Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Putting Twitter to Work

A lot of business owners and corporate communications pros are wondering how to put new media to work for their organizations. Blogs, Wikis, Facebook, MySpace, YouTube, Twitter.... It seems to be a never ending list. Business owners wonder whether social media is just a big time suck or a way to truly boost productivity and make money. Should employees be allowed to become true brand ambassadors as they communicate with customers publicly or do I need to continue to control the message on a corporate level? These are fair questions at this point, although with a cohesive plan and strategy it is possible for a company to become a part of the communities new media creates, and utilize the flexibility and interactivity of social media to better tell your story.

At Jackson Spalding, we are advising a lot of clients on new media strategy, and part of the challenge is that the applications and potential solutions are diverse, and vary with the business. So every solution has to be custom built and resources have to be dedicated to implementing new media, and keeping the content fresh.

Earlier today, a colleague pointed me to a great example of a company utilizing new media. Believe it or not it is cable provider Comcast, which has improved customer service and generated buzz -- and a sense of community -- in an industry known for disappointing consumers. All it took was an enterprising customer service manager -- get the story here. Pretty cool idea that could be applicable to organizations with a lot of Gen Y constituents. A certain institution adjacent to downtown Athens comes to mind....

Monday, January 12, 2009

A Day On, Not a Day Off

Next Monday, the country observes Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - the day before the historic inauguration of the nation's first African American president. For many of us, that means a day off from work. Let me challenge you to make it a day of service instead.

Hands on Northeast Georgia's MLK Day of Service includes more than 20 service projects around town from clean-ups in historically African American cemeteries to beautification projects at schools and in area greenspaces. Service projects start at 9 a.m. and run to noon, at which time all participants are invited to the Lyndon House for lunch and commemorative celebrations.

As part of the MLK Day of Service, SingleServe will launch with its first project, clearing the nature trails behind Oglethorpe Avenue Elementary School for use by the students and the general public. Other projects offer opportunities for families to serve together or for you to support important causes like AIDS outreach and services for the homeless.

The day is about serving side by side and making our "beloved community" the best it can be for all who live here. Hands on Northeast Georgia expects more than 600 people to volunteer.

Click here to view the list of projects and decide which one inspires you to make it a day on and not a day off.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

My first poetry publication

My poem “Were I a Tourist” has just been published by Wazee Journal, based in Denver: This poem took six years, two poetry workshops, and several editors and listeners to complete. We –I mean humankind “we,” not poets “we” - cannot create anything in a vacuum! Poets have perpetuated the “poetry is a solitary art” myth for hundreds of years. In truth, even the most reclusive poets bring books by other poets, which is as solitary as bringing a private tutor or best friend along to boot camp.

Basically, I need to meet writers in Athens. Can someone help a poet out?