How to…

How to buy better: buy only things you need.

How to optimize your phone calls: don’t respond incoming calls outside your “time for calls” unless you know they’re critical.

How to find meaning: having a mission and following this path through.

How to sell better: give your customer the double – at least – of value for what it pays to you.

How to take risks: decide faster than ever. Don’t think too much about what’s going to happen if you fall. Just fall.

How to get it right: getting it wrong first.

How to sell your personal brand: selling results, facts, and proof.

How to collaborate: looking only for the “win-win” equation.

How to communicate more effectively: staying more human.

How to do a greater marketing: creating a greater product or designing a greater service.

How to live the good life: being present, falling in love with the moment.

How to be more aware: getting in the habit of noticing unnoticed things.

How to get the best of and adventure or journey: dancing with the unknown, alone.

How to achieve anything: standing out from your inner self.

The point isn’t in “how to”, but why and when.


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15 Tips and Howto’s to Empower your Social Media Career

practical advice on social media

I’ve been asked several times for some students, that I should put together practical advice on going through the social media pathways and how to avoid the pitfall. Well the pitfall – meaning failure – is part of the game – However,  I can definitely take some concepts that best have been worked for me through these almost 4 years of adventures and experience in Social Media and list them.

15 Tips and Howto’s to Empower your Social Media Career

1. Hang out!

Meet people outside the Social Web. You’ll engage with them by meeting them personally in real-life. This is goal of Social Media. isn’t it?

2. Be an  entrepreneur

Start things, try, fail, make things happen, make business, set up social media initiatives, create needs, anticipate trends, trust in your gut…

3. Screw it, let’s do it!

Life spent wishing is life wasted

4. Manage your Social Media Time (idea by ChrisBrogan)

In order to engage, connect and interact with the community, you need to set up a social media policy, which allows you to manage your social media time, not for the sake of your time, but for creating the perfect relationship between the community and you.

  • Reading/listening: Spend 2/4 of your time reading and listening blogs, posts, updates, comments and so on…you’ll have a full understanding of what’s going on in your community, not to mention learning, thus gain insights and expand your knowledge, which is always great!
  • 1/4 Commenting: How do we expect people connect with us if we don’t reciprocate? We just expect comment from other people, but what about themselves? If we do so we’ll build a trust-based relationship with our audience and suddenly, we’ll realize that we’ve influencers and “high value partners”
  • 1/4 Creating: And the last one, create content, your content is important and is also essential to get you known – I’m not talking about quality and relevancy, we assume that – but at the end is auto-promotion, so my advice is promote your content 1 time for 20 times you promote others’ content.

5. WOM is your best friend

Nowadays, the WOM is the best marketing ever. The good news? In Social Media he’s our best friend, let’s see how we can make an effective use of him…

6. Social Media World

Offer social media platforms to collect feedback and at the same time-sharing and interacting.

7. Learn to say thank you

Say it! Do it publicly and please, customize your message, avoid mass untargeted messages.

8. Connect!

Connect your audience, create your tribe, start with a small group of people first. It’s a hard and slow process, it requires consistency, transparency charisma and imagination. But, let me tell you, that when you start seeing the results, it’s worth to make this effort.

As SethGodin says, you don’t need a keyboard to lead, you just need the desire to make something happen.

9. Network

Hell, yes! We’ve not talked about it yet!  Build a network, join social media associations or communities as Social Media Today, Social Media Marketing, word of mouth marketing association, third tribe marketing, mashable, techcrunch, adictos al social media, social mediopolis, life hacker or inbound marketing to name a few.

In all this groups, there’s a great amount of information exchange about social media and other related subjects. These are fantastic places to get in touch with what’s hot in social media, upcoming trends, but also to connect and engage with other professionals, enthusiasts and even businesses. Here, in Social Media, the opportunity has no name!

