How to Rock a Presentation!



15 tips on How to Rock a Presentation courtesy Jeff Sieh, Peg Fitzpatrick and Rebekah Radice via Blab 6 May 2016 AEST
Blab May 6 2016
1.  Start with a joke or light hearted banter to engage your audience in the first two minutes.  This will capture your audience and calm your nerves.
2. Practise all your material well beforehand. Know your topic and what you are there to share.
3. Rebekah Radice records her presentations on her iPhone and listens to them fully to tweak any alterations that need to be made well in advance. Her presentations are made up to a month ahead and only small changes made closer to the time.
4. Talk it out loud to yourself in the mirror so that you can see what hand gestures you are making (watch out!)  :) or faces you might be pulling…  ‘sometimes I feel like an Italian – nail that hand down’! says Rebekah.
5.Prepare, Prepare, Prepare. Peg Fitzpatrick agrees with Rebekah that is the best way to create a successful presentation.
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6. Know your stage.  You will present differently according to the size of your setting.  Your energy has to reach the back of the room, whether that is an auditorium or a small intimate space.
7.Match your energy to the size of the room advises Jeff Sieh.
8.Make sure you know how to use the tech.  Are you bringing your own laptop?  How does the clicker work?  There is more than one variety.  Make sure you are comfortable with your equipment.
9. Even with the best preparation, tech can fail and slides you have created for your presentation might not be available on the day because of technical issues.  Make sure you know your material thoroughly so you can still be comfortable with your ‘story’ if this happens.
10.  Tell a story in your presentation and one that is appropriate for your audience.  If you are re-using material be sure that is tweaked for the people who are listening on that day.
11. People are coming to see YOU. Your slides should be an extension of everything you are talking about.
12. Use text on your slides when you are ‘mentioning a resource or hard facts‘ advises Peg, so people can refer to it if they missed something you just said. Or if you want to emphasise a particular point or piece of information.
13.Wear suitable clothing that makes you feel good. Get your hair done, present yourself well. The better you feel, the better you will come across.
Women need to consider where the microphone pack will go as often you have to attach it in front of your audience.  Clothes with a pocket are helpful.  Be ware of wearing a skirt or dress if your audience is below you – watch the length!
14. Re-watch your presentations/live  video like Jeff Sieh does.  He checks out the footage however uncomfortable that might make him feel. This way you can learn what crutches to cut out in future like too many ‘um’s’ and ‘ah’s’ and see where to improve.
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15. ‘Nerves can be good as they give you extra energy’ and Jeff advises taking that negative energy and harnessing it to turn it into a positive.  Peg takes a sip of water if she feels herself talking too fast and everyone suggested taking a breath as a good thing! Breathing is always useful!
Practise, Preparation and Knowledge of your material. 
Do what it takes to make you ‘feel’ confident.
Check your Tech. 
Turn your nerves into Positive Energy and remember even seasoned Professionals can struggle.  
Fonz apparently threw up before every performance and went on to give a stellar show.
For more information on How to Rock a Presentation visit Jeff Sieh’s site
ps. if you are a guy and don’t want to get your hair ‘done’ rocking a beard might help🙂


Harnessing the chaos


, ,

Lulu B logo

“If I lasso the moon for Mary, will it make my #social stand still?”


It has been a crazy couple of weeks! And the wild horse, that is the internet and it’s offspring ‘social media’ is as tricky for a cowboy or cowgirl to lasso as the moon – but ‘it’s a wonderful life’ to play in.


And before I get onto a round up of my latest gleanings in this overwhelming  and beautiful world of ‘social’ here is one quick thought from me for 2016.

CISCO predicts that by 2017, 70% of internet traffic will be via video but I think it may get there even quicker.

It makes perfect sense, as there is simply too much information to allow for reading everything you come across in the day.

Images, infographics and video and live streaming get information over quickly and agreeably. Watch this Blab on digital trends with Brian Fanzo and see what I mean.

And you know immediately, I’m writing this around christmas time because of the whacky christmas jumper gif.

Video is just images on fast forward…


Facebook may have challengers with other live-streaming platforms grabbing headlines at the moment, but it’s 360 degree video facility and access to billions of users will make it a mainstream option and perhaps much more quickly than has been anticipated.

I think market forces will drive this.

The next step is video, where you digitally step into real places filmed by real cameras, says a recent article.

That’s still some way away, but it’s where Zuckerberg is looking.

