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5 Ways Businesses Should Leverage Social Media

social mediaThe World Of Social Media is here to stay and that has major implications for the business sector, organizations and Corporate America.  There are over 200 million bloggers, over 500 million Facebook users, 50 million Twitter users and 34% of these folks post opinions about products and brands.  Theses shared opinions are a big deal, as 78% of consumers trust peer recommendations and only 14% trust advertisements.

The problem with social media advertising is that many companies don’t have a clear understanding of how to leverage social media for their business.  There are a growing number of businesses whose primary focus and business model is to help organizations leverage social media and they will even do all of the social media work for you.

Here are 5 Ways Businesses Should Leverage Social Media

Know Your Voice- This is the golden rule as it pertains to Social Media.  If you are speaking on behalf of John Q Organization, make sure that you speak from that voice.  Businesses tend to confuse or overlap the voice of their personal brand with their business brand.

If you are tweeting or posting Facebook updates for your Coffee Shop, you should not be tweeting about mowing your grass, unless of course you are mentioning that it’s time to have a nice cup of Joe afterwards.  An easy solution to make sure your business voice is the one speaking is to ask this question before posting — If my company could tweet or post, would they share this?

Be Social- The most important thing about social media is the social part and not the media.  If you look @Starbucks  and @Southwestair  Twitter streams, they are always interacting with customers and people.   Be Social, Be Accessible, Be Social, Be Relevant, Be Social, Be Authentic, Be Social, Be Real, Be Social, Be about Your Brand, Be Social, Be Entertaining, Be Social and did I mention BE SOCIAL!

The statistics that I shared in the beginning of this post about 78% of customers trust peer recommendations drives home the importance of being social.  I think that research could be extended to say that people are more likely to trust and promote brands they feel connected to.  Be Social!

Make A Name For Yourself- This is a two-part solution.  1.) Make sure that your Twitter and Facebook names are simple, easy to remember and relevant to your company.  2.) Make a name for your company by being active in the world of social media.  Have tweet-ups at your place, provide social-media only specials, have promotions that demand viral interaction and be creative.  @dealsplus  is the master of demanding online viral interaction.  It does not matter if your company is large, small, on-line, or has a physical location, you can Make A Name For Yourself. Familiarizing yourself with the 111 Twitter Tools will help you to become efficient at making a name for yourself.

Make Your Profile Work- Make sure your Twitter and Facebook profile represent your company.  If your business is a coffee shop be sure to have your logo as your profile pic. and not your personal glamour shot.  Check out my 6 Ways To Make Your Twitter Profile Work.

Have a Primary Social Media Application- The cool thing about the success of Twitter is that Facebook and Twitter have become kissing cousins.   There are many applications that automate the connection of the two platforms.  Although I encourage the multi-updates in both spaces, it is helpful to focus on one platform as your primary.  For me personally, my primary is Twitter, although every single tweet goes to my Facebook community.

It is great for a business to encourage their customers to connect with them on multiple Social Media medians; however having one or the other as a primary helps with clarity.  Imagine your company as bi-lingual.  The question is: Is your company’s native language Twitterese or Facebookese?  Answer that question and speak that language to your customers.

The bottom line is that Social Media can definitely be a benefit to every business and business owner.  Use It, Try It, Be It, Become A Fan Of It, Study It, Know It, Become Good At Leveraging It.  In the future, “It” Can Make or Break Your Company.

“It” Is Social Media!

What do you think?  What companies do a great job of leveraging Social Media?  Share your thoughts.

PROOF That Social Media Is Not A Fad!

Over the last year, I’ve shared several of these amazing Social Media Videos with you right here at The first video was The Social Media Revolution and the second was The ROI Of Social Media.   This post features the newest video that was released last week, entitled the Social Media Revolution 2.  The guys over at Socialnomics do an amazing job of telling the Social Media Story.  In my opinion this video is PROOF That Social Media is Not A Fad.

It will blow your mind, If it doesn’t… It Should!

Do you think Social Media is Just A Fad?  Share your thoughts on Social Media and this video.

