Five Influential Boston “Tweet” Hearts

Having lived in Boston for ten years now I have had the pleasure of meeting some amazing people in every field of business. Looking at the social media and marketing scene specifically — I have met many unbelievably talented people and I could make this list miles long, but I will save the novel for another time…

And since the well-loved/hated Hallmark holiday is around the corner…here are five KICKASS “Tweet” hearts for your drooling pleasure!

1) Tamsen McMahon: A gorgeous woman who the second I met, I knew I we were going to be friends for years to come. She is not only a delight to have a coffee (although she does not drink caffeine – major warning folks) with, but one of the most intelligent and inspiring women in digital marketing here in Boston. She spoke to my MBA social media class last Fall and every student raved about her presentation on the science of social media. Yes, the scientific method is not just for chem class folks — it is actually applicable to everything you do in social media marketing. Thankfully you don’t need safety goggles this time around. Want to know more about Tamsen – check our her work for Sametz Blackstone Associates or catch her Tweeting away via @tamadear…you will not be disappointed you “checked her out.”

2) Mike Troiano: A man I describe as a mix between the Sopranos and Mad Men. You may catch him with a Manhatten in hand after toiling away for many hours at the office of Holland-Mark (HM), but otherwise he is kickin’ ass and takin’ names as the digital man of HM. I admit, I had the pleasure of working with Mike, and I can say full-heartedly that it was one of the best learning experiences of my marketing career. Sssh dont’ tellĀ  my profs of my MBA program, but Mike may have taught me more invaluable lessons than some of them did. A HBS alum, a previous ad guy, and now rockin’ the digital scene and preachin social media wherever he goes, he is a man who doesn’t just talk the talk, but walks the walk. Also found at @miketrap.

3) Janet Aronica: This young 24 year old, may be young in age, but she is wise on social media unlike most females I have met. She rocks the oneforty scene with her content strategy, marketing genius, and quirky personality that would make even the most pessimistic person crack a smile. She is a female who has come a long way in a short time and is not just a community manager…I think a new title must be made for her to truly show her unbelievable work for the startup. If you haven’t conversed with this young social media hottie yet, check her out on oneforty or @janetaronica before you miss out!

4) Alison Zarrella: When I met Alison, I almost did not recognize her because her Twitter avatar does not do this chica justice. She is not only hot (obviously), but she is a talented community manager, blogger, and now author. Did you know she co-wrote the Facebook Marketing book? If you haven’t you must pick a copy and peruse it because Facebook is not a fad, people. Neither is Twitter. But maybe I’m biased. This female rocks the social media scene in Boston helping out the Brand management of the company she works for with social strategy that is not only valuable but relevant to their target market. Aka, Alison is a Tweet heart to follow at @alison and in her many influential efforts to demonstrate she does not take her career lightly. She is passionate about it every step of the way.

5) David Gerzof: This gentleman is not only easy on the eyes (sorry he’s married, ladies), but he knows how important it is to teach students social media and how it impacts the life around them. Not only is David a social media professor at Emerson College, but he also runs Big Fish. Yes, another over achiever who likes to make sure he has no time to sit and take a breather. But hey, you may be able to catch him with a beer at a local Tweetup where he is not only easily approachable, but a pleasure to hang with. But if you cannot seem to find the time to catch him at Emerson or Big Fish or at the next local event, hit him up at @davidgerzof for a Tweet or two.

Hope you enjoyed drooling over these five amazing folks…I know I sure did!

Launching a New Site = Pulling One’s Hair Out

I launched my new site last Monday and had been planning for this launch date for a couple weeks. When launching a new site (like any product) you hope goes as smoothly as possible. Hope is the key word. Does it actually go that smoothly? Ha! That’s a silly thought.

I apparently forgot the wisdom of checking things not once, but twice or three times.What happened?

1. My Email subscription link did not work.

2. My RSS subscription did not work

3. My Facebook link went to a different “Pam”‘s page.

YIKES !!!

Then what?

