September 23rd GRSML Tweetup at the GRPM

September 15, 2010

This month’s Grand Rapids Social Media Lunch is at the Grand Rapids Public Museum where we can tour the ArtPrize Art displayed. This is a free event open to everyone – there is no charge to enter the Museum during ArtPrize. There will be a tent outside selling hot dogs, brats and burgers (not clear on Vegi offerings. Bring your iPhone and bump(TM) – Bring your iPad and show it off – Bring your biz cards and network. From Noon to when ever you decided to leave (come early if you like), you can tweet up with your fellow GRSMLers – and check out some fantastic ArtPrize works.

We have reserved room 2M (it’s a classroom) at noon on the 23rd – meet up there for a chance to win some ArtPrize Swag!


And We’re Back

January 19, 2010

As you may have noticed our last “meeting” was back in Nov.  We have been watching at the growing social media community in Grand Rapids with enthusiasm as well as the multiple events that have popped up.  We have seen new users come in and create new events and other outlets for learning have helped create a community that is energized and continually trying new things.  GRSM is almost a year old and with that we are going to be trying a few new things.

GRSM will be focusing on smaller topics, more focused content and niche solutions.  We want to listen to the community and bring in people and minds that can answer the questions that will move individuals and companies further.  To do that we are going to be focusing our meetings toward a specific platform or strategy.  While most of these topics will be for a larger audience we understand that some will benefit more than others.  With that being said, we are announcing our next meeting.

The next GRSM lunchtime meeting will be held at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation’s Building at 12pm on Jan. 27th. GRCF is located at 185 Oakes Street SW Grand Rapids, MI. (map). The topic for this meeting is “Tracking: Monitor Engagement.”  We will have a few speakers going through what they do to help monitor the impact of their efforts.  We will show methods for tracking Twitter and Facebook.  We will be working through how to integrate this into your current tracking programs along with how to take this information and adapt it to be explained and referenced.

This is a lunch event, but we are not providing lunch, so please visit local eateries and bring your food on in. Founder’s and Ritz Koney are both local places, along with many others. Come on out and invite a friend or co-worker that may have some interest. Spread the word and lets make this our largest event so far.

Again we will be live streaming the event for those that cannot attend, the stream can be found in the Tools tab up above. Also see the sidebar to follow us on Twitter.

March Wrap-Up

March 27, 2009

First off, we want to thank the GRAM for graciously allowing all of us social media types to meet in their conference room, to Paul Kortman (@namtrok) for presenting, and to all of you who made it out yesterday. Even though this was just our second meeting we are humbled and pleased with the reception that you all have shown; however, we are aware of some aspects that could use improvement. So if you have any suggestions please tell us! We will continue to work to make this time as relevant as possible and would appreciate your input on appropriate topics for discussion.  You can comment on this story, direct message us on Twitter @GRSM, leave a comment on the Facebook Fanpage (yes we have one!), or simply email us at grandsocial [at]

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Suggested Reading for 2/26

March 3, 2009


40 of the Best Twitter Brands and the People Behind Them [Mashable]

+ 140 word interviews with 40 of the best brands on Twitter.

8 Useful Tips to Become Successful with Twitter [Smashing Magazine]

+ Title says it all.

50 Ideas on Using Twitter for Business [Chris Brogan]

+ Mr. Brogan shares 50 ways businesses can use Twitter

16 Examples of Huge Brands Using Twitter [Search Engine Journal]

+ SEJ takes a look at 16 of the largest brands on Twitter and how they are making it work for their purposes

Everything Twitter

+ Blog reviewing the latest Twitter apps and news

Facebook Fan Pages

Why You Need to Make a Facebook Fan Page for your Website NOW! [Search Engine Journal]

+ SEJ explains why your website needs its own Facebook fan page

Best Practices for Facebook Fan Pages [Radical Trust]

+ A comprehensive multi-part series detailing the best practices for effectively leveraging Facebook fan  pages

