Thursday, August 26, 2010

General Information about why the social part is important

Science continues to show us how inter-connected we are naturally, and how important it can be for us to approach this with some intentionality.

Know this, I am incredibly proud of the patch we're creating here in Delaware in this social media quilt.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Just interesting statistics (a fairly narcissistic post)

One of the amazing things about this whole interwebs thing is how measurable everything is - I have a theory that these measurement tools are causing some sleepless nights for "traditional" marketing types. It used to be easy, tell someone that the billboard will mean 10 gazillion "impressions" - mix that with the television ad, the radio ad, and the full page newspaper ad and you'll have 230 mega-gajillion impressions!

NOTE: I am a firm believer in the above mentioned forms of advertising, and I have several friends in the advertising field - these communication tools are effective and useful - I just think some have taken advantage of the fact that you can't *really* measure how many people are "impressed" with these "impressions."

So, here's the thing - you can actually track how effective your message is here - you know how many people are watching your Youtube videos - or visiting your blog - and even how many people are clicking on the links you post on twitter.

While I do an occasional check to see how many people are clicking on the links I include on twitter, I'm normally just looking at a week's worth of traffic and, until now, haven't really stepped back to get a larger perspective, like this:

OK, so this counts the number of links I provided that were clicked on by others.

NOTE: This DOES NOT track links I've retweeted from others - ONLY those tweets that I originated with links shortened through Hootsuite.

So, since the beginning of this year, 4,869 people have clicked on a link I've offered up into the twittersphere - to be honest, I have no idea how that compares with others, all I know is that it indicates that others are engaging with me at some level, and for that I am both appreciative and humbled.

Now, a couple of quick observations about the most popular messages:

  • The most popular topic was the social media wedding (thank you, Chris and Elizabeth, for making this so much fun!) - those were messages #3, #6, and #10 on the list for a grand total of 197 clicks
  • It looks like people like fun - the most popular message was about a bunch of characters walking around the University of Delaware
  • People like Community - #2 on the list was a link to the Community Shoe Drive at BellaVista in Pike Creek, #4 was about the Greater Newark Network meeting, and #5 and #7 are all about getting the word out about how great Delaware is.

Another observation - until I looked at this chart, I honestly had no idea how many people had been clicking on these links to get information. Chances are, you don't know the kind of impact you're having - if you're active in the Delaware Social Media Community, please keep it up - if you are not yet engaging, please do, you'll never know how many people you will inform, encourage, entertain, and engage with!

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Huge Success Story!

This is exciting!

The Food Bank of Delaware has been awarded $10,000 to fund their backpack program:
The Backpack Program reduces hunger and improves the quality of life by providing nutritious foods and nutritional education while school is not in session. The Food Bank of Delaware works to identify children at risk of malnutrition to provide them with backpacks filled with nutritious meals and snacks that they take home on weekends. This grant will provide 51 children with meals for an entire program year. The food bank currently serves 46 school sites, however, there are an additional 35 school sites we have yet to reach with nutritious meals on the weekends and holidays. This grant will help us expand our Backpack Program to help feed children at risk of hunger in the state of Delaware.

How did this happen?

I'm glad you asked!

Kim Kostes at the Food Bank of Delaware entered the Good Idea Contest sponsored by Shoprite and Pepsi - Food Bank of DE and 14 other organizations posted ideas and gathered votes - the top five organizations to receive votes between July 8 and August 16 are awarded $10,000 each to fund their ideas.

Think about this for a minute - the other 14 organizations are from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New York, and other states in the mid-Atlantic and New England areas - based on population, it's safe to say Delaware is the underdog.

It seems like every week I have the same conversation with businesses, non-profits, and others who want to know why they should get involved with Social Media - hopefully this will demonstrate just some of the value.

Congratulations to Kim and everyone at the Food Bank of Delaware - and Huge Thanks to Everyone who voted, posted on facebook, retweeted on twitter and helped make this possible!

How to join the Delaware Twitter Community - super easy edition

OK, I'm working with a lot of people who are starting to see the benefits of getting on Twitter and joining in the Delaware Twitter community. Once people get in, they realize how helpful, useful, encouraging, informative, and great this community is - it's just the joining part that seems to be a small hurdle.

SO, Here's a couple of videos that do a great job of walking you through the basics of explaining what Twitter is and how to get started:

So, go to and set up your account.

Now that your account is set up, start following Delaware people - here's a couple of lists to check out:

- Delaware Twibe
- WeFollow list for Delaware
- TwitterGrader list for Delaware

By now, you should be following at least 100 people.

OK, now start using #netde with any posts that have to do with Delaware - and please retweet messages from others who are using #netde (you can click here to see the kinds of conversations going on with the #netde hashtag right now).

Here's some more resources to check out (I HIGHLY recommend subscribing to these feeds):

- Phil Woods' Digital Marketing
- Chris Brogan's best Twitter Advice

DO NOT become overwhelmed - this really is easy and the results will blow you away! - oh, and be sure to follow me on twitter - @kengrantde

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Videos from Ignite Dover

There are MUCH Better videos posted at the IgniteDover site - click here to see them!

July 14, 2010 - the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts in Dover - John McKown and his crew held Ignite Dover #1 - and is was incredible!

I took the liberty of recording everything on the Flip - here's the videos:

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Um, we need to have a little chat

OK, I've already addressed this issue once with @stevenfoley here, but maybe I need to cover this a little more explicitly for the rest of you, especially:

@CofSussexAngel (see comments section)

Here's the thing, when you're on twitter, you are limited to 140 characters - that's not a lot of space to communicate a reasonable message - you have to get to the point quickly. This normally means your message comes down to one of three categories:

  1. I'm passing along useful information
  2. I'm expressing something good/encouraging
  3. I'm upset and I'm throwing a tantrum

Now, stop and think about this for a moment - if you had three friends, one fitting in each category, and you could only hang out with two of those friends, which two would you choose?

If you look at the previous post, you'll see a really cool video showing the "Twitter Moods" around the country over a period of time, I've taken the liberty of grabbing a couple of screen shots:

Do you notice something there? Doesn't Delaware seem to kind of stick out in a good way?
I would argue that's because the vast majority of people in Delaware who choose to engage on Twitter are doing so in a positive way, using this tool to communicate useful information and/or expressions of gratitude and encouragement.

I'm asking you to really think about what you are trying to accomplish - because if you're trying to get people to support your candidate by yelling and screaming at those who support another candidate, well, that hasn't proven to be a very effective strategy.

If I were to employ your methods, the local twitter stream would be packed with links to posts like this and this and this and this and, well, you get the picture.

Seth Godin recently posted this piece about the kind of tactics you are using, here's a key excerpt:
If a candidate wants to gain attention and possibly votes, then, it makes short-term sense to stir up fear of strangers and turn it into anger. It might even work (once). But it makes it virtually impossible to govern. It's a short-term strategy that eats itself, because sooner or later, everyone is a stranger, and fear is no foundation for work that matters.

Here's the thing, six months from now I'm still going to be on Twitter trying to build this community, encourage good things, inviting friends into the conversation, and trying to do something constructive - and I believe, based on the commitment I've seen from so many great people here in Delaware, that many others will still be here doing the same. The elections will be over and life will go on - I would love it if you were working with us, but if your idea of contributing to this community is to simply attack anyone with whom you disagree, well, I guess I'll have to live with that.

I hope I've done a reasonable job of communicating with you, I hope you will take your energy and intellect and use it in a positive way on Twitter, we'd really appreciate it.