I wrote an article today on my main site blog about social media training, specifically how professionals can learn to think outsite the box and strategically learn from a network of experts. I wanted to share it with everyone here, and hope you get the point I am trying to convey.
My friend Joe Hage
and I did a marketing workshop last night for a small group of
professionals. Normally hosting a marketing workshop wouldn’t be a
noteworthy event, but in this case it is a wonderful case example of
starting a connection using social media and developing into a trusting
Who is Joe Hage?
As a professional, Joe is one of the few marketers I have met that
has an extreme grasp of both tactical and strategic marketing. He has a
sparkling resume of working with companies like Cardiac Science,
1-800-Flowers, Kraft Foods, Jell-O, and Safeco. When he originally met
me, Joe didn’t know a huge volumes about my specialty in social media,
and he immediately rolled up his sleeves and began devouring
information. In any line of marketing work, the ability to absorb new
concepts and create new strategies is essential to exceeding
expectations. From a business perspective- Joe is the “full meal deal”
when it comes to marketing strategy.
How did we meet?
I originally met Joe by being a casual member of a local online
community here in Seattle called Biznik. You can view both of our
friendly profiles here – Joe Hage and Barry Hurd. In terms of the relationship between us, Joe and I would simply not have met in real life if not for Biznik. Realizing
that two extremely busy professionals such as Joe and I can form a
strong and healthy relationship using online networking is an
eye-opener for other professionals like us.
How do we interact?
Joe and I use Biznik as a place to shed some of our daily job duties
and dive into a creative problem solving mindset working with
independent business owners. While I cannot speak entirely for Joe,
planning the occasional workshop with a different group of professional
personalities allows me to really flex my brain and bring my marketing
mind to bear. While some topics in such a class may seem very “101″ to
either of us, the unexpected difficulties and obstacles our attendees
have require us to think outside of our own box.
What was our workshop about?
The official positioning statement: “To Biznik members in the
real estate and related industries, Joe and Barry’s Real Estate
Marketing Workshop is your opportunity to learn and apply strategies
you need to better stand out in a market crowded with half-hearted real
In our two-hour session, you will:
- Apply recommendations from the real estate marketing article to your own business.
- Share and learn best practices used by fellow Bizniks in the space.
- Get Barry’s counsel on which search engine optimization key words are virtually impossible to get.
- Walk away with some of Barry’s best tricks to get your name on the Google searches you are targeting.
What did people learn?
A lot more than those four bullet points above. The
attendees had a chance to hear relevant and like-minded marketing
problems analyzed and trouble-shot by two marketing veterans. However
the real value only becomes apparent when the audience and the mentors
agree to see things from different angles.
In the normal world most of us accept our problems and obstacles
from our own point of view. When we see a wall in front of us, most of
us see an option to steer around it or stop.
Joe and I do not see things from the same angle. Yes we are both marketing professionals. Yes we both have a lot of experience.
Yet we each have a fundamental viewpoint and core to the way our mind works.
In an interactive workshop, attendees have the ability to utilize
the wisdom and talent of the entire group. Joe and I may lead the
discussion, but we cannot see how anyone else perceives the same
problem. We can only observe how we see it, along with how we view the
interaction of the group members.
By utilizing skill, talent, experience, and different perspectives –
a team of professionals working in unison can creatively offer
solutions to maneuver around almost any obstacle. With only a few extra
viewpoints, the team may also benefit from knowing what is behind the
obstacle before they even decide to expend the effort to get around it.
Conclusion – What does this mean in regards to social media?
Simply put= When used correctly, social media allows any professional to use the wisdom and talent of the entire conversation. They
may be smart and talented in respect to a certain field of focus, but
the intelligence, talent, and return on effort is magnified
significantly by the ability to accept that they may have a perspective
that is hindering progress. (I.E. truly wise people can admit that they
are wrong, not “the best”, or simply need help.)
As a professional who utilizes the online world, every day of my
life is exposed to the benefit of having hundreds of experts in my
network that serves as a sounding board to my own ideas. That exposure
is not just simply readership and promotion for my business, but
results in the benefit of my ideas interacting with the talented
viewpoint of professionals like Joe and all of you.