What Do You Want Your Legacy To Be?

2016 was a rough year for many of us. The end of the year left a lot of us disappointed, uncertain, and frustrated. I have been thinking a lot about how I can make my little world as good of a place as I can.

A few weeks ago, I read the blog by CC Chapman – Legacy. In it he talks about how we each will leave behind a legacy, that we will never know… and it resonated with me. I asked him to come up and speak at this month’s breakfast.

As usual, he was great and left many of us inspired, hopeful, and ready to do good.

During the event, I asked our attendees to think for a few moments about what they want their legacy to be. If you took a moment and thought about the footprint you wanted to leave behind… would that change how you operate, how you arrange your to-do list, or what you spent your time on?

Here are some of the responses from our attendees:

We want to inspire people to protect Maine’s environment. Make people feel a part of our mission through actions and interactions.
– Beth, Natural Resources Council of Maine

Chaos to clarity guide.
– Sara, The Dreamy Dragonfly

Show you that your tourist dollars have unimaginable power.
– Evan, Longer Vacations

Give people confidence to cook creatively. Live Excellently.
– Maddie, Fyood Kitchen

Crack open our view of people with differences and redefine success for all Maine people.
– Kristen, Spurwink

Make photos that matter. Now and later.
Whitney J. Fox

I want to leave a legacy of love and bravery – to look back and know that my life inspired people to be more brave, more bold, more creative with their own lives.
– Abbie, From the Nest

She helped to grow the green economy in Maine and helped people live better lives.
– Heather, The Sunrise Guide

I want to be known for being innovative and creatine really good content for our guests.
– Alyssa, Stonewall Kitchen

Launch Branding Compass!
– Emily, Visible Logic

She brought art and color to my practical life.
Helen Rebecca

Really cares (for real) about the organization, the success of small business, and the state of Maine.
– Jennifer, Maine SBDC

To have my clients see their worth and build their self confidence through skin care.
– Kimberly, Nourish Skin Care Studio

I would like to ask all of you the same thing and please share your answers with me. What do you want your legacy to be? What do you want to be remembered for? What will be the footprint you leave behind?

I would love to add them to this post or share them on social media over the next month or so. I think this is a great exercise as we head into a new year. Thanks in advance for your responses!

Last night we celebrated 75 Social Media Breakfast Maine events. We had a special nighttime event at Red Thread, in One City Center.

group-photo-smbme

Photo credit: MaineToday Media

Reflecting on the night and last 7 years (eek!), I realized I need more than a quick Facebook post.

First, I have to thank the wonderful community that IS SMBME. This event isn’t about a person or a company, it is about a group of people who are curious, smart, friendly, inclusive, and helping shape business in Maine. What started as 12 nerds (aka “early adopters”) in a conference room, has turned into a group of people who support each other and a monthly event with about 100 attendees each month.

mike-sobol-smbmekyle-smbme

Photo credit: Amazing DJ Music (Sound and Photography)

I want to thank our speakers, Mike Sobol and Kyle Poissonnier, for their interesting and inspiring presentations. Mike talked to us about challenging our assumptions, trying new things, and gave us examples from his work experience where what ‘worked’ wasn’t what people assumed would. Kyle inspires me so much. We asked him to come back again to talk about his recent Just A Kid From Maine release at Catalyst For Change Wear. He had an idea, asked his audience their thoughts, brought it to market and they reached their goal in about a day. A powerful and inspiring story!

A photo posted by April D. Cohen (@soporealtor) on

I want to thank our sponsors. The Portland Press Herald, Gorham Savings Bank, OTT Communications, Mainely SEO, The Maine Real Estate Network, Noyes, Hall & Allen, and Agents of Change. It was especially fun to have some sponsors that helped us really get our start come back for this special event. Thank you all so much!!

stephanie-michelle-chandra-smbme

Photo credit: MaineToday Media

I want to thank Stephanie from Red Thread for being an amazing hostess. I have hosted many an event and have NEVER felt as confident in the space and event prep. Stephanie took things off my hands that have never been offered before. Never. She made my prep for the event so much easier. I can’t thank you enough. If you haven’t been, please go by Red Thread and say ‘hello’. Beautiful space and some great ideas that you can execute in your own office.

I want to thank MaineToday Media and Amazing DJ Music (Sound and Photography) for capturing some great photos from the evening. It is wonderful to see a fun event captured so well in images. We loved having you there!

Lastly, thank you for all of you who attended last night. I know night events are hard, Fridays are hard, rainy nights are hard… but you made it and I truly appreciate it! It was a great time. I can’t wait to see where this community takes us all next!

