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My Periscope Heart Is In San Francisco: Summit Live 2016

My Periscope Heart Is In San Francisco: Summit Live 2016

I have a hunger to learn, a real, deep hunger.

I have a desire to meet people who like to create.

I enjoy surrounding myself with people who share brilliance in their diversity.

I enjoy the company of people who like to see others succeed.

I work in the world of social media and I am always looking at unique ways to communicate and build relationships with potential collaborators and clients.

For these reasons alone, I flew to San Francisco to attend Summit Live 2016 and let me tell you this, I was not disappointed.

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First of all, let’s go back 7 months…

To give a little bit of context first, I switched on an app called Periscope about 7 months ago and it changed everything. It opened my eyes up to creators, to thinkers, to doers, to achievers, to savvy business owners, to people looking to create opportunities, to people not afraid to take risks, to people who were not afraid to share their voices and their stories, to people who wanted to collaborate not compete, to people who wanted to listen to others, all of this, through an app? WOW! It had me captivated in the first couple of days of using it.

Running a social media business, where education and looking out for opportunity for clients is high on the priority list, I HAD to understand more about Periscope, I WANTED to understand more about Periscope and what I learned, very early on, is no matter what business you are in, be that a small local business, or a huge global brand, that authenticity, community and relationships matter. No matter what product or what service you offer, without those 3 key elements you might as well be a faceless business blasting brand messages and sales pitches at people.

Social Media, as I had known it, had changed. No longer was it a Facebook post or a series of tweets, no longer was it an Instagram post or a Pinterest pin. Don’t get me wrong … all of these elements are still crucial to a social media strategy but Periscope had a power like nothing else I had seen before. We now had an opportunity to connect on a far deeper and more meaningful level than before. We now had the opportunity to see the passion behind people’s eyes as they talked to us through the screens of their phones. We now had access to learn about others and also allow others to learn about us. I quickly saw how Periscope could be and incredible place for people, business owners and creatives  all over the globe, to develop relationships at a much faster rate than through any other social media platform I had previously experienced.

So off I went to New York …

The first Periscope Summit in New York was an experience I will never forget. I met, without question, the most passionate, inspiring people I had ever met in my life. I listened to amazing stories, saw how people were using Periscope to revolutionise their lives and felt an overwhelming sense of community. The relationships that were developed were incredible, so when  Summit Live San Francisco was announced, wild horses were not going to keep me away!

Summit Live 2016: San Francisco …

Enter an OUTSTANDING event which brought the Periscope community even closer.

When it comes to events, the Summit Live team sure know how to organise something special. This event was cram-packed full of awe-inspiring keynote speakers, educational and amazing panels, day activities, night activities and a great venue!

The thing that stands out above all of this though, is how they encourage and bring out the best in every member of the community. They include everyone. Good people bring out the good in people, the Summit Live team did this in every area of the event that they organised.

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My three main takeaways from Summit Live (second time around) were this….

1.Having watched Shawn Thomas deliver his inspiring keynote, there was a sentence that has remained in my mind: ‘There is no person in this room that knows what it is like to live tomorrow’. This couldn’t be more true. What this made me think about and learn was how, as a social media business owner, the role is changing every single day. It’s true that there is no-one who knows what it is like to live tomorrow. Perhaps we may not all be lucky enough to live tomorrow, but today, I/we/you can make an impact and a difference. My focus since returning home has been to really encourage business owners to jump on board Periscope, because what we do today is all we have. There are many barriers that some face when it comes to broadcasting and sharing their stories live to the world. Understanding those barriers and helping business owners and creatives to overcome those barriers, has been and will remain a focus as a social marketer. Education and understanding is what is needed in order to help people to achieve their potential. We are no longer only social marketers, we are social educators and encouragers.

2.The hierarchy of influence on Periscope has changed. Over the past 7 months, Periscope has given a voice and a place for undiscovered people all over the world to share their story and message. This time, there seemed to be a much more level playing field where I was now seeing influencers, creatives and business owners come together as one, no matter what their experience. There was more of a mutual appreciation. The support from influencers, to help and see others succeed, was actually quite overwhelming. There was a real sense and vibe that they too, have learned from people like you and I and that they want to support and elevate others. (For any business owners or creatives reading this, please start broadcasting. Periscope is a place where everyone has a story to tell, value to provide and a place to grow communities and relationships. No-one has more or less value than anyone else and everyone has something that will be valuable to someone, somewhere.)

3.Periscope has huge potential for business owners and creatives as part of a wider social strategy. Periscope provides business owners with an opportunity, like never before, to connect at a completely different level to more traditional methods of social media marketing. The key though, is not to treat it like other platforms. Periscope is raw, real and unfiltered and this is how it’s such a beautiful place for connecting. If you are about to hit ‘start broadcast’ and start selling your product, STOP and think! Focus on people, provide value to people, build relationships with people. If business is going to follow, it will, naturally. I have had many people come to me and say they are going to get rid of the rest of their social media strategy and focus solely on Periscope. Not a wise move, in my opinion. Businesses and creatives that will benefit from using this platform well, are those that integrate and bridge communities between all of their social channels. Periscope is the heartbeat of the whole body of social media, the component that sets the rest of the social media soul on fire.