10. Breakeven point

Find you breakeven point – between professional and personal life. Establish beforehand which platforms are going to be for professional use and which ones for a more personal and private use – if you think you may have – In my case, I use Facebook for chilling, bragging, whining and so on with my people, I like to know what are they up to. I’m afraid, but unless I know someone who had me as a friend, I’m not going to friend her/him. However, they can always find you on LinkedIn, Twitter, foursquare, blogs…Does it make sense?

11. Multi-task

Be ready for being a multitask, owning your own Social Media brand, working as a freelance for big agencies, setting up synergies for collaborating in bigger projects, working for big brand, travelling, giving business talks, teaching Social media classes, posting regularly, commenting every single interaction, helping out others, having friends, family and even girlfriend/boyfriend…It’s OK to have 30 or 40 windows opened, it’s OK to have 100 passwords, is ok following and managing 10 communities, is Ok Posting each day in 5 or 8 blogs…at the end you are a Social Media Rockstar, right?

12. Always IN

Forget vacations, I said that because with Social Media you always should be on the top of the wave, doesn’t matter if it’s with a laptop or with a smart phone, always IN

13. Plan for failure

As we said before we’re on the gates to a new world, so there’s a lot to discover, learn and win. Nevertheless, as we don’t know what’s going to happen, you’d better have a plan B, C D and even E. Have always a contingency plan.

14. Your Spark

Everybody has a spark, if we take it from the foundation that we’re all different, and we won’t find another person identical to us. Then, as everybody has something that makes her/him unique – call it the Spark – You’ve one, Did you find it? Yes? How would you apply it? Is your Spark the ability to connect with people? To be open-minded? Catalyst for change? Heretic? Leader? Think about how you can use your Spark to boost your Social Media rock star Career…

15. Attitude

Did it mention before? A strong willing attitude for being remarkable, following your dreams or make a difference are sings that you are a social media rock star and if not, no worries, you can learn them, nobody is born being social media rock star.

What’s your opinion? What other tips would you add to the list? What’s left?

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LinkedIn, professionally speaking your best choice!

how to use linkedin - isra garcia

Social media descended from heaven and bless us with one of his most prized possessions, LinkedIn… professionally speaking your best choice!

What LinkedIn is?

LinkedIn simply is a social networking site for business that allows its users to keep up a permanent contact with a list of people they know or can trust when doing business. You can invite to join your network any user, it doesn’t matter whether they’re or not in LinkedIn to join.

Another interesting feature is that you can find people with who have studied or worked and get in touch again through LinkedIn.

Here you have some interesting points that make LinkedIn more appealing:

  • The average LinkedIn profiles working at Google is 47%.
  • The average number of Harvard Business School graduates is 58%.
  • People with more than 20 contacts have 34 times more chance of being contacted for a job that a person who has less than 5 contacts.
  • All companies in the Fortune 500 are represented in LinkedIn. In fact 499 of them are represented by director-level upwards.

Beyond a purpose

Most people use LinkedIn to either get someone to do business, attract potential customers or find a job. It works well because it is an online network of more than 9 million experienced professionals from around the world representing 130 industries. However it is still greatly under used tool. It’s believed that is LinkedIn is working at 70% of its capability…
If you are on LinkedIn or want to belong to the networking world’s largest, are some ways you could use:

Increase your visibility. Adding contacts, you can increase the likelihood that people will see your profile when looking for someone for a job or business.

Improve the possibility of being contacted. The majority of users put only their current company in their profile. By doing so, we’re severely constrained to connect with people. I recommend putting all the relevant information related to your career, from companies  you’ve worked in the past to educational institutions you’ve attended even uploading your own presentations or sharing your reading list...Also affiliations and activities.  You could also embed a link with your LinkedIn profile as part of the signature in your email.

Improving your Google Page Rank. Your information is found on a website and allows your LinkedIn profile is available on search engines like Google, Yahoo and MSN, which is a good way to influence what people see when they search and you came as part of that. To carry out this task, create a public profile and select “Full View”. Also, instead of using the URL you are given by definition, use your real name as part of the URL of your public profile. To strengthen the visibility of your profile in the page search engine results, interconnect your LinkedIn profile to social media (Twitter, Facebook, Ping.Fm, your blog, website,etc.) and put a link to your profile on several Internet sites. For example, when you make comments in blogs, forums, reviews of products or services.

