Tag Archive: all over albany

Yesterday, I attended the Liberteks Smalbany 5th Annual Small Business day at the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering.  I was invited to be a Guest VIP Blogger and take some pictures for the event.  I didn’t get to take many pictures, but I did get to sit in on some pretty good seminars about how social media can help grow your business.

I was going to sit down and write a long, drawn out blog series about what was said, by whom in each seminar.  I decided against that, because almost everyone said the exact same thing:

Your business needs to be active on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

As someone who has been using Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook for a few years, this was not news to me.  For those looking to drive more traffic to their company, this was an excellent place to spend the day learning how the web can work for you.  It was nice to see that these methods have been effective for many other businesses and continue to drive business to their sites.

I wanted to highlight some of the key parts of the seminars that I thought would be of importance to my readers and keep this from being a novel that no one wants to finish.  So, here are some of the best parts, in my opinion, of course.

The first speaker I heard from was Lisbeth Calandrino.  She was full of spunk and looked nothing like her claimed age of 70.  Lisbeth told us that being partners with your customers is a must.  She also mentioned that Sam’s club asked their small business customers what they need to stay in business, and they replied “money”.

Lydia Kulbida led a panel of bloggers and also offered a very important piece of advice for using online media to sell your product – Read it out loud to yourself.  Would you want to buy it?  Great advice.  Plus, she like LOST, so she’s OK in my book!

Mary Darcy from All Over Albany backed this theory up by saying “would you tell this to someone else?”  I really enjoyed Mary’s feedback on how she gets information to post on the AOA blog.  I wish she had more time to talk, as it was not only informative, but very interesting.

Mike Huber led a panel called Local Social Media and Your Customers.  He asked about blogging and tweeting – why would you want to do it, and why would people care?  Sonya Stark said to create lists.  People love lists.  Lisa D’Aquanni and Vic Christopher shared some great  information about blogging and what it can do for your business.

My favorite panelist was Rev. Al Rudnick.  I am not huge on religion, but he explained how people are using Twitter and Facebook during church and how they encourage it.  They even project it on a large screen so people can see it and participate.  I think I will try this on Sunday.  I bet the people in our church wont be as accepting…

Rhea Drysdale from Outspoken Media put on a great presentation about the Mobile revolution.  She detailed how Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare play a huge part in the mobile arena.  Rhea mentioned that you should protect your brand.  Make sure you get your company name on every outlet you can.

Alexis Grant (@AlexisGrant) held a great seminar about Using Social Media For Your Job Hunt.  She recommended three ways to make the web work for you;

Facebook – They are more likely to help you because you are already friends.

Twitter – Network outside of your friends.  Prove yourself as an expert.  Make connections with companies and employers.  Connect with people through Twitter that you might have been too intimidated to talk to at a job fair.

I think this event was a huge success.  It offered many great ways to promote your small business with social media.  Thanks to Tim Cronin and Larry Zimbler for letting me be a part of this event.  I hope to participate again next year.

So you think you can blog?

Last night, I attended the Times Union’s “Media 2010: How Blogs Shape The New Conversation” at the St. Rose campus in Albany.  This was the first time the Times Union had held this type of event, and I think it went very well.  A few of their top bloggers were tapped to explain how blogging works, how to build a following, and the influence it has on the public.

A few points that I remember off the top of my head are the following;

  • 1/3 of readers only read the paper
  • 1/3 of readers only read online
  • 1/3 of readers read blogs and the paper
  • The TU blogs have an average of about 1,300 comments  day
  • There are currently 155 blogs on the TU site

There were  few more points, but I did not write them down.  One thing that really bothered me that they touched on was anonymity.  Someone spoke about allowing anonymous commenters to say whatever they want.   I think this is a horrible idea.  Anyone can talk trash hiding behind their keyboard and not have to suffer and consequences.  I think it is a cowardly way to act.  They should require every commenter to use a name.  Granted, people could still make up a fake name, but they can do an IP trace and figure out if it is the same person using a different name each time.  Think about it.

Another key point they touched on at the event was to make sure you drive traffic to your site using Twitter and Facebook.  Commenting on other blogs is also another way to get people to your blog.  Networking at events is a good way to get people to your blog as well.  Keep a business card with your name, email, Twitter handle and blog address on it and give it to people you meet.  It can be a valuable tool, not only for driving people to your blog, but also for making a possible future business or personal contact.

I would like to thank Michael Huber and the Times Union for hosting this event last night.  I feel that  it was very informative, as well an excellent networking event.  While I was there, I met a few new people and some people I knew from Twitter, but hadn’t met in person yet.  There are a few that were there that I didn’t get to meet and wish I had.  Here are a few people that I met and their name and the name of the blog they write;

Please be sure to check out their blogs and leave them some comments.  There are some really great blogs on the Times Union web site.  Before I wrap this up, I wanted to ask you a question.  If you were to start a blog, what would you write about?  If you do have a blog, what is it about?

*Edit –  I wanted to add that we got to spend some time with Kevin Marshall last night.  Not only is he extremely straightforward and blunt, he is also a writer, actor and self-proclaimed ‘sex symbol’ in the Albany area.  I have also heard that he is the Lt. Governor.  I can neither confirm nor deny that last statement.

**My Twitter handle is @tcrpmg***