As the year draws to a close, I feel the need to take a moment to express gratitude for the new people I’ve met, new opportunities presented to me, new lessons learned and new ideas I’m looking forward to exploring in 2010 and beyond. Here are a few highlights…
I’ll start with yesterday, December 30th. Steve Dalton, Dave Woodson, Aaaron Simac and I headed down to Indianapolis to attend Indiana’s Inaugural Social Media Summit Smackdown Awards Ceremony, organized by Indianapolis’ Amy Stark, a force to be reckoned with and a heck of a nice lady to boot! Steve, Dave and I had all been nominated–as well as several others from Northwest Indiana who were unable to attend: Nat Finn,Rahsaan Taylor, Laurie Griffith and Nichole. Some of us knew one another before this year, but most have met because of social media, particularly because of Northwest Indiana Tweetup. We each have different strengths and each has been generous about sharing information with one another. Making our way down to Indy, none of us knew the voting results–we were attending to support the event, but hoping to bring back a trophy for Northwest Indiana. I’m sad to report that we didn’t win in the Social Media Dude category, though Dave Woodson, Steve Dalton and Rahsaan Taylor are all winners in my book! Up and Comers Nat Finn and Laurie Griffith did well in the polls, but didn’t get a trophy either. They both deserve trophies for what they have accomplished in social media this year, but hopefully will settle for a celebratory beverage from me. The good news? I was lucky enough to claim the Social Media Most Influential Dame title. I’ll cherish the trophy, but won’t get too attached…
I feel one reason I was able to win the vote this year is because I have spent much of my time in front of large groups of people, teaching them about the basics of social media and teaching them how to use tools like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter in their business. It has been a richly rewarding experience and I have thoroughly enjoyed teaching what I have learned. However, because my speaking schedule was so busy, I didn’t make adequate time to do things like blogging, updating my Twitter status as much as I should, learning about new and emerging technologies, etc.
Luckily, my social media friends are helping me out with this… Dave Woodson and Nat Finn made a brief guest appearance at my last Social Media Bootcamp in Merrillville. They presenting more indepth information about blogging and SEO than I usually include. The information was well received and now we are making plans to develop new curricula that will include these important aspects to business marketing. Look for upcoming workshop from Nat and I; dates to be posted soon. Nat is a inbound marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) specialist with over 4 years experience. He can tell you just about anything you’d want to know about Google Analytics–and then some! He’s a sharp guy, and I’m looking forward to collaborating with him. His metaphysical musings and personal insights make what might otherwise be a dry topic pretty darn entertaining. This Renaissance Man is also busy writing a book on blues–hopefully we’ll see it published within the year?
My friend and past student Ursula Saqui of Saqui Research suggested (months ago!) to me that we form a blog accountability pact, reminding each other to blog regularly. She reminded me, but I fell down… I’m now trying out her idea with a group I am excited to be working with and will tell you more about over the coming months.
Thanks for all the support you have shown for the business I started this year. I feel blessed to be able to do work I love and have the opportunity to meet fascinating people from around our Region.
Have a safe and happy 2010!