Brain Vibe

marketing muses to stay engaged

B2B Marketing Dilemma – It’s My Social Media Account!

Back in December I read an article regarding an employee of a British company that built up quite a following to promote his employer and then left.  The company sued, saying the account was their along with all the followers.  “Experts: Twitter account case may blaze new trails in social media law” CNN December 27, 2011

Personally, I’ve tried hard to keep my online presence separate from my employer (Trillium Software a Division of Harte-Hanks).  But, as we ramp up social media activity, there is pressure to blog, join LinkeIn discussions, tweet, and generally use our personal social media accounts to help promote the company.  The irony is that as the head of product marketing and programs it is my team, and yes me, that is encouraging this.  However, I’m a bit hesitant, and here is why.

My social media marketing manager is doing a lot of the promotion and monitoring for our campaign and social media bureau.  He uses his LinkedIn account primarily.  It brings up the challenge of separating personal goals and employer goals.  Remembering the article above, I suggested he create work identities that are specific to Trillium Software to avoid conflicts of interest and to help him maintain his personal brand.  Sounds easy enough.

Not so fast.

Twitter is fairly simple.  LinkedIn poses issues.  It seems he tried to set up a professional profile on LinkedIn and they shut it down.  I understand this reasoning and actually agree with it.  As I move around LinkedIn I am those truly trying to network have much more credibility in my mind than those just trying to sell me something.  Also, LinkedIn wants to ensure that they remain a network, not a marketing platform.  Their value is business relationships for jobs, career growth, and networking.  Promotion is secondary, even if lucrative.

  • So, what is a social media company representative to do?
  • Where do intellectual property right begin and end?
  • When will social media account management catch up with employer non-compete and IP trends?

There is a real disincentive to network as part of your job with the threat of legal action when you separate from your employer.  Even if the separation is amicable, why would an employee want to give up his/her account where they have built relationships and a network.  The lines are very blurred between personal and professional and right now, personal seems to be at a distinct dissadvantage.

Any suggestions on what you have done?


Filed under: b2b, personal brand, social media, social media marketing, , ,

Social Media Truth: You Are Who You Are

I frequently read, as I’m sure you have, all the blog posts on the various social media personalities.  In most cases they are how-to-not guides in interaction; a witty, snarky, and way to insightful magnifying glass on how we behave, and behave badly in our online world.  I’ve actually been a bit of a party to this in early posts of social media ettiquette, I mean it is so easy to, right?

It is, of course, our nature to read these personality descriptions and say, “No way.  That isn’t me.  Not even close.  I never do that.  And, even if I do I have very good reason to!”  Well, unfortunately, it is exactly you, me, them.  Even the best, the leaders in social media (you and they know who they are), are navel gazers, voyeurs, and self promoters.  At the end of the day, social media is a  bit creepy.  It is creating new personality disorders.  Feeling a bit like Sybil?

Rather than getting too serious about whether I fit a personality and if I am “doing it right”, I tend to take these lists for what they are, self deprecating humor.

Here is a list of those that I like:

There is really only one rule – there are no rules.  Bring your authentic self to the table.  It makes things so much more interesting.  If people don’t like it, they’ll ignore you.

What lists do you like?  Who are you?

Filed under: personal brand, social media

A Word on Communicating

You been building up your personal brand through your career experience and now through social media.  It’s time to take that on the road.  Are you ready?

Public Speaking Personal Brand

I’ve been listening to a lot of webinars, watching YouTube clips of seminars, and attending seminars of late.  Speakers and topics are across a wide range from highly technical to media gurus.  What never fails to surprise me is how very few people that speak publicly, can do it well.  

Today when personal branding is getting all the buzz and it is more important than ever to promote yourself, it isn’t enough to stay behind a blog, comment, a tweet, or online network.  You still have to get out there and speak whether it is in front of event attendees, a meeting, or a job interview.    You can be the smartest one in the room, you can have the best information, but if you can’t deliver it without boring your audience, who cares?

Like it or not, in public speaking, image matters.  Poor delivery ruins your credibility.

20 Ways to Improve your Public Speaking

  1. Know what your audience should walk away with
  2. Tell a story
  3. Powerpoint decks are not your note cards or speech, they are your props
  4. Talk to your audience, not at them
  5. For large groups, pick a few people to focus on
  6. Be passionate about your topic
  7. Include stories and humor
  8. Interact with audience by asking them questions
  9. Get out from behind the podium
  10. Don’t read your slides, this is not a bedtime story
  11. Inject personality into your speaking, ditch the monotone
  12. Speak up
  13. 75% presentation, 25% Q&A/discussion
  14. Know your audience, research who is attending
  15. It is about the topic, not the sales pitch
  16. Enjoy yourself, smile
  17. Wear comfortable, but appropriate, clothes and shoes
  18. Be concise
  19. Tell people something they don’t already know
  20. Be prepared for the questions, anticipate what will be asked

Filed under: b2b, communication, personal brand, , , , , , , , , , ,



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