So, @Social Media Today had a great article titled 12 Reasons why Your Business Should be Utilizing Employee Advocacy, with a great Infographic from @LinkedIn. This was fantastic for me — and timely – because I had some talks lined up on Employee Advocacy and Social Teaming. I’d like to highlight the numbers I think are the most relevant here.

On Average, a company’s employees have 10X as many connections as the company has followers. 10 Times? Yes — and this is proven. In many of our Social Selling and Social Culture programs, we know for a fact that the average employee has 240 connections, and with their two degrees of connections, their social reach hits about 3.8 million connections. Now, to be sure, they won’t reach all those connections, and they’ll need a level of frequency to establish success, however their potential of reach to the company is far greater. The company page needs to rely on followers and there are only two ways to get followers: from existing followers (like employees) engaging, or from advertising. On average, the employee page has only 3% of the potential reach of the employees, and that is best case from our experience.

Every two employee shares from the company page on @LinkedIn result in a company page view, every six shares results in a Company Page follower! Wow, that is staggering, that is all it takes? Well, almost. We need the participation of those employees. How does that happen, how is that orchestrated?

Let me give you a real-life example from one of our clients, American Family Insurance. While at a recent conference, I was able to listen to long-time associate @TomBuchheim, who led the charge at American Family for their Employee Advocacy Program. I have always known they were on it, and proud to say I have been there since the early days of social, and frankly their approach was brilliant. In fact, it was very synergistic to our Social Teaming methodology for sales and culture development.

He mentioned how they formed teams of champions that would act as advocates for the brand and be willing to share content provided by the company to their LinkedIn pages. They started with a small group, then they continued to grow the teams. They created rewards and recognition for their efforts and it bonded the team and humanized the brand. They are even now tracking the success of this program to new business. They had so much success that it became the “in thing”, to a point where people are lining up to be on the next selection. “Pick me!” is how ! Imagine that.

So you see, these are simple metrics which prove the value of employee advocacy. Tom’s story at American Family Insurance is evidence and it continues to grow. We are excited because all of our programs at @Social Jack, Sales, Career, Recruiting and Culture have Social Teaming at the core. In fact here is our definition below, see how it resonates to the story above.


Social Team Definition

A group of professionals who have complimentary skills (1) driving to a common objective, goal or destination for which they (2) hold themselves mutually accountable for collective performance. They stay constant on their journey with the (3) purpose of building stronger relationships, trust and always think of other team members with genuine reciprocity. A Social Team (4) utilizes online social networks and the power of their targeted connections, within their sphere of influence, to (5) enhance the team’s relationships, reach, performance and success in reaching their common destination.

If you would like to read more, check out our blog post on Social Teaming:

Social Teaming – It’s All About Who You Know.

Here is a snapshot and link to the revolutionary infographic by LinkedIn

So whether you are in the middle of this and working to figure it out, ask us about Social Teaming to energize this effort. If you’re not sure if management will approve it, show these numbers and this great infographic by LinkedIn to your boss. Think of it as “it is time or get left behind”, because it’s just too easy and it promotes culture development at the same time. What are you waiting for?

We hope to see you and your employees online and working together for a stronger brand!

In reading recent articles the last couple of weeks, it seems there are mixed reviews on the good and the bad around the purchase of LinkedIn. I have a few thoughts on this:

  • Microsoft has stated that it has plans to integrate LinkedIn and Social Selling into its existing CRM product, Microsoft Dynamics CRM- which is second to sales. I believe this is great for Microsoft but not so sure how it will impact the rest of us that do not use Microsoft CRM. There are also current LinkedIn tools, like “Sales Navigator,” that work well in the sales force. It will be interesting to see how that plays out.


