The Funniest Podcast About Social Media
That Helps You Grow Your Business

Customer Service via Social Media, with Peter Shankman – Ep.7

It’s been determined that good social media can’t make a bad company better, no matter how hard you try. Today your hosts Chris and David tap the enthusiasm and knowledge of the show’s special guest Peter Shankman to help make social media (especially in terms of customer service) more understandable, more useful, and more fun.

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Peter Shankman, founder of the PR, Social Media, and Marketing Strategy firm The Geek Factory, Inc. and writer behind the blog http://shankman.com/ is also a public speaker, entrepreneur, and author. He has written three books: Nice Companies Finish First, Customer Service, and Can We Do That?!  He is an international and national traveler with stories, experience, and tons of talent.

You’ve probably heard of Peter because of HARO – Help A Reporter Out – a database that allows reporters to find sources and experts to find reporters. He founded and ran the site until it was acquired by Vocus, Inc. In doing this, along with the rest of his acquired knowledge, he learned an important thing about business – it pays to be nice. He did some research and found that when you are even somewhat nice, it is shown that there are 40% product increases. Nice businesses makes loyal people.

This lead to his new book, published early 2013, Nice Companies Finish First: Why Cutthroat Management is Over and Collaboration Is In. The book explains that the “authoritarian cowboy CEO era is over,” or in other words, Machiavelli’s famous thought that it is better to be feared than loved, is just a little outdated.

The discussion of this knowledge on the show lead to David’s assertation that many business people are reportedly sociopaths, but after some analytical chatting with Peter in the self-professed ADHD-fest of an episode, any listener can tell that Peter really wants to help. In fact, since he sold HARO, he’s been consulting with the goal of proving how companies around the world are reinventing customer service.

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Peter professes that although he loves social media, he believes that too many businesses are sacrificing customer service in order to use social media. “Social media doesn’t need its own special week, it needs a good swift kick in the ass;” he stated that nothing new can replace common sense or good quality service, and many businesses are now toying with social media based customer service instead of truly fixing problems.

(A fun fact to show that Peter practices what he preaches – see his Top 10 Tweet of 2011 about being met at the airport with a steak from his favorite restaurant, now that’s service!) http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-501465_162-20096527-501465.html

As the episode progressed, the hosts and Peter started to discuss new occurrences and issues in the social media world. Cars can allegedly tweet through your GPS to let people know where you are, and apparently is it now possible for a car to tweet to you that it needs an oil change or gas. As the new Graph Search (a more intensive search on past “likes,”) on Facebook comes about, we realize that any type of privacy died 30 years ago.

This creates a sense of catch 22; to use social media and lose your privacy, or to not use social media and not get ahead in business in this world. Additionally, technology makes us weaker and stronger at the same time – it does our work for us while we are still expected to do things ourselves. However, some lack of privacy is helpful, especially when it comes to revenue. A company that Peter has invested in is called Knod.es, which is up and coming in the fundraising world. The program looks at social media “likes” of the people one interacts with and registers any data they create in a way that will be helpful to an investor. It is using small data information in a smart, intelligent way.

Peter believes that the concepts of “like-ing, fan-ing, friend-ing” are going away. Instead, our relationships will be “seen” by our social media and make updates to our accounts based on the information it gathers about where we are, who we are interacting with, and what we are doing.

But, as David counters, what about narcissism? People will still be friending each other and liking what they choose for an aspect of control. This contributes to the blatant misuse of Facebook. However, due to the diagnosed FOMO, or Fear of Missing Out, everyone wants to be on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest. Because of this, social media accounts are being used incorrectly, even if one has a good business.

However, we can probably all agree that in time, many of the negative “wrinkles” in social media will get ironed-out. And Peter Shankman definitely contributes to that positive evolution. Thanks Peter!

~ Naomi Barnett | July 9th, 2013

 

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Increased Twitter Engagement with Dorien Morin-van Dam – Ep.2

Are you tweeting, or are you merely chirping? What are the best ways to attract Twitter followers, make your Twitter useful, and manage your feed?

In this week’s episode of Social Media Unscrambled, hosts Chris Curran and David Deutsch are joined by the intelligent and talented Dorien Morin-van Dam to discover some tips for using the microblogging platform Twitter, including Lists, Hashtags and more.

