Revolution of Influence

I've always felt strongly that thoughts and ideas are the great equalizer of brands. No longer do we live in an era where only the largest of companies dictate their degree of influence based on how much money they spend to get in front of more eyeballs with one more 1-way message that's all about them.

The greatest influence can now be in the hands of the most helpful, transparent and personal brands of the world. Are you ready to be one of them? Caliber's Revolution of Influence blog aims to equip you with the strategies, content know-how, tools and trends to find the path that catapults you to newfound success.

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in social media
It’s not easy to put social media users into nice and neat demographic profiles, but we’re getting smarter about it by the day.

Personally, I like to err more on the side of how people behave online and level of interaction with social media when classifying them anyway over too much of the traditional “age/race/income” classifications. I’m not sure that all 65-year-olds shy away from social media, for example. They may have a Facebook page and/or LinkedIn profile while displaying a comfort level with e-mail and using search engines.
I thought it would be fun to imagine what would happen if the three biggest titans of advertising — Leo Burnett, Bill Bernbach and David Ogilvy — came back to civilization for one week to provide their views on our modern day developments, most notably social media. Their lunch meeting might sound like this:

Bill Bernbach: Gentlemen, great to see you again.

David Ogilvy: And you, old boy. How was everyone’s week in getting reacquainted with the world?
No matter what side of the left or right you sit on issues, the actions of one candidate pose a good lesson about where social media should rank in terms of political campaign clout.

Even though he’s running a distinct 3rd (or 4th if you were looking at his results here in Illinois), it’s a tad mystifying to me that Newt Gingrich has decided to pour so much of his budget into social media at this late stage of his campaign. Not that this is a bad move at all but the timing of it is unfortunate for him as it appears in his case that using social media seems like a method of last resort when campaign staffs get slashed and budgets dwindle. If so, that’s a lousy view of how to use it. If we didn’t learn anything from 2008 politics, it’s that social media has officially arrived as a standard and absolutely essential component of any campaign’s success, Republican or Democrat.
Seth Godin. Gary Vaynerchuk. Mitch Joel. Randi Zuckerberg. Keith Ferrazzi. Avinash Kaushik.

Hearing one of these influencers in the world of social media and marketing is rewarding in itself. Hearing from all of them in one day is what I call one awesome intelligence download. Which is exactly what you can do when you join me in attending a special conference called The Art of Marketingcoming to The Chicago Theatre onTuesday, April 24th.
The question before the Super Bowl every year seems to be “Are you watching more for the game or the commercials?” Being a person who practices the dark arts of advertising and marketing, I’ve usually been glued for the game and the commercials. Certainly not for the halftime shows.

In the agency world, being a person behind a Super Bowl spot has always been the pinnacle. The Everest. The bragging rights. The kick-butt answer to “Have I ever seen any of your work?”
I’m hearing some reaction to the Facebook changes that have to do with its Timeline feature and frankly, I think the hysteria is quite overblown.

Whoa. Let’s slow down and remember a couple things.

1) You don’t own Facebook.
They can do whatever they want and it’s your choice to participate in it for free. I didn’t say they always make moves that are right (even Mark Zuckerberg wouldn’t say that). But you and I both know they’re in control of the site at the end of the day.
I’ve noticed that generally, the cycle of love for new forms of media often goes like this:

1. New media tool arrives.

2. A few reports suddenly trickle in about the potential of the media tool.

3. Everyone jumps on the bandwagon of those reports, proclaiming it as the best thing since sliced bread.

4. Everyone clamors to be seen as experts and evangelists to their clients about the new media tool (whether or not they actually understand it in reality is debatable).
I love stories of how everyday people stumble into innovation for a traditional business model when they aren’t even looking for it.

