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Happy Birthday Internet! You Rock!

Birthday cupcakes

Can you believe it? The internet turned 25 this week! That’s right! TWENTY FIVE! To celebrate this milestone, I share with you my story of the first time I went online.


I actually remember the first time I went online, that I entered the world wide web. It was in 1995 or 1996 when I worked at the UC Santa Barbara Alumni Association. Go Gauchos! The Association had just been hooked up to the world wide web. And so at my computer, my co-workers and I huddled around my computer and using Netscape Navigator (remember that?) we went online.

We looked up very generic topics and were completely fascinated by what we saw. We were not exactly sure how everything worked, but all we could think was, “This is so cool.” We definitely appreciated that the internet was an amazing invention and one that could change the world. And boy has it!

As a communication person, I love the internet and all the fabulous technology that has been built atop its foundation. I am grateful for websites and social media, the ability to shop online, watch movies and TV and all the crazy apps that people dream up. All I see is opportunity. I see opportunity to be and stay connected globally and opportunity to improve communication. I have never understood all the negativity surrounding social media. All I see is the chance to connect and communicate with pretty much anyone, anywhere in the world. That, to me, is amazing.

I have no idea what the next 25 years of the internet has in store, but I am sure looking forward to the ride!

I would love to hear your story! Do you remember the first time you used the World Wide Web? Was it as much of an event as my office story? What are your predictions for the next 25 years? Will we see another Facebook emerge or do you have other ideas as to how the internet will develop? I can’t wait to hear from you!


BONUS: Read Yahoo’s 25 Ways The Web Has Changed The World


3 LinkedIn Updates to Encourage You to Update Your Profile


While there has been a lot of fuss about Facebook lately, LinkedIn is quietly updating and upgrading its platform and is becoming incredibly valuable to its Members.

In this week’s video, I share with you three LinkedIn updates that should encourage you to check in with your profile and make some updates.

Click here to watch the video:

These updates are super helpful for those of us who want to keep an updated profile and make sure we are appealing to and connecting with the right people. The updates I discuss are:

1. Who’s Viewed Your Profile

This is the most viewed section of LinkedIn, and now they are giving us more information about who is finding you and more importantly – how people are finding you. Use this data to tweak your profile headline, summary and experience to make sure you are discovered by the people you want to connect with.

The snapshot looks something like this (will vary based on your own profile results):


You can now learn more within categories:

Industries of your viewers

What your viewers do

Where your viewers came from (how they found you, i.e. in a Group or via Search)

Keywords that led to you

Where they work

Where they live

My results definitely encouraged me to adjust my summary section! Please remember that your headline, summary and experience section should be peppered with your keywords, as these sections play in the search function and help you get discovered.

2. LinkedIn Opens Publishing Platform

LinkedIn has now opened their publishing platform to its membership. This provides all of us greater opportunity for exposure and to offer greater value to our network. If our articles consistently receive many views, likes, comments and shares, they we have the chance to become a LinkedIn influencer.

This is being rolled out over the next few months, but if you’d like to send in an application for early release (I did) then you can fill out a short form, provide two examples of the type of content you’d be publishing, and cross your fingers.

Apply early: http://specialedition.linkedin.com/publishing/

3. Encouraging Professionalism in High School Students

In August, LinkedIn dropped it’s minimum age for Members to fourteen. This was done in an effort to encourage students to begin thinking about their future, the moment they enter high school. LinkedIn wants to provide an advantage to ambitious students, recommending they follow university pages to connect with admissions and alumni.

One high school student wrote for the LinkedIn blog,

“I’ve discovered that the sooner you put yourself in the professional community, the better your chances of finding the opportunity you want.” – Rutha Nuguse

Perhaps this attitude will spill over into behavior on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, too. That’s why I love this push from LinkedIn. It reinforces that you are never too young to build your professional profile, polish your personal brand and manage your reputation.

This news has really made me think twice as to how I use LinkedIn and inspires me to be more proactive with my account. I hope it encourages you to do the same!


A Facebook Success Story

This week I enjoyed client visits in Orange County. And on the heels of my visit with Center Club, I wanted to share a Facebook success story with you.

