a Dragon enters my world

anyone using Dragon naturally speaking software? I just started using this today and am curious to see if it’ll make me more conversational in my posts. As an auditory learner this enables me to speak and say things and see them appear as quickly as I save them. Wow! This tool is pretty dang cool.

Funny, it can’t spell my name right. It has no idea what slang is. But…. It can put in an! or ? with ease …. How about a 🙂 ….

Okay I digress but it is that easy and  that fun so.… Anyone out there got some great tips for me? So far I’m really impressed.

Nimble helps a job-seeker in a snap

Yesterday showing new students how to set up and optimize their linkedIn account for online visibility, I introduced them to NIMBLE. The ability to see all online activity of a prospective company and the names of individuals working there is a powerful tool in pursuing a position in today’s world of socialization.

I showed them a recent business development opportunity I had and how I used both linkedin and Nimble to close the deal….to walk in and know were the interviewer went to school, worked, what they look like, and other individuals that work there and how they are connected to you provides a powerful opportunity to connect and build a solid foundation. Good old Google Search makes and seals the deal. Don’t discount it’s power and new search tools especially when you can connect the dots……

How I love playing detective and warming up these “cold” calls.

The look on the face of a new contact when you start off with a home run regarding something you know that you have in common is more powerful than I can express…..

One two punch …….it’s a knock out with NIMBLE.

#Nimble gives me the “googles” as in +

Reading as I do some of the group discussions within LinkedIn, (If I hear did you know you can join 50 groups one more time…….?)

One discussion keeps popping up regarding a request for a simple app that consolidates social media ……It pretty much gets the tweetdeck/hootsuite  recommendation (with a smattering of nimble from me)

Seems nobody reads the previous responses anyway so why do I????

Worse yet I have daily updates coming to my email because I am too lazy/confused/forgetful/ADD like to turn it off or set it to a weekly notification. But that is another discussion.

Nimble gets the juice though because I can now integrate Google +. How cool is that…..

but I can’t post to it…..

baby steps baby steps ….

I cry like a baby but like I said Nimble gives me the giggles….

I mean the google+



Nimble gets a bit googley

Last week Google Ventures, Mark Cuban And Others Invested $1M In Social CRM Startup Nimble. This prompted me to connect a book I had just finished by Steven Levy called In the Plex,  a great read into the culture of Google and hence the term googley. Their knack for seeing the value in start ups and key players brought us the names of youtube, blogger, doubleclick, android, sidekick, and a story surrounding the twitter start up king Evan Williams. He was the brainchild of blogger. So what does this have to do with Nimble?

Great question. What I gathered from In the Plex was Google’s ability to recognize key players early on and integrated them into their extreme love of data. Not to mention the strong desire to become a social media powerhouse. Their detailed analysis of what we do online through the acquisition of  doubleclick and its unforeseen juicy cookie provided the ability to follow your search regardless of clicking on ads. This brought the alpha and the omega to the world of search, Google’s nirvana.

Nimble is all about data. Nimble is all about the integration of social media. Nimble is in the cloud.  What an interesting mix. With Microsoft playing in the arena as well and a host of others, ( Big dog Salesforce.com and their recent acquisition of Radian 6 comes to mind) finds us in what many see as the next big area of growth.  Cloud computing and the power of chrome creating speedy access to applications in the cloud reducing our need for windows and dare I say Microsoft casues me to be a bit of a futurist……

Anyone see anything here regarding Clouds, CRM, Social, Nimble, and Google oh my!

Your thoughts?

Geek Speak Announces Solution Partnership with Nimble

Clearwater, FL – Geek Speak has announced their solution partnership with Nimble. Nimble is a Social Business Platform that combines relationship management and social engagement into an affordable web-based solution.  It integrates LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google, email contacts and conversations into one seamless, intuitive environment, empowering small businesses in today’s socially connected world to attract and retain the right customers

Created by Jon Ferrara, the founder of GoldMine, a pioneering SFA/CRM product, Nimble is the only solution on the market that integrates the “4 Cs” — contacts, calendar, communications and collaboration — to enable professionals to effectively manage the way they see, hear and connect with their company’s most important asset: their business contacts.

“The problem today is our contacts and our communications are in too many places,” said Jon Ferrara, CEO of Nimble. “Between IM, text messaging, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Skype and email, we can’t keep track of it all. Trying to manage all of this in eight different tabs on your browser isn’t the solution. We created Nimble to solve our own needs and we’re bringing it to the world to help small businesses solve theirs.”

Pat Huston, Owner of Geek Speak, states, “We are excited to announce this new solution partnership with Nimble.  We are pleased to offer our customers Nimble which unifies email, calendar and social channels in one application.  This will allow our customers to easily see all of the communications made with their contacts no matter where the conversations took place.”

Nimble is the next evolution in relationship management – a social relationship manager that makes it fun and easy to nurture personal and business relationships.


Social CRM Nimble gives a push

Jack be Nimble …..

