The “Better With Trek Light Gear” Photo Contest Is Back!

Spring is in the air and it’s time to kick off 2011 with another photo contest.  If you don’t remember or weren’t following along […]

Building A Happy Community With Social Media

{ I realize that this post and the one before it are likely more appealing to other small business owners, entrepreneurs and the like, as opposed to some of the other topics covered on this blog.  However, one of the great things about the community I’ve seen form around Trek Light Gear is that there are a lot of people who follow along, regardless of whether they even own one of our products,  simply because of a shared desire to follow their passions and maybe even one day start their own business (or grow an existing one).   Since this blog is ultimately an extension of what I enjoy and what you as readers are interested in, I hope you find these posts valuable.  As always, let me know what you think! }

When writing the previous post “The Cheers Effect: Why Social Media Works For Business And How To Use It”, I ended up removing a few paragraphs I had written for the sake of brevity.  Looking back on the post I realize that I ended up leaving the ‘Why’ of the title intact but took out much of what I wanted to say about the ‘How’ when it comes to using social media, so I decided to follow it up with this post (I highly recommend reading the initial post before this if you can).

The message I hope was still intact: ‘how’ you should be using social media is to foster a happy community by creating a personal or emotional connection between you and your customers.  Sure, social media can be used solely as a marketing tool to bring in new customers, but community is what drives a movement, speeds up the viral spread of information and at the end of the day I believe it’s those connections and relationships that make us happy on both sides of the bar.

So, how does a business go about creating that personal connection between themselves and their customers?  Opening a physical bar like Cheers is one thing, but how do you achieve that Cheers Effect with only 140 characters at a time, a profile page, a blog and a keyboard?

To answer that question I’ve decided to break down what I’ve learned and practiced since starting Trek Light Gear and my hope is that sharing it will help to create more positive communities online and hopefully create some good conversation along the way.  These social media guidelines are specifically rooted in building a passionate community and spreading happiness – if your first goal with social media is figuring out how to get a YouTube video to go viral, you’re going about it all wrong. If you’re looking to start a business, getting ready to take the plunge for your existing business or non-profit, or just curious about social media and online community in general, start here….

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Lessons In Happiness: The Product Is Secondary

I just got off the phone with a customer who called in just to say “Thank You”.

He didn’t have any questions, any concerns or […]

The Cheers Effect: Why Social Media Works For Businesses And How To Use It

If you read the emails in some of my previous posts on happiness, you’ll quickly recognize some of the same themes and ‘happiness triggers’ […]