Social Media Webinar thru Educating For Success

If you look to the right of my blog you’ll see a section titled, “The things I’m doing, The places I’ll be”. Underneath is a list of events with dates. Some I’m organizing like Barcamp San Antonio and others like “Five Web 2.0 Tools” I’m simply an attendee. Either way these are events I believe in and if you are interested in the whole New Media, Social Networking, Podcamp/Barcamp thing you might want to consider taking a look.

Rhea Perry One of the things coming up this week is a 3-part Social Media webinar series I’ve partnered up with my long-time mentor and friend Rhea Perry to teach.  Rhea is a homeschooling entrepreneurial mom who holds seminars/training courses all over the country teaching parents and their teenagers how to become financially free. She does these events through her company, Educating For Success. Due to the knowledge and training folks have received from these events there are quite a few Dads who have left Corporate America behind.

Educating For Success

I’ve been a member of her Entrepreneurs at Home Yahoo group since 2003, attended a few of her events both in person and virtually. She is an energetic dynamo who has a real passion for helping families gain control of their own financial destiny. For this and many other reasons, I am honored to introduce Social Media to the Entrepreneurs at Home group,

On  June 25th at 3pm CST the first of the 3-part series on Social Media Sites will begin. The second class will be on July 2nd and the last class on July 9th.  Each class will be held on a Wednesday afternoon, recorded and accessible at any time to course participants. If you’ve been wanting to discovery Social Media and wonder how or if you can utilize Social Networking for your business or group then this course is for you. Course participants will not only learn the background of Social Media but interact with one another on  the Social Networking sites. Since I’m a big believer that “doing” is important in the learning process, the first people we will interact with will be fellow Social Sites Class participants.

Since I’m a fan, I highly recommend taking the time to get to know Rhea Perry and discover for yourself the amazing things she is doing to encourage entrepreneurial families. Head on over to the Educating For Sucess site and do take a peak at her blog. She calls her posts “Rheavings” and I think after you’ve read a post or three you’ll understand why ;-D

Live Online Audio Interviews

I struggled a bit with the title of this post. I started to put “Online Radio Shows”, but then thought better of it. I mean, if it’s not actually on the radio is it still a radio show? So then I started to put “Podcast Interview”, but it’s more than that, too.

Since it is going to be live and folks will be able to call in to ask questions that brings it back to being more like a Live Radio Show. So, I opted for “Live Online Audio Interviews”. Sounds kind of generic, but it does seem to be more of an all-encompassing term. I’m curious what your thoughts are on the subject. Am I reading too much into the terminology?

So what does this have to do with anything?

Well, I’m going to be interviewed on two live audio shows this week in anticipation of an online class I’m teach at the end of this month Social Media for Entrepreneurs.   As someone who is an entrepreneur and active in social media, I find business owners often jump into social networking ill-prepared.  Which negates any personal and professional benefits which are possible in the social networking arena.

This is a topic I feel so strongly about that I partnered with Rhea Perry of Educating for Success to teach a 3 week online course. This class is meant to help entrepreneurs, small business owners and organizations navigate the nuances of Social Media.

I’ll be talking about this in more detail tonight.  Join me at 7:00p.m. CST when I speak with Shaine Mata on BlogTalkRadio (<–There goes that radio thing again ;-)  Shaine is a Social Media dynamo in the Rio Grande Valley. Feel free to call in with your questions at (646) 716-8227.

On Thursday, June 19th at 2:00p.m, I’ll be chatting with Leslie aka Springanew on her Homeschooling Open Chat show. Leslie is an entrepreneurial homeschooling mom who does a daily show on TalkShoe. Participation is welcome (724) 444-7444 Call ID: 21854

As you know, I’ve never been one who is at a loss for word. So I’m looking forward to chatting with both Shaine and Leslie about Social Media. Log in and join the fun!

Startup Weekend San Antonio

Startup Weekend San AntonioOn May 16-18th 40 people gathered together to create 3 companies from scratch. It’s a new phenomenon that is sweeping the nation: Startup Weekend. It was created by Andrew Hyde in Boulder Colorado with events held all over the country and Canada.

I knew some of the folks who had thrown Startup Weekend Houston in September 2007 and heard more details about the experience from Erica O’Grady at Barcamp San Marcos in October 2007. I immediately thought it would be a great concept to bring to San Antonio.

