Relationships Drive Business

Strengthening Customer Engagement to Propel Your Business

Want to go to a Big Break Party July 6, 2011

Distinctive Gardens has planned a big blowout party to tell their local community about being chosen as a American Express OPEN Facebook Big Break finalist.

 

Here’s the community invite:

Big Break Big Bash Invite

 

Lisa and Bud are having a band, booze and buffet to welcome their guests and launch the fun.  This Prezi is all they have seen so far.

 

I SO wish I could be there. Philly is just too darn far from Dixon, IL. What do you think their friends will say?

 

UPDATE, July 7 2011

Here’s coverage from their big party. The pavilion at the garden center is gorgeous. It looks like Bud is standing on a table, LOL.

 

Advertisements
 

Distinctive Gardens’ Facebook Big Break from American Express OPEN July 5, 2011

The big city camera crew is freaked out by the grain bin behind them.

 

If you follow SocialPie at all, by now you probably know an my buddy Lisa and her hubby, Bud, are finalists in AmExOpen’s Big Break for Small Business contest. Big Break’s  final winners (there will be 5 of them) are determined by online voting.  (You can watch their video here and vote for them to win!)

 

The garden center is owned by Lisa’s husband Bud and Jim Brown, in tiny Dixon, IL. Lisa and I have been friends forever. We met in 4th grade at John Glenn Elementary School in Donahue, Iowa.  Donahue is super-tiny town of 298.

 

Lisa now lives about 90 minutes from Donahue in Dixon, IL; and I’m outside of Philadelphia.  We reconnected at our class reunion and keep in touch through Facebook.  Mostly through posts on SocialPie’s page, and Facebook Messages.

 

The adventure that Big Break has brought to Distinctive Gardens has been great. It’s been fun to watch from behind the scene’s with her going through the process, watching them stretch their business in the process. And not surprisingly, Dixon, Il is the tiniest of all the finalists hometowns.

 

Today’s post captures the timeline of how Distinctive Gardens came to be finalists for AmEx Open’s Big Break.

 

April 21 ~ “SocialPie” facebook page posts a link to the Big Break competition. Lisa saw the post.

 

It all started with a SocialPie Facebook post.

April 23 ~ Distinctive Gardens enters the first phase of competition with a written submission answering three questions:

1.Tell us about your business. What makes you excited to come to work every day?

2. How do you envision Facebook impacting your business?

3. How could a Big Break help your business and your customers?

May 25 ~ A call comes informing Distinctive Gardens is a top 40 semi-finalist from over 11,000 entries across the country. Later that night a phone interview is conducted. Both the written and oral submissions then go to a panel of three judges who decide the top 10.

Lisa found out she was a finalist!

June 2 ~ A call comes from Digitas in NYC, informing Distinctive Gardens they are one of the top 10 finalists.

June 10 ~ The Big Break camera crew of  from Boston, NYC, LA, and Chicago converge on Distinctive Gardens and spend an entire day shooting and interviewing to make a 90 second video for the competition. (Vote HERE 🙂  The crew:  Jon,Jerry, Kristyna, Casey and Leif parachute (not really)  into on Dixon IL and eat mounds of homemade cookies.

July 5 ~ Facebook and American Express OPEN launch public voting on the top 10 videos to determine the top 5 winners.

 

The Prize:  American Express Open has teamed up with Facebook to give 5 small businesses a Facebook business makeover and $25,000 to grow their business. Wish Lisa luck, and go vote (and tell your friends, too) for Distinctive Gardens!

 

 

American Express Open’s Facebook Big Break

Filed under: Case Study,Successes — Carla Bobka @ 2:14 am
Tags: , , , , ,

Vote for Distinctive Gardens, click on the image to get to the voting.

 

American Express has teamed up with Facebook to give 5 small businesses a Facebook business makeover and $20,000 to grow their business.


One of SocialPie’s fans, Distinctive Gardens, is a finalist!


Distinctive Gardens is one of the top 10 finalist from more than 11,000 entries. Hurray!!


Final winners are determined by you through online voting, starting right now. Watch the videos, and vote for Distinctive Gardens. Please share with your friends on Facebook, Twitter and over the fence to spread the word.


