Monthly Archives: December 2010

Christmas Drinks – Social In More Ways Than One.

Tonight, I’m heading into town for a few drinks with a top bunch of people.  ‘Nothing noteworthy about that’ I hear you cry, through the metaphorical void of cyberspace.  You’d be right.  Up and down Blighty’s shores, gaggles of people are venturing out to meet up with friends for a traditional Christmas drink or two.  Or three…  So why is my excursion any different?

Two words: social media.

Although still relatively recent, gone are the days when ‘online relationships’ consisted of serial loners conversing in chat rooms, avatars depicting mythical creatures that were as far-fetched as their chances of getting laid.

It’s 2010 and social media has exploded, transforming ‘online relationships’ into a phrase loaded with fantastic potential rather than connoting farcical voyeurism.  Social media is a facilitator; a tool that allows people to connect, build relationships, share.

And tonight, the band of merry men (or should I be PC and say ‘people’ – they are HR folk after all…) I’m meeting are all people with whom I converse on Twitter.  I have met everyone before at various #ConnectingHR events, but the relationships started – and have since continued – through the social media space.

Yes, some of the chat will revolve around work, I’m sure – although I have no doubt this will give way to more gibberish nonsense as the drinks flow!  But the fact remains – not that I’ve ever tried to ‘get anything out’ of these relationships (that would defeat the true purpose of being ‘social’), but I’m connected to several people professionally on LinkedIn, email, Twitter and Facebook as a direct result of building these relationships.

The point I’m trying to make?

I meet so many social sceptics who moan that ‘Twitter is simply a place to tell people what you ate for breakfast’.

Bull.

Just because you receive spam emails about Viagra pills, does that mean email as a concept is ineffective and doesn’t have a place in daily life?  Of course not – and the same is true for Twitter and social media.

So, I beg all you sceptics; learn from my experiences.  The #ConnectingHR folk I’m meeting tonight have genuinely enriched my life and over the past 12 months and also helped me out professionally on more than one occasion.

Still a sceptic?  You shouldn’t be.

Want to find out what I had for breakfast this morning, follow me on Twitter!

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Hire me. Seriously.

Make no mistake: I love the company I work for.  I’ve been lucky enough to work with some fantastic people; I’ve been given huge opportunities for personal growth; I’ve been mentored by some top guys and I have also had a lot of fun along the way.  However, in perhaps one of the most introspective blog posts I’ve ever written, I’ve acknowledged that it’s time for a change.

I’m not unhappy with my current role in any way; the time has simply come to step outside my comfort zone, take on a new challenge and get stuck into a new opportunity.  Whilst I have a rounded digital marketing skill-set, I believe that now is the time for organisations to really make use of social media.  Twitter has gone from strength to strength over the past 2 years, proving many of the doubters wrong.  If consumer brands don’t yet have a Facebook page, many people ask why.

Social media is here to stay – and I am PASSIONATE about it.

I’m very lucky to work for an incredible business that prides itself on its honesty and integrity.  Having talked with management and the CEO, I’ve cleared things in my mind and decided that it is time for a new challenge – and I’m lucky to work for fantastic people that allow me to make this public.  This freedom to openly express this interest has allowed me to be open, honest and start putting the feelers out – which for me personally, is a wonderful opportunity.

So here I am – at this bold, challenging and scary crossroads.  It took a lot of thinking and a lot of courage to admit to myself that I need to challenge myself once again – but here I am.  I will be blogging about the job search process over the next couple of months and keeping you all updated on how I’m getting on.  But as we start, what am I looking for?

•    Social media role within a great consumer brand OR as part of a friendly agency
•    The opportunity to build, implement and maintain a diverse SM presence
•    The opportunity to learn from experienced digital marketers as part of a friendly and passionate team
•    Ideally, working somewhere in north London / north of London
•    Scope to take on other bits of digital marketing e.g. blogging, e-marketing, SEO etc.
•    As much free coffee as I can drink
•    An eccentric dress code – military, spaceman, cowboys etc.
•    A salary of £1 million.

OK, so the last three may be some facetious fun, but the rest is pretty much bang on the money!  And if you’re reading this wondering what I can bring to the table, you could always check out my LinkedIn profile, but here’s a snapshot:

•    Social Media – setting up branded presences on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Blogger, WordPress, YouTube, iTunes, Delicious.  Community management and engagement
•    Strong copywriting background (online & offline) including SEO
•    E-marketing experience – building and sending emails to c. 30,000
•    Web analytics (Google)
•    Garageband / iMovie editing on Mac OS

Plus I’m a pretty nice guy (I like to think), can make excellent cups of tea, contribute a bit of fun to an office and have impeccable taste in music…

So here we go – I’ve officially kicked it off.  I’m hoping that ‘putting myself out there’ doesn’t result in an overwhelming silence, but I’m taking the first step in looking for a new challenge.  You can find me in the following places:

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/callumsaunders
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/callumsaunders
Email: callumsaunders @ yahoo.co.uk