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Look for craggy rocks and cellar doors

3 Jan
Looking for craggy rocks and cellar doors.

Photo credit: Jellaluna

Always loved the quiet of cellar door. It’s a phrase that along with the proper typeface can fill a space on its own. I’m looking to fill less space in the coming year, to fine tune writing and curation.

We need to hear our own ideas and slowly roll them out. Let others scanning at a less-fevered pace enjoy, be inspired and springboard with their best return offering.

I’m full of the scandle whistle, full of the train-wreck pace of the presidential horse race, so full of television punditry, reality and commercial format. I’m looking for quarter notes, very high or low gears, a master’s stroke or gesture in slow-motion.

Looking for craggy rocks and cellar doors.


3 favorite bloggers at this moment

13 Apr

Who are your favorite bloggers?

Who are your favorite bloggers?

What’s my philosophy on blogging?  Well, since you’ve asked, I read bloggers who deliver the goods. I read bloggers who provide very detailed knowledge on one subject, can toggle to an alternate subject for variety, and are very good writers. I get excited when my RSS reader signals a new entry from a short set of writers.


We all love great design, and you can Wiki or churn info from just about anywhere, but really skilled writing stands and delivers. Many bloggers and sites can have excellent SEO, but when I arrive and find dull, dated or jargon-filled content, I exit fast.


My three favorite stops at the moment:


Live Laugh Learn Lead – Marcia Conner speaks passionately on two topics – social media and education (informal and experimental learning). I learn something new each time I visit her site, and I also regret that I have not attended Foldschool. Great Tweets, as well – chock-full of ideas.


Iowahawk – Funnier than corn. Dave Burge has the ability to span politics and love of hot rods. Great ear for dialogue and slang tuned in Iowa – go figger. Plus, I’m a charter member of Operation Magneto having contributed a Toledo Mud Hens magnet to a PSYOP unit Humvee that is chillin’ as the ‘wildest whip in Baghdad.’ 


Michael Yon – Meet my No. 1 pick in the beat writer fantasy league draft. Michael Yon is a military reporter known for tough embeds, dangerous subjects and an unexpectedly light touch with people swimming in stress. He lets stories lengthen and unfold, and shoots solid photography to boot. With no embedded team of editors to layer extra opinion, Yon will leave spare photo captions and give your eyes room to decide.


What are your top three?


Social Media in financial planning – the sweet spot and the sweet gap

4 Feb

twodollarsRichard Telofski at Kahuna Content highlights a current sweet spot for financial planners. The demographic group of interest – males between the ages of 31 and 50 – is a market segment to target for future growth. However . . .


“We found that there is an overwhelming overlap, a very high correlation, between the demographics of a large proportion of blog readers and the demographics of a market segment that many financial planners have told us they covet. Yet, these financial professionals are largely absent from the blogosphere. I find this quite astounding.”


Addressing that gap? Telofski estimates that far less than 1 percent of the almost 58,000 U.S. financial planners blog.


One member of that small group is Ciaran McKeever, a Certified Financial Planner from Douglaston, New York. McKeever offers his “two cents” on a variety of topics from Roth IRAs and mutual funds.  Scan the dynamic Life Skills Network, that includes Frugal Dad, for more great content.


One tale of Twitter to the rescue of a financial planning firm after a Google search for updating an Excel trade log came up empty.


Which brings us inevitably to compliance issues.

Bill Winterberg points out that websites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and blogs “present compliance issues for registered representatives subject to FINRA regulations. All reps must obtain approval from the broker/dealer compliance department before posting anything on the Internet, as postings are considered advertisements.”

FINRA has published guidelines for use of the Internet by registered representatives of broker/dealers.

Winterberg, a Portland, Oregon based Certified Financial Planner, also notes that the SEC has similar guidelines that govern advertisements, including postings to public Internet forums.


Easier delivery and blog assessment

27 Jan

Imagine deploying 330,000 young people to communicate your message.

You could produce and circulate 330,000 print products – daily – and then sit back and wait and wonder about the effect. Or you could potentially facilitate and nurture 330,000 conversations. Ongoing conversations. Conversations that had a second life unlike a tossed print product. Conversation that could by monitored, adjusted, sourced and improved on the fly.

When David Meerman Scott highlighted Capt. Faggard and his Air Force Emerging Technology team recently, I was staggered by the volume of this communications idea.

Faggard’s Air Force Blog Assessment chart used by Air Force personnel is a template for a constantly improved daily briefing on all things Air Force.

In news organizations, there are rarely enough opportunities allowed to actively assess responses to each piece of content generated in print and web. There is plenty said about some particular stories, but this conversation happens well outside the organization’s walls on other local blogs and industry sites.

Blog assessment would be a fantastic tool for a news organization to use even with scant resources. What a great way to keep that churn of information inbound as well allowing reporters and editors insight to follow-up.

As valuable as blog assessment might be, the circulation figure still reigns supreme for many print companies.