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Opportunity is out there …

Summit Live provided me with an opportunity to speak internationally for the first time in my life. Whilst I have spoken at UK based events and in schools, there was nothing quite like sharing the stage with such passionate, enthusiastic business owners! We had some fantastic discussions, shared our ideas and listened to each others views, the latter, something I believe to be crucial on Periscope, listening to understand. 7 months ago I would never have dreamed that I would be speaking at a Summit of this scale, so thank you to the Summit Live team for allowing me to share my thoughts and ideas with the community! To anyone wondering what opportunity Periscope presents as a platform, you never know where it may take you!

If you would like to see the panel discussions you can find them here:

Small Business Success Strategies

Gaining Targeted Followers

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People Make Periscope Magic… 

I cannot begin to mention, every amazing person that I met, adore and have massive respect for on Periscope, I would be here for a very long time, but I want to mention, a few people who impact my life every day,  and I urge anyone reading this to go and follow these guys everywhere!

Sarah Moore – Owner of Eleven Lights Media and my social media sister from the other side of the world in Australia. Sarah is super smart and inspires me every day! I could not have wished to have shared the Summit Live experience with anyone else in the same way as Sarah and I did. We work in the same business field, thousands of miles separate us, but Periscope has brought us into the same place where our passions lie. We share ideas and strategies and have a very special friendship. For Sarah’s friendship alone, I thank Periscope!

Brian Fanzo – Huge respect for a guy with a huge heart. Brian lifts others, appreciates others and more importantly helps and encourages people to see the best in themselves. Many of you will know Brian as a social influencer, which of course he is, BIG TIME! But to me, he is someone that exemplifies what community is about. He want’s to see others succeed and this is echoed through everything he does. Brian MC’d the whole summit event in San Francisco. It was great to see him in this environment as I had previously seen Brian keynote. On both occasions he wowed the community.

The Funky Fairy – Rob and Vicki. Two incredibly smart, engaging and welcoming people who exemplify how authenticity, through live streaming, works for business. Rob and Vicki are about people! The fact they have an outstanding product, to me, is a bi-product of who they are as people. For any business owners reading this, go and take a look at how it’s done. These guys make everything personal, relationships matter to them! I was incredibly touched that they sent me some personalised bling clothing to wear at the summit. They show they care every single day. It was fantastic to spend time with Mr Funky Fairy out in San Francisco and I can truly call them both friends!

Ryan Bell – Founder of Summit Live and the reason why all of us have been able to meet people that share passion, determination, the desire to succeed and help others. I actually think Ryan is a very humble person who plays down his ability as a connector of people. Ryan is a special individual who’s inclusion and understanding of people is amazing! At this Summit, we got to meet his beautiful family too, his lovely wife and two rather lovely tiny little people!

Jennifer Quinn– This lady is beautiful, inside and out! I’m very proud to be able to call her a friend. Host of The Daily Q Show and an avid supporter of others in the Periscope world! Jenny stands out in the way she lifts others around her. It was a pleasure to spend time with her for the second time at Summit Live and I highly recommend you follow Jenny.

Jana Francis– Super smart, super savvy, business entrepreneur is how I would describe Jana. She is founder of Steals.com, but to me, Jana is more than this. She is witty, intelligent and uses Periscope to connect people with both her business and behind the scenes life! Jana is all about people, supporting people whilst growing her empire all at the same time! I was lucky to be on a panel with Jana twice at the summit. She has a big heart and a wealth of knowledge when it comes to Periscope!

Eric Neitzel– A great friend of mine who is just a outstanding human through and through! Eric is smart, friendly and I often tune into his scopes on his travels on the road. I’ve been lucky to meet Eric twice and always find him so encouraging of others around him. He is a must follow for anyone on Periscope. He’s a top engager and an avid supporter of the community!

(A little of the friendship fun, blingy clothes from The Funky Fairy) then more great people to follow below!)…..

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Frameable Faces– Ally and Doug, husband and wife duo! These guys just GET Periscope! They have an amazing photography business, but first and foremost, they are two incredibly lovely people who engage with every member of their Periscope community! Their scopes are always a joy to watch because they are all about building relationships. Being on a panel with these guys was an experience I won’t forget. They are not only friends but, I learned a lot from them and you can too!

John Kapos– AKA Mr Chocolate Johnny himself! I had watched Johnny for months on Periscope before meeting and joining a panel with him in San Fransisco! What is so great about Johnny is how he takes people into the heart of his business. He shows people behind the scenes and humour is always something you can expect to see in his scopes! He has a huge heart and has built a loyal community of people that he encourages to succeed and achieve,

Alexis Cardoza– Director of Start Broadcast, a wonderful human being and someone who supports everyone within his Periscope community. The Start Broadcast project has been fascinating to follow. It is a documentary about the Periscope live streaming community! Alexis is a must follow in the Periscope world. His kindness and compassion for others is something that has always stood out about him.

Mitch Jackson– America’s Live Streaming Lawyer. It was my second time of meeting Mitch and my love and appreciation for Mitch and what he does grew more! Mitch runs a very successful law firm and takes his community behind the scenes providing business learning advice, tips and ideas. He is a supporter of many and a true relationship builder. Primarily though, Mitch is a people person, you cannot help but feel completely comfortable and supported in Mitch’s’ presence.

