Seattle to Rochester – A Panel and A Keynote

A panelist and a keynote speaker. West coast and east coast. Two WordCamps in November. Bridget gives her recap on the experiences, the cities, the camps, her presentations, and some personal thoughts, too.

On November 4, I was on the Women in WordPress panel in Seattle; on the 18th I gave the keynote in Rochester.

My passion is to help business owners understand how to use social media, how to build relationships, and improve their ability to encourage others. I’m grateful to be invited to be part of a panel for WordCamp Seattle and to present the keynote at WordCamp Rochester.

Personal Thoughts

When I attend WordCamp US in two weeks, I will have attended 11 camps in 2017. This was a huge part of our strategy at Give to promote relationships and the product. Though I’m freelancing now, I was glad they sponsored these two trips.

After WordCamp US in 2016, Jason Knill and I decided to see part of the cities we were visiting. All I saw of Philadelphia at US was the convention center. So, I took that attitude toward these two solo trips.

In Seattle, I walked to the camp instead of rideshare. The city was under construction. It spoke to me. Even established, thriving, and beautiful places like Seattle are under construction. I am, too. Going into business for myself is scary, but I have a foundation beneath me to support this venture. It was good to be reminded of that.

In Rochester, once I realized how close we were to the Erie Canal, I ditched camp early enough to spend some time looking at it. It’s amazing to think that a very small man-made canal (I was surprised at how small it is) impacted history so greatly. It wasn’t even in use for very long, but it allowed Chicago to become the city it is today. Small things — even for a short period of time — can determine fate — fate bigger than itself. Think of that in our personal lives.

For your entertainment, I also sang the song, “Low Bridge” that I remember from Fourth Grade music class. It’s on my Facebook Timeline.

As I walked from the canal to the after party, it began to rain. It struck me as awesome that just two weeks ago, I was rained on in Seattle. Now, on the other side of North America, I was also being rained upon. I walked a mile in the rain and couldn’t have felt more content, happy, joyful, or at peace in my entire life. That moment filled my heart with courage.

Back to the main reason for this post.

A brief Recap of Seattle and Rochester

Rachel Cherry and Miriam Goldman both submitted Women in WordPress panels for Seattle so they were combined. What a great group of women. Wow. We covered the entire spectrum of feminism. The panel was informative and controversial — just the way I like it.

My favorite part of the panel was when a man asked how he could better advocate for women in the workplace.

I was happy to answer for him, for that audience, and for you, my readers.

It is very important how you characterize the concerns of women on your teams.

Let me repeat that.

To advocate for women in the workplace, be mindful of how you characterize their concerns. Click To Tweet

Adjectives matter. If we bring up that we’re offended it doesn’t mean we’re “mad.” If we have an intentional word choice, we don’t have a “tone.” Think about that. It determines how we’re seen by our peers and this effects our ability to rise in organizations both in structure, position, and salary.

The keynote was a special invitation. I was honored to be invited to travel to Rochester to share my passion for building community. Rochester has a great community.

Seeing the faces light up as I spoke, knowing they “get it,” reassured me that my passion is teaching. I not only want to work that into my business, I need to. I’m not fully me without teaching.

I felt a bit lost, honestly, until I met a woman in the bathroom. She has a cluster of stars that looks like a galaxy as a bracelet tattoo. That made it all click for me. Small encounters mean everything. That is how I pulled the talk together.

Recap of the Seattle Panel By Other People’s Tweets

https://twitter.com/CaroleOlinger/status/926924196898250752

 

Recap of the Rochester Keynote By Other People’s Tweets

 

Thank You.

I know your time is valuable. Thanks for being part of my community.

Love,

Bridget

Special Notes:

  • Special thanks to GiveWP for sending me to both camps. It’s the most robust plugin for online donations.
  • I use Postmatic to send these posts via email and to respond to comments. I’m on the $20/month plan. Check it out. (It does not support embedded content in email, to see the tweets, you’ll have to click over to the actual blog post. Thanks)

Twitter is the Best Platform for B2B Marketing: 5 Reasons Why

Twitter is the best platform for B2B marketing. It serves several marketing purposes including brand awareness, public relations, listening, content curation, and relationship building.

Twitter is the best platform for B2B marketing. It serves several marketing purposes including brand awareness, public relations, listening, content curation, and relationship building.

Watch the Video Here

Brand Awareness

Brand awareness is high-level, less-tangible, and difficult to measure. It’s almost a word-association game. I say “tissue;” you say “Kleenex.” I say “photocopy;” you say “Xerox.” You want your brand to be able to be associated with your purpose. Recognition of the logo on Twitter because of your presence is a great way for a small business to compete with the bigger operations. The big guys rarely invest in social media.

