Monthly Archives: August 2011

How to Create a small business social media strategy

Social Media Camp 2009 - Using Social Media fo...

Image by deanmeyersnet via FlickrHBreaking down the process of creating your social media strategy will make it more:

Here is how you can create a social media strategy which will be:

  • Accessible
  • Manageable
  • Sustainable

1) Setting Goals for Social Media.

To set goals you first have to decide what you want to accomplish. The reality is unless you decide what your goals and objectives are up front then your not going to have any idea if your are actually moving in the right direction or not. Goal setting is important in the beginning stages of the process.
Ultimately what is it your wanting to achieve?
What measurements will show that you are achieving that goal?
What do you want to accomplish with your social media campaign? Be SMART- Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time based.

2) Research/Education.

I end up doing a lot of education with my clients about the research that others have done. And then sometimes we have to do some research about the specific niche market that their business resides in. I help them understand social media from their perspective and guide them about where they want to focus their attention and why. Most of the work has been done by large corporations with large budgets that can hire someone full time to do their social media for them. This is good and bad.

The good part is they are spending lots of money and making lots of mistakes to help find what works and what is effective so you get some benefits from the process as well.

The bad is that sometimes it’s hard to translate what a large corporation is  doing in terms that are manageable on a small scale.

How can you as a small business owner benefit from all the work that is already happening?
What blogs pertain to your product or service? How can you engage with the conversation that is already happening?
How can you make sure your customers find you when they have the problem you solve?
How do you, or how will you listen to conversations pertinent to your business?
Who is your target audience?

3) Integration.

Create an online list of contacts and content- Having your contact list on line will allow you to utilize various applications and software solutions to integrate your plan once you develop it. So incorporating the process of putting this online has to be thought about from the beginning.
What are you currently using to capture information about people?
How will you remember this person who your talking too in 6 months?
It is my opinion that you should have a foundation which should be your website. From there all your social media should extend out but also anchor back too. Decide what tools you need to utilize to access your various social media sites and help you communicate your message to your followers. There are constant shifts in what is popular and how you use different sites. Find someone who stays on top of what and how you can use each tool or social site.

4)Build and nurture Relationships.

One key factor in business is having a strong relationship with your customers. Join in on the conversation to develop relationship with people who discuss your industry in social media. If you don’t engage then no one knows your even there. Ask a question, share a thought. Try to think in terms of being of service and helping people out. If you know something that someone else doesn’t share it with them. Gives them a reason to believe in you and what your selling.
Strengthen Relationships. If you want customers to like you more then you have to show them some respect. You can do that by participating in conversations in a respectful way. Sharing and helping others which will in turn benefit you because you become someone who isn’t just out for themselves. How many relationships do you value and maintain when the other person or business is only after their own benefit without any thought toward helping you?

5) Collect data for Analysis.

Analyze it and decide how to improve what your doing. Utilize  things that can help you collect data or tools that collect it for you. Set up auto generated reports because most small business owners forget to generate reports for themselves on a regular basis.  Let the tools work for you.

Local Kansas City Coaching News

Local Kansas City Coaches News for Coaches and non-coaches alike. Find out what is happening in Kansas City in the Coaching Profession.

This month at your local Kansas City International Coach Federation Chapter Heartland Coaches Association is guest Speaker is Kelly Tyler.

Master the Art of NOT Multitasking!

While the rest of the world is trying to convince us to multitask,

Kelly advises audiences to worry less about fitting more in and more about living All-In.

Whew — What a relief!

In this program, Kelly will cover:

The latest research about how the brain works – take the pressure off yourself!

How to release the guilt of feeling like you’re not doing enough.

5 strategies to stop the madness of multitasking.

How to let others win the competition of the overbooked, overworked, and overwhelmed!

Kelly is an award-winning speaker, published author, consultant, coach, and trainer.
She knows the challenges professional coaches face and how
the temptation to over-do it actually damages coaching relationships.
She will customize the topic for us as coaches, so we can apply it immediately.

Time: 12:00-2:00 (lunch included)

Ottawa University-Greater Kansas City
4370 West 109th Street, Suite 200
Overland Park, Kansas, 66211

3 Key Principles I’ve learned being a Coach

A friend recently asked what I’ve learned from being a coach. A simple question, but my answer deserved reflection, soul searching, and elaboration. My experiences and lessons from the last 10 years of coaching could not be reduced to a pithy Tweet or even a Facebook post. My feelings on the subject run big and they run deep. Living in Kansas City has helped shape my experience but the principles apply no matter where you live.

1) Clients know what’s right for them. Coaching is not about telling someone else how to live his or her life. Helping someone find his or her own answers is what coaching is truly about.

2) Facing fears is always easier in the light. When we share what we’re afraid of with others we cast it out of the shadows and into the light. Thus giving you the ability to see more options. Most people tend to hide and avoid what we fear actually giving it more power than it deserves. Talking about it, stating it out loud,  takes that power back from the specific event or challenge and regains that power in your core being where it belongs.  It gives you the ability to discuss the problem with people that maybe have gone through something similar or exactly the same thing which in return allows you to be better equipped to make decisions around whatever the fear is.

