And yes I’ll admit perhaps a little petrified. I’m naturally shy I like to tell people (although no one believes me for some reason). Once out of my shell, I’m fine (meaning loud and sarcastic) but until then I’m a silent bundle of nerves. Now, I call myself a social media marketer, I act like a social media marketer, I think I dress like a social media marketer and I’ve signed up to all the tags of the social media marketer (Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, Flickr, YouTube, StumbleUpon, Digg, etc). So with all these online based credentials, I figured the very least I could do was actually be a Social Media Marketer. In pursuit of this I knew I had to get out there, get known, become famous or at least infamous in the process and spread the word: Will Market For Moderate Fame and hopefully a little Pocket Money too (Vegas keeps calling and I need to answer).
Enter, in perfect timing, an invite to a social media marketing networking party. Invited by an unknown member of the Facebook universe (Fate?? Is that you?), I happily RSVP yes. I was excited, elated and looking forward to my first networking party. I was also bragging (‘promoting’ in marketing terms) about the event to anyone who’d listen. As the event neared, however, in came the nerves. First day of school nerves. Say no one wants to talk to me? What if I say the wrong thing? What if I’m not dressed right mommy!?
On the eve of the event, I easily found reasons not to go-what if my roommate needs me? (She didn’t) What if my family calls and needs my help for something urgent? (They didn’t ). Alas, I had to banish all negative thoughts and focus on only the uplifting ones.
Success is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Susan Jeffers, 1988
It’s what got me through many public speaking engagements and my 20+ attempts at snowboarding upright (I am now successfully a beginner snowboarder, yay!)
Also, the plan was to go to this event solo. No wingman on this mission and definitely no booze. Having had only a small salad for dinner, I couldn’t have a drink without the fear of it going right to my head or rather to my big mouth. Saying something silly, although typically amusing, was not on the agenda this evening. I needed to be clear, concise and 100% me (…well maybe with just a hint of leftover champagne from breakfast. Mimosas don’t drink themselves you know).
The event was scheduled to start at 6:45pm. Arriving promptly @ 7:30 I quietly slipped into the back and listened in on the presentation. The topic being discussed, no surprise, was social media marketing. The speaker was saying that this area of marketing has only really been around for the past 3 or 4 years and that even so, many people out there were claiming to be social media marketing experts (those phonies!). The speaker then went on to explain a few social media tools- Facebook ads and pages, wordpress and twitter. All familiar subjects for a real expert social media marketer like myself. A few new facts were shared and discussed and then we were led to the networking part of the evening. The set-up was similar to speed dating like you would see on TV. We had approx 2 minutes to get to speak to someone after which we were expected to move on to the next person. There was no particular order and we were free to speak to whomever we chose to go to next.
Networking Results: Real estate contacts for my new downtown condo, free dating coaching from HappySexyYou.com , salsa dancing lessons next week and laser skin care therapy on the weekend. So my success rate? Social Media wise – undetermined but Socially – a success! I should have a new place, charm and grace, a swing in my hips and clear skin by the weekend. Nice.
With my first social media networking event successfully completed I have to assume I’m not just a Social Media Marketing expert, but now I’m a certified Social Media Marketing expert. With my newly acquired certification in tow, I move on to my next event for a new client – a colleague’s online store. As her Social Media Marketer, I have to get out there and meet the people, check out the products and come up with innovative ways to get people to buy them. I also need to get the store name out there (SimplicityStore.com by the way).
This sales event was scheduled to start at 12 noon. Arriving promptly @ 2pm I registered, got my free pen and got to work. With the experience gained from the last event, this one was a breeze. I came, I saw, I conquered. I also sampled the products (surprisingly delicious energy drinks, great skin care products, tasty snack bars and vitamin supplements), spoke to the vendors and was inspired to think of several innovative ways to get these products out there. I look forward to putting these ideas into practice.
Checking my inbox the next day, I received a new invite for a rock climbing event in the next week. I’ve never rock climbed before but as recent history has helpfully taught me, I’ll surely be an expert after this event. Admittedly a self proclaimed one but I’m sure I’ll figure it out on the way up. Nerves safely days away, I excitedly RSVP yes.
Bring it on.