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Social Media & Creativity


ENTREPRENEUR has an interesting article that asserts “social media is nothing without creativity” and simply from reading the headline, I got the point and have to agree, from a marketing perspective.

Not every brand using social media for some purpose needs to create interesting, unique content… there are many brands that use platforms like Twitter or Facebook primarily to provide customer service, such as your local cable company or telecom provider. Those accounts need to focus more on being effective than spinning out a constant stream of content. But many of us (and our clients, if you’re an agency type) are using social media in an attempt to achieve a greater reach and awareness from marketing messages, and creativity is going to win the attention in this game.

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The Superbowl & Social Media 2012


It’s finally here… the day we get to eat chili, hot dogs, snack on stadiums made of sandwiches, drink beer, and chat all day with our friends about the NFL Superbowl! Some neat things that are going on in the social media world:

The NFL has a GIANT command center set up, and massive bandwidth has been pumped through the stadium so people can share about the game live with their friends who aren’t fortunate enough to be there. Check this out! and look at this gallery of images from the SMCC. They aren’t just watching to see what is said – over 20 people will monitor to reach out proactively to help people with things like parking info, getting lost in the stadium, getting an answer to a question, etc. even though they have not been directly asked via Twitter or Facebook. This isn’t push marketing – this is amazing customer service! Very, very cool!

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The Future of Twitter is Here Now!


I had a bittersweet moment tonight, though ultimately it’s a victory and I’m excited to see someone do it. Two years ago, I penned a long diatribe calling for automation on Twitter of an informational (not marketing) nature, and gave several examples of what I’d like to see happen in the future. That article is here if you have an hour (joking, sort of):

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7 Habits of Highly Effective Twitterers

Originally posted February 2009 on the Mr. Tweet blog, this post has been modified slightly to reflect current information.

I lived in Texas all my life until moving to Kansas 4 years ago to get married. As a designer and business owner who depends on rich relationships for personal and business prospects, I originally felt like a fish out of water in this strange new land. Twitter has been a critical component that changed everything for me, both in terms of finding and being found by relevant folks.

As opposed to gaming the system to gain followers, I believe in constant engagement and adding value to build up a meaningful network. It works!

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Social Media in the News

You can tell that Social Media is now officially mainstream when you read the news. This week’s headlines include a Missouri state judge issuing an injunction against a teachers social networking prohibition law, social media use during natural disasters, and Britain political leaders meeting to brainstorm on how to use social media or limit others from using social media to curb civil unrest.

Missouri Court Injunction

The Missouri story is of particular interest as my husband happens to be a Missouri teacher. With a 15-year old daughter who also happens to attend his school, we were very concerned with this new law (Senate Bill 54, section 162.069) going in to effect. There was a real possibility that he would no longer be able to be “friends” with his own child. Thankfully we have a pretty good kid, but I would be lying if I didn’t admit to keeping a watchful eye on her posts and interactions.

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We Are All Paid to Tweet… Sorta

People often think I am tweeting for dollars, because I gush enthusiastically over a brand name or a particular thing on Twitter. If some people are saying that, and asking me directly about it, the likelihood of many other people thinking it but never saying it is high. So I wanted to clear up any misconceptions and also share with you our philosophy at Fresh ID on being paid to tweet (or Facebook, or whatever) and the principles we use with clients, for the curious.

At any given point in time, seeing a tweet like this from me is not rare:

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AMA KC 2011 Seminar Thoughts…

On Tuesday, May 2nd I got to attend the American Marketing Associate of Kansas City’s 2011 Seminar at Avila University. Here is my quick overview and favorite tweets from the seminar!

The American Marketing Association of Kansas City invited students, AMA members and curious professionals alike to the 2011 Seminar “The Power of Like: Facebook and Social Media Panel”.  Emceed by John Holt of Fox 4 News, the panel consisted of Brad Keown, Regional Marketing Director of Facebook, Randall Brown, Global Director of Digital Strategy at Gatorade and Jonathan Busky, Senior Director of Sales Innovation & Marketing Solutions, Cafe Mom. They provided the audience with their expertise and opinions about how social marketing is influencing today’s marketing world.

