GrandCare gets “called out” by Forbes on Social Media!!

To tweet or not to tweet….that is the question….

Back in March, I spoke on a social media panel for the 2012 What’s Next Boomer Summit hosted by Mary Furlong & Associates.  I spoke ( too quickly and spastically.. or so I’m told…) on guerilla marketing and using social media to promote your brand on a panel with Stephen Chen from NewRetirement.comAndy Cohen from Caring.com and moderated by Lori Bitter from The Business of Aging. When the panel was finished, Deborah Jacobs of Forbes introduced herself and said she was in the process of writing an article for Forbes on dos and don’ts for social media from a business perspective.  She wanted to know if she could interview me on my thoughts.  Not being one to hold my thoughts back (like….ever), I eagerly agreed.

I told her about how we got the word out about GrandCare Systems, back in 2005 when the market was in its prenatal stage.  As a high tech start-up, we didn’t have a large marketing budget and we certainly didn’t want to throw money at a deaf audience. There was so much education that needed to be done on digital health technology in general, much less which one to choose.  It was a bit of lucky thing that social media was really starting to hit its prime right around that time period as well. In the early days, having more time than money and the fascinating NEW world of social media was a perfect mix.  I unofficially began what would later be coined as our social media campaign.

It was odd and exciting because there really were no rules. There was nobody out there that could really say you were doing something wrong, because no etiquette had been defined (yet).  Nobody was considered an expert, because people were still exploring and experimenting and really trying to see how the new platforms worked and how they could benefit a business.  It was the perfect time to just try marketing strategies out. I still remember when LinkedIn was new enough that you could simply send an inMail to someone (and maybe you still can do this a little bit) and they would actually respond…well…if they were actually continually checking their account. Through LinkedIn, I managed to get in touch with people that I believe would have never responded to a basic email.

This reminds me a bit of back in the mid-nineties when email was new enough that you actually READ them! Remember when forwards and chain letters were actually things that people read and weren’t embarrassed to send?  It’s all about timing and the number one thing we are aiming to gain is someone’s attention.  Getting someone’s attention will continually evolve…we will need to move to new platforms to keep them engaged and interested in what we have to say and it will be even more important HOW we say it; whether it’s a video, a picture, an insightful comment, a quote, humor, etc.

The resulting article that Deborah released today on Forbes.com was an interesting and insightful piece on what social media etiquette might be…  She did a great job and I was proud to be a contributing source.

And as far as Deborah’s grandstanding? A+ for grace!!! 🙂

How To Grandstand (Gracefully) On The Web

by Deborah Jacobs

“For Laura Mitchell, who describes herself as a “grassroots guerrilla marketer,” the key to using social media is starting an engaging conversation. In 2005 she co-founded GrandCare Systems–a Milwaukee company that provides elderly people with technology that helps them age in place.

Mitchell writes her own blog, then drives traffic to her posts by a variety of routes. For example, if she sees an article somewhere else that interests her–say on Forbes.com–she might comment directly on the FORBES site; quote the article on her own blog and link to the FORBES story; then go on her LinkedIn groups and post her comments on LinkedIn, along with a link to her blog.

“Social media is about providing information on yourself and your interests,” says Mitchell. “That includes where you work and what you do.” Whether you’re selling a product, a service or entertainment, think of your website as a store, and social media as the tool that draws people into that store, she adds. The key is to offer some insightful comment, rather than purely trying to get attention.

By using that approach when she commented on an August 2010 NPR segment, Mitchell brought her company prime billing on the Discovery Channel …

To read the entire article, click here

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