A few weeks ago I got a Facebook message from Caryn Brown from Frost & Sullivan, saying that she wanted to feature my blog as a “Recommended Read” in the eBulletin, a quarterly electronic publication for past participants in Sales and Marketing: A Frost & Sullivan Executive MindXchange. (I guess they ordinarily feature a book in this section.) I asked Caryn to let me know when the eBulletin would be distributed, so I could welcome you properly and share links to some of the posts I’ve done about Frost & Sullivan events. She kindly obliged, so here’s a quick intro to Social Media University, Global — or SMUG.
SMUG is the University of Phoenix without the football stadium…or the tuition…or the accreditation. It’s a place for lifelong learners to get hands-on experience with social media tools, which are changing the way people communicate.
With well over 100 million blogs and upwards of 68 million active users of Facebook, I’ve said previously that for PR professionals, unfamiliarity with these tools borders on malpractice. The same is true for those involved in sales and marketing.
Especially when you can learn about them for free!
Remember way back, maybe in the early 1980s, when your business bought a fax machine so you could magically send and receive pictures of documents over the telephone wires? It was worth spending $500 or more to join a network that would enable customers to send a purchase order for same-day processing.
So what’s holding you back from using Facebook in your business? Or MySpace? Or LinkedIn? Or blogging? Or Podcasts? Or Twitter? Or YouTube? It’s not the cost: you can do every one of those things for free! (Correction: a podcast might cost you $20/year – a nickel a day – or so.)
Some barriers to adoption of social media in business may include:
- Fear of the unknown
- Unfamiliarity with the potential benefits
- Inability to see practical uses
- Lack of IT support
- Failure to even consider engaging; it’s not even on your radar screen.
- Misunderstanding of the demographics involved in social media
We’ll even give you double your tuition back if you’re not completely satisfied!*
Caryn and the Frost & Sullivan gang don’t offer the same double-your-money-back guarantee for their Executive MindXChange (they would have a lot more at risk than I do), but having attended and live-blogged two of their events, I can tell you I didn’t meet anyone who left disappointed. Here are a few posts from January’s Executive MindXChange (links open in a new window): The blogging panel, advanced e-mail marketing strategies, the user-generated content un-panel, Martyn Etherington’s fascinating keynote, the 1to1 Impact Awards, using social media to drive demand, and a session on online marketing.
If you’d like to audit classes or enroll in Social Media University, Global, click here. You might want to start with our Core Courses, for an overview. The Message from the Chancellor also has some helpful background on our philosophy. Here’s our curriculum overview. And if you’d like to combine intensive hands-on learning with face-to-face interaction, maybe our Extension Classes are right for your group.
Thanks again to Caryn and the team from Sales and Marketing: A Frost & Sullivan Executive MindXchange for their great program and for their reading recommendation.
*Double-your-tuition back offer applies only to online courses.