Introducing: Leah’s Weekly Round-Up

I read a lot of blogs and find a lot of interesting things on the internet. Starting today, I will dedicate a post each week to the interesting and helpful things I find.

The theme will be similar to that of my blog: marketing, communications, PR and social media. I’ll also include links to job boards, if you are on the hunt for your next great move.

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Arik Hanson shares 13 REAL Chrome extensions community managers will find useful. I file this under “save for future reference”. Very interesting and great information, especially to those managing a brand’s social identities.

MIMA is hosting an event on January 16, 2013 called “Iteractive innovation in highly regulated industries”. I’ll be attending this, and it will definitely be an opportunity to network and learn.

Lisa Grimm‘s blog is one of the first I followed, and this post hit home. Last Friday, after the horrible scenes in Newtown, CT, the first thing I hated seeing was brands posting about their sales and products. Lisa says it perfectly in her post, How Brands Should Behave on Social Media During a Tragedy. 

From Yahoo! Finance – The 10 Skills That Will Get You Hired In 2013. With the importance of networking, I was surprised not to see that topic covered.

AdFed’s job board is always a great place to look for jobs and internships in the marketing/advertising/creative field.

There you have it! The first edition of Leah’s Weekly Round-Up. Are they any great marketing/PR/social media blogs you love and find useful that I should know about? Share in the comments! 

2011 Minnesota Blogger Conference Recap

On Saturday September 10th, 2011 I attended the Minnesota Blogger Conference held at Allina Commons in Minneapolis. The day started bright and early waiting in line for coffee and making connections. First of all, I’d like to give huge props to Missy Berggren and Arik Hanson. This day would not be in existence if was not for their idea to create it! It was also clear that the planning team worked well together and of their contributions are so very appreciated!  

Keynote – Lee Odden, Top Rank Marketing 

Lee was a great kick off to the event.  He channeled his inner Dr. Suess and presented his background information in rhyme form. He explained how Top Rank went from a basement start up the great company it is now.

 What you should know:

  • You have to have a reason WHY you’re blogging. You need a purpose; you need to make it clear. Someone should be able to figure out what your blog is about within 10 seconds of landing on the page.
  • Content is king but creativity is queen.

Session 1: Paul DeBettignies – Power Networking

This session was very relaxed. Paul didn’t speak at us, but rather was hosting a conversation. Paul was introduced and immediately turned the focus on the group. He asked anyone who was attending but didn’t know anyone to stand up and introduce themselves. In a group of about 50, this could be daunting to someone who may be bashful. One by one, people introduced themselves. There was back and forth conversation while introductions were being made. I was able to make an immediate connection with a woman who is involved with Ad Fed. I walked up to her afterwards, introduced myself and we ended up sitting together for the 2nd part of lunch!

What you should know

  • You’re always networking! This phrase pops into my head whenever I start a conversation with someone I know. And it is so true! You never know if the person you gave your business card to will need someone with your expertise down the line.
  • Know the cool kids. When I first decided that I wanted to join something, Ad Fed was the first place I went. I dove right in and joined a committee. I was very nervous to attend my first event but luckily I knew the cool kid. Cory Vandenberge is our leader on the special events committee and he is so great about introducing you to someone you don’t know at an event. I’m grateful for this and when Paul was talking about making sure you know someone at an event you’re attending, I immediately was reminded of Cory. I hope to return the favor to someone down the line.
  • Have a plan. If you can get a hold of the attendee list, scan the names and the organization they’re representing. Check out their website and LinkedIn profile. Make a point to find this person and introduce yourself.

Session 2: Panel – Building Communities Online and Offline

The panel

Kate O’Reilly was an awesome moderator. The panel speakers were Jen Emmert, Stephanie Meyer, Ian Schwartz and Meghan Wilker. Meghan talked about how #summerofdresses got started; Jen talked about how her blog has aided in her weight loss and she’s inspired others. I am glad that Ian was representing St. Paul and STP Tweetup!

What you should know

  • Have a designated host. If you’re planning a meet-up, make sure someone is in charge. This person should make a point to talk to everyone that is attending.
  • Know your venue. Make sure your venue has a good cell connection and having Wi-Fi would be great if it is possible.

Lunch: Taco Bar

Lunch was great. The taco bar was delicious. I was jealous of Jason Douglas for making a taco salad, I didn’t even think of that. I enjoyed the long lunch break. I spent the first half talking with a few people I knew and didn’t know and then enjoyed the second half with an almost stranger.

Session 3: Kate Hopper – Make Your Writing Sing

I was really looking forward to this session because I find myself being so uptight in my writing and having a hard time adding creative touches. Kate’s session was awesome; she is a natural teacher and a wonderful writer. She had us do two free writing exercises. Funny enough, both of mine ended up being about my Grandma. Grandma gives me great material and inspiration.