1. Easy fix. Took me a minute to fix a Feedburner issue. (Thanks Lane for pointing this out).

2. Not an easy fix. Or at least not for me. Thankfully the awesome Mike Troiano alerted me to this issue. I almost had a panic attack thinking people couldn’t subscribe (when this is the way most people like to – easy and simple to do). I immediately contacted my friend who helped me set up the site. He unfortunately couldn’t tackle the issue until later in the day. I tell myself, “breathe Pam breathe!” The issue will be solved. It’s ok if you just tweeted out to the world and Facebooked about it and emailed all your friends that your site has been launched. They may come back later and subscribe….ha! Yes I freaked out. As I sit in my global branding class and freak out some more as my friend is unable to figure out the issue…I brainstorm all the individuals I know who have some web/coding smarts. I thank the many stars that I had formed a friendship with the great David Wells who solved my issue in…wait for it….10 minutes!!!!! I couldn’t have been more relieved. It may have taken all day, but that glass of wine at 11pm was well worth the wait. Thank you Dave – you rock! And you saved me a heart attack or two. Being 27, I think I am too young for that heart attack, just yet.

3. Quick fix thankfully – especially after #2.

So what did I learn? Check your links people. Check them not once, but twice! And preferably have someone go through them for you before you “officially” launch. This is what I would have normally done in a work setting…but woops!

At the end of the day all is well and I am breathing easy again.

“Breathe, Pam, Breathe….” :)

FutureM Un-Conference

Unfortunately due to my silly MBA classes, I was unable to attend any of the FutureM events earlier in the week, but I was able to hit up a couple events Thursday night. Holland-Mark‘s Digital Man Mike Troiano spoke about “Scalable Intimacy,” siting their client example Notch Session (which I must admit is some exceptional beer — especially if you want a few without that headache the next morning). The set up of this event was particularly interesting, since it was a contest where the winners received on the spot social media advice from Mike himself. (Full disclosure: I did work for Holland-Mark and loved every minute of it.)

And who were the winners?

3rd Place: Creative Crafts for Creative Kids

2nd Place: Formaggio Kitchen

And the 1st place winner is….United Way of Mass Bay!

All 3 received specific advice on areas they were having trouble in – whether it be content strategy, which social media tool to focus on (depends on where your target market it), etc. Lets just say, the crowd was not yawning, and they were not leaving early. Mike knew how to keep the crowd laughing and entertained while teaching the crowd on how best to utilize social media to your advantage. And if you are now sorry you missed this, you can see check out the full deck from the event.

And as I tweeted from the event last night: “Remember the social, not just the marketing” – Mike Troiano.

After saying “great job” and “c ya later”, I quickly ran off to Mantra where Cyberbrew had been kicked off. There was an eclectic crowd of veteran “cyberbrewers” and newbies (such as myself). Unfortunately I missed the open bar, but I did meet some interesting folks and ran into a few good friends (Jason Rush from Boston Interactive and Joselin Mane from BostonTweetUp). Familiar faces always make an event that much better. While I laughed at the men who “networked” from one female to the other, I drank my glass of wine and chatted away…until next time FutureM, you sure did rock!

The Art of Branding: learning in the classroom vs. the workplace

As I sat in my MBA Global Branding class last night, I couldn’t help but laugh. As the professor went on and on about how brands need that “one word” which consumers will recall at the drop of a hat — I thought back to my time at Holland-Mark (HM). HM coined the term “One Simple Thing” (OST), which is that one attribute that most well defines the brand. For example, as my professor asked in class “what do you think of when you hear Coca Cola?” Everyone should be thinking of the same word (unfortunately for some brands this does not always occur). Supposedly the “OST” for Coca Cola is “happiness” — did you think of that? Coke would hope so! And so would their marketers!

As I sat there in my seat, I started to realize that the concepts the professor was teaching were processes and terms that I had become well acquainted with during my time at HM. And with the hands-on learning and experience, I learned way more than reading cases and discussing them in a classroom. Now, I am not knocking my MBA education — it is definitely valuable and am happy to be a candidate for 2011 spring graduation — but learning these concepts in a work setting where you are automatically putting them to use is not only rewarding but helps one (or at least me) recall and understand things way more.

It was pretty awesome to be sitting in class and feeling that I had a firm grasp and knowledge of the topic (at least so far — it’s only been a few weeks into the semester). And I owe this knowledge and understanding to the exceptionally bright and talented folks at HM — especially Mike Troiano who if you haven’t heard speak — you should!

Now I ask you — where did your best knowledge and understanding come from?