I started discussing this with my network of podcasters, entrepreneurs and social media folk to gage the level of interest. Todd O’Neill, Organizer of Co-Working LaTaza, suggested the person I needed to connect with was Dean McCall of Ideagin. Todd introduced us on Twitter, we met in person at First Friday Co-Working at Firecat Studio and Dean jumped aboard. Since it takes a team to make first-time events like these happen, Dean knew that Celeste Diaz Ferraro was the perfect person to round out the Startup Weekend San Antonio Organizers.

Erica O’Grady, of Peanut Butter Media, was Startup Weekend’s Representative and helped us kick off the amazing 2 1/2 days of fun. She was phenomenal! Having been at the Andrew Hyde’s first ever Startup Weekend in April 2007, attended four other weekends including organizing the Houston event she was the perfect person to offer her soft guidance throughout the weekend.

Twenty-one ideas were pitched and by the end of Friday night it was narrowed down to three:
iDre.am: A dream interpretation site
ForceXchange: an auction and community site for folks in the security forces from border patrol to military
RentEscapes: a second home/vacation home community site.

By day two, with company names chosen and domain names purchased the programmers were busy creating the architecture for the sites. Those not programming busied themselves with logos, business plans, marketing plans, video scripting, social media strategies etc…

The San Antonio Technology Center
was abuzz with all the planning but there was time to wind down with afternoon chair massages and evening musical entertainment by Matt Barker.

On Sunday morning although folks were sleep deprived they were still energetic and ready to see all three companies launched. Philip Wheat of Microsoft stopped by on Sunday afternoon to give away goodies from Halo 3 Xbox games to Vista Ultimate software. By the time it was all said and done two out of the three companies had live sites: iDre.am and ForceXchange RentEscapes has plans to launch within 30 days, are staying in touch with one another and have had subsequent meetings since Startup Weekend San Antonio.

Overall, I would say my personal experience with Startup Weekend was a complete success. I met some of the most innovative, entrepreneurial and tech savvy folks in San Antonio. Not to say there were only San Antonians at Startup Weekend. There were folks from the Rio Grand Valley, Austin, Houston and Raleigh, NC. I’ve made some fast friends that I will stay connected to via Twitter and Skype.

Where do we go from here? All three teams are moving forward with their respective projects. I’ll keep you updated as things progress. As for Startup Weekend San Antonio, we’re fielding requests from folks who were unable to attend but caught the UStream of the fun. I’ll be meeting with Dean and Celeste later this week to recap the event and discuss when to hold the next event.

PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos – May 3, 2008

Podcamp San Antonio: Numero Dos

In case you were wondering where I’ve been, the title should explain all. PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos (that’s 2.0 for the non-Spanish speakers) is happening on Saturday, May 3rd at the El Tropicano Hotel from 9am-5pm.

We had a great time organizing it and had the opportunity to create a wacky but fun 4-part video promo. We follow the Podcast Pickle aka The Pickleman throughout San Antonio while he searches for PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos. Luckily he meets lots of friendly folks, sees the sights and has an all around good time.
Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Want to learn about the New Media and Social Networking scene? Have a topic you would like to share? Enjoy the mental grow process? Or just want to hang around folks who are as excited about Podcasting, Blogging, Video Blogging and Social Media as you are?

Then come on down to PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos to participate in the Learn, Share, Grow that is PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos

Is Your Account For Sale? Andrew Baron’s Twitter Account On eBay

For Sale Sign

Is selling your social network community account like selling a car, a house or a business? Can it be a simple transaction for some cold hard cash? Christopher Penn has a post giving the example of credit bureaus selling a list of names in their database to lend support to the idea of selling a large community account database. Is the credit bureaus selling lists of names any different than what Andrew Baron has done by posting his Twitter account for sale on eBay?

I say yes.

Yes, because of the intimate nature of a social network community like Twitter. Of course I could just unfollow and block him (or whoever) from following me. There is a bigger issue involved in this action. Trust. I trust the folks I’ve chosen to follow with trivial and sometimes not so trivial aspects to my life. On a daily basis we communicate bits and pieces of our lives. Now I have to wonder if the person I developed a relationship within a community will still be the same person later.

It is true that Andrew could have sold his account without informing anyone beforehand. Had he done so the new owner of the account could have wielded considerable influence. Recipients of the tweets would be none the wiser to the change in ownership. I do applaud his choice to be transparent, including the community in the sale. In a sense allowing us to be part of the process through the conversations, comments and tweets during the auction.