Jacqui Cheng has a great article at Arstechnica.com spotlighting Rashid Temuri, who goes by @ChicagoCabbie on Twitter.  When I was standing outside freezing the teen temperatures the other day, I thought, “Wouldn’t it be great if I could tweet a cab and then get one fairly soon rather than hoping I get lucky by one seeing me?” Glad to see Temuri picked up on this idea, whether intentional or not, using social media to address a common problem – getting a cab to come to you when there aren’t any in plain sight in your location.
Happy 2012 to you all! I’m excited about the possibilities this year brings as I hope you are as well.

Coming out of the vacation period in which many companies took time off for a week, I was thinking about how the last week of the year is probably the least productive one. Even beyond that week, I’m sure you can agree that we should be allowed to take a week or two like that off to recharge the batteries – even those of us heavily entrenched in social media.

7 Social Media Resolutions for 2012

Posted by on in Personal Branding
I won’t even bother with the typical exercise goals – I’ll start with the goals that are easier for me to accomplish in 2012 in the social media realm. I’ll bet you may want to take a few of these for yourself too. 
Now that the Rahm Emanuel Question has been officially answered – in case you’re unclear, he’s officially on the ballot to stay – we can take a look at how our selection of candidates are faring in terms of educating voters in the online world. Sure, shaking hands at an El stop is great PR, but if there’s one thing that the Obama era has taught us, it’s that you can’t underestimate the power of social media in terms of spreading the word about your position on the issues. So I decided to judge our primary candidates – Rahm Emanuel, Gery Chico, Carol Moseley Braun and Miguel del Valle – on how well they are leveraging the online universe to accomplish this goal.

Now let’s check out the results.
What are you doing on the morning of Thursday, November 3rd before 9:00am? If you’re free and near downtown Chicago, I think you’ll walk into work energized and with a fresh perspective on how what you build internally can do a world of good externally in terms of your customer relationships.

I’ll be speaking at the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce along with my colleague, management consultant Rob Jager, on:

Building The Brand Within:
How To Deliver Unexpected Surprises For Your Customers 

“Could I just have some college kid do it?”

It’s a question I’ve heard before from small business owners when they consider the prospect of taking on social media. Before I answer that question, let’s do an experiment – and I genuinely don’t mean to sound like a smart-aleck when I say this, but rather to illustrate a point:

I’d like you to give up control of your company.

Not for a day or a week, but the next 3 months.
This photo from someecards.com (yes, proofers, there’s a misspelling in it, but you get the idea) pretty much sums up the “uproar” every time Facebook makes a change to their structure, layout and functionality.

Over 700 posts have been written about the shocking suicide of social media expert Trey Pennington and I won’t attempt to compete with such beautiful tributes that have already been said by Jay Baer, Mark Schaefer and others (Pennington was a popular South Carolina-based expert on social media and spoke at a variety of conferences to great acclaim – tragically, he took his own life on Sunday in a church parking lot). I’ll just add this thought: As a result of Pennington’s influence, many are writing about the renewed need to reach out and form meaningful offline relationships with people in the business world. They are so absolutely 100% right. But I hope people won’t dismiss the relationships we have online as artificial and without meaning either. True, there will be people that we will connect to on Twitter or Facebook who we will never, ever meet in person. But the key is to strive for balance between the two worlds. It means little to compile 50,000 followers on Twitter without injecting personal interactions into the mix. By the same token, just networking alone has its limitations because it doesn’t make you what John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing describes as a “converged” business. You need a component of being a “wired” business or you will lose out to competitors who are. They will blog, they will post, they will upload videos and they will share. Assuming it all isn’t self-promotional puffery, this sharing of knowledge helps expand on a person’s credibility in ways a business card exchange never could. It means something to walk into a room and have someone recognize you by your blog. It means something to meet someone and have that person research you further and find your insights posted all over the online realm.
Newspapers need a new pricing model that reflects the online age of readership.
I’ve got 3 ideas on how to help.


The front page of the suburban The Daily Herald, penned by the Editor, shouted the newspaper’s stance loud and clear: “Why our digital news cannot be free.

