Blogger Tip: Have Topics in the Hopper

December 15, 2009 at 9:34 pm (blogging, Networking)

I was meeting with a connection last night and we talked a little bit about blogging. (OK, it was a 1:1 with a BNI member…for those of you who drank the BNI Kool Aid.) We were talking about my business development strategy, which includes blogging as a foundation for my social media strategy. She responded with “I don’t really have time to blog.” And I asked “Is it lack of time, or is it that when you do have time you don’t know what to write about?

When I sit down to write a blog, I access my “Writing” file, which is a file on my computer containing word documents in varying stages of refinement. Some documents are 8-10 word ideas. Some documents include a very rough and unrefined brain dump, complete with spelling errors and side notes to myself (i.e. This is obviously pre-press crap). I currently have 30+ word files in the hopper, just waiting for a day when I have time and am feeling creative.

I come up with ideas while networking, at conferences, out to dinner, in the car, in the shower…and I text an email to myself with the idea. Some topics were conceived after too much red wine and they don’t make much sense the next day, but others have promise and simply need wordsmithery.

This article was started over three months ago with the following submission: What to Write About, Writers Block, Read industry magazines or blogs and jot down ideas, Gleakers. Not real sure what I meant by “Gleakers,” although I do remember texting friends and family maybe a year ago asking if they knew a Gleaker and if they could have that Gleaker explain to me how to do it. I digress. Anyway, the remainder of this Blog was created today, and motivated by my conversation last night with my fellow-BNIer.

My tip is to keep a topic or subject matter file, either electronically, or hardcopy on torn paper in your wallet. I end up publishing a blog about once a month, which is far less than ideal, but it’s all I have “time” for at the moment. The more I publish the more confident and motivated I am to do so more regularly.

PS: I currently have a client who has outsourced the content development to a copywriter. We work together to come up with topics, tone and goals, and we ghost write on their behalf. Blogs are short, 300-500 words, and it’s not typically necessary to get into great and complicated detail. Contact me if you’d like to learn more about blogging and/or content development.

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My LinkedIn Success Perspective and Risks

December 10, 2009 at 6:09 pm (LinkedIn, Networking, social networking, Transmyt Marketing)


I have admitted to you that I am a LinkedIn addict. I see it more as an opportunity than a problem, though I encounter hesitant people regularly who ask: Why should I spend the time? How has it been successful?

The philosophy of networking, be it web-based or face-to-face, is to get out there in the world and make meaningful connections. And for a business developer like me, I need to convince my connections that I’m likable, reliable and that I offer a service of value.

LinkedIn is my own personal database or customer relationship manager (CRM). Just like any organization, I use ‘my database’ to manage my prospects, clients, and referral sources—though on a much more individualized level.

LinkedIn is ideal for professionals who want their personal reputation to impact business growth. It’s all about who I know, and who they know. Since you asked, as of today, I have 314 LI connections (and growing), and they provide access to a network of 2,604,400+ professionals. This is not including the LI Group members that I can contact directly.

I use LinkedIn to stay on my prospects’ radar, during the time when we’re not networking face-to-face.

  • When you use LinkedIn, I want you to come across people you want to connect with, and I want you to notice that you are separated by 2 degrees, ME. This increases my value.
  • I also what you to see that we share similar connections, and thus, I must be good people.
  • I want you to see my profile and recommendations and have confidence in my abilities and reliability.
  • I want you to notice that I’m attending credible events.
  • I want you to think that my status updates and blog posts are clever and that they provide value to you.
  • Finally, I want you to question your marketing strategy and think: “let me call JoAnne for advice.”

Wikipedia sources offer that “Interactive Marketing refers to the evolving trend in marketing whereby marketing has moved from a transaction-based effort to a conversation… interactive marketing is the ability to address the customer, remember what the customer says and address the customer again in a way that illustrates that we remember what the customer has told us.

LinkedIn helps me maintain my connections, get to know each of them better, facilitates conversations and helps me interact 1:1. It has become an invaluable tool in my career.

Please reply with your LinkedIn success perspective so I can share our stories with my hesitant friends.

NOTE: Who owns the LinkedIn profile, the company or the individual? That’s debatable; LinkedIn’s User Agreement states that the individual owns it and it’s nontransferable. Thus it’s important that your social media policy clearly outline parameters for LinkedIn business use; I also suggest that you develop a systematic procedure for transferring contacts made on behalf of the company to the company database. Please feel welcome to weigh in on this as well.

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