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Why Having a Facebook & Twitter Page is Not Enough.

So you decided to jump into social networking and set up a Facebook and Twitter page for your business. So what?

More and more companies are getting into social media so their customers can “find them”, but if you are not using it correctly you may be doing more harm than good. Having “35 fans” on Facebook, or only having tweeted a couple of times, does your business no favor. I mean, who really cares if you’re on social networking sites? Why should they? You must engage with others – customers, prospects, former clients, partners, vendors, and employees for example –  outside your profile to find out what they want from your presence online.
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Think Like a Rockstar

Ran across this great set of slides posted on Twitter by @mikesansone from his blog,  This is a great message about the roles played by both an Actor and an Audience.  The presentation he cites is called “Think Like a Rockstar: How to Build Fans and Community Around Your Social Media Efforts” by @MackCollier.

In the presentation, Mack draws a very interesting parallel between rockstars and companies in social media, noting that Rockstars have Fans, while companies have costumers. The idea is that rockstars are focused more on simply engaging, rather than building up a fan base.  Take Pink for example (@Pink).  Pink uses her Twitter account in mostly the same ways any individual would use a Twitter account.  She uses it to stay connected and close with friends and other rockstars and to talk about topics she is interested in.  There isn’t a lot of promotion going on.  This simple difference in motive makes all the difference when it comes to building a community of brand advocates.

You can check out the blog post here: or view the slides below.

Please tell us what you think!

Breaking: New Features from Twitter Just Appeared: TLists & Also Followed By

I’m a bit befuddled but wanted to share some mysterious features that just showed up on my screen.

The first is TLists – a similar feature to Listorious, TList appeared on my page to show others the lists I am on. I had nothing to do with getting on these, and not sure what the criteria is exactly for being on these lists. One of them said that I was one of the most listed tweeters about social media. The main site is The feature looks like this:

The second feature is a straight-up knockoff of one of Mr. Tweet’s most helpful features. If you see the picture below, it shows me who of my friends is ALSO following this user, so that I might make the decision more easily about following him myself. I see now why Mr. Tweet shut down and will be releasing another product soon.

What do you think of these new features? I’m wondering what else they’ve got cooked up that we don’t know about!

UPDATE: My friend @yoni just found another feature that I don’t have:

Intefy in Kansas City’s Just for Starters Entrepreneurial Competition Today

We are so excited about an event going on tonight here in Kansas City at the Kauffman Foundation. “Just for Starters” is a forum for aspiring entrepreneurs to share a business idea with a panel of judges, in a timed presentation. Our own Matt Bartlett will present Intefy amidst some stiff competition. According to the event information:

The finalists were selected by KC Roundtable, a local young-entrepreneur group. Four judges – Grant Burcham (Bank President), Sam Meers (Marketing Expert), Grisel Wiley (Angel Investor), and Mark Allen (Successful Entrepreneur) will critique the finalists and ask them challenging questions. At the end of the night, the audience will decide the winner.

We will be hosting the event live and talking about it throughout the night @freshid and using the #starters hashtag. If you want to attend in person, buy a ticket now, or pay at the door. Registration includes attendance, alcoholic drinks and food and it will be a wonderful time!

Find out if Muslim Ranch can beat out the Pocket Shocker; or how a brand new construction company expects to be successful in this economy. See our Intefy product in action and hear what we have planned for it. Is there a KC entrepreneur who will revolutionize collection practices in the US? You must attend to find out the answers to these exciting questions and more!

Thanks to Diana Kander for inviting us to take part in the competition and allowing us to share the event live with our online friends. We’re crossing our fingers Matt brings home the prize, but even if he doesn’t we’re pleased as peaches to be selected as a finalist, and so proud of Matt we can’t even talk about it without sounding like we’re gushing (or like we’re his Mother.) We are so grateful to have him on our team, and will be cheering for him!