Twitter In 3D

I remember several months back I was in Nashville hanging with my buddy @andykirk  and his wife.  While in Nashville, I had the opportunity to have lunch with the CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing Michael Hyatt.  Not only is he the CEO of Thomas Nelson, he is a Social Media enthusiast.  In my opinion he’s one of the best in the business as it relates to high-level leaders understanding the “how to” and the “importance of” leveraging social media for their organization.

During the course of our conversation we talked publishing, leadership and all things social media.  As we were talking we both agreed on the implications of Twitter and how it’s changed the view of people.  By changing the view of people, I’m referring to the fact that Twitter let’s you view people in 3D.  Grab your 3D Glasses and let me explain.

Twitter allows us to see people in the following 3 Dimensions:

1. Personal Dimension- The Personal Dimension is the dimension of Twitter where individuals share things about, life, family and is filled with many twitpics, yfrogs and LOL’s.  This is the dimension of Twitter where personality really pops out to the world of Twitter.  This dimension is most important and sets the tone for how the other two dimensions come into focus.

2. Professional Dimension- The Professional Dimension is the dimension that allows you to share expertise, experiences, thoughts, visions, trends, happenings… in your area of professionalism.  This is the dimension where the social media professional shares all things social media, the doctor shares all things medicine, the stay-at-home mom shares all things mommy, the pastor shares all things ministry and so on.  The personal and professional dimension will definitely have some overlap.

The professional dimension is the dimension where business twitter accounts should always remain.  It’s not pragmatic for business twitter accounts to share information from the personal dimension.  I other-words @starbucks  should not be tweeting about mowing the lawn, unless they are mowing the lawn and drinking a cup of Starbucks.  Starbucks should be tweeting about all things Starbucks Coffee and all things Starbucks Coffee Customers.  Unfortunately, some business twitter accounts get this one wrong all the time.

It’s important to understand that your followers may view your professional dimension a little broader than your professional role.  For instance Michael Hyatt is not just viewed as the CEO of Thomas Nelson, but also as a Social Media Expert, Blogger and Leadership Guru.  In this dimension I am viewed as a Pastor, Blogger, Social Media Guy, Leadership Guy etc.  If you want to know how the Twitter World views you, simply take a look at the categories of Twitter Lists that people have placed you in.

3. Thought Dimension- The Thought Dimension is the dimension deals with cognition.  Cognition–being the mental process of knowing, including aspects such as awareness, perception, thinking, reasoning, and judgment.  This is the dimension that releases what’s going on inside of your head.  This dimension is filled with random quotes, random thoughts, the sharing of information that you have read or opinions that you may have.

The Thought Dimension will have overlap with both the Personal Dimension and the Professional Dimension.  I gather the most useful information from the Though Dimension.  @RevRunWisdom  has mastered the thought dimension, he is one of the most retweeted individuals on Twitter and 100% of his posts originate from this dimension.  Again, I love to share and receive from this dimension.  My life philosophy is this: dream BIG. think BIGGER.

In order for an individual to have well-rounded and effective Twitter experience, they must be able to see Twitter In 3D.  All three dimensions must be present.  Personally I think a Twitter Profile should outline these three areas in order, for instance here is how my twitter profile reads: Husband, Father, Thought Leader, Campus Pastor, Speaker, Diversity… Al Gore invented the internet and I invented the #FistBump on Twitter!

Now You Can See, Twitter In 3D.

What Do You Think?  Share your thoughts on Twitter In 3D.

Think You Know The Future of Publishing, The iPad & The Next Generation… THINK AGAIN!

Do we have it all right or do we have it all wrong? Share your thoughts!

The Power Of The Social Media Tongue

thxFor those that Blog, Twitter & Facebook it’s always nice to receive e-mails, messages, tweets, comments etc.  I have shared a few random and positive e-mails below.  The e-mails are nice because people took some time to actually fill out a form, find your e-mail address and actually send it.    There is power in both the the written and spoken tongue.  The tongue has the power of life and death… Proverbs 18:21  How are you using that power? 18:21

In the world of social media most communication is written; however it’s interpreted as spoken loud and clear, well maybe loud, but not always clear.   I want to take a moment to speak very loud and very clear.  Thank you to all of my twitter followers, facebook friends and a BIG THANK YOU to the 3,128 blog subscribers to this blog.