Joel Comm– It was my first time meeting Joel in San Francisco. His keynote 100% delivered. Joel is all about ‘Do Good Stuff’ and he exemplifies this through everything he does. Joel is a best-selling New York Times author, has decades of experience in the marketing industry yet he sees value in and appreciates and supports every single person! I’m a big Joel fan. He wowed me in his approach as to how he treats people. He is top guy all about building and growing relationships.

Chris Strub– The first guy to stream live from all states across America! Chris is all about Social Good and has worked alongside many non-profit organisations throughout America. Chris is a supporter to many and someone who shares his story with great authenticity on Periscope, plus, he’s generally just a very nice person.

Alex Pettitt– Alex is known to many for sharing tips and tricks about Periscope! Over the past few months Alex’s scopes have provided diversity by seeing areas of his life that we have not seen before. He speaks kindly of people, supports many and is happy to help people however he can. He has built and grown a strong community of supporters through growing relationships during his scopes. He is a great guy doing great things.

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So, Summit Live was everything I expected it to be and more. Thank you to all of the team at Summit Live, for those reading, you can check out the whole team behind the magic here. Friendships and relationships were strengthened in San Francisco, communities became closer, my hunger to learn and understand from others, was more than satisfied. I shared experiences with a group of people who I could not respect and love more. I see huge potential for businesses and creatives no matter who you are and where you are. I wan’t to hear your story, others want to hear your story.

So now the hard work begins to help business owners, who may be nervous to start broadcasting, actually start broadcasting. The more people we can get using this platform, the better and if Summit live epitomises one single thing it is this: What we can do for others is what life is about and far greater than anything we can do for ourselves. For anyone struggling to hit start broadcast, reach out to me , or any other of the fantastic community members who are always happy to help and encourage you!

If every single Periscope user can encourage and help just one person to jump on board then that’s a great job done. I hope to see the community double, triple, quadruple and so on during 2016 and I hope to see you all at Summit Live 2017, tickets are available now! … I’ll be buying my ticket! that’s for sure!

 

Let’s Be REAL: We Need To Bridge That Gap On Social Media In 2016!

Let’s Be REAL: We Need To Bridge That Gap On Social Media In 2016!

HAPPY NEW YEAR FOLKS!

So, you’ve seen countless blogs and listened to numerous podcasts over the past few days all talking about marketing predictions for 2016. I guess it’s time to add my ten penneth to the mix!

So here we go …

Over the past few months live stream has brought real time, face to face, raw and authentic people onto our phone screens like we have never seen before. We have become social media. We are no longer a person behind a post or a CMO behind a tweet. We are the face, the voice, the person behind our brands and businesses, laid bare for all to see. The rise in the popularity of Snapchat further demonstrates the desire that consumers have to view people, business owners, CEO’s, Marketing Managers (the list goes on) in the most raw and authentic environment possible. Authenticity has become a social currency and people are flocking in abundance with real desire to ‘consume’ us as real, raw individuals.

For those of us in the social media world, the marketing world, the big data world, the web world, the social media savvy small business owners who have quickly adapted and taken on board that this is EXACTLY where social media is going, it is second knowledge, well first knowledge in fact, that telling our stories, authenticity, real time engagement and relationship building will be the foundation of many successes across social media platforms. There are small business owners who are smashing it on social media, with HUGE success!

Now, for a moment, lets contrast that with this reality:

There are numerous business owners, CEO’s and HR departments who repeatedly quote the same stance….

‘I’m not sure I need social media’

‘I’ve got a Facebook page but I can’t remember the last time I logged in’

‘I set up Twitter a year ago but I don’t really like it’

‘I have an advert in the Yellow Pages, a website and a blog, what can social media do for me?’

‘What is Instagram and how can sharing pictures help my business?’

‘I don’t have the time to focus my efforts on social media’

Let’s be completely transparent here. If the above sounds like you, you are BEHIND, but YOU ARE NOT ALONE (As I will continue to explain)

There is no question about it. Social media is moving at such a quick pace, that those who are only just getting to grips with Facebook and Twitter, have a lot of catching up to do.

DO NOT WORRY! Education, training and guidance, support and understanding is needed for a substantial number of small business owners.

For those of us who work in the industry, who are repeatedly seeing new Apps and platforms pop up on a weekly basis, it is moving incredibly fast for us, so it is no surprise whatsoever that it is overwhelming for anyone who is trying to run their own business, be their own accountant, manage their own clients, juggle personal life commitments, children, school runs, holidays and everything else that goes into the mix of day-to-day life. YOU ARE NOT ALONE, In fact you are in the majority, there are millions upon millions of people out there that share exactly the same view that social media is not easy.

The gap has become wider than ever before, when it comes to the pace and development of social media and the understanding of small business owners, who, are extremely successful at what they do, but lack the knowledge and understanding of how best to utilise even the most fundamental social media platforms.

