Follow Me: How to Use Social Networks to Build Visibility & Drive Sales

Today I’ll be speaking on a panel at the 5th Annual Business Technology Conference, organized by the Small Business Development Center at Duquesne University. Our moderator will be Betsy Benson, Publisher and Vice President of Pittsburgh Magazine, and sharing the panel with me will be the delightful Victoria Dilliott, owner of Affogato Coffee Bar.

Our session title: “Follow Me: How to Use Social Networks to Build Visibility & Drive Sales.”

Follow Me: How to Use Social Networks to Build Visibility & Drive Sales



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My portion of the session will be an evolution of a session I gave at PodCamp Pittsburgh 5, “Blogging for Business.” I wanted to expand on the ideas I’d discussed at PodCamp, going beyond blogging to a more comprehensive social media communications strategy (and actually beyond social media to online communication as a general thing).

The slideshow includes lots of neat visuals from Flickr and elsewhere (all Creative Commons attributed), but there’s one particular visual I’d like to highlight: the “Killer Blog Strategy Mind-Map” diagram by Johnny Haydon. Communications — and social media/online communications in particular — act much like a loop system, and this diagram does a great job of visualizing the loops of causes and effects. A full diagram of the system would be much more complex, but sometimes the complete complexity obscures the core of what’s going on. If you’re trying to set out your plan to build communications (and community) online, this diagram is the place to start.

More notes to come after the presentation.

FOLLOW-UP:

Thanks to everyone who attended our session. What a fine discussion we had! Very big thanks to Victoria for sharing her story, and to Betsy for moderating the session.

Here is more information for some examples I mentioned during the talk:

Cooks Source controversy: Thorough summary write-up here, the main post by the blogger who first discovered her material had been reprinted without permission.

A sample of how Paper.li shows interesting content from a Twitter account and the users it follows: my Paper.li

Eat’n’Park using social media for last-minute promotions during the Stanley Cup playoffs: coverage in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (6/21/2009)