Fashion Week? Nope, It’s Social Media Week in Chicago!


If you’re in Chicago and anything social, you already know about Social Media Week. The parties have been wild (so we have heard) and the workshop events have been amazeballs. If you’ve been in your own bubble, no worries, I will fill you in with the deets.

Social Media Week Chicago is a franchise event series to spark the social media conversation. There are several mind-boogling workshops going on throughout the city that range in topic by industry. The industries are diverse from marketing and advertising to society and environment. The global mission of Social Media is to convey the changing world’s open connectivity.

I am so excited about the events; it feels like Fashion Week! The four events that I am attending are:

I’m Loving It: How McDonald’s Sets a New Social Media Standard. Hosted by Sprout Social, the event will address McDonald’s standard for customer engagement via social media. Speakers include CEO of Sprout Social, Justyn Howard,  Customer Experience and Insights for MCD, Julie Fuerst and External Communications Manager, Lainey Garcia.

Where: Willis Tower, 82nd Floor – 233 S. Wacker Drive Chicago, IL 60606

When: September 25, 2013 4 -5 pm


The Next Generation – Content Marketing and the PR Professional. Hosted by Cision, the SVP of Digital Content (and marketing guru), Heidi Sullivan will discuss trends in content marketing as well as walking attendees through content curation and amplification.

Where: Cision – 332 S. Michigan Avenue Chicago, IL 60604

When: September 26, 2013 10:30 -11:30 am

YWCA Powered: A Panel on Social Media Messaging and Women. Hosted By Roosevelt University, the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago presents a panel discussion on the impact of social media and women. CEO of the YWCA Metropolitan of Chicago, Dorris McWhorther, will moderate the discussion with panelist, CEO of New Chapter Entertainment, Candi Carter, Senior Community Manager of Leo Burnett, Lindsey Lewis and Social Media/ Analytics Instructor, Keidra Chaney.

Where: Roosevelt University, Wabash Tower – 425 S. Wabash Ave. Room 612 Chicago, IL 60604

When: September 26, 2013 3 – 4 pm


Connect with the Dream! Engaging Customers with Media in the Luxury Market. Hosted by Mercedes-Benz of Chicago speakers, Ashley Boho of Mercedes Benz and Fletcher Jones from Audi discuss social media case studies of luxury brands and the impact of content and engagement.

Where: Chicago Architecture Foundation – 224 S. Michigan Avenue Chicago, IL 60604

When: September 26, 2013 4 -5 pm

Don’t forget to tweet and stay-up-to-date with festivities by tweeting #SMWChicago

– Jehan Miller

How Bloggers Can Grow Each Others Readership

Blogging Essentials: Link Exchange Helps Boast Traffic for both bloggers as well as increases readership. It’s like “Help me, help you.”

Steve Farnsworth's Old Blog

Blog Blogging Tips Content Marketing Grow Readership B2B


If you are a blogger for a mid-sized company, or trying to build a B2B’s reputation, growing your readership is an ongoing objective. This is the same challenge that all business bloggers and individual bloggers struggle with alike.

I have always thought Twitter was a marvelous way to help grow your blog readership by helping others grow theirs. Bloggers supporting bloggers. That sounded like s stupid simple thing that any blogger would get behind. However, for whatever reason this wishful reciprocity only happens sporadically at best…until now.

Click to Tweet ★   How Bloggers Can Grow Each Others Readership  ★

A lot of requests from fellow bloggers to share their latest post flow into my DM and email boxes. I don’t mind when I know the requester well, or have had some meaningful exchange on social media, or have met in real life. Heck, I enjoy helping friends…

View original post 1,532 more words

Forget What They Taught You in Business School!

School Girl

The other day I did the unthinkable, I went through my college textbooks and notes. Tossing the Business Calculus, Accounting and Finance notes in the garbage (Spring Cleaning, lol), I stumbled upon Marketing 101 notes. On the first day of class we were taught the Marketing Mix and told to memorize product, place, promotion and price, and through out the quarter (or semester) we apply the four components to case studies and projects. The funniest thing is I have never applied the marketing mix in my own career, well not in the way that they taught us to.

The difference between school and the “Real World” is practice trumps theory. Not every marketing situation calls for the four P’s because not all companies have tangible offerings. If you do have tangible offerings, your manager is not going to wait for you to draw out a grid and input your company’s information. That’s super unrealistic.

Once you get into your marketing position your job becomes about finding innovative ways to increase revenue through your consumer and/ or end-user. Your job is to also stay knowledgeable! Everyday there are hundreds of new strategies and ideas that will help you with your role. I’m not saying completely abandon the practices that you learned in school, upgrade them.

