Archive | January 2018

Social Media Professionals Houston Businesses Needs To Know In 2018

By Cheval John

January 12th, 2018

Houston has long been known as the energy capital of the world.

It makes sense because the entire city was built directly and indirectly through the discovery of oil in the spindletop area in the early 20th century.

The riches made from the oil boom allowed people to form their own businesses in the growing city.

It even led one former Houston Post reporter Marcellus E. Foster to form the Houston Chronicle in 1901 despite the fact they already had two newspapers in the city with a population of about 45,000 residents at that time.

The Houston Chronicle outlasted the other newspapers to become the official newspaper of record (the Houston Post was bought and shut down by the Chronicle in 1995).

Another result of the oil boom was the creation of the Houston Ship Channel in 1914 which allowed the Port of Houston to become one of the largest cargo exporters in the United States due to connecting with the Gulf of Mexico.

The riches made from the wealthy also allowed them to create the Medical District, the largest area of hospitals in the world, the houston symphony orchestra, the houston ballet and many other places which has enriched the vibrancy of the city.

Why I went through the history lesson of houston you might ask?

Many outsiders only know the city of houston as the energy capital of the world.

They might not understand there is more to this city than meets the eye.

Though the oil and gas industry are the drivers of the houston economy, there are other business sectors which are comparable to other cities in the united states and even the world.

The city has a vibrant music scene where many independent artists create their sound and eventually get discovered by major music labels.

The food industry is very hip as well as they are thousands of restaurants in the city which some have said will take a lifetime to visit.

The above is quite impossible because many restaurants are closing every year while new restaurants are appearing at the same time.

Super Bowl 51 allowed visitors to see the different coffee shops, bars, burger joints, barbecue joints and restaurants the city had to offer.

Visitors also had the opportunity to see the thriving arts and entertainment scene the city has to offer.

They also might have been shocked to know the city of houston is among the few cities in the United States to have the the major artistry of the symphony orchestra, the ballet and the theather based in one area.

Many might be also be surprised to know Houston is among the places where the tech startup community is based.

Matt Mullenweg created this platform in the city of houston in 2003 from a code called b2/cafelog before changing the official name to wordpress.

And higher education institutions like the University of Houston and Rice University has set up incubators to allow startups to grow at a pace where they can be profitable on their own.

The non-higher education company which has also been a resource for startups is Station Houston.

Station Houston was created in March of 2016 to help startups connect with potential investors.

They give workshops on pitching to investors, growing your customer base and building a community around your brand.

Houston is also a hot bed for the social media industry.

Since every business sector must be on social media, they have to understand how to grow their audience and their business through this platform.

Unfortunately, people will have a tough time finding work as a social media professional in the city of houston.

According to Conductor, Houston was not even in the top ten for content marketing work and seo work.

It leads back to the oil and gas industry as they are rules and regulations on what you can report and what you can’t due to the competitive nature of the business sector.

Which leads to this point.

CEO’s, executives and C-Suite will have to be on social media in addition to the employees of each of the business sectors because people transparency from each brand.

They can not afford to do business as usual like they did in the past with comments about certain crisis or a change in the business structure with quote “said in a statement.”

Yes, they have to be very careful of what they say because it can become misunderstood by the public.

However, they can let the public know when an event is happening as quickly as they can, “We will answer all of your questions as soon as we can once we know all the details” in a crisis like an oil spill.

Or in the case of Walmart shutting down 63 Sam’s Clubs stores yesterday without giving their workers any warning about their change in direction of the business.

At least the rest of the workers in other stores within Walmart know they will be out of work soon.

Samantha Kelly, who is a twitter expert and founder of “The Women’s Inspire Network” said this statement in Social Media Examiner:

“CEOs will no longer be able to avoid social media. They’ll become the company’s biggest marketer by engaging with customers and allies more regularly and showing more behind the scenes and the human side, which will increase sales and brand advocates.”

This further explains that leadership from every business sector especially here in the city of houston must be on social media this year or wind up losing business to their competitors who are already there.

It does not mean for them to just broadcast their message hoping to get a sale on the first interaction.

It means taking the time to build trust with their customers consistently.

So they might be wondering how to get started with building a community with their customers on social media.

And which social media agency or professional corporations and organizations can work with.

Here are the top social media professionals here in houston I believe will be the best bet to guide them in taking their social media activities to the next level.

This list is not in any particular order

KAMI HUYSE

Kami is the founder of Zoetica Media, an agency which provide social media services to the health care sector, the non-profits and the travel industry.

She has been a public relations professional for more than twenty years prior to founding her company.

