Archive for the ‘personal’ Category

My 3 Words for 2015

January 1, 2015 Leave a comment

I use 3 words to define how I set my year, and have been doing so since 2012.

Here are the 3 words I chose for 2015:

My 3 Words for 2015

Categories: personal, self-help Tags:

Social Wish List: Dailymile and Strava Channels on IFTTT

February 17, 2014 4 comments
The day when you hit your goal mileage -- 1,200 -- and your top speed -- 41.2 mph -- during the same ride. #bikeschool #Trek #SeenOnMyRide #cycling

I would love to be able to take the Strava data recorded on my smartphone and send it straight to Dailymile. Please, IFTTT, help put the Web to work for me.

I am an avid recreational cyclist. I love to go for long rides in the penetratingly exasperating heat of July. And I love to push my body to its fastest on tough short local courses.

Regardless of the type of ride that I go on, I log my miles and information into Dailymile, a social network dedicated to fitness.

But the app that I use to record my rides on my smartphone is Strava, a cycling-focused app that is used by the top professionals in the world.

This is where I would bring in IFTTT, putting the power of the web for my personal use. IFTTT is one of my favorite tools, and it performs functions that make my life so much easier. It automates tasks and chores that make my daily web use run smoother and faster, and it frees up my time to do other tasks, like being social on social media.

And while IFTTT does a great job expanding and growing, I would love to request that the site make channels for Strava and Dailymile.

I would love to see users create recipes that transfers data between the two networks. I would love to be able to record a ride on Strava with its GPS feature and have the map of my ride transferred to Dailymile.

Automation is where IFTTT shines, and this is one more way in which my social efforts could use some automation tricks.

Reader feedback: What channels would you like to see IFTTT include?

Always Get Attribution for Your Photos on Pinterest in 5 Easy Steps

April 15, 2013 3 comments

Flickr Attribution on PinterestPinterest is great for blog traffic and referrals, but a lot of people bemoan the fact that getting attribution can be dicey.

And that’s where Flickr comes in. By using Flickr, which has a partnership with Pinterest to provide attribution details for pins, you can ensure you always get attribution.

Here’s how.

1. Join Flickr. You need an account, obviously.

2. Upload your photo or photos to Flickr. Make sure you add information in the description and tag fields. Include the photo in any sets you might have and target it to groups, too.

That won’t help for getting attribution on Pinterest, but it will help in getting your photos more eyeballs on the photo-sharing site.

3. Grab the HTML or BBCode from the photos you want to use. This is the code you need. When viewing an individual photo, click “Share” button, and then “Grab the HTML/BBCode.”

4. Embed the code in your blog post. Just paste the code wherever you want to to be in the blog post. Tweak the formatting as you see fit.

5. Publish your blog post. Yeah, you can’t get attribution unless your content is published. So now it’s just a matter of time until your content gets pinned, and your attribution shows up on Pinterest.

(As you can see in the example on this blog post, my Flickr name, polleydan, shows up on the Pinterest pin just below the text box.)

Categories: marketing, personal Tags: ,

My Social Media Wish List for 2013

January 14, 2013 Leave a comment

Instagram and Twitter: Please get along nicely! Creative Commons photo courtesy of HighTechDad.

If you use social media tools every day like I do, then you’re bound to find a hoop here or a hole there that you have to jump through.

Sometimes it would be easier if that wasn’t the case. Sometimes you find yourself wishing for something that would make your life easier.

These are the things I hope happen. This is my wish list for social media for this year.

Engaging content

Too often do brands or bloggers or whoever post content on social sites that is, frankly, not good. Too often do they do the gimmicky thing and post something that isn’t necessarily relevant to them just to garner likes or comments.

Let’s stop this.

Let’s start posting content that is better than that, content that is relevant to the brand and its customers, content that unique.

Networks playing nicely together

Be honest: You, too, got sick of the bickering among networks last year. Most recently, Instgram and Twitter having a tiff over not showing photos in tweets. But there are certainly more examples.

Social media users are tired of it. We just want to use the networks we want and for them to get along. (Yes, I know this is a pie-in-the-sky wish and that it will not happen. Still …)

Mulitple managers for Facebook interest lists

Here’s a more tangible wish. I love Facebook interest lists, and it’s how I navigate the network now.

But I would love to be able to share managing duties of a list with another Facebook user. Already I have encountered a handful of situations where I had a list but a friend made their own because they could not add to mine. Make it happen, Facebook.

What do you wish to see in social media this year?

My 3 Words for 2013

January 7, 2013 5 comments
Chris Brogan's 2010 Words

Three words driving Chris Brogan through the start of 2010. Creative Commons photo courtesy of topgold.

I have never been one to make New Year’s resolutions. But last year I did something different after learning about what Chris Brogan does.

I chose three words — Passion, Challenge, Connect — and used them as a way to frame my year. I am doing the same this year.


Follow “it,” whatever “it” is: Dreams, opportunities, success. Don’t let them slip away, never to come back. Keep on track, and do it consistently.

That is pursuit, and that is what I need.


Sometimes, in my personal life, I start a task or project and then I don’t finish it. I get disinterested and move onto the next task or project. I want that behavior to stop.

