Starting Fires

by · September 6, 201025 comments

Two weeks ago, I posted a call to arms for anyone who wanted to be a regular blogger here at Social Media Explorer. It was a call-to-arms for, “smart thinkers, status-quo challengers, tool reviewers and people who understand social media marketing better be about business or you’ll be flipping burgers soon.” I put an exclamation point on the post by saying, “I want to share this platform with thought fire-starters.”

Today, I have my fire-starters. Twelve new authors join Social Media Explorer now, each with a unique perspective, experiences, insights and attitude. (Yeah, I dig attitude.) I’ve asked them to challenge themselves, me and each of you, too. It’s a challenge to raise the level of conversation and discourse here, to make Social Media Explorer an intellectual stimulus for conversations around social media marketing, public relations, digital marketing, online communications, advertising and branding and more.

My challenge to you is to hold us accountable. Sure, there will be posts or topics that don’t stir the pot or challenge our thinking as well as the day before, but what I think we all want is content that doesn’t follow the crowd a chow time but still delivers smart insights to running your business or serving your clients or organization. We want to be helpful, but thought-provoking. Insightful but pot-stirrers. I think that’s what I’ve delivered in the last three years and what you expect of me. My new colleagues will have to be held to that standard.

And those colleagues are stellar. Each was chosen carefully. There are no social media gurus here. They’re all experienced and proven in business, not just blogging. They’ve served their companies, clients or passions with great thinking, smart doing and even smarter questioning over the years. We have category expertise in everything from strategic planning to humor writing, from design to coding. But more importantly, we have 13 people with a passion for learning as well as teaching. More on how they were identified in a moment.

First, and in no particular order other than ladies first (because that’s how my mother raised me) and without me, here are your new contributing authors for Social Media Explorer:

Angela
Maiers

@AngelaMaiers

Angela Maiers

Heather
Rast

@heatherrast

Insights and Ingenuity

Stephanie
Schwab

@socialologist

Socialologist

Eric
Brown

@Eric_Urbane

The Urbane Way

Jordan
Cooper

@notaproblog

Not A Pro Blog

Mark
Dykeman

@MarkDykeman

Thought Wrestling

Broadcasting Brain

Andrew
Hanelly

@hanelly

Engage (TMG Custom Media)

Really Bad Parenting Advice

Adam
Helweh

@secretsushi

Secret Sushi

Jeff
Larche

@TheLarch

Digital Solid

Ike
Pigott

@ikepigott

Occam’s Razr

Mark
Smiciklas

@intersection1

Intersection Consulting

Tom
Webster

@webby2001

Brand Savant

And Helweh has already compiled an SME Author Twitter list for those interested: http://twitter.com/secretsushi/socialmediaexplorer-team

The authors were chosen carefully. I published the call-for-authors because I wanted people who read SME and authors who wanted to write for me. I didn’t want to go begging people to contribute. I established some expectations in the post and reviewed each applicant (I wound up with over 50) for those qualities. Some of the ones I chose I was familiar with (and thrilled they raised their hands). A couple of them I didn’t know well but quickly discovered they had the qualities and experience I was hoping for. I would humbly submit that I will push them to be better than they are. They, in turn, will push me. Each of you, however, will push all of us.

And as an aside, I am not going to stop blogging. No, I won’t write every day in addition to these fine folks. My blogging will be more sporadic, but I’m not going to stop or even slow down. Having more authors means I can focus on diving deeper into some subjects and not worry that missing 2-3 days of posting will affect your expectations. What I’m doing is finding a way to provide you with more excellent content from smart people.

Thank you for continuing to count on Social Media Explorer. Hopefully these new colleagues will further your confidence in us and help you continue to learn and grow as a communicator.

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About Jason Falls

Jason Falls

Jason Falls is the founder and chief instigator for Social Media Explorer's blog and signature Explore events. He is a leading thinker, speaker and strategist in the world of digital marketing and is co-author of two books, No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide To Social Media Marketing and The Rebel's Guide To Email Marketing. By day, he leads digital strategy for CafePress, one of the world's largest online retailers. His opinions are his, not necessarily theirs. Follow him on Twitter (@JasonFalls).

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Comments & Reactions

Comments Policy

Comments on Social Media Explorer are open to anyone. However, I will remove any comment that is disrespectful and not in the spirit of intelligent discourse. You are welcome to leave links to content relevant to the conversation, but I reserve the right to remove it if I don't see the relevancy. Be nice, have fun. Fair?

  • http://thoughtwrestling.com/blog Mark Dykeman

    It's an honor and a pleasure.

    • http://www.secretsushi.com/ Adam Helweh

      I second that.

  • http://socialbutterflyguy.com/ DJ Waldow

    Great idea, Jason. Looking forward to some non-fishbowl voices … as long as you'll still drop in your snark a few times per week.

    DJ Waldow
    @djwaldow

  • http://twitter.com/webby2001 Tom Webster

    I need a new head shot. I look much more like George Clooney than that picture would lead you to believe. Oh…sorry…Rosemary Clooney. I meant Rosemary.

  • http://twitter.com/maddiegrant Maddie Grant

    Awesome! Really looking forward to reading all you peeps!

  • http://www.socialbrandingblog.com/ Steve Campbell

    I see a Penn Stater up on the list. Nice! I think 1 in 12 people in the world are probably related to PSU in some way lol.

    • http://occamsrazr.com Ike Pigott

      Well, I am related to Penn State, in that we'll be hosting those fine Nittany Lions in Tuscaloosa this coming Saturday.

      • http://www.socialbrandingblog.com/ Steve Campbell

        And if you happen to lose to those young Lions and their true freshman quarterback, it will be a long drop down from the top of the mountain. lol

        • http://occamsrazr.com Ike Pigott

          I won't say that *can't* happen.

          But I will say that Penn State fans have class, win or lose.

          Good luck on Saturday – here's to a clean, injury-free game.

      • http://twitter.com/webby2001 Tom Webster

        …and I actually have an M.A. from Penn State, so it's at least 2 in 12, but I'm crap at stats.

  • http://wwwmdigitalsolid.com Jeff Larche

    I’m looking forward to it, Jason.

  • http://yoursalesplaybook.com paulcastain

    Looking forward to it and I applaud you for taking things in a new direction!
    Respectfully,
    Paul Castain

  • drewmclellan

    Jason,

    Looks like you've selected a fine assortment of bloggers — congrats. I would like to point out that 2 of the 12 are Iowans. We grow them smart here!

    Drew

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  • http://insightsandingenuity.com Heather Rast

    I'm looking forward to the new adventure contributing to SME will bring. My appreciation to Jason and my esteemed cohorts!

  • http://www.birdsontheblog.co.uk/ Sarah Arrow

    Well done :) That's a great list and I look forward to the upcoming blog posts.

  • http://www.converstations.com MikeSansone

    A fantastic group! Looking forward to learning from the Explorers:-)

  • http://twitter.com/patrickboegel Patrick

    Congrats to everyone and you as well Jason, this is going to be fun to participate in this evolution of SME.

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  • http://oldmedianewtricks.com Daniel_Honigman

    Congrats, Jason. Looks like you're on your way to having your own mini-Mashable. Very ambitious ;-)

  • http://twitter.com/AngelaMaiers Angela Maiers

    Jason,
    I am so honored and proud to be a voice in this conversation! Looking forward to meeting and learning from all of you!

  • Geanna
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