06 Apr 2010
Hello, my name is Josh and I’m addicted to Google Analytics. This is a post to help fellow bloggers identify their addiction. If you answer yes to 3 or less, then you’re safe. If you find yourself agreeing with 3-5, you may want to continue watching for the warning signs of addiction. For those bloggers reading this that can relate to 6-9 of the addictions signs, you should consider admitting yourself in to the G.A.A (Google analytics anonymous). You will find a strong support group to help break free from the bonds of addiction. For those that can relate to all 10 “signs,” you’re obviously a super star blogger with massive site traffic. Can you re-tweet this? PLEASE!
10. Each night you go to bed counting referrals instead of sheep.
9. Before you go to sleep you pray, “Now I lay me down to rest, I pray for visits from the West, as China and India awake, please click my links for heavens sake.”
8. You go into a cold sweat as you enter the weekend still needing 400 page views to pass last weeks numbers.
7. You think about posting an expose on sex addiction including “exclusive” quotes from Tiger Woods and Jesse James.
6. You refresh you stats page 30 seconds after every time you tweet your newest post
5. You secretly tag your posts and images with key words, Brittany Spears, Avatar, Porn, and Justin Bieber
4. The first 30 minutes of every visit to your psychiatrist covers how your value and self worth are not tied to your page views
2. To be trending on Mashable is one of your bucket list items
1. You read that people like to read lists so you put together THIS list in hopes to boost your traffic for the day.
*photo credit www.thedailydigi.com
30 Mar 2010
Tops from Taste Washington
This weekend I had the privilege of attending Taste Washington on behalf of my DrinkNectar.com wine blog. It was an honor to represent the East Side (of WA) and to help the Washington Wine Commission with their first ever WWTV series of events. I have to give MAD PROPS to Yashar Shayan for all his work in orchestrating the technology and herding cats (wine bloggers / writers / nerds/winos). 15 interviews and a few seminars are available at the Taste WA UStream Channel. Scroll down to see the two DrinkNectar exclusives!
For my wife and me, the event consisted of the seminars on Saturday, six hours of tasting on Sunday, and then a topless wino’s gone wild party at Purple Restaurant (okay, everyone’s tops stayed on). I’ll be giving a full write up of the experiences that should come out Wednesday or Thursday, but in the meantime, here is a fun list of my most memorable experiences!
Meeting the Twitterati
I can’t even begin to count the number of “friends” that I met in real life for the first time. Because of Twitter, it was like I already knew everyone I met. The meetings were exuberant and full of hugs! Some notables (my apologies if I forget any) @wawinereport, @clivity @winomagazine @bricksofwine @divatink @shona425 @nwtotemcellars @sojengirl @sojencellars @winefoot @writeforwine @tomcwark @pmabray @deniseslattery @chefmangna @decanterbanter @wabrokers @nicoleevents @tarynmiller @dearcheri @yasharseattle @hardrow@winepeeps @czcellars @watastingroom @seattlewinegal and more!
I’ll go in more detail on Saturday’s seminar tastings where I got to taste amazing wine from Gramercy Cellars, Cote Bonneville, and Col Solare in the full wrap up. During the grand tasting Sunday, there were probably over 1000 wines to taste. We probably tasted (and spit) close to 75 different wines. During tastings like this there are several good wines, but here are the five that stick in my mind!
K Vintners – Motor City Kitty; 2007 Syrah ($30)
Pepperbridge – Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 ($55)
Nodland Cellars – Private Blend 2005 ($35)
Betz Family Winery– Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 ($65)
NW Totem Cellars – Late Harvest Viognier 2006 ($28)
Food to Dine For
Picazo 7Seventeen – Chef Mangana was serving an amazing Lamb Chop and the chocolate dessert goodie was heavenly (wish I knew more about what made it so great)
An Affair to Remember
Hotel Max Seattle – Swank, sleek, urban, artsy, and beautiful come to mind when describing the Hotel Max. Factor in the comfy room, city views, and central location – this is a must stop. “Dear Hotel Max, thank you for sleeping with me.”