Guide to Facebook Fan Pages: Destinations vs. Collaborative Conversation Spaces [Marketing Profs]

+ A guide to making your Facebook fan page a conversation space and not merely another destination

Facebook Pages Help Guide [Facebook]

+ Complete how-to guide for setting up and administering Facebook fan pages, straight from the source

All Facebook

+ Up to the minute blog providing news & insight about Facebook and Facebook apps

GRSML Lunch: Engaging Your Clients & Customers

March 3, 2009

One of the most lauded aspects of social media is its potential for fostering customer interaction.  Social media provides marketers with multiple avenues to engage their clients and customers, as well as monitor reputation and brand.  Currently, there are two primary tools for customer engagement: Facebook Fan Pages and Twitter.  Each provides a unique way of interacting with the general public. Both can provide leverage, but it is important to understand the advantages and disadvantages of both of these popular social media applications.


As anyone who watches CNN or any major news broadcast can tell you, Twitter is all the rage these days.  Twitter, in a nutshell, works similarly to Facebook status updates—with one key difference.  Users have the ability to reply to ‘updates’.  This makes Twitter a great way to provide dialogue between a brand and its customer base, but it does not come without its potential problems.


+ Two-way messaging: allows for conversation and interaction

+ Ability to search for specific words or phrases: useful in brand/reputation monitoring, market research

+ Can be used to build a brand or persona for a business: puts a human voice and personality behind a brand


– Opens up avenue for public criticism: be prepared to respond and know how to respond effectively

– Can be time-consuming: frequently updated accounts are more likely to attract followers and spark conversation

– Identity crisis: do we create a corporate Twitter account or a personal account?  Do you speak as yourself or as a corporation?

Facebook Fan Pages

Another popular method for businesses to engage their customer base is Facebook’s “Fan Page” feature.  Like Twitter, it is a free service that allows businesses to create what is essentially a corporate Facebook profile.  It works similarly to your own Facebook profile, but with a few key differences.  And once again, just like Twitter, there are advantages and disadvantages to Fan Pages.


+ Multi-media: ability to feed a blog through the page, send “updates” to fans, add photos, create events, etc.

+ Potential to go “viral”: as users become fans, the action will show up in their friend’s feeds hopefully attracting more fans

+ Large audience: Facebook is growing by 700,000 users a day


– Does not promote dialogue: generally more one-way and informational than conversational

– Time consuming: publishing notes is involved and requires manual HTML formatting

– Fans are not automatically notified of new content: little incentive for return visits

Ultimately, Twitter is the winner for promoting true conversation and interaction.  Don’t get me wrong: Facebook Fan Pages do have incredible potential, but need some tweaks and updates to fully realize the potential that exists. Its clear both forms of social media have their place in the business world.   Both services provide a way for your customers to interact with your business and feel as though they have a voice and someone who is listening on the other end, which ultimately encapsulates what social media is all about.

Marketing with the Masses

February 17, 2009

Social Marketing is an area with a large scope. With our meetup we are planning on starting with an introduction, not only to the services out there to use but also introducing each other. Our plan for the event is to be open, sharing, with a focus on being both teachers and students. We encourage all to come with their knowledge and experience, ready to share and participate in helping the group grow in knowledge.

The format will probably consist of a major topic that will be presented and discussed, with further conversation revolving around individuals experience and tips. We hope to have one or two presenters each meeting that will start the conversation. Followed by a time for group learning and exploration of the ideas presented. We want the needs and curiosity of the group to help guide the future topics, along with new developments in the industry to help trigger the path.

We are working on a date on time for the first meetup, we are also looking for a location to have the event so if you have and suggestions please let us know. We also would like to build a list of the Social media sites and services that we should be covering, each industry and area of marketing uses different services, by being aware of what you are using it will help us structure each following event to get the most out of our time.

If you have specific questions or ideas for the topics to be discussed please feel free to send them our way either by messaging us on twitter or sending an email to grandsocial [a] gmail .com