Archive for the 'Social Media' Category

How to Participate in Twitter Chats

Every Wednesday at 9PM EST, I host the #EntreArchitectChat Twitter chat. Each week we discuss, live and in real time, another great topic about business, leadership or life, inspiring architects, designers and creative professionals across the globe. It’s lots of fun and I always take away information, which I can put to work immediately at my firm.

If you are interested in joining us for the live Twitter chat #EntreArchitectChat, the following is one requirement and a suggestion:

1. Join Twitter (if not already tweeting). It’s fun, easy and very interesting. Visit www.twitter.com and claim your user name.

2. Each Wednesday at 9 PM EST, visit www.TweetChat.com and enter #EntreArchitectChat. This will allow you to participate in the live Twitter chat with all your other twitter traffic filtered from your live twitter stream. TweetChat is not required to participate, but it makes live Twitter chats much more enjoyable.

See you on Wednesday at 9 EST. Please spread the word about #EntreArchitectChat.

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Tomorrow (Wednesday, 11/7) at 9PM EST, Join Us on Twitter for #EntreArchitectChat

I am still without power here in Chappaqua, but the show must go on!

The theme of the first #EntreArchitectChat will be “Secrets to Survival and Success”. We’ll chat about how to get more work, how to stay motivated and how to survive during a down economy.

If you are interested in joining us for the live Twitter chat #EntreArchitectChat starting Nov 7 at 9 EST, here is one requirement and one suggestion:

1. Join Twitter (if not already tweeting). It’s fun, easy and very interesting. Visit www.twitter.com and claim your user name.

2. On November 7 at 9 PM EST, visit www.TweetChat.com and enter #EntreArchitectChat. This will allow you to participate in the live Twitter chat with all your other twitter traffic filtered from your live twitter stream. TweetChat makes live Twitter chats much more enjoyable.

See you on Wednesday, November 7 at 9 EST on Twitter. Spread the word about #EntreArchitectChat.

Introducing #EntreArchitectChat

Starting Wednesday, November 7th, I will be hosting the Entrepreneur Architect Twitter Chat (#EntreArchitectChat). We’ll meet on Twitter every Wednesday evening at 9PM EST to discuss business success and the practice of architecture.

Mark your calendars. Share with your friends and followers.

What’s a Twitter Chat? Click here for a description: http://weblogs.about.com/od/twitterfaqs/f/TwitterFAQTweetChat.htm

You’ll learn a bunch and it’s lots of fun. Don’t miss it.

Follow me at http://www.twitter.com/EntreArchitect for more info!

Entrepreneur Architect has a New and Improved Twitter Name

Follow me now @EntreArchitect. I tweet daily about business success and the practice of architecture. Come join the conversation on Twitter.

Leave a comment above. Let me know your Twitter name and I will follow you too.

Make it Your Job

Today I was watching a recent talk by Chris Brogan and among many thought provoking ideas, he proposed one tasty tidbit that stuck in my head.

Chris is a successful marketing pro, NY Times bestselling author, magazine contributor, blogger, speaker and mega-nerd (he knows more about comic superheros than anyone… ever).

He didn’t just decide to be successful… and BOOM, he had 220,000+ followers on Twitter. It took lots of time and dedication. Today he writes 4,000 words a day and earns thousands speaking at business conferences throughout the nation.

How did he do it?

He made it his job. He earned it. It took him 8 years to reach 100 subscribers to his blog and years more before it finally took off.

Since 2006, I have been blogging and building my social media empire. The difference between Chris and me? I haven’t made blogging my job. It has always been a “side job”. I know blogging is important for the success of my business, but I have not dedicated the time and effort that is required to have it reach its full potential.

For my real job, I get up every day and go to work. I do all the things necessary to make Fivecat Studio the success that it is. Why? It’s my job! If I don’t do my job, I fail. The whole company fails.

Want to succeed with social media and blogging… or anything else in your life? Make it your job and earn it.

My Time Online: Presenting Portfolio, Creating Context and a Top Google Rank

This week, we’ve been exchanging website URLs over at the Entrepreneur Architect Linkedin Group. It is very interesting to learn some background on the people we’re interacting with on that forum.

I shared our website URL (which is in the midst of an upgrade from our original site to a new one). Then, I posted links to all my other work online. Here is my original post:

In addition to our website at http://www.fivecat.com, below are the other places I spend my time online (and with my spare time, I’m a very involved Dad to 3 and I run an architecture firm).