As you may remember from my newsletter a couple of weeks ago, Facebook changed it’s algorithms. That means that the chances of our Page posts landing in the news feed of the people who like your page has changed. And what’s worse is that those chances have decreased. Facebook wants you to share content from big sources like Time Magazine or ESPN. Facebook wants you to share photos. And Facebook wants you to pay to get your content into the newsfeed of the people who like your page.

I worked with the Center Club team to determine how we could work around this. And here’s what we tested:

Increase the number of posts per day

Before the algorithm change, the Club was posting about 2 times per day. We increased that to 5-7 times per day. It is nearly impossible that any one of the people who like the Center Club page will see every post. That would be a nice problem to have!

Focus on the content

What’s the incentive for people to like, comment or share? While it’s nice to post more often throughout the day, it’s absolutely essential to make sure it’s quality content. For Center Club, the goal is to continually share content which helps Members take advantage of and enjoy their membership. Every post is Member-centric. And that also means that every department has a voice, so you see content from Membership, Private Events, Food & Beverage, Member Relations and spontaneous moments that are fun to capture.

Behind the Scenes

Members love interacting with the staff, and so the BTS type posts often perform very well. We geared up to share more BTS-type posts.

Center Club BTS


Simple trivia and photo contests are popular among Members. And it gives incentive to share the post on their own profiles. Our test period fell during Valentine’s week, and so the “Cutest Couple” contest was a big hit and certainly played a role in increased engagement. Center Club will post a simple contest each week.

Our team schedules their posts directly in Facebook (FB likes this more than third party apps like Hootsuite) and after two weeks of consistent posting, the results were in. We were delighted to see green arrows pointing up in all categories on our Facebook Insights

Page Likes increased 5.6%

New Page Likes increased 580%

Total Reach increased 172%

Post Reach increased 335%

Engagement increased 143%

The team is encouraged and excited to keep up their efforts. They now feel a positive challenge to reach out to the Members more frequently through the day and they are continually thinking about what they can share via social media. They are determined to “beat Facebook.”

My challenge to you is to give this a try and see if you enjoy similar results. Give it a week for your efforts to kick in for measurable outcome. Leave a comment to let us know if this worked for you. If you’ve found another way to work around Facebook’s algorithm change, please leave a comment below so that we may all learn. I’m sure there are plenty of you who want to avoid paying for your content to be seen and feel that we should have to pay for our content to be seen by people who have liked our Page. Especially when most of those folks are Members and who have a genuine interest (and need) to stay connected.

I’ll make sure to update this post in another couple of weeks and share if this method of more frequent posts continues to positively effect levels of engagement and reach.

Five Tips to Help You Fall in Love with YOU!

Happy Valentines Day

I’m delighted to share with you a special Valentine’s Day edition of Beaming Bohemian. While you may be enjoying a romantic getaway or a single’s party with your best friends, I hope you’ll stop to take a moment to realize how much you are loved. Your partner, friends and family, as well as all those cheerleaders and supports in your life love and appreciate you so much. I hope that no matter your plans for this romantic holiday, you recognize how much love you have in your life!

With all this love floating around us, I must ask the question, how much do you love YOU? I hope you enjoy a healthy level of self-respect. Self-love is the foundation of how we treat others, how we behave and how we communicate. (I promise I’m not too far off the topic of communication today. See #4.)

For those of you who need a boost of self-esteem, I share with you on this Valentine’s Day…

Five Tips to Help You Fall in Love with YOU


1. Begin your day with love, positivity and purpose

For those who follow my blog or tweet with me, you have seen my daily statement. Before I get out of bed in the morning, I ponder what the day holds for me and say out loud:

“Today will be a great* day. I will listen, speak and act from the goodness of my heart. I will accept others as they are and treat everyone with kindness and compassion.”

*Sometimes I change this to fun, productive, traffic-friendly, amazing, successful, happy or whatever word best fits the day I have in store for me.

When I say this, I make a commitment to myself about how I will conduct myself that day, as well as remind myself that I am a good person with honest intentions. It is a strong-willed statement filled with love and respect.

2. Accept yourself to own your potential

You are awesome! You are amazing! You are unique. Out of the more than 7 Billion people on this planet, there is NO ONE like YOU!  You have unique qualities and characteristics that no one else has. You have something to offer the world which the world craves. Take some time to write yourself a love letter and tell yourself what you love about you. Once you accept yourself for the way you are, the way you were uniquely created, you will have the ability to own your potential and make that significant contribution the world needs and desires.