Then it comes to live streaming, platforms like Snapchat and video marketing. Let’s forget for a moment, the ‘top tips’ to become awesome at all of these platforms (which I really enjoy by the way). Let’s strip it back even further than that, further back than strategy, further back than hitting the ‘start broadcast’ button, further back than recording a video Snapchat to share our story for the day. Let’s take it right back to reality. There are millions of you out there, who are successful business owners, fantastic at what you do, yet, you may lack the confidence to go on camera. In fact, I have heard from many business owners I speak to, that it frightens the life out of you to even think about going on camera. Again, take comfort in this, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

I think it’s important to highlight that YOU ARE NOT ALONE because the gap that currently exists needs to be bridged somehow. The gap exists between assuming that everyone is ready for Periscope, or ready for Snapchat or ready to video blog daily …. and then the reality, that for many, these platforms are not something they have even heard of or thought about yet! Education/training, support and understanding is needed, because the opportunity of of using these platforms, for business owners, is immense! As marketers, we need to take it back even further than delivering top tips and content that marketing professionals and very media savvy business owners understand, and be completely able to relate with business owners who would really like a greater understanding of how best to use social media for them personally, without the jargon.

How  can we help you to overcome any fears that may be stopping you from fulfilling your potential? As social media managers and strategists we have a responsibility to you, not to blanket approach your business with the rest, not to assume that you understand exactly what we mean when we are talking industry jargon but to really understand what matters to you and to advise and educate and help you to be the best you can be and to be comfortable doing it.

So, my prediciton for 2016 is that the gap will widen further as social media continues to develop and business owners become more overwhelmed that they cannot keep up with the fast pace at which it is moving. I believe that the role of the ‘social media manager, strategist, consultant’ is more relevant and prominent than ever before. The role may be changing slightly as emphasis moves to education/training, support and encouragement so that business owners feel the confidence, understanding and desire to be their best possible selves on social media. We have a duty to help you make this the year that social media becomes more manageable, understandable and not quite so overwhelming as it may seem right now!

 

Happy New Year Business Owners, Employers, Employees….. Here’s To A Very Successful Year For All.

 

 

A Live Streaming Mindset For Business In 2016

A Live Streaming Mindset For Business In 2016

There’s no question about it, social media can be incredibly overwhelming.

Even working within the industry, it is constantly changing, evolving and moving at such a fast pace that once you feel you have got to grips with one element, it changes and you have to learn something new again.

News Flash! It is not going to slow down any time soon, so as small business owners, how can you prepare yourselves for 2016 when the pace is going to quicken even more?

It may not be perfect , but that’s OK, so long as you are fast

Gone are the days where perfectly crafted information is top of the agenda. With the huge surge in popularity of live streaming through Apps such as Periscope and Blab during 2015, content is readily available, live, at the touch of a button, in an instant. Facebook is in the process of rolling out Facebook Live to the masses and 2016 will only see the popularity of live streaming platforms grow even more. The raw, unfiltered authenticity and speed at which content is now consumed is only going to grow. It’s time to drop perfection and hit the ‘go live’ button.

What does this mean for you as a small business owner?…

Well, I’m certainly not suggesting you throw away the professionally crafted You Tube video’s just yet. But, consider this, within a matter of seconds, you can start a live broadcast and people will consume your content there and then, in real time, within seconds.  For you, as a business owner, there is a very immediate and engaging space to be able to connect daily with your potential customers. This is powerful, in fact hugely powerful for you as a small business. You can make very impactful and meaningful connections through live streaming. Being able to authentically tell your story gives meaning to who you are and more importantly, who you are to your potential customers.

It’s the who, not the what that is becoming more and more important…

Marketing is no longer about the stuff you make, but about the stories you tellSeth Godin

The sooner you can understand the difference between the ‘what’ and the ‘who’ the sooner you will be successful with live streaming. For years , we have been used to brands and business owners talking about ‘what’ they can do for you with their services, what the ‘brand message’ is all about. The truth is, that irrespective of what your business can offer your consumer, if they are unable to identify with you as a person and feel connected with you, then the ‘what’ you do and ‘brand message’ loses relevance. People buy people first and foremost, before they buy anything that they may eventually buy from you. It’s time to show your true colours, allow people to see who you are and share your story. You can  can now connect with people in a more meaningful way than ever possible before live streaming changed the social media landscape.

Don’t overthink it…

Sometimes you have to just go where your heart tells you to go. The beauty of live streaming is it’s wonderful ability to see where it takes you. Sure, we can spend hours, days and even weeks creating the perfect piece of content to portray a message, but live streaming allows for raw, real time content that encourages questions, feedback and others’ view points to come to the surface which can change the direction in which you were going to go. The real golden nugget of all this? you are no longer talking ‘at’ people, you are talking ‘with’ them. In real time, your potential customers can talk with you, ask questions there and then. There is nothing more powerful than this, other than an actual face to face discussion. So consider it like this, live streaming provides a virtual, beautiful networking party in the palm of your hands. Forget waiting for the monthly networking meetings you have scheduled, you can network, every single day, with people that never even knew you or your business existed. What is also so wonderful is that there are no longer geographical boundaries. It may have been highly unlikely that you could place yourself in front of people in countries all over the world (unless of course you had an infinite pot of money to afford world travel) but now, you can and it costs no physical money, just your time, effort and the desire to build and grow meaningful relationships.

