3 Steps to Content Curation

Standard

Author: Alyse Garrard Reference: Hootsuite University: 3 Steps to Conent Curation

content_curation
Content Curation is process of collecting, organizing and displaying information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest. This is what we’ve been doing with Share-A-Thon 2014.  A while ago, I sat through a Hootsuite University lecuture titled “3 Steps to Content Curation” lead by Cameron Uganec (@CameronU), Hootsuite’s Director of Communications and Marketing.

Mr. Uganec’s 3 steps were very engaging, and I’ll share here we use these steps at Your SMARTOFFICE Soluiton to keep our social media content relevant and engaging.

1. Listening and Discovery of relevant, quality content.

Uganec suggested several methods of scouring the internet for content that appeals to your client base.  One of those methods was to follow the content associated with certain search terms.  Your SMARTOFFICE Solution follows hashtag feeds on entrepreneurship, salesmanship, and virtual offices.  We also subscribe to several email list concerning these topics.  That we pull out the most interesting of the stories and then share them with our audience.

2. Sharing and Publishing

The second step Uganec emphasized with content curation was sharing and publishing.  Here he went through a list of cautions and standards people should follow as they’re disseminating curate content.

1. Don’t just be a repeating station: Add contect to retweets, reblogs, and shares.

2. Make sure its handpicked content: Publish only the content relevant to your audience

3. Make sure content is aligned with your brand.  Don’t share something that weakens your brand’s message.

4. Have a Plan. Be intentional and regular in your sharing.  Don’t leave people hanging.

5. Don’t spray and pray.  Be mindful and aware of timing and frequency.

6.  Your Audience is made of Humans, not robots.  Share things that will be interesting to them and engage them.

3. Amplify

Uganec also shared that it is important to make amplification a part of your social media content curation.  Engage your audience with a question.  Remember that social media is in fact SOCIAL. member to be a part of the conversation that you start.

3 Ways to Protect Your Privacy when You don’t Use a Traditional Office

Standard

 

Author: Alyse Garrard; original source

PrivacyWhen you’re running a business that’s not conventionally housed,  your privacy and the privacy of your clientele is often put at risk.  Here, I’ll walk you through some of the ways home-based business owners, outside sales reps, and on-site service providers (people who don’t traditionally do business from an office; un-officers) have their privacy compromised and how using a virtual office protects against these privacy threats.

1. The STARBUCKS Eavesdropper

Rather than having clients meet at the home office or always relying on them to provide meeting space, the Starbucks (or Panera or Dunkin’ Donuts) meeting is a go-to for many resourceful un-officers.    After all, it’s generally quiet, has wi-fi, and is easy to find. Yet, while you’re having a one-on-one with your top account, there’s way-too-loud-headphones Joe and slurppy-coffee MaGee not three feet away.  While Joe and MaGee might not have prying ears,  they are a bit of a distraction.  You don’t notice quietly-reading-a-book Janice behind you.  Occasionally, Janice peers over her book and turns to her open laptop to jot down notes.  She just so happens to do this every time you or your client mentions sensitive information.  Quietly-reading-a-book Janice could be a competitor, who had had an earlier Starbucks meeting and was elated to see you and your client walk in.  But, the more likely case is that Janice is a criminal looking to steal more than your top account.

Let’s replay your Starbucks meeting; only this time, you’re at Your SMARTOFFICE Solution.  At SMARTOFFICE, we have an state-of-the-art piece of technology that you’ll never find  at the Bucks. “What is this ground-breaking innovation?” you ask.  Why, none other than a door! Rather than sitting in open air and sharing your space with Janice, Joe, and Magee, you have a private meeting room with a door that you can shut prying ears and eyes out of.  To top it all off, at SMARTOFFICE, the coffee’s free.

2. You are HERE.

Trade shows are a great opportunity to get exposure to hundreds of potential clients, and your booth is one of the most popular.  You spend all day in 1-2 minute conversations giving your elevator pitch and handing out marketing materials to every Joe, Janice, and Magee in the joint.  About midday you get stuck in conversation with Sleazy Sammy, and it’s obvious that Sammy is interested in more than just your services.  While your giving your elevator pitch for the hundredth time you notice that Sammy’s held your handshake way too long, and he’s standing a bit too close.  As you rap up your conversation, Sammy doesn’t acknowledge your services but asks you out on a date with a suggestive wink.  You politely decline and hold off on handing him your business card.  You move to the next trade show guest but notice that Sammy picks up a card from your booth.  What’s on your card?  Your home address and your cell phone number.  Sammy, now, knows just where to find you for a follow-up.

