hosted a Digital Strategy workshop/panel discussion with the following people/companies:

Moderator: Julie Cropp Gareleck of Junction Creative

Panelists:

Here is the general info that I (Kristina McInerny :: NotesFromKris) have interpreted from this panel discussion:

First and foremost this cannot be iterated enough: create your strategy on paper/digitally first.  You need to create a consistent customer experience across all channels.

Repeat the last paragraph 5 times slowly…

Breathe in.  Breathe out.  Continue.

Your focus is to create content that adds value.  Carve time out daily to blog, Tweet, Facebook, LinkIn, etc.  The more relevant content you have over time, the more you build your brand, your message, your deliverable.  Go back to that paragraph that you repeated 5 times (right?!).  Focus on your strategy and importantly, if you have employees, be sure that they are clearly clear on the message that they are portraying.  I personally would like to add that it’s still important in a digital world to have face to face meetings with your digital media group to discuss findings online, discuss what customers are saying online, discuss the clear message, brand and face you would like your company to portray.

From the very start, you should be clear on your target audience.  Find out first and foremost to whom you are delivering products or services.  Do your offerings target your market?  When you create promotions, think about your target.  Don’t send someone out in a purple monkey suit to hold photo shoots in the middle of the grocery store if your target audience doesn’t care about monkeys (purple?!), photo shoots or hanging out in the grocery store.

If you are a company that requires sales proposals, be sure that you have identified all direct and indirect stakeholders.  If you are a construction company, talk to your direct market who wants the building erected as well as the indirect stakeholder like the surrounding community.  Listen to the buzz, get out there on the pavement and talk to people (my examples).  If there is anyone that can affect a decision, you need to take them into consideration. [That part taken from my PM Certification courses.]

Don’t give up on the traditional forays out there.  Find out where your customers are buzzing.  Research all channels, do your demographic research and give it a try.  Maybe snail mailings aren’t so bad…maybe your customers are all on MySpace.  Keep your eyes and channels open and be aware of the one constant in consumerism; change.  Review your strategy over and over again.  Don’t let it collect dust.

There is one common thread; don’t give up on real relationships.  Your digital footprint resonates all throughout the digisphere (is that a term?), and sometimes the digital will precede the face-2-face.  Get out there and be social.  From NotesFromKris Advanced LinkedIn blog entry:  “9.  Be personable online, after all, it’s called Social Media, not Rude Media”

There were conflicting stories on which digital strategy each panelist chose.  The main thread was to create relevant and consistent content.

Tidbits:

  • focus on visuals from photos to video
  • create personal and professional pages on FB if you’re not fully comfortable combining the two aspects
  • don’t teach or blog at too high a level – again, know your audience – keep it simple
  • invest in brand when critical mass (my word) takes hold
  • don’t go for numbers, aim for quality targets
  • gain control over your content (own your server, maintain ability to copy/backup/retrieve your content)

StartupChicks Notes 2010:

  • Venture Atlanta Applications Due 8/20
  • September Event 9/13
  • October Event – Netowrking 10/20
  • Other Events
  • –StartupDrinks – 1st Tuesday of the Month
  • –FutureMedia Conference (10/4-7)
  • –Venture Atlanta (10/12-13)

After Party: Midcity Cafe 845 Spring Street, 30308 1/2 price martinis

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Advanced LinkedIn Training

Just completed a course with Brandy Nagel at Roam in Alpharetta, GA.  I’ve learned a few nuggets of wisdom that I didn’t have before definitely got my $29 + gas worth.  Here’s an overview of these nuggets of wisdom.

Constant repetition carries conviction.  – Robert Collier

Brandy Nagel (@benag: Twitter) – as summarized (and appended) by Kristina McInerny, NotesFromKris: Twitter.

LinkedIn Training for the Beginner to Intermediate User

First and foremost as an overall good measure – have you all done your homework on…..yourself?   Go ahead and Google or Bing or MSN or Yahoo! yourself.

Are there others with the same name?  Are they reputable?   Is there someone out there with your name that is running a Russian Crime Ring or is listed with the BBB negatively?

1.  If you have ‘competition’ out there with other motives, you need to discern yourself from the crowd.  Suggestions:

  • add a middle initial
  • append your credentials
  • be creative

2.  “Keywords” should be used in your Summary or Specialties area of LinkedIn (Edit Profile); work experience should reflect that image you wish to portray.  (I need some more work on mine to focus on Management experience instead of Programming.)  Be specific, be creative.

3.  Use the LinkedIn Applications to enhance your online presence.  Show that you can go above and beyond the crowd.

4.  Search “Who’s Viewed Me”; if you really want to know who ‘someone’ is…pay for the upgrade, but if you are satisfied with the ‘someone from abc company’ view, then carry on.  You want to know if you are targeting the correct audience.

5.  Review each ‘Setting’ in your LinkedIn account.  Do you want everyone to be notified when you update your profile for a misspelling?  Check your Member Feed Visibility.

  • Set a reminder in your calendar to review these settings quarterly as well as reviewing your contacts – if you wouldn’t recommend them, then why are they in your business network?
  • Do you want all of  your recommendations to be seen by everyone?  Does it matter how much you’ve complimented anyone?  Does it matter that someone recommended you because you were a nice person that dressed nicely?
  • Manage your groups wisely; either hide controversial material or don’t join them – unless that is your focus…

6.  If you use Outlook, there is an Outlook Toolbar add-on you can install that will integrate with your contact list.

  • Also available for Outlook is Xobni.com to track your contacts’ social media profile.

7.  Are you part of a company?  Do you have a LinkedIn Company profile?  Why not?  Don’t let someone else snag it.  It will add credibility to your organization be it Solepreneur or Corporation.

  • Use www.NameChk.com to find the holes in your Social Media Profile (SMP – yes, I coined that phrase and will be using it from this point forward).  What’s your SMT score? (see first paragraph)

8.  The magic number is 175 contacts.  To increase your SMP, you need to start thinking.  You know more people than you think you know.  And remember…these are people who are going to be part of your business network.  Would YOU want to work with them?  When you send out an invite, be sure to make it personal.

9.  Be personable online, after all, it’s called Social Media, not Rude Media.

10.  Request recommendations; if you are too shy to ask for a recommendation, then start writing them for someone who impressed you in the past.  Be sincere, don’t gush.  You’ll be surprised at the return rate.  If you have zero, aim for 5 so create 10-15 recommendations.

11.  Review your profile.

  • if you can apply the adjectives you’ve used on your dog (honest, loyal, good worker…), get rid of them.  They don’t add value.
  • keep it focused on your goal

Hope this has been helpful!

If you wish to elaborate or find out when Facebook Training In Your Face will be held.  NotesFromKris at Gmail dot com