But remember…

 In the digital space, attention is a currency, we earn it, we spend itBrian Solis

There is so much content available across the whole of the digital landscape, this is no different in the live streaming world. Your time is valuable and your communities and potential customers’ time is valuable. Attention must be earned. It is not given readily and in exchange for the attention that people are prepared to give you, you must provide them with something valuable. So think about this, the beauty of live streaming is it’s raw, unfiltered beautiful ability to show authenticity and tell stories, but make sure it is a story worth telling. When you decide to hit the ‘start broadcast’ button have your ideas in mind and a basic outline of what you are going to discuss during your live stream. Make it clear in your title what you are going to be discussing so your live stream community can know what to expect and make an informed choice to tune into your broadcast. Do not waste their time, it is valuable, so therefore provide value.

And Finally…

Don’t forget to interact and engage with those who take the time to share their time with you, questions and viewpoints will arise. Let your community have a voice too. Allow them to speak freely and involve them in your broadcasts. Without this, there is little point to live streaming at all. Remember, live streaming offers a unique environment to talk ‘with’ not ‘at’ your community and potential customers.

Live streaming really does offer you a huge opportunity now and going forward into 2016. If you are not familiar with it yet then it is definitely time to be doing some homework and brainstorm some ideas about how you can incorporate it into your social media strategy for the coming year.

Enjoy researching and if you are new to Periscope, you can take a look at our very basic 10 periscope tips for beginners to help you start your research!

Periscope Summit Changed My Life – For The Better

Periscope Summit Changed My Life – For The Better

It was about two months ago that I purchased a ticket (a golden ticket as I called it) that was about to change my life for the better.

Cue: Periscope Community Summit NYC 2015 …

I have been back in the UK for a couple of week and decided it was time to put pen to paper (well fingers to keyboard) and share my experience of The Periscope Community Summit with you.

The lead up to the summit was an exciting time for me, strengthening connections with people from all corners of the globe through Periscope and Blab. There was a real excitement that we would all be coming together as a community, face to face for the first time in New York City.

I have to give a huge shout out to the Periscope Community Summit organisers Ryan Bell, Cathy Hackl, Alice Chase, Randall Chase and Alexis Cardoza who organised something that I can only describe as incredibly special, their vision is what made this happen. I , for one (amongst many others I know that share the same view) am very grateful.

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 Leaving On A Jet Plane

The flight over to NYC was filled with excitement…. I scoped from the airport in London and boarded my American Airlines flight to The Big Apple! Wi Fi on the plane on the way over meant I was able to post and share the exciting journey with many of the other amazing people and social influencers that were also attending the event. The excitement built as the plane descended into New York, knowing I was about to meet the people I had been sharing social media conversations with for a long while. I could not wait to meet everyone!

Hello Friends IRL , How Great It Was To Meet You!

Arriving at Yotel was an awesome experience (there are too many people to name in this post, but for the purpose of anyone reading this who attended, you are all very special people). I first met my ‘roomie’ for the next few days Kohleen Lidell and Adrienne M Dyer and her husband Colin Dyer…. the first thing that happened? …. squeals , and hugs! I cannot explain how exciting it was, finally meeting people that you feel you already know in actual person. We checked in and up in the lift we went!

As the doors opened, the first thing I saw was a rather familiar back of a hat (I think many of you will know who’s hat I’m referring to here) The words read ‘Talk Fast – Tweet Faster’ It was none other than iSocialFanz himself Brian Fanzo More hugs were the order of the day! I have followed Brian on Twitter for years and he was someone that I was super looking forward to meeting. His values and beliefs have always resonated with me highly and to be quite frank, he had always just seemed like a really nice human being … he did not disappoint.Over the next few days of getting to know him better, I can honestly say that Brian is as exception ally nice in real life (if not better) as he is across social media. he is a million percent authentic, genuine and all about community!

I chuckle about this now, but the one thing I was not expecting was people’s proportions. Meeting Ryan Steinolfson, Alex Khan, Ryan Bell , Mitch Jackson and Alexis Cardoza in real life?  Man, those small squares we view on Periscope and Blab, does not quite represent how these guys proportions are in real life …. they are super tall, but to go with that, they have super big hearts too, genuinely 100% lovely individuals. It was an absolute pleasure to be able to spend a few days in their wonderful company! …. and of course, more hugs, were the order of the day!

The one thing I can say about The Periscope Community Summit, is how genuine and familiar those first real-life connections felt. There were no awkward silences, it just felt like a group of friends meeting who had known each other for years. It was at this moment, before the keynote speeches had even begun, that I began to realise the immense power of Periscope as a platform. People who had NEVER met before, were greeting each other like friends. We kind of knew each other from watching snippets about each others lives through the small screens of our smart phones. If those relationships could be formed at such an early stage, before even meeting, it quickly dawned on me how powerful Periscope could be as a business tool. A platform that has the ability to break down those initial barriers that we sometimes have before we meet someone for the first time in real life …. WOW …. to me, this was going to be huge.

Business Aside … Periscope Has A Much Greater Power … COMMUNITY!

It was all about to begin, seats taken, stage ready, eager audience and a powerhouse of speakers about to do their thing …

Hundreds of Periscopers were now gathered ready to watch what I can only describe as THE BEST keynotes I have ever heard in my life. The buzz in the room was immense.

Welcoming a collection of rather fine people …

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We were taken through the whole summit, step by step by Africa Miranda and Marc Kaye. Bravo Periscope Summit for picking this pair of perfect hosts! they grabbed my attention straight away!

