30Thursday 15: On Memorial Day, Summer, and your Customer

Thoughts on Memorial Day. Thoughts about how to let customers know that they really do come first. And thoughts about the promise of summer. Those are just some of the sentiments waving through the posts for this #30Thursday round-up. Enjoy!

1. If you can make it through this post by my friend Gaga with dry eyes, you’re a stronger person than I am. Please read and absorb In Loving Memory, and send peony thoughts to Ms. Gaga.

2. Nancy Davis has written a couple of great posts about her first experiences at BlogWorld, but I like this one the best because I think you can see, as they say, what makes her tick. Please check out Just Be You, and smile!

3. Lincoln, Leadership, and Lisa Petrilli. How can you lose? Lisa wrote a post quite appropriate for Memorial Day called Leadership, Vision, and a New Birth of Freedom. She references a book that I think I will have to get (Lincoln on Leadership) and tells the story of Lincoln writing and presenting the Gettysburg Address. Lots of historical and leadership goodness to enjoy!

4. There is almost too much I could say about this post by Mark Schaefer. In his unique, storytelling way, Mark makes the extremely powerful point that 140 characters makes it extremely easy to judge people, but not so easy to REALLY get to know people. Powerful post from a fellow whom I judge to be terrific. Please read Have you judged me today? and share your thoughts!

5. New blogger and fabulous person Peggy Fitzpatrick is a little worried about how we seem to be dumbing down the English language here in the US. Like, totally omg! Do you agree? Read OMG! The Dumbing Down of America, and give Peggy mad kudos for a fantastic start to her blogging career :)

6. Do you plan ahead for eventualities that might be coming at you down the road? Danny Brown suggests the importance of this in many facets of life, from your blog to your job to your personal life. Give it a read and share your thoughts!

7. Truly inspiring and motivational words from Lou Imbriano this week in his post called Don’t give the SOB’s the satisfaction. Lou prescribes to the idea (as do I) that when the pressure is put on you, that’s when you rev your engines and exceed expectations. It’s a tough road, but nothing can make you feel more fulfilled than succeeding even when others want you to fail.

8. Ever wonder what fonts are the best to use for online sites, blogs, and the like? My talented friend Mr. Chase Adams has just the guide you’ve been looking for. Check out (and bookmark) A Brief Guide to Web Safe Fonts. So useful!

9. Have you been wondering what that #usguys hashtag is all about? Paul Biedermann offers insight into how it started, what it was, and what it may turn into, all the while establishing #usguys against the backdrop of how Social Media itself is evolving. Check out Usguys: Meandering Stream or Dynamic Torrent, and check out the tribe on Twitter!

10. I really like this post by Paul Flanigan, which is called The One Digital Media Strategy Question to Ask. Not only does Paul argue that we must ask what the benefit for the customer or user would be, but he also differentiates between something like a button, which has a use, and a benefit, which is why the user would push that button. Do you have a reason for your customers to push your neat buttons? Better make sure!

11. Dan Perez is not one to mince words, so it’s no surprise that his post titled Authenticity, Transparency & Hypocrisy: An Observation offers some truths that might be difficult for some to swallow. Sometimes bitter is a good shock for the taste buds though. Give this great post a read, and share your thoughts!

12. Christopher Dorda offers an important reminder in his post called You Are Not Your Audience. Are you blurring the line between a personal blog and a corporate one? This is something Dorda highly advises you avoid (and I must say, I rather much agree with him!).

13. Should you just jump into blogging, or should you do some research and figure some things out first? Views on this point differ, but Misty Belardo, writing for Bit Rebels, suggests asking yourself 5 questions before you plunge into blogging. Do you have answers to her 5 questions?

14. Another person who doesn’t really mince words is Erika Napoletano of Redhead Writing. Her post called 19 thing I wish I knew when I started my business is brilliant, to the point, and awful darned passionate. Warning for those of you not familiar with Erika’s work – there are some NSFW words in there :) Plow through it anyway!

