On Your Own But Not Alone


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A presentation at the IABC St. Louis conference on social media, March 25, 2010

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  • A little about me – a native St. Louisan, grew up in Soulard, two blocks from the brewery, before it was chic.Moved to Phoenix in late 2002, where I was vice president of corporate communications for Phelps Dodge. Not a car dealership … a copper-mining company. Spent most of my career in St. Louis – Globe-Democrat, Southwestern Bell, Fleishman-Hillard, Mallinckrodt
  • How long have you been on your own? Less than a year? One to two years? Three to five years? More than five years?
  • The number of self-employed workers has soared in recent years.Trend began after the downturn of the late 1980s.Today, 20 to 23 percent of U.S. workers are operating as consultants, freelancers, free agents, contractors or micropreneurs.There are about 25 million small businesses in the U.S., and nearly 80 percent of those businesses are one-person shops.About 2,100 solo PR 10 percent of PRSA members
  • If you think this is a temporary gig between jobs, it won’t go well. If you’re serious about it, this is your job now.Time, investment, thought … lots of thoughtOn the other hand, don’t think it to death. Have a good business plan, then, go and start doing.Know who you are, what you have to offer. You may be a specialist, and if so, go for it! I’m a generalist – writing, editing, media training, media relations, financial communications. Be a lifetime learner … social media can help you do that
  • Every piece of business I’ve had has come from a network, and almost all of it has come from St. Louis.I worked here from 1975 to 2002, so I have lots of contacts here. They have been invaluable to me in pointing business in my direction.If you’re hoping to hear that I make money from my Web site and my blog, it’s not the case. But I still have found value in doing both, which I’ll explain later.
  • And of course, your own stapler if at all possible!I’m fortunate in this regard. Our kids are gone, and the house we bought already had a bedroom converted to an office, with a built in desk, bookshelves, cabinets and file drawers.
  • You need a regular place to work that you control, or at least where you can concentrate. If you don’t have one, look for alternatives.
  • Put together by Brian Solis.Mind-boggling array of social media toolsSo how do you choose?
  • This is what I landed on – a blog, a Twitter account, Linked In, and Facebook
  • Didn’t want to be out of touch.Didn’t want to be the guy who says, “I don’t care what everyone is eating for lunch.” I don’t need Twitter.Wanted to know how these things work so I can talk intelligently about them with clients.
  • On Your Own But Not Alone

    1. 1. On your own but not alone<br />Social media and the solo PR practitioner<br />Peter Faur, Owner<br />RightPoint Communications, Phoenix<br />March 25, 2010<br />
    2. 2. What high school did I go to?<br />
    3. 3. A lonely life?<br />
    4. 4. Get used to it<br />Source: Census Bureau, National Association for the Self-Employed<br />
    5. 5. Ingredients for success<br />A marathon, not a sprint<br />Based on “How to Succeed in the Age of Going Solo,” WSJ, Feb. 8, 2010<br />
    6. 6. Ingredients for success<br />Join a network, create a network<br />
    7. 7. Ingredients for success<br />Have your own space<br />
    8. 8. Ingredients for success<br /><ul><li> Have your own space</li></li></ul><li>Ingredients for success<br />Have your own space<br />Co-working<br />Gangplank<br />A St. Louis version<br />Have Boingo, will travel<br />Work from virtually any coffee shop, McDonald’s, etc. <br />
    9. 9. Ingredients for success<br />Think like an entrepreneur<br />A business plan<br />A mission statement<br />Ask for, and get, what you’re worth<br />Walk away sometimes<br />Good practices<br />Good records<br />Good accountant<br />Good legal advice<br />
    10. 10. Now for the social media part<br />
    11. 11. How to choose what to use<br />
    12. 12. The real question<br /><ul><li> What are you trying to do?</li></li></ul><li>What I’m trying to do<br />First of all, learn how social media work<br />
    13. 13. What I’m trying to do<br />Have outlets to promote myself as a thoughtful professional<br />Display my writing, thinking on the blog<br />LinkedIn endorsements<br />LinkedIn discussion groups<br />Twitter postings to promote blog<br />Facebook postings<br />Always looking for the right audiences<br />
    14. 14. What I’m trying to do<br />Connect with thought leaders in social media<br />Chris Brogan – e-mail <br />Gini Dietrich<br />Charlotte Shaff’s story<br />Because of what they do, these folks are approachable and responsive<br />Don’t wear out your welcome<br />
    15. 15. What I’m trying to do<br />Learn how the media use social media<br />@12SPORTSARIZONA Need a great pass rusher, more depth in secondary, and a fountain of youth for Kurt Warner 5:31 PM Jan 18th via TweetDeckin reply to 12SPORTSARIZONA<br />Direct interaction with reporters, editors - @fayfredricks<br />An insightful blog entry: Valley PR blog<br />
    16. 16. What I’m trying to do<br />Learn how my clients might use social media<br />One application to date: an internal blog<br />Another application – social media section in a crisis communications plan for a university<br />Monitor what’s being said about clients – Google alerts, collecta.com<br /> Side benefits from social media involvement<br />Learned about plug-ins<br />Learned how to get the technology platform for free<br />Learned enough to overcome IT anxieties<br />
    17. 17. Using time wisely<br />The Brogan formula<br />¼ time listening – “Grow Bigger Ears”<br />½ time commenting, communicating (Twitter, leaving comments on blogs of interest, etc.)<br />¼ time creating content<br />It takes me an hour to write a blog, so that would be four hours a day<br />
    18. 18. Using time wisely<br />The Dietrich formula<br />One hour a day<br />Get an account at www.socialoomph.com<br />15 minutes finding, scheduling Tweets about interesting articles, news (alltop.com works)<br />10 minutes scheduling self-serving Tweets<br />10 minutes on Tweetdeck finding items to retweet<br />5 minutes on ping.fm setting up distribution of content to other social networks<br />10 minutes answering questions on LinkedIn<br />10 minutes responding on Facebook and Twitter <br />
    19. 19. My formula<br />Write three/four blogs a week – 1 hour each<br />Skim Alltop, RSS feeds each day (15 minutes)<br />Use Stumbleupon to schedule tweets to promote my blog entries (< 5 minutes)<br />Visit Twitter via Tweetdeck two-three times a day – spend 10 minutes reading, commenting, retweeting<br />Visit Facebook once a day – comment as needed in 10 minutes<br />Visit LinkedIn groups twice a week for 15 minutes – comment as I can add value<br />About two hours a day in all<br />
    20. 20. Benefits of social media for you<br />Only you can decide<br />Need to know what they can do, so you might as well use yourself to learn<br />