So, It all began with an opening keynote from Grant Cardone, who I have to say is a very humble and down to earth guy! … His inclusion of our youngest attendee (a 9 month old baby, who soon became known as ‘Peribaby’) in his opening keynote was rather heartwarming! Of course, he ‘brought it’ as he always does, with his powerful presence and words of motivation. But it was really nice to see this other side. Immediately, I knew this summit was going to bring so much value, inspiration and so many perspectives.

The keynotes that followed from Alex Khan, Alex Pettitt and KatchHQ Were nothing short of amazing in their own unique ways! … covering their own view points and perspectives, delivering power and inspiration with every single word. I honestly couldn’t believe how inspired I was! …. In two words, MIND BLOWING!

Then came Tasmin Lucia-Khan , everything that this lady embodies is wonderful. Her keynote brought so much emotion with it. I smiled, I cried and  it made me think of all of the different ways Periscope could be used for social good. We should all be using Periscope for social good. What a powerful presentation from a powerful lady. She genuinely is an absolute sweetheart and I thank her for touching my heart.

The whole Periscope Summit to me was just INCREDIBLE and every single keynote speaker inspired me in their own unique way.

The closing keynote came from Brian Fanzo it was absolutely outstanding.

We > Me: The Future Of Business Is Community And Collaboration

Brian was introduced like this, ‘with his message, with his education, is a heart’ … that couldn’t have been more perfect.

That heart, and a great big heart it is too, spoke to every individual person in that room with such a powerful message. The future of the business world is in community and collaboration. If we can find ways to #ShowUCare across social media, then together we can be intensely powerful … far more powerful than if we stand alone.

For me, ‘competition in business’ is a phrase that should be banned. In my opinion, there is none. We lift ourselves higher by lifting others and working together to achieve great things.

I strongly urge everyone to watch the keynote  WARNING: Inspiration Overload!

The Social Side Of The Periscope Summit!

Throw together some of the most dynamic and diverse individuals from all corners of the earth who are all hugely passionate about life and business and believe me, you are in for a great time!

The atmosphere was exciting. We laughed, cried, shared emotions, strengthened relationships, took a LOT of selfies, shared a LOT of hugs and came together as a community. I really felt that I had found people that shared such a similar passion for life as I do. I am grateful for all of you.

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Being my first time in New York City, I knew it would take my heart. It is a place I had always wanted to visit. What touched my heart the most were the people. Periscope Community Summit taught me that if we can all be a little kinder, more encouraging of others, embracing of their ideas, less critical, more empowering and see that together, we are a pretty powerful force to be reckoned with and a powerful force that can do great things, then the world would be a much better place!

This changed my life because I really was able to ‘explore the world through the eyes of somebody else’ as Periscope puts it. But not just someone else, lot’s of someone else’s, through the eyes of everyone that attended those few days in New York. My life is richer because of all of you.

So thank you. A huge heartfelt thank you. I look forward to seeing you all in San Fransisco! For anyone considering attending the next Periscope Community Summit … JUST DO IT without any hesitation. It will be the best decision you make! My tickets are already purchased and I’m ready for round two!

Take a look at the next Periscope Community Summit event here.

And finally, to each and every one of you that attended who I had the pleasure of spending time with ….. THANK YOU!

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Periscope On Air Button

Periscope On Air Button

What a great feature!

Ok Guys, so I am not one for sharing hints and tips on Periscope (I’ll leave that to the super Periscope hints and tips superstars).

But, I am super impressed with the new periscope ‘Periscope On Air Button’ feature and following a quick scope of testing it, I was wondering if anyone else loves this as much as I do?

It’s super easy to install:

1) Go to www.periscope.tv/embed

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2) Pop your handle into the blank box as you see it below (selecting either a large or small button size)

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3) Periscope will then generate you the HTML code to use on your website or blog …. hey presto, it’s super simple!

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It appears nice and clear on your website …

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And informs your website viewers exactly when you are live …

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Bravo Periscope … Big Thumbs Up!

I really LOVE this new feature what a great addition to this awesome platform.

Rock Twitter In 5 Easy Steps

Rock Twitter In 5 Easy Steps

Are you looking for ways to successfully market your personal brand or business with Twitter? Do you want to learn some of the best practices that can help you rock at using this powerful platform?

If so, you are in the right place! … These 5 tips will help to get you on your way!

If You Are Tweeting – Tweet Smart

With the increase of the direct messaging facility on twitter and talks about increasing twitters 140 character tweet limit (of which I am not a fan) it’s important to remember why we use twitter, to convey a message in a clear, concise and effective way. I hear many effective twitter users say ” How is it hard to write something in 140 characters?” However, for those who are new to twitter or struggling to convey a message in 140 characters, trust me are not alone, It is precisely because of the character limit that it becomes more difficult to convey your twitter message effectively

Tweeting smart will help you to increase your brand awareness and audience engagement on twitter in an effective way. So, how do you tweet smart? I would start by using hashtags that are relevant to the content you are posting and to the audience  that you are targeting. Practice writing exactly what you want your tweet to say by opening up your tweet then eliminating words to bring your tweet down to the character count. You will be surprised how you can convey your exact message in fewer words, all it takes is practice. Remember to leave space for links and images too. Knowing the best time to tweet and having a regular consistent strategy all help when it comes to tweeting smart.