Over the next couple weeks watch for more posts about Lisa and Bud’s Big Break story. It’s been a hoot to watch them go from entrant to finalist.  FYI- Distinctive Gardens is not a SocialPie client, just a fan that I’m thrilled to see having a big adventure. Lisa and I have been friends since 4th grade, and I’m helping spread the word about them.  Vote here.

 

 

A Big Surprise in Dixon IL July 4, 2011

Filed under: Case Study,Successes — Carla Bobka @ 3:29 pm
Tags: , , , , ,
 

 

One Wild Year April 29, 2011

 

Tomorrow, April 30, 2011, is SocialPie’s anniversary. Thanks to all of you for coming along for the ride.

Lots has happened in the last year. Not just with SocialPie, but in every part of life. Here’s a look at handful of milestones:

1. I’ve written 52 newsletters and 142 blog posts.
2. I’ve built 29 Facebook Pages, given 8 speeches and tweeted a bazillion times.
3. SocialPie was hired by real customers to write social media strategies, and I love doing it.
4. I became a Great Aunt.
5. My husband got a job after 18 months of unemployment. He loves it, despite the commute.
6. Our dear friends,Jay and Doreen celebrated their 20st Anniversary. The pic above is from the surprise party we threw them.

Share your story. What happened to you in the last 12 months?

 

 

 

Two Billion is an Intimate Affair

The Service

 

Today the world attended a wedding. All of us together. It was magical.

And there were plenty of obstacles. Security was the tightest in history. The church smaller than it need be. The crowd as big as you can imagine. And the engagement was a mere 5 months. Oh, and the budget, it was small. OK, small-ish. William and Catherine had requested a restrained affair, even requesting charitable contributions in lieu of gifts. Many of the guests arrived at the Palace in mini-buses. That’s budget constraint. (for royalty.)

And yet the 2 billion guest who didn’t get invitations had their most intimate access ever.  We could watch on close to 100 TV channels, or on live streaming video over the Internet. We listened on satellite radio while we drove to work. Read it in the newspaper on our iPad while we were on the treadmill. We could hear the hymns before the ceremony by downloading the music. And there were at least three official websites.
Yes, I watched. I watched the whole thing. I had it on two TVs and on Twitter. My girlfriend was in London Thursday at 5:00 pm for a meeting. She bought gifts for the kids at The Queen’s Shop in Buckingham Palace 16 hours before the ceremony. And got us flags from the stand at Westminster Abbey.  I talked about it with my friends on Facebook. I downloaded the Official Wedding Program. And the kid at our evening viewing party recorded a video for the bride and groom. It was a spectacular day. We did everything but buy plane tickets and new outfits.
None of this was possible 4 years ago. The royal team did an amazing job using the media available to give us access to so much. They deserve one heck of an after party. And then there was the social part. That was extraordinary.

Here are 6 ways social platforms were used in completely new ways:

  1. The Royal Channel on YouTube did more than featured background videos and highlights of the ceremony. The team did something to really leverage YouTube’s social element. They let us upload our well-wishes to the bride and groom. It was a guest book with videos instead of signatures. No need to be present to leave your stamp. Tell me that won’t become a HUGE wedding trend.
  2. Flicker The Monarchy has a Flicker photo stream.
  3. Twitter – Multiple tweet streams were produced by the monarchy. @ClarenceHouse @BritishMonarchy were tweeting up a storm. Not to mention all the news channels and anchors tweeting and the fashion police and all of us watching.
  4. Apps iPhone apps, iPad apps both for history, pictures, relationships of the family members. And design your own dress apps. And games. Yes, even games like this one where the bride is racing to the church on time dodging horses and by-standers. There are so many I can’t even begin to link to them all.
  5. Facebook has a  Page, The Wedding Book, for the couple created by fans. The Page has 151,670 fans of it’s own. That’s in additon to the wedding’s official page, The British Monarchy.
  6. Music – Want the Royal Album, download it from iTunes.

I hope the social media team takes a vacation and then comes to a conference to speak. I’d love to hear how they pulled it all together, how big the staff was and what they’d do differently if they could.

 

I know there are sites I missed. What did you find?

 

Party Planning March 23, 2011

Filed under: Ideas,Life in General,Successes — Carla Bobka @ 11:55 pm
Tags: , ,

SocialPie is approaching our 1st Anniversary.

How should we celebrate?