Kami is also the co-founder behind the Social Media Breakfast Houston, a monthly event which started in 2009.

Social Media Breakfast Houston is also live streamed on Facebook.

KRISTYNA TORRES-CRUZ

Known as “PR Kristyna”, she provides workshops and seminars about social media to the non-profit sectors.

Kristyna also does some live streaming surrounding tips to using social media to build an audience.

One of the best advice a person can follow from her is this: “Do not post the same content to other social media platforms because each of the platforms have different audiences and it comes across as lazy” #paraphrased.

Kristyna worked as a social media volunteer during Super Bowl 51 last year.

REBECCA COUNCILL

Rebecca is a social media professional who provides services to small businesses.

She is also a certified evernote consultant and businesses who needs helps with this platform can find her.

Rebecca is the founder of Social Media Day Houston, a one day event which brings together speakers on different social media topics and is indirectly part of the global Social Media Day event which was started by Mashable.

She also had the opportunity to work as a social media volunteer during Super Bowl 51 last year.

KRISTY GILLENTINE

Kristy is a former journalist and producer, who is the Vice President of Public Engagement for Drive West Communications.

She is also the creator of #chatsnap, the first twitter chat talking all things surrounding snapchat.

Kristy has done some snapchat takeovers including one for her former employer, KTRK-TV, a Houston media station.

She has also been featured on top blogs including Hootsuite and Social Media Examiner.

KEN WATSON

Ken is the founder of Watson Knowledge Services, a agency which provides small businesses with social media audits and consulting.

His main expertise is instagram.

Ken started #chatgram, the first twitter chat about all topics surrounding the instagram platform.

He also worked as a social media volunteer during Super Bowl 51 last year.

BOBBIE BYRD AND LISA STAUBER
Bobbie and Lisa are the co-founders of Quirky Owl Media, an agency which provides social media services to small businesses.

It is the parent company of Blog Elevated, an annual conference which brings together speakers on topics surrounding blogging.

They also co-host #blogelevated, a twitter chat which is an extension of the conference and was featured in Hootsuite’s blog.

They have spoken at Social Media Day Houston last year.

ERIC T. TUNG

Eric is the Digital Director for Go To Marketers, a Canadian based company.

He has spoken at Social Media Marketing World twice and was featured in media outlets like Forbes and The New York Times.

Eric has also been the guest speaker at Social Media Breakfast Houston and has build a strong online presence.

ANH T NGUYEN

Anh is the founder of Amplified Marketing, which provides services for mid-sized organizations.

She is also the co-host of #mobilechat, a twitter chat about topics surrounding mobile technology.

Anh has made appearances on Livestream Universe and has spoken at Social Media Breakfast Houston.

MADALYN SKLAR
Madalyn is a twitter expert who has build communities via Twitter Chats.

She was among the first to live tweet at a conference event when Twitter was in the early stages.

Madalyn hosts #twittersmarter, a chat about topics surrounding twitter.

She is also the host of #socialroi which recently celebrated it’s one year anniversary and is produced by Manage Flitter.

Madalyn has made many appearances on many media outlets including Al Jazeera and the Huffington Post.

JILLIAN GOLTZMAN

Jillian is an instagram expert and influencer.

She blogs at Cup of Charisma, where she shares tips on fashion and social good.

Jillian is also an account supervisor at Integrate, an award winning digital agency.

She was among the speakers at the inaugural Hispanicize Houston event last year.

Jillian has spoken at Social Media Breakfast Houston and was featured in the Houston Chronicle.

BASYA BENSHUSHAM

Basya is the founder of Pink Cilantro, a digital agency which focuses on social media and data.

The company has worked with brands like AT&T.

She has spoken at Social Media Breakfast Houston about data focused social media.

ASHLEY JOHNSON

Ashley is the founder of Mouth Marketing, LLC, a marketing agency which provides consulting to small businesses and startups.

Their specialty is LinkedIn because they have grown their business through the social platform.

Ashley has spoken at Social Media Day Houston in 2016 and 2017.

She has made an appearance on media outlets including Texas Business Radio and Voyage Houston.

AIMEE WOODALL

Aimee is the founder of The Black Sheep Agency, a marketing company which works with non-profits and for profit businesses who does social good.

She has been recognized by the Houston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 in 2014 and has been featured in media outlets including the Houston Chronicle, Fast Company and the Huffington Post.

Her company took part in former first lady Michelle Obama’s campaign, “Better Make Room” which brought one billion impressions on social media.

There you have it, the list of social media professionals who I believe will add value to your corporation and organization.

Did I miss anyone who you believe should be on this list? You can leave your comment below.

