Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A little payback

I’m starting the New Year feeling pretty damn lucky. I have a job I love, we’ve got great energy, and the company has tremendous upside. As you may have seen in a previous post, much has changed for me over the past year.  Although the economy has improved, unfortunately there are still many friends who are in transition. I am so grateful for the help and support that many friends gave me during my jobless period. Today, it is time to give back.

Doug Haslam is making a career transition.  This is the first time in about ten years that he’s left one job without immediately having another to go to. Doug is truly one of the nicest guys in social media. He was one of my first friends on Twitter.  Doug is generous by being helpful to all he “meets” online. He is so witty that it’s no surprise that he had a ton of followers when the Twitter universe was small and that actually meant something. With his Boston references and Sox chatter, he always helps me stay connected to the Hub of the Universe, even from 3000 miles away. I am confident that Doug will find a great opportunity that suits him soon.  He is just too bright, too connected, and too much of a real PR professional that understands social media as well as traditional media. As you can imagine, Doug has a wealth of social capital that will no doubt help him. He’s also got some pretty good insights on using social media to find a job.  Having been through it myself, I know he’s got the right approach that will propel his career. Still, I know that a little help from his friends will be appreciated.

So how can you help Doug? Even if you don’t live near him or work in his industry? If we’ve learned anything from social media over these last few years, it’s the importance of community and the connections we make within that community. In my experience, there are three things that will always help and always be appreciated.

  1. Reach out to him and make an introduction that you think will be meaningful.
  2. Write a Linkedin recommendation for Doug.
  3. Write a blog post like this one which will introduce Doug to your blog community.

These actions are not hard to do and take it from me, not only are they appreciated greatly, but they do help.



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Sunday, January 3, 2010

A new brilliant character campaign

Picture of John F.

Image via Wikipedia

Back in the old days of Twitter (last year), we were all enthralled with the Madmen characters.  Fans were taking up the personas of Don Draper, Peggy Olson and the other members of Sterling Cooper. It was fun to receive tweets from the characters as their responses were influenced  by the characters personalities and the time frame they represented.  We even debated whether the characters were sponsored by Madmen producer, AMC, or directly by fans; and then whether fans had the right to tweet. Of course, it proved to be a fan driven exercise that many of us enjoyed.

Last night, Shel Israel pointed out another Twitter character campaign, this one more factual and based on history.  In honor of the 50th anniversary of his presidential campaign, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum has created Twitter characters to relive the historic campaign that most were too young to follow.  The JFK Library will use campaign documents to follow the trail and provide daily updates that will tell followers exactly what occurred on the corresponding day in 1960.

Presently we can follow JFK, President Eisenhower, and Kennedy opponent, VP Richard Nixon, Nixon’s running mate, Henry Cabot Lodge, JFK’s eventual running mate and then rival, Lyndon Baines Johnson and Senator Hubert H. Humphrey. It will be interesting to see which other characters join the reenactment.  Shortly, I expect to see JFK’s father, Ambassador Joseph Kennedy, and first brother, Robert F. Kennedy. I’ve set up a Twitter list to follow all of the “action”.

I am very excited about this approach. What a fantastic way to educate people who were born after that period about JFK’s meteoric rise and what political campaigns were like then.  Could this be the basis trend for educating people about historical pre-internet events? Given our need for interaction and engagement, is this the way to educate people in a fun and interactive way?  What other activities/events could be adapted to this style?


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