  • My personal thoughts are that Microsoft is genius at wanting to own the data that LinkedIn has. The business intelligence that LinkedIn has from a social perspective of how people are connected and how people work and communicate together, there is nothing out there like this. Microsoft will be able to obtain social trends, social data, business trends, business data all blended together. I believe this is the main reason why they wanted to do this and also give new life to their new CRM products.
  • Microsoft has historically not been that successful when it comes to social networking or social media. This to me validates that now they’re seeing the value, and it has increased, of social media and social networking. Many people think that this is potentially the death of social media, where these platforms cannot survive on their own, however I believe just the opposite. Microsoft has proven the value of connection, which is what we teach in our Social Jack training programs on coaching individuals the value of their connections based on their own ROI (Return of Investment).
  • The fact that Microsoft paid $26.2 billion in cash for 433 million users, tells me that they found the cost per user came out to be $60. In our system, we look at it by value of user based on the ROI and outcome of the relationship, which is expediently more. The fact that Microsoft has placed a value on those connections, which have relationships, shows us that there is a value in social networks and connections.

So, connect with someone new today and you never know where it will take you.

The inspiration for this blog post came from two recent conversations I had with fellow colleagues, along with life experiences that come along with working in the Social Media field. We currently live in a world that is ever changing, and we have access to so many different social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn) in which we can connect with our network.


Think about Facebooks new feature Safety Check, during major disasters the feature will let friends and family know you’re safe, and can mark other friends as safe.


Now let us discuss your entire network. Over your lifespan, your network has grown by connecting with people around us and we can classify these connections and put them into three different categories.


The first is “Friends.” My definition of friends is, people who we connect with, with the intent for relationship. They can be career connections, friends and family, or even the team you build for your life.


The second is “Followers.” That is defined by, people who have interest is us in some capacity, either professional, or personal and they literally follow what you do. As a professional, often times people follow your social media pages to stay up to date on what you are posting. Having followers is a choice, check your privacy settings on your social media accounts, because each platform is different.


Lastly, “Foes” can be identified as the people who connect or tune into your page, for reason of harm. Like theft identity, competition, or possible stalkers. When connections begin to feel disruptive they start to feel more like a foe.


Here at Social Jack it is purely about relationship building from connections and acquaintances with the intent to attract good targeted followers that someday will become friends and relationships we do business with. That stems from the practical business side of social networks. Once you have categories of friends, you can then decide how you want to operate those friends and networks, we define this as your Social Team. These networks and collection of friends can help you with building a business, marketing a brand, and having a good life team.


Remember that there are positives and negatives when connecting with people from your past, but above all it is your choice if you stay connect. Never feel obligated to stay connected if it is not a mutually beneficial.

Snackable Content: Winning an Audience One Bite at a Time

This past month, my team and I were able to attend The Social Media Strategy Summit here in our hometown of Chicago. The three days spent there I was able to interact with colleagues, and learn new techniques from them. At the summit there was a wide range of internet savvy people including Fortune 500 companies down to self-made entrepreneurs. These frontrunners were experienced in everything digital, communal, and content. 

Our contribution to the event was a workshop that helped people create, and utilize a fundamental content strategy and then launch it in a short order.

One thing we’ve learned over time is that content will become smaller, and more brief, for it to than become considered by consumption. Not only did we play the teacher role at the event, we were also learners. Did you know that the average internet user:

  • Has an attention span of 8 seconds, that’s one second less than the attention space that a goldfish has.
  • Visits 2,125 internet pages per month, that’s 1.12 pages per minute!
  • Views over 3,000 impressions per day


With user’s attention span becoming shorter, businesses have to adapt to grabbing consumer’s attention with less. What the doctor prescribed for this is called, “Snackable Content,” or content that is shorter. This means that:

  • Blogs are becoming shorter, and typically under 200 words. Think about Twitter and how tweets have to be less than 140 characters.
  • Videos are less than 60 seconds. Instagram made the switch from 15 second videos to 60 second videos, Twitter allows 30 second videos, Snapchat only allows for 10 second videos, and Vine allows six second videos.
  • Webinar and Podcasts are under 20 minutes, if you take a look at the content uploaded to TED the large majority of videos are between the range of 10 to 18 minutes long.

Amongst uploading shorter content, we as producers cannot forget to build rapport with our customers, but instead of doing it in minutes, we have seconds, and a few works in the place of paragraphs.

Take this advice and apply it to your online sphere, and I look forward to reading or viewing your shorter content virtually.

