B-Musings – Get Up, Stand Up Edition

12 01 2017

“B-Musings”… sharing random blurbiage and ping-pong balls rattling around my dome.  

The Purge – Every year, I make a conscious effort to trim down my Facebook Friends List. Not to be mean-spirited or anything like that… it just a process of cleaning up my timeline. It’s kind of a “new year” thang.

unfriendI tend to “friend” people haphazardly. If you reach out to me, and we have a few friends in common, I’ll usually make the connection. I’m always eager to expand my network. But once a year – usually in January – I trim down the list.

If I haven’t had any meaningful dialogue with someone in the past year, he/she gets whacked. That is my only requirement, except for people in my list who have passed on. If you die, we are friends forever. Weird, I know…

But this year I was forced to add some new criteria, mostly because of the heightened political atmosphere. Tough decisions were made, deleting some long time connections.‪ But at the end of the day, social media is supposed to be fun. Right?

So if we are no longer connected, some of the reasons are below:

  • Our morality differed… for example, I don’t make jokes about gun violence.
  • You bullied my other friends.
  • You repeatedly shared fake news or websites to further some agenda (whether I agree with that agenda or not).
  • You were a dick.

Doesn’t seem like much, but it added up to 159 people. Sorry… do better. Be nicer. Don’t be a dick.

Social media was invented to be fun. (Well… Facebook was actually invented so Zuckerberg could get laid. But that’s fun, right?)

We may not always see eye-to-eye, and if we disagree I always appreciate a good, respectful argument. So, I’m glad we are still friends… for now!

Feral MerylMy mail carrier is terrific. She is consistently on time, and knocks the door when delivering a package. She is always smiling and happy. But while she is very good at her job, her political views are not important to me.

nixonelvisI’m not a fan of celebrity. I respect and appreciate the talents of actors, musicians or sports figures, and anyone who excels in their chosen fields. Are you an expert on politics because you’ve won an Oscar, Emmy, Grammy or a Super Bowl? Um… no. I don’t tune in to a movie or sporting event to hear the news or political opinions. I’m escaping from that stuff.

Sports figures, especially coaches, hate when they are questioned about tactics or strategy. The general public knows nothing about the intricacies of their sport. So why should we care about your political views, Charles Barkley?

Meryl Streep is the best actress in history. Challenge that statement, I dare ya. So when she took the stage this week to accept a lifetime achievement award, I expected her usual funny and humble acceptance. And when she launched into her political speech I started to cringe.

Don’t get me wrong… I agree with every syllable of her speech. It was delivered beautifully, and it clearly resonated with the audience in the theater and around the world. Of course it did… she is the best actress on the planet reading from a very professionally written script. But I turned the TV on that night for entertainment, not a political speech.

I love you, Meryl. I agree with your statement. You deserve every acting award in the world, and I will continue to watch your movies. Now sit down and shut the fuck up.

You too, Scott Baio and Ted Nugent! (Trying to be fair…)

An Appreciation – I wrote these words last April: “At the end of the day, I want my President to represent our country positively and professionally, and be committed to keeping my family safe.”

fullsizerender-19For the past eight years, I’ve had that with Barack Obama.

I didn’t always agree with his policies. In fact, I sometimes disagreed strongly. But that is to be expected with the complexity of issues faced by a President.

But in January of 2009, he entered the office with so much raw energy, optimism and hope. He still has all of that, and a few more gray hairs. We pretty much knew he was a good man, and he proved it to us. Every day, he worked tirelessly for his country while facing unprecedented opposition and unfathomable hatred.

And for every minute of those eight years, President Obama and his family have represented our country with dignity and grace. History will determine if he was a good President – I think it will show him to be a great one.

Like many people, I’m scared for my country. But I won’t dwell on that.

Today, I’ll just thank the President of the United States for a job well done.

As with anything I write, I welcome your comments and spirited, respectful debate. 