A photo posted by April D. Cohen (@soporealtor) on

Thank you to everyone who braved the icy roads for breakfast with Alex Steed of Knack Factory, Erin Ovalle of MaineLife and Tim Cotton of the Bangor Police Department. It was a little raw out there, but so worth it. If you missed out, here are some takeaways.

You can’t fake it.

Be real. People are drawn to what’s honest. If you’re trying to be something that you’re really not, no matter how hard you try to fake it, people will see it.

Knack Factory sees the most success from videos that they actually want to make – the content that they care about and find interesting. This content isn’t promotional. It’s not manufactured. Check out the example below and tell me it doesn’t make you want to work with them.

“I Grew Up Here” by Jen Michaud, Timber Sports Competitor + Poet || KNACK FACTORY from Knack Factory on Vimeo.

Erin Ovalle spent years trying to fit the mold of who everyone told her she should be. It wasn’t until she decided to drop the act and just be who she really is – and wants to be – that she really started to succeed and grow.

Tim Cotton of Bangor PD has grabbed the attention and gained a loyal following of people around the world because he’s a character and he has an authentically good personality. The stories that he posts aren’t contrived or planned. He’s self-deprecating and isn’t afraid to make fun of serious topics.


Don’t overthink it.

None of the speakers said they spend a lot of time planning what they do. Tim finds that it’s best to let the ideas flow – write the post first and come up with a reason for it post afterwards. Over planning leads to second guessing. Creating and sharing content in the moment adds timeliness and authenticity. It is ok, however, to plan the timing of your posts to ensure that people see them.


Respond to people – even the trolls.

Ok, maybe not always the trolls. It depends on the type of troll and your own personality. Do what is comfortable for you. It is important to remember that this is social media. Social – it’s about being friends with people first. Take the time to engage with people – read and respond. Have that conversation. A little kindness goes a long way.

Thank you to our fabulous speakers. You guys inspired and entertained. What a way to end a week. Of course, none of this would have been possible if not for our generous sponsors. Thank you Portland Press Herald, Agents of Change Digital Marketing Conference, Gorham Savings Bank, and Vreeland Marketing for fueling our bacon addiction and helping us get our learn on.

Our special evening edition of SMBME was so much fun – and not just because the B stood for beer!

Our panel of Maine brew pros made the night what it was – fun, inspiring and informative. If you missed it, or got a little too wrapped up in the beer portion of the event, here are the nuggets of wisdom I walked away with. Here are some photos thanks to Judy Beedle Photography as well.

Our Panelists:Beer SMBME panelists
Peter Jensen Bissell – Bissell Brothers
Daniel Kleban – Maine Beer Company
Don Littlefield – Maine Brew Bus
Mat Trogner – Allagash

  • Don’t engage the trolls. Do reach out to and empathize with people who have legitimate gripes
  • Don’t post something and sit there clicking refresh to see what happens. Get out there and make something new. Always be creating.
  • If you have a great product and a great story. The rest will take care of itself.
  • Learn from what others are doing successfully. Do those things, but make them even better.
  • Show your fans what’s happening at work – and play. Let them live vicariously through you.
  • Always be thinking about what might be interesting. Do your best to capture it in the moment.
  • Think ahead to show progress in the future. Example: Taking a photo of founders in their new, empty space and following up with the same shot over time.
  • Don’t sell on social channels. Build a community. The results will be tenfold.
  • Be personal.

Not too shabby for a beer-fueled SMBME without bacon! Thanks to Maine Brew Bus and Agents of Change Digital Marketing Conference for buying us all a round, to Whiskey Drive Lumber for the sweet beer openers and to the rest of our sponsors: Portland Press Herald, Gorham Savings Bank and Vreeland Marketing – we could not do this without you!

What a great lineup of speakers we had at our 66th Social Media Breakfast Maine. Each presentation complimented the next. We hope you all walked away feeling inspired and smarter. I know I did.

Andrea Berry of Firefly Partners kicked things off with an overview of best practices for fundraising with social media. She talked about why you shouldn’t ask for money and reminded us how important it is to say thank you and provide recognition. Another thing that seems simple, but is often forgotten, is giving supporters the tools and content to share with their networks. Andrea also talked about telling people “why you.” This is where content is key. Use infographics and other content types to show people where their money went, or where it will go.