– Dean


Click  HERE to purchase your tickets to SMSS New York and use code ForwardProgress15 for a 15% discount!

Trump, Hillary, Cruz and Sanders – Twitter battle for the White House

By Dean DeLisle

In the interest of social media, social teaming and all things I love about twitter I just can’t stop helping myself on consuming stats around this election. It’s like a social freak show, but it’s also cool as our curriculum at Social Jack follows Social Teaming and these politicians are practicing at a variety of levels. Let me explain as we use Twitter as the social weapon of choice and notably the most used by all candidates.

First Things First – Accounts and Hashtags:

Trump – @realDonaldTrump

Clinton – @HillaryClinton

Cruz – @tedcruz

Sanders –  @BernieSanders@SenSanders

Social Reach 

One key element of Social Teaming is how far is your reach, to your ideal target. Well here are some stats.

Trump – has 7.2 million followers, at his announcement of the election he was at 4.35 million. His target is 45% female and either very young audience (some not old enough to vote) and the rest of the majority over 40 years of age.

Clinton – has 5.7 million followers, she started with 4.38 million at her announcement. She has 45% women, ages 18-40 make up her majority.

Cruz – he has 977 thousand followers and started with 518 thousand when he announced his candidacy.

Sanders – has 1.7 million and he started at 616 thousand on his announcement.

Summary: While Trump appears to have more, recent report state that 60% of his accounts are fake or idle accounts. Hillary has about 40% of the same. So that makes me feel like their numbers are more even than they look. Although wait till we get through some more of the evidence below and you determine.

Who they Follow 

While they all have had significant growth in their numbers, let look at who they follow. Networking and Social Networking is a two way street and let’s see how those number stack up!

Trump – only 41, mostly family, Trump companies and a few reporters, no competitors

Clinton – 643, mostly, campaign related staff and recently entertainment related people, she does not follow rivals or news reporters.

Cruz – 13.8 thousand, mostly seems to be people who have tons of followers, accounts with a background of American Flag, Confederate Flag, Bald Eagle, does not follow non-conservatives.

Sanders – 1,935, mostly news media, celebrities, labor unions and people from the entertainment industry.

Summary: this all seems pretty normal, with the exception of
Cruz, who seems to working the follow back game. This means he is follow thousands of people to get the follow backs to his accounts and build up his numbers. This is an old game in the twitter play book, so this tells me his social media folks are a bit rooky and lowers my feel of authenticity. The rest are pretty normal. I am impressed with Trump only following 41 and having such a commanding lead

Conversations – Tweet Activity

Trump – 31 thousand tweets, these are definitely mostly him. This is the most authentic, not sure if you like it or not but with the misspellings and rants, this is all Donald.

Clinton – with 4 thousand tweets, when Hillary tweets she uses (-H) to sign her tweets, the rest are her staff. They mostly tweet on speeches, gun control, affordable child care, causes she follows. She even tweeted her plan to defeat ISIS. She does have some Spanish tweets, impressive.

Cruz – 15.5 thousand, this feels like a social media team at work. He retweets news (mostly fox and similar) and I do applaud him as he re-tweets his supporters. Even if this is his team, great move!

Sanders – 7,681 tweets, while he has the least he feels the most connected to his followers. He has a higher re-tweet ration and plays the most.

Summary: We get the most real person (like it or not) from Trump, yet Sanders has the best connection to his followers. He engages with his followers at a much higher rate than the others. Hillary has good content, but not feeling the real person here, she is way to filtered for my liking. Cruz, is ok if you like talking to a social media team.

Final Summary

I am sure I will have more on this, however with our recent interview I promised everyone we would report on this further. As for Social Teaming, all of them has some traits and a few of the best practices. The harsh reality is that after the election, I would wager than most of these accounts will go hiatus, less the winner. That is the only sad part, building a team for a single purpose, then leaving until you need them again. This is my own personal view point, but believe it to be true, We will see after the election. Until then we can be amused by the stats and game here. So now let me give out some awards.

My vote is:

– Trump: Most real, authentic

– Clinton: Most newsworthy, best facts

– Cruz: Most old fashioned twitter techniques

– Sanders: Most engaged with his network

Hope you enjoyed this summary and found as much amusement as I did going through the numbers.