What you should know

  • Use concrete sensory details. Taste, touch, smell, sight and sound will add more to your writing than you’ll ever know.
  • “Words can change the world”, my favorite quote from Kate.
  • Free write. When you sit down to write, don’t think about the grammatical corrections or spelling. Just write what you feel and go back to edit.

Session 4: Erica Mayer –  Vlogging: Lessons to Learn from TV

Erica works for WCCO and has experience behind the camera. In fact, she’s a wonderful photographer and, from what I saw in her session, videographer as well. She had a wonderful way about her that made everyone in the room feel comfortable. She shared her experiences with the wonderful Don Shelby and learning that silence is greater than the word “um”. Even though I don’t have a desire to be a vlogger, her session was still very informational, interesting and fun! I was paying such close attention that I wasn’t even taking notes!

What you should know

  • Silence is greater than the word “um”.  Your viewers don’t want to hear you stumbling over every word.
  • How to not look fat on camera. I’m a pro at this, well, at least I think so. But, photos from a top angle will be more flattering. Same goes for videos. Set your camera up just above eye level.
  • Have a plan. Know what your purpose is, people have a short attention span.
  • Don’t use tools just because you have them. Maybe your video editing tools have the open to have floating hearts across the screen, don’t use it. I relate this to the font Comic Sans. Just because it exists does not mean it needs to be used. Ever.

Overall, I had an amazing time. I met some amazing people and great connections. I’m looking forward to seeing the things I learned come to life!

A huge thank you to the sponsors: Top Rank, Allina Health and Kare 11. The fact that the event was completely free and in amazing venue made it that much better! Also, huge thanks to Mandy of Glimpses of Soul photography! She donated her time to take head shot photos of any attendee that wanted them in return for a donation to Read Indeed, the charity for the event.

MN Blogger Conference

Tomorrow I am attending my first conference! It is the Minnesota Blogger Conference. I’m really looking forward to this event. Although I’m not an avid blogger, I think it will be nothing but beneficial for my professional career.

I will be attending the session by Paul DeBettignies on Power Networking. I’ve never officially learned how to network! I’ve attended many networking events and I think I do an adequate job of representing myself, but I’ll be curious to see what Paul has to say.

The other session I’m really looking forward to is called “Scene and Story: Make Your Writing Sing” and is hosted by Kate Hopper. I know how to write and I enjoy writing. Lately I’ve found that my writing is very business professional – and straight to the point. In my day job, I spend most of my time writing and it is very by-the-books and straightforward.

When I was approached to write a blog recap for Ad Fed’s Golferoo, I got nervous because most of my writing experience is so NOT creative. I was on the committee for the event and attending but I wasn’t sure how to add that extra “oomph”. I was able to collaborate with another committee member, Lacey Cobb, and together we wrote a great blog post. I focused on the backbone  and business of the blog and getting the images together while Lacey really added the extra personality that we needed. I hope that Kate’s session will teach me a little more about to really add some sparkle to my otherwise straightforward writing.

Finally, I’m excited to connect with a lot of people I’ve exchanged tweets with, people whose blogs I follow and others that will be attending! I will be armed with my networking cards, and smile and notebook to remember the most important information!

(And I can’t forget my appetite and breath mints as there is going to be a taco bar thanks to the wonderful sponsors of the conference!)

See you all tomorrow!

Social Science Night at the Science Museum of MN

 

Last night I attended the inaugural Social Science event at the Science Museum of Minnesota! I heard about the event via Twitter and went to the website to check it out. It seemed like a great event and I knew I wanted to attend!

The purpose of the evening, in my opinion, was to engage and entertain adults (21+) at the science museum. The museum was closed off to anyone under 21. We were able to explore the exhibits and different things the museum has to offer without children running around. They had drinks available at cash bars throughout as well as a couple of appetizers. The cafe was also open to purchase food.

I had a blast at the event. They had the option to see the King Tut exhibit, check out the omnitheater (both at additional cost), a photobooth, a DJ and dance floor and a “shadow pong” station!

For the first time of the event, I think it was a success! Everyone appeared to be having a great time. Occasional searches of #socialscience on Twitter showed what everyone was up to & tweeting about.

I think there are definite areas for improvement. The lines for everything were really long. I found that most of my evening was spent waiting in line. I didn’t MIND as I was socializing. I think next time they should have more stations. Since it was the first event, they may not have been able to rope in local food venues to cater and offer free samples. Now that the first event ended and went well, I think they could reach out to restaurants and show them how successful it was and any good restaurant would probably want to join!

It seems it will be a quarterly event, with each one themed after the current exhibit. Last night’s theme was “Party with the Pharohs”. The next one should be in late June and the outdoor patio will be open. I can’t wait to spend a summer night drinking some wine on the patio, overlooking the Mississippi River and downtown Saint Paul.

Social Media at the Science Museum of MN

The Science Museum of MN also does a great job with social media! They were interacting with those tweeting about the event and responding when people were asking when the next event was. On their website, they have the links to all of their different social media sites.

*note, I did not receive compensation for my personal review of the social science event. just wanted to share my experiences and spread the word!