Social Media Success Summit – 2015

SMSS-2015Social Media Success Summit 2015 is a special online conference designed to help you master social media marketing (brought to you by Social Media Examiner

Dozens of the world’s leading social media pros will show you how they succeed with social. Instructors include Mari Smith (co-author, Facebook Marketing: An Hour a Day), Mark Schaefer (author, Social Media Explained), Michael Stelzner (founder, Social Media Examiner), Neal Schaffer (author, Maximize Your Social), Amy Porterfield (co-author, Facebook Marketing All-In-One for Dummies), Christopher Penn (author, Marketing White Belt), Ian Cleary (co-author, Success Secrets of the Online Marketing Superstars), Jon Loomer, and Viveka von Rosen (author, LinkedIn Marketing an Hour a Day).

This event is completely online, which means you can attend from the comfort of your home or office.

Register today for Social Media Success Summit. Click here to learn more.

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Writing as a Designer

desk-and-penIt is ironic that a time when we have so much content in various formats and on different forums, there remains a vacuum in information.  It would appear that instead of sharing knowledge, there is a lot of noise generation.

The herd mentality has taken over the content creation arena.

People seem to think that throwing around popular (often misunderstood) terms such as “personae”, “editorial calendar”, and “reciprocity”, they can magically transform poorly researched article into insight.  Not so.  The truth is that no matter how many catch phrases they mimic, the underlying shallow creative process shows through.  This begs the question:  why do content marketers bother investing time and financial resources in a strategy that will not deliver on business integrity and growth?

As business writers and content creators, we need to drop the charade.  We need to invest in more credible motivation.  If we can’t find it within ourselves, we can borrow from other practitioners.  I have looked around and I’m happy to say there is an abundance of good practices business writers can adopt to nurture our skill.

My latest source of inspiration is the design field.  Somehow we all know when things are “designed right” – they give us a glimpse of what makes good design.  It turns out that it is no accident; there are fundamentals of good design.  I imagine all good designers know them and consistently deploy them in their craft.

I think good business writers need to define and commit to some fundamentals.

Before we begin stringing together our words, we need to start with basics like questions.  What is the problem? Why is it important? Why is it important that we understand it correctly?  What are the consequences of addressing the wrong issue or providing the wrong answer?  Is this a ground-breaking topic?  Is there a current consensus on solutions?  The more questions we raise, the more open we are to critical thinking.

Questions help us clarify.  Questions help us uncover what we might otherwise miss.  They help focus on the essentials.  They help us define the parameters of best solutions and write convincingly about them.

My search has shown me that good designers are skilled at asking questions.  For them, no question is silly if it helps the design process.  I am honing my question-asking skill and learning some of the basics of design, which might help me do a better job as a business writer.

Here are 3 things I have learned so far:

  1. Design is truly a process; not a task.  Process denotes a method, intent, a procedure, a course of action while a task often denotes a chore or an assignment.  The way I see it, adopting a process approach is more likely to expand expertise and efficiency.  It is more likely to diminish reliance on rote mentality inherent in a task approach.
  2. Even if the project is not an original idea (it may have been done a million times before), it is important to find a way to instill some creativity.  I agree that it is not necessary to reinvent the wheel.  However, it is important not to simply echo others.  Good designers replicate purposefully.  The challenge is to make each final product memorable.
  3. You are on the right track if your process includes these 3 fundamentals:
  • Looking        →  see/prioritize/understand
  • Thinking      →  research/sort/organize
  • Doing            →  informed action/draft/edit/finalize/share

It is fairly obvious that skipping any of these basics undermines the design process.  In terms of good business writing, failure to pay proper attention to the LOOK, THINK, DO aspects weakens the impact of the content we create.

My challenge to my fellow business writers is to toss that template that promises to help you generate a-hundred-and-one unique articles and white papers effortlessly.  Sounds great, but (always) true.  Let’s spend a little more time (I know, who has more time?) on the fundamentals.  It may mean that we write less volume, but it could mean that what we do write will be a cut above the rest – and memorable.

 

 

©Rachel Agheyisi, Report Content Writer, Report Content Writer’s Blog

Learn How To Master Facebook Marketing

Facebook Success Summit 2012

I wanted to let you know that Social Media Examiner has announced its newest online summit. It is the Facebook Success Summit 2012Act now and save 50% (offer expires on Thursday, September 20, 2012).

