I got a feeling

I got a feeling…. no I am not talking about the Black Eyed Peas song but how I felt a few days ago at a recent workshop.It was a social media workshop for OCRI’s e2 plus. There were about 14 in the room. As with all workshops most of the people were at different levels and it’s always a challenge to find middle ground and not bore the advanced people and not loose the beginners.

There were a good mix of people with a fair number leaning towards advanced. I started the session off with something new, social media introductions. This idea came from the most common problem that my clients have when it comes to social media.  So I digress to tell you more.

Most clients want to participate in social media as they vaguely realize it’s value especially reaching the younger demographic. Often there is this perception that it’s something instantaneous and magical. The reality is that it could be all that however the key word is that it’s “social”. So if the only medium used is text then it’s very boring. To make it interesting and social photos and videos need to be incorporated into the mix.

Well easier said than done. In the past these photos and videos were taken by professionals and were for organizations with large budgets. However with the evolution of mobile and online technologies the door is now open for user generated photos and videos. Thus taking the message you need to communicate with your audience from a medium of text to photos and videos. The problem is that as individuals, who in turn make up organizations, are not used to doing this from a professional capacity. We have no problems taking photos/videos in our social life, however when it comes to business this is not generally in our thought process.

So my goal was to challenge the group from just sitting and saying who they were to actively generating photos/videos while introducing themselves.Hence the name social media introductions.

Well no sooner had I explained myself I got the P word…. privacy…..

I get this from ALL my clients, it’s this mythical or should I say false sense that our lives are private. That’s a whole other blog post. I did explain that it was part of the workshop and we would discuss it. Long story short we go on with the exercise.

I took both a video and digital camera and asked the participants to exchange these items while the person sitting next to them introduce themselves. I delliberatly did not give them too much instructions as I wanted them to go with the flow. At first people were very conscious of the cameras however as they made their way round the room people relaxed and began to have fun. The started to pay attention to what they were saying, what the lighting conditions were, camera angles etc….

In other words although they were not happy with what I suggested in the begining they participated and had fun. The feedback I got afterwards indicated this. I did ask if I could edit the video and put both the photos and videos online and I got no objections!!!

So back to what made it so awesome? For me it was the workshop participants, they asked questions regardless of what level they were at and also shared their social media experiments. Both beginner to advanced they participated actively not just one or two but a fair number of them.

So everyone participated and that’s what made it fun. So thanks to everyone who attended and thanks for participating and making the session interesting for everyone.