“We’re starting to see real video merge with virtual reality and augmented reality,” Zuckerberg said.

Currently, Google Glass  and the like are aimed mainly at the gaming audience. Headsets are expensive.

I don’t game BUT I would love the 3d experience right now please, without it costing me a fortune.

Here is a brilliant initiative helping unlock kids with autism using Google Glass. ( – can you just imagine the possibilities?


We build brain science-driven software to transform
wearables like Google Glass™ into neuro-assistive devices for autism.



Many of us travel extensively now. I for one, am an ex-pat living in Australia.

Would I love to be at a christmas lunch with my family via virtual reality in the UK? You bet I would!



Maybe Santa’s sleigh can magically transport you Louise?


A birthday party, a wedding of a much loved friend, that you really couldn’t justify thousands of dollars and weeks off work for?  Of course you would want to be there, or next best, feel as if you were there!

Or maybe, you just want to be there to read a story to your kids if you can’t be home for their bedtime.

I won’t inflict you with a sad photo of a child here, we’ve probably all been there as either a child or a parent.  Okay, just a small one.

Oscar and Bentley - where were you!!

WHERE were you?




I can be heckled anywhere I live in the world 

said ex CEO of Twitter in a Bloomberg Business interview recently when asked about his future.

Maybe, he has a version of Twitter up his sleeve – Twittereality?

A number of people are predicting a new substantial platform is around the corner…



Wouldn’t it be great if 3d virtual reality headsets could also have the capability to view, film and send information to 3d printers?

We could video and send our nephews and nieces a copy of their favourite football players signed t-shirt  or a copy of the trophy  at the event we are attending.


Even if it is just in miniature, until we can all own multi-functional full size 3d printers!

Or maybe, a copy of a signed programme at a theatrical event.

Or a beautiful piece of sculpture, or jewellery for a birthday or christmas or simply as a ‘I love you’ present, when we are feeling creative.

Or maybe a delicious piece of cake?

Or maybe I am just getting carried away?

Did you know, that right now, there are 3d printers re-creating 2d works of art in 3d, for blind people to touch and experience? 


3d art.jpg




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Woo hoo! 800 followers.  Thank you!  I know this seems a tiny number for you big hitters out there. But six weeks ago, I had 30 just by default and knew virtually nothing about Twitter.

Now, coming to the platform via Blab, I’m impressed with what I have re-discovered and the uses for Twitter that I hadn’t felt compelled to use before for business.

Particularly, as DM’s (direct messages) can be meaningful now. I kind of hope that Tweets can’t be edited, a change that is under consideration currently…  So, you have to get it right first time, it feels part of the ethos.



This post includes a big shout out to a few people who have been incredibly welcoming and kind this week to me.

So this post is to mainly say thank you.

First of all to K.P Kelly.

KP Kelly.jpg

I watched a Blab live streaming event he made about privacy online.  One of his guests was a young student, Savannah Campbell who had been stalked via an app using geo location.  Nothing sinister happened, but it does point out some of the negative possibilities of revealing too much information online.

I asked KP after the broadcast via direct message, what equipment I needed to get started on Blab and how difficult it was to use.

He kindly replied with a nice message, saying a laptop was fine to start with and that the software is very easy to use and to do a Test Blab and perhaps arrange one with Savannah and he would jump in and help out with the technology if needed.

Super nice guy!

Savannah is a great young woman, helping with a fantastic initiative at her Uni for kids with severe illnesses. For details see the link above.

SavVB profile



A cause very close to my heart, which will have it’s own post early next year is about terminally ill children and their families here in Australia.  I had the privilege to interview some of the volunteers who help at a beautiful ‘home from home’ in Manly, Sydney.  I’ll post my article about Bear Cottage soon, but feel free to look and contribute to this wonderful hospice right now!

Then later in the day, I was watching another Blab by Leslie Samuel who is a senior executive at Social Media Examiner.  All about making video. His guest was You Tube star  Luria Petrucci

Luria Cali Lewis.png

I decided to follow her, and signed up for which will unravel the mystery of video.  It starts on January 16th 2016 and I will be passing on interesting information to you.

She also was incredibly helpful, and offered to have a look at my first offerings and give me some tips and was super encouraging.

Basically, some of her advice was not to expect your first video to go viral!  In fact, like any other social media platform, expect to build your followers or ‘tribe’ slowly.


Check that your content is in line with your audience’s needs and most of all ‘commit’ to the process.