OK sometimes I can be old school. More push oriented. Maybe that is why I like linkedIn more than the rest of the performers in the social media circus. I like to look for prospects and know what they are up to. I like to play detective. Not long ago I had an interview where all the interviewer had was my resume. Through Nimble I knew everything about him. Where he lived, who he was married to, even that he had just bought a smartphone and was thrilled with his android based purchase. The beauty was I had all that information in one place.  QUICKLY I might add and I could see how socially adept he was. I got the job

Nimble showed me a few things about my employers, namely the schools I work for as a consultant, trainer, and instructor of career services, student success and linked in for business. This tool in conjunction with all my contacts opens up the world in a way that only an ENTJ could love.  If you are interested in what you can do with this please I am here to help. I would love to share with those that are interested.


Read more at Chief Marketing Geek



Practice safe on-line networking: how to secure your Facebook account

Facebook has again made a change in privacy settings. Without much warning and more often none at all we are faced (no pun intended) with a dilemma. How do I secure my settings once and for all? Haven’t we all heard the saying “set it and forget it,” from Ron Popeil? I think we can all agree that privacy is paramount. More importantly with today’s ever changing environment we need to put a system in place that is not affected by what facebook does with today’s or tomorrow’s flavor of privacy. Some say get a life. I say set a list. With that in mind I think we can all agree on the following.

Today privacy has never been more relevant regarding personal facebook accounts and the people that peek. Today’s people are recruiters as recent studies show that 75% of them are required to query a potential applicants social standing online.  So what does that mean to you? Further analysis shows that 70% of potential applicants are being rejected due to online profiles. This sounds rather dire but the good news is that 85% of potential applicants are being hired. What is a profilee (sic) to do? Quite frankly, it seems the odds are better if you have one than if you don’t, so let’s look at how to project the best image without compromising engagement.

First things first let’s lock down facebook. What fun is it if you have to pretend that every potential viewer is either your Mom or your boss? No worries here boss, as you need to create lists to protect who sees what. Easy to do and fun to navigate. Can anyone here say restricted family, work related or students? These are lists I have within facebook. None of them see my friends, my posts, my pictures or my videos. They might as well not even be friends as they see no more that those that aren’t.  So why would I friend them? Voyeur that I am (and you are too) I am curious as to what they let me see. More than likely they have friended me and I have no reason to say no and hurt their feelings. It also allows me to connect broadly and send personal messages to the list. “Students, don’t forget to look your best for the graduation photos this week,” is an example of how I use the list for mutual benefit.  Lists are easy and lists are fun. Find them under account settings and then the subheading edit friends.

Tag you’re it and find me through search engines needs to go too. Easy to do and found under privacy settings. Facial recognition is tricky to find but one can navigate to it by asking our friend Google. Simply type, “How do I remove facial recognition in facebook?” in the search engine bar. Be careful of third party applications and change your passwords regularly. Please don’t use the same ones for work and banking that you use for social profiles. If I know where you work (because you told me in your profile settings and I didn’t need to friend you to see it) I might be able to hack your account. So be smart and get a policy regarding social media and how to protect yourself. This can apply at home as well as at work. I can help. To quote a bankruptcy attorney that appeared regularly on TV, “This is all I do and I do it well.” I am here to help you set policy that matches your culture. I teach employees and students how to do just that.

Pat Huston is the Director of Education at Geek Speak LLC. She can be found at pathuston.com

Somewhere over the rainbow bluebirds fly: Use Twitter to attract followers and get your message out

Now that you’ve chosen a target market, you want to more about what they want, and tell them about what you do. If your customers use Twitter, it can be a great listening post. Plus a tool to tell your story. If they don’t, move on to a more useful tool.

Follow you: One of your main goals is to create a community around your business or brand, and Twitter can help you build a group of followers.

Buy, buy, buy? Think about the people you have decided to follow. Why did you follow them? Did all of their tweets say, “buy my stuff, buy my stuff, buy my stuff”? Probably not. You followed people who are up to date on your industry or your customers’ industry. You chose people who are influential with your customers. They share useful information. They answer questions. Other people will follow you for the same reasons.

Smart gal/ smart guy! Your goal is to establish yourself as a knowledgeable expert in your field, someone whose opinion is worth listening to. Spend time looking online for unique and interesting information about your customers’ industry. Talk to people at meetings and trade shows. Don’t just repeat the news, use your expertise to add value. If your tweets are interesting to your target market, the number of people who follow you will increase. You should send 80 to 90 percent informative tweets, and 10 to 20 percent relevant promotions for your product, service, or event.

Relevant promotions: use your tweets to move people to your web site. Tweet about white papers or ebooks they can get. Release a new blog post or podcast. Link to a video demonstrating a new product. Invite followers to an event. Point them to a landing page with sale prices. Announce a contest.

Read all about it! Twitter is an important tool for public relations. Listen to, comment and build relationships with media writers before you need to promote a new product or tell your side of a story.

