Texas Social Media Awards: I’ve Been Nominated!

In case you missed all the hubbub surrounding the Second Annual Texas Social Media Awards put on by the Austin-American Statesman, here is a breakdown:

• Nominations are open to any resident of Texas
• Nominees are listed and commenting is open for judges to consider
• Judges pick top 25
• Winners are announced at SXSW

There are many amazing social media mavens in the nomination list. The list is worth a long look. As the title to this post states, “I’ve been nominated!” <–Many thanks to the fine folks who put me in the running. I am honored to be included alongside folks I look up to as well as many of my friends.  The judges will announce the top 25 nominees by March 3rd and winners will be announced at the awards ceremony during SXSW on March 14th.

NaPodPoMo Day 1, 2009

Intro to National Podcast Post Month.

History of Year 1 and Year 2. Where we started and where we are now. Being bold and adventurous at every turn.

My 2009 focus will be to interview the podcasting folks who are brave enough to take on the NaPodPoMo Challenge.

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The Social Media Scrooge

ScroogeWe have all seen them or more likely we have all heard them. They are the folks who make a face whenever we talk about our Twitter friends. Roll their eyes when we share Facebook stories. They are also the folks who will tell you that real business doesn’t happen when you waste time on the social networks.

Are they wrong?

Yes and no.

Yes, if your employees are playing Mafia Wars instead of filling out that all important TPS report. No, if the connection they make from a Twitter post (tweet) gets them a phone or face-to-face appointment with a potential client.

Yet, how can someone be convinced of the merit of adding social media to their business? One way is to introduce case studies and offer examples of social media gone right. Zappos, Comcast and Dell spring to mind. Take a real world example that you personally have done to showcase the effectiveness of social media. Whether that was a form of communication, customer service or promotional tool. Another option is to have them attend industry specific events where the topic of social media is being addressed.

I am often asked to speak to groups about the practical use of social media. While I have shared how much I enjoy watching light bulbs go off during a session, I’ve never talked about what it’s like to watch a Social Media Scrooge “get it”.

They are typically successful business owners. They also know that if they keep hearing something over and over again, they should pay attention. They usually walk in with a determined look on their face. They may or may not chat with folks beforehand. They are there, but probably feel they could have spent their time more productively.

It is apparent to me that this person is there because they keep getting told they need to “do social media”. They have no idea what that means, not sure if it is relevant for their business and feel that overall it is a waste of time. If we go back to the previous Yes and No explanation above, they may or may not be right. However, if they do not take the time to at least have a cursory understanding of what social media is, how can they make a fair judgment? So, the Social Media Scrooge will attend an event to find out for themselves.

What I have found is that one of the best ways to cut through the jargon and buzz words that are inherent in social media is to relate everything back to traditional terms. For example, when I talk about new media podcasts and live online audio streaming I quickly compare it to traditional radio programs and talk shows. The Social Media Scrooge understands radio and will nod their head. When I tell them that one of the biggest differences between the two is that podcasts and online audio are instantly archived and available to an entire connected global audience. Their eyes widen in understanding just a bit.

The session continues and by the end there is that moment when the light bulb goes off.  The former Social Media Scrooge now has an understanding of the basics of what social media is and an idea of how it just might be a powerful part of their business.

If you know someone who is a Social Media Scrooge, consider sending them to spend some time with me at the Technology Connexus Hi-Tech Mixer on Thursday, September 10th from 5:30-8pm.

image by striatic

My own thoughts after the red carpet interviews

Being part of a red carpet event in San Antonio is no ordinary thing. However, it was an experience I hope to repeat. With the fast changing pace of today’s media, it looks like this could be a more common occurrence in the Alamo City.

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Post Red Carpet Interview with Kaye Cruz

An interview with Kaye Cruz of 24 Hour Entertainment as he was tearing down the broadcast set up for the red carpet interviews of Valentino: The Last Emperor.

I took the opportunity to chat with him to find out how everything came to pass. From concept to reality in 48 hours.

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Museum Reach San Antonio River Expansion Preview

smcsa-group-pic-river-previewsmcsa-river-expansion-tour-picutterli-image
smcsa-group-pic-river-previewSocial Media Club San Antonio was asked to participate in a sneak peek preview tour of the new Museum Reach Expansion phase of the River.

There was lots of picture taking, tweeting, facebooking, live streaming via Kyte and yes, even this audio post on Utterli. You can find all info using hash tag #sariver

A big thanks to Andi Narvaez of KGB Texas for helping to arrange this private tour in advance of the grand opening on Saturday, May 30th.

Group photo courtesy of FlickrClubSA http://www.flickr.com/…317537_com

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Getting to know you…

conker-acorn-boyWhile connecting online is a great thing, connecting in person is even better.

There will be plenty of opportunities over the next few months to get some face-to-face time with the folks who are making Social Media happen in San Antonio.  In addition to the monthly gatherings, there are several Camp, Startup and Workshop opportunities coming up. The best way to become involved with the community is to participate. Stay tuned or better yet, show up to any and all upcoming events.

You may ask yourself, “What are these face-to-face meeting opportunities?” Well, here are just a few of the events I’m involved in:
PodCamp San Antonio 3.0 May 16th El Tropicano Hotel 9am-5pm: This is the event that started the whole UnConference movement in San Antonio. Organized by the San Antonio Podcasting Group, this event covers: Blogging, Podcasting, Online Video, Virtual Worlds & Social Media. Registration is open now.

Startup Weekend San Antonio II May 29-31st If you’re interested in the Startup Scene, then this is the event for you. This 2 1/2 day event will take you from the concept on Friday night to a fully launched business on Sunday evening.  Registration opens on May 1st.

TweetCamp San Antonio July 18th If you love everything Twitter, but want to know more then this is the event for you. Or if you don’t know what Twitter is but keep hearing about it on the Tonight Show and CNN then get ready to get immersed in the Twitter-sphere! From terminology to third party apps to  mobile tweeting, you won’t want to miss a minute of this micro-blogging event. Registration is open now.

For those of you who are early birds and like to get your Social Media fix in with a hearty breakfast and a strong cup of Joe, then Social Media Breakfast is the event for you. Every third Wednesday of the month you’ll find topics ranging from Journalism and Social Media to Social Media 101. Registration is ongoing.

There is also the group that attracts the tech and early adopter crowd, Social Media Club San Antonio. We think it might have something to do with the fact that most of the tech-centric crowd can more closely relate to the night owl than they can to the early bird.  Meetings are every second Thursday of the month from 6:00-8:00pm. Feel free to join the community site where we’re able to connect in between monthly meetings.

There are also impromptu gatherings which allow fans of the micro-blogging service Twitter to congregate for some face-to-face networking. These events are called Tweetups and can be organized and attended by anyone who is either part of Twitter or at least Twiter-curious. The best way to find out more about these events is to stay tuned into the Twitter stream or at least have a friend who keeps track of such things.

This is by no means a comprehensive list of the events in town. I happen to know for a fact that every first Friday of the month, Susan Price hosts a First Friday Co-Working at Firecat Studio. This monthly event recently celebrated it’s one year anniversary. It has grown in popularity with each passing month. One reason is the highly interactive Brown Bag Lunch which is based around current points of interest in business, marketing and social media. There are additional Co-Working spaces around town such as T-14 in the San Antonio Technology Center as well as C4 to name a few. Find out more on the Co-Working San Antonio Blog.

These events are just the tip of the iceburg. Every day it seems I’m hearing about folks in the community coming up with new and innovative ways to connect. There has never been a better time to be involved. Jump in. The water is not only fine, your friends have already joined the fun.

Cheers!