I think that is one of the hardest parts to realise that to really engage an audience, you have to ‘show-up’ every day.  Post consistently, respond to your group and understand that slow and steady will win the race.

Engage with your audience as much as possible.  K.P.Kelly wrote this helpful article about Twitter but it works across all social platforms.


So back to the hot tub analogy in an earlier post. Cup by cup fill the tub and after quite some time it will be full and bubbly!



I also took part in a couple of Periscopes by a New York photographer, Jeffrey Shaw. Unfortunately, I only joined mid way so didn’t catch all of his pearls of wisdom.  But one that resonated with me was this.

Harness the chaos.  He put it slightly differently, encouraging everyone to embrace chaos and welcome it as a creative force.

It’s true that it does get your mind buzzing trying to read, listen and watch to a huge amount of information but for me personally, the only way, I am going to manage a social media business well, is to step back, become very organised, and self disciplined.

Time for a digital editorial calendar! (as against writing notes on a bit of paper!).

This week I am trying out several approaches and will let you know my findings. There are quite a few new ideas around that look appealing, but I wont prejudge.

When you start out, it seems like an enormous mountain to climb and it is…

Check out some of the respected big players like Hootsuite, and Hubspot and say, half a dozen social media influencers and subscribe to their platforms and read what they have to share, and listen to their podcasts. Watch their Blabs/Periscopes. Read some of their books.

Don’t jump in too quickly, or it really is easy for it all to become a snowblizzard that means you can soon lose all sense of what direction you were orignially heading in!

hootsuite-logo-feature-feature1.jpegHubSpot_logo_high_res_2_.jpg     Web

My particular favourites are (in no particular order)🙂

Jeff Bullas; Joe Pullizzi, Rebekah Radice, KP Kelly,  Leslie Samuel, Peg Fitzpatrick, Mike Kawula, Scott Monty, Luria Petrucci, Mike Stelzner, Guy Kawasaki, Kim Garst, Brian Fanzo, Ian M Calvert, Rachel Miller and Donna Moritz.

And I discover new inspirational people everyday.

The very first person who inspired me to look at social media about six years ago was Mari Smith. I was on a learning curve with a small business, but everything you said was sound.  If this ever goes anywhere, I’ll be thanking you for your wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm, long before many others jumped onboard.

Many of these people have websites or blogs that round up all the latest in social media, and in the case of Hootsuite and Hubspot, and Social Media Examiner they have a huge amount of information for the complete beginner in their ‘evergreen‘ posts.  They are a great place to start.

Whether you are a complete novice, or want to keep up to date with ongoing trends and best market practises, you can’t go wrong attending one of Social Media Examiner‘s online conferences like SMSS16 for example.


They aren’t overly expensive, especially if you subscribe early.  List the names of all the speakers and follow them. You can re-watch their presentations throughout the year.

In my experience, as I have learned more, I have gained more from them, particularly on topics I knew virtually nothing about.

Go to the MentionMapp app and see who the presenters follow and follow some of them.  Apparently, about one third of the people you follow, will return the favour.

Screen Shot 2015-12-22 at 3.43.21 PM

I love MentionMapp. It is really useful for practical research.


I would take your time though, explore the pages, and get to know the online persona a little bit, then follow in an engaging way.

Wildly following hundreds of people at the same time, may result in some chunky numbers, but you need to be able to respond.  People talk about ‘growth hacking‘ (this is a good comprehensive guide by SocialQuant also an excellent source of knowledge).

I have to be honest, and say, I don’t really understand the term or at least why people would want to.  Apart from the obvious ‘vanity metrics’ how can it be useful?

Everything that I have read, that has made sense, is that you can’t take short cuts and end up with meaningful engagement, but I will experiment with a few ‘tips’ and report back.

Time is obviously an issue, especially when you are growing more than one platform concurrently and for a variety of clients.  And some of those clients might want visible growth fast, even if it isn’t ideal.

Brian Fanzo made a comment on a Blab he recently made about people constantly asking him, ‘how do I move my 10,000 Twitter followers to another platform’.

Brian Fanzo

His answer was ‘these are people, not numbers‘ and fake engagement doesn’t work and it is down, to putting in the work. ‘Showing up‘ just as Luria Petrucci said.

Focus on following people in your industry and naturally you will get followers back from the same sphere.  Don’t use automated DM’s to thank them for their follow unless you really are time poor. At least in the beginning with only a few hundred followers, make the time to engage and reply on an individual basis.

