Tag Archives: facebook

Social Media = Two Way Communication…

The bulk of my days consist of brainstorming ideas for clients on how they can use social media to engage their consumers. Those brainstorms then turn into proposals, some of which get passed through, while others fall by the wayside. Though it can be a pretty frustrating job, ideation without promise of creation, there’s a certain level of satisfaction that comes from having pretty candid conversations with clients about how to or in some cases how not to engage with social media. The one piece of advice that I can’t stress enough is – don’t half ass it – of course, put in a more gentler way. 

Consumers aren’t stupid. For years they’ve been bombarded with one size fits all messages that are pushed their way in traditional mediums, but today they know exactly how to tune them out. Better yet, they know how to get the ear of brands, which was unheard of quite a few years back. If you’re going to play in the “social media” world, whether you’re a major consumer brand or an indie musician, there needs to be a level of authenticity. 

Yes, at the end of the day, there are marketing objectives behind using social media tools, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be honest. Don’t just let your customers or fans (in the case of musicians) hear your voice or be privy to “exclusive” content – but be aware of the conversation going on around you or in most cases about you. It’s simply not enough to just read comments or blast out twitter messages to the masses. So what if you have a myspace page, facebook page, or even a YouTube channel. You may gain a few followers here or there, but how are you sustaining that following? 

By using social media but not engaging in two-way conversations with your followers you’re stating two things:

1) their opinions don’t matter

2) you’re jumping on the bandwagon.

Consumer brands, with the help of public relations and marketing professionals, are realizing that they can’t just play in the social media space just to be there. They realize it’s not all fun and games, that the online space can quickly become a very unsociable place. However, if done properly, they can reach consumers in ways never before possible and create unique user experiences that have powerful, long lasting effects. Same goes for musicians, especially indie musicians who are at a distinct advantage over major label artists since they are in complete control of their content and in essence their brand. So, are you using social media the way it was intended?


RT: Jimmy Eat World Gets Social

My buddy Luke Armour has written an amazing guest post at The Round Table about Jimmy Eat World integrating social media with their music to engage music fans. Here’s a taste…

A while ago I “became a fan” of Jimmy Eat World on Facebook, which, for many fan sites means absolutely nothing. But Jimmy Eat World actually uses it. The most recent updates focused on the 10th anniversary celebration of their classic album Clarity. For 10 one-time-only shows beginning February 23 in New York City and concluding March 7 in the band’s native Arizona, they played the album in its entirety. What a great way to point out to new fans that you have older stuff worth paying attention to. And the buzz was great, the shows sold out right quick.

Once I realized they were actually talking to me, the fan, it wasn’t long before I started paying attention to them elsewhere. I started following them on Twitter, which, again, for many Twitter accounts means absolutely nothing – except maybe knowing what Jim had for breakfast [yawn]. But this was entertaining, interesting and – as it turns out -informative. I saw this tweet one day:

catch @jimmyeatworld clarity rehearsal live on @ustream this thursday at 1:30 az time

…. be sure to read the rest of the post at The Round Table.

iPhone Apps: Gratuitous Geek Post…

Alright, so this blog post comes courtesy of many “geek” chats I’ve had with my buddy Michael Denton of Contributing Comments. More nights than I care to admit, Denton and I have glossed on about the pros and cons of various cell phones across carriers. We’ve duked it out over features, operating systems, and even the value of open-source, oh so geeky!

Now, recently (about 2 months ago) I purchased an iPhone 3G. Yup, I went for it. My original Black Jack aka 21 was giving me signs that it was time to move on. I wrestled with the thought of which device to purchase, but ultimately it came down to a Blackberry or an iPhone. Obviously, you can’t beat the BB when it comes to email functionality, but it was the applications of the iPhone that made the most sense. I’m loving my iPhone aka Elroy for the most part — though I miss the feel of an actual qwerty keypad. Since I chose the iPhone for the applications, figure I should call out some of my favs.

Shazam – a music discovery tool. Load the app, hold your iPhone to any radio, computer, car speaker and magically watch as Shazam tells you what’s currently playing. Never have that “damn, what’s this song called” moment ever again. Btw, this baby even works in fairly noises restaurants — we tested it at Caliente Loco during happy hour.

Facebook – A no brainer. I’ve been slightly addicted to FB as of late — mainly cause all my friends are (finally!) using it. Updating status messages, writing on walls, and especially the direct mobile upload feature makes it easy to let friends know what you’re up to.

NYTimes – My go-to source for news. Love checking the NYTimes app first thing in the morning while sitting on the train. Never been a fan of newspaper ink – the feel and smell of it – so now I can get all my news right on my phone. I know, the Ad dept at the times is cursing me right about now.

Around Me – Uses your location to tell you what’s around you… duh. From hotels to coffee shops to banks to hospitals – this app keeps you in the know. Oh, it even shows you where the closest Apple retail store is, just in case. It’s powered by Google, so you know it rocks (click the link above to see a video review of app).

