Archive for October, 2009

Shame on YOU Social Media

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

After I wrote this post for my Daily Rant Blog, I figured it may belong here too.  So I am posting it in two blogs, because it is important.

Over the past few months I have heard some pretty crazy stuff. I have had people get frustrated, sound fearful and make bizarre claims about social media, as if it is the demise of the universe as we know it.

The universe?
No.

Traditional Media?
Maybe… talk to me in 10 years, maybe sooner.

Here are a few random comments and I will keep it to 3:

  1. Social Media is “narcissistic.”
  2. “I don’t want to become like people I know and be on Facebook all day.”
  3. “Twitter freaks me out, I am afraid of it.”

Social Media can help you attain your goals:

  1. Help YOU navigate the vast expanse of information on the internet that increases ten fold every day.
  2. Help YOU find people that think like you and share with them – most of them you may never meet.
  3. Help YOU get your own message out in your voice and on your terms – most often for the cost of little of your time.

Does any of this sound so bad?

Social Media is hardly the Anti-Christ, destroyer of all we know as reasonable today, but it may be the transformer or catalyst that moves us into a next level of how we receive and PARTICIPATE in delivering information.

Here are some other truths:

Social Media allows just about anybody to have an opinion, type it into a computer and let the world see it. Like it or not.

Traditionally,  we were SPOKEN TO, fed or preached to… a writer from our newspaper, a reporter from a TV or radio station, someone that told us the NEWS.

Only sometimes from their perspective, it was really opinion, based on the reporters “take on things.”   It’s amazing how many few GREAT, true journalists were in my life, but even they had to rely on information from others and had to translate it.

If you are my age, you have memories before the 24 hour news cycle of cable TV and pressures related to get stories to the listening public – sometimes before checking facts, making sure that the information is accurate.

What social media does is, it invites YOU to participate.  For example: Did you see a tornado and take a quick amateur video of it?  Did you go to an event that no traditional media reporters was able to attend, but you were there with your camera?

And how about your own business?
You know it best.
You know YOU best.

Social Media helps you control your message and support other marketing/advertising you may be doing, your website, your promotions, it answers the questions the customers ask “Why should I spend my ‘hard earned’ at your company, on your product?”  You get to ask what is important to your customer YOURSELF and answer those questions DIRECTLY and be in control.

It isn’t narcissistic, it is reality.  Yeah you get to “toot your own horn” and what is wrong with that?  If you don’t believe in yourself and what you do, then why bother? Your passion is hard to translate expecting others to do it for you in your way also takes time and energy – why not use that time and energy to make the tools of social media work for YOU!

“Where, Oh Where Has Our Maine Gone?”

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

Being from Maine and just like my parents before me, I have seen lots of “progress” while I have lived here.  In fact, I even moved north from the region I was born in, to get away from all that “progress.”  Whenever I go back to my mom’s house, I cannot wait to leave, I hardly know the place much less see many people I know! I am proud to be from Maine, proud of the way I talk and how I think.  It may not be the perfect place for everybody, but it is the perfect place for ME.

And as life gets more complicated,  I find that I long for traditions and things that are familiar to me. Because sometimes life isn’t so easy We have lots of humor and humorous people here.  My dad used to listen to Marshal Dodge of Bert and I albums and roared. My dad was also a friend of Judd Strunk – the folk singer that made the small towns of western Maine famous with a song called “Daisy a Day.” And like the true storyteller Judd Strunk was, this one is my favorite, “The Biggest Parakeets in Town”

Now with YouTube, podcasts, blogs and Facebook, we have all kinds of other ways to stay tuned to the old stories, accents and our old friends.

Here are a couple of some of the new kids on the block that I would like to share with you!  If you are a current Maine inhabitant or “Maine-iac”  (or a Mainer in Exile as I refer to my brother), there are some great resources that can link you to the minds of those doing great things to keep our heritage in tact!

Here is a quick funny tune for you…

Then there is Dickie Baker or Dickie Richards. He has a YouTube Channel.  He has a video cast he does called, “What’s f’Suppah?” My favorite one he does is showing us the recipe for Moxie Boomers.  Of course Moxie being a Maine beverage, he also has some other more random, fun videos, about Cutter Bug Dope and Port-A-Potties.  He is a gem, I don’t know him personally, a friend of mine posted one of his videos and tagged me on Facebook and instantly I was a Fan.

Then, the truly multi-media treasures I JUST learned about are Rose and Trout.  They have a website, blog and weekly podcasts that are just wonderful.  They tune up their downeast Maine accents and have a conversation similar the ones my brother and I used to listen to at Jack’s Trading Post in Farmington.  We used to hide in the back of the store and just love listening to the stories that were told.  Now we do the same at MC’s in Birch Harbor. My brother comes for a visit each year and every day he goes to “the beer store” and I get to do it nearly every weekend in the summer.  The locals  don’t think what they are talking about is funny, it is just their life and we love how they stitch the words and humor together!  It is the “realness” of it all that makes it extra special.  Check out Rose and Trout  – I promise you will not be sorry!

My friend Brett Slater of Slaters Garage just shot a commercial for Dick Stacey.  For all of you that know Dick Stacey’s Country Jamboree on Channel 7 out of Bangor about 20 odd years ago, this is just for you!  Here is a video Bret shot promoting the DVD for Dick Stacey’s Country Jamboree.  And of course, there is Jenny Shontelle with the “On the wings of a snow, white, dove…”  It is a bargain and you can order it now!  I know a few people that I will be stuffing their stockings with that gem of a gift!

Being proud of our heritage and having a sense of humor is something we are desperately trying to hang on to here in Maine, we have lots of folks “from away” that move here because they like it so much only to want to change it to be exactly like the places they left behind.  We like our dirt roads, our small towns without WalMarts, early frosts and our state flag with the motto of “DIRIGO” on it.  (Most of us even know what that Latin phrase means!)

So the next time someone teases you about your accent and asks if you are from Maine – just give them a jolly “YES-SAH” or a “WICKED” with a big smile and know you must be doing something right!