Take the time to read their posts and re-tweet one of the most interesting ones, and thank them for the follow at the same time.

Use a tool like ManageFlitter to find out who isn’t following you, or who has ‘unfollowed’ and cut out your dead wood.

The goal is an ‘engaged‘ audience.  It doesn’t matter a hoot, if you have a million followers and only 100 of them are talking with you!

One size does not fit all, so experiment with what works for you.

Tim Fargo said to me via direct message, and I quote. ‘Do what you want.  Honestly. The vast majority of people will be fine with it, and as for the rest.  Who cares.’

Online networking and marketing is very much like real life.

Well how about that!



Another very helpful fellow marketeer called Ian M Calvert recently spent some time on Skype with me talking about potential business ideas.

Ian M Calvert.jpg

I am really keen to explore different avenues but very much in ‘start-up’ mode, but he gave me a lot of food for thought and who knows where it might lead.

I have found so far, it is often the most successful people who give the most of their time, I guess that is what sets them apart.

Ian is based in the UK, and is an ‘influencer’ there.  It is exciting to think of the potential business opportunities that can so easily be global.

I’m very grateful for his help and all the others who have helped smooth this chaos so far.


Once Upon a Time

Once Upon a time

Many years ago, when I was working for a food magazine in London, I ran the promotions department.  I wrote sponsored features, advertorials and so on.  Paid for by a client, like Twinings tea for example.  It was my job to come up with ‘stories’ that appeared to be editorial, while subtly promoting the product.

With Twinings, we created several recipes that included their tea, invited readers to come up with their own, and the winner received a weekend at a country house hotel (Lygon Arms) in the Cotswolds, a pretty part of the world with an afternoon at the Polo.

I commissioned an artist to paint images of the hotel.  It was winter time, and the Cotswolds were covered in snow and he created beautiful works of art.

Lygon Arms

It was one of my most successful promotions, Twinings were very happy with the response and the readers had beautiful, useful content to use and one lucky reader, a luxurious weekend away to boot!

At the time, I wondered how I would ever use that particular skill again ever in my life.  And for many years didn’t really, turning to traditional journalism for a living.

And now ‘inbound marketing’ has arrived and brand ‘storytelling’ is popular.  And I am very happy!

If I can help any of your writing requirements, please let me know.


And finally…

Although, it is extremely time consuming, learning all these new things, there is a quote that Richard Branson loves, which I will share here.



And so far, I am very happy to say, it has also been a LOT OF FUN!

I ‘said’ to Mike Stelzner that I felt I had learned more from the curated Social Media Examiner content and online Summits, than I had in expensive marketing courses in the past.

I hope you have gained some useful information from this blog, or found some great people to follow.

I’m going to post once a week, a round up similar to this, about social media marketing for people starting out and topics that stand out to me or just might be of interest.  So follow me, if you think it could be helpful.

I’ll also be making a few videos, and will be making a TEST Blab this week with one of my daughters on a subject dear to our hearts.

Hannah is a qualified PT instructor and particularly interested in helping kids learn about healthy living and how to incorporate exercise into their lives in a fun way. (She also does some part-time modelling – so thought I would share a pretty photo with you – as a proud mum).


I’ll schedule an actual Blab once I get Blab savvy🙂 and I hope to see some of you there!


Exciting times!





Miguel Maestre


Here are some essential tools for getting active on social media. Some basics for beginners just like me.

Everyone is currently talking about visual and video and how much traction they attract when you add them to a post.

Clearly that is a no brainer.  Add a visual!



I love live streaming apps like Periscope and Blab and can see they are a great way to communicate with people.

Nothing better than actually seeing people live, faults and all and being able to connect directly (or not) with them.

This is some up to date info on how is changing as it grows, dictated mainly by its users requests and suggestions.

It was the brainchild of Michael Birch who had outstanding success with Bebo before selling the platform in 2008.  He re-bought it in 2013 with a view to re-vamping and the birth of Blab…

Brian Fanzo is pretty much an ideal when it comes to promoting this sort of material.

Very authentic, and passionate about his values.  I love his positive values about making the internet a place for good, and his great enthusiasm.

Essential kit. for Blabbing etc.


Screen Shot 2015-11-29 at 3.42.53 PM

I also watched a great Blab today with Rebekah Radice about powerful visual marketing.


Lots of great tips in there and she comes across, as did the other co-presenters as really genuine people, who have great messages to share.