Here are a few “Thank You” the e-mails/messages I have received: (Disclaimer- I omitted names and location to protect the innocent.)

  • Good Morning Scott, I wanted to send you a Thank You for all you do and the ways you have reached out to the world through Twitter and FaceBook. I am following you on twitter and have your updates sent to my phone. I am so encouraged when I see an update come from you. I look forward to your good morning hello’s/#FistBump’s, it’s a great way to start the day off on a positive note. Your blog posts allow me to break away from the daily grind and refocus on what’s important. Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts. I know they are doing the same for others as they are for me.  Have a great day.
  • Discovered you on Twitter. Luv BigIsTheNewSmall. You’re an inspiration as I just starting my business, website, blogging, etc. It is always great to connect with people who can add to my level of understanding, especially from a Christian perspective.
  • Just wanted to drop you a line and say I love your heart, your tweets, and your blog! Great website, by the way! I’m a pastor/web developer type and agree with your thoughts on social media being a GREAT tool for Kingdom work. Keep it up, brother! Blessings

As I’m reading back through these notes, I’m reminded that All Bloggers, Facebookers and Twitterers Should Do More Of This.  Just think of how much better the Social Media World and The World in general would be if we took the time to encourage people daily and simply say Thank You.   I personally try to send encouraging notes to individuals who inspire or challenge me in the world of Social Media; however I need to do more.  There is something subtly powerful about taking the time to simply say Thank You, There Is Power In The Social Media Tongue.

On a side-note:  I personally enjoy receiving the negative and critical words as well.  They generally go into the “I Don’t Care Folder!” 🙂

How Do You Say “Thank You” In Blogese, Twitterese & Facebookese?  Simply type these words, “Thank You!”

How do you say Thank You in Social Media?  Share your thoughts and experiences with the power of the Social Media Tongue.

You’re An Online Minister… Now Act Like One!

internet pastorGUEST BLOGGER: Dana Byers is a church online leader and co-founder of Blue Door Ministries, Inc.  She is passionate about reaching people who are far from God online.

So you think you’re not an online minister?  Think again.  It’s a simple fact: If you’re a committed follower of Jesus, you’re His representative wherever you go (including virtual locations).

I believe God is using the Internet as a primary means to lead millions of people to salvation through Jesus Christ before He returns.  For the past 2 years I’ve been living in Europe, partnering with church leaders, and speaking and writing about how to minister online effectively.  Our family made church online our home and uses it to launch face to face discipleship groups in our neighborhood, as a channel for hosting online prayer outreach missions, and as an evangelism tool to invite friends in our community who won’t cross a church’s doorstep to hear the Gospel message.  It’s amazing discussing each week’s message with people from various countries using webcams, Facebook, Twitter and  My hope is every believer in the world would embrace the life-changing opportunity to connect with others and share the Truth online.

Through observation and experience, I’ve composed a list of personal guidelines to follow to keep online ministry practices healthy and growing.  As you pour your life into representing Jesus in your online sphere of influence, here are some hard and fast rules:

  1. Get over yourself! Your time zone, local sports team and currency are no longer relevant when you’re interacting with people on the other side of the globe.
  2. Get out of your house! Praying with someone online doesn’t negate your need to know your neighbors.
  3. Get connected! Overlap offline and online interactions, because effective online ministers make friends in chat rooms and meet them face to face when possible.

How are you using your online influence to share The Gospel?

I Love This Blog!

I love this blogThe amazing thing about the world of blogging is that we have the opportunity to access the thoughts and expertise of some of the greatest minds in the world.  My Google Reader is full of amazing blogs with content ranging from comedy, how to get things done, ministry, tech, social media, politics and the list goes on and on.  I love to find a new blog and a new great read.

As I come across a new blog that I really, really like; I find myself saying “I Love This Blog!” I’m assuming that many of you do the same thing from time to time.  There are many great bloggers, who provide amazing content absolutely free to you and I.  If you find yourself saying “I Love This Blog!” show your love.  Below are 4 ways to Show Your Love.