Engage And Build Relationships

It is crucial that this is at the forefront of your mind. Twitter is not just a platform for you to share your promotions and content and talk about how amazing you are, nobody want’s to hear that. Twitter is a social platform that calls for interaction, engagement and growing relationships with other users.

Epictetus — ‘We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.’

This quote resonates with me, every single time I log into twitter. If you are using twitter purely as a broadcasting tool, you are using it wrong. Listen to what is being said by your followers, by opening up our ears your are able to really understand what people are saying. When you listen you are able to understand people’s pain points and provide value, by helping to answer queries if we know the answers.

Contribute to conversations, ask questions and share content if it is something that lies within your own core values. If you see something that you like, it is likely that your followers will enjoy it too. After all, they are following you and enjoy what you tweet about already. Spread some twitter love and share valuable content. This will also encourage relationships to form with the person or brand who’s content you are sharing. Don’t forget, if someone shares your content a thank you goes a long way. Just as in real life, if someone talks to you, talk back, we are not automated robots and the power of conversation on twitter is something that will turn you from a self promoter and broadcaster into someone who cares about their community. Community is key on twitter, so don’t be shy, get involved.

Build A Content Strategy

Sharing original content that is relevant and cram packed with quality, will help you build a strong twitter presence,  develop trust with your audience and establish your credibility as a thought leader in your industry.

In my opinion, good content is made up of 3 Key elements:

Value + Relevance + Quality

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Ask yourself these 3 key questions.

1. How much value does this content provide for your followers?

2.How relevant is this content to your niche/specialty?

3.Is this content of really good quality? (There is so much content available, is this really something worth sharing)

If you can put a tick in the box next to these key fundamentals then tweet away!

Another part of your content plan should be your tweeting frequency. A good place to start is to practice sending out a certain number of tweets throughout a day, and seeing what resonates well with your twitter community. There is no right or wrong number here, what suits one brand will not suit the next. Experiment and discover when is the best time for you to tweet and how often you need to do this.

Images Are Key

Tweets that include videos and images are proven to drive higher engagement than other tweets. I’m a big fan of the visual! It’s a great way to cut through ‘the noise’ and stand out amongst the many millions of tweets that are sent out on a daily basis.

Highly Successful brands such as Coca Cola use a mixture of GIFs, Vines, videos and images in their tweets, which drives high engagement with their following.

Bold, bright and eye catching imagery is crucial to make your tweets stand out.

It’s All In The Hashtags

Hashtags were born on twitter and have been adopted by many other social platforms as an easy way to categorise content.

Using relevant hashtags on twitter, can help you generate engagement and project your message to specific audiences outside your followers. Using hashtags will help you to target the right audience enabling you to be part of their twitter conversations and put you in a prime place to start building relationships with twitter users you may not have previously connected with.

Experiment first by using the twitter search facility to see what hashtags are being used people in your industry. This is a great place to begin. You will also be able to see the volume of content being served up for each hashtag you search, this will help you to decide if it is a hashtag that you may wish to use within your own twitter strategy.

So there you have it, 5 tips to to help you ROCK twitter.

These 5 tips are simple to implement, they require a little time and practice, but it will be worth it in the long run!

If you would like to learn more about using twitter for business, you may like to consider and one to one consultation. These can be done F2F (Location dependent) or via Skype.

Get Social with twitter guys!

Vikki, Blend Social

Contact Blend Social: Here

10 Periscope Tips For Beginners

10 Periscope Tips For Beginners

Periscope is a live streaming video social network that allows you to discover events. information, topics and discussions from all over the world through the medium of live video!

Are you new to Periscope or considering using Periscope for your business ? If so, here’s 10 tips you need to know about this HUGELY interactive and beneficial social media platform.

  1. Periscope enables you to stream any content that you like, live from anywhere in the world. When you are streaming live,  you are considered a ‘Broadcaster’.
  2. Titles are hugely important to the number of views your live broadcast will receive. Titles are what attract people to watch your live video so keep them as interesting and intriguing as possible.
  3. When you are watching a live stream, you are able to tap on the screen to give the broadcaster hearts. Hearts act as a Periscope applause. They show the broadcaster that you like what you are watching
  4. The number of hearts on a live stream help to measure popularity on Periscope.
  5. Periscope is a very engaging platform. The chat function at the bottom of the screen makes it easy for you to interact with your audience as a Broadcaster and interact with Broadcasters as a viewer. It’s a two way street and a great way to facilitate live conversation. If you wish to ask for more information on the subject being broadcasted, the chat facility enables this to happen.
  6. As a Broadcaster, you really should make sure to talk back to your audience. If people take the time to talk to you, then please take the time to talk back, it is critical for building relationships.
  7. Once your broadcast is finished, you will be able to view analytics, this will show you number of views, retention rate, duration of video, and the number of hearts that you received.
  8. When you complete your broadcast, you will see an option to save it to your camera roll and save it to be viewed later. If you save it to be viewed later, people who currently follow you will be able to see it for the next 24 hours before it disappears, this is great for your followers to be able to check in to see what you have posted if they are not available at the time of  live broadcast.
  9. Before you broadcast, you will see 3 icons: one location, one privacy, and one twitter. Here’s a little information about them:
    1. Location: If you  click this, your video will show your current location. Be very careful though, people can zoom in on the map and see the precise location from which you are filming. If you are filming your broadcast from home, we would suggest not showing your location for privacy purposes.
    2. Lock: The lock button will allow you to live stream a video for only a certain group of people to see. If you want to live stream to a select group then you can choose which people will be able to see your broadcast.
    3. Twitter: If this is turned on, a notification will be tweeted out on your twitter profile saying that you are currently live streaming on Periscope. It is a great idea to connect the two platforms, just be careful that you are producing great content on Periscope, you do not want to discourage Twitter followers from following you if you are not posting good quality content. As with all social media platforms, PROVIDE VALUE!
  10. When you watch a broadcast, if you would like to follow the person who is currently broadcasting, swipe right on your smartphone and their profile will pop up. You will then see their profile picture and be able to follow them.

