Ryan Stephens Marketing

11 Essential Blog Posts for March 2009

Just a reminder: These are blogs that I enjoyed reading, for whatever reason. Perhaps they were valuable for me, merely entertaining, thought provoking, were about something I’m interested in (e.g. social media) or potentially something I thought my tribe would enjoy. As always, I would love feedback. Did you catch these posts during March? Did any of these resonate with you? What are some of your most recent favorite reads? Even better, what’s your favorite thing YOU wrote during March? Share it with me in the comments section.

-Somehow these first two posts are from February, but entered my reader in March. That’s why they’re included here-

Make Better Presentations: The Anatomy of a Good Speech – Chris Brogan
I consider myself a pretty solid speaker (at least in the past, it’s been 6 months or so now since one), but I’m always looking to improve and learn from others, and the framework they approach speeches with. Chris offers some solid tips to get you started, but the real value for me was in his examples and using those to think a little different and/or hone your approach.

7 Ways to Land Great Consulting Work While in Between Jobs – Monica O’Brien (Personal Branding Blog)
It’s no secret I do consulting on the side of my full-time gig. Some of you probably do to. If that’s the case Monica provides some solid, applicable advice you can put into action today. It’s quick, dirty and honest and if you can do all seven, chances are you’ll succeed. In fact, she’s doing so well she’s turned down full-time job offers and just kept her consulting LLC.

Can we Figure out What the Rules are First Before we Start Breaking Them – Mack Collier (The Viral Garden)
Mack brings up some excellent and salient points about how everyone is jumping to conclusions about “new things” occurring in the social media space. It’s a great piece because he pushes back on these people by tactfully explaining that the space is still to new, and all the people moaning are the same ones wanting these companies to dip their toes in the water. Interesting collision here.

The Marketing of Unmarketing, A History & Primer – Jason Falls (Social Media Explorer)
This is a longer post, but possibly my favorite of the month. Jason gives a quick history of the transition from old marketing to new marketing, shares some great quotes from some thought leaders like Jeremiah Owyang, Hugh MacLeod, and Chris Heuer, and offers some great tips for becoming an unmarketer. Finally, he concludes with some great tips of his own and the slides from a presentation he did on the subject.

Walls of Seperation – David Armano (Logic + Emotion)
Really intuitive post from David about 7 different walls of separation business inadvertently put up between themselves and their customers. If you’re living the in the corporate space it would do you could to make sure you’re not letting any of these walls hinder your companies’ ability to be in tune with customers. I think most often I witness ROI infatuation and Ivory Tower Syndrome.

Four Old-School Reasons Why You Can Thrive in this Recession – Sonia Simone (Copyblogger)
A lot of my friends are finishing up school and worried about the recession. Some are having a tough time finding jobs, others are opting to get another degree. Sonia offers some great examples of why we can (and should) succeed with social tools and an entrepreneurial approach. “The human being is an inherently creative, flexible, resilient creature.”

The Future of Recruiting – Brian Starbuck (Cheezhead)
A lot of my readers are making the transition from college to the “real world.” Even if you’re not, chances are you won’t be doing the same thing 5 years from now that you’re doing today. For that reason I think it’s important to understand and be prepared for current trends are in interviewing. Brian discusses precision questioning (and it’s not easy to tackle) so if you have interviews in your near future have a listen; be prepared.

What are the Top 10 Social Media Questions on Business People’s Minds – Polly Pearson (Polly Pearson’s Blog)
Because I work in a position that affords me the opportunity to work with social tools and with people and clients who are often behind the curve, it’s important to know what kinds of questions they may have (even if they don’t say them aloud) so that I’m prepared to answer them. To be proficient in “social media,” I’d suggest making sure you can answer the questions Polly’s mentioned for a wide variety of clients and circumstances.

20 Blog Topics to Get You Unstuck – Chris Brogan
I don’t write unless the inspiration strikes and I feel I have something to say, but some people adhere to strict schedules where they publish a certain amount each week. Either way, most people get stuck from time to time and Chris’ questions and fill-in-the-blanks should help spur an idea or two.

How to Really Kick Ass – Valeria Maltoni (Conversation Agent)
10 great reminders on how to kick ass, and you won’t be surprised to find that most of them deal directly with your audience/readers/consumers/fans, but there’s a few gems like “stay curious and interesting,” and “get out of your comfort zone” aimed specifically at you as well. Reading these and learning from Valeria and the others she mentioned will help you ascend the ass-kicking ladder.

Why Aren’t You Really Good at Graphic Design? – Seth Godin
No, in fact I’m awful at graphic design. If you’re like me and you have trouble with spacial relations, are borderline color blind, etc. and graphical design, creating power points, etc. is your weak spot consider checking out the resources Seth’s put together. Let’s stop making excuses, okay?