You’re probably thinking that all that can be solved by having a PO Box and a Google voice number.  Well, what does that do for all the  non-Sleazy Sammys you met.  They see PO Box and think, who am I really dealing with that doesn’t have a REAL address.  And, those Google voice numbers are good if you answer the phone every single time. But, what if you can’t get to it, the robot voice comes on and who likes dealing with those.

Same scenario with SMARTOFFICE:  You use 710 East Main Street and the remote receptionist number that comes with your virtual office package.  710 East Main St. with no box number or suite number gives the impression that that’s your building.  And, rather than your clientele getting the robot voice, they get a friendly and helpful receptionist.  And what of Sammy?  If he stops by 710 East Main, the receptionist will let him know that you’re only available by appointment.  So, he calls and the receptionist transfers him to you.  You might have to talk to him that first time, but you can then let the receptionist know to dodge calls from that particular number.  He’ll give up eventually.  None of the sketchier prospects will ever know exactly where to find you.

3.  Privacy for Productivity’s Sake

As an un-officer, you’re likely the only person in your business clients interface with.  You’re the one solely responsible for providing the services, answering questions, and troubleshooting when there’s a problem.  Most of your clients understand this and trust that you’re working to provide services quickly and efficiently.  But there’s that one who wants all of your attention all of the time day and night.  Let’s call her Needy Nancy.  Now, you don’t mind Needy Nancy as a client.  Her account’s pretty easy to service, and she always pays on time.  But, her constant calling on your cell or home phone (the only one for your business) gets in the way of you getting things done for your other clients. She’s even been bold enough to call after your business hours.  When you didn’t answer, she showed up at your house (the address on your business card).

The Needy Nancys of the world are a problem, but they need services just like the rest of your great clientele.  So what to do?  SMARTOFFICE to the rescue!   You remember that remote receptionist? She gets all of Needy Nancy’s calls now.  Generally, Nancy just wants a human to talk to and pass the time.  She calls with a question, the receptionist doesn’t try to answer it (which might cause a complication for you) she lets Nancy know that you’ll get the message to you and asks Nancy how her day is going.  After a brief chat, Nancy feels attended to and doesn’t call for the rest of the day.  Nancy does drop by 710 East Main from time to time, not because she feels neglected, but because she wants to shoot the breeze.  The real bright side for you is that after 5pm sharp; no business calls come to your cell. They go straight to your professional, personalized voicemail, where your clients can leave a message that you can get to when time permits.

Yes, privacy can be difficult to maintain for un-officers, but a virtual office at Your SMARTOFFICE Solution can certainly make that task a lot easier with a professional address at 710 East Main Street, a cheerful receptionist, and private meeting rooms.

 

 

Your SMARTOFFICE Solution SHARE-A-THON 2014

Standard

7-14.pptxShare-A-Thon 2014 for Your SMARTOFFICE Solution is a social sharing contest that can lead to HUGE savings.  From July 15 to August 15th, SMARTOFFICE Social Media accounts will be abuzz with content throughout this period.  We’ll post at least five times per day, all you have to do is share, like, comment, retweet, and engage with the posts.  I’ll track engagement weekly.   At the end of the Share-A-Thon the top sharer will receive their 100% off recurring fees for December 2014. That’s right!  ONE MONTH FREE.  It all starts tomorrow!

 

 

How Sharing the Right Content Can Empower Your Social Selling

Standard

social-media-content-sharingAuthor: Tara Meehan; Source

It’s human nature to do things just for the sake of doing them. You watch TV because it’s there and it claims to be smarter than you. Maybe you surf the net because you have other stuff to do but just don’t want to be bothered. No judgment. Most times, doing stuff just to do it is harmless. But in business, specifically in marketing and sales, doing something just to say you did can be disastrous. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the majority of social media content sharing approaches I see on a daily basis. Honestly, it’s a bit of a horror show.

Before you share your next piece of 3rd party that’s about nothing at all or proprietary social content that goes right for the sale, I want you to ask yourself 4 questions:

1 – Who are you? – This should be easy but it’s quite possibly the hardest question you’ll ever have to answer.

