Here is the full interview that was published in the digital magazine ‘Bygfut’ which is all about social media
1. Tell us a bit about yourself – background, business, etc.?
I am a Swedish Londoner and I’ve lived in London for just over six years now. Throughout my career I’ve had many different jobs and have worked for big corporations in sales, marketing and ecommerce as well as in many small businesses. In 2009, during my time at the British Standards Institution (BSI), I was the first person to take on the role of Social Media Manager which created a ripple effect in the business and all the teams began to be trained about what you can do with social media.
For the past two years I’ve had my own business which focuses on three things: professional speaking, training in social media and creativity, and consultancy. I also provide online training in the form of ‘Social Media Boot Camps’ for leaders and business people who would like to start using Twitter and LinkedIn.
I love mountains, I am a keen skier, and I’ve also been hiking in the Alps in the summer which is amazing. For many years I’ve been an active member of Junior Chamber International (JCI) a global network for young professionals. I’ve been in roles as Local President of JCI London and JCI UK Website Manager.
2. How do you see Digital Media in London – is it growing or is it static?
Digital Media is everywhere in London. I can see that it’s growing but many businesses are not embracing it fully. They hesitate about how to engage and don’t always get it right. It’s still relatively new to use social media and we are constantly learning new techniques. Actually, I think that’s the case with all marketing, things need to be tested. With social media you are always in testing mode, you can always measure what works.
3. You have just published and launched a new book called Digital Leadership. Tell us a bit about the inspiration behind it.
Several things inspired me. I’ve been lecturing and training people in social media, creativity and leadership for several years and I felt that I had to share my thoughts with more people. To share your knowledge with others is an inspiration in itself!
I went along to a friend’s book launch in November last year and got fired up by listening to her story and I started writing my book the following week. That was in December and I had written over sixty pages by the end of January.
4. What has the feedback been like so far with regards to the book?
It’s been amazing! Several of the people I’ve met have bought a copy and their feedback is very positive.
I’ve been invited to speak at several events and conferences and people want to know how they can be more creative in their organisations. Social media, creativity and leadership all work well together and that’s what I write and speak about.
5. How often do you use Social Media channels to promote your business?
I use social media for my business about five days a week. I am a small business and only have a few people helping me. I check my social media channels almost every day.
6. Would you say that these social media channels have been helpful in terms of getting the word out about what you do?
Yes, very much so! I have landed all my international speaking gigs thanks to social media. Additionally, everyone checks out my online profile before they decide to work with me. I have also been featured in a book about female entrepreneurs in London thanks to my blog.
7. Which Social Media network is your favourite and why?
My favourite is Facebook because that’s where I have the most friends – I like to read about what they’re up to. I find that I’m also using Twitter much more this year. I find that more and more people are using Twitter in a good non-spammy way to create good content and good connections.
8. Has there been a moment when you thought the whole Social Media frenzy was becoming overwhelming?
Many times! I’ve even had a detox from all my Apps on my iPhone for ten days. I removed the Apps that I use all the time, that’s when I discovered that I use my social media networks in the same way as my email. I realised that I rely heavily on them as communication tools. What I find most overwhelming online is the amount of emails I get. Fewer emails would make my life easier.
9. Do you think Social Media is important for every entrepreneur out there?
Yes, it is important for all of us to look after our online profile. Everyone you meet will check out your online profile. Entrepreneurs are selling themselves and an engaging online profile that contributes to their network is more effective than a quiet, invisible online profile.
10. What advice would you give to an entrepreneur or small business that is not yet on Social Media, but is curious to know more before getting on board?
Here are my best tips, and they are about getting the basics right:
A website that looks professional is a must for your online profile.
Join Twitter and start tweeting.
Pimp your LinkedIn profile so it stands out.
I think you make a better and more professional impression if you have a blog on your website, ideally posting at least once a month. In one year you will have a nice collection of content that hopefully will stay alive for a long time online. For a small business I also believe that you should update your website and make it look alive and active. Don’t have news that is over a year old as your latest news. This looks as though you are no longer in business.
It’s a basic step to be on Twitter and I think everyone should get an account. If you are an entrepreneur and looking for new business partners and investors they will judge your online profile and if you use Twitter in a smart way you will make a better impression. Twitter is also a great research tool and I always use it when I am at different events and connect with the tweeters who are using the same hashtag (#).
Your LinkedIn account is key to your professional profile! Update it on a regular basis and understand how it works. LinkedIn changes its functions every now and then, so stay ahead of the game.
More people are using podcasts and video channels to share their thoughts. This can be very helpful if you are developing new content. Some things are easier to explain with the spoken word.
I know many entrepreneurs who have built their businesses up by simply sharing their new ideas and business offers on their personal Facebook profile. Your close network will give you referrals.
One network that I think will be a winner in the future is Google+. You might already have a Google+ account if you have a Gmail account. Last week I held a Google Hangout on Air using Google+, that’s similar to a live webinar, and it worked very well. You can view it on YouTube here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pAowSrEe1EQ&feature=share
Google are developing advanced features for Google+ but it’s not there to replace any other social media network – its functions are very different with Google Places, the connection with YouTube and Google Hangouts. Google+ also helps you with SEO in a powerful way – Google owns Google+ and they gives their users a SEO boost when they share their content there.
If you love images you should try Instagram and Pinterest, they may help you to share your ideas with more businesses.
I don’t think everyone has to be on all social media channels. However, you are likely to find some that work better for you and that’s why you should check them all out and see which ones you prefer. When you use social media in your personal life you will learn how it works and will then become better at using it for your business.
Finally, never stop learning. You can always tweak your online profile and make it work better for you.