Improve the results of your websites in search engines. Besides your name, you can promote your blog or website using the spaces for your favourite links in your profile.

Look for advice. AnswersLinkedIn A new product that lets you ask questions related to business or of opinion to find a guide to what you know or venture.

LinkedIn groups can be a powerful way to connect with other business people in a meaningful way. People are just discovering the potential, and there aren’t a lot of guides to group management on , so I’m working on some tips that would be useful for beginning community managers as well as experienced ones just learning the ins and outs of LinkedIn groups. Remember, creating the group is only the first step. It won’t thrive if you don’t nurture it.

Going deeper

Do not forget that LinkedIn is designed to manage contacts between non-corporate purposes.  Surprisingly there are still people who think “quantity before quality.” If management means more or less regular contact via text messages, share info, face-to-face, etc … I’ve just done with 20 or 30. And when you have visibility, or take part in discussions and threads can not help to receive more invitations. What are you doing? Delete contacts when you reach the top of your ability? Some users have it clear, the more contacts, the better.
I prefer to keep a balance … when I talk to my clients I tell them that “depend on your goals.” If you want to manage with “love” a limited network is the solution. If you take the networks and what seems being a great channel of communication, the more people know you exist, the better. So in that scenario touches you connect with people who have many connections. Unfortunately, many people in the networks are passing through. They come, they are active a while, reaches its target and leave. They’re not to share …

I’ve realized that networks are now overlapping. Facebook is no longer just a network to share photos and meet up with friends as there are many professionals promoting their services. And LinkedIn is no longer only to manage your professional contacts, is to achieve your corporate goals. And both work.
That’s Social Media, I think. The key is simply to add value. The rest is almost entirely permissible. As in any platform it is essential to know what the goal / strategy to carry out on that network/ what going to say about all social media. In my view, if one has no clear vision of the goal all the effort / time / money invested will be in vain

My personal experience

From my point of view, LinkedIn could be considered an effective weapon depending you aim, either find a job, expand your networking, make yourself known as a professional in other markets or consecrate as an expert in your career field or finding new opportunities…I started using linked in to build a trustworthy and firmly network in the States, because  I was planning to enrol in a  scholarship exchange program extension for my master degree in UCA (USA) next January. Consequently, I needed start making contacts to first work  part-time during the program and after full-time when it finishes. The fact is, I began with this strategy on February 2009 and by now I’ve arranged 6 interviews when I get there and a I’ve met admirable and outstanding professionals, but above all they’re magnificent persons, some of which have offered their kind help and guidance and have done all their best to guarantee my satisfaction.

Certainly, LinkedIn is – professionally speaking – your best choice! Are you in?

And you? What do you enjoy the most about Linked In? Which is you best choice?

Let’s connect on LinkedIn!

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My Twitter strategy, how to become an efficient twitter professional

Getting started


I started twitter as a consequence of starting to focus on social media, I read a post in the Guy Kawasaki’s blog talking about twitter and it immediately grabbed my attention, suddenly I found myself surfing The Internet in the search of more information about twitter and its world…Then I signed up, had an account and began to follow people,  as days went through I began to understand it better and better…

Working on twitter all this time has led me to think in it as a marketing tool and I like to use it when is possible. As I’m among friends I feel more confident to discuss what I really think twitter is and how you become an efficient twitter professional:

Twitter, the popular micro-blogging site, publishes messages with a most of 140 characters, whatever you want to say you must say it in this amount of characters, It is hard sometimes, but it’s one of the reasons I love twitter, no matter the message, statement, advice, offer or opinion, you must struggle to do it with just a handful of words, which really compel us being more creative and imaginative than ever. Consequently, most of the time we’ll have a very effective communication with prospect, providers or whoever is following us. Currently, twitter has an estimated 4.1 million visits to the site and is growing very each day faster than other social networking in the U.S. alone. It’s one of the most viral social media tools freely available in the market. Many brands and professionals attempt to use the tool to sell their services and products, but the successful brands and professionals use twitter to listen and engage with their stakeholders, as an earlier conclusion we can talk about twitter as an approach to create conversation between prospects and businesses or we can use it as an engagement tool, too.

