Archive for the ‘Week #7’ Category

My New Social Mobility

Posted: March 11, 2011 in Week #7

Today will go down in history as the day I switched from iPhone to Android. As an avid Apple user, you can imagine the guilt that is currently setting in. I remember making my first switch from PC to Apple six years ago when I purchased a MacBook. When I dumped my old Blackberry Pearl for an iPhone in 2008, I immediately felt the significance of how connected we are as a society to the web. The biggest eye-opener for me was how well I embraced social media. I was connected in ways I never imagined. No matter how far away from home I was, I had Facebook and Twitter with me 24/7. Despite the success I felt with my iPhone, the thrill was short lived. Apple’s dedication to putting a new phone out on a yearly basis quickly made me feel shortchanged.

With the release of the 3GS and the recent iPhone 4, my iPhone 3G began a slow deterioration in speed and was constantly giving me problems. Using apps like Facebook and Twitter turned into a lengthy process that was both irritating and inconvenient. I found myself sitting on the computer more than I had in years just to stay connected. I have no complaints about keeping my laptop close for the sake of my Social Media for Journalists class, but many people have been telling me what a great experiment it would be to actually attempt an entire week’s worth of assignments on a mobile device. Until today, my response had been, “If I had an iPad it would be a different story.” With the hours we spend talking and texting, who in their right mind wants to sit and try to type a lengthy essay such as this on a cell phone! Well, I’m here to prove that it is possible and that starting Monday, the experiment will begin.

With my new light-speed smart phone—which includes WordPress, Facebook, Tweetdeck, and LinkedIn apps—I am thrilled with a new challenge to allow my laptop to collect dust for one week. I want to allow myself to write blog posts in the environments of my choice. What better way to take a long hike through Muir Woods and use the scenery as inspiration to further my quest of using social media to make myself a better person—provided there’s reception.

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I’ve expanded my social media horizons this week by signing up for LinkedIn. I followed Shari Weiss’s (my social media guru) informed blog article, 10 Steps to Update your LinkedIn Profile for Maximum Find-ability, and there I was, a new LinkedIn member. From choosing a profile picture, to updating work experience, and making my first connections, the art of becoming a member of LinkedIn is a process that takes time and careful thought. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, LinkedIn does more than just connect you with friends and family. As Shari states, “LinkedIn is the world’s LARGEST online professional network that can help you gather business intelligence, connect with trusted contacts, and pinpoint individuals who can help build businesses and careers.”

Here is a summary of Shari’s 10 easy steps to maximizing our LinkedIn profiles.

  1. Choose a quality head shot. Pose + color = standing out from the rest.
  2. Think of your headline as your PERSONAL BRAND Statement
  3. Make your “update” establish your reputation as the GO-TO-SOURCE for information/support in your expertise.
  4. After downloading a résumé, always PROOFREAD what LinkedIn posts. Don’t rely on auto-fill to make you stand out from the masses.
  5. Seek out recommendations and treat them as professional currency.
  6. Whether you seek connections cautiously, or are an aggressive “Lion,” think critically about who you connect with.
  7. Increase “Find-Ability” by making your “websites” stand out for their originality. Don’t rely on default titles like “My Website,” “My Blog,” or “My Company Website.”
  8. If linking Twitter and LinkedIn, think carefully about keeping your persona professional.
  9. Personalize your URL. If your name is taken, which is usually the case, adding an abbreviation for the city you live in, i.e. http://www.linkedin.com/in/williamriverasf, can add a professional touch.
  10. Last and most importantly, write a summary that is loaded with key words to ensure a powerful branding statement. The three-paragraph format with effectively maximize who you are and how you communicate.

After following these steps, I was able to have a better understanding of why LinkedIn is a powerful online tool. It’s helping me make “real” connections with people that have the potential to take me places I couldn’t have fathomed in the past. As my social media paradigm expands to reflect my personal growth, I found LinkedIn to be a natural progression. I find it ironic that my online/offline persona are merging into the same person. Whereas before, I was creating an online personality that reflected only about 50% of who I really am, now I see the importance of showing one’s true self to fully benefit from what social media has to offer.

To add me as a connection of LinkedIn, please click here… http://www.linkedin.com/in/williamriverasf



LinkedIn Can Change Your Life

Posted: March 10, 2011 in Week #7

“I am always astounded when people tell me that they do not “need” LinkedIn.  That’s crap.  Unless you live under a bridge and plan to keep it that way, everybody can benefit from using LinkedIn.”
—Tara Wagner, writer of My Love Affair with LinkedIn

That’s pretty much the consensus of everyone I’ve spoken to over the past year. Then, why until now had I not signed up, you ask? Well, I never thought LinkedIn was for a person like me. I don’t have a college degree, I’ve never worked in a corporate environment, and I’ve spent years hiding behind my résumé. With the exception of a couple jobs as a restaurant server, and a once-in-a-lifetime gig assisting an established and popular interior designer, I’ve spent the majority of my adult life as a self-employed artist. At 28, I’m working to narrow my career trajectory to one clear-cut path, and my past work experience doesn’t reflect where I’m headed. So now I’ve turned to the social media universe for much needed instruction and inspiration. LinkedIn is clearly that crucial next step.

Dan Coerber, a close friend of mine, recently landed his dream job through LinkedIn. His story is rather incredible and I thought I’d share it with you to prove that LinkedIn is changing lives. Here’s how it all went down.

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