15. Are you thinking about moving your blogs to a different hosting company? You’ll want to read this post (several times) by Kristi Hines. Thorough, detailed, excellent information!

16. My friend Sherree Worrell would prefer that you not list her on Twitter, and she won’t list you either. Want to know why? Read her post!

17. Laura Click is one of those people who just seems to do everything, and she does it all well, including using it to her advantage when she blogs! In one of her latest posts, Laura advises that all business folk should run a half marathon, or at least do some physical activity regularly. Why? Well read her post and find out!

18. Want six steps to begin the process of actually measuring how your Social Media campaign is performing? Jay Baer has it all laid out for you! Hint: it has nothing to do with your mother.

19. Ever heard that a marketing strategy is created by “throwing spaghetti against the wall?” Well, Scott Bradley might take issue with that. Take a look at his 15 questions to ask as you create an effective marketing campaign. Fantastic resource here!

20. Have you ever planted a seed and then expected it to grow into a tree in 5 minutes? Probably not. However, if you are in the B2B world, you might send out a direct mail piece and expect it to grow into a new customer in 5 minutes. Dawn Westerberg reminds us that in B2B, you’ve gotta be ready for the long haul. An important reminder!

21. In time for Memorial Day, John Durfee wrote a post on Carol Roth’s side on the veteran’s perspective of the job search. If you are a veteran or if you know one, please give this great post a read.

22. Right along the lines of Nancy Davis’s post is Marlee Ward’s excellent post summarizing her BlogWorld experience. Like Nancy, Marlee’s real take-away was with the people, and she does a great job of explaining what people were *really* like live and in person. A delightful post, and great to hear that folks you hear good things about really are good! :)

23. I hate to give you more reading to do…well, no, actually I don’t. I am definitely not the only person who is curating content online. Ingrid Aboud of NittyGriddyBlog.com does a fabulous Sunday wrap-up. She was kind enough to include a post of mine in this monster mash, but I’m including it because hers puts my round-ups to shame :) Look at those pretty topic categories!!! :O Anyway, check out her round-up and give her props!

24. What if companies focused more on results and less on actions? Michael Brenner argues that one of the biggest mistakes companies make is focusing too much on process, not enough on the customers. Many business experts agree that customers are pretty darned important – so why don’t we focus on them? Great and insightful post, worth a read or 2 or 3!

25. How many A-Listers are not English speakers? This is a question Nic Wirtz poses at the site he and Ian Rountree are running called Hard Refresh. This issue has been bothering me as well. I have access to people all over the world, but can I speak to them? Not if they don’t speak English. Does that mean they don’t have anything worthwhile to say? *Hardly* Check this post out and voice your opinions!

26. Echoing Dawn Westerberg’s line of thinking, Amber Naslund suggests that you build your network before you actually need it. That means that you don’t just use people, get what you need in the short term, and then drop them, by the way. Read Amber’s post to learn more!

27. Have you seen some of the new-fangled washers and dryers out there in the world? They’re kind of crazy. My parents have one that sings a little song when it starts and when it’s done. Molly Campbell is similarly perplexed by these futuristic laundry mechanisms, as she writes about in her delightful post called Future Shock. Check it out!

28. The always interesting Mack Collier is wondering about Social Media these days. Can you really depend on and trust the people you’re following? If not, why follow them? And if you’re asking why you should follow people, are you going to start trimming your online community? Weigh in on this fascinating post, which Mack called, Are we headed toward a Social Media snapback? Great post!

29. You’ve heard of getting ready for the summer in terms of exercise plans. You’ve engaged in getting your garden ready for summer or getting your vacation plans ready for summer. But what about getting your blog ready for summer? Heidi Cohen has some great ideas on how to summerize your blog. Great concept!

30. Mary Biever wants to know if you’re 100% sure you want to badmouth your customers, your boss, or your job online. Because let’s face it, the chances of someone in those groups seeing what you have to say is pretty darned good! Check out Mary’s post, Don’t badmouth the hand that feeds you. A great reminder.

Image by Michal Zacharzewski. http://www.sxc.hu/profile/mzacha