Posts Tagged ‘seth godin’

Why Students Should Blog – Almost Winning A T-Shirt!

May 14, 2008

You might remember my “Why Students Should Blog” post in response to HackCollege’s contest. I finally caught up with episode 26 of the Hack College Podcast today by Chris and Kelly, and was thrilled to find that I made the final four to win a Hack College t-shirt!

The segment starts at about 18 minutes and I think the collection of answers are really good. I appear in the episode as a tweet. I know people go on about how social media and blogging and whatnot in North America doesn’t always apply here, but this one does.

In any case, I didn’t win that t-shirt, but dammit I’ll keep trying. Failing which I’ll just buy one for myself when I head up there later in the year. (But that’s not an excuse to not let me win, HackCollege!)

If you want to discover more, check out “The Case For Student Blogging” by HackCollege, I think it’s pretty good stuff. If you’ve been agonising over the perfect phrasing of your resume since forever, why not take a look at this and find a better way to supplement your case for future employment.

By the way, need more case studies on Blogging Yielding Fruit? Look no further than my Social Media Breakfast co-hoster Derrick Kwa who scored one with the one and only Seth Godin, as well as Corvida aka Shegeeks who scored one at ReadWriteWeb.

It’s happening people. Stop ignoring it.

Why Students Should Blog – A Few Pointers

May 2, 2008

Hack College posted an article on the Case for Student Blogging and @KellySutton posted the same question on Twitter as part as a competition to win a Hack College t-shirt. I’ve been wanting to write about this for some time, so it seems like a good time as any.

I’m going to write a few segments:

  • Whether you already have a blog
  • How it can get you an internship/job
  • My personal experience
  • Other intangible benefits
  • Whether blogging restricted just to people like me, ie those interested in social meda.

But I Already Have A Blog!
Actually, no, you probably don’t. Having a Meepok Blog (ie one where you talk about the meepok you had over lunch) is not a blog. It is a blog in that you’re capturing down your thoughts, but it’s not a blog where you’re adding value. And that’s the kind of blog you need to have if you’re in school, especially a university looking for an internship and/or employment.

Seriously? A Blog Helping Me Find A Job?
Yes. An article got featured in the New York Times about Christopher Penn’s (from Marketing Over Coffee) social media resume about the same time that Seth Godin questioned the need for a resume at all. ie: Your blog should speak for itself. Granted, we’re early days into this line of thinking, but if you’re just entering university now, a lot can change in the four years till you graduate and join the workforce. In fact, I just saw a social media internship today saying that including a blog and/or Twitter stream would be helpful.

My Personal Experience
I started this blog with no expectations except to contribute to the community. However through it I’ve gotten an invitation to advise a company on internal/external blogging, to be a panelist at a conference that costs $680 to attend and three internships. (Full disclosure: I couldn’t take up two of them, the third has yet to be confirmed). Ultimately it doesn’t matter whether or not it works out. The point here is: When was the last time you heard of offers coming your way just via a blog? No formal submission of resume, no cover letter? It’s a whole new world that frankly, surprised me as well.This can happen to you. But you have to start right now.

Other Intangible Benefits
As the world progresses, more and more of our lives are going to be lived online. Blogging/Tweeting/Podcasting etc creates and online presence and reputation for you. When your prospective employer Googles your name (and believe me, they will), you don’t want the first thing they see to be a story of you drunk at a club via your friend’s blog. You want them to see a thoughtful article you’ve written. Online reputation for your personal brand is priceless, and the difference between a good or bad one is how much effort you put in to develop it.

Another intangible that I’ve found particularly for me, is that it helps me write better and faster. I take an average of 20-30 mins to punch out a blog post. That translates to my school work where I’m writing papers and it takes me 45 minutes to get two pages out and send it for editing. Lightning fast.

Final point on intangibles, the great thing about everything being online is relationships. Whatever you blog about, the chances that someone will pick it up is always there, someone may be scanning Twitter for keywords that you mention in your blog, or simply Googling randomly or using StumbleUpon. Why not provide them an opportunity to connect to you?

But I Don’t Blog About Social Media!
It doesn’t matter. Your blog can be on anything. Drawings/sketches if you’re looking to be a creative in advertising. Commentary on the sub-prime crisis if you’re in finance. What changes in interest rates mean if you’re studying economics. Anything that you can point your future employer to and say “Look, I’ve been on top of this stuff for awhile now, and that makes me more valuable to hire than the other person who just submitted a resume with his grades.”