Public Relations

You have news. People want to know it. Share Promotions, sales, new ventures, employees that join in, partnerships, case studies, etc. Write on your WordPress blog everything relevant to your audience and publish it on Twitter. Every brand has the ability to publish and gain influence and audience.

Listening

Listening is the most powerful thing you can do with Twitter. It’s so important to understand who you audience is and what they want, need, and how they think. This allows you to become a better communicator — meaning, you’re communicating in a way that resonates with them.

Using Twitter Lists to Listen allows you to:

  • Pain points.
  • Correcting personas.
  • Responding.
  • Engaging.
  • Focus Group.

Content Curation

Once you’ve built your lists you now have the tool in place to curate content. People often ask me what tools I use to curate content. I tell them that I’m a People Curator — a People Broker, I say.  I curate content by curating people. It really is that simple.

Relationship Building

All business happens because of referrals and word of mouth. Think of the last time you had a new client. How did you acquire them? Think of the last time you found a new service. Did you search for them online? Google? Yelp? Almost no one does business with a total stranger. Use Twitter to build relationships. You won’t regret it.

I went into depth on relationship building in a few of my talks, most recently at WordCamp Ottawa in July of 2016.


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Use Twitter Analytics to Know Your Audience

Have you thought about using Twitter's native analytics to find out who your audience actually is?

You blog. But do you know your audience? Do you use Twitter analytics? Do you know how long should your content be? What should the grade level be? Is your well-crafted persona even correct? Let’s look at Twitter’s Analytics to see what kind of information is there.

Too long to read? Watch the Video.

In episode 82 of WPblab, Jason Tucker and I went into detail with Twitter’s own analytics which can be found at analytics.twitter.com.

Audience, Audience, Audience

Influencers need an audience. Businesses need an audience. The truth is that we all have audiences. We all influence someone. With the age of social media, we’re all publishers now. But who is that audience — exactly?

Do you find your audience and write for them or write and then find your audience? Which came first: the chicken or the egg?

Which came first: the chicken or the egg - the audience or the content? Click To Tweet

It doesn’t matter. You have the audience now. It is important to keep their attention.

Let’s Spitball Here

Let’s presume you know your audience. You’ve been using Twitter or a year or more. You have a blog. You’re publishing content.

Can you use Twitter’s analytics to help shape your content? Yes. And you should.

If you see that your audience is only 33% college educated, that should shape the types of words you use. Perhaps your content should be short form and not long. Check the readability score on Yoast’s SEO plugin or on HemingwayApp.com.

Test. Experiment. Try. Test again. Try.

I test the way I cook — it’s an experiment. It’s not formal. If someone likes it, I continue. If I hate it, I fix it. You can A/B test without heavily relying upon data.

I know what you’re thinking — that a post about analytics should be data centric. But what is data? Without context it means nothing. You can waste hours in Google Analytics or Twitter Analytics studying the wrong thing.

Brené Brown says “maybe stories are just data with a soul.

For example, 57% of my audience is interested in “fresh & healthy” lifestyle. That means I could experiment with writing about how I started using the Asana Rebel Yoga App and posting some of my Yoga photos from Instagram.

Yoga with @julie_freeindeed Dolphin, downward dog. #BridgetDoesYoga

A post shared by Bridget Willard (@bridgetmwillard) on

How will I know if it worked?

Traffic. Comments. (For example, after I started using Postmatic for email delivery and commenting, I’ve gotten a lot more comments. The comments encourage me to write more.) Comments also help give me ideas on what to write about.

You also might see those posts performing well in the Top Tweets of your Twitter Analytics.

How often should I look at Twitter’s Analytics?

I need gimmicks. So first, you need self-awareness. Then you need routine. I have Maintenance Mondays at my house. So I look at Twitter’s Analytics every Monday. For clients, I record data monthly in a Google Sheet. For myself, I go on intuition.

Start. What are you waiting for. You might be surprised.

What is branding and why does it matter to your business?

Branding has an allusive attraction -- like a magic word that you know is important but don't fully understand. Let's break it down.

Branding has an allusive attraction — like a magic word a SEO professional will use that you know is important but don’t fully understand.

Not having a MBA in Marketing myself, I had often pondered this question as well.

What is branding?

Branding is listening to a thirty-year old Michael Jackson song on the radio and recognizing the Eddie Van Halen guitar solo.

Branding is making a decision between using a restroom at a gas station or the restroom at a Starbucks.

Branding is being reminded of your beloved uncle when you smell pipe tobacco with a hint of cherry.

Is Branding A Logo?

Yes and no.