Part of my coaching is helping my clients see how to be honest with them selves so that the obstacles that they’re facing can become clearer. Once you can see an obstacle for what it is you can start to formulate strategic plans about how you’re going to tackle that obstacle.  Taking a very clear and honest assessment of exactly where you are allows you to set clearer goals about where you want to go. Thus allowing a direction or path to become clearer.

3) What you focus on expands.

If you focus on problem that problem is going to get bigger. By focusing on the solution then it will become bigger thus crowding out the problem.

This is not to say that you don’t recognize the problems or obstacles that lay between you and the solution. It is however to say that your focus and your attention once you identify the obstacles or problem needs to be on the end result, the solution, NOT the problem. This is where most people go wrong. It’s where most of the work of coaching happens. Focusing on what you’re trying to create helps to keep you from getting lost in obstacles. Little obstacles in the span of our lifetime are miniscule unless you give each one of them so much power they become overwhelming and thus able to stop you from moving toward your goal.

Helping clients to recognize that they have choices every day all day long allows them to see their actions as choices, not just reactions.

I choose to focus on the positive things that I see in life. With all things though that’s a skill it’s a skill that I consciously and constantly tried to hone and improve. It’s a skill I help my clients work on. I believe it brings joy even to negative situations to be able to appreciate beauty.

Optimist or Pessimist glass

Which are you?

A well-known proverb states: an optimistic would say a glass is half full, while a pessimist would say it is half empty. What would people of different professions and walks of life say?

The government would say that the glass is fuller than if the opposition party were in power.

The opposition would say that it is irrelevant because the present administration has changed the way such volume statistics are collected.

The philosopher would say that, if the glass was in the forest and no one was there to see it, would it be half anything?

The economist would say that, in real terms, the glass is 25% fuller than at the same time last year.

The banker would say that the glass has just under 50% of its net worth in liquid assets.

The psychiatrist would ask, “What did your mother say about the glass?”

The seasoned drinker would say that the glass doesn”t have enough ice in it.

The Coach would say lets fill the glass up together.

There is the argument from the pessimists that if you only focus on the fact that the glass is half-full you’re not solving the problems. That is a very easy place to be. There is a greater sense of being in control when you focus on a specific problems and how to solve them. That doesn’t mean that that’s the quickest or the healthiest or the most productive way to be. It also just means you have a list of problems to solve and as soon as you finish the list there will be more to add.

Let’s look at the analogy of the glass half-full or half-empty. If you’re thirsty and you want a drink of water do you drink a half empty glass of the water or do you in fact drink the half-full? If you want to fill the glass up it’s more productive to focus on where the water came from how good it tastes, how it quenches your thirst rather than focusing on the fact that it’s only half full. Coaching allows me to help clients practice this in their lives in the way they look at business, relationships it’s about helping them stay focused on the glass half-full with the goal of filling the glass up. By focusing on that aspect you’re focusing on what works, what you like, what you want to attract. You’re focusing on your strengths rather than your weaknesses you’re focusing on moving forward rather than staying stuck. The majority of coaching and one’s focus should be where you want to go. Where do you want to move? What direction do you want to go?

From a business or behavioral standpoint there is a difference between the traditional change management theory and appreciative inquiry. The typical approach from change management theory is to look for the problem diagnosis and find a solution. So the focus stays on what’s broken or what’s wrong and when you look for what’s wrong that’s for your energies are with the problem. The underlying beliefs are that we can fix that problem, that we can change an organization when we can find a solution to a challenge. From appreciative inquiry standpoint, which is the basis of my coaching practice, is the belief that in every piece of art there is beauty so every individual client or organization/small business is a piece of art that there is beauty in. Choosing to focus on the beauty is what I’m talking about when I say the glass is half-full. From an appreciative inquiry standpoint, assumptions play huge roles in our behavior and choices. Consequently assumptions play a huge role in change. We assume a great many things in life and after a while they just sort of become factual. We look at assumptions as if they have become factual; we actually think that it’s true because that’s been our experience so it’s true for us. So assumptions are statements or rules that explain what a group or individual generally believe.

Assumptions explain the context of the group’s choices and behaviors.

Assumptions are usually not visible to or verbalized by the participants or members rather they develop and exist.

Assumptions must be made visible and discussed before anyone can be sure of what the group believes.

When working with an individual their life their family their relationships are the key that is the organization to them who they surround themselves who they have a relationship with is their organization it’s fluid it moves with them continually is reinforced or sometimes challenged. But having a discussion again bringing something into light makes it easier to face the fear or challenge an assumption, which in turn allows you to choose your own path in this life.

 

There are 8 assumptions of appreciative inquiry. (Taken from the “Thin book of Appreciative Inquiry”)

 

  1. In every society organization or group, something works.
  2. What we focus on becomes our reality.
  3. Reality is created in the moment and there are multiple realities.
  4. The act of asking questions of an organization or group influences the group in some way.
  5. People have more confidence and comfort to journey to the future the unknown when they carry forward parts of the past the known.
  6. If we carry parts of the past forward, they should be what is best about the past.
  7. It is important to value differences.
  8. The language we use creates our reality.

 

Sign up if you’re interested in hearing more. I am planning a series on utilizing coaching in your own life.

If you have a question you’d like addressed please feel free to submit it.