Ping.fm

August 2, 2010

Are you spending too much time on updating all your Social Media? Are you also finding it really ridiculous to update your Facebook, Twitter, Plaxo, MySpace and LinkedIn status one at a time?

There must be a shortcut, right? Ping.fm is the Genius Shortcut you are looking for! Ping.fm is active in the social network aggregation space and lets you update your status on several sites at once.

I sometimes get remarks from friends that I am so active on Facebook while it has been nearly 2 weeks since I went there…but because my status is updated regularly, most people think I am present and following up in (nearly) realtime. So, now you know that I am using tools on top of those platforms to stay up-to-date and of course I an saving heaps of time!

So, how does Ping.fm actually work? Easy, let me explain in 3 steps:

1. Go to Ping.fm and sing up for an account.

2. Login and add the various Social Media or platforms you want your status to be updated. This is also called “syndication” of your status. You can actually choose from more than 30 sites, including WordPress, Blogger, Typepad, Yammer, Posterous, Flickr and Delicious!

3. Start broadcasting your updates!

Of course, I need to give you a disadvantage as well : Ping.fm was created with the idea that people want to get their updates out. It is not a tool to follow up on the conversation that happens afterwards. There are other tools perfectly suitable for that (one of the next blogs 🙂 )!

I am aware that several tools are providing similar services as Ping.fm. Hellotxt.com and AOL Lifestream to name a few.

So, what are you waiting for to update all your Social Networks at once?


Tell Your Story

May 3, 2010

Another quick tip about LinkedIn is to Tell Your Story through your job history on LinkedIn. Of course, the great people at LinkedIn created another short video about this:

I add a couple extra tips:

  1. When you write your summary, structure it in 3 parts: about you as professional, about the organisation that you work for and a personal note. Remember: People do business with other people, so you might as well add something personal too!
  2. Only use difficult words in the Specialties, not in the Summary! “I am an MBA, CISSP, CISA, ITIL expert with a specialization in cloud computing.” Say what? Exactly! How many people will read on?
  3. Write abbreviations and the full names of your technical terms in the Specialties, e.g. WDMP, Wealth Dynamics Master Practitioner

Start Sharing on LinkedIn

April 21, 2010

Most people already know that I am a Certified LinkedIn Trainer and with Networking Coach we are really helping a lot of people with getting more results by using LinkedIn.

So, I thought, it might be a good idea to start sharing some interesting tips on LinkedIn. Now, why would I do it all by myself if LinkedIn has their own clip on YouTube clip to show it to you 🙂

Happy Sharing!


Social Media Update

March 26, 2010

A couple of times a month I am giving sessions on Social Media in general or specialized sessions on LinkedIn, Twitter… Most people are asking me for additional figures, presentations, YouTube clips, etc. So, I decided to step-up and share with you some interesting materials on Social Media.

Of course, the list of great stuff on Social Media is endless, so I am sharing four with you:

1. Did You Know 4.0 (check out version 3.0 too!)

2. Social networks around the world 2010 (Research by InSites Consulting)

3. Social Media in Plain English (Commomcraft.com, who else :-))

4. What the F**K is Social Media? One Year Later (check out the original too!)


And the Winner is…

March 22, 2010

Did you ever had that moment where you are sitting in a room full of people and some contest was going on? Then suddenly the crowd’s attention goes up and the speaker on stage says: “And the Winner is…” a couple of seconds filled with extra silence…and then your name pops up! What? Was that my name? Sure? People start to look your way and spots find a way to you. You get up and slowly move towards the stage. Almost there, you realize this is actually happening! And you start to smile 🙂

This is exactly what happened to me a couple of days ago! Where was I and what was going on? Let me start from the beginning. As you know, I am a public speaker and share my message regularly on stage. Several friends asked me if I would join the Professional Speakers Assiociation (PSA). I am already a member of so many organisations that I intended to decline. People from all over the world suggested me to do that, some insisting more than others 🙂 So, finally, last tuesday, I decided to join PSA Holland, the Dutch chapter (no Belgian yet!) of the Global Speakers Federation (GSF). One of the goals that I made that day was to be on stage for them on their next convention (honestly I was thinking of 2011!). And I enrolled for the PSA Holland 2010 Convention immediately afterwards. This convention took place last weekend.

So, upon arriving, I registered and started to network a bit. Jan Vermeiren was also present and he introduced me to some of the people he knew. One of them was Christine Morlet, negociation expert and organizer of the “Elevator Pitch”-challenge. She asked if I where interested in joining a game and of course I said yes, actually not sure what I said yes too 🙂 Anyway, she explaines that at this PSA convention they are holding an “Elevator Pitch”-contest. The only thing I need to do, is present myself on stage in less than 120 words and less than 2 minutes. Most participants enrolled for it before the event and some backed off and so she was a couple of contestants short. So, I volunteered. Was that smart? I’ll answer that later on…

I presented my “Elevator Pitch” and was already satisfied that I got the visibility, let alone the feedback from the jury. It was well organized and they had a life voting-system (Sendsteps for more info). Because I was sitting behind the camera-man, I wasn’t really paying much attention to the scoreboard. But you know what happened next, right? Exactly! Before I knew it, I was on my way to the stage and jumped right on it! With a big smile, because I had won! And the Winner is Bert Verdonck with 52% of the votes (Can you believe it?)! Yes, the first price is a relax weekend in the Provence (France), thanks for asking 🙂

What just happened here?

