Manage Your Digital Presence: Social Media Marketing for Professionals at Adobe Days

adobe-daysLove designing with Adobe? Love learning what’s new, now and next in social media marketing?

Then, you need to be at Adobe Days.

Hosted by Ascend Training, located in Chicago’s historic Fine Arts building on Michigan Avenue, the event is on September 29 and 30.

Two jam-packed days – featuring dozens of presentations – will cover all of Adobe’s Creative Cloud applications, best practices, and time-saving tips and tricks.

Whether your focus is video, web, illustration, development, UX or SEO, Adobe Days will advance your skills and hone your creative edge.

Thanks to Jori Curry, founder of Ascend Training, for inviting me to present “Managing Your Digital Presence: Social Media for Professionals.” As an Ascend Training faculty member, I will be teaching a two-day digital marketing workshop on October 6 and 7.

The presenters represent the who’s who in the creative world. Paul Trani, Adobe’s Worldwide Evangelist will open the conference.

Adobe Days Chicago Event Sessions

Here’s a look at the program. What sessions interest you?

Register for Adobe Days.

(*Session Topics Subject to Change)

Keynote with Paul Trani
Adobe Evangelist Paul Trani will deliver our keynote.
Linked Assets in Creative Cloud Libraries: Photoshop, Illustrator & InDesign
Join the linked revolution with Creative Cloud Libraries. Create in Photoshop see automatically update across InDesign, Illustrator and other Photoshop documents. Collaborate with teams, and change your workflow! –Paul Trani
InDesign Interactive: HTML5 Web & Tablet Apps!
Turn your InDesign documents into animated digital apps & files for iPad, Android and desktop! Use HTML5 and Twixl Publisher to create accessible, interactive, cross-platform files. – Laurie Ruhlin & LN Vandercort
Managing your Digital Presence: Social Media for Professionals
Take control of your online presence! Advance your branding, content marketing and social media skills with LinkedIN, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. –Barbara Rozgonyi
Top 5 Graphic Design Trends for 2015
Design principles are everchanging. Learn about the latest typography trends and why lowercase is here to stay. Use minimalist designs, impactful elements and negative space to help elevate your imagery. –Susan L. Smith
Alternate Layouts in InDesign
Learn to use InDesign in a flexible, alternative universe. Create Liquid Layout rules, multiple layouts and keep consistent styles across layouts. Keep your business cards, iPad app, and brochures all in one document! –Erica Gamet
Why do Designers Need to Learn HTML? Designing for Digital Part I
Designers need to learn coding basics to avoid things getting lost in translation when passed on to the developer. Learn how code can restrict or expand your designs, and get a better sense of what’s realistic BEFORE you get started. –Rich Humphreys
Noon – 1:15pm: Lunch on your Own
Brilliant Illustrator Infographics & Icons
Learn to use Illustrator to create beautiful, tangible, modern imagery! Use Illustrator like a pro to make your infographics that stand out from the crowd, and logos that will impress –Laurie Ruhlin
So You Think You Can Style?
So many InDesign users understand the concept of styles, but struggle when it comes to putting them into practice. Learn advanced styling functions to streamline your workflow. –Erica Gamet
Designing so your Developer Doesn’t Want to Strangle You: Designing for Digital Part II
Learn crucial Photoshop skills to design with CSS & HTML. Ensure your designs are pixel-perfect on multiple devices, see new exporting functions that make creating assets a snap! –Rich Humphreys