Here is a recent media interview with First AM Business with Angela Miles: video

Follow them on Facebook here.

*Statistics came from researchers Yu Wang, Yuncheng Li, and Jeibo Luo – study can be found here:

Who is Your Social Competition? You Might Be Surprised!

By Dean DeLisle


Social Selling


When we are looking at organizations we get called into three primary areas with our Social Jack™ Training Programs, Relationship Marketing, Social Selling or Career Advancement. One common theme is that all areas are not only looking to excel in their area and hit their goals, but they have a strong desire to know their social competition, once they know they have social competition!

The first competitor is probably the most obvious, it’s them. They many times are in their own way, they either are holding back from two primary reasons, fear or they hold on to the wrong social network (of people). What we see is that they have fear. They fear of knowing their true identity, what to do or say and who should they connect with among others. So they simply play small or hold back, which means they are in their own way! The second part of this is that they have the wrong network of people, this at the core can be fatal. Even organization construct very unproductive social networks and forget the target customers and partners, so we often have to reorganize out of the gate more than not.

Social Selling

Relationship Marketing Competitors

Your competition here are all the prospect and customers out there on your social network platforms, and in your databases. Are you holding their attention over the competition? We also see the competition look like content and platforms such as websites, landing pages and micro sites.

Social Selling Competitors

This one might be the most obvious depending on the organization. These are also prospects and customers, however they might be in control of your accounts execs, relationship managers, customer service or no one. As an organization it’s your duty to provide structure and training to your sales force, set guidelines, boundaries and a solid attack plan to form an intentional social network so the competition can’t penetrate.

Career Advancement Competitors

Flat out this is where you are in competition with your peers and can be tricky depending on the culture. We see this from two angles the inside out and the outside in. So if you are on the inside, its best to network with your peers and really work together for each other. Unfortunately many cultures don’t allow this so they tend to breed a protective environment and dictate survival of the fittest wins and this can be unproductive and harmful to growth in most cases. It is so much better to approach this from a position of authenticity and relationship. From the outside, it’s great to be in this mode to penetrate the walls of a corporation and take out someone who is in competition for a position you desire. Then remember to shift once you get on the inside, be the thought leader here!

In my next blog on this I will get into how to really take out the competition and what we see as our best techniques used by our Social Jack™ students. Social Jack™ was developed by Dean DeLisle and his team at Forward Progress in response to an overwhelming demand for their social media training and development workshops, which are delivered both in person and online. With, clients can select their professional destination, map out a plan, and access the coaching and training needed to support them to that destination. They will develop the skills they need to build and manage the social networks required on their journey.

Want to take your strategy to the next level? Join us  on Feb 10th – 11am CST: Social Jack™ hosts “LinkedIn – How to Knock Out Your Social Competition”

Are you wondering why some people are generating new business from LinkedIn and you’re not? Or, maybe why your competition is getting in front of your current clients? Join our webinar and learn how to use 5 steps to take out your competition and create new business. Register Here

Social Selling Step Two – Use Valued Reach to Ignite Your Social Reach by Dean R. DeLisle

Before we can ignite our Social Reach with Valued Reach (VR) we need to understand what Social Reach is. Through our friends at Hootsuite (they have a great glossary by the way) we have a pretty good definition:

Reach is a data metric that determines the potential size of audience any given message could reach. It does not mean that that entire audience will see your social media post, but rather tells you the maximum amount of people your post could potentially reach. Reach is determined by a fairly complex calculation that includes number of followers, shares and impressions as well as net follower increase over time. Reach should not be confused with Impressions or Engagement.

Social Reach


Now for Social Sales, LinkedIn Social Reach is pretty easy to see and understand. On your home page about half way down on the right you can see what your current reach is, as shown below.

Social Reach

So what does this mean? Well this means that I have 4,169 connections, people that I have either sent or accepted invites and are now my level one connections. Then those people have connections which are your second level connections. That with the next level of connections and groups you belong to make up that number. In fact, LinkedIn used to resolve this, now they just show you a few levels (shown below), which is ok, because I cannot even fathom thinking about a million let along 18 million!

