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Social Media and the Rise of Personal Branding

What do you want to be known for?

By Patty Swisher Posted on May 14, 2014

If anyone knows what personal branding is, my guess is that architects do. In fact, they could have or should have coined the phrase. Frank Lloyd Wright, Frank Gehry, and Zaha Hadid are great examples of architects whose name recognition and perhaps personal brands have pre-dated the rise of popularity of the very idea, and certainly pre-date the use of social media to promote their reputations. Like other nostalgic notions that one longs for as one ages, gone are the days of heroic reputation built in trade magazines and print ads. Today, social media enables personal branding and “reputation management” at light speed. What is it? So what is personal branding? According to Forbes.com, “Your personal brand is all about...

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A Social Media Mantra

A little 'Om' to go with the 'how' and the 'why'

By Patty Swisher Posted on March 12, 2014

Call it an epiphany, a moment of clarity, a stroke of brilliance, or just dumb luck. One afternoon I responded to an inquiry via LinkedIn on my thoughts on social media as a business-to-business tool. It was later published in the Pittsburgh Business Times, and it has since become my mantra. Here was my response: 1. Social Media is SOCIAL. It is an extension of your professional network. It is another opportunity to interact with clients and prospects. Keep in mind you must be PRESENT in order to be social, PARTICIPATE.  2. Content is king. Provide content that your contacts will value that ties directly to your business offering… but do not SELL. Ongoing, fresh content gives your audience a...

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Run and Gun…

Are you ready to create your own videos?

By Patty Swisher Posted on November 19, 2013

Are you in a situation that’s ripe for shooting video, but there’s no time for preparation or pause? Do you want to capture real-time quality content, but there’s no time to set up lights, diffusion panels, scrims, and reflectors – let alone hire a professional videographer, write a script, and pay for editing and sound engineering? Welcome to the world of “run and gun” video production; it’s about capturing real-time quality content with no crew, no time, and no (or little) preparation. I talked with Lori Miller, Marketing Leader and Executive Coach at Perkins Eastman, about her first steps into video production. Q: What led Perkins Eastman to create its first set of videos? A: The senior living practice group had...

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So You Have a Twitter Account… Now What?

Navigating this new tool

By Patty Swisher Posted on September 11, 2013

In my first article, I shared the three easy steps to get started with Twitter. Have you followed the steps and signed up? How’s it going?  It has been said that your Twitter account is only as good as your Twitter news feed. Are you following at least 100 people, companies, business publications? These are the sources of information you will receive via Twitter. How useful that information is depends upon whom you select to follow. If you are still a little overwhelmed, here are a few tips to help you get more out of Twitter.  Download Hootsuite. Hootsuite is a free app with a paid upgrade., can be found at www.hootsuite.com, and I am a huge fan! Hootsuite is more than...

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#ReadySetGo

3 easy steps to get started with Twitter

By Patty Swisher Posted on July 10, 2013

Twitter. Tweet. Hashtag. Retweet. What is all this gibberish about the social media platform Twitter? Twitter is a microblogging service created in 2006 and currently has over 500 million registered users generating over 340 million tweets per day – and there are new people joining every day. Today, Twitter has become an excellent source for networking with business contacts, connecting at conferences or events, making new friends, following celebs and TV shows, and learning about breaking news from sporting events to natural disasters as they occur. According to the Twitter Help Center, “the real magic lies in absorbing real-time information that matters to you.” First, a little about vocabulary for Twitter. A tweet is a message that is 140 characters...

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Incorporating Keywords in Your LinkedIn Profile

Taking action to improve your brand

By Patty Swisher Posted on May 21, 2013

The last article was a general introduction about the importance of keywords, and if you had an opportunity to attend the panel presentation on social media at Build Pittsburgh in April, you may have a better understanding of the value and usefulness of keywords. Keywords are those three to five words that define who you are and how you want your clients to know you. Are you familiar with the classic marketing book, The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding, by Al Ries  and Laura Ries? Law Number 5 says to “own a word”, with examples such as Volvo owning “safety,” or FedEx owning “overnight.” During the seminar, we talked about keywords in relation to LinkedIn profiles. I also recently read...

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Keywords for Success

A Key Strategy

By Patty Swisher Posted on April 11, 2013

I have written here a lot about social media strategy. Comments and feedback have suggested that there are not a lot of actionable items. First, I think it is important to start with strategy before jumping into tactics. Understanding the strategy, the “WHY” you want to do something, leads to better results – the how, where, when, what.  Clearly, I’m not an architect, but you wouldn’t start building a new building and then work out the details of the design of the foundation, would you?  (…that’s for a different section of this publication – not my area of expertise!) This is one more strategy-related article. I promise tactics are coming, soon. Whether it’s social media, website, or email marketing, marketing...

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TAPping into Social Media in Architecture

An Interview Brian Skripac, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP BD + C

By Patty Swisher Posted on March 19, 2013

I recently met Brian Skripac, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP BD + C, at the Master Builders Association/AIA Lunch and Learn on Social Media and didn’t want to miss the opportunity to get his take on social media in our industry. Brian, what is your title and role at Astorino? My title at Astorino is the Director of Digital Practice. I’m responsible for providing firm-wide leadership in defining BIM workflows that integrate across all areas of the firm’s design processes, while defining the future vision for digital design technologies within the organization. You recently gave a presentation on “Social Media in Architecture, Broadening the Perspective in Architecture Practice.” What was the focus of your presentation? My presentation was titled Social Media...

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Resolutions – Lose 10 Pounds, Write 10 Posts

Four steps to achieving goals

By Patty Swisher Posted on February 12, 2013

Anyone that has been on a diet at any point in their life will realize that losing 10 pounds for one person can be JUST as difficult as writing 10 blog posts for another.  What do you want to achieve? Have you considered a professional services blog as part of your 2013 resolutions? As you develop your social media strategy, think about this 4 step approach created by Forrester Research: Step 1: People. Who is your audience? What information do they want? What social media sites do they use? Will writing for other architects help you build your business? While it is important to write about something that you are passionate about, blogging for professional services should have a business...

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Resolutions – Is it Time for a Social Media Strategy?

Setting and achieving simple goals

By Patty Swisher Posted on January 23, 2013

It’s the New Year, it’s that time that rolls around every 12 months or so and has us thinking about goals, objectives, plans, and adjusting our course. Does your plan include social media? If so, it might be a perfect time to think about creating a social media strategy.   Here are my take-a-ways for establishing a social strategy: First, you must decide: What do you want to achieve?  Why? Some of the reasons you might use social media include networking, collaboration, recruiting, or thought leadership. It is recommended that your social media strategy be tied to your overall marketing and business goals and objectives. Social media is one tool in your marketing communications tool box and should be part...

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