2 – What do you do? – Don’t just answer with a title. Go beyond that.

3 – What are you truly passionate about? – This doesn’t have to be a professional passion. If you’re a sports nut, own it.

4 – How can you bring value to your client’s lives? – I hope you’re able to answer this. If you can’t, you may want to reevaluate what it is you do. If you can or at least think you can, mirror this value proposition with the content that you share.

And there’s that word – content. I have to admit that word bugs me. It’s pronounced slightly differently than content but for many in social selling it far too often comes to be synonymous. NEVER under any circumstances, be content with the content you share.

Think about what you share and like on your personal Facebook profile. Are you posting pictures, videos, and articles that fill you with lukewarm fuzzies? I highly doubt it. You are sharing information that you feel strongly about. So why are you playing it safe on the business side?

Let’s revisit those 4 questions again. This time, I’ll give you some tips on how to answer them authentically and strategically.

1 – Who are you? – You are a human being; not a corporate robot. You have interests that transcend the boardroom. Yes, sharing content that speaks to your professional objectives is important but giving of yourself through the photos, videos, and articles you share with your network will give a compelling 360 view of you. If you ran a 5K, let your network know. I can assure you, such a post will never come from me.

2 – What do you do? – If you’re a children’s advocate, show it through the content you share – causes, volunteer initiatives. If you’re a financial representative, show it through the content you share – financial calculators designed to help folks manage their personal finances, videos depicting the protection-based importance of a strong retirement portfolio.

3 – What are you truly passionate about? – If you’re an avid gardener or a foodie, show it through the content you share – local restaurants, area flower shows, wine tastings your neighbors shouldn’t miss out on. This will appreciate it. Wouldn’t you?

4 – How can you bring value to your client’s lives? – This is a market and life event play. What is your largest market? Medical? Legal? Small business owners? Show value through the content you share – health and wellness news, tips on drafting stronger contracts, articles from local business journals. Second, what are some of the life events impacting your market? Is your network comprised of millennials buying their first home? Entrepreneurs starting a new venture? Baby boomers sending their kids off to college? Show value through the content you share – are you getting my drift?

I’m not going to get on you for doing stuff just to do it. Heck, I’m about to channel hop just because the remote is on my lap. When it comes to social content, stop before you start. What you share will be perceived as an extension of who you are. It will keep you top of mind with your network. So do you want to look content or do you want to appear passionate…

5 Smart Moves for Social Media Marketing

Standard

smarties_441__1Be A Real Social Media SMARTY

 

Author: Julie Lowe, www.sociallyaligned.com Source: Social Media Day Flyer

  1. Optimize your social media accounts so that you can be found in search results.
  2. Post 2-3 times per day on Facebook to keep reach and engagement levels up.
  3. Keep the “social” in social media.  Ask and answer questions.  Provide a TONE of value
  4. You don’t have to be on every social channel, just the right networks for your business.
  5. The only think worse than no presence on social, is a neglected presence. Be Active! 

Learn how to avoid common mistakes, and get an unfarir advantage over your competition at www.sociallyaligned.com

Jobs are Over: The Future is Income Generation- Part 1

Standard

Author: Heather McGowan

Source: LinkedIn

This is part one of a four-part series on the changing shape of employment, the emergence of the collaborative economy, and the potential impacts on higher education. Insights for this piece came in part from the recent Thomas Friedman Next New World Summit of thought leaders in education, technology, entrepreneurship, and consulting. Here are links to Jobs are Over Part 2Part 3, and an interview with Future of Work Researcher Stowe Boyd based upon the series.

The era of using education to get a job, to build a pension, to then retire is over. Not only is average is over and the world flat, but this is the end of employment, as we once knew it. The future is one of life-long learning, serial short- term employment engagements, and the creation of a portfolio of passive and active income generation through monetization of excess capacity and marketable talents.

Where did this change begin? From 1981 to 2001, the U.S. economy experienced the beginning of middle-class income stagnation with most job growth focused in lower-paying jobs (evidenced by a flattening of median household income vs. GDP). Starting in 2001, even that job growth all but disappeared as companies began outsourcing middle-skill labor – anything that is routine either mentally or physically – to history. Work was automated, digitized, robotized, and/or broken into job fragments that can be supplied from anywhere in the world. Since the great recession of 2008 both GDP growth and labor productivity have risen while private employment has declined – rapidly[i]. This is new normal, employment as we’ve known it, is over.