  1. Subscribe A subscription via e-mail, newsletter or RSS.  This is the ultimate compliment as you are basically saying, “I want to check this bloggers content out on a regular basis.”
  2. Leave A Comment- Leaving a comment and engage in the conversation.  For those bloggers that allow comments, leaving a comment is always a nice way to say thank you and interact with the blogger at the same time.  It’s important to take into consideration The Twitter Effect On Blogging.
  3. Tell Others–  Let others know about the blog, via Twitter (posts or RT’s), other social media or in casual conversations.  If you know someone that could benefit from or would enjoy the content of some blogs that you’re reading, share that information.  Again, the easiest way is to share the blog information is to share it with your entire Social Media network, someone in your network will definitely appreciate the content.
  4. Tell The Blogger- Tell the blogger “I Love Your Blog” “I Love This Blog” “This Blog Is Tight” or a simple “Thank You!”  Show your love!

What do you think?  How do you show your love?  What blogs are you Lovin’ right now?

Is Twitter & Blogging Creating iPhony's?

big phonyThere is a lot of discussion about Twitter, Blogs and Social Media in general creating Illegitimate Experts, Gurus, Leaders… or iPhony’s. Lets’ look at the definition of Illegitimate– not in accordance with the principles of valid inference. By this definition Twitter, Blogs and social media may be creating illegitimate experts.  The beauty of the Internet and online community is the fact a person does not have to be “in accordance with a valid inference” to be successful.  No one is forced to follow or listen to anyone online, it’s a game of personal choice.

In the online world each individual is responsible for creating their own validation (whatever that means).  My personal opinion is this, “If a person has an audience, voice, knowledge, experience, personality, talent, information, the ability to influence and people are listening, They have been legitimized.”  If the above things are happening, the people are confirming that John Q. Twitterer or Suzy Q. Blogger aren’t iPhony’s.

There have been some very real and very legitimate online leaders that have risen out of the ranks of Twitter, Blogging and Social Media.  If people buy into what you are selling it’s only a matter of time before some degree of success and influence happens.

Traditional would-be experts are no longer the source of legitimization.  The market, the consumers, followers and the online community dictate whether or not a person is the “Real Deal.”  It doesn’t matter what I think or what you think, the only thing that matters is what the people think.  Let’s take a look at a relatively recent product that in my mind was not legitimate, The Snuggie.  Seriously a backwards robe is not a legitimate product.  The Snuggie has sold well over 4 million of their backwards robes; therefore the market and the people legitimized the product.  “Who am I and what do I know?”

Is Twitter & Blogging Creating iPhony’s?  Share your thoughts!

50 Ways Twitter Has Positively Impacted The World

Twitter is an amazing tool whose positive impact proliferates around the world.  There is a wide range of overall positive implications for Twitter and it all depends upon the experiences of each individual Twitter user.   The bottom line is that Twitter has made an extremely positive impact on the world in a very short amount of time.

How has Twitter positively impacted the world? In order to find out, I decided to go directly to the source.  I sent out the following tweet: How has Twitter positively impacted the world? First 50 @replies will be a blogpost. Ready, Set, Go!