Watch the action live at starting at 6:00 pm CST tonight, July 15th.

Kristi :-)

UnGeeked Elite!

ungeeked logoWe at the Fresh ID office are extremely excited for an event coming up on May 13-15 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  The event is called UnGeeked Elite and is a three day conference that highlights social media, marketing and branding forums.  The event has an excellent line-up of speakers including Olivier Blanchard, Chris Brogan, Scott Stratten, Dan Schawbel and others who are all well-known social media, marketing and branding experts.  In addition to gaining great insights from the experts, your ticket and attendance also gets you free copies of books by Chris Brogan, Sally Hogshead, Scott Stratten and Hubspot.  All of the information about the event and speakers can be found at the official UnGeeked Elite event page.

It will definitely be worth the price of admission (and if you register before May 12, you can get a huge discount)!  The event is being sponsored by SOHObiztube, a great online community that helps businesses manage brand message, value and promise.  Check it out at

ungeekedIf you are like us and can’t make it to Milwaukee but still want to attend the event, you can do so by purchasing a virtual event ticket.  Attending this way will give you access to our custom Twitterface page for the event.  You can check out the page here prior to the event. It will be password-protected for registered attendees only once the event starts.

The entire conference will be streamed using Livestream Pro, and, of course, you can always interact with those physically or virtually attending the conference via Twitter while watching the presentations.  If you purchase a ticket for all 3 days, you’ll save… tickets are available for each individual day for $99, and for the entire conference for $199. You can register for the event and purchase your ticket(s) by visiting the UnGeeked Eventbrite page.

For us, this is another little milestone in the life of the Twitterface product, which we will soon be renaming/rebranding to Intefy, by the way. This is our first virtual paid event, and the first time we will be able to have people tweet from the page using Twitter’s more secure oauth mechanism. We’re very excited, and looking forward to testing this process out with CD Vann and the (truly) Ungeeked Elite!

Never More Excited About Twitter!

Ev Williams, CEO of Twitter said to Chirp attendees (most of whom are application creators or developers), “3 billion requests a day is what you guys make to our server, that’s just api traffic… Twitter is hard to compare to other services because there’s not been anything like Twitter. There’s no other major service that is as distributed, and is really a network, with so many in-and-out points.”

Ev’s entire talk is below, but I want to explain a bit about why I, Kristi, and all of us really at Fresh ID, are more excited about Twitter than ever before. First of all, there’ve been some grumblings and murmerings because Twitter is starting to do things it feels it must, like buy or partner with mobile phone developers to make official Twitter clients for various, oft-used smartphones (such as iPhone, Droid and Blackberry.) If you watch Ev’s talk you’ll see why they’re doing this – there’s an awesome clip of a real user experience of a woman trying to find a Twitter app in the iPhone App Store. It thrills us, as user experience people, that Twitter’s doing this kind of real-world research.

But the reason why we feel excited, despite learning we are going to have to make product architecture changes as every app must use oauth and not store Twitter account data as of June 2010, is because of the number of announcements and steps they have taken that show REAL caring for the Twitter ecosystem and all of the millions of people that make up our Twitter community of users, developers, stakeholders and their own company employees. Twitter aims to grow to hundreds of millions of users, creating significant opportunities for us all. Ev made it clear throughout the week, that Twitter is not looking to take out third-party apps, but they need to do what they must for new and existing users and and rather than rehash their features or worry about what they’re doing, we as developers and marketers and entreprenuers need to step up and use their tools to innovate, not imitate. And they are in the process of giving us MORE tools than ever. was launched during the conference and they are just beginning to give us api’s for virtually everything they do, and in some cases with less limits and better results (something called user streams.) They’re doing this for themselves and the third-party apps, to enable greater creativity and more exploration of what we can do with the base architecture.

We set up a Twitterface page at the last minute, and you can still see tons of tweets from people who attended the conference and people with questions. I encourage you to check it out and watch Ev’s talk there, or below. There are some more great links below about the content and news that’s come out of Chirp, so you might want to check those out too.