Coffee Finder – Literally DLed this application as a joke. It uses your location to tell you the nearest Starbucks. So the joke is that I work in Manhattan so needless to say I never have a problem finding a Starbucks – but figure when I’m NOT in NYC, this little baby will come in handy. Like when Coma and I were in West Palm Beach, FL and couldn’t pay someone to tell us where a Starbucks was. Guess old people don’t dig Frappucinos or something.

WordPress – For blogging on the go — when it works. It’s sort of a sketchy app, not so impressed, but think it has so much potential. Let’s hope the folks at wordpress work the kinks out.

Vint B&W – this application lets you shoot black and white photos using your iPhone’s boring camera feature. B&W just another one of those simplistic features that the folks at Apple forgot to inclue in the iPhone. You know, kinda like ability to send/receive MMS, but let’s not go THERE!

Loopt – LBS app that let’s you find friends even strangers (creepy!!) in your vicinity. The guys at Loopt pitch it as “you’ll never have to eat alone again,” but really it’s one of those applications that can be used for stalking.

AIM – just cause you gotta have old school AIM for when a text messaging isn’t quick enough.

Twitterific – For the Twitter loves out there — like myself. Honestly, haven’t found a GREAT Twitter app to use, but this one is good enough (for now).
So there you have it – all the app’s I’m currently rocking on Elroy. What are your favorite iPhone apps?


(FYI, AT&T happens to be an FH client – but I’ve been a loyal AT&T customer way before I knew about FH)

Can’t Function – Forgot My Cell Phone…

I’m going a bit crazy today. I mean it started off like a normal day — I left the house and headed to a doctor’s appointment. Naturally, I was early (as usual) so took a seat and figured I might as well catch up on some work email. Reach in my bag for my cellie and feel around — nothings there. Panic mode sets in. Where the hell is my cell phone?!

The doctor calls me in the office, which is the only thing keeping me from a total meltdown at this point. We go through the usual routine, which seemed to take only minutes today. I pay and head for the train – catching the glimpse of a clock hanging outside my town’s post office. It’s only 8:30a – train is at 8:32.

Seriously contemplated walking the 1/2 mile back to my house to search for my cell phone, but then that would’ve made me ridiculously late for work. Reluctantly, I headed for the train and hoped for the best. The entire train ride was filled with thoughts of What Ifs. I mean, come on, I’m a neurotic NYer. Buildings have been know to blow up, collapse, trains break down, man-holes explode, debris and now the latest craze CRANES fall from the sky — lots can happen in a single day and here I am with no cell phone!

Tried to distract myself with my ipod (at least I remembered that!), but to no avail – everyone around me on the train was frantically typing away on their blackberrys and iphones — ugh! Managed to make it safely to GCT without incident and sprinted to my office — being unconnected for that long was obviously driving me insane. What’s the first thing I did when I got to my office? Logged into Facebook and put up a message about how I don’t have my cell so call my office line. Second thing? Called my mom to ask if she can head home during lunch to find my phone (like it being in the house will make me any less paranoid!?). Third? Call my cell VM to see if anyone left me an urgent message.

WHAT IS MY DEAL?! I’ve turned into a maniac when it comes to a damn cell phone. I’m obviously addicted to it. This is going to be the longest day — EVER!

Facebook In Real Life…

I was catching up on all my RSS feeds and saw this video on my friend and colleague, Luke Armour’s blog Observations of Public Relations. It’s what Facebook would be like in real life — not online. It’s pretty funny, but also kind of annoying — which is most likely how most of us feel about Facebook.

Ernie Halter: Promotion Using Social Media…

It’s damn well time Method Uncertain shows Ernie Halter some blog love (I’ve personally told him what you’re about to read at a show in NYC not too long ago). For those of you who don’t know who Ernie Halter is (shame on you!), he’s a gifted singer-songwriter from Los Angeles who also happens to be a walking case study for any aspiring musicians looking to grow their fan base. Ernie recognized the power of connectivity, collaboration, and community, but more importantly, he embraced it and put it to work for him.

Over the last year I’ve watched Ernie transition from having a standard website to a developing a full blown promotional assult strategy using social media sites. He has a profile on myspace. He has a profile and multiple fanclubs on Facebook. He’s developed a YouTube Channel, where you can not only SEE his live performances, but also request him to sing/play any song of your choosing. (Ernie’s “Cry Me A River”) . He also gives fans access to exclusive content like studio sessions and video blogs from the road.

He uses Flickr to share photos from performances, the studio, appearances, and just for fun. He encourages fans to submit their pictures of his performances too and posts them. His page also features an assortment of widgets and banner codes for his fans to take as they wish to promote him. He’s got links to purchase and stream his music, not to mention links to join his street team, mailing lists and opt-in to receive SMS/Text messages.

I know what you’re thinking, Ernie is just the pretty voice (and face) while his marketing team handles it all behind the scenes. We’ll, you’re wrong. Ernie is a self-proclaimed geek and really enjoys engaging and interacting with his fans either in person or online. He signs autographs, chats with fans pre and post shows, he’ll take photos of or with you. He’s that accessible, which is refreshing, but also inspiring. He’s building a dedicated fan base by using social media, but also through kindess, which brings loyalty.

Aspring musicians, take notes. He’s that good.

Be sure to check out Ernie at a city near you.