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HOW TO: Get Social Media Literate

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Are you proficient in the use of social media for business communications?

In some ways, social media’s like a flame. In undiscerning hands, it can be dangerous.  Many companies are choosing to vest responsibility for social media at the bottom of the org chart. With digitally illiteracy rampant in the C-suite and board room, we’ll no doubt see more foolish smear campaigns, Twitter gag orders and silly black hat SEO attempts.

What would you do if your Facebook page got brand jacked?  What if your boss said she thought social media was a waste of time and money? Could you figure out and open her eyes to the opportunity that social presents for you? And could you track the ROI of your efforts to sustain and grow your budget allocation over time? Because if you can’t, you’re not proficient in social marketing. You may understand the “what” and the “why,” but to make social media work, you also need to know “how” to use it.

We all know everyone’s using social media. And we know how to post a Facebook status update and send a tweet.  That’s the “what” and “why”. But developing the practical, applied skills for “how” to use social media communications strategically to support corporate objectives is something else entirely.

If you don’t have these skills, you’re not alone. Most professionals in the workplace today still lack the ability to win buy-in and resources for social marketing initiatives, let alone put a program into place that works without relying on an outside specialist.

The problem is a dearth of hands-on training opportunities.  I’m talking about workshops where professionals can actually learn to use social media without getting upsold ever 5 minutes by a consultant. Yes, there are plenty of conferences where social media is covered, but you won’t get a comprehensive overview or participate in any hands-on exercises designed to teach you how to do it yourself. You won’t launch a blog, embed widgets, install Google Analytics and Feedburner or learn how to figure out the phrases your prospective customers are searching when they’re looking for you. You won’t learn the skills you really need.

Instead, you’ll hear mostly unpaid speakers seeking to recoup their travel costs through new business leads. They may throw you bone or two, but they’re going to focus on telling you all the great things they’ve done for their clients, avoid mentioning any of the nasty little mistakes they’ve made, let you ask one question and give you their contact info so you can hire them when you’re ready to get started.  And that’s a problem.  Because you’ll still be in dark.

In an effort to help change that, I’ve partnered with Social Media Today to bring you a new Hands-On Training workshop.  This September, I’ll be in Sydney, Singapore, London, Paris, Toronto, New York, Chicago and San Francisco and if you want real knowledge, please consider joining me.

If know already how many people are using social media and why you should be too, it’s time to learn to execute. And that’s going to require hands-on, practical instruction. No keynotes. No panel sessions. No PowerPoint. Just step-by-step, hands-on exercises. Ask as many questions as you like in a safe environment with other professionals.

For the last five years, I’ve been traveling the world conducting social media trainings for Fortune 100 companies, government agencies and small groups of committed professionals and here’s what they’ve had to say about my workshops.

I don’t teach at hotels.  All sessions are held at world-class computer training facilities. Bring your laptop, logon and learn to search engine optimize copy, build social media monitoring dashboards, launch blogs, produce and edit audio and video, launch Facebook Pages, master Linkedin and Twitter, build a social engagement dashboard and much, much more.

So if you’re ready to get serious about social media without getting burned, join us for our new Hands-On Training presented by Social Media Today. Space is limited to 30 people per city, and admission is first come, first serve.

Feel free to tweet me your questions.  Hope to see you there!

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