From a business perspective, Periscope is GOLD! By enabling your followers to take a look inside your business world, it helps to enhance their trust for you and your brand and shows them a face behind the name. So go on, give it a go! Lights, Camera, ACTION!

Small Business Social Media Success- 3 Quick Tips!

Small Business Social Media Success- 3 Quick Tips!

If you are a small business marketing yourself on Social Media, you will know it is constantly evolving.

Consumers actively look to websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so on prior to making a purchase decision. Social networking reviews act as online word of mouth recommendation and your social pages and profiles really are the heart of your business for everyone to see. We all know how crowded it is out there in the social sphere and it’s no longer a matter of if you should get your business active on social media but how well you portray yourself.

I would go so far to say, if you are a small business, you cannot afford to avoid social media, unless of course, you are happy to lose business to your competitors!

Social Networks are a great place to start to develop relationships and build conversations between your potential clients and your brand! With so many fantastic businesses using social media well it is important that you use them well and effectively in order to stand out from the crowd and your potential competition!

Here are 3 quick tips to get you thinking about your social media strategy, whether you are a beginner, or looking to give your content a revamp, these should help you on your way,

BE CONSISTENT:

Consistency is KEY!

Your updates to your various social networks need to be focussed for your target market. They also need to be consistent. Create a schedule that suits you and one that you are able to stick to.

Your social following will become familiar with when to expect updates from your business and when to look out for the ‘Killer Content’ that you are about to present to them. Scheduling tools such as Hootsuite, Buffer and Sendible are great tools to make sure your content will be delivered on a consistent basis. If you are unable to send a post at a time of day that comes to be expected, scheduling means that you can continue with your other daily work duties, whilst ensuring that your posts are sent out across your social media accounts.

Whilst it is important to focus your content for your target market, DO NOT forget that ‘variety is the spice of life’. The same content day in, day out will become repetitive and boring. Keep your content varied, fresh and unique and don’t forget to SHARE other peoples great content to your accounts. A good balance of industry content, humour, quotes, visuals and interesting articles are a good start for creating engaging and attractive social profiles.

Have fun with what you are doing. Your audience will be able to see that you LOVE what you do through the tone of your social posts. Give them something to smile about, it all helps with your engagement.

STOP SELLING / BE HUMAN:

Have you ever been tempted to buy from somebody who constantly bombards you with sales messages?

No, Not Me!

I’m sure you are in exactly the same boat.  Don’t sell yourself  to anyone before you get to know them. People want to get to know you, trust you and know that you are someone that they are happy to do business with.

Finding common ground with your followers is a great way to get to know people. This could be achieved by something as simple as asking people what they are doing at the weekend. Be interested in your followers, don’t blanket approach them all in the same manner, appeal to their individual needs and interests.

Talking about local events, current local topics of interest and showing that you and your business get involved in the local community will all help to build trust and credibility. Treat social networking just like face to face networking. Ask questions, engage with post comments, talk to your followers.

Listen and engage first. If a sale is going to happen, it will,  as trust and credibility is built.

BE LOCAL:

Really concentrate on growing your social media networks with people in your local town or city.

The more involved you get, the more interactive you will become with people in your local area. If people come to know you well, the greater the possibility that sales leads and potential business will come your way.

Don’t forget to take online, OFFLINE…

Attending  local networking events (there are many of these) will really help people to get to know you. Don’t just be a face online, be a face in the community. When you get the balance right of being human online and physically networking face-to-face with some of the people you will meet through Social Media, you will find success.

Another handy takeaway to help your local social media following is to use hashtags. They are a great way to gain exposure within your local area. I would suggest Identifying a handful of area specific hashtags and using these in your posts and tweets to make sure your business is getting involved with local area discussions.

TIME TO BEGIN

There are a numerous social media platforms where you can start applying these tips and techniques.

Choosing just one or two different platforms to begin, is a good starting point! Once you become happy with your strategy and know it is working well for you, then you may wish to expand your social networking further and try out alternative platforms.

Think about your potential target audience when you are choosing where to begin. Explore the various platforms and choose where you think your business would be best suited.

What is right for one business, will not necessarily be right for another.

Master one or two well and make them a successful part of your overall business marketing strategy.

Good luck and have fun!

Victoria