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Glance Links – August 2014

1 08 2014

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I like to fill this post with links that will help your marketing efforts. But since I’m on vacation and in a pretty good mood, I thought I would share some examples of “social media done right” with these favorite Facebook pages. The only criteria is that each are funny or interesting (or both), and engaging to their communities. Enjoy!

Upper Darby Police Department – The boys in blue in this Philadelphia suburb (pictured above) stay connected to their community with this hilarious page, with great stories about just how funny peeps and perps can be. It’s also full of news and crime reports… serious when it needs to be. Kudos to this genius content creator.

George-TakeiGeorge Takei – Actor, artist, activist… renaissance man. He’s done it all and he posts some hysterical stuff. Oh Myyyy….

The Order of the Good Death – Caitlin is a Los Angeles-based mortician who sees death everyday, and shares her interesting, albeit unusual insights into dying. Not very funny, but certainly insightful. And definitely worth a look.

10462459_928795490469983_2205502833807129176_nRandom Hearts with Roxy and Friends – This is a charming page that my cousin put up a few months ago, and it never ceases to make me smile. Roxy challenges us all to find and post images of hearts, and her friends have responded with photos… everything from clouds to water stains to bruised toenails. I’ve yet to be so inspired, but I’m still looking. Shouldn’t we all be? Follow her for that extra little nudge…

We Are Ultras – Allow me just one soccer page to promote… dedicated to the Women Soccer Supporters of the world – The Ultras. The women who hold nothing back. The women who know Ultra is a way of life! May the soccer gods bless them all!

10590473_692454767476177_3217539378266761369_nDangerous Minds – Celebrating weirdness of all kinds, with specific favorites like 60’s and 70’s advertising, obscure punk rock and various counter-culture oddities. You may not find it funny or interesting, and you may just shake your head a little… if it is still attached! I guarantee you will share something on this site with your warped friends!!

The Onion – Yeah, yeah… who doesn’t know about the Onion? But they make me laugh multiple times a day, and any list would be incomplete without them. The standard bearer for online, irreverent satire since 1765.

This is my weird, fun stuff… where is yours? Share your favorite pages…





Flippin’ Facebook

8 07 2014

cs9NN“I’ve had it with Facebook.” ~ John Q. Public

How many times have you heard this complaint? The constantly changing layout, hard to follow rules, more ads in your news feed, and the dwindling reach for company pages… flippin’ Facebook is a nightmare! Users can’t comprehend how Facebook has the nerve to make changes to the FREE site they love so much, and company page owners are mad that they now actually have to PAY for Facebook advertising. It’s exasperating!

Users need to relax. Breathe… Embrace the changes, because they are almost always designed to give you a more positive experience. The ads are the price you pay for using Facebook for free. And be honest, you get enough out of the Facebook experience to justify putting up with a few ads in your News Feed. The reality is that everyone has the right to make money – including the gods of Facebook. To think otherwise is Un-American! Truthfully, I can’t believe they took this long to end the free ride for company pages.

I’ve been speaking with a lot of small business owners about the decreasing reach of Facebook company posts. While we have been lamenting the decline, it should cause us to embrace and understand exactly what Facebook advertising can do. That “free” ride has been over for a while now, but Facebook is still the best way to target specific customers.

20130812-full1If you have been doing it correctly, you have built a Facebook following of the right people – people who want to do business with you. And you have been providing them with good content that helps grow your business. “Boosting” those great posts to your loyal “listeners” must now be a part of your budget. Low cost Promoted Posts not only reach your followers but can be expanded further to reach potential customers, by using specific demographic targeting and keywords – at very affordable prices.  I’m not saying that every post deserves boosting, because your core customers will probably visit your page frequently. Pick your spots and, most importantly, track your results.

Boosting works. Ads are similar, and certainly hit a wider audience. Think about spending $50 to reach 10,000 very specific people… Can that be accomplished with any other traditional B2C advertising method?

