I have been using this blog to keep my social media organized and soon I will start writing more about specific social media strategies I use to promote my personal brand and my businesses.
The focus is that social media has a lot of power behind it, and it is getting stronger every moment. No matter what goal you are trying to achieve, having a successful social media presence is going to be part of achieving it.
I learned this in the past year, which has been one of the most interesting years of my life. As I wrote on a previous blog post, I got into social media before social networks even existed and the place to congregate online was AOL and AIM. I started building audiences on social networks when I was in the process of establishing my personal brand to promote my mainstream advertising network. Because I got into it early, and was doing a lot of things to get attention, I was able to build a sizable following online. At one point I had a maxed out 5,000 friend Facebook account, a Facebook Fan Page with about 15,000 fans, four Twitter accounts with around 10,000 real followers (one for each of my businesses; @VitoGlazers, @CPATank, @1WorldNetwork, and @HollywoodVineGroup now under new ownership), two Instagram accounts (one for myself and one for a concept I had called #CEOLife), and a variety of other social sites. If I posted a video, even if it was poorly made, it would almost instantly get 1,000-2,000 views. One of my biggest mistakes was not leveraging this nearly enough.
I didn’t know what to do with the audience, so first I figured I would go the business/entrepreneur coaching route. I had been coaching affiliates online for a long time and thought this could be a cool transition into more notoriety and higher consulting fees. Around the same time, I had the opportunity to meet and introduce former world leader Mikhail Gorbachev. I really wanted to do something unique for this so I signed up to take public speaking classes from legendary speaker Bill Walsh. In his class called Millionaire Speaker Camp, I learned a tremendous amount about public speaking and stage presence, and realized I had a natural knack and fearlessness in front of people that most people didn’t have.
A few weeks later I got to introduce and meet Gorbachev and it all went well. Per the advice of my public speaking mentor, I opened with a famous Gorbachev joke told by Ronald Reagan a few decades earlier. Gorbachev loved the joke and it was very well received. It was a bold risk, but a risk that I am glad I took. It was extremely well received, especially for an extremely conservative Evangelical Christian audience. Someone actually video taped it and loaded it to YouTube where the video went viral getting