Holly Sherburne of Bowdoin College followed with her peer-to-peer #bowdoinoneday fundraising campaign that provided examples of many of the things that Andrea previously touched on. One of the things she said really summed it up: “people are your social currency for content and calls to action.” Direct asks will not work. You need your supporters to do it for you. Without the participation of alumni, her campaign would not have surpassed its goals. She also used video content throughout the campaign.

BowdoinOne Day – Participation Matters from Bowdoin College on Vimeo.

BowdoinOne Day – Thank You! from Bowdoin College on Vimeo.

Holly also mentioned that she used tintup.com to aggregate all #bowdoinoneday content on the Bowdoin website.

spose-yard-sale-kickstarterRyan Peters, aka Spose, finished the morning by sharing how he used Kickstarter to tap his loyal fan base and raise over $28k to create videos to make sure that his music was heard by as many new listeners as possible. Why videos? Because visuals matter and as Ryan put it himself, “you don’t have a song unless you have a video for that song.” This was a 30-day campaign so he knew he had to work to keep things fresh. Keys to success? Create urgency. Make it exclusive. And show people, don’t tell them. If you tell them before you show them, they won’t care because you already told them. In this fast moving river that is social media, you only have a second to grab people’s attention. Ryan knows how to make that second count. And he respects the karma of social currency.

Here’s the full campaign details and video.

Thanks to everyone who came out, to our speakers for dropping all of their knowledge and to our sponsors for making it all possible: Portland Press Herald, Agents of Change Digital Marketing, Conference, Gorham Savings Bank, Vreeland Marketing, and Others! Fair Trade Coffee

Carl Natale needed a full weekend to process all the information we threw at him at last weeks breakfast. Sarah Wallace and Brad Lawwill did a really great job covering why having a social media policy is important and how to get started. Carl wrote another really great recap of the morning and included both presenters slides.

Read Carl’s full recap here.

Read more about SMBME #7 on our archive page

Engaging speakers, free goodies and delicious bagels. This is how EVERY morning should start! SMB Maine had its second installment this Friday (9/18) at MPX in Portland. This month’s topic was “Creating Trust and Communities Online.” SMBME Attendees

Kicking off a morning of great presentations was Fred Abaroa, Marketing Imagineer from Costa Vida Mexican Grill.  Fred explained how getting people to “Know” you, “Like” you, “Trust” you and “Buy” you is essential to building trust and personality, and he showed some convincing stats as to why an online personality is worth building!

Fred believes that people should recognize your name and that you should “Have an answer” for all possible questions for your industry and services. Solution based conversation is essential for trust. Do not become one of the “7 Deadly Creatures;” The Sucker, The Puker, The Topper, The Whiner, Narcissus, The Vulture and Mr. Halitosis.

Alex Steed, the second presenter, is a communication consultant for nonprofit organizations and advocacy groups. Alex explained that data mining is a means to an end, and took a neutral stance as to whether this is a “good” or “bad” thing.

Alex may be the first person to ever bring up Michel Foucault in a discussion of social media.   He used a model of power defined by information – those in trouble give confessions to others, the confessed to come up with a diagnosis, and from that diagnosis there comes a prescription (did I tell you this all happened at 8:30 in the morning?)

He demonstrated this principle in practice by revealing his “obsession” with discovering information (mostly personal!) about people in need of non-profit services.  He told a crazy criminal story about a man and a woman in a Bonnie & Clyde-esque misadventure stealing items from cars and confessing it with no short amount of drama online.  Alex was able to follow the whole thing because these real names of these people were revealed in the paper, and a few searches later he was able to find their social media profiles.

Some may call this stalking, but to a Social Marketing guru, this is client research!

Our final speaker, Franklin McMahon delivered practical tips on making your social networking profiles work effectively for your personal brand. Making your personal profile pictures look as professional as possible will benefit you.  So will making your audience the stars, interviewing people who inspire you and positioning yourself as an expert are all great tips for trust and transparency. Franklin also adds that winning over people in the middle or “on the fence” is key to succeeding in marketing your personal brand – those who love you or hate you have already made up their minds.

After the speakers delivered their valuable content, we raffled off a few copies of Chris Brogan and Julien Smith’s “Trust Agents,” fired off some flying monkey and gave away free tickets to two upcoming social media events “Social Media FTW” and “The Big Conference.” Congratulations to the winners and a big Thank You to all attendees! We hope to see you at next month’s SMB Maine!

Check back here next week and we will have video and each presenters slides on our archive page.

Please contact us if you would like to see a particular topic covered at Social Media Breakfast Maine, would like to sponsor, donate an item to our raffle or be on our mailing list to hear about other upcoming breakfasts!

Thank you,
Kyle

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March 15th 2019

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