Use Twitter Search. Go to search.twitter.com and enter terms like ‘St. Petersburg Times’, ‘Tampa Tribune’, or ‘Tampa Bay Business Journal’. Look for listings of writers who cover areas that are important to you or your customers. If you see they have a question you can answer, respond quickly, respond only when your information is a good fit for their need, and include contact information in your response.

Time savers: Twitter can take up a lot of your time, but it shouldn’t. Organize your contacts and manage your tweets with tools like TweetDeck. TweetDeck (tweetdeck.com) lets you connect with contacts in Twitter, along with Facebook and LinkedIn. The most important advantage is that you can organize your followers and tweets into groups and keep track of them in separate columns. You can create a column to track tweets that mention you or your company. Set up another column that holds only direct messages (DMs) from followers to you. A column for tweets from industry leaders, and a column for important customers. And you can tweet and reply to tweets from the tool. Go to their site and see it for yourself.

Security! Security!Security! Be sure to activate the secure connection option, which encrypts your communication with Twitter. This gives you more protection from hackers in a Wi-Fi environment. Make the change in your account settings. Do it now!

Bob Gaynor Marketing Director at Geek Speak LLC is a contributing writer for SCORE Pinellas 115 in Clearwater, Florida.


Social media 101 for employees: Building a culture of collaboration

Customer service training experts predict employees will bolt as the economy improves. Why? Consider the following professional development scenarios these past few years. Conflict resolution training for dismal if any merit increase, team building skills within a survivor (as in reality TV) mentality, a collaborative approach to long hours, and self provided technology training through a company smart phone that never lets you stop working. Couple this with the death of any formal company training, perks, conferences or soft skills enhancements other that the yearly round up for changing your health benefits. Funny, they always seem to cost more, provide less and come with a strict time frame which includes a window of opportunity that narrows every year.

So big business I got something for you. A perk at minimal cost that keeps on giving and provides you with happy employees willing to contribute to the company social media campaign through their personal accounts. (We can teach the under 30 crowd how to tweet if they help us boomers with loading and using smart phone apps.) Amazingly, the soft benefits are even larger. A culture of collaboration develops as departments discover their social media niche and share with others. The no fb mentality goes the way of no personal calls at work. All benefit by creating the KLT (know, like, trust) culture that social media breeds. This follows with a corporate policy and an ad-hoc selection of social media experts from an informed base of company professionals. Oh, don’t forget to train the President. 🙂

Mr. Livingstone, I presume: How to use LinkedIn to search for contacts

Now that you’ve chosen a target market, start looking for contacts. If your target customers are involved with LinkedIn, it’s a great place to look for decision makers, business managers, and information about their companies.

Where the money is. Why did Willie Sutton rob banks? “Because that’s where the money is.” That’s true for LinkedIn if your target market is businesses. More than 40 percent of North American users are from large companies (10,000 employees or more). Another 30 percent work at companies with 1,000 to 10,000 employees. About 16 percent are C-level, VP or Director. Executives at all of the companies in the Fortune 500 are members. Nearly 2 million companies have LinkedIn company pages.

Join ‘em. Join LinkedIn groups (up to 50) that are relevant to your industry and your target market’s industry. See what questions they are asking. Answer questions to show your expertise. Post informative updates (90%) and focused offers (10%). Follow the top influencers identified by the group. For really important groups, become a top influencer yourself. Being a member of a group also makes it easier to invite group members to be part of your network.

Want to get extra attention and influence? Start your own group. Invite members and start conversations. Ask questions. Promote your events.

Hunt for customers using the LinkedIn Advanced Search feature.

Places to go. Focus on the geography where your customers are, or where you want them to be. Choose entire countries, or look for contacts within a given distance of a postal code.

People to see. Search for contacts by job title, industry, and company name. Or look for individuals by name or key words in their profiles. LinkedIn lets you look for people who worked at companies in the past – they can be a good source of insider information. Armed with this information, you can learn about contacts in advance – no more “cold” calls or mailings. Remember: the more people in your extended network, the more people you can see.

Besides looking for customers, this is a good way to look for new employees.

Things to do. Look for your contacts’ events. Events are good opportunities to meet potential customers off-line … you know, face to face. Help them know, like and trust you. On your home page, go to ‘Search Events’ and enter Tampa, Florida, or another geography. Pick a time frame and an event type and click ‘search’. Sign up for the ones that look good and go!

Extra! Extra! Subscribe to LinkedIn Today to get current news from industry groups that are important to your business. Post links to relevant articles and make insightful comments. Share news with your company colleagues.

Reach out. Save your search, and export results to spreadsheet or contact manager software. Start building your relationships and revenue. Answer group questions. Invite people to join your network. Promote your events. Post updates and comment on other people’s posts. Go out and shake hands. Use the search information for a phone, email or mail campaign. Boldly go where you haven’t gone before.