In many ways, branding is the connection of your sensual experiences. When I see a Diet Coke can, I become thirsty. Why? I remember the feel of a cold can in my hands, the sound the can makes when it pops open, the tickle down my throat, and the taste afterward. All of those memories are tied into the Diet Coke logo.

Human history is full of seals, rings, flags, coats of arms, and crests used to distinguish families, tribes, and nations. The human condition is curious; as much as we long for group acceptance, we still desire to be distinct and recognized.

Although the etymology of branding is varied, we can all imagine a rancher using a hot iron to brand his livestock. Each ranch had a distinct logo that made a permanent impression. Though originally intended to distinguish ownership, the logo reflected on the rancher, whether good or bad.

A Logo is Your Behavior

Your behavior as a company will be associated with your logo. In this regard, the branding is the logo and the logo is the brand.

In my presentation, “You Are What You Tweet,” I gave the example that the Caltrop logo had no meaning to me until I met one of their employees, Mark DeSio.

When you have a relationship with a person, the logo has meaning. Click To Tweet

In our day, branding makes a permanent impression, too. These impressions are based upon a person’s experience interacting with your company (brand) and there’s only so much of it you can control. With the introduction of social media, individual impressions gain a much greater audience.

“Every employee is your brand ambassador, your marketer, and the face of your company.” Scott Stratten: The Book of Business Awesome

Case in point. Twenty years ago I went to a pancake restaurant and there were cockroaches crawling on the table. Regardless of how many coupons they offer, how many all-you-can-eat pancake events they hold, I will never go to any of their restaurants again. That one experience made a lasting impression. Their advertising (branding) is no longer effective with me. My experience at their store made a permanent impression (branding).

Big brands, like Diet Coke, are often used as an example because we all recognize them, making the lesson relatable to a diverse audience.

How is online behavior branding?

The question always is: how will that translate for me and my business on social media?

It’s simple. Behave online the way you would want to be perceived. If you want people to think that you’re professional, behave professionally. If you want people to believe you do quality work, produce quality content.

You Have Valuable Advice, Bridget!

$30 of $100 raised

Have you been helped by the content on this site? Lattes are my favorite luxury. 😉

Thank you for being part of my community.

Love your blog, @YouTooCanBeGuru. Here's a latte. http://bit.ly/ThanksALatteBridget #ThanksALatte Click To Tweet
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Donation Total: $5

*Adapted from an article I wrote while working at Riggins Construction and published here.

WordCamp US: Friends, Rosie The Wapuu, and Contributor Day

When is a WordCamp more than just a camp? When it promotes your Meetup's logo, when you see great friends, and have an epic Contributor Day.

When is a WordCamp more than just a camp? When it promotes your Meetup’s logo, when you see great friends, and have an epic Contributor Day.

I would be remiss in mentioning two things as an aside: Bluehost sending Jessalyn Tucker to WCUS and The Gutenberg situation.

You can read Jessalyn’s blog here and her dad’s blog here. Thank you, Bluehost!

The big news is the Gutenberg “editor” (it is way more than just an editor) will be coming out with 5.0 in April (I’ve been saying this since June so I felt a bit vindicated in my analysis). If you want to keep informed on it, I’d start with following Morten and Kevin’s tweets. It is iterating (changing) quickly.

Friends

WordCamp is a celebration of the WordPress community. If you’re not making friends, come find me. We’ll be friends.

A regional camp like WordCamp US brings friends together from all over the US and the World. It was great to catch up.

Clearly, I did not take enough selfies. 😉

Rosie the Wapuu

Yes. Rosie the Wapuu was everywhere. She is not the “Lady Wapuu,” she’s the unofficial mascot for WomenWhoWP.org.

You can order your own swag thanks to James Tryon and Wapu.us here.

She’s more than a mascot, she represents a traditionally underrepresented minority in tech: women. We didn’t think she’d be part of a global movement, but it is trending that way.

You may recognize Julia from the WSJ article that had her photo.

Contributor Day

Contributor Day was the real reason for me to attend this camp; it’s an all volunteer work day for Making WordPress. Though some people are “sponsored volunteers,” we are volunteers nonetheless. WordPress is created by you for you.

I’m honored to be a Marketing Team Rep and this CD was smooth, efficient, and fun. We had over 20 new people contributing. I couldn’t have done it without Dwayne McDaniel of Pantheon. He even gave out I Make.WordPress.org stickers. It was epic.

Special Thank You

Thanks to Give for paying for my airfare and Jen Miller for sponsoring my meals and lodging. With the recent change in my career, I wouldn’t have had enough time to save for the trip.

Let’s have a frank talk about the cost of a social media manager.

The cost of a social media manager sometimes triggers sticker shock in people. But in order to evaluate cost, of any type, you need context. Let's chat.