I want to pick up a task or project and see it to fruition. I want to revel in the feeling of a job done, and done well.

And I also want to demonstrate my commitment to being a better husband, a better friend, a better person.


This word has a couple of meanings, but the one that I’m most interested in is create content. I want to get back to blogging regularly here and at my food blog.

I also want to create works of fiction. In the past, fiction writing has been a very sporadic activity. Now I want it to be something I put more effort into, something that I set aside dedicated time for, even if it’s only every other week.

The same goes for other types of content I want to create: Paintings (acrylics and non), social (Storify) and more.

Bring it, 2013

If I can harness pursuit, commitment and create this year, I know it will be a very good year.

What are your three words for this year?

Categories: personal, self-help Tags: ,

5 Key Thoughts from the PR + Social Media Summit, #prsms

October 15, 2012 4 comments

Photo courtesy of Gee Ekachai via Instagram

Last week the 4th Annual PR + Social Media Summit was held, and if you weren’t there, well, you were probably following along from home (read: work) at the #prsms hashtag.

Right? Right.

Just in case you didn’t go and weren’t listening on Wednesday, here’s a rundown of 5 key thoughts to take away from the summit.

1. Not Everything is a Social Media Crisis

Augie Ray in his keynote burst some social media bubbles and at the forefront were crises. Not everything that appears as though it’s a crisis will turn out to be one.

As an example, NBC took a lot of heat for its Olympics coverage this summer. The tape delays were probably the most known one, but there were several other public outrages, too.

But NBC ended up garnering its highest ratings for the Olympics, and the network, which forecast itself to lose $200 million in the process, ended up breaking even.

2. Tell Your Story Visually

Gee Ekachai, whose Instagram photo is featured in this post, presented about that social network at the summit.

The main takeaway from her presentation? That visual storytelling is growing and so popular because it can cross language barriers.

(As an aside, I share a lot of pictures of my dogs on Instagram. I was happy to learn that the first photo on that network was of a dog.)

3. “Not Everyone Is Going to Be a Fan of Your Brand.”

I tweeted this quote, but forgot to give credit to its author. And now I can’t remember.

Regardless, it’s an important reminder. As much as anyone involved in social media is fixated on growing a brand, getting new likes and followers, it’s important to remember this.

Some people won’t be swayed and that’s OK. Instead, try to recognize those who love your brand, and give them content and interactions that will continually solidify that feeling.

4. Listening is of the Utmost Importance

“Brands who pay attention, get paid with attention,” said Molly McKenna Jandrain during her breakout session on “Sharing Your Brand Story.”

To me it seems like social listening is not talked about as much as other parts of social media like humanizing, tools to use or metrics to track.

But listening is half of social media — by definition, social media takes two partners, and you have to listen to the other partner to keep the interaction going. If you’re not listening — and even if you are — take time out to see how you can improve in this area.

5. Be an Industry Leader

No, those aren’t words that Nick Symmonds uttered about himself, but he might as well have done so. He’s an industry leader for Olympic athletes.

Nick seized an opportunity this year and sold a space for a tattoo on his shoulder through eBay. Summit sponsor Hanson Dodge Creative won the auction, and the two have a mutually beneficial relationship because of it.

The auction started because Olympic track athletes can show only one logo when running in races, and Nick wanted to bring attention to that and get it changed. He has brought a lot of attention to the issue, and he has found opportunity where none existed, by partnering with Hanson Dodge and growing his personal brand.

That’s what happens when you’re an industry leader.

Read more about the summit

You can read some of my curated recaps on Storify:

And if you still want to read more, I recommend this recap — 3 Takeaways from #PRSMS — from my Twitter friend Abi.

HOW TO: Use Facebook Interest Lists

August 27, 2012 14 comments
Facebook Interest List view

Here’s a view of my Social Media Tools interest list.

Facebook has been in the news a lot recently with rumors and new features being announced. But the service already offers a great feature that isn’t talked about much.

Time to check out Facebook’s interest lists.

What is an interest list?

Interest lists are a great way to group similar things into one stream on Facebook. You can include pages and people on your lists.

Why should you use them?

Interest lists are great for pages because you can get all of the updates from that page in your list feed. (Otherwise, because of EdgeRank, you won’t see all of a page’s updates.)

How do you use them?

I use them to follow pages that I have liked that I want to interact with more often.

One list I recommend creating: A list for your home town, with restaurants, businesses and annual events. That way, you can just click the link to that stream and see all the news of your home town.

How do you create one?

It’s a breeze to create one of these lists, and there’s two ways to do it.

  • On your news feed, click on “more” by “Interests” in your left-hand rail. On the next page, click on “Add interests.” You can then search for lists or create your own.
  • Or, on any page, you can hover over “Liked” (I’m assuming you have liked the page), and click “New list” from the drop-down menu.
  • If you have not liked the page, on the settings icon next to “Message,” select “New list” from that drop-down menu. (This is the same way you can add people to your list, too.)

Subscribe to my lists:

Do you have a favorite Facebook interest list to share? Please do so in the comments.

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