I feel a change coming…

May 1, 2010 Leave a comment

I feel that this blog is about to shift direction….again, lol.

I am passionate about a lot of things in this life and I figure that I should spend my life leaning into all of my fears and doubts to pursue all of my passions. Why you may ask?

Simply because I cannot live with myself if I come to the end of my life and realize that I did not follow a dream that God placed in my heart simply out of fear, doubts, etc.. If I did not pursue it because I grew tired of it or no longer had the fire in my belly to pursue it — that would be fine. But to just hide myself away from my own dream(s) simply because I am scared??? Nope…not for me…not in this life. As long as the fire in my belly exists to express myself in this world, in a myriad of spaces, I will keep pushing myself. It is what keeps me going, lol…besides…I like leaning into the fear…it tastes sweet and feels amazing when you make your fear your friend, lol.

So is this blog really shifting? Not really…I guess…since at the core of it is the pursuit of one’s passions. I am currently pursuing one of my passions — helping to solve people’s problems within the space of social media. Is it feasible to pursue more than one passion at a time? I hope so…because that is just what I am about to do, lol.

Keep you posted! ;-)

“Making Ideas Happen” By Scott Belsky…

April 11, 2010 3 comments

So, I just recently received my copy of “Making Ideas Happen” by Scott Belsky, founder and CEO of Behance. I am sooo excited to read this book and review it because although I was staunch in my belief that all ideas have value, regardless of whether or not they are executed — I think this book might not only change my mind but it also looks like it might be a great companion for myself along my own journey to bring my ideas to fruition….I shall keep you posted! 

And I have to read fast since this book will be released on this Thursday, April 15th…gotta go! LOL…

Some Concrete Ideas…

March 26, 2010 Leave a comment

So, I have been thinking a bit about my most recent post, along with a large chunk of my posts — and how they all focus on the very abstract concepts inherent in the field of communications. More importantly, I realized that although my brain may be conjuring up all of these abstract ideas, they may not be very useful for people since most people like to trust in facts and data.

So, I decided to start blogging with the intent of leaving the reader with a bit more than just my abstract ideas. I have now determined that I will have at least one concrete, actionable idea in each of my posts. Hopefully, people will find this a bit more useful — I know I will.

With that said, I have listed three ideas that companies/brands could use in order to be more authentic with their end-users/consumers are listed below. Let me know what you think. Thanks!

1. Determine where you want your brand/product/service to be in the next three to five years.

Now, I have know this may be a very tall order for some companies (this goes for individual teams within a company as well), simply because some are on autopilot right now and have not thought of their long-term strategy in a very, very long time. However, it is essential to think about if you want to reassess, reaffirm and re-calibrate the way you think of your company/brand. Besides, it keeps you on our toes and keeps you focused on the core, crucial aspects of your brand/service/product.

2. Engage three employees, at different levels of influence, to listen and research for customers who are on twitter, facebook and top bloggers in your field of service/product.

I say three for now because you can assume that you will have at least varying perspectives to work with. This will definitely take some time and investment, but it will be well worth it to have a solid understanding of how your customers really feel about your brand/service/product instead of what you tell yourself every day.

3. Although you will have “customer listeners” hard at work, you don’t necessarily have to have a presence on Facebook, Twitter or even in the blogosphere.

It might help you look like you are in the social media space but it won’t help at all if you have no idea why you are there. So, determine what channels most resonate with your focus for your brand/company/service and then head to those mediums first and begin developing a presence there. This probably sounds counterintuitive given that everyone is talking about all of the emerging technologies, the rise of various digital media, etc. — however, the customer is who you should be focused on. If your customer is confused about your Twitter presence because you only joined because everyone else did — well, you have just given your customer a reason to doubt if you know what you are doing. And who wants to buy from someone who doesn’t seem to know what they are doing?

Those are my ideas for now…off to get some sleep…hope these help!

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Connecting is at the Crux

March 26, 2010 Leave a comment

I just spent an amazing afternoon/evening with a really good friend of mine (Chris J.). It is always refreshing because he is so present to your presence when you spend time with him. He is also very much like a clear landing strip in the sense that he allows you the space to just be your complete self – and it feels awesome!

As I was bonding with him, we spoke about my passion for digital communications, the internet and the power that is now in the hands of the end-user. And as I was discussing with him these passions combined with my passions for singing, writing, dancing and maybe even acting, he expressed what I am trying to express through all of these mediums. What he expressed was so powerful for me and I processed it as my deep desire to help people/companies/brands reach their authentic selves and my deep need to share myself with the world. Why am I bringing this up?

I bring all of this up because I, once again, am calling for brands/companies/individuals to strive for their authentic selves. Why? Simply because that is what most resonates with people. I believe that there is a proliferation within the world of communications (and other fields as well) in which people seem to have forgotten their own humanity and that what people resonate most with is authenticity and empathy. If you (the brand/company/person) is being authentic, then you are operating at the level of self that also will be empathetic (just my own belief).