For instance:

  1. Create a Hybrid  Marketing Plan. Instead of writing a 10 page marketing plan that will never be executed nor read, focus on creating an goal-oriented one-page marketing overview. This should include the budget, goals for each quarter, and tasks & actions. This is also a chance to illustrate how creative you can be. Twitter made us appreciate short 140 character sentences, apply the same method to your marketing plan.
  2. Learn AP Style. Rather you know it or not,  you are always writing. I personally think that all marketing students should take more than one Business Writing class because you are always writing some form of copy that is visible to general public. Most marketers do not know that knowing AP Style is a huge plus for employers.
  3. Create Goals, Challenges and Milestones. Marketing itself is an intangible job. If you do not work for a marketing-focused agency, other departments will always remind you that your job is “fluff”. Being “fluff” means that you should always create visible goals, challenges and milestones. If you are in charge of your social media account, make a goal of 50 new Followers on Twitter, 20 new Likes on Facebook, etc. Everything you do must be measurable and will help give you credibility if you are pitching a new idea to your manager or even getting a raise or promotion. Make a “Measurability Task List” starting from you marketing plan. Start with your quarterly goal, this is your milestone, what challenges can you implement to achieve this goal? What tasks will need to be completed in those three months to make the quarterly milestone successful? What tasks should be executed in the 4 weeks to make a successful monthly milestone? What tasks should be executed everyday to make a successful weekly milestone?
  4. An Editorial Calendar is the Most Awesome Tool in the World. Journalist, magazines, and  newspapers use editorial calendars.  You, your managers, readers and advertisers are able to anticipate within that year what your focus will be for each month. This helps craft your stories and help plan for press releases, events, etc. Think of it as a work “syllabus” and remember how helpful that tool was?
  5. Google Alerts are EVERYTHING! Do you need to know daily word on the business street, but you work so hard that you have no time to look on every blog or website for the information? I’ve been there. Google Alerts helped my life. From the latest Chicago networking event to the hottest gossip, I have a Google Alert for it all. Just check your email and you become an instant expert. Check it before work with commuting and you have instant “Water Cooler” talk. It also helps you to craft your writing if you are in social media or public relations.
  6. Become a “Low-Key” Type-A Personality. No one will blatantly tell that they expect  you to be a perfectionist, but when you are hired, this becomes the apparent elephant in the room. Being too detailed- never hurt anyone, honestly. If you need to train yourself to catch document errors and you are able to give valuable feedback.
  7. Learn from Your Mistakes. I wish I had listened to myself about this important lesson. You employer is not your teacher. They have no time to repeat themselves, nor harness your weakness. If someone points out your mistakes, don’t cry, don’t punish yourself. To have error is to be human, but listen and take notes. You are helping yourself by learning from your mistake and correcting it.

Do you have tips for “Forgetting What You Learned in Business School”? What tools helped you in your marketing position?


Facebook’s Ever-Changing Outcry, Why Intangible Products Should Not do Constant Upgrades…

How many of you are tired of the Facebook changes? I am…. well sort of. As a marketer, its innovative, ever-changing, new options I never thought I would WANT or NEED. As a user, WTF? We love Apple because it is always changing for the better and it is a tangible product that we NEED and WANT to change, but as many changes as we have undergone with Facebook, do we want or need changes? With my iPhone, I am always so excited when a new one comes out each year, because this means that I can get the old one at a cheaper price. But with Facebook, its a service that I use five billion times a day, I do not need to wake up and figure out how my Facebook works, without some heads up.

I am not as outraged as some of you, but I am not pleased. My “facebook-senses” felt the change coming, but it was really drastic, and literally overnight.

The reason why I feel that intangibles should not do constant upgrades is because it does nothing for the consumer. The process that people think is as follows:

  1. Lost Bragging Rights -“I cannot brag about it because everyone else has the same upgrades. Its no individuality, although Mark is trying to sell me individuality. “
  2. Need or Want Was Already Met. “Did I really need this? Did I really want this? Who was the user that needed or wanted this crap in the focus group? They are not me.  What perks do I actually get with these changes? Why are the pictures set up like that?”
  3. Bad Timing. “Didn’t we just have an upgrade a couple of months ago? I was just getting adjusted to the new outline. Where’s the manual for this? Couldn’t we have had a warning?”
  4. Changed Settings. “Crapola, didn’t I block that person? Now I have to go back and change my privacy changes.”
So what do you guys think? 

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