As a break with tradition, todays blog was written by the very talented Eileen MacCallum (www.aweebirdie.com).
Last week I really joined the conversation. That's to say I went along to one of the workshops run by social media guru Alicia Cowan (http://www.aliciacowan.com/) and equally clued-up designer Keren Lerner from Top Left Design (www.topleftdesign.com).
The day-long seminar aimed to demystify the main social media channels for the common business bod. So folk from all walks of work followed the cheery Muppet-themed (we know, that's why we're here) directions down to the comfy basement of a North London office.
Both prolific tweeters and bloggers, Keren and Alicia talked us knowledgeably through LinkedIn, Twitter, blogging and You Tube (no Facebook due to time constraints), rounding up with a bite-size guide to planning your social media strategy.
Along the way they shared a ton of practical tips, best practices, information sources and tools to make joining the big social media conversation that bit simpler.
Attendees ranged from complete novices to recent enthusiasts. When someone asked, "What is SEO?" they got a relaxed, jargon-free explanation. Another had concerns about how best to manage the degree of personal exposure regular social media interaction can involve. (Solution: dive in but always keep your business goals in mind.) Worries about time-munching Twitter habits were countered with advice on planning and tools, from Buffer (http://bufferapp.com/) to Listorious (http://listorious.com/).
I've had my toe in the social media sea for a wee while now and am keen to improve my online marketing. What I gained was a fuller understanding of each platform's role, plus plenty of practical advice to help me manage it all more effectively.
The volume of information was perhaps bamboozling for the beginner - I did see some eyes go a bit fruit-machine by the end of the day - but regular breaks for energy-boosting cupcakes and some light networking helped ease the pace.
As most of us know, social media is all about sharing. Over this informal fact-packed day Alicia and Keren shared all the stuff they know, to help us share the stuff we know, and I for one left feeling all fired up to chat. #timeandmoneywellspent