Photoshop Filter Magic
There is more to filters than Gaussian Blur. Photoshop CC 2015 enables us to create spectacular effects with filters. Create amazing effects with lighting, perspective with Vanishing Point, Blur Gallery & more. –Jori Curry
InDesign Tips ON FIRE!
Join InDesign gurus Erica Gamet and Laurie Ruhlin for the hottest tips and tricks to take your projects even further. –Laurie Ruhlin & Erica Gamet
Don’t Get Left Behind! Create Video for Mobile
Connect with YouTube’s 1 billion daily mobile viewers and create video for your website! Learn to create optimized video for mobile devices. –Rob Schulz
Layers on Steroids
Hold onto your hat, because these are not your Grandmother’s layers! Take the fasttrack to Smart Objects, Embedded Linked Images, Masking and much more! –Jori Curry
SEO: Tips for Rockstar Rankings
Pull back the curtain on SEO and discover how to raise your Google rankings. Learn how to rise to page 1 with the 200 factors in Google’s algorythms, Understand where keywords, responsive design, and content-driven link building all fit in. –Tom Dupuis
Adding Amazing 3D Elements to your Designs
Easily integrate 3D animations into your video for the web. Cinema 4D Lite is now part of After Effects. It’s never been a better time to enter the world of 3D. – Sean Frangella
Photoshop Retouching and Camera RAW
Retouching has never been easier! Open the curtain behind Camera RAW and get stunning results applying Exposure, Noise Reduction, Sharpening, Local Adjustments, Perspective Correction and the new Dehase! –Patty Carroll
Join the Acrobat DC Revolution
Acrobat DC’s new interface is changing everything you thought you knew about PDF’s. Send, sign & track digital files seamlessly and collaborate across devices. Take even the worst scan and turn it into an editable PDF…with matched fonts! –Jim Maivald
Top 10 Reasons to use SVG Graphics!
SVG is the future of the web! These scalable graphics can fit any size, and offer support for interactivity and animation. SEO friendly, and resolution independent! Use SVG to create graphics that look just as beautiful on mobile as desktop and retina displays without the extra effort –Rich Humphreys
Day 2 seminars are designed for you to bring a laptop and follow along. (*Session Topics Subject to Change)
AM Session 9am-Noon (Choose 1)
*InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, CC Libraries, and Bridge: Differences, Similarities and Using them Together -Laurie Ruhlin
*Photoshop Pixels Demystified: Resolution/File Formats for Print and Web -Jori Curry
*Getting More Out of InDesign, Styles, GREP and More -Erica Gamet
*Crucial HTML & CSS for Designers -Rich Humphreys
*Photoshop 3D Magic -Tyrus Goshay
Noon – 1:30pm – Lunch on your Own
PM Session 1:30pam-4:30pm (Choose 1)
*On-Location Photo Shoot and Learning Photoshop Camera RAW (Attendees bring their own cameras and have solid understanding of how their camera operates) -Patty Carroll
*InDesign Tablet Publishing: Publish Online, HTLML5 (in5) and Fixed Layout epub. -Laurie Ruhlin
*Designing for Digital, Creating Graphics for Web, Mobile and using SVG -Rich Humphreys
*Getting Started with InDesign – Erica Gamet
*Working Non-Destructively in Photoshop CC -Jori Curry

See you there? Register for Adobe Days.

4 Simple Personal Branding Strategies + 1 Cool Infographic


A memorable personal brand attracts attention, builds business and connects you to customers who want to be part of the experience you’re creating.

Here are four ways to use personal branding and social media to build your career and grow your business with pictures, connections and updates in your industry.

This cool personal branding infographic is from Placester.

Thanks to MPI CAC for running a version of this article on their blog for meeting professionals. H/T to Hubspot, which is where I spotted this snazzy infographic.

Picture Your Personal Brand

If you’re like most of us, you look different on LinkedIn than you do on Facebook. On LinkedIn, you want to look current, refreshed and likable.

You don’t want to:

–           Appear bored or aloof

–           Use an outdated image

–           Sit in your car with your seat belt on

–           Stand in front of your garage or a house

–           Cut off the person next to you [yes, you can stand alone]

–           Wear black tie, unless you’re an entertainer

–           Be in the dark [lighter backgrounds look better]

–           Pose with your baby or pet [super cute, but too distracting]

–           Post your pet’s pic in place of yours [see above]

–           Wear a swimsuit


I’ve seen all of these. They’re memorable, but not the best for branding. Choose an image that shows you as confident, relaxed and successful.

For more ideas on how to project a professional personal brand image, check out 20 ways to look good when you say cheese.


Connect to Communicate

You are who you relate to.  Do you surround yourself with people that motivate, inspire, and connect you to opportunities?

People you want to relate to include:

–           Prospects at target companies

–           MPI group members

–           Thought leaders

–           Industry leaders

–           Mentors

–           Successful peers

Focus on a top group of 50 people to follow and connect with them on the platforms where you are most active.

LinkedIn is the best for business. Facebook is great for socializing and interacting with groups. Twitter is the place to make a list so you can reply to news. Google Plus is becoming more of a contender and the place use Hangouts as free video conference or webinar tool.