Michelle Muenzler, Author and Nicknamed “The Cookie Lady”

By Cheval John

January 10th, 2018

Today’s episode features Michelle Muenzler, who is an author of many books and a speaker.

She has spoken at many conventions around the state of Texas including the Houston Comicpalooza.

The backstory of how I met Michelle happened when I was a last minute substitute to moderate a panel about how writers use social media to build brand awareness for a self-published author at Comicpalooza last year.

I had always heard a lot about Comicpalooza and how it was filled with celebrities who build their status with past shows.

Living here in Houston the last couple of years, I knew this was my opportunity to attend the famed event, so I was happy to moderate the panel.

While preparing for the writer’s panel in the meeting room, Michelle walked in asked if anyone wanted cookies she made.

I gladly accepted and I got to hear her presentation at comicpalooza.

In this episode, you will hear:

-what led Michelle to become a fiction author full time
-the importance of social media
-her favorite sports team
-why she left Twitter
-why she brings cookies at every convention she attends

This episode was recorded on Facebook Live via Blue Jeans Network late last year.

Snippet on Vallano Media TV (I had dropped my bag which had the computer and my screen had turned green. Thankful the computer is o.k.)

Full episode on BlogTalkRadio

Website: www.michellenmuenzler.com

Quotes from Michelle Muenzler on:

SPEAKING AT CONVENTIONS

Conventions are a lot of fun.

They are a lot of work, but a lot of fun.

I’m naturally kind of an introvert, so extroverting for a weekend takes a lot of work and mental preparation and a little body armor.

There’s something about just being able to go in and be on a panel with a bunch of other writers and just kind of talk shop that I know is really enjoyable.

The fact that comicpalooza (houston) invited me back two years in a row has been awesome.

I’m hoping to go again this next year (this year).

I do a lot of the Dallas area conventions, the small library conferences up at Roanoke (Texas).

Austin (Texas) has armadillo con which is always a lot of fun.

So it’s a great way to connect with people and hang out with other writers.

You get to hang out with fans and booksellers.

It’s like a giant happy family.

SOCIAL MEDIA

It can be a terrible distraction, but also a wonderful way to connect.

I tend to mostly hang out on Facebook because I can control a bit better how much I’m interacting.

I used to do a whole lot of Twitter, but I found myself obsessing too much over reading every single thing that every single person on my feed posted and it just got to be way too much.

I can’t shut my brain down enough to kind of let it be for the day and interact whenever I happen to cross over.

It’s been really great for getting writer news like information on markets.

Information on what’s going on in the industry.

Get to chat with fans and hear about everyone’s cats.

It’s allowed me to kind of get in touch with a lot more people.

FACEBOOK BEING HER FAVORITE PLATFORM

I think I like it because it’s a slightly longer format, but not too long.

It’s happening somewhat real time, well Facebook algorithms aside from how they keep screwing with the order we see everything.

People are posting whenever they feel like it.

They can post longer things about what’s going on in their lives.

You have a little bit of a chance to kind of react to it and talk about it.

It’s all consolidated in one space.

So it’s not quite as lengthy or like thrown out as a blog is.

I keep track of a number of blogs.

But I have a little bit of trouble just connecting with them on that same personal level.

There’s just something about being able to instantly interact on Facebook, but with it not being too short.

Like a comfort medium.

BRINGING COOKIES TO EVERY CONVENTION

What I found at conventions as a short story author is it’s a little bit easy to kind of disappear.

Even a lot of novelists kind of struggle with standing out.

It’s a very highly competitive industry full of fantastic writers.

So you want to stand out a little bit.

I found number one, the cookies kind of helped people remember me based off of that.

In addition, I also am rather the introvert and I found the cookies kind of helped give me a safety net or a magical shield a la Captain America minus flinging it at people.

When in doubt, pass out the cookies.

I can meet people and just randomly walk around and be like, “greeting stranger, have a cookie.”

It’s made it a lot easier actually to meet people and to break ice and to not get all caught up in my own head.

It’s been very useful for that and people actually recognize me.

At armadillo con this year (last year), someone came up and they’re like, “oh my gosh, you’re the cookie lady from comicpalooza.”

It works.

I spend the entire day before every convention baking those 700 cookies.

So it’s a lot of work, but a lot of fun and everyone loves cookies.

Do Not Underestimate The Power Of Twitter Chats

By Cheval John

We have heard predictions of how twitter was going to be bought by a major media company by a certain time.

We also heard how Twitter was not relevant anymore because they were not “growing” in user base.

Some saw twitter as a place where people spam others hoping to make a sale.

I can understand what they mean due to the constant automated direct messages from people who are asking to like their business page or subscribe to their blog.

