Top 6 Takeaways from SMBME 65 – Putting Your Business on the Map with Google

Thank you everyone for joining us for our 65th Social Media Breakfast. This month we had Jennifer McDonald of TideSmart Global and Joel Bolton from Maine Virtual Tours come and talk to us all about the importance of having your business listed with Google.

Here are my top 6 takeaways from the morning:

  1. We use our smartphones for everything (and so do your customers) – I loved how Jennifer kept saying our phones were intimate devices. I had never heard that but it sure does make sense. We care about them, we bring them everywhere, we care what they look like, we lock them for privacy, we have apps to track them if we lose them and, according to her data, we check them over 150 times A DAY! Eek! We use our phones to search, to look for things locally, to look for deals, to see reviews of products, and to share our experience with our products after we buy them. They are a part of the entire buying cycle.
  2. Simple messaging, be authentic, provide value – Jennifer listed these as the steps needed to succeed in a digital marketing world and I cannot agree more. The tune hasn’t changed but the tools have. Many of us get too wrapped up in what we can do, what we could do and saying as much as we can. Something easy, real and helpful will win every time.
  3. Go to to see how your business is doing with local search and get next steps to optimize your business profile. I did a quick check for my job and I have some work to do! If you need help, more information or have a unique issue, you should contact Joel to help you work through it.
  4. Mike Blumenthal is your man for the nitty gritty on Local Search – Joel directed us to Mike Blumenthal for more information about the ever changing world of local search. I took a peek at his blog already and can’t wait to get more in there and look for some complicated questions I have.
  5. Google+ is reaching the end… it seems. Alas, they tried, and reworked, and reworked some more but… it looks like G+ is winding down. Joel showed us some funny videos (one is below). Our local tweeps also shared some recent G+ articles here and here.
  6. Marcy’s Diner was NOT the most linked to story from Facebook to the PPH site last month – I don’t even know how that is possible?!? The Marcy’s Diner story that blew up the local interwebs was overshadowed by the man who threw a party in Baxter State Park. Weird! Thank you to our sponsors and friends from the Portland Press Herald for joining us again and for showing us that cool tool!

Here is a link to Joel’s full presentation. So much good information in here.

Here is a link to Jennifer’s full presentation too. Some great stats to share with your company or clients!

See you next month!

Posted in Google+, Marketing, Portland, Recap, Social Media | 1 Comment

The GIFs You Missed At Our SMBME With Ann Handley

If you missed our 60th Social Media Breakfast today, you missed a good one. We were so lucky to have Ann Handley present and we were the sunset of her book tour.

If you DID come to the breakfast this morning, you STILL missed something… her awesome GIFs that didn’t play on my laptop (oops). So I thought I would make sure those got the love they deserve here.

So here are the GIFs you missed, whether you were at SMBME today or not. Enjoy :)

First, the MIND-BLOWING ‘What the what?!’


Then, the magical place where we all created unique content that truly shows empathy.
‘I want to go there’


And the final GIF we missed… a toast to Ann, all of you who attended this morning, all of you reading this, all of our sponsors and to everyone who helps make each Social Media Breakfast Maine happen. Cheers! Thank you!


So excited to have @annhandley in the #smbme house this morning. #content #60th

A photo posted by Amanda O'Brien (@amandamaeobrien) on

Posted in Fun, Recap | Leave a comment

Your Business Needs an Army

spose-concertTomorrow I am speaking at MPRC about Juggling Social Media. I can’t help but think of the best PR analogy I think I ever heard was that PR is like a bank account, you need to keep putting in deposits, before you can make a withdrawal. I think a lot of businesses go about this backwards.

Think about it… Public Relations should be about telling everyone how great and helpful you are. How your product or service helps people and your community. Then, heaven forbid, if something were to go wrong, you have goodwill among your community.

We think PR and social media are about telling people what we need (come to my event, shop at my store, download my widget), but it needs to be about what our fans and community needs.

Which brings me to Spose…

I am not going to lie and say I wasn’t surprised last year when I was told I was on a social media panel with Spose, the white rapper from Maine. We talked about social media and building your brand. Spose not only has a brand, but he has an ARMY of passionate fans.


That Mr. Spose is one smart cookie and he gained another member of his ‘army’ that day… this girl. Not only is Ryan, aka Spose, good at his craft, he is an excellent marketer. He gives and gives and gives to his fans and community. He includes his army in his social media posts, thanks them regularly, includes them in his videos, reshares their content and treats them like a family. They are loyal, they share his message for him, they buy his albums, some even get tattoos sharing their admiration for the rapper.

Yesterday while Spose was on tour, his tour bus was robbed. They stole his equipment, his creative work and pissed him off (WJBQ has a quick recap with more links about the event).

What comes next is absolutely amazing, Spose’s ‘army’ set up a GoFundMe account and at the time of the post, they have raised almost $14,000 in less than a day to help him get back some of his equipment so he can continue his work and his tour. If you look at the donations, many are just $10-$20 donations.

“I was there at that show that night man…You killed it, and you treated every fan like a god. You didn’t deserve this brother…” – Cody with a donation of $10

No, the money won’t bring back the personal items and music he lost but the support from his fans is undeniable and hopefully he can pick back up and get back to doing what he does best.

So as we carry on with our social media strategies and editorial calendars and press releases… let’s think about how our businesses can grow an army, not fans or followers or link backs, or search rankings. Have an ‘army’ and I promise, the rest will follow.

Photo credit: Spose Facebook

Posted in Case Studies, Maine, Social Media Tips, Upcoming Breakfasts | Leave a comment

Need an Inspirational Kick in the Pants? Listen to DJ and John

Living Your Passion Podcast with John Lee DumasI think all of us could use a good inspirational kick in the pants as we are coming into our hunker down months.
I have started getting into listening to more podcasts. Some on topics I like, some from people I like and SOME are BOTH!

I have been listening to my friend DJ Waldow’s new(ish) podcast, Living Your Passion. He has had some really interesting guests on there and how can you not be inspired by listening to people who are so inspired?!?

This week’s guest was especially near and dear to my heart… our own John Lee Dumas. Not that John is OURS but he is from Maine, he has been a SMBME speaker and we have loved watching his success.

Added bonus, my heart strings were tugged when the two of them gave me some mad props in the show intro. Always nice to hear people like you and what you do.

So, have a listen… get inspired… be proud of our Mainers taking over the world!

Posted in Maine, Marketing, Portland, Uncategorized | Leave a comment