The cost of a social media manager sometimes triggers sticker shock in people. But in order to evaluate cost, of any type, you need context. I talked about what a social media manager should cost and my experience of only making $9 and hour previously. Here’s a higher-level update.

In order to evaluate cost, you need the proper context. Click To Tweet

Let’s do some math.

Before we get to my pricing or any other agency’s pricing, let’s talk about hiring a Marketing Manager.

According to Salary.com, the median salary for a Marketing Manager in the US is $96,000 and Glassdoor puts it at $88,000 for Los Angeles, and US News reports it to be $128,000 (I’ve rounded the numbers).

An in-house social media manager’s range is much lower, which is to be expected.

“For social media manager salaries, Glassdoor’s national average was $51,613, while Indeed’s was $61,000. For a final source, we checked PayScale, which showed a median salary of $45,260.” Sprout Social 

Buffer is one of the remote workforces that is completely transparent with their salaries. Happiness Hero average around $70,000.

If you were an employer, you’d have to add at least 20% to those salaries to account for labor burden — maybe even 50% if you pay for health insurance and things like 401(k), etc.. Let’s take the BLS number of 30% employee burden.

“Overall, compensation costs among private industry employers in the United States averaged $33.26 per hour worked in June 2017. Wages and salaries, at $23.15 per hour, accounted for 69.6 percent of these costs, while benefits, at $10.11, made up the remaining 30.4 percent.”Bureau of Labor and Statistics

Here are some charts I created for the visual folks.

Marketing Manager Salary Context
Marketing Manager Salary Context
Breakdown of Salary by Resource - Annually, Weekly, Hourly, with and without burden.
Breakdown of Salary by Resource – Annually, Weekly, Hourly, with and without burden.

Shifting the Labor Burden

Labor burden is a problem for companies. I get it. I spent a good time in office management and accounting. I completely understand the cost of an employee.

One of the benefits of outsourcing to a freelancer (1099 contractor) is shifting that labor burden from your company to theirs.

Freelancers shift the labor burden from your company to themselves. Click To Tweet

Cost from a Freelancer’s Perspective

Let’s take a small diversion into what it means to be a freelancer. They take the burden of self-employment tax (20%) in addition to their own costs (expenses) which include health insurance, office equipment, utilities (like internet), office lease or co-working expenses, and more.

To my freelancer and small agency friends, I take a short diversion.

Freelancers should understand cost before they decide their rates. Click To Tweet

In this presentation by Samantha Zehngut, she gives a compelling example. What do you think you really make when you charge $100/hour? Would you be surprised that it’s only $16?

How much do you really make when you charge $100 an hour?
How much do you really make when you charge $100 an hour?

Is $20 an hour $20 an hour is $20 an hour?

The short answer is no.

You have options. Sure. You can outsource outside of the country. That is your prerogative as a business owner. Maybe some things can be automated, some outsourced in another country to help their economy, and some in-sourced.

It’s good to have options. As a business owner, you have your own budgets to reconcile with your goals.

There are options and tools. If you’re willing to bring social media in-house, you should. That’s the option that many of my colleagues recommend including Robert Nissembaum of Tactical Social Media. It’s your brand and your voice. You know it best.

“As a small business owner you ARE the face of your business. The more you are personal and the more of yourself you bring into your content, the more opportunity you provide for others to connect. The more opportunity you have to create, develop and grow relationships. The more opportunity to develop a friendship.” Tactical Social Media

So, how do you evaluate a Social Media Freelancer?

Cost is good but it’s not everything. Look at their reputation. Look at their Twitter profile. Are they full of promises but can’t produce results? No one believes in first-click leads, but we still want results.

The people I respect produce results. You should want that, too.

Get to the Point, Bridget. Why are you $1,000 a month?

The short answer is I’m worth it. The long answer is that I know what my colleagues and agencies are charging and I’m still providing a great deal. Many of my peers would ask me to raise my prices.

My Twitter Pro Package is currently priced at $1,000 a month. I know, as a person who believes passionately in accurately representing a brand that I spend a minimum of 28 hours a month on each client’s Twitter account. Though I don’t charge hourly, let’s use that as a basis for comparison and context.

By my calculations, I’m a bit more expensive than a Happiness Hero at Buffer but still less expensive than an in-house Marketing Manager at the low salary spectrum — without taking into account the labor burden.

So, what looks like a good deal to you?

My Twitter Pro Package is a great deal!
My Twitter Pro Package is a great deal!
What looks like a good deal to you?
What looks like a good deal to you?

Let's chat!

I'd love to present a solution for your and your business.

Fill out this form with as much detail as you can and I'll send back an estimate from FreshBooks.

Thank you so much for considering me.