Whether you do a Facebook Ad or a Promoted Post, dedicate a portion of your marketing budget to make a big impact. If you are a small business it is a no-brainer. You’ll wonder why you weren’t doing this all along.

And quit yer whining…





Glance Links – April 2014

28 04 2014

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Just some stuff that caught my eye recently, and might help you in your marketing efforts! If you have any that you would like to pass on to me… hit me up!

Internet-Addiction-Social-MediaSocial Media For Increased Mental Health – Many thanks to Chuck Hall from SoMeBizLife for sharing this article that examines the positive and negative effects of social media, specifically Facebook. Chuck used this article as a discussion point in a recent seminar, and I’m sure it really got the conversation off and running. What are your thoughts?

Some Thoughts on the Imminent Demise of Google+ – Three words… “It ain’t happening!” I’ve recently been beating the streets about the wonders of this platform, which I think is extremely worthwhile for the search boost alone. The recent resignation announcement of Google+ champion Vic Gundotra has set the interwebs abuzz with panic. Two of my purple haired friends (not saying I have many), Lynette Young and Cecily Kellogg, recently shared how fantastic articles on the subject. The common theme is DON’T PANIC. Here are the two articles they shared:

The Power of FailingWhat do the world’s greatest entrepreneurs have in common? The courage to fail. Checkout this article and discover why failure is the ultimate driving force behind genius.

failingThe Experts Speak – The most common question I hear from small businesses interested in social media is, “Where do I start?” Here is some great information from the email marketing site, Constant Contact… 50 Expert Tips for Getting Started in Social Media. It’s cool that I know some of these people, including one of the aforementioned purple haired friends

Spring has sprung. May it bring to you many exciting ideas… JL





Glance Links – September 2013

2 09 2013

helpful-links

Just some stuff that caught my eye recently, and might help you in your marketing efforts!  If you have any that you would like to pass on to me… hit me up!

social-media-managementAre Your Employees Socially Illiterate? –  I hope not. Social Media policies are a must, both as part of your marketing plan and to set employee expectations. As this article suggests, there is an ignored “potential of socially literate employees who use these tools and services to increase their own competence and thus the competence of the business.” Trust in them, and allow your employees to truly be part of your brand.

Public Speaking: The Chili Con Queso Test –  Need a speaker? Sure… I’m your huckleberry! I’ll say anything to anyone about anything. Sign me up!! But some of the most seasoned pros have some angst about public speaking. While these six tips froGini Dietrich may be obvious, she packages them nicely in a great, mouth-watering article. This is one worth referring back to, again and again.

Six Week LinkedIn Lesson –  You’re checking people out, so you better assume that people are checking on you… get your personal brand together. I love this article and so will you.  Follow these steps and get your LinkedIn ship together.

All The Guides In One Place –  I may have a bit of a man crush on AWeberPeriodically, they will publish guides on various aspects of email marketing. They are excellent, containing great tips and tricks for many businesses. Here they are archived in one place… for free. If you do email marketing, this site is for you.

Keep learning, my friends… and now it’s back-to-school time. Summer, I barely got to know you…  JL





B-MUSINGS… Cool August Night Edition

13 08 2013

“B-Musings”… random blurbiage and ping pong balls rattling around my dome.  Why?  Because I can, and I have a blog!

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Beachin’ It – In a previous post, I mentioned my new found longing to be at the beach. It hasn’t waned. Fortunately I was able to get to the shore a couple of weeks ago and quench that thirst. My friends know that I am not one to stay at the beach for more than an hour… two tops. So the 10 hours over two days I spent sitting on the sand was a revelation. Granted, I was blessed with the right mix of great weather and great company… the perfect storm. It also came at the right time, in what has been a very hectic few months.