So what do you think? Are you reading this right now and thinking “Bullshit”, or are you thinking of what to name your blog? Let me know. If you’re thinking of starting a blog but you’re unsure of what to do/how to get about doing it, feel free to drop me a comment as well. I don’t claim to be an expert, but I’d like to help if I can.

Podcast Of The Month: March

April 11, 2008

This is late so I’m going to jump straight into it. My choice for the March podcast of the month goes to Six Pixels of Separation for the interview with Seth Godin in #93. I also listened to #94 – #97, and #97 is the episode where Mitch talks about Social Media Breakfast: Singapore, so you might want to check that out as well.

Other podcasts that I really think you should check out:

I really enjoyed listening to CC Chapman on Managing The Gray where he responded to Intellagirl’s challenge on how to get non-social media people into social media, as well as his coverage of SXSW.

With that said I also enjoyed Shill’s thoughts on SXSW coverage happening literally everywhere else, and how that feels from people not at the event. I really felt their point of view because I was one of those people getting bombarded non-stop on Twitter about SXSW. Probably something everyone will have to figure out for the next event.

Joseph Jaffe also weighed in on the SXSW coverage and Intellagirl’s challenge in Jaffe Juice #107 as well as facing outward from the fishbowl. An observation which I think is spot on.

Marketing Over Coffee was also good this month with an episode on what to do with your house list, two parts on the state of search and talking about the power of free.

Two new podcasts I picked up are For Immediate Release which comes out so frequently I can barely keep up but some good, thought provoking content in there, as well as Inside PR, whose discussion on ethics in PR to be very enlightening in #103 and #104

As always I am open to any and all suggestions for new podcasts to listen do. Just drop me a comment! While you’re at it, why not check out the podcast of the month for February and January as well?

Twitter 201: Part 3 – Best Twitter Apps & Advice

February 12, 2008

Here’s the final part of Twitter 201 which will cover the best applications for Twitter, as well as a few things I’d advise against on Twitter. If you missed earlier parts, here are the links to part 1 and part 2.

Best Apps For Twitter

1) Tweetscan – Allows you to search for specific things that people are Tweeting about. This is a favourite of mine and I’ve had a great experience where I was searching for “chinese new year”, found someone else’s blog, commented on it and a reader of that blog then came here and commented. Can’t recommend this enough

2) Snitter is an application you download to your desktop and it looks a little something like this:

Snitter

The benefit is simple: you don’t have to continually go to the Twitter website, but just update your Tweets from this instead. Your friends’ updates will be sent right to you as well. I’ve been using this for a few days and have found it to be fairly non-intrusive.

3) Twitter Cal helps with productivity and scheduling, which can be useful. I haven’t personally used this very often, but the perks are definitely there.

4) Facebook Application – search for this on Facebook, and anytime you update your Twitter status, your Facebook status gets updated at the same time. Pretty neat.

General Twitter Advice

Know who your audience is. This can make a difference between whether you Tweet yourself to remember the milk, or publicising something to friends.

Too much “noise”. Twitter your thoughts (Why I dislike Chinese New Year) vs actions (wondering which pair of socks to wear). Do keep in mind that Twitter also functions as an extension of your personal brand, and people will stop following you if you post too many frivolous Tweets.

Be aware of who you’re following. Best example of this – When Seth Godin isn’t Seth Godin.

Trivia

SianAh – Trust Singaporeans to come up with a Twitter clone for you to fill in what’s bothering you. Unfortunately, I think SianAh is gone now because I can’t access the website

That brings me to the end of the Twitter201 posts. I really hope you enjoyed it and most importantly, learned something that will help you use Twitter a little better. As always, feel free to comment if you have other uses/suggestions on Twitter below.

References:

Publishing 2.0 – Why I Stopped Using Twitter
Chris Brogan – Twitter Revisited
ProBlogger – 9 Benefits Of Twitter For Bloggers, Tips For Bloggers
Lifehack – Twitter: Use It Productively

Edit: There’s a new Twitter write-up on Makeuseof that just got posted which covers almost the same scope as this but with variants in the apps and with a section on word tracking. Worth a look!