One thing that also makes complete sense to me though as well are PODCASTS.

You can listen as you drive to an appointment, walk or run on a treadmill or just when you have that odd spare moment, or perhaps laying awake at night plotting world domination on social media, and simply cannot sleep!

This is a really good and easy explanation about how to get started using a Podcast from Hubspot.

It explains what equipment you need to use and a step by step guide that even the most technophobic person (like me!) can understand and use.

I’m going to buy a Blue Yeti microphone but check out their post and see what suits you.


Apart from that, you perhaps only need a stand for your smartphone, or simply use your laptop.

It doubles up for use with the live streaming apps so makes sense as an investment.

I think we need the armoury of video (live streaming or not) to amplify our messages or those of our clients. Let’s face it You Tube has being doing this well for decades.

Some people are obviously more suited to this than others.   But now it is entirely acceptable to publish content that isn’t fine tuned to a second of it’s life, this opens up a world of opportunities for marketers.

Especially if you have a client who might take to this sort of approach.

I have a particular Chef in mind, who I am going to suggest should use Blab or Periscope as he will be brilliant in front of the camera and I have no doubt will be a really positive marketing tool for him.  He has a big personality and clear presence in front of a camera.

Hassan M'Souli


Not THAT long ago, there used to be some pretty terrible television advertising in Australia on occasion.  The idea was you took a car sales man (often plus son or other family member) and basically shouted on screen at your audience.

Clearly it was ‘vanity’ advertising.  Some poor soul was parted from his money who had deep pockets and not much sense.

I guess they probably sold some cars, as any publicity is better than no publicity right?  But happily, those days are over.

Advertising has transformed beyond recognition here in the last 10 years and a I can see a similar change in on line marketing.

As little as five years ago, landing pages were all about HUGE calls to action and aggressive in-your-face lead generation.

We now are in another stage, where customer relations and building relationships are the keys.  In-bound marketing is where we are at currently.

Mad Men would have raised a perfectly groomed eyebrow.






It is great that now if something goes wrong with a product or customer service is lousy, we can address this verbally and very openly online. In a customer centric world, how we respond to complaints and how quickly is becoming increasingly important.

So this is another essential piece of reading Social Media Resources for Beginners

This is also from Hubspot and contains a vast amount of really useful ‘stuff’.

Highly recommend you take a look.  If this out of date by the time you read it, then I have a feeling there will always be brilliant updates.  These guys have their finger/s on the pulse.

My first encounter with social media was with Social Media Examiner If you haven’t subscribed to their newsletter/podcast/Blab, then go do it.

They come across as nice people, their conferences are affordable and have proven a really good ROI.

I’m enjoying Mike Stelzner’s Blabs on a Friday.  Although unfortunately they are live at 3am Saturday for me here so have only caught one as it happened, but there are always the repeats.

I highly recommend you have a look & listen to these.  I’ve picked up information in an enjoyable way, and it is really ‘of the moment’ and covers a lot of topics in short that can save you a heap of time.

When Pinterest decided to add a ‘search’ option to the site, so that if we see something we like we can find out where we can purchase it, or something similar – these guys were onto it straight away.

There is SO MUCH to read and keep on top of.  This is a bit of light relief, finding things out without having to plough through acres of script.

I was followed by these guys today.  They call themselves ‘Unscrambled’ and are actually very funny.  Check out their podcasts.

They cover hot topics, like ghost apps, for example, but in a really easy to listen to way.  Mainly they talk about social media, but sometimes get diverted (but in a good way).  There is a lot of laughter, so not for the too serious minded.

I don’t know about you, but I am happy to get my knowledge through a bit of light hearted banter now and then.

They remind me a lot of a couple of Australian radio dj’s called Hamish and Andy

These guys are hysterical.  Nothing to do with social media at all, but if you want a bit of a giggle on a gloomy day – they’re your men!

Another podcast, you may not have come across that is very informative is created by a company called Newsmodo .

These are journalists, headed up by Rakhal Ebeli who make podcasts that cover specific topics in social media.

I will put my hands up and say, I have a vested interest in promoting this as I occasionally write for the company.

They interview top global social media influencers and definitely worth checking out.

So my last tip of today, is that apparently when you add eight (not seven or nine) photos to your blog, you get more attention.

This will be a little experiment, in whether this is so🙂

Fairly, hard to tell with my band of stalwart followers that I can actually count on two hands…

But, another little nugget from the multitude of posts, podcasts and whitepapers etc. that I am covering, is to consider social media, in this way.