This was one of the my key takeaways from attending the Thomas Friedman’s Next New World Summit, a summit of thought leaders from across the value chain, from education(Sebastian Thrun, co-founder of Udacity and Tony Wagner, author of The Global Achievement Gap), to technology (Lazlo Bock, SVP of People Operations at Google and Andrew McAfee, author of the Second Machine Age), to entrepreneurship (Ben Kaufman, founder and CEO of Quirky), including those who track and monitor these tectonic shifts (James Manyika, Senior Partner, McKinsey and Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn).

Part two covers the blurring of education, career, and retirement.
Part three will posit what this may mean for institutions of higher education and their need for transformational change.
Part four will cover the need for a new social contract.

More Information:

Heather McGowan advises presidents, provosts, and other senior leadership in higher educational institutions to work with faculty and staff to make the transformational changes necessary to thrive in this emerging new normal. Most recently she advised the President and Provost of Philadelphia University on the creation of the Kanbar College of Design, Engineering, and Commerce– the first undergraduate college in the US focused exclusively and explicitly on innovation. This college has won national awards, was endowed with a $20M gift, and is the subject of the collaboratively written book, Disrupt Together: How Teams Consistently Innovate (Pearson 2013). Ms. McGowan recently began advising the President of Becker College in Massachusetts on their strategy to transformation Becker College to Becker University with an explicit focus on addressing the complex, changing landscape of higher education.

Ms. McGowan also provides strategic visioning work (single frame visuals to represent problem statements and opportunity spaces) to corporate clients.

Heather McGowan’s Amazon Author Page

www.heathermcogwan.net

Follow me on Twitter

June 2014 Newsletter

Standard
New YSOS MEMBERS
YSOS Welcomes the following business:

Notable Networkers
I spend a good deal of time each month networking with other business owners and sharing the joys of virtual officing.  From time to time, I come a cross a business that might be of benefit to the YSOS Community.  I’ll be sharing these businesses in our new Notable Networkers segment.
Lori   A.   Adkins
3150 Custer Dr
Suite 202
Lexington, KY 40517
(859) 351-0623  lori@alacarte.bz
If you’ve enjoyed the new and improved Your SMARTOFFICE Solution pens, then be sure to check out Lori Adkins with A’ la Carte Promotional Products.  She’s a true professional in the industry, and her consultative approach to helping me find a quality pen at a cost effective price added so much value to the shopping experience.  A’ la Carte Promotional Products assist with the promotion of your company, organization, product or service.  Contact A’ la Carte for fast quotes, hands-on customer service and competitive pricing.
___
YSOS Pen

Client of the Month
June 2014’s Client of the Month is

Medicurity

Eric Carpenter, 859-629-6104
eric@medicurity.com
Eric is the founding owner of MEDICURITY. He’s a Certified Estate Planner and certificated Paralegal with nearly 12 years experience in the specialized fields of Elder Law, administrative law, disability planning, and advanced estate planning. Respected by members of the legal community and bar as an expert in the area of Medicaid Planning,  Eric is a non-attorney representative and not a licensed, practicing attorney. He received his degree in Paralegal Studies from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, and gained his experience in the legal field as an Elder Law Paralegal for a Certified Elder Law Attorney in Dublin, Ohio. Additionally, he is a graduate of the National Institute of Certified Estate Planners, of which he is a member in good standing.  His professional affiliations have included membership in the paralegal section of the Ohio State Bar Association, National Federation of Paralegals Association, he is often asked to speak as an educator to attorneys,  financial planners, nursing home administrators, and other elder care professionals on topics related to Medicaid Planning, Asset protection Planning, and Public Benefits for disabled and elderly persons.  Eric is currently a member of the American Cancer Society’s Professional Advisor Network, National Care Planning Council, and National Institute of Certified Estate Planners.
Eric was lead to begin Medicurity by desire to empower and inform families on how to manage healthcare, legal, and financial issues associated with elderly and disability matters, and help families maintain control of their decisions, as well as life savings, home, and hard-earned income.
A good referral for Medicurity would be nursing home staff, attorneys who do not practice this specialized field of elder law, and financial
advisors.

