NaPodPoMo: National Podcast Post Month 2008

Last year, I was watching all the Twitter folks chat about NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and NaBloPoMo (National Blog Post Month) and thought, “Oh, that’s cool.” Then I saw videobloggers chatting about NaVloPoMo (National Vlog Post Month) and thought, “Hey, if the videobloggers can create video every day in the month of November, then I should be able to podcast, too.”

So I began my search for the podcasters who were participating in the November fun. Lo and behold, I discovered there was no such group. I was astounded. How could the writers, bloggers and vloggers be participating in the November daily postings but not the podcasters? It just seems crazy to think that as active and chatty as podcasters are that we didn’t have something to rally around.

So following the lead of NaNoWriMo, NaBloPoMo and NaVloPomo I created NaPodPoMo or National Podcast Post Month. Of course I did this on October 30, 2007 and NaPodPoMo was set to start on November 1, 2007. Not a lot of advance planning or opportunity to let folks know this even existed. I’ve always been a “fly-by-the-set-of-my-pants” kind of gal, but this was ridiculous even for me.

I set out to let my peers know what I was doing by making the announcement on Twitter and posting to the Podcasting YahooGroup. Those two simple steps launched NaPodPoMo and introduced me to a whole new group of podcasters I had never heard before. It seemed so daunting at first. These thoughts ran through my head, “A podcasts in a row for 30 whole days?! What was I thinking?”. After a while it was, “Hey, I’m halfway through this and I’m having a great time.” Finally, towards the end, “It’s almost over. I’m going to miss NaPodPoMo.”

When the 30 days were complete, I discovered alot about myself and met some amazing folks along the way. So, now when I think about this year’s NaPodPoMo, I think, “I can’t wait to get started!”

Cheers!

NaPodPoMo created badge created by Shawno

P.S. Below is a copy of the post I sent out to both the NaPodPoMo Alumni and the Podcasting YahooGroup.

______________________________________________________________________________________________

It’s that time of year again.

No, not Fall,

NaPodPoMo!

From November 1-30th we’ll be participating in the annual event which is the National Podcast Post Month.

The conversations are already happening on the NaPoPoMo Ning site so swing on by to add your voice. http://napodpomo.ning.com

The rules for the November 1-30th NaPodPoMo are simple:

•Post audio in any form every day

That’s it!

Feel free to be creative. You can post a traditional podcast or use Utterli, BlogTalkRadio, TalkShoe, etc… Some folks have even incorporated video into their posts.

There is no time limit. Got a one minute tip show or an hour long diatribe? As long as you post audio every day, it all counts.

The site is open for new registrations. Tell your friends and start training now for the podcast marathon that is NaPodPoMo.

http://napodpomo.ning.com

Remember, hydration is key ;-D

Cheers!

The Social Networking Short-Cut

Social Sites Social Networking is all the rage right now. There are those who have been a part of it in some form or fashion since it’s inception. There are others who are just hearing about it today. I became involved in Social Networking through podcasting in 2005. For me, it was about finding people who were as interested and passionate about podcasting as I was. It turned into more as the online relationships developed. Attending conference events like the New Media Expo and unconference events like Barcamp Austin led me to even more online social networks. It started off as a way to continue the conversation with folks I had met at events.

Over the years it has progressed to first meeting folks online and later meeting them in person at an event.  Even though I was meeting them for the first time, it felt as though I was visiting with an old friend. It was great! I was connecting with folks who had the same interests. It didn’t matter that they lived in Florida, Connecticut or even Canada. Our relationships were as real as any in my own town. More so, because we interacted with one another on a daily basis. I don’t do that with anyone in town with the exception of my family.

So by doing what came natural to me, chatting about stuff that interests me, it turns out I was Social Networking. Who knew?

Fast forward to 2008 and Social Networks are all the buzz. You can’t open a magazine without hearing about Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, YouTube and so many more. There is a lot of socializing going on in the Social Networks. So much so that Big Business has started to pay attention. Southwest Airlines, Comcast and Zappo’s are not only on the networks, they are actively participating in them daily. Ford just hired Scott Monty as their Social Media Strategist. Other companies are taking a serious look at Social Networking.

What does this mean for someone who wants to get involved but doesn’t know the first place to start? There are so many networks out there it can make your head spin. Which ones should you join and which ones should you avoid like the plague? Oh sure, there is always the old standard method of trial and terror. It does work. However, it can be time consuming and fraught with Social Media faux pas. If you are a business owner you may not have the time to learn the ropes. And there is a learning curve. There are folks who jump in with both feet and in their excitement proceed to get blocked or ignored.

While Social Networks can be beneficial for your business, organization or group, there is a right way and a wrong way to participate depending on the network. I highly recommend you take the time to learn about each network to see which one best suits your personality, interests and goals. In this case it’s okay to be a bit of a lurker. It’s one way to learn the nuances and ensure your acceptance into the community at large.

Another way to jump into the social media landscape is to participate in one of the unconference-style camp events which happen periodically around the country. They pack informative sessions on podcasting, videoblogging and social media all into one day long event. Here in San Antonio we have PodCamp San Antonio and the upcoming Barcamp San Antonio. Check for an event in your neck of the woods on the various camp wiki’s. Here is the Podcamp Wiki which shows future and past events.