Entrepreneur Architect Blog: http://www.EntrepreneurArchitect.com
Entrepreneur Architect on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EntrepreneurArchitect
Entrepreneur Architect on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/EntrepreneurRA

Fivecat Blog: http://www.LivingWellinWestchester.com
Fivecat on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/FivecatStudio
Fivecat on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/FivecatStudio
Fivecat Squidoo Lens: http://www.squidoo.com/Fivecat

Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/markrlepage

I am very active on all of the above sites. It has absolutely benefited the firm and me professionally. I have a Pinterest account, a Google+ account and a Tumblr account as well, but I don’t spend much time with these (yet).

How about you? Other than actively participating here (thank you very much) and our new sub-groups, Architect Led DesignBuild http://goo.gl/U2heu and Architect Developer http://goo.gl/DJZTr, do you spend time online elsewhere?

Where? Why? and How much time?

A few group members asked if all this online presence was worth the effort. Do I really benefit from spending so much time online?

First, I enjoy writing and interacting with people all over the world. I have met so many people and have learned so much from my work online.

As for the business, we literally built our firm using our website. When we launched the firm in 1999 almost all of our work came directly from our website. Today, it’s about 50%. The other half comes from referrals from happy clients. We have a form that prospective clients complete when we meet for an interview. One of the questions we ask is where they found us, so we know exactly from where our leads are originating.

The blog, twitter and facebook do not typically lead directly to work, but they allow prospective clients to learn more about Fivecat Studio and more about me. They create context. When I meet with prospective clients, many tell me that they feel they already know me and that most certainly gives me an advantage when presenting a proposal.

All the work online also leads to very high rankings on Google, which is the point if you want your website to lead to sales. If you’re not found on the first page of a Google search, you are invisible to your prospective clients. Search “Westchester Architects” on Google and you will find us within the top 3 results on the first page (the results vary day to day).

I have never quantified my time online. I probably don’t want to know. I don’t recommend that everyone invest as much effort online as I have, but for us, it has been very, very successful.

More Entrepreneur Architect

Looking for more Entrepreneur Architect?

Follow me on Twitter @FivecatStudio or “like” me at Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/EntrepreneurArchitect.

How I Use Social Media

Although not technically “social media”, I have been blogging at http://www.livingwellinwestchester.com since 2006. I have had many clients remark that they read my blog and felt that they had grown to know me before we actually met. For me, that alone makes it worth the time required to post on a weekly basis.

Recently, I have been much more active on facebook, http://www.facebook.com/fivecatstudio and Twitter, http://www.twitter.com/fivecatstudio. It takes less effort than the blog, but I find that I have a much smaller audience. I use facebook to post firm news and updates on current projects. When I interview with prospects I direct them to not only http://www.fivecat.com, but our facebook page. People seem to enjoy seeing the progress of active projects.

I have found that Twitter is great for communicating with local business people and other networks I find interesting. I also use Twitter to distribute informative links to my followers. If nothing else, Twitter is a lot of fun.

The above web presence is all support for my firm, but I also use the platforms to support my interest in business success and the practice of architecture. I post to this blog when I have something worth writing about. I use facebook (http://on.fb.me/emCLWK) to post and store business focused links and video. I also tweet at http://www.twitter.com/entrepreneurRA and follow more business minded and inspirational tweeters. As you may have noticed, the business of architecture is where my passion lies.

All of this web presence helps my Google ranking tremendously. If you search “Fivecat Studio”, “Mark R. LePage” or “Entrepreneur Architect”, it’s all me. More importantly though, search “Westchester Architects” (which is the term that my clients are using to search for a firm) and you’ll find Fivecat Studio on the first page. This is important to our success. We need to be there. More than 80% of our prospects say that they found us on the Internet.

Are you using social media to attract clients?

The Entrepreneur Architect Linkedin Group has been very active lately. We’ve been discussing fee structures, branding, client acquisition, firm naming, business plans and startups.

The question of the day today is about social media. Are you actively using social media platforms such as Linkedin, facebook, Twitter or YouTube to promote your business, make connections, influence people or attract clients?

Let’s talk.

Do You Tweet?

From Architectural Record:

It seems like everyone these days is constantly plugged into their technological devices, tweeting their whereabouts, Facebooking their statuses, and publicizing anything and everything about themselves. Companies are even engaged in the phenomenon, using social media tools to market their products and services. But for architects, do these online pursuits pay off?

Design firms that have integrated social media into their practices report a spike in interest in their work — particularly from journalists, publishers, and other architects. However, few can say their efforts have directly led to new projects … yet. Social media is so new to the profession that it may take a few years before the benefits can be measured, but some firms are investing now with high hopes for future rewards.

Read more.

Being present online and social networking has worked for us at Fivecat Studio.

About three hundred people read my Living Well in Westchester blog every day. Several past and future clients have become our “fans” on Facebook and we’ve received several new inquires for residential projects directly referencing Twitter as their source.

Are you ready to tweet? Come “follow me” at www.twitter.com/FivecatStudio.


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