Visualizing the world we want

I posted a photo on Pinterest of a salad I made. The photo of the salad lied to my tastebuds. Nobody on Pinterest cared. It was too pretty.

The salad was visually stunning. The caption read: “Strawberries (substituting for a bad watermelon), Feta, red onion, toasted almonds on a bed of crunchy Romaine.”

Sue's beautiful salad that tasted bad

The salad was beautiful to look at, but sucked when I ate it. That did not stop Pinterest followers from re-pinning it. On Pinterest, beauty trumps truth.

Pinterest is not about foodies and fashionistas. Pinterest is really about social-streaming a message visually. The human brain is wired to receive 90 percent of all messages visually first. We believe what we see. That’s why my bad salad is still popular. Feta and strawberries do not agree on the tongue, but they agree on the eyeballs.

I’ve spent the past week on Pinterest to see how easily family, clients, friends and strangers are manipulated by its beautiful pictures.

A view of Mt. Rainier from Puyallup River.

Pinterest allows users to create board themes with visual proof points uploaded by users like you and me. It’s the ultimate “love it or hate it” message board. If you love tattoos, horses, macaroni, Obama, Paris, French-country flowers and savvy quotes, Pinterest allows you to define your brand, style and life philosophy in a visually compelling palette of images and photos organized by the boards. You can re-pin images from followers and friends or upload your own and define a new trend. It’s fun, easy and addictive.

In one afternoon, I created a spectrum of images that define my business, my life, the life I don’t have and want, and the life I fight for.

Cannon Beach

High notes:

1. All pictures of my two German Shepherds taken by my cousin MollyDillphotography.com are getting re-pinned by the hour.

2. None of my client’s political opposition has caught on to this trend. This is short-lived because they are reading this blog.

3. I also discovered through my uploads that I’m not the only person who loves whales, German Shepherds, Obama, Cannon Beach, Absolutely Fabulous and earthy, weather-beaten housewares.

Mut and Brinx running on the beach.

Pinterest requires you to be connected to Facebook and conversely allows you to “like” your pins to Facebook to broaden your reach. It’s where the poster boards of witty quotes and vibrant photos on Facebook are now born.

I am mostly amazed at how much the foodies dominate the stream. If you were born on another planet, you’d think we all are starving for pretty food.

People like me are coming to Pinterest with bigger motives and agendas. We are plotting and planning to fill your brain with our ideas and our vision for the world. Consider this visual plug for my friend Gael Tarleton, a standout Democratic candidate for state representative in the 36th Legislative District.

Learn more about Democrat Gael Tarleton at voteforgael.org

My vision for the world has lots of critters, good food and pocket reviews of my favorite movies, TV shows and preferred political candidates. It also includes signage and images for a better world that can be realized through progressive engagement, voting and thinking.

Pinterest is destined to become deeper and more philosophical as more people catch on to its power. Pinterest will compel all of us to visualize the world we want with the images in our brains or on Pinterest. I can visualize my children’s future on Pinterest. And that makes me happy.

 

My kids at Yellow Stone parÂ

Facebook less. Book more face. Go have lunch!

Facebook less and book more face and your social media marketing will flourish

Connecting with people on a personal level is direct marketing at its basic and best. And it makes your work life happier and more productive. If you have 500 connections on Linked-In, but only have lunch with targeted peers and clients twice a month, put the smart phone down and find somebody to take to lunch.

Meeting with people in person is the most powerful and effective strategy in marketing and media relations. There’s simply no substitute for your face, your laughter and your personal anecdotes over lunch. Everybody loves a story and a human being behind the story. And everybody prefers to meet with people they already know because it’s less awkward. When you genuinely know the people you connect with on social media, it also reduces tension when you have to reach out to clients, peers and allies in tough times. And you discover ways to help each other.

So in order to diminish your awkward quotient, you must meet with more people more often. If you feel intimidated by the intimacy of a one-on-one lunch, invite somebody to go with you. Lunching in threes eases the performance pressure some people feel when presented with a face-to-face meeting. Know who you are and address it head on.

And if you’re concerned about running up a big lunch bill, then meet people for coffee or a walk. Lots of people, especially in the Northwest, love the idea of going for a mid-afternoon walk to break up their sedentary time in the office. You both create a shared experience while improving your health.

I make it my business to ensure my clients, peers and professional allies know me as a human being first. This builds trust and confidence in our relationship, especially when faced with a difficult situation that may put us at odds. Building this kind of trust can turn a crisis situation into a bold opportunity.

My No. 1 recommendation for building market share, referrals, allies and friendly media is to develop a direct outreach plan for the year. And this includes meeting with allies and adversaries if you want to dominate your professional universe. Ask yourself this question: How often do I have lunch or coffee with a client or professional peer each week? If you have lunch or coffee just once a day, five days week with one targeted client or peer, you are potentially generating 20 “referral ambassadors” a month. Clearly, with whom you choose to meet can dramatically increase that referral number if you are smart about it. Meeting with people who are savvy, high-traffic networkers is key. You should make clients and prospective clients your first priority. Adversaries and problem partners are second. Vendors and business partners are third.

People who know their friends and enemies simply get more things done for their clients. They see bridges, not walls. They build a strong social media network that brings real value to their business. And they book more face.