Bookshelf For February

February 4, 2008

I picked up a couple of books at Borders over the weekend:

NewBooks
  • Quirkology by Richard Wiseman – been wanting to pick this up for a long time. Wiseman explores some interesting behaviors like why we wouldn’t think much of a $15 discount on a $20 item, but might do so for a $15 discount for a $90 item, even though the absolute value is identical
  • Starbucked by Taylor Clark – supposed to be a good read.
  • Wicked by Gregory Maguire – didn’t get to watch the Broadway show in New York, so I’ll make do with the next best thing
  • Purple Cow by Seth Godin – I’ve read numerous things by Seth, Meatball Sundae, Small Is The New Big, All Marketers Are Liars, but it’s time for the book that started it all, centered around a simple premise: Be Remarkable.

I’ve also started on The Long Tail by Chris Anderson. This has been on my shelf for a long time, about time I got started on it.

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Meatball Sundae Trends 1 and 3

January 22, 2008

I blogged just about a week ago about starting Meatball Sundae, unfortunately I got too bogged down with deadlines to read more, until tonight. Two trends struck me:

Trend #1: Direct communication and commerce between producers and consumers

Here Seth Godin talks about why permission is not up to you (the marketer), my favourite points:

  1. Permissions exists to help me, the moment the messages sent aren’t personal or relevant, you cease to exist in my world
  2. I don’t care about you. Not really, I care about me. If your message has something to do with my life, then perhaps I’ll notice, but in general, don’t expect much
  3. I demand your respect. I can get respect from plenty of organisations, so if you disrespect me (by mistreating me, by breaking your promise, by cheating or lying or by undervaluiing our relationship), then sure, that’s right, you’re history.

I’d say those are the reasons why various feeds are in my Google Reader, and I allow mails from Men’s Health, Amazon, Last.fm, Facebook and the like to get to me, and almost every other email from clubs are automatically thrown into the spam box. (By the way, Google’s spam algorithm is amazing. I don’t even know why the clubs bother)

Trend #3: Need for an authentic story as the numbers of sources increases

Basically his point here is that whatever your company stands for should be conveyed by everyone, all the time, consistently. This reminded me of one nasty experience at Starbucks, where this staff went around telling anyone who looked like a student “Sorry, no studying in here” even before they sat down. I emailed this in and got a response of remorse, typical politically correct response.

The point here is that it doesn’t matter if Howard Schultz comes out and says that the Starbucks experience is commoditised, or that he intends to return it to its roots. As long as that isn’t believed, communicated and executed on by every single touchpoint in the company, it fails.

On a minor note, Seth also mentions John Moore over at Brand Autopsy as someone worth reading, and it humbles me that John took the time to reply to one of my posts that referenced him. After all, an SMU student probably doesn’t compare much to the people he rubs shoulders with!

Meatball Manifesto

January 17, 2008

If you’re unwilling to plonk down $30+ for Meatball Sundae, there’s a new manifesto on ChangeThis which will probably act as a pretty good executive summary for you. Also, there’s news on how to get your very own Seth Godin action figure (!!).

Can Google Be Your Friend If It’s Banned?

January 15, 2008

Search Engine Journal, a site I started reading regularly when doing my Google research, posts an interesting article about a Professor in Brighton that has banned Google in favour of traditional research like hardcopy journals. She says “Google is filling, but it does not necessarily offer nutritional content.”

This actually echoes something posted by Seth Godin in October, called The Wikipedia Gap, reacting to a similar incident where Wikipedia was apparently banned in research.

Note that in Godin’s post, he doesn’t claim that Wikipedia is a credible source of information (indeed, I’d never use that as a formal annotation), but it does provide good groundwork for knowing and appreciating the subject, before heading off to “serious” research.

I do wonder what would happen if this came to SMU.

First Book Of The Year

January 14, 2008

I finished Game Of Thrones, but before starting on the next book, I’ve decided to pick up Meatball Sundae instead.

Meatball Sunday, is Seth Godin’s new book (What? So soon after The Dip?), comparing Old Marketing (Meatballs) as one flavour, and New Marketing as the other (the Sundae toppings). What’s important in the book is probably the 14 New Marketing trends that he’s observed and comments on. I’m only at chapter one, but if you’re curious, Brand Autopsy has more.


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