If I missed any great coverage, please leave it in the comments. We’re excited our dev Joe got to take part in the event… it’s obvious he’s really energized by being with the other smart, creative people at the conference because he’s full of ideas and energy, which is yet another reason we’re more excited about the work we are doing around Twitter than ever!

Bonus Guest/Coverage/Coolness, of Black Eyed Peas fame, showed up as an unexpected guest at Chirp. Several things were neat about his appearance: first of all, he did a darling interview in which he used the word “dope” a lot and said he had to get into music so he didn’t end up like “these cats” – as he pointed to the overwhelmingly geeky developer audience. (It was funny!) Then he stayed the rest of the day, sitting and learning with everyone else, and apparently spun tunes and tweeted at an after-party as well. Here’s an interview he did with Scobleizer at the conference:

Checkin' Out Chirp… The Twitterface Way

Given the widespread debate and discussion surrounding the apparent conflict between Twitter and third-party developers following the acquisition of Tweetie, today is a very important day for both parties.   Twitter is holding the first official Twitter developer conference, called Chirp, in San Francisco, CA where, hopefully, some questions will be answered.

CaptureAs third-party developers of a twitter-based product, all of us at Fresh ID would have loved to attend the conference, but it just wasn’t a viable option. However, our developer Joe happens to live in California, so we decided to foot the bill to send him to the conference and do a little recon. To make it even more exciting, we decided this would be a great way to use Twitterface for ourselves and others who aren’t able to physically attend. Fortunately, Twitter decided to live stream the entire conference via, allowing Kristi to setup an Intefy (new name for Twitterface) page for Chirp at Thus, we have been able to sit in the office and watch the entire conference (and, of course, get nothing else done).

Having Joe on the ground at the conference has also provided a “non-Twitter official” view of the conference. When the official live stream goes off-air, we are able to switch the feed over to our developer and watch what is going on in between presentations. We also got to watch some interviews with other attendees. During the lunch break, Joe was able to interview Tyson Lundbech (@tysonlundbech) and learn more about ecoVouch, a project he is working on. It’s as if we are actually at the conference.

Though being able to attend the conference virtually is extremely cool and convenient, more important is what we are learning from the conference.  What valuable information have we gleaned from listening to Twitter Execs and fellow developers talk about the history and future of the platform?  Good question.

twttrYes, we are learning a lot about the history of Twitter, including the terrible design of the first home page, and the future of the service, such as improvements that are being made to the system.  However, there is more important information to gain from this conference than how Twitter was created and how it’s being improved.  It’s a little too early in the conference to make conclusions about the future of third-party Twitter development, but a few things have become quite clear.  Based on the first wave of speeches and presentations, it is clear that Twitter wants to be upfront about the challenges that face a company valued at over a $1 Billion. Though many will be sad to see Twitter start acting like the large-scale company it has become, the fact of the matter is that there is business to be done and money to be made.  There is no doubt that Tweetie will not be the last acquisition, as Twitter has to find some way to justify the massive investments that have been made to the company.  This is simply something that developers are going to have to swallow.

In the midst of all the uncertainty, Ryan Sarver (@rsarver), Director of Platform for Twitter, offered a ray of hope for those of us who want to continue customizing Twitter through third-party development.  Sarver, in presenting the future of Twitter and updates to the service, stated multiple times how important third-party development is to Twitter. Sarver said, “We want to learn how to work together as opposed to working against.”  Twitter thrives off third-party development that only extends the reach and capability of the service, and it is clear that Twitter Execs don’t want to see that disappear.

Hopefully, as the conference continues and the after parties kick off, the conversation will revolve around the opportunity in the future for third party developers to continue to work with Twitter and extend the value of the service with innovations and features, rather than continue to focus on the debate over Twitter’s corporate policy.

If you are sitting at work or home and want to catch the rest of the conference, you can do so at the Chirp Twitterface page.  It will be live for the rest of the conference today and tomorrow.