3. Play your own game of life – no comparisons

How often do you find yourself comparing your life to others you feel have “more” than you? STOP! Your life is yours to live. And remember, you have unique qualities that those other people wish they had. I found this quote which sums up the negative impact comparisons have on our self-respect:

“The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.” – Steve Furtick 

How true is that? We look as the messy parts of our life and compare that to someone else’s best moments. How is that a fair comparison? It’s not. So stop. Everyone has their own pain and struggles. No one is as polished and perfect as their highlight reel.

Your life is a solo performance. You are not in a band. Think of your life more like a game of golf versus a team sport like baseball. Your life is yours. Own it.

4. Do what honors and respects you – be true to yourself

When you maintain healthy levels of self-love and self-respect, everything you do should be a direct reflection of your true self. Your hobbies and activities, your work, the people you hang out with and what you communicate.

And on that note, be mindful of how you communicate. We see so much hateful, hurtful and mean speech, words filled with negativity. This is particularly true online. You have to ask, “Is this comment/post/tweet the real me? Am I being true to myself?” Make a point to communicate with honor and respect. The majority of people (and the good people you want to associate with) will appreciate you.

Whenever you get that “this is not me” twinge, stop what you are doing. Stop talking, stop doing, leave the party…whatever it takes. Say to yourself, “I love me more than this.”

5. It’s an adventure everyday.

This video and post will not instantaneously make you fall in love with yourself. And I admit that I have to work on this everyday. We all do. There is no quick fix for a healthy level of self-respect. Another quote for you:

“Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.” Margaret Runbeck

And that is the same for self-love. So with these tips in hand, let’s travel together, every day, in self-love and respect, in kindness and compassion, in positivity and purpose.

Happy Valentine’s Day. I wish you a day filled with lots of LOVE!

5 Tips to Help You Fall in Love with YOU

Four Tips for Better Networking


After attending a few business functions in the past couple of months, I see that few people are taking the opportunity to grow their contact base and network. I’ve even attended networking mixers where people did not bring their business cards or didn’t reciprocate when I handed them mine. Awkward! So with these experiences and the start to 2014, I thought I would share my four tips for better networking.


To expand on the points I mentioned in the video…


1. Always have a business card on you!

You never know who you will meet and where you might meet them. Tuck business cards into your purse, briefcase, wallet, car, gym bag and other things you carry so that if you happen to meet the one person who can help you get ahead in this world, you are not scribbling your information on a napkin. Or worse, you don’t exchange information at all.

STUDENTS: Set yourself and your personal brand apart by having contact cards made. Include your name, field of interest, and one or two ways to get in contact with you, including a social network, like Twitter. If you are a student-athlete, mention the sport you play or use graphics on the card to express this point. Vista Print is an affordable option. I like the designs available at MOO.com.


2. Be approachable and responsive at events.

If you are attending a business function or networking mixer, even a cocktail party, it’s time to be open to meeting new people. If you stand in the corner with your nose to your phone or speak only with your friends, you are missing out on the opportunity to expand and grow your network. What’s the point of attending a function in the first place?  On that note, if someone is brave enough to walk up to you and introduce themselves, by all means, be friendly and welcoming, engage in conversation and exchange business cards. If you are the host of what you call a “networking mixer” it is your job to introduce guests to each other and help people work the room.


3. Listen up!

Your secret ingredient to being a top-notch networker is your listening skills.  Develop the ability to listen to the person you’ve met and figure out what or who you have in common. Do you know someone who works at their company? Do you share the same love of the outdoors and hiking? Maybe they have a family and their kids go to the same school as yours. Maybe you are both UCSB Gauchos! Learning about your new contact will help you develop a better relationship with them and connect them to others in your network. The art of networking rests within the ability to make connections. If you approach people with the idea that you want to see what you can get out of them, you are not networking. If you recognize that your role is to connect people you know, you will be a very successful networker. The more you connect other people to each other, the more they will connect others to you. What you give, you will receive.


4. Connect online and follow up.

Once you’ve collected those cards, go home and jot down some notes. This will help you keep your memory in tact! What event did you meet at? What do you have in common? Was there a funny story you enjoyed? If you know who you want to connect them to, write their name down too. Figure out what social channel your new contact is on and connect. Follow up by introducing them to another person in your network and scheduling that coffee meeting you spoke about. Periodically going through your business cards will jog your memory of the people you know and set you up for success when you are out and about or at business-specific functions. Those notes you wrote on the cards will help you follow-up and nurture your relations.