Legends and Stars
I consider myself lucky to have spent a few hours with Paul Mabray, of VinTank fame and Tom Wark of, well…of Tom Wark fame. Not only do I feel like I got a masters course in marketing and wine business, my head was spinning with ideas on how to conquer the world.
It was also amazing to meet the one and only Barbara Evans. Yep, I met Barb…oh, sorry… Seattle Wine Gal (@seattlewinegal for you Twitteraddicts). She is everything you think she is…over the top, smart, intense, fun, and pretty. Don’t underestimate her, she is always thinking, watching and observing. I learned a ton from the brief moments we had to chat during the TasteWA wrap party. She knows her Social Media stuff. Thanks Barb for the ideas and inspiration!
My interview with Jarrod of Alexandria Nicole Cellars
My Interview with Jean-Michele of Pepperbridge
27 Mar 2010
DrinkNectar is excited to be invited to Taste Washington in Seattle this weekend. I’ll be a part of the new live video stream. Can’t make it to Taste Washington in Seattle this weekend? Have no fear – stay tuned to TWTV for all your seminar, interviews, and vino news during the event. The live video stream is below.
Here is a schedule:
Saturday 10:45 – Food and Wine Pairing with Tom Douglas
Saturday Noon – 1:00 – Various interviews (tentative)
Saturday 1:45 – Mighty Malbec with Sean Sullivan
Sunday 4:00 (ish) to 7:00 pm - Various winemaker interviews
I want to thank Yashar Shayan and the Washington Wine Commission for asking DrinkNectar to be a part of the event. I also owe huge props to Hotel Max for co-sponsoring my trip. If you’re staying in Seattle, make Hotel Max your first choice.
Tips for Enjoying Taste Washington
- Have a gameplan. Wineries bring a limited supply of juice. The top wineries are often very busy and you could run the risk of catching them when they are out. If you’re keen on trying some Quilceda Creek, Leonetti or Long Shadows Family you better get to the table early.
- Hydrate early and often. The combination of tasting, walking, talking, indoor lights, etc can be a recipe for dehydration. Drink water!
- Eat. Nothing says “wino wimp” faster than someone who can’t hold their juice. Tastings of this grand scale are intimidating. You’re not going to be able to taste them all, but working your way through 30-50 wineries on an empty stomach is a disaster waiting to happen.
- Spit. Don’t be afraid to spit. The enjoyment of wine is the swirl, sniff, and sip. After 10-20 small one ounce pours, you’ll be tipsy even if you’re hydrated and have a full tummy.
- Socialize. Some of the best times at events like this don’t come from drinking wine, they come from interacting with and learning from the wine maker and their staff.
If you’re not able to make it to Taste Washington this weekend, consider coming to the Spokane event on June 6 - DrinkNectar will be there too!
16 Mar 2010
The online Washington Wine Tasting Event of the year is on March 25. This leaves only a little time to secure your Washington Merlot and prepare your activity for the evening. The beauty of a Twitter Tasting is that you can participate however you feel comfortable. With nearly 80 Washington State wineries participating and hopefully 1000 tweeters, there will be plenty of opportunity to join the conversation. Think of it as a giant cocktail party. You may not be a part of every conversation happening in the room, but the opportunity to network, connect with other wine lovers, and learn about Washington State wine and the great wineries is awesome! You can even participate from the comfort of your living room…in your boxers (just close the blinds).
Below are two videos that showcase ways to maximize your participation in a taste and tweet event.
- If you’re near a participating winery – stop by their tasting room for a bottle of their Merlot. Join them for the event on March 25, starting at 5PM.
- OR…Get a group of friends together and host a tweet-up. You can do this from home or at a local bar or restaurant (just make sure they have Washington Merlot).
- OR…Shop local! Support your local wine shops and buy a Washington Merlot to drink from the comfort of your own home.
- Follow along on Twitter using the hashtag #WAMerlot (video shows instructions).
- Tweet what you’re drinking, join in the conversations, share your tasting notes.