Social Reach

So hopefully you are getting the definition of your social reach. Now in social selling, from our definition, Valued Reach is what we care about and teach in our curriculum. This is where we first define a destination or outcome to your sales goals, how much do you want to make by when. Then we determine how many appointments, proposals, closes you need to achieve that goal. Next we define the target, and determine who will get us there or help us achieve those goals. Next we build a structured, tactical team of TARGETED connections, clusters and hubs (defined in in Network Sciences ( by the US Army). The ones that will help you get to the connections you are trying to achieve. Not the thousands that you accept without knowing who they are and what they are about. We would prefer you just connect to those you know or people that you see potential relationship. Then we score the relationship in our system to arrive at your Valued Reach. Now you don’t have to have our system to get the juice we are talking about here, although we would like you to join us, you can still gain a valued reach for yourself by following these simple rules below.

Social Reach

In summary

  1. Own your destination, your outcome
  2. Be clear about the target that will take you there
  3. Build a team of connections with the intent for relationship
  4. Engage in relationship with your new team
  5. Keep scouting for more targeted connections (#3)
  6. Keep engaging and driving to your destination (goal)

Now – Your “Valued Reach” keeps going up – your “Social Reach” is now ignited!

About Dean DeLisle

For over 30 years, Dean has demonstrated his ability to accelerate companies, stimulate business development, and make operations more efficient. He has harnessed the ever-evolving power of technology, paired with his consulting, coaching, and training skills, to implement sound business practices. Using the power of online social networks, as well as traditional media, he has helped numerous clients pack the room for events, establish their online and social media presence, and develop countless company, brand, product, and service launches. Dean uses every tool available, weaving aspects of every medium to achieve the end goal and accelerate his clients’ business growth.




Blogging for the Topically Challenged

How many scintillating and insightful blog articles can you write in 1 day? Oh that’s right you have a business to run. If you are running a business that needs leads, don’t expect exponential growth from that one blog article you squeezed into your busy schedule. Don’t expect it after five. Or even ten.

Here’s the reality check you need around expectations for that spike in your Google Analytics campaigns into the uncharted waters of graph-dom:

“Once you write 21-54 blog posts, blog traffic generation increases by up to 30%.”


So, that is the breakdown, best case 21 – worst case 54. How can you get to the finish line? First you need to get re-inspired as to why you are going to climb this mountain. For instance, did you know:

  • Reason #1: Email is also sort of like blogging, so might as well make it worth the effort…”Among those who use e-mail marketing, companies that blog get twice as much traffic from their email than those who don’t.” (Source: HubSpot)
  • Reason #2: A good impression…”60% of consumers feel more positive about a company after reading custom content on its site.” (Source: Content Plus)
  • Reason #2a: A secondary good impression…”90% of consumers find custom content useful, 78% believe that companies behind content are interested in building good relationships.”(Source: TMG Custom Media)
  • Point #3: Your competition is probably getting the customers you want by blogging…“92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog.” (Source:HubSpot)


Now that you understand the WHY….Let’s dive into the how to get it done. Let’s look at some of the roadblocks – the main ones being: writers block and research!

TIP 1: Take A Break

Step away from your desk – with that glaring screen of Google Doc notes that make absolutely no sense. Just take your bruised self-esteem and take a break from the grind.

Leave the room. Go outside. Go for a walk, or even a run, and let the fresh air and kick-start your brain. Go see a movie and relax. Cook yourself some nice food, or check out the new restaurant that everyone’s talking about. In short, do something that’s new and different for you. The experience won’t just relax you, it will also rejuvenate you and spark some ideas in the process.

TIP 2: Find the questions that your audience is asking

Now let’s start mining Q&A sites like Quora to find out what else people want to know about.

Let’s say your topic is: Paper Towels

A quick search turns up no direct search results, we discover that people want to know …

Then we can turn our attention to Yahoo! Answers to find more questions people care about, like:

  • Why do paper towels absorb?
  • Where can I find information on the history of the paper towel?
  • Substitute for paper towels?
  • Is it possible to grow plants from wet paper towels?