And if people are resonating with you, you do not even need to sell to them because they will want to buy whatever you have to offer – trust me on this one. I see it everyday when people act from a space of authenticity & empathy — others tend to respond with reciprocity. Check out this awesome pizza place in Berkeley, CA –> The Cheese Board…where there is always a long line for the great pizza, they create a sense of community in the way they treat people and by supporting local artists. And they don’t have to sell to people because people sense their authenticity & empathy and respond in like.

So, take a step and strip away all of the b.s. and busyness all around you and FOCUS on what your brand/company/personhood is OFFERING the end user instead of what you will GET…trust, it works everytime, regardless of what digital or traditional medium of communication that you use. ;-)

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Finally in CA-LI-FOR-NI-A!

March 22, 2010 Leave a comment

So, I have finally made my way out to California!!!! Woohoo!!!!!

It is nice out here…and it is even nicer being on vacation and enjoying the extended relaxation, lol.

But I felt compelled to write because I wanted to focus (again) on community and why it fascinates me so…specifically in retrospect of the communities that I have discovered during my (short) time thus far in California.

For starters, I am currently in the Bay Area, visiting friends and making new friends. And the first thing that struck me while I have been here is all of the young people who populate this general area. Even if they are young parents in their earlier 30s or young college graduates who are working on at startups or their own businesses, there is a general vibe of youth in the Bay Area. And it feels good to me. It feels very different from New York City in that this general youthful vibe is one that is absolutely prevalent throughout the Bay Area, particularly in San Francisco and Palo Alto, while in New York City — you sometimes have to search a bit harder for that youthful vibe.

And that youthful vibe got me thinking about the shared ideas, values and goals that a lot of the people I have met thus far throughout the Bay Area. There is definitely a sense that everyone is transitioning from one space to the next and just trying to learn as much as possible from each situation. There is also the high focus on entrepreneurship and/or flexibility within one’s work that I sensed from a lot of people. Also, I picked up on a social consciousness of one’s world and how one is affecting that world. Lastly, I got a huge sense that so many of these people were comfortable with the concept of failure — especially in the sense that if something doesn’t work out, it just means that you find another way to make things work for you instead of giving into despair. And I absolutely loved that vibe.

All of these qualities led me to think of who these people would be in 15-20 years…and I truly believe their lives will be quite different than that of their parents. And then I thought — how are companies and brands going to talk to these people in the future? To me, companies and brands are going to have to get very honest with themselves if they want to target this community — because this community is not interested with irrelevant, wasteful messages nor with a lack of getting things done. This community is focused on not only getting things done but on constantly growing in making things happen. Which makes this community very, very important to companies and brands, why? Simply because they are the ones who are early adopters and who will more than likely create something that will end up being a huge competitor for companies and brands. So why not start speaking with this community now? Why not start learning what is meaningful to them, what makes them tick and what gets them motivated to be a brand evangelist? Why not figure out ways to impress them, further develop your relationship with them and prove to them that you are a worthy focus for their attention?

I say all of this especially because I see this community in myself and I know that with people like me pushing the space of communications in that direction, it leaves many companies and brands little room to deny this community. Hmmm…the next five years are going to be very interesting. ;-)

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Do Not Break…

March 13, 2010 4 comments

So Lupe Fiasco and Kenna just put out a hot new song called “Resurrection” and the video focuses solely on the crisis and catastrophe that occurred in Haiti earlier this year (I cannot believe it has been almost two months now, wow).

For me, this song focuses the most on is the concept of resurrection — rebuilding oneself, not allowing oneself to be broken by circumstances, forging ahead even in spite of what you see right in front of you. It is about ” the love, the strength, the passion” of people that Lupe Fiasco calls out in the song.

And this made me think even more about the daily assaults upon our personhood to break us down…to make us believe that we should not do the right thing by strangers, that we should not help other people who seem to have nothing in common with us, that we should not open our hearts to the pain of others, regardless of their circumstances. These daily assaults come in a myriad of forms. Sometimes these are outright assaults or sometimes it is just when you are confronted with someone’s lies, thievery or insecurities.

I mean, isn’t this world a funny one in which we all bump into each other, at varying speeds and degrees, knocking each other around with our energies? Whether those energies are frenetic, slow as molasses, airy or heavy — we all are just molecules moving at the speed of sound, light…what have you.

Maybe  if we saw the world like that — maybe if we understood just how interconnected we all truly are…maybe, just maybe we wouldn’t treat people as a threat to our existence or our humanity. Maybe we wouldn’t harm people just because we are broken inside. Maybe we wouldn’t assume that we have to go it all alone in this world and just use people as pawns in our own scripts. Maybe.

And if not…if people are not going to see how interconnected the world is…then I say to all of you who see the world as a big interconnected highway of molecules moving with kinetic energy — I say to you…don’t let anyone break you. Don’t give in and give up hope for a better existence, for a better life, for the chance to rebuild and reinvent yourself every single day.

Instead…Be YOU. And then take who you are and focus on helping other people to understand that, focus on helping other people to not lose hope. Just as we need to do in Haiti…we must do it for everyone.

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