I’m going back next week, to plop my ass on that chair again. Can’t wait… I seem to be a poster boy for change lately, and I have to say I’m enjoying it.  Look out, fudgy wudgy man…

Culling the Facebook Herd – I like to go into my social media contacts periodically, and “unfriend” some people and places with whom I no longer interact. Recently I cleaned out a bunch of brands, bands, movies and other assorted “Likes”. Alas, I also jettisoned about 10 people who have thus far failed to enrich my social media experience. But as I was going through the exercise I came to four Facebook friends who are deceased. Obviously I was aware of them in my list, and each had very different levels of friendship for me. It’s nice that friends and family still drop comments on their pages for birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, etc.

So… those four will remain. Until I see them again.

The Soccer Supporter Mentality – I spend a decent amount of time explaining this concept to my non-soccer friends, so I thought I would throw it out for some comments. I fully expect Philadelphia Union striker and rising star Jack McInerney to be playing somewhere else next year, and I’m okay with it. If he moves to Europe, he will develop faster and better than in MLS. And that is good for U.S. Soccer, the priority.

Unlike any other sport, the true fan places country over club.  I think it is the best way to go, we support our national team first, then we have favorite domestic and/or overseas club teams… and we are rabid about all of them!!!  For me… USMNT, then Union, then Manchester United. The goal is always to fortify the national squad. Nuff said…

photo1Wedding of the Century – I often call Joe O’Hagan my faux cousin, when in fact he is my oldest and dearest friend. Our Moms were best friends growing up in Belfast, and travelled to America together on the Mayflower (well… that’s what they led us to believe).  So Joe, myself, his and my sisters grew up as cousins. He’s been a swinging bachelor for all these years until the fair Jennifer finally lassoed him to the ground. When I got news of their pending nuptials I expected an epic event, and was not disappointed.

It was a grand day, epic in its tradition and simplicity. I was honored to be asked to do a reading at the traditional Catholic ceremony, and I delivered it with my usual panache. The reception was held at the same classic venue that hosted my Senior Prom 35 years ago, and the place hasn’t changed one bit! The flashback feeling was aided by a great DJ who played Sinatra and other standards during dinner, and pulled out all the classic wedding reception dance hits… “Celebrate good times, come on!!” Joe’s nephew gave what might have been the greatest best man toast ever, and the newly married couple danced to an absolutely perfect song choice – the beautiful “At Last” by Etta James.

It truly was an epic event. All that was missing was a whiskey sour fountain and the garter / bouquet tossing, omitted I assume because of the groom – throwing anything is dangerous at his advanced age. But there were four other things missing… Joe and Marie, and Bunty and James. No doubt they would have been delighted that after a half century we are all still together.  Real family… no faux, mofo.

Good times, good people, good craic.

bemused-instructor

Meet Herb… Official “Face” of the B-Musing Blog Post.  Are you B-Mused now? A-Mused? Both?

Let me know by commenting below… Herb needs to know!!!





Glance Links – August 2013

8 08 2013

social-media-stats

Just some stuff that caught my eye recently, and might help you in your marketing efforts!  If you have any that you would like to pass on to me… hit me up!

CTA-Guide-CoverCall To Action Guide For EMail Marketing – Great stuff from the beautiful people at AWeber. Make your “call to action” eye-grabbing and attention-snatching, and position it perfectly… then sit back and watch the responses roll in!  PDF Download…

Social Media Image Sizing Cheat Sheet – Recent changes to Facebook pages, Twitter headers, YouTube channels and other social sites has made it difficult to get the size of your images just right. Bookmark this page, and the next time you’re about to post a picture or change your profile image, refer to this handy cheat sheet.

26 Social Stats From 2013 You Should Know –  I find myself explaining why social marketing is important to a business. I do this a lot. Here are some great, current tidbits to make your argument… or your next presentation!

3 Copywriting Mistakes Hurting Your Business (and How to Fix Them) – Make your website work harder by correcting these three common copywriting mistakes. If you are like me, writing doesn’t come without a certain amount of agita… so anything helps! This article will certainly correct some mistakes.

One more thing… does anyone else find it interesting that the word “copywriting” gets flagged in some SpellCheck programs?  Anyway… I hope these items are helpful!  Love to discuss…  JL