Update to Underscore Branding

To stay in touch with your communities and communicate the value of your personal brand, select topics based on how you can help them solve problems.

Ideas for updates include:

–           Meeting and event industry news

–           Company news, including awards, product launches and new staff

–           Company blog posts

–           Whitepapers

–           Statistics and research

–           Recap reports from events you attend

–           Images from events

Over time, a consistent approach will build a sound, look, and feel that defines your personal brand. Your goal is to be recognized as the leader your community is looking for when they need the products and services you provide.


Marinate Your Personal Branding in Core Values

If you’re a foodie, you know you don’t need to actually taste the food to identify the cuisine. All you have to do is see it or smell it to know what it tastes like. Branding works the same way.

To keep your branding consistently flavorful, marinate it in values. To find out what your values are, make a list of people that you admire. Then, identify the characteristics of each. When you start to see the same characteristics listed over and over again, you’ll get a feel for your personal core values.

Let’s Talk! What’s your biggest question about personal branding?


How Great Brands Define Social ROI #SMWReporter #SMWBerlin

nokia-lumia-1020-smwreporterThis post is one in the #SMWReporter series. Disclosure: Thanks to Nokia for selecting me as one of two U.S. reporters to cover Social Media Week Berlin. Nokia covered all travel and expenses and gave each reporter a Nokia Lumia 1020 41 megapixel camera phone. What a cool trip! While I was there, I had the opportunity to cover intriguing SMW Berlin sessions like this one, How Great Brands Define Social ROI.

How Great Brands Define Social ROI

Hosted by Falcon Social, the “How Great Brands Define Social ROI” session speakers included Roland Fiege, managing parter at Mediabrands Audience Platform; Thane Ryland, head of global social media insights at Nokia; and Armgard Eichhoff, strategic consultant at Bazaarvoice.

Back in 2009, Roland Fiege started academic research to build a social scorecard to measure value around social media campaigns. His company invests client budgets in 360 social media campaigns; clients include Microsoft/Lumia and Visa/Mastercard.

Bazarrvoice measures an authentic voice in the marketplace, through technology. The company pays lots of attention to reviews online; making sure the information is authentic and real, working with around 70,000 brands on 11 million products that reach 400 million shoppers each month. All of this creates a lot of opportunities to work in different ways.

In 2012, Nokia had 100 million social interactions. Today, the company has 40 million global Facebook fans. And, the equivalent of 500 years of Nokia Global video content was viewed on Youtube in 2012. The size of the community makes it a big opportunity to leverage content and care for customers; Nokia is constantly monitoring the social brand. You can read about Nokia’s story, going back over 150 years, here.

Nokia’s approach to social is to listen and engage as a social business. The company is in a challenger mindset, not to outspend the competition, but to listen to the people who value the Nokia brand.

One of the important things to understand is that Nokia doesn’t sell directly to consumers. Having distributors adds another dimension and a challenge.

The company’s been on Facebook since 2008. In 2011, they wondered “how can we make the conversations understandable and digestible?” So, they installed displays in company canteens to let their employees know about the conversations going on in real time about the company around the world.

In 2012, they thought about what they wanted to measure and “how do we build something that can be scaled?” Now, they have a global team working with many markets to make sure that what works is scalable. They’re also looking at how to optimize what they have by using data to forecast opportunities.

How Companies Invest in Social ROI

Imagine a company spending up to 25% of their revenue on advertising. They don’t actually care where the money is spent, but they want a good return on their investment. If Roland can prove that one channel works better than another, then they’ll want to spend more money.

Let’s say the customer’s number one KPI is awareness and trust. For them, all the content is driving the trust parameters. They are rarely successful when they create a lot of buzz. So, don’t come in with fancy social media stuff for clients like these.

The big problem at SMW is people are whining that they need to get more budget, but the only thing that counts in the very end is the money. We have to be sure that the social channels we are responsible for are performing at least as good or better than traditional channels.

Armgard agreed that at the end of the day, it is about money. But, you have to remember who gives you the money: the consumer who cares about the product, wants an experience and is interested in a conversation.

How are you engaging with people already loyal to you?