Let me share you my personal “Elevator Pitch” according to the above rules and share some of the feedback that I got, from the jury and other participants.

“Most professional speakers are always looking for an audience, right? How fast can you be on stage before your target audience? We all want a shortcut! As the newest PSA Holland member, I did it in less than 3 days to be here in front of you! That is exactly what I do. Shortcuts! With Genius Shortcuts I teach you practical tools and tips to save you 2 hours/day or hack away other frustrations. I am a lifehacker and I help people through keynote speaking, trainings and workshops. So, think about how you would feel if one of your biggest frustrations disappeared forever? Come and see me afterwards and I will share free Genius Shortcuts so you can feel happier!”

Some of the feedback that I received:

  • Relaxed, great & pleasant voice, to the point, looked at the audience and the jury, great timing, radiant, great connection with the audience, fully present on stage, you walk your talk: you speak easy & simple, very good pitch, clear message from the start, well developed pitch, great impact, engaging, surprising opener, good pause and excellent posture.
  • Points to improve: wear your jacket (I forgot to put it on before walking on stage!), take more time (I only used 1 min instead of 2, so more room for extra details), not always clear what it really is about (lifehacking?), start smiling before you get on stage, explain better, give more examples, can be more confident, a bit too vague and explain more who your target audience is.

I am really thankful for all the feedback that I got and I am looking forward to sharpen this elevator story even more.

Why do I tell you all this? So you know how important it is to know your own Elevator Pitch. And to look for your Genius Shortcuts to find an audience or clients faster. Of course, it is also proof that you don’t have to be a longtime member to get the necessary visibility. Finally, it is important to receive feedback from other professionals, so that you improve. If no one ever tells you what you could do to improve, you don’t move forward, let alone become better at what you do…


LinkedIn Live!

March 16, 2010

LinkedIn is launching a new service in the Netherlands : LinkedIn Live! As this is in pilot phase now (official launch soon!), it still has to be discovered by the press and the rest of the world 🙂

The reason for me to blog about this is that I am one of the 4 certified LinkedIn trainers worldwide! No, I am not a LinkedIn employee, but as a member of Jan Vermeiren‘s team (Networking Coach) I had the privilege of being at the right place at the right time. As you know, I am giving lectures and trainings on Social Media regularly and of course LinkedIn is always included.

So, do you want to better use LinkedIn? Do you want to meet other LinkedIn users? Enroll for one of our inspiring sessions (in Dutch) now!

These 4 types of events are organized through LinkedIn-Training.nl (the official site):
Link & Learn: get an introduction about the practicalities of LinkedIn and meet other LinkedIn users “live” through facilitated networking.
Boost Your Business: discover how LinkedIn can help you attract additional customers, suppliers, employees & partners and experience the real power of networking through a networking auction and dinner.
Catapult Your Career: understand how LinkedIn can help you find your dreamjob and give and receive help during the networking drink.
Dive In Deep: follow a hands-on computer training in a small group with personal guidance allowing LinkedIn to unleash all its secrets to you.


Twitter Time

April 24, 2009

Twitter is truly going global these days. If we look at the rate they are growing. Amazing! What’s happening?Twitter

Many startups, like StockTwits, are basing their entire company on Twitter’s infrastructure. StockTwits is an open, community-powered investment idea and information service. Just eavesdrop on what other traders and investors are talking about in real time.

Recently Twitter grew at an incredible rate. As the graph of comScore shows, Twitter increased 95 percent in the month of March from 9.8 million to 19.1 million.

Twitter Growth March 2009 (TechCruch)

You also probably heard of Ashton Kutcher’s stunt on getting 1 million followers on Twitter? If you want to follow him too, he’s now at 1.3 million followers 🙂 By the way, mrs Kutcher (Demi Moore) is attracting people herself with 750K followers! Also a must read is Simon Dumenco’s article. He’s putting things in the right perspective.

What probably made the biggest difference is the appearance of Oprah (@Oprah) on Twitter (16th April). Read Heather Hopkins’ article on the Oprah Effect on Hitwise. Or is it coincidence that Twitter made it in the Top 40 most visited websites by Australians, according to Alan Long.

And then there is the Cisco Fatty or how to ruin a “Fatty Cisco Job” with 1 tweet. You must of heard of it by now, right?

Anyway, let’s share a great comic byNitrozac & Snaggy (Joyof Tech)

Twitter Etiquette

Oh, if you were still wondering where to find me, I am also on Twitter : http://twitter.com/bertverdonck

I know, I don’t have Ashton’s number of followers (yet), but fun in progress 🙂

Enjoy your weekend,

Bert Verdonck
Lifehacker & Life Coach