The truth is twitter has always been relevant since it began in 2006.

Just because they have 330 million active users compared to Facebook’s almost 2 billion users does not mean Twitter is not important.

No other social media platform (with the exception of snapchat) have come close to where you can interact with anyone in “real time.”

There is a level playing field when you can chat with a celebrity or with an “influencer” any time you want to on Twitter.

Those who think Twitter is not relevant are missing a huge opportunity to stand out from their competition.

They do not realize the majority of journalists from media organizations have Twitter accounts.

Most of them will share another side of themselves and also interact with their fans.

The smart entrepreneurs will take the time to build a relationship with the journalists on Twitter and sometimes see the behind the scenes of what they are working on for a news cast.

This can save them from ending up in the journalists’ spammer list because most companies still use the dreaded press release in order to get placement in the media outlet.

If they share the journalists’ article consistently to their audience on twitter, the journalist will notice.

Unfortunately, most corporations and organizations uses twitter as a broadcast only channel to promote their events to the journalists on the platform.

They think the golden days of advertising still works today.

When they do not see the quick results from their tweets, then they whine like spoiled brats wondering why their campaign is not working.

They also will blame Twitter and tell everyone it is not worth the investment because they did not see the results they were hoping for.

That is probably why they thought social media was a fad because it clearly went against the conventional wisdom of advertising.

And why small businesses, mid-sized businesses and even micro-businesses will always win because they are using Twitter to build a community around their brand.

One of the methods they use to build a community is hosting a Twitter Chat.

A twitter chat are conversations with like-minded people surrounding a hashtag.

Think of it like a focus group that happens every week.

The topics can range from social media marketing, how to build a successful blog, or how to host events if you are in the event planning business.

The brands can use these twitter chats to learn more from the community.

They can even get topic ideas for their blog.

Most companies produces a recap from the twitter chats on their blog and feature the best answers from the participants.

This is another way for the company to highlight their community and share their expertise with their audience.

This is the cherry on the cake for the participants because they are contributing to the twitter chats and also getting exposure to the host’s blog audience.

The participants in turn can share the twitter chat recap to their audience on social which gives the brand exposure to prospective clients.

They can also create a press page on their website featuring the recap from the brand’s blog.

It’s a win-win for both the twitter chat host and the participants.

For those who are looking to run a twitter chat in the new year, here is a list from the most successful twitter chats.

#TwitterSmarter: Thursdays at 1 p.m. eastern time

Twitter Smarter is hosted by Madalyn Sklar, a podcaster, business coach and houston social media power influencer.

She started the chat in mid 2015 after her podcast by the same name became very popular.

The chat talks about ways to use twitter wisely and has a plethora of guests.

Twitter Smarter also became very popular due to the number of participants who are there on a regular basis.

Another reason for the fast growth is Madalyn has hosted another twitter chat for five years surrounding the Go Girls Community prior to starting Twitter Smarter.

#ContentWritingChat: Tuesdays at 11 a.m. eastern time

Content Writing Chat is hosted by Express Writers.

Topics surrounds putting out quality content, having a content calendar, seo, etc.

This chat also features guests who shares valuable information to the community.

Each month, they have open forum in which they ask the community tips on improving their content.

#ChatGram: Tuesdays at 1 p.m. eastern time

Chat Gram is host by Ken Watson, a houston social media power influencer

This is the first twitter chat surrounding the use of instagram.

Participants share on topics like the importance of instagram stories and how to spot bots.

The chat also has guests who are experts on instagram.

#ChatSnap: Wednesdays at 2 p.m. eastern time

Chat Snap is hosted by Kristy Gillentine, a former journalist and houston social media power influencer.

This is the first twitter chat all about snapchat.

Participants attend this chat to learn about building a community on snapchat, how businesses can benefit from snapchat, etc.

This chat also features guests who are experts in all things snapchat.

#MediaChat: Thursdays at 10 p.m. eastern time

Media Chat is hosted by Aaron Kilby, vice president of sales and marketing for Artisan Colour.

Guests have included experts ranging from social media to live streaming.

#WinnieSun: Wednesdays at 2 p.m. eastern time

This chat is hosted by the co-founder of Sun Group Wealth Partners, Winnie Sun.

It features different experts from the finance industry who share tips on managing your money.

Topics also surrounds social media which Winnie Sun has leverage to gain the right clients for the company.

#BlogElevated: Mondays at 10 p.m. eastern

Blog Elevated is co-hosted by Bobbie Byrd and Lisa Stauber.

Topics range from improving your blog to using live streaming.

The twitter chat is an extension of the blog elevated conference which brings in speakers who are experts in blogging.