- After the event you can search the hashtag #WAMerlot to follow new wine lovers and connect with the wineries
- HAVE FUN!
*If you’re not on Twitter, follow along at http://search.twitter.com – enter #WAMerlot in the search box to follow along.
WINERY PARTICIPATION TIPS
- Sign up at http://wamerlot.eventbrite.com so we can properly promote you before and after the event
- Promote your tasting room gathering using your email list, Facebook fan page, and on Twitter (use the #WAMerlot hashtag so we can re-tweet you)
- Offer a special on your Merlot through the event
- During the event, encourage people in your tasting room to tweet using the #WAMerlot hashtag. Even better, have them mention you too!
- Some wineries are projecting a twitter stream on a wall for a visual Twitter interaction too
- Hopefully you’ll be busy, but if you have the opportunity tweet fun facts about your winery, Merlot, and Washington State
- Interact and have conversations with people tweeting
- After the event, search the #WAMerlot hashtag to follow new wine lovers and connect with people who mentioned you and were drinking your wine.
- HAVE FUN!
This event would not be the success it is without the inspiration and participation of the following people on Twitter @RickBakas, @WAWineReport @SeattleWineGal @WineBeerWA, @Shona425, @yakimavalley @wineeyak, @wbcorbust, @nwwineandre, @catie, @lunabeanmedia
11 Mar 2010
Tweet, re-tweet, friend, fan, follow, hashtag, status update, like, comment, @reply, DM, micro-blog.
Five years ago were these words in our everyday vocabulary? When did it become normal to verbally tell 3028 people that you have a headache and bacon is the cure? Do people really care that your dog just spit up on the new carpet? While skeptics argue that Social Media is removing all sense of privacy and creating a generation of narcissistic people with a lack of interpersonal skills, the new normal is an interconnected world of information that moves at the speed of light.
So, what now? You know you should be twittering on the interwebs. You’ve even created a Facebook “fan page” and have a Twitter Account. Why do you still feel unsure about the difference between a tweet and a re-tweet?
The following video posts will help uncover ways to maximize Twitter and Facebook. These videos are intended to be basic and quick. Stay tuned for additional posts in this series that uncover more in depth uses of Twitter and Facebook.
The Strategy Basics: 5 minute tips
If I could distill the benefits of social media for business into one sentence, I think it would be, “Extending the relationship and engagement with your customers beyond your brick and mortar (or web site).” This manifests itself in so many ways from customer service, to relationship building, product launch excitement, and more. A good strategy can turn your fans into brand ambassadors.
Fantastic Facebook Fan Pages: 5 minute tips (okay, six minutes)
Most people are familiar with Facebook for their personal lives. 350 Million people use Facebook. What are the ways to maximize Facebook for your business without being consumed by Farmville and Mafia Wars? Facebook is a one to many conversation. When you speak, many people see your message. There are strategies to develop conversation and engagement with Facebook, but the nature of the platform remains largely a one to many communication channel.
Top Twitter Tips: 5 minute tips (maybe a little longer)
Twitter was developed as a mobile tool. It provides real time instant access to information and interaction with other people. Currently 75 million people passionately engage in twitter conversations. Tweets range from the mundane “I ate a huge stack of pancakes for breakfast” to the TMI category (too much information) “My toe fungus keeps spreading, does anyone know how to make it stop.” Tweets can be self serving, informative, conversational, inspiring, derogatory, etc. Twitter is a many to many conversation. When you say something, not only do your followers see it, it is easy for them to share that information with their followers. Good content, information, and news can travel across the world at a breakneck pace.
Social Media = Business
- Before the car, the horse and buggy let you connect to your customer across town
- The car let you more easily connect to your customer across the state
- The plane let you more easily connect to your customer across the country
- The internet let you connect to your customer across the world
- Social Media lets you connect to your customer immediately, personally, and passionately like never before
Use the tips in these videos to maximize your Social Media presence. Watch for future video posts that expose greater Twitter and Facebook engagement tips.