I’ve decided to kick off the holiday weekend with a little live blogging from a social media hotspot in Boulder! This morning a number of us GFMers are participating in a social media workshop (Social Media and PR in the Digital Age) put on by the Boulder Chamber and the Small Business Development Center. Our own Laura Love is currently moderating a panel with TechStar’s Andrew Hyde, The Camera’s Kevin Kaufman, Filtrbox’s Ari Newman and ColoradoBiz’s Mike Cote discussing the changing social media and PR landscape. While I feel like I’ve attended hundreds of these discussions it’s amazing that the content is ALWAYS different. Twitter seems to be the hottest discussion topic right now and how companies can use to get their news out and learn what people are saying about their businesses.
Other interesting insight and advice from the social media junkie panel:
- Be sure to start off your social media program by listening! What is the social media universe saying about you and your company now?
- Find the social media channel that makes you excited to participate and get involved in that channel. If you like it, you’re more likely to do it more often.
- Show your personality!
- Be honest, authentic and transparent.
- Check out what your competitors and others in your industry are doing on social media. It’s a great way to get ideas!
- Check out Twitter in Plain English video – a great explanation about what is Twitter.
- Demographics for social media channels are all across the board. Twitter seems to skew older than Facebook and Facebook skews older than MySpace.
- It’s more important to have good your content rather than just frequent content.
- Handheld video is a great way to add an extra punch to your social media campaign. It doesn’t have to be professionally shot video.
- Top pitfalls to avoid: don’t pretend to be something you’re not; be sure to take advantage of the tracking tools available; remember you’re having conversations in a permanent, public archive – think twice before you post; be conversational, not a corporate robot
- Take a few deep breaths and have two people review your response before responding to an angry post.
- Social media is a skill set that is essential for all marketers and PR pros today.
- Check out LinkedIn for B2B companies.
Last words of advice:
- Kevin: be brave and curious and explore
- Ari: Don’t get focused on the tool; social media is bigger than a single tool
- Andrew: Google is your home page. Have a personal blog and a company blog.
- Mike: Get ready.