This is a fully online conference designed to help your business quickly implement effective Facebook marketing strategies and tactics so you can gain more exposure, build a more loyal following and grow your business.

The lineup of instructors includes the world’s top Facebook marketing experts and authors such as:

  •  Mari Smith (co-author, Facebook Marketing),
  • Dave Kerpen (author, Likeable Social Media),
  • Amy Porterfield (co-author, Facebook Marketing All-In-One for Dummies),
  • John Haydon (co-author, Facebook Marketing for Dummies),
  • Brian Carter (author, The Like Economy),
  • Mark Schaefer (author, Return on Influence),
  • Chris Treadaway (co-author, Facebook Marketing),
  • Jesse Stay (author, Facebook Application Development for Dummies),
  • Andrea Vahl (co-author, Facebook Marketing All-In-One for Dummies),
  • Phyllis Khare (co-author, Facebook Marketing All-In-One for Dummies) and
  • Experts from Campbell’s Soup, Intel, 24 Hour Fitness and Autodesk.

JUST SO YOU KNOW —–

These events bring the best of physical conferences (great learning and networking) directly to your computer.

  •  This means no travel and none of the expenses you’d expect with most events.
  •  We spread the live event over four weeks (to accommodate your schedule) and
  •  You’d get all session recordings AND transcripts.
  •  And the cool part: These summits are very affordable!  You can get in on the 50%-off sale if you act now.

Here’s what Facebook Success Summit 2012 will cover:

  •  Facebook marketing strategy
  • Growing and managing a Facebook following
  • Generating leads and selling with Facebook
  • Newsfeed optimization, metrics and analytics
  • Facebook promotions and advertising
  • And much more!

Go here to see all the details.  . Get a free sample class from our last summit by clicking here and looking for the yellow box in the sidebar.

Remember,

 You can get in at half price if you register early.

This event does not require any travel.  You simply attend sessions and network with peers from the comfort of your home or office!!

REGISTER TODAY!

Social Media Success Summit 2012

You are invited to join 27 social media experts for the largest online social Media conference.  Social Media Success Summit 2012 is a special online conference designed to help you master social media marketing.

 This event is brought to you by Social Media Examiner.

A carefully selected group of well-known social media experts will serve as your instructors.  The list includes:

 Jeremiah Owyang (Altimeter Group),
Chris Brogan (author, Google+ for Business),
Mari Smith (co-author, Facebook Marketing),
Brian Solis (author, Engage),
Jay Baer (co-author, The Now Revolution),
Jason Falls (author, No Bullshit Social Media),
Frank Eliason (author, @YourService),
Michael Stelzner (founder, Social Media Examiner),
Mark Schaefer (author, The Tao of Twitter),
Dave Kerpen (author, Likeable Social Media),
Jesse Stay (author, Google+ for Dummies),
C.C. Chapman (co-author, Content Rules),
Kipp Bodnar (co-author, The B2B Social Media Book),
Amy Porterfield (co-author, Facebook Marketing All-in-One for Dummies)

 Other instructors include experts from LinkedIn, Dell, Ford, Citigroup and Citrix.

  Check the bios on these pros here.

 Here’s a sampling of the topics the summit will cover:

  •  Developing a social media strategy
  • Finding and engaging your target audience
  • Measuring success
  • Converting activities to sales
  • Social customer service
  • Google+ marketing, business blogging, Facebook marketing, LinkedIn marketing, YouTube marketing, Twitter marketing, Pinterest marketing and more!

 Go here to see all the sessions.

HERE IS ADDITIONAL GREAT NEWS

The conference organizers have just added seventeen great bonuses worth more than $990 for early registrants.  These are high-value video courses.  When you sign up for the event, you get all of these included at no extra cost!

Here’s a sample of the valuable bonuses they are giving away:

  •  7 Unique Blogging Strategies to Explode Your Company’s Traffic, Trust Factor and Brand
  • 5 Ways to Use Social Media to Drive People to Your Local Business
  • Proven Social Media Strategies to Rapidly Grow Your Business
  • How to Hug Your Calculator: The 6-Step Process for Measuring Social Media
  • How to Develop a Raving Facebook Fan Base for Your Business

CLICK HERE for a sample class — it’ll give you an idea of what’s in store.