Getting deeper…

Interact with other twitter seems easy, but if you don’t know how it works don’t. Each message you post is known as a “Tweet.” In social media and social networking industry, Twitter facilitates a process known as micro-blogging or micro-sharing. Every user identifies himself/herself by putting a “@” sign in front of their name (for instance: @Israel_Garcia, here is mine). It’s the common way of communicating on twitter. Joining Twitter has value for many people and businesses, but as I said before it can also be a waste of time if you don’t understand how the medium works and how best to use it. Instead of approaching Twitter as a place to broadcast information about your company, think of it as a place to build relationships. It’s also a good idea to include additional contact info, like email addresses or your blogs.

Listen regularly for comments about your company, brand and products and be ready to discuss concerns, offer customer service or thank people for praise.

In addition to keeping an eye on your @messages, you can use the Saved Searches feature to easily track mentions of your product, brand, company, etc. From your Twitter home page, simply run a search, and then at the top of your result’s page, click “Save this search.” A link with your search term will appear on the right side of your page, and when you click it, you’ll get real-time results for that query. To drop a search, just head to the top of your results and click “Remove this search.”

My twitter strategy

Let’s talk openly about how you could be an efficient Twitter professional…

1. Set a target or purpose for your twitter.

It could be:

Promote your blog

Gain more affluence and traffic in your social networking

Establish a networking between your customers and your business

Increase your website traffic

Increase brand recognition

Built a reputation as an expert in the field you work on

But (and this is a great but…) I strongly suggest you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • What approach should I take to be more appealing to the rest of users? What makes me different from rest of users?
  • What kind of content I’m delivering? links, advice, opinion, quotations, RT,feedback…
  • How often I’m going to tweet Once a day, twice, every 5 minutes, when something interesting comes up…
  • Are my twits aligned with my twitter strategy (step 1)? Develop, establish and follow a clear but simple strategy
  • Did I choose appropriately the best twitter strategy (step 1)? Occasionally check your strategy and implement corrective measures to re-align your strategy in case of changes.
  • Is twitter really meeting my needs? Am I in twitter for a purpose or just because it is trendy? If you are here, certainly you have a purpose. On the contrary, you’d better go shopping in Milan, undoubtedly more trendy…

2. Twitter could be stressing and addictive.

At the beginning is easy to manage twitter, nevertheless as the number of your followers and follows grow, you’ll realise that you cannot deal with such amount of tweets, tweeps, connections, information, links, advices, opinions and so on. Take a breath and be aware of… It is the first step for being successful (at the same time you’ll be honest with yourself). Also, make sure you don’t fall in what I like to call the “dark side of twitter” which is the one used by hundred of thousands of people who are also in, but don’t use it for business. LET’S BE CLEAR, YOU ARE READING THIS BECAUSE YOUR TIME IS PRICELESS AND YOU WANT TO BECOME A TWITTER PROFESSIONAL, I don’t care if my neighbour is getting up a 10 am. for preparing herself/himself a bowl of cereals with orange juice before going shopping…

3. Follow the people who best meet your needs.

For example, If you are a musician and you want promote your website, MySpace or blog, you should look for people interested in Music, producers, record labels, music agencies, clubs or even musicians for instance. As you give them value you’ll have a tribe ready to follow you. The question is…are you ready to lead? It’s the same principle as growing a blog – if you help enhance people’s lives in some way they are more likely to want to track with you and read more of what you have to say. As a result your conversations should ‘matter’ on some level. Sure you can throw in personal tweets and have some fun with it – but unless you’re providing something useful to people (information, discounts, entertainment, news, education etc) they probably won’t follow you for long.

