The Tale of Two Meetups

With the launch of my product Dashter, I wanted to share a little bit about how the company / product / solution came to be. One part of that story is how my attendance and participation in two great Meetup groups here in Orange County helped spark, nurture, and evolve the product & the business – and ultimately myself.

#OCWP

About a year ago I started attending a group that I’d found on Meetup.com called Orange County WordPress (OCWP). I’d done numerous WordPress sites for myself and my clients in the past, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to attend and learn more about the platform beyond what I could gather off the web. I also suffered from what so many small business owners can attest to – which is when you’re running a small business you crave interacting with people. So I figured what the hell – I’d show up on a Monday night and see what it was all about.

Meetups – just like any new networking event – are always a little nerve-wracking. I walked in alone and didn’t know anyone there. The space at the old Zeek offices were cramped like you wouldn’t believe – there were 40 people fitting in to a room that was probably intended to hold 15 people comfortably. Lots of folks knew each other already, were sharing inside jokes, asking about friends & family, etc. It took a little while to get my bearings, but overall I could tell instantly I was in a good space with people I could definitely get along with. Continue reading The Tale of Two Meetups

Social Media Mastermind OC 10-22

This post was generated by Dashter… So it’s a Saturday morning and it’s time for some Social Media Masterminding here in Orange County!

Tips for College Kids about Social Media

Amanda WernickAmanda Wernick – @FUNomenalMe
in college? Be sure to keep up with your privacy settings. There is no privacy, only the illusion of it. #smmoc

Amanda has a really clear phrase here that I love, in that there is only the illusion of privacy. Companies like Google keep massive databases, and they’re public companies – they could decide tomorrow to sell off their database if it served their shareholders’ best interests. Privacy online is a virtual illusion.

Mitch DevineMitch Devine – @DevineLines
Social media advice to college kids: what goes on the Internet, stays on the Internet. It never dies. #SMMOC

It really doesn’t. Here’s something to think about: If you use 3rd-party apps on your social profile, those apps might be storing your profile data on their servers. Your data could be in a thousand different places – even if you delete your profile from the original website, it might be living somewhere else. The cost of hosting data is so low, there’s virtually no reason that it will ever get deleted.

What’s your Personal Brand?

Matthew GallizziMatthew Gallizzi – @mgallizzi
@DevineLines College kids could use a course on “branding”. They need to know employers will be researching them. #smmoc

Definitely agree with Matthew – personal identity and “branding” is more important today than ever before. There’s a part of me, though, that pities kids growing up in today’s marketplace. The act of “reinvention” is so valuable, but with online profiles and never-dying data, it becomes a lot more difficult. I think employers will have to adapt their understanding of hiring: Comparing two profiles, you will discover one with “bad” history and one with “no” history.

Candice CendañaCandice Cendaña – @CandiceCendana
RT @DarinRMcClure: #smmoc college kids your credit score is more important than your GPA. via @FUNomenalMe

Definitely think this is true – that credit score / tracking is for LIFE! You can always re-take a class, but your credit score is a reflection of your trustworthiness in the marketplace. Your next employer will care, your next date will probably care, and everything you attempt in terms of finance will be affected by this number. Good luck trying to get a home mortgage with an A- in economics!

SEO – Search Engine Optimization, it’s social, right?

Mitch DevineMitch Devine – @DevineLines
Approaches to SEO: you can optimize first, or you can focus on putting out great content and the #SEO will follow. #SMMOC

I think the folks with a strong SEO background would say the genius of a strong optimization strategy would be to start with a plan of action (know what you’re trying to optimize), write great content, and then continuously re-optimize. It’s a nonstop process.

Janet WhiteJanet White – @iSocialJanet
#smmoc SEO means
“How amped is your Google Juice?” #smmoc #google juice

Haha that sounds much worse than it is.

And a final thought… On Facebook – you’re not the consumer, You’re the Product.