You have a hot tub and everyday you are adding a glass of water.  At first it seems as if nothing is happening, but after a couple of years (yes sigh! a couple of years) then it is full and overflowing. That is when the magic happens.


Or perhaps it is just sink or swim?

Let’s hope we all SWIM!




Always those ‘what if’ moments.

I joined Twitter in 2009 but found 140 characters difficult to communicate with.

I’m not known for my brevity and I just left it alone and concentrated on Facebook.

When I created an app for Chef Miguel Maestre, I launched his social media via Facebook and Twitter and posted as a slightly mad Chef for around 18 months to help build up his ‘tribe’.

Miguel Maestre.png

In the beginning Miguel, who is a funny, extroverted Spanish/Australian Chef wasn’t interested in social media.

In the end, his wife told me she would gladly throw his smartphone out of the window, as he was forever checking his Twitter follower numbers!

He now works regularly for a very popular programme on Channel Ten, here in Australia called ‘The Living Room’.

The Living Room - Channel Ten.jpg

Miguel has become extremely successful, and deservedly so.

While we were making the ‘app’ he told me about his experiences as a young assistant working in a kitchen in Scotland.

(My spiritual home)

He would spend literally all day peeling onions – having moved to Scotland to further his career and ambitions.  It was hard and boring work, but he stuck at it.

One of the many upsides was that through being there he met his lovely wife Sascha. Fifteen years and two children later all that chopping has paid off.

I went to watch one of the live tv productions of ‘The Living Room’ and it was, as these things always are, very slow and repetitive.

In between takes, things were pretty boring despite the guy who was doing a pretty good job at warming up the audience.  He got me onside when he said they had ‘Kate Bush’ in the front row. Meaning me, apparently.

That won’t mean a lot to most of you reading this, but she was a singer that was one of my contemporaries who I quite admired.  But I digress…

So, during one of the breaks, I said to Miguel “don’t you find this a bit boring?”

No, was his reply, chopping onions for 8 hours straight is boring!

He is now travelling around the world on many wonderful adventures for the programme.

The point being, he put in a lot of extremely hard work to get where he is.

So, my ‘what if’ moments?

If I had followed through with Twitter, and taken the advice of a few people who said when the app was launched, set up your own social media business you would be perfect for it.

If I had only known, that the way to monetize apps was to offer a ‘lite’ version then sell in options. But nobody had worked that out back then.

But I don’t regret a thing.  You only learn from the things that don’t come easy.

And I had a huge amount of fun visiting Miguel’s restaurant in Manly.  Even at 9am in the morning, the music was loud, the staff were enthusiastic as they prepared for the day ahead and the beach was just in front of us.

I’m having another go at ’social media’  and using what I have learned.

Like Miguel with his onions, you have to shed a few tears to get to where you want to go.

Onwards and upwards!





Starting up social!



Just so that #Prada for example, may feel like sending me a gift for mentioning them.

Prada handbag


Stranger things have happened, I have been upgraded several times on #Emirates (yes giving it another go…) on flights back to the UK for no apparent reason.  I am definitely NOT complaining.

This week, I learned there is quite a discussion about DM’s on Twitter that has been going on for a while.  DM’s are not  Doc Martens but Direct Messages.

Doc Martens

By the way, I own a pair of these but they were hi-jacked by a daughter fairly quickly.

Back to business.

DM’s are now as long as you like!  That is if the person you are posting to is a follower. They used to be 140 characters.

Many Twitterer’s dislike DM’s intensely.  Especially, if they are being used to flog products.

The ones I receive, generally just say ‘thanks for the follow’ and here is my Linkedin address, or similar.  I can’t see much harm in that.

I was a bit precious about the first few, thinking they could not be bothered to write a reply/thank you.  Twitter has a very specific etiquette!

But even with only 10-20 new followers a day, it gets to be a bit of a chore to thank everyone personally.  However, so far I have and mostly have followed people who follow me.

Over a certain number, which is surely our aim, then DM’s are essential. I guess it is just getting the approach right.

My Twitter followers are up to around 430. I have been lucky enough to get a few major ‘influencers’ on board who have all been very helpful.

I still find it amazing that someone like Tim Fargo bothers to reply to DM’s from ‘newbies’ but I suppose that is one of the reasons he is so successful. It helps a lot though.