She says a massive opportunity that companies are missing is engaging with people who are already loyal to you. One UK company asked people to upload pictures of someone they loved and then had people vote on the winners. They created a calendar that raised money for a foundation, engaged new people and got people to be more emotional and closer. Advocacy is an incredible and crucial tactic that brands can use.

Thane says advocacy takes social back to PR and communications where the key measurement is increasing the advocacy around the brand.

Working with advocates, they can now come up with an idea of how many device purchases they can influence in a year. They can understand what reach social may have. The point is you really have to step back and think about internal resources and data you already have and then plug into that larger delivery outcome you’re looking for.

On the influencer and ambassador level, it takes longer to get the measurements, It’s not as easy to measure as “how did the campaign go this week.”

Most organizations are set up differently in terms of who wears the social hat.

Thane says, “Social is sort of the liquid that’s allowing everybody to float across different areas that they couldn’t before.” At the end of the day, the company has a common set of key performance indicators that everybody’s trying to drive towards.

Where to Start Measuring Social ROI

As far as beginning to measure social ROI goes, start with a campaign to give people something to react to. You can build good relationships and get insights on paid ads on Twitter and Facebook.

Roland say ROI depends on the business case and the strategic basis of your social media strategy. Are you there for marketing, for service?

If you’re there to push marketing, we all know what happens to non-customer focused companies – they go away.

Amrgard thinks ROI is a difficult problem for companies. They want to do social, but they don’t have the resources. In terms of going back to real time demands, it’s easier for them to monitor and react as reviews come in.

Social ROI is about tying the value back to the bottom line, which would be a lot easier if we were talking about ecommerce, but not everybody is into ecommerce.

Brands are challenged to move connections through the social funnel from clickers to likers to regulars.

To find out how to move people along the funnel and measure ROI, start with interviews to identify the greatest pain because we can measure that and start putting numbers on that. And, we can compare traditional media to social and put numbers around that as well.

Where can you focus your efforts in getting concrete ROI?

The moderator observed, “There’s not a lot of customer service people at Social Media Week. That’s a big problem. This customer service event is now in the open, it’s in an auditorium and everybody’s watching.”

Start small, be specific and come together on some thing you feel like isn’t perfect, but is good enough. The landscape for KPI’s is constantly changing across the globe. For example, where does Snapchat fit in?

Only five people in the session’s audience were measuring social ROI. How about you?

Be careful of analysis and paralysis, Armgard cautions. Because once you figure out the technology, it’s moved on. So test, there’s often a lot of surprising data that comes out.

Setting Social ROI Standards: Cats and Dog or Numbers?

Thane mentioned one of the takeaways from SMW London. On the one hand, you can ask: What is the social ROI of your cat or your dog or your family? On the other hand, ROI means measuring everything, but the downside/danger is that you can’t be creative if all you’re focusing on is numbers.

How about you – are your more analytical or more creative?

Image: Penguin in a Pond at the Berlin Zoo by Barbara Rozgonyi, taken with the Nokia Lumia 1020

How Great Brands Define Social ROI Video

Teens on LinkedIn #BacktoSchool


For the first time ever, LinkedIn is inviting high school freshmen, age 14 and up, now called “pre-university students” to add a “professional” profile. Thanks to WDCB for asking me to share my thoughts about Teen Profiles on LinkedIn. Here’s the interview.

Professional Network Allows Teen Users

When you want to catch up with family and friends you can turn to Facebook, but when professionals want to network online they’ve relied on LinkedIn. Last week LinkedIn announced it will lower the minimum age to create an account and profile on the site. WDCB’s Brian O’Keefe spoke with Glen Ellyn based social media expert Barbara Rozgonyi about the changes at LinkedIn.

Have a pre-university student in the house? Then, you’ll want to know more about privacy settings. So, here you go . . .

Updates to LinkedIn Terms of Service

Source: LinkedIn Blog

As we make LinkedIn available to pre-university students, we are taking steps to safeguard the experience of LinkedIn members under the age of 18, so we are implementing the following measures:

LinkedIn members who are minors will have different default settings to limit publicly viewable profile information and unwanted communications
Special routing for Customer Support tickets initiated by members under 18
We have added a link to our Safety Center and Family Center so that all members can easily find and access information on how to safely use LinkedIn
The minimum age for LinkedIn members will vary by country; in the United States it is 14. In deciding these ages, we worked to ensure that all were in line with existing regulations in each country.