Lexington Entrepreneurs & Freelancers Meetup Recap
Third Quarter Meetup
September 3, 2014
6:00 P.M.
I hope to see all of you there!

May 2014 Newsletter

Standard
New YSOS MEMBERS
YSOS Welcomes the following business:

 

Client of the Month
May 2014’s Client of the Month is
Andrew Van Horn, 859-629-6106
andrewvanhorn@actioncoach.com

Lexington Lunch and Learn: This is a recurring seminar, taking place on the second Tuesday of each month, that helps one local charity raise funds.  Each meeting last about an hour and a half and helps business owners learn some simple strategies that they can implement that afternoon.

6 Steps to a Better Business Seminar: This seminar is designed for every business and will take you through each step to climb the ladder of business growth and have a commercial, profitable enterprise that works without you.

5 Steps to Super Profits Seminar:There are truly only five ways to multiply your business profits but most business owners focus on the wrong things. In this seminar you’ll learn the five numbers every successful business focuses on improving.
ProfitCLUB is specifically designed for small to medium sized business owners and each event is designed so that you maximize your potential, build your business, build your network, build your profit and build your knowledge.
ActionCLUB is seven evening sessions on everything from setting your goals and vision right through to team building, marketing, sales and many of the basic fundamentals you need to get your business really moving. It’s like getting a semester of business education but it’s all proven in the real world and ready for you to implement immediately. So you’re focused on what you can do today to get your business moving.
GrowthCLUB – 90-Day Planning Workshop: GrowthCLUB is your chance to step out of the business and get focused. We’ll work with you to map out a winning game plan for the next 90 days. Plus with proven strategies and expert training, you and your team will get back to your business with clear direction and new tools to achieve your goals faster.  Learn the proven strategies business owners have used in the last 90 days to increase profits, build winning teams and work fewer hours. Listen hard. Take notes. Then adapt & adopt to get them working for you.
 
Notable Networkers
 I spend a good deal of time each month networking with other business owners and sharing the joys of virtual officing.  From time to time, I come a cross a business that might be of benefit to the YSOS Community.  I’ll be sharing these businesses in our new Notable Networkers segment. 
Kacey Hargis, (859) 200-8983
Specializing in AFFORDABLE 24 Hour Care 
Family Choice Care provides non-medical companion, homemaker, and personal care services to seniors, Alzheimers’ /Dementia, those recovering from surgery, new and expectant mothers, and others. Options include 24 hour live-in care or hourly care. All of our caregivers are carefully screened, bonded and insured, drug screened, TB tested, and undergo extensive background checks so you can trust you are getting the best possible assistance. Our agency also provides services to individuals who may reside in an assisted living facility or nursing home.   Located in Kentucky, Family Choice Home Care is a locally owned and operated business servicing the Greater Bluegrass Area.  Please give us a call today! 

LOWEST HOME CARE RATES IN THIS AREA!! 

Contact Kacey about the Family Choice Referral Program

Sheri Wood, 859-333-2958
swood@ArionGroup.net
 

As a small-business owner you wear a lot of hats. You perform multiple roles that might be handled by several employees in a larger business. When you’re stretched to the limit, it’s a relief to find a trusted partner to help. For help with your marketing materials and strategies, the Arion Group can allow you to spend more time doing what you do best.

 

The Arion Group works with small-business owners to create effective marketing pieces that stand out in a crowd. We create, produce and manage marketing projects in a timely and cost-efficient manner.

One of our most requested services is logo design. Our small-business package includes three original layouts for clients to choose from. We transfer rights for the finished logo to our clients through a signed agreement, so they are free to use it wherever they choose.

 Services:

Advertising for print and online
Brochures
Conference material design
Direct mail
Flyers
Illustration
Logo design

Newsletters for print and online
Publication design
Package design
Product sheets
POP displays
Social media consultation
Trade show banners and displays
Vehicle graphics
WordPress websites planning and creation

Lexington Entrepreneurs & Freelancers Meetup Recap
The second quarter meetup was a great success with 10 attendees representing a wide range of industries.  We look forward to more YSOS clients attending.  YSOS client, Edd Mackey of NovusMeridian (USA), LLC was in attendance.  The third quarter Meetup details are as follows:
Third Quarter Meetup
September 3, 2014
6:00 P.M.
I hope to see all of you there!