I discovered an app called MentionMapp .  I highly recommend you have a look.  Check who you are connected to, choose some people you would like to be connected to and find out who they are talking to on Twitter. Then follow them!

I have also subscribed to Iconosquare this week.  My next step after getting my Twitter followers up to around a thousand, will be to start working on my Instagram account.

I have chosen iconosquare to create my website with.  I hope the hype lives up to the promises, or the other way around!

Basically, I just want something that allows me to use my skills and doesn’t make life too difficult with coding issues and the like.

Instagram now allows ads. and is picking up a lot of Facebook traffic.

Call me cynical, but as FB owns Instagram, and now has so much information about all of its users that it cannot help but make money via advertising – I don’t think FB cares a fig about the average domestic user experience anymore.


For my part, I am glad I was part of the first tranche of FB.  I made lots of friends through various online groups and created a few, and could easily contact people I wanted to.

These days, I barely see posts from those ‘friends’ who don’t engage much.

FB – it doesn’t mean I like their posts less…! I don’t think the algorithms work well from a friendship point at all.

FB betrayal

I’m sure they help with targeted advertising though, and that will help future clients.

So, that is a potential silver lining.

I hope this blog helps you. Clearly social media is going to be a constantly evolving medium.

So, the lesson I learned from this week is to find ‘influencers’ and find out who they are talking to and engage with them if possible.

I don’t think that will change. Oh and Twitter Lists are very important!




Extraordinary town planning.

Visionaries – we NEED them.

I was supposed to be starting my ‘proper’ blog today.  Which I will do very soon. Next week in fact.

Apologies to my very tiny band of followers, but as they include a Poet, a Chef and two really fabulous women,  I am certainly happy with the quality of my followers, but will totally understand if the blog is not of interest to you any longer, and please feel free to ‘unfollow’.

I am pretty certain that it is heresy in these circles to say that, it’s okay anyway.

We only want to read what is of interest to us, and our days are short enough already.

So absolutely no offence will be taken.

I plan to journal my experiences in creating what will one day hopefully be a successful social media business.  Helping small businesses drive customers to their websites and businesses,  but also longer term, turning this blog into a blue-print in how to use social media usefully for someone just like me.  And there is a tiny chance, if you are reading this, you might be in some way like me.

It will be on one of those books that say, if I knew back then what I know now, I could have saved myself a lot of time.

I am also discovering that not all the ‘experts’ necessarily have all the answers.  Although clearly, if they have hundreds of followers and successful businesses then they are clearly doing something right.

My children occasionally, say that some of the pearls of wisdom I inflicted on them growing up were quite worthwhile.  I am hoping the same applies if I put the effort in, to learn and share the business of Social Media.

I would be a cross between Bree, Gabrielle and Lynette if I was a Desperate Housewife.  Which perhaps I am.

As freelance journalism becomes a tricky beast indeed when competing in a stupidly competitive market, I am looking at other ways to survive.  So this is my escape route I hope.

cast desperate housewives


Anyway…I heard a wonderful story I would like to share with you today.  A man who had a challenging childhood in England, and worked in the local council, in the beginning of the last century had a wonderful vision.

This is his story. I was watching ‘Who do you think you are’ with the British actress Una Stubbs and this is her ancestor (info via Wikipedia). una stubbs forever worzels sidekick for me


Welwyn Garden City was founded by Sir Ebenezer Howard in the 1920s following his previous experiment in Letchworth Garden City. Howard had called for the creation of planned towns that were to combine the benefits of the city and the countryside and to avoid the disadvantages of both. The Garden Cities and Town Planning Association had defined a garden city as

“a town designed for healthy living and industry of a size that makes possible a full measure of social life but not larger, surrounded by a rural belt; the whole of the land being in public ownership, or held in trust for the community”

In 1919, Howard arranged for the purchase of land in Hertfordshire that had already been identified as a suitable site. On 29 April 1920 a company, Welwyn Garden City Limited, was formed to plan and build the garden city, chaired by Sir Theodore Chambers. Louis de Soissons was appointed as architect and town planner, C.B Purdom as finance director and Frederic Osborn as secretary.The first house was occupied just before Christmas 1920.

Let's move to Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire

This really was a #It’s a Wonderful Life story.

It might have even inspired the film?

Perhaps, perhaps not.  But it did evolve from some similarly thinking people.

Thank goodness, there are many good people in the world. It feels especially important this year for obvious reasons.


muslims around the world condemn


I began this particular journey three weeks ago on the 2nd November 2015 with approximately 10 Twitter followers.

