Thursday, March 4, 2010

We're Everywhere (Almost)

I came across this excellent post listing all sorts of Social Media sites and their various uses. A common misconception about SM is that all of the facilitation platforms are the same and can achieve the same functions. This is a definite myth. There are many sites that can be used for various functions, and can often even compliment each other. Jeanne and I use Twitter religiously, and it facilitates traffic to this blog, we've also started a network on NING, which you should all join! Many bloggers use flickr to show off their photos. Experimenting with the different formats of Social Media can be time consuming, but its like unlocking trophies on your PS3, it feels SO good.

In addition to this blog, you can currently find us on:


..and eventually many more!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Be Your Own Brand - But Tell Us About It!

Once I was once just a voice in the crowd. Now I am my own brand.

This is the power of Twitter and social media. It used to be that branding oneself was done in a boardroom full of high powered executives with all the money, all the resources and all the Armani this side of the Atlantic. Your brand was chosen for you based on what would sell, and how easily you could slither into those leather pants in that high powered Cola-sponsorship ad.

Well my friends, the times they are a-changing.

It is no longer just pop stars and fast cars that have the accessibility to brand themselves. Thanks to social media, we all have that choice. It may take a lot of leg work and a little pizazz, but each of us now has access to a platform which allows us to choose how we present ourselves to the world. As a writer, I now have the opportunity to show you who I am, allow you some insight into my world, or tell you a story. Not only can I brand myself any way that I choose, I can create a new brand if I don't like any of the existing products!

Perhaps I'm waxing philosophical here, so I'll try to bring it in. What I'm getting at is that we are interested in hearing your Social Media love stories. How has Social Media changed your life? How has Twitter provided direct success? Motivation? Community? We want to to hear your firecracker of a story, your fail-whale of a tale. Tell us how you fell in love with Twitter, or what Social Media has done for you lately. Tell us what your dreams are for the future.

If you would like to write a guest post for this blog on how Social Media has changed your life, please email us at we can provide you with a topic to write about, or if you have an amazing tale that is dancing on the tip of your tongue, let us know. We can't wait to hear from you!

Social Media and the Creatives by David Spies

If you’re one of the millions navigating the social media highway, there’s no definitive route. Social media is ever-expanding. Think the “Big Bang Theory” with a bazillion “1’s” and “0’s”.

Now think about the content you have to offer your potential audience... It can get a little overwhelming. That’s why it is best to have a social media plan to help you navigate the many different media outlets that are available. Have you claimed your handle (company name/personal name) on various social networks? Here’s a great tool (NameChk) that lets you see if your name is available.

It’s definitely a good idea to secure your name/company brand name on the various social networks that are currently available. This will ensure that you have a wide-ranging platform to get your message out there.

Social media and the ever-expanding list of social media platforms lend itself to creative entrepreneurs searching for the audience they deserve. Writers, screenwriters, filmmakers and authors around the world are embracing social media for the outlet that it provides. Social media sites allow millions of people from all backgrounds the access to present and share their work with the world. People can connect with individuals, sign up in groups with a similar interest of study, and join discussions to share ideas. The possibilities are limitless.

If you’re an individual that likes to take charge and have basic knowledge of websites/html, a blog is another great way of sharing your ideas and talent with the world. In addition to providing updated posts to your own blog, many bloggers welcome feedback and comments on their posts as well. When it comes to sharing ideas of inspiration and knowledge, it’s a two-way street. If you find that someone has taken the time to not only read your material, but has also provided feedback or a comment, it’s a social media common courtesy to reciprocate with some form of communication.

Whether you’re ramping up a social media platform for a new book, a screenplay, or you just finished a short movie, you’ll have to apply your brand image into your communications. Once you start communicating material to your audience, you’ll want to ensure that your messages are clear and concise.

Think of social media as your neighbor. You may see them every day, or even better, they may see you. My point is you don’t necessarily have to have a strategy plan to execute every single piece of information. Just be yourself. Being able to recognize the long-term value in relationships is the key to securing a good name for yourself in the social network you create.

Social media provides people the opportunity to connect with individuals they never would have if it were not for the Internet. You may find yourself conversing with many different people from all backgrounds and skill sets. You may even receive praise or a note of encouragement from a celebrity. Believe me, this does happen. One thing that you want to always practice is professionalism. Treat others how you would like to be treated, with respect.

It’s been almost a year since I started my twitter account. In this last year, I’ve made numerous contacts in the writing community, the film industry and various other industries across the globe. It has been a wonderful, learning and growing experience.

In the last two years, I’ve written two feature-length screenplays and one sitcom pilot. This year I decided to enter a couple of screenwriting contests. I’ve entered my recently completed feature-length comedy (Film Festival) into Scriptapalooza and after a careful and calculated rewrite; I’ve also entered my horror screenplay (Sasquatch the Movie) in the BlueCat Screenplay competition. In addition to being a practicing screenwriter, I’ve built and maintain a screenwriting blog at:

I enjoy sharing my knowledge and the articles I write with other writers and the many creative’s that visit my blog. I’ll continue to dedicate the time I have to write and share my inspiration and thoughts with the world.  

What social media means to me: connecting with people, forging friendships, helping others.
      David L. Spies (@davidspies