And still another way would be to participate in a workshop or hands-on class. These are meant to be small and intimate affairs where the goal is to not just learn but to do. One of my favorite sayings is, “It’s all about the DOING”. It’s fine and dandy to have plans but if the actual DOING of the plans isn’t carried out then the plan was for naught. This could apply to just about anything but it certainly is applicable when it comes to Social Networking.

You could also hire a Social Media Consultant or Strategist to help you navigate the ever changing landscape that is Social Networking. This would be considered the most personalized method for introduction into the world of Social Networking. Each facet is highly customized to the particular organization. Having a guide to help you maneuver through the nuances of each particular site certainly makes participating less daunting.

Out of the four options I listed above, I consider the last two Social Networking Short-cuts. By hiring a Consultant or participating in a workshop you are able to shorten the learning curve considerably. The margin of error also goes down and your adoption rate goes up putting you on the fast track to Social Media Nirvana. Which is the perfect blend of real world and online world interaction with folks who are passionate about your business, brand, cause or even you.

What will it be like when you share coffee with folks all over the country over a Social Network like Twitter? How much of a boost will your career take once you engage with the LinkedIn community? Who will your dog connect with on Dogster?  Yes, even dogs and cats (Catster) are doing it. So, just how telling is it when dogs and cats have their own Social Network?

In case a workshop is more your style, I have partnered up with Connie Reece and Sheila Scarborough to conduct several workshops on Three Web 2.0 Tools. There are two in July. One is on Friday, July 18th in Austin, TX at the Hilton Garden Inn Northwest.  The other workshop will be held one week later on Friday, July 25th in San Antonio, TX at the San Antonio Technology Center. These workshops will be hands-on and highly interactive. Get ready to roll your sleeves up for an indepth introduction to three of the best ways to start your social media journey.

Regardless of the method chosen to engage in Social Networking, I do believe participation is the key to sucess. I hope you find Social Networking as informative and fun as I have.

Independence Day +1

Today is July 5th. One day past the official holiday in which we here in America use to celebrate our Independence. We became our own country and by doing so in control of our own destiny. I’ve titled this blog post Independence Day +1 to highlight the “Now what?” that inevitably follows such a declaration.

You’ve declared your independence from Corporate America or from a bad habit or maybe from a not so healthy relationship or yes even a British King named George. It took a lot of courage to take this big step. And let me tell you it is a big step. You agonized over it and finally got the gumption to put your foot down and declare your independence.

” I will be in control of my own destiny!”

“I will not do this anymore!”

“I am not going to be a part of a something that isn’t good for me!”

You did it! You feel great! Fantastic even. The world is your oyster. There is nothing that can stop you now. The sense of freedom is intoxicating. You feel powerful and in control of your life for the first time in you don’t even know how long.

“Now what?”

It’s the next day and you wake up still feeling good, but the future which looks so bright you’ve got to wear shades also looks uncertain. If you’ve left Corporate America to strike out on your own what do you do next? You realize that the money that is in your bank account is going to have to last until…….well…..um…..until you get a paying client.  How long will that be? What if you don’t get a client before your money runs out? What will you do? Images of you and your stuff being out in the street begins to flash before your eyes. Panic starts to set in.

“What have I done?!”

Sure your boss was a meany who stifled your career at every turn. Yeah, you haven’t been happy in that line of work for years and the thought of going to work every morning was like having to get a root canal every day. But at least you got a paycheck every two weeks. Rent, groceries, gas and the occasional vacation all from your miserable and life-draining job. Having a place to live, food to eat, gas for the car and especially vacations are wonderful things.

“What was I thinking?”

Before you go crawling back to your boss, take a moment to read the following words:

Don’t panic.

When things start to feel as though they are overwhelming and careening out of control. Stop yourself in mid-spin and tell yourself those words, “Don’t panic”. Take a deep breath in and hold it for a few seconds while thinking of your imagined doom and gloom scenario then release the worst case scenario thoughts with your breath. It may take more than one cleansing breath to do this, but once you’ve reached a state of calm it’s time to review. Recap not only the reasons you declared your independence but also what you plan to do with this new found freedom.

Write it down on a piece of paper. Make a list. I’ve always found it helpful to see things rather than just think of them.  Something about the actual words written down where I can see them gives me a sense of control over them and their meaning. I put them on that piece of paper. Before that they didn’t exist. I have the power to do that and so too I have the power to make these things become a reality.

Independence not only means freedom it also means responsibility. You are free to pursue your destiny but it is also your responsibility to make it happen. There is no Employee Handbook, HR Department or systems set up to guide you on your independent journey. It is your responsibility to create your own guidelines and best practices. Sounds a bit daunting doesn’t it? Once again, let me remind you, “Don’t panic”. Take an appreciative breath for the freedom you now have to lead your life as you see fit.

The Founding Fathers helped to create and shape an entire nation based on a list. By writing down that list they put into place the first steps of what was to became our Nation’s reality. Take the time to write your own Declaration of Independence. Frame it and refer back to it often. Who knows how important it may be in the future? Two hundred and thirty-two years later the original is still having an impact on the the world.

Remember, we have the power of creation within us. When you get to Independence Day +1, all it means is that now it’s time to create your destiny.

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.