Today, on the 22nd of November I have 390 and have some big influencers in that number who have been lovely and supportive.

It is all still feeling quite fuzzy and nice, but am not expecting it all to be rainbows.

I would LOVE it if you stayed with me for the journey beginner followers.

It might not last very long, but it might be fantastic and I’d like you with me if you can bare the ride and share the success if it happens.

One last thing tonight, having spruked the John Lewis ad. and Burberry, and having become an Australian Citizen this year I have to include this beautiful Qantas advertisement.

Also it is really quite lovely as ads go. With Thanksgiving coming up and Christmas in the not too distant future, feels like home is a great sentiment.
















Cat on a hot tin roof!


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#Love yourself – health, wealth and kindness

I wish I was as brave and cool as one of my cats…

I drove my car today to the end of my road (luckily a little alleyway down the side of our house) and stopped at the end – and bump! an unexpected visitor appeared.

Mittens then strolled down from the bonnet and hopped off!

My 11 year old cat had been sitting on the roof of my equally elderly car and had come along for the genteel ride of 5 seconds to the end of the road.

I immediately went into overdrive about WHAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED. She could have jumped off in front of the car as I drove off, and I could have driven over her.  Unimaginable! or at least unbearable to imagine.

But she didn’t.

She waited for the ride to stop and took her leave. No panicking, just taking it in her stride.

Cat on a hot tin roof.

Cat on a hot tin roof.

Not only did Mittens survive to give me close to a heart attack another day, but she taught me something.

Is it worth taking a chance and not to sweat what might happen till it does?

Even if you find yourself on the edge of something quite scary, there is a good chance that it might turn out alright. Better than alright, even exciting.

I am hoping this is the beginning of an exciting new I start my new business.  Thank you already to some wonderful people who have been so supportive.

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Persistence pays off – Chef Yoji Tokuyoshi


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I absolutely love this video and this Chef’s story.  He almost gave up and then he became one of the best.  In the world…

He followed his dream and found his personal success with persistence and skill and a passion for his chosen path.

Tokuyoshi Restaurant, Milan.  Chef Yoji Tokuyoshi.  

I have worked with a lot of Chefs over the years.  They are an interesting bunch, but one thing that is consistent is that they work extremely hard and the best are completely passionate about their craft.

This is a wonderfully executed video, and tells the story beautifully.  I hope some of you share it.  I think it is a work of art in itself.

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Serenity Saturday

I must be psychic🙂 as I was writing my ‘man on the moon‘ blog post yesterday John Lewis was announcing it’s annual Christmas advert, aptly named #manonthemoon.

Should I say “great minds think alike?” – please get in touch next year JL if you need some inspiration🙂

Unashamedly pulling on the heart strings and following in the steps of all the songs that celebrate the heady mix of old and young, and hearth and home that make up the best of family times at Christmas.

Playing on our longing to be ‘home for christmas’.  ‘Tis the Season when it is completely okay to be a total schmaltz.

Even Chris Rea gets away with it while he is ‘Driving home for Christmas’.

With half my family in the UK and my immediate family here with me in Sydney, Australia I always have mixed feelings at this time of year.

It is difficult getting into the Christmas spirit – as I sit here listening to the waves in the distance and looking out on blue summer skies.

Plenty of time for inspiration though, and thank goodness for Skype.  I don’t miss the cold, dark nights but I do miss the Christmas lights and cosy fires and pubs.  Carols in beautiful churches and silly christmas jumpers.  Most of all I miss my family.

I’m off to the beach now.

It’s a tough life but...

It’s a tough life but…

I think my US friends have it right.  Christmas talk after Thanksgiving. 

But on the other hand, if John Lewis deems 6th November the start of the celebrations, who am I to argue?  I do DRAW A LINE at anything before November though.

The stuff of madness, especially if you have young kids who are going to be besides themselves with pre-‘must-have’ presents/Santa’s letters/Disney movie hysteria even if you don’t start celebrations until December.

My chosen ‘lift off’ point is December 1st – to go back to the ‘man in the moon’ theme…and my particular indulgence is It’s a Wonderful Life which a girlfriend and I watch every year, on opposite sides of the world, over the same weekend.

And like the proverbial pearl in the oyster, grows larger and more glossy with age – like our friendship.

Which reminds me while I like this


So if you can’t be ‘home for Christmas’ – what do you miss most of all?

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