These may seem like incredibly mundane or ridiculous questions to you, but keep in mind, real people are asking these questions … in public. If they’re spending their time looking for answers, why not spend yours providing them with them on your own site?

Every product on planet earth has at least 20 questions that require at least 2-3 paragraphs worth of information to explain – boom, you’re halfway there with 20 blogs cranked out!

Tip #3: Pop on over to your favorite news-feeds: Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn for what all the hoopla is about RIGHT NOW!

When you just can’t think of any way to make your product/service relevant – sometimes you have to gain inspiration from what other people are already gibber jabbering about online. If you’re feeling especially subject challenged – hop on over to Facebook or Twitter and read the newsfeed for 5-10 minutes. Are there any relevant news articles that you can provide an opinion on or add to? Are there any humorous tie-ins between a great play during a football game that you can relate to a smart play by a vendor in your industry?

Relevancy makes your content “clever” and quite frankly more likely to be read. This is where the likes and shares become a reality to you. Secondly, when you speak about something that is top of mind to your audience – the more likely they are to partake in the other 75% percent of information you are slipping in to create a connection. Also known as striking a chord!

Tip #4: “The Reverse Info-graphic Move” – Huge time saver.

Even if you’ve thought of the spin you want to put on your article relating to your business – there is still that whole fact finding support search step. ANNOYING and TIME CONSUMING! It can take hours to find factual arguments for your case. How about instead of Googling your topic for articles with facts – type in “Infographics on Hand-Towels vs Hand-Dryers” and select “Google Images”

Did you ever think about the fact that there would be more germs in the air by using a hand-dryer? Yes, I mean – I’ll admit it, I didn’t think about it. Now I am grossed out. Great….

Back to the point: That’s the kind of nugget of information that even Bounty could use as part of an article on “What Makes Bounty the Greatest Picker Upper.” It’s all about creating that “aha” moment that makes your reader think: “I’m so glad I just read that. Hey Suzy, did you hear… Bounty wrote this blog article about hand-dryers vs. paper towels – can you believe…” Equals clicking of the “share.”

One point for BOUNTY and for you! And, don’t forget – your fan wants to feel smart because he posted it. So ultimately, you could get a raise – Bounty a sale – and your audience a new friend. It’s all about that make everyone win thing!

Plus, info-graphics tend to have the meaty information without the long-winded storytelling around it. In one search you can probably scan 10 info-graphics for 10 seconds each and gather 10 new facts that are wildly interesting. Just think about it? If it’s on an info-graphic, it’s typically already gone through the scrutiny of “Is this interesting or cool enough to spend additional time/money to graphically illustrate?”


I hope you are feeling less like this….

You can conquer the blog writing mountain without losing your mind with the above tips! For more ideas on how to smoke your competition on the blogging front – just comment, like and share this article.

Thanks and hope to see you around again – ask questions in the comment stream if you like. It could be my next blogging topic!

Your digital marketing expert: Corinne Meier!



Okay, this first move is both easy and hard. At Forward Progress, when we engage in what we call a Rapid Launch Plan, we figure out where to help an organization structure their relationship and community marketing efforts. We often find that there is one critical thing that everyone finally has to deal with and we all need work on this, even us!

This is your first move with the relationship. We are not sure why we see so many people who have great landing pages, registration forms, website capture forms and often see people overlook that next step conversion. Remember, you started a conversation with your audience, don’t misguide them or leave them hanging. Think of your own experience’s online. What turns you on and what turns you off? Then think of what you are offering out on the net.

“What turns you on, what turns you off?”



blog 7

For example, you get a person to fill out your form, make a request or give their email, and what is your first impression? Follow these simple steps to test yourself.


  1. Ask people who enter your world how did we do, what do you think?
  1. Test it yourself, do you feel welcomed and tended to, do you feel a relationship forming?
  1. Track your success or failure rate to convert leads into customers


Remember once you do these, you can then adjust the experience of that first move accordingly. Your next customer could be closer that you think, like in your CRM or lead database, you just misfired, dropped off or forgot about them. Look and let us know what you find!

See you online – Dean