The @replies  are as follows: 50 Ways Twitter Has Positively Impacted The World

  1. ScottWilliams It’s made the world smaller & more connected. You can quickly disseminate world-wide knowledge, prayers, info., The Gospel… Game Changer!
  2. janicegeorge It gave people the to not just be heard, but to hear from people they may have never otherwise had the chance
  3. dkrichards improved community & communications
  4. pastorcbrown …by allowing more healthy, kingdom focused relationships to form between national/international church leaders
  5. childsplayx2 It redefines the idea of “community.”
  6. janicegeorge It gave us a platform to instantly reach hundreds if not thousands. These relationships have the power to be life changing.
  7. StephenLBloom Opened discovery of so much amazing information I would NEVER have found without people’s tweeted links.
  8. TJList Twitter has opened doors, made introductions, and challenged paradigms.
  9. matthoag Ive gained wisdom from people i might not have met otherwise
  10. iamkrissy Twitter has positively impacted the world by allowing people from other countries to get to know each other better
  11. scottinnj Twitter has helped join a network of prayer warriors who are nuts for Jesus at @worldprayr.
  12. lorizimbardi A plea for help from our Care Ministry brings a quick response for those in need. Can’t imagine doing this ministry w/o it.
  13. Rachel_Shine We have entered a world where “RT”, “@replies“, & “followers” allow us to feel validated. or rather, provide a new avenue for validation.
  14. bradhuebert Twitter creates its own world. Whether time spent in that world impacts the physical world is up to us.
  15. soulricua It’s a way for people of different cultures to come together and learn. When someone is
  16. joshlipscomb Twitter helps to capture, share, then recall thoughts & events in my life that I would normally just be forgotten.
  17. LynnWashington Twitter has become a minute-by-minute source of news and entertainment
  18. CyndiAKADisneyq where else can you get out a prayer request to 1000 in just a few seconds?
  19. alronberg Twitter helped me get to USA to #nywc which impacted my passion for life and making a difference in the world!
  20. jasonrmoye given normal people a chance to talk to people that they would normally not be able to contact.
  21. nataliewitcher Oh man, the prayer chain that comes out of this sucker is unreal!
  22. AroundHarlem Twitter has given the voiceless a voice.
  23. blessedbriliant [only for those lucky enough to be retweeted or followed] RT @AroundHarlem: @ScottWilliams Twitter has given the voiceless a voice.
  24. MyWiredStyle Provided instant global connection in 140 characters or less and this connectivity provides relatability~
  25. adamherod It’s made great leaders more accessible and connection to like minded people easier.
  26. FLYYSINCE84 Great networking tool!
  27. kareepyeatt Twitter has created a community with people from all walks of life.
  28. digitaldetours I’ve met some amazing people that I may not have had the chance to otherwise. All thanks to #Twitter!!
  29. seancbowen Helped @ninethirtyone fulfill it’s mission of Helping people experience Jesus.
  30. Rachel_Shine It’s made me feel more connected to the community in which I live. As the commercial says,”Creating the fabric of our lives.”
  31. mkokc it’s created real friendships in former strangers. Love that didn’t exist before.
  32. PaulTurnerToo I think Twitter has become our mini diaries filled with mini thoughts that create stories and timelines
  33. breyeschow twitter has created an agile space where people are able to connect and discern the meaning of faith, community and the holy.
  34. livn4hm Connected individuals together for spiritual enrichment beyond the walls of the local church.
  35. blessedbriliant Twitter has truly made the 6 degrees of separation in real-time
  36. mikeell On Monday Twitter (In 6hrs.) raised 1 year of tuition for a 7th grade girl/mom in Guatemala coming out of an abusive home..
  37. ericcarroll Getting prayer needs out there & also giving people opps w/CEOs, etc. they wouldn’t have otherwise.
  38. cathilinch By connecting people in relationship who would not otherwise be connected.
  39. BrianVasil Twitter breaks major news faster than the biggest networks.
  40. mikeymo1741 It’s made the conversation global, not bound by distance or time zones.
  41. kevinbeers Fast & easy information sharing, real time updates & fund raising capabilities to propel “tribes” of people into movements
  42. baltimorec // allowed the “little” guy to connect with the “big” guy.
  43. billwolfe it creates an easy way to continue to pursue the Great Commission
  44. miller_schloss Twitter has taught us to express ourselves more succinctly.
  45. DaveIngland (FB) i just experienced the power of twitter uniting people to pray for my brother-in-law who had a heart attack. awesome!
  46. Monica Lewis (FB) The viral marketing capabilities are insane.
  47. Michelle Smith Humphress (FB) Twitter beat CNN with major breaking news– ie Michael Jackson’s death.
  48. Michelle Smith Humphress (FB) Twitter allowed the Iranians to speak their minds and communicate with the free world about their shady elections.
  49. Joe Donaldson (FB) It has made the world even smaller.
  50. You- In a few short minutes you can have an aggregate list of respondents from around the globe share feedback on any given topic. i.e. How has twitter positively impacted the world?

How has Twitter positively impacted the world?  Share your thoughts on any of the above responses or add to the list!

The ROI Of Social Media

This video will blow your mind…

  • If it doesn’t, It should.
  • If you’re not a believer in Social Media, You should be.
  • If your business or organization is not leveraging social media, That’s Stupid!

What do you think?

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