Here’s the country and age breakdown:

14 years old: United States, Canada, Germany, Spain, Australia and South Korea
16 years old: Netherlands
18 years old: China
13 years old: All other countries

LinkedIn Privacy Settings for Teens are Different than for Adults

Source and more information

  • Teens’ birth year will be hidden. After they turn 18, they will be given the  option to display that information.
  • Teens’ profiles will automatically be prevented from  appearing in public search engines such as Google and Bing.
  • Teens’ Profile photo will only be visible only to their “1st-degree” connections (people they connect with directly).
  • Teens’ professional headline won’t be shown, to protect their privacy in search results.
  • Teens’ profile will default to first name, last name initial, and general region, instead of their full name and city for all languages using Latin script — e.g., English, French, Dutch, etc.)
  • Teens will not receive promotional or informational “InMail messages” from LinkedIn’s marketing and hiring partners.
  • Teens; data will not be shared with 3rd-party applications, even if they :choose to install 3rd-party applications.
  • Teens won’t see ads from LinkedIn when looking at other websites.
  • LinkedIn says that it won’t collect information about teens when they are looking at other websites that partner with LinkedIn.

Looking for someone to interview or speak about LinkedIn and teens? I’d love to talk to you!

Long-Term Relationships for Bloggers and Brands BlogHer13


Bloggers and brands work so well together – especially when there’s a long-term relationship. Tips and ideas on how to make it happen. This is one is a series of BlogHer13 posts.

Many of my blogger friends are active brand ambassadors with contracts that range from writing a few posts to traveling around the world to being on an advisory board.

In this session, we talked about how to get paid to represent a brand. One of my favorite assignments was being a member of Sears Blue Blogger Crew at CES. I got paid to cover the show!

Long-Term Relationships for Bloggers and Brands BlogHer13

Because I’m interested in representing and working with more brands, I thought this session would be a good fit for me – and my readers. Here’s what I learned. For a complete long-term relationships for bloggers and brands session transcript, visit the BlogHer site.

Thanks to these speakers for sharing their tips and insights:

Kristin Hylek @khylek6 McDonald’s PR team, Leah Ingram,  blogger at; Stephanie Hua, blogger at; and Missy Maher, director of modern family foresight at Edelman. 

Get on TV – NOW

Start pitching yourself to local TV shows as an expert.

Send stations a best of TV highlight reel that shows your appearances. Use a wipe edit to go from scene to scene.

Know Your Message Points

Look in your local market for lifestyle morning shows and newscasts with lifestyle oriented segments. Send new ideas every month. Build relationships with the TV station. Work with PR people who are good at coming up with story ideas and can help you build your platform.

When you’re working with the brand, think about where you could pitch a product-oriented segment. Find a way to create segments that are interesting. These ideas will also give you content and help you build your portfolio.

Pitch local magazines to sharpen your positioning as a local expert.

[I would also add local newspapers. On site like Patch, you can post an article with your viewpoint that positions you as an expert. You may be selected to be featured on the main page. You can also pitch yourself as a columnist. Everyone loves reading an answers column and they’re easy to write. I used to write the Sales Exchange column for a statewide association.]

How will brands find you? You’ll need a long-term strategy that mixes SEO, social media and PR.

On your blog,  put up a work with me page where you are personal, but professional. You want to highlight everything you do. If you’re a photographer, link to your portfolio on 500px or the site you use.

It all comes down to celebrating what you do. 

Many brands want to work with regular people regardless of size, color or age. As long as you make yourself relevant, and you know how to present yourself professionally, you can be attractive to brands.

How do I get on “The List?”

Everybody wants to know the answer to this question. Reach out to brands and agencies. They are always there and ready to care. A brand wants to work with someone who’s similar to them. They also look for reach and influence. Big brands look for big numbers.

If you’d like to work with a brand, start commenting and contributing on their Facebook page.

Do some homework and see what other people are doing and see if you can match it. If you’re just getting started, you may want to give a little more and work with a smaller brand.

Create an infographic with a media kit where you can put testimonials and quotes from your readers.

Keep building yourself and putting yourself out there. Build influence and reach to be attractive.

Let’s Talk More!

Do you work with brands – or bloggers? What’s your biggest question about how to take the relationship from one event to a long-term relationship?