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One of Dorien’s recent popular posts is called “11 S(t)weet Tips for Increased Twitter Engagement,” and focuses on the aspect of interacting with followers. This knowledge attracted the team of Chris Curran of Fractal Recording and David Deutsch of Synergi Social to invite Dorien to Skype into their podcast, Social Media Unscrambled, which airs weekly on The Fractal Stream internet radio station on Tuesday afternoons at 1:30PM EST. Social Media Unscrambled takes Curran’s broadcasting knowledge and Deutsch’s profession of social media in order to create an interactive experience for listeners who are interested in utilizing social media in the most efficient way possible.

In the previous episode, Chris and David spoke about the benefits of Google+ and sited various social networking bloggers. In this episode, they were able to host Dorien Morin van-Dam, who brought a different voice and feel to the show, in addition to her knowledge.

Dorien Morin van-Dam is a social networking consultant who uses her own experience in order to assist friends, clients, and businesses in proper and efficient social media strategies. Since 2010, she has been the founder and moderator of MoreInMedia.com, in which she blogs and creates workshops involving social media. She focuses primarily on twitter and LinkedIn, since they are the two most commonly misused and misunderstood platforms.

Dorien currently lives and works in South Carolina, and when she started speaking on the show, the hosts were surprised to hear no Southern accent. She related her roots from the Netherlands and her move to Boston, where she met her husband and lost her accent. After the friendly jabber that makes their show enjoyable and unique, David, Chris, and Dorien started talking about the first of the eleven tips on Dorien’s twitter post.

The first tip reads, “Twitter announced an update to their lists –>You can now make up to 1,000 lists (up from 20), and each list can include up to 5,000 accounts (up from 500). Can we say ‘wow’?! If you are NOT using lists yet, get to it. We use Twitter lists for curation purposes and improved interaction!” Dorien and David focused on explaining the useful aspect of twitter list. A twitter list allows the user to group the twitters they follow into certain categories, and then when they wish to find a post or idea, they are easily able to track who it might come from, rather than scrolling through an entire feed with thousands of tweets. Business owners and those who choose to connect using social media have a tendency to have many followers and follow many others, and scrolling through an entire list of tweets can be daunting and time consuming. Users can place bloggers on many lists, and due to the new update on Twitter, lists can be even more utilized.

A few listeners wanted to know how lists were made and if they were truly manageable. Lists are made manually by the user, and are as manageable as the creator allows them to be. Lists can be either public or private, and therefore can be utilized by other twitter bloggers. Dorien explained that the most useful feature of lists is to see what is popular and being talked about by various groups.

After a lengthy discussion, the hosts move on to the second point on Dorien’s list, which is, in short, politeness on twitter. “Thank those who tweet out your content, whether it’s a re-tweet or your blog posts. Acknowledgment can lead to great conversations and those can lead to meaningful connections.” Showing a follower that you appreciate them can start a lasting relationship which will make great business connections and partnerships in the future. And it’s as easy as typing “thank you,” or an original variation of that.

The third bullet that was discussed on the show had to do with the hashtag. The hosts explained what a hashtag was and its usefulness for the twitter user. “Twitter chats are a fun way to make new connections on Twitter. A chat happens when a group of people tweet about the same topic using a hashtag (#). The chats are at a specific predetermined time and often repeat weekly (or bi-weekly).” While a hashtag can be very useful, the hosts of #smUnscrambled did not have enough time in the half hour show to expand upon it.

The show is growing, after only two episodes, in a way that exceeds the boundaries of a half hour, and the limits of any one social media topic. As the show draws to a close, Chris and David mention their plans for the founder of Triberr to speak in person on the show in a couple weeks, as well as their excitement for its future. They thank Dorien for speaking about her post and for sharing her useful social media knowledge – even if it was only 3 of her 11 useful tips. The only thing left to do is to go tweet about it!

The rest of Dorien’s post can be found at http://moreinmedia.com/11-stweet-tips-increased-twitter-engagement/ on her website.
Her Google+ site is bit.ly/MoreInMedia
and you can tweet her at @MoreInMedia.

Tune in next week at 1:30PM EST for the next Social Media Unscrambled and follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

—Post written by Naomi Barnett, June 4th 2013

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