At the same time I am not crazy about the place this takes us the social networking community. We all know there are spammers who have discovered sites like Twitter. They’re the ones who are talking at us and not with us. Following 3000+ people with only have a few hundred following back. You can spot them a mile away because their tweets have links in every single one of their posts. So database mining, linking, selling isn’t new to Twitter. What is new is having someone with “community cred” put a For Sale By Owner sign on their personal social networking community account.

Other than trust, another thing that comes to mind is the selling of a community when it is tied so closely to your personal brand. A business brand is one thing. If you sold your business then it would stand to reason that all properties (real or virtual) would be transferred to the new owner. So if you sell your Twitter account what about your other community accounts? What about Pownce, Plaxo, LinkedIn or Facebook accounts? Are those also for sale in a separate auction?

What if the highest bidder is an entity that promotes things that are the polar opposite to your own beliefs. Say you are a “I’d rather go naked than wear fur” person and the new owner is a “Baby seals make the best fur coats” person. Do you want that tied to your personal brand?

My own thoughts are that such an action diminishes the value of social network communities. The true power of these communities is their intimate and personal nature. The folks I’ve met through Twitter are folks with whom I have enjoyed interacting. I have developed a sense of who they are and they of me. I have had the pleasure of meeting quite a few of the folks from my Twitter community. The power of the social network community is further enhanced by these face-to-face meetings. As of yet, I have not been disappointed or surprised. Everyone has been exactly who they are on Twitter. Even though we are meeting for the first time, it’s like I’m meeting with an old friend. So now take that dynamic and put it up on the auction block for sale to the highest bidder. How exactly does that translate?

I understand that Andrew left a comment on Chris Brogan’s blog that the auction of his Twitter account on eBay is an experiment. So perhaps the sale of the account isn’t real but a gimmick or perhaps research material. The auction ends in 10 days. I am sure there will be many blog posts, articles and debate surrounding this long after the auction is complete. One thing for sure, Andrew Baron has certainly stirred things up.

PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos

Podcamp San Antonio

In one month, May 3rd to be exact PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos will be in full swing. The PodCamp festivities will begin on Friday, May 2nd. We’ll be hanging out on Red Gizmo’s patio inside the Blue Star Arts Complex. Come on down and enjoy the art, music, food plus some of Blue Star Brewery’s tasty brew. I’m really looking forward to reliving some of last years experience, but this time with an artsy vibe.

First Friday is one of the events we always make an effort to take friends and family when they visit San Antonio. Everyone always has a good time. For me this will be even better because I’ll get to combine several things I like into one fantastic night: Art, Brew, Fun and doing it all with my Podcasting Buds.

Although, we’re going to have a great time Friday night, the real fun starts on Saturday morning. We’ll kickoff PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos at 9:00am in the El Habana room at the El Tropicano Hotel. There were several places we could have chosen to be our PodCamp location, but one thing I like doing is showcasing and highlighting different aspects to the Alamo City. There is an amazing and rich culture in San Antonio. One that goes beyond the Riverwalk and the Alamo.

The El Tropicano Hotel is on the Northern end of the Riverwalk. Which is exactly where the Expansion Phase (ie. construction) is taking place. For a moment I wondered if we should hold PodCamp here, but that thought quickly disappeared once I walked into the hotel. 1960 Acapulco Retro describes it perfectly. You feel transported back in time as you walk around the lobby of the hotel. The decor looks right out of a movie set. The latin music in the background helps to bring the scene full circle. El Habana shares a wall with the tropical birds and iguanas in the hotel’s aviary. How cool is that? This hotel offers a one of a kind experience that’s for sure. If we wanted to showcase something unique about San Antonio, I knew we had found it El Tropicano. We’ll wrap up the session by 5:00pm and make our way down to relax along the Riverwalk. We had such a good time last year at the Naked Iguana we may just wind up there again.

For those not ready to end the PodCamp fun, we’ll meet at Cafe Latino to enjoy some tasty brew out on the patio. Gary Ard has done a fantastic job creating the perfect place to relax and enjoy a delicious cup of coffee. The patio comes complete with 3 Hookah Tents for folks wishing to partake in this Turkish custom. Jackie and I will record the Morning BrewCast LIVE!  It’s sure to be a good time for all.

I look forward to seeing everyone next month for PodCamp San Antonio: Numero Dos.