 Plan to attend the full conference!

The Most Common Strategy Mistakes

I recently read this article from the Harvard Business School Working Knowledge newsletter.  It is an excerpt of an interview between the author (Joan Magretta) and Michael E. Porter, renowned authority on competition and strategy.

 Even though it is an excerpt, the Q & A format touches on the key mistakes we all can relate to as business operators.  They are the sort of missteps we wish we could avoid.  They are wasteful of time and other resources; yet we appear unable (perhaps unwilling) to remedy the situation.

 According to the interview, businesses make several common strategy mistakes, including the following:

  1. The biggest of all mistakes is competing to be the best, going down the same path as everybody else and thinking that somehow you can achieve better results.  This is a hard race to win.  So many managers confuse operational effectiveness with strategy.
  2. Another common mistake is confusing marketing with strategy.  It’s natural for strategy to arise from a focus on customers and their needs.  So in many companies, strategy is built around the value proposition, which is the demand side of the equation.  But a robust strategy requires a tailored value chain — it’s about the supply side as well, the unique configuration of activities that delivers value.
  3. It is a mistake to overestimate strengths.  This is indicative of an inward-looking bias observed in many organizations.
  4. A common mistake is getting the definition of the business wrong, or getting the geographic scope wrong. Are you really a global operation?
  5. The worst mistake — and the most common one — is not having a strategy at all.  Most executives think they have a strategy when they really don’t, at least not a strategy that meets any kind of rigorous, economically grounded definition.

 As I indicated in the opening paragraph, these mistakes are familiar.  We are guilty of committing some, or all, and know of businesses in the same trap. Why then do these mistakes persist?  What is responsible for the failure to strategize –in the economically meaningful sense?

 According to Porter, many barriers distract, deter, and divert managers from making clear strategic choices.  Some of the most significant barriers come from the many hidden biases embedded in internal systems, organizational structures, and decision-making processes.

 He sums things up as follows: “Strategy links choices on the demand side with the unique choices about the value chain (the supply side). You can’t have competitive advantage without both” – Michael E. Porter.

CLICK HERE to read the article.  There is a link to information about Joan Magretta’s book, which distills Porter’s core concepts and frameworks into a concise guide for business practitioners.

 

 

© Rachel Agheyisi, Report Content Writer, Report Content Writer’s Bolg, 2012

How Is Your Writing?

Guilty as charged!  Yes, those of us who make our living as business writers sometimes live in “another world” and write in a manner that is meaningful to the relatively few inhabitants of that world.  Our sophistication becomes synonymous with how many codes and industry jargon we can throw into the narrative.  The benefit for the intended reader (who, in the b2b marketplace, is usually the customer), is completely relegated to secondary consideration.

 The result is miscommunication, failure to communicate, missed opportunities, and wasted resources.

 If all of this sounds familiar, there’s help.

 I recommend this report (The Gobbledygook Manifesto) from David Meerman Scott.  It is intelligent and straight-to-the-point.  Among other things, he states this “golden” rule worth repeating:  “when you write, start with your buyers, not with your product” (page 7). It looks like a great mantra for writers everywhere, myself included.

 Do yourself a favor; click here and grab a copy of this report.

© Rachel Agheyisi, Report Content Writer, Report Content Writer’s Blog, 2012

 

What Is Your Marketing Strategy?

David Meerman Scott“Imagine you’re the head of marketing at a theme park, and you’re charged with announcing a major new attraction.  What would you do?

 That’s how David Meerman Scott introduces this manual (ebook) he published in 2008.

 He goes on to share some of his insights on the power of viral marketing using resources that are (now) readily available to everyone.  These resources/tools include  free and informative Web content, a network of people to light the fire (a.k.a., “fire starters”, “rainmakers”), and links that make content sharing easy.  He explains how these relatively obvious tools become phenomenal in the mind and hands of the creative marketer.

 We can all tap into, and replicate the viral marketing success formula.

 CLICK HERE to get your free copy of this informative manual.

 

©Rachel Agheyisi, Report Content Writer, Report Content Writer’s Blog, 2012