Both co-founders are houston social media power influencers as well.

Did I miss any twitter chats from this list? You can leave your comments below.

Kerry Gorgone, Host of The MarketingProfs Podcast

By Cheval John

January 3rd, 2018

Today’s episode of What’s The Word? features Kerry Gorgone.

Kerry is the host of The MarketingProfs podcast, a show which interviews thought leaders in the marketing industry.

The show recently celebrated it 300th episode late last year.

Kerry also is a returning guest as she made an appearance on the 250th episode of my podcast.

In this episode, you will hear:

-How she celebrated their milestone of 300th episodes of the Marketing Profs
-Choosing Between Live Streaming and Podcasting
-The first concert Kerry ever attended
-If Kerry and Ann Handley released their “Christmas album”

Snippet on Vallano Media TV

Full episode on BlogTalkRadio

Kerry Gorgone’s Website: www.kerrygorgone.com

Twitter: @kerrygorgone

Quotes from Kerry Gorgone on:

300TH EPISODE OF MARKETING PROFS

What’s interesting about what Lou Imbriano had to say was it’s not just about X plus Y equals Z.

You can’t just do the same thing no matter what type of business you are.

Every customer segment is a little bit different.

Every business is a little bit different.

You can not give a formula about how to build a relationship.

You have to just be prepared to go the extra mile for your customers and know what it is you know or anticipate.

What it is that certain segments need and really genuinely express I think empathy and interest in helping them get the most out of your product or service.

It is a lot more human and it’s much more of an art than a science sometimes.

Sure there’s data behind how often those people renew because you put in the extra effort.

But can you draw a straight line between opening after hours so that somebody can get their work done because they are on a deadline and extra revenue through renewal?

That would be difficult, but the relationship is there nonetheless.

That’s what was interesting about Lou.

He works a lot now.

He was with the (New England) Patriots before.

So it’s very different kind of marketing.

But you still had your super fans and then you’re more casual fans and then people who maybe come to a game now and then and people who just don’t care about sports at all.

So who are you going to focus on?

Obviously, the people who cares and spend money with you.

LIVE STREAMING

Depends on your business.

It can always help you.

If you are talking about driving real specific business objectives, I think if you do events, even a user conference, then live streaming would be very beneficial to you because you are going to create kind of a fear of missing out among the people who did not attend the event and they’re going want to come next time.

So there’s a lot to be said for featuring users, customers, clients, employees, etc.

Live streaming gives you a look at someone literally that you could not get any other way from a glossy headshot and a well-written piece or even an audio podcast to a point.

I think that’s always gonna benefit you.

If you are selling Lamborghinis, then live stream, not while driving because it would be irresponsible.

I think it’s very valuable.

So the more you can do something different, the better your results are going to be for gaining some initial exposure.

Live streaming that way can be good too.

PODCASTING

You have seen an incredible renaissance in podcasting because it is so much easier for people to produce them and publish them.

It’s so much easier for people to find and listen to them.

Edison Research does this great series year after year called “The Infinite Dial

It talks about the podcast listening audience.

It’s growing and is really valuable.

The people that listen to a podcast on average make more money.

They are more inclined to interact with brands online.

So if you are in marketing, you should be podcasting because the people who listen to podcasts, they are the people you want.

It’s better than a lot of other marketing channels we invest a lot in and do not think twice about.

From a qualitative perspective, it literally gives you your customers ear.

There is an intimacy to that.

I’ve had people recognize me at marketing profs events just from my voice which is hysterical to me.

There’s something very personal about it as well.

I just think it’s a medium unlike any other.

Not only is the research there to support that it’s growing, but anecdotally, people seem to gravitate towards it.

CHOOSING BETWEEN LIVE STREAMING AND PODCASTING

You can consider a live stream a podcast if you do it regularly.

It’s not audio only.

I mean you could have a video podcast.

For one thing, you must have effective live stream if you are video podcasting because it’s really hard to edit video.

So if you stutter or something and try to fix that, you will be like a jump out in the video.

If you’re a little skittish of post-production, then live streaming might be preferable for you.

If on the other hand, you’re afraid of saying something wrong, then maybe start out with an audio podcast because you can fix that.

So it’s really a question of your goals and your preferences.

There are times that watching a video is not convenient.

Going to the gym comes to mind.

You should not be watching a video while sitting in the car.

It’s just different.

You are reaching people at a different time.

The only thing is a lot of people watch videos with the volume off because they don’t want to get caught at work.

Unless they have close captioning or something, they’re not going to know what you are saying.

Did you enjoy this post? You can leave your comment below.