And the meme goes on: 5 Things You May Not Know

Thanks to fellow San Antonian and self-described Code Monkey, Vidya (@mapetite on Twitter), I’ve been tagged and charged with the task of sharing 5 things about myself you may not know…yet. Which is sort of a challenge for me at this point. I mean what don’t you know about me yet that I care to reveal?

Here goes:

1. Although I am a huge Lenny Kravitz fan, I consider the Beatles my all-time favorite band.The Beatles

2. A few of my all-time favorite classic films: Bringing Up Baby, It Happened One Night, Gone With The Wind, Splendor in the Grass Bringing Up Baby

3. My salsa is a friend and family favorite. My secret recipe is called Aunt Jenny’s Salsa.

4. Although I’m not very good at pool, I do have my own pool stick.

5. I enjoy the occasional romantic comedy in either paperback or film.

One more thing before I can cross this off my list is to name the folks I’ll tag: Todd O’Neill of Doing Media, Susan Price of Firecat Studio, Nathan Lott of Lott’s Thoughts, Leslie Baldwin of Springanew and Christina of This Girls Life. And with that, I can now cross this meme off my list of To-Do items.

Microblogging

Twitter
Jaiku Pownce

With all the cool ways we have to stay connected to one another it’s no wonder that the simple things seem to win out in the end. Blogging in and of itself requires a bit more thought and planning. Whereas microblogging is done quickly and on-the-fly. It suites my fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants style.

I’m able to express my thoughts, ask questions, get feedback and so much more. All in small bits. What’s even better is that the feedback is instantaneous. If I need an answer to something I know I can count on my friends in the Microblogging-sphere to come to my aid.

Having been an active member of Twitter for the past 9 months, I consider it an essential part of blogging. It has been well worth my time to participate in this small but daily bit of conversation. As a matter of fact, you might say it’s my preferred method of communicating.

The sense of closeness within in this tight knit community is never stronger than when our fellow microbloggers need help. Sickness and sorrow have moved my fellow microbloggers, Connie Reece & Dan Mosqueda, to create fundraising initiatives towards breast cancer research and unexpected funeral expenses. An amazing accomplishment for such a simple medium. I applaud the folks who take this simple but effective form of communication to a real and human level. That is what it means to be a part of the microblogging community.

Disagreements

We all have them. From as early as a toddler there were disagreements. It could have been when another toddler took a favorite toy away. You most certainly disagreed. Each of you felt differently about just whose toy that was and so an exchange of words happened. Granted it may not have been very articulate, probably more finger pointing and screaming than anything else. It was strictly an emotion based response but none the less it was a disagreement.

Fast forward to today. No longer a child prone to temper tantrums but an adult who has all of their life experience and rational to formulate a fair exchange. Disagreements are probably based around reasoning, facts, past history, current knowledge and not strictly emotion based. Of course there is always an element of emotion to a disagreement or else it would be called something else.

What happens when the temper tantrum prone child breaks out in the reasonable adult during a disagreement? It’s never pretty and always regrettable. Olive branches are extended, apologies are made and then forgiveness. While the moment can never be erased and relationships continue, there is a sadness to the whole exchange. It leaves a flat spot in an otherwise beautiful landscape.

Training for the San Antonio Rock-n-Roll Marathon: Nike+ Style

San Antonio Rock-n-Roll MarathonAs of yesterday a group of us have kicked off the start to our training for the San Antonio Rock-n-Roll Marathon. With November 2008 just a mere 10 months away, I for one am going to need every moment to train. Especially considering the fact that I haven not spent any serious time running since the last half-marathon in October of 2006. I have gotten gluttonous in my ways and it’s high time to shake off the excess (literally).

To spice things up there are six of us who are using a Nike+ Challenge for motivation. It started on January 2, 2008 and ends January 31, 2008. Each month the challenge will change. From Most Miles Run to Longest Time Run to First 100 Miles etc… The challenge this month? Most miles run within the month.

Our group is wide and varied even though our challenge members are all ladies . We live in 2 states and 3 cities. We have a full marathoner,three half-marathoners, a non-runner and someone who runs but has never participated in a marathon event before. Our ages range anywhere from the late 20’s to the mid 50’s. Our careers run the gamut from professional to dental to entrepreneurial to philanthropic.

Regardless of these differences, we are united in this common goal: To stand at the starting line on race day. We will not run the same pace. We will not finish at the same time. We will train individually. There will be times we will have the opportunity for a joint training session. But for the most part the next 10 months we spend training together will be online.

I hear the trash talk has already started.