The 139-year-old newspaper has officially made the decision to charge for most content from the paper online. If you want to read The Daily Herald online from now on, you’re going to have to pony up $19.99 a month to do so. And by the way, no other paper in Chicagoland is charging digital readers on this kind of scale.
By now you’ve probably been bombarded with enough posts elsewhere on Google Plus, so you’ll be glad to know this isn’t one more of them. Because what I’m writing about has wider implications than just one tool. It has to do where your entire brand lives in the social media realm.


I’ve come to the conclusion that clearly in terms of social media we should all be on TumblrGoogTwitBookTube.

What’s the Plus Side, Google?

Posted by on in Media Trends
The concept of the phrase, “Facebook competitor,” almost makes you giggle at this point. Kind of like staring into the Grand Canyon and imagining then and there what could be better. Oh sure, there are other picturesque places. But it’s pretty hard to imagine them being more beautiful than what you’re looking at right now.

Facebook isn’t always beautiful. Far from it. But what it does have are a boatload of relationships between existing friends and family members. And that’s going to be pretty darn tough to break.
Hanging out in enough discussion forums, from LinkedIn to the AdAge Small Agency Diary blog/forum, I enjoy the generally good discourse that takes place between people. Opposing views can be great for the conversation. But what I can’t stand is when someone takes over the discussion with what can be only described as the equivalent of a filibuster.

I’m talking about the dreaded Comment From Hell.

You know what I’m talking about. The CFH is not a few paragraphs. It’s a 10-paragraph-or-more “look at how intelligent I am compared to everyone else here” comment. And it’s like tossing a grenade into the room. I’m exhausted trying to read the point, whether it’s good or not. Recently in LinkedIn, I had to power my way through a guy’s lengthy diatribe over why he wasn’t convinced on the power of social media. He didn’t think he’d seen enough proof that it worked.
It’s apparent to me that the very fact that some people wondering if journalism is “dead” in light of the decline of newspapers that there’s a whole lot here that’s getting overblown.

3 reasons why journalists still deserve a seat at the table in the era of new media:

1. All of us can’t repost stuff we find on the web at once and call it “news.”
We need people who take that aggregated flow of endless info – some of it useful and some of it not – and give it greater context. They help us decipher how that information fits together in a world where we’re getting a whole lot more information, not less. Some innovators feel that the world is a better place when info is compiled on top of itself in one infinite stream for us to figure out what we want to do with it. I disagree. Info is good, but we could use better ways to organize, compartmentalize and understand that info. Are we really there yet?

It's not hard to connect with us.

Are we a fit for you and you for us? We certainly could be. But let’s start simple. Take a look at your calendar and see when you have no more than 45 minutes to talk further about your goals while receiving greater insight on next steps.

Let's Schedule a Time

  • "Dan did a great job crafting our website's language as well as developing our brochure. His work was top notch and very impactful. We really appreciate the way he worked his "magic." Dan has our strongest recommendation."

    Michael Casaburi, CEO at Revulus Growth Partners
  • "I hired Dan to freshen up the writing on my website, and am delighted with the results. Dan GOT what my consulting business is about in a way that I hadn't experienced from anyone outside my field! More importantly, he was able to take that understanding and write clear and compelling language about my services – AND suggest format changes to the site to make it more effective. I highly recommend him."

    Dina Petrakis, Renovation Coach, Littlerock Construction, Inc.
  • "Dan is not only a person with creative ideas, he is a professional with high intelligence and integrity. He has tremendous energy and technical acumen. Dan is is focused and loves what he does...creating brands and building relationships. He is always willing to offer a helping hand and brings a strong dynamic to any team he is on. I highly recommend Dan to any company that is seeking exposure, growth, financial results and brand development."

    Chadia Meroueh, V.P., Auto Tech and Body

Get in touch

Caliber Phone and Email

Visit us on LinkedIn

Shoot us a message on Twitter

Visit us on Facebook

Or if Instant Message is more your thing...