Also be wary of always trying to sell your product or service. Your followers don’t like to follow people, who are always trying to sell them something. Try adding links that make people laugh or something really curious or odd, but use good taste. This way they can’t wait for your next tweet.

4. Be Strict and censor with your ‘anti-prospect’.

There are millions of people using twitter for different purposes, some of them are here for professionals matters, others don’t…If you aren’t interested in someone who isn’t decided between cooking boiled eggs or smashed potatoes… avoid them!

5. Take advantage of the twitter apps to manage twitter efficiently.

I highly recommend use apps to manage your time in twitter efficiently, here you can find which I use the most:

With tweetbeep, you can set up alerts that will help you keep track of keywords on Twitter

Twitscoop shares what’s hot on Twitter at any given moment.

Set up tweetscan to make sure you don’t miss any @replies, and to get alerted of your search queries.

Twitterlocal With this service, you can see tweets from Twitter users in a specific location

Use tweepler to organize your tweeps based on whether you’re following them or not.

Twubble will expand your Twitter bubble, picking out people you may like to follow.

Twitdir, you’ll be able to search for people, and exploring categories including top followers and updaters.

Who should I follow Using this site, you can get good recommendations for Tweeps to follow.

Twellow find Twitter users in a specific industry using this service

Mr. Tweet is a personal networking assistant for Twitter, helping you find relevant followers

Moreover, you can go to this site, which offers more than 100 twitters apps 100 Twitter tools to help you achieve all your goals

I want to give you a piece of advice, some of the apps could be very helpful, but some of them are useless and a completely waste of time. It depends on your twitter strategy, I recommend study them before the installation is being made.

6. Don’t stress if your number of followers doesn’t rise.

It takes sometime people get interested in what you’re doing or saying. Take twitter as a refined flower you recently bought and it needs to be treated with meticulous care to develop all its beauty within its cocoon. If times goes through and your number of followers doesn’t grow you don’t need being afraid anyway, why? Because twitter is not about the follower count, it’s about conversions. A carefully cultivated list of 1000 followers can beat a list of 10,000 twitter followers anytime when it comes to spreading content or getting traffic/sales. A social mediafollowersstrategy that only involves mass following all sorts of people and shooting out links to hook buyers or readers is quite inadequate. Forget about the people who follow you without a reason these are auto-follows or just  low-value followers. Not because they are dumb or socially inferior but because a good amount of these followers are not ultra-targeted, active or responsive. Many of them are self-promoters, spammers or automated feed accounts. These people aren’t interested in you. They don’t care about you. They didn’t REALLY opt-in. They even followed you automatically, didn’t they? So play the Twitter game of mass adding and dropping users for a few months. You may even meet some cool people but don’t assume that you have 50,000 users who actually read your tweets or pay attention in you. They aren’t. And you’re irrelevant to them. I have to recognize that is hard to find productive twitters, people interested in you, in what you do, in what you say, in what they get from you (ie RT links) they follow you because they have reasons to. You’ll know when you find them, they’re very active and in most of  the cases will share common things with you.

7. Key points

At a glance I would recommend:

  • Ensure you want to set up and support relationships
  • Be authentic
  • Be consistent, reliable and friendly – don’t take anything personally
  • Listen before you speak
  • And while numbers are seductive, remember the opportunity is in establishing quality relationships and providing quality tweets for your followers, whatever your message
  • Forget direct messages, they’re impersonal, unconvincing and it seems that don’t like to twitters.
  • Carefully choose the people you follow. Do NOT automatically follow everyone who follows you.
  • Selectively choose and search for TOPICS that interest you, then join in those conversations.
  • Support worthy and compelling conversation by selectively RETWEETING those messages that you think are interesting/informative to your followers.

Your take

You? Whats is your strategy?

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