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.

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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!!!

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Social, My Way

19 05 2013

franksinatraI unabashedly love Social Media.  Not just for business, but my personal life too.  I’m so appreciative of rekindled relationships that I had thought were gone forever.  And that Social Media love is not unrequited, either.  Social loves me too.

And what’s not to love?  Social has made the already incredible world wide web that much more incredible.  It has torn down governments, companies, and people… most who actually deserved it.  Social reports news faster, and sometimes more accurately.

Social Media will continue to change and evolve as more platforms are created.  But it will always be about people sharing and conversing.  It is the greatest equalizer, giving everyone a voice in this mad world.  Good or bad, the people who use Social correctly will be the influencers in the years ahead.

One of my favorite sayings is, “There is a right way and a wrong way to do things.”  I believe this professionally, and personally.  No life lessons today, so you can relax.  Like everything, as Social evolves it must be done the right way.

Let the record show, this is My Way:

  • Be Positive!  I recently saw a post by my local soccer equipment store, linking to the article about the referee who was killed  during a match in Phoenix.  Yep… that’s a mistake.  Always provide content that reflects positively on your company and the industry you serve.  It’s simple, you get nothing from negative.
  • Engage!  Social Media is a giant conversation, so jump in.  Give your audience something to think about.  Your content should be such that your customer wants to respond.  Then you reply, and so on, and so on…  Ask questions and provide answers.    This will inspire trust and more engagement.
  • Don’t Hide!  No business does things 100% right.  Embrace any customers who push back at you, or attack you on SM.  Work to solve their problems publicly and show your commitment to getting things right.
  • Truth Rules!  Simply put, don’t lie.  Make sure you that what you say is correct.  Your customer is not just listening, but they are out there talking about your company, and probably to everyone but you.  They may not agree with what you put out there, but you will do a lot better if it is real and accurate.
  • Push The Envelope!  Don’t be afraid to get  little bit out of your comfort zone.  Be funny.  If you don’t think you are, find someone who can help you.  Don’t push it all the time, just enough to let your audience know that Robby the Robot isn’t creating your content.  So, link to that funny article or post that cartoon… it’s liberating!
  • Share!  Coming up with good content is tough, so don’t be afraid to share relevant content from other sources.  And if you want to really push that aforementioned envelope, share something from a competitor.  Shows confidence, don’t you think?  It will probably freak out your competitor a bit too.  Give them credit, of course…
  • Quality First!  Quantity second.  If you have something relevent to say or share, do it.  If not, keep quiet and listen to the conversation.  Posting for the sake of posting can dilute your message.  No yapping!

Looking at some of the key terms, it’s sort of “old school”… conversations, trust, talking, truth, quality, etc.  Nothing really new or earth shattering here.  Social… it’s new?  Nope, it’s old… and it’s all about people, people!

And I said there would be no life lessons…