STUDENTS: Your contact base may not be as large as a seasoned professional, but that doesn’t mean that you cannot play by these rules. At the next young executives gathering or a networking function, challenge yourself to meet five new people or ten new people, whatever you find reasonable for the event. Apply these tips and watch how fast your network grows.


And that’s four! Pretty easy to adopt and very effective tips for better networking. Remember, networking is not about you. It’s about helping connect the people you already know. This lands you a reputation as a good networker and that person who “knows everyone.” To grow in your career or expand your business, networking is an essential skill.

Now it’s time to challenge you. Take these four tips with you to your next business or networking function and let me know in the comments below how well it worked for you. Have a tip of your own? Leave a comment below and share with us! Besides, you never know who you might meet in the comment section. Think of it as digital networking.

Thanks for watching the video. If you want your weekly serving of positivity and purpose, as well as helpful tips for strategic communication, branding and social media, please make sure you subscribe to Beaming Bohemian news. It lands in your inbox every Friday!

Nick Saban, “The Process” and Tweeting

Nick Saban Alabama

photo via 60 Minutes

On the November 3rd edition of 60 Minutes, the program featured Alabama head coach Nick Saban. 60 Minutes was granted rare access to the football team’s practices and behind the scenes. It was a look at what makes Alabama so successful, namely, the coaching philosophies and strategies of Nick Saban.

The team chant is “Get your mind right.” You’ll hear Saban shout at his players, “Do it again,” in an effort to make sure that they do their job the right way, perfectly. He talks about creating a standard of high achievers.  The part which I loved the most was his talk about “The Process.” He teaches his players to, “Ignore the scoreboard. Don’t worry about winning. Just focus on doing your job at the highest level – every single play. The wins will follow.”

Nick Saban challenges his players to “play every play of the game like is has a history and life of its own.” He enjoys seeing his players take “pride in performance.”

While I had many flashbacks to the life lessons I learned from my tough-as-nails softball coach (a.k.a. “Dad”), I also kept thinking about how Nick Saban’s process could be so easily applied to our communication and what stories and messages we share with the world through social media.

If we approached every tweet, every post, every photo, every video with that same mentality, just think about how awesome our messages would become. If we stopped for one moment before we hit the send button and asked ourselves out loud, “Is this the best tweet of my life?” I wonder how quickly we would achieve more positive and purposeful communication? What examples could we set for others to follow? What pride in our performance might we gain?

Nick Saban may be on a quest for perfection on the football field, but his players know that it’s not just all about the game. He makes them better people. I have often said that we can tell a lot about our society by what and how we communicate. What we say to each other (in person and online) demonstrates the state of our community and how we treat each other, what level of respect we have for our fellow humans and how we feel about ourselves. If we focus on communicating at the highest levels (every message is your absolute best), then I believe we will grow communities of people who are nicer, kinder and more compassionate. We will be better people. And the wins will follow.

The full 60 minutes segment is included in the following video…

If for some reason the video doesn’t load, you can watch it here:  http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=50158430n

To watch the 60 Minutes Behind The Scenes on this story, follow this link:


This segment was also an extraordinary look at a truly amazing and inspiring man.

Eye Contact

In the past month or so, I’ve delivered several seminars on the topic of social media and personal branding to a variety of groups. During the sessions we usually have a healthy discussion about respect, and how we need to pay attention to how we treat each other, both on and offline. I am always impressed when students comment on how we have lost our social skills because of social media. That’s the moment I know there is hope for future generations!

I have heard some say that without face-to-face communication, it’s more difficult to respect someone as there is still a feeling we can “hide” behind our computers. I even ran across this article the other day, “Growing social media influence damaging our generation,” written by a University of Wisconsin, Madison student. This also gives me hope that young adults, as much as they love their phones and tablets, still crave eye contact and recognize the importance of in-person conversations.


Here’s another article from Inc. Magazine talking about The Lost Art of Eye Contact. As much as I am fascinated by all of the possibilities to connect with people online, and from all over the world, I remain convinced that we need to work just as much on our relationships offline and eyeball to eyeball as we do cultivating connections through technology. What are your thoughts?

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