Amanda WernickAmanda Wernick – @FUNomenalMe
If you pay nothing for something, YOU are the product #smmoc

No such thing as a free lunch – still true on social media & the internet – perhaps now more than ever.

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Think that makes for a great Saturday morning… Great to see everyone! Looking forward to seeing some of these friendly social faces at Monday evening’s Orange County WordPress meetup!

 

SMMOC in the Summer! 8-27 Roundup

Finally managed to find the time to get back to another SMMOC meetup. It may be hot outside and windy on the East Coast, but at the Lab it’s social media masterminding.

Oscar GonzalezOscar Gonzalez – @notagrouch
.@stabitha just explained how the FB sponsored stories. Pretty cool. Similar to sponsored Tweets on Twitter. #SMMOC

Started the morning off here at SMMOC with a quick summary of Facebook’s -other- ad offering; sponsored stories.

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Continue reading SMMOC in the Summer! 8-27 Roundup

Google Plus is …

I was going to write a pithy title for the article, and to kick it off I wrote “Google Plus is” and sat for a moment to let my brain figure out what was next. Turns out, it’s exactly what I wanted to say.

In case you were on a non-wifi airplane for the last 48 hours, yes, Google has a social network. It’s called Google+, which I think says a lot.

Google Plus is an all out effort. This ain’t Orkut. This ain’t Wave. This is GOOGLE with a freaking ‘+’ sign next to it. They’re aligning this effort at their core brand. If they botch this up, it’ll be a lot more difficult to admit failure and walk away.

Google Plus is missing the “Beta” tag. I’m just saying, I think my gMail account still comes with a Beta tag. Those guys love that tag. From a design perspective, maybe they’ve given up on labeling things as “Beta” and have just finally gotten enough people to believe the mantra: A Google product is never, ever finished. Continue reading Google Plus is …

SMMOC Round-Up June 25

Starting off a great day here at Social Media Mastermind of Orange County – let’s see what good stuff comes up today! Get the most out of it today – SMMOC goes dark next week for the 4th of July holiday weekend.

Cindy RonzoniCindy Ronzoni – @cindyronzoni
Thank you so much @ksablan for all your help putting together #ocregister #socialmediaday #smmoc. Greatly appreciate your efforts.

Kevin’s done a great job organizing & collaborating with Bob to put together a “backchannel” for the Social Media Day on June 30.

Kirsten WrightKirsten Wright – @kirstenwright
The info from Allfacebook.com is incredible #smmoc

After the SM Day talk, the conversation moved towards things like FullyFollow.me, AllFacebook.com, and helpful services to interact & learn.

Got a great thread of a discussion happening around the nature of profit in social media. Who’s making money (profit) using social media?
Continue reading SMMOC Round-Up June 25

SMMOC Roundup – June 18

Starting off another Saturday morning here at SMMOC (the Social Media Mastermind of Orange County).

Dave ColeDave Cole – @HeyDaveCole
Surviving the #smmoc internet blackout… Thank you iPhone tethering!

Started the day off without internet! Might make the day a little wild around here.

Jim WaleryJim Walery – @jwalery
Talking page title tag best practices at #smmoc. Tough 1st topic.

Jim called it – kicking off SMMOC with a pretty good technical topic. Some good ideas, including adoption of ScribeSEO service.

Lisa McClureLisa McClure – @LisaMcClure
Nice title tag template “industry, geography, specialty” also “recent relevant and local” #smmoc

Good suggestions for putting together title tags – make it count. I’d probably suggest “human” as another extension of these ideas. Make your web pages human friendly. Continue reading SMMOC Roundup – June 18

Groups I Participate In

It’s great to participate in forward-thinking groups. Here’s a few in Orange County that I participate in. I’m planning on jumping in to more detail and updating this list in the future, but for starters, here’s how I roll:

  • SMMOC – Social Media Mastermind of Orange County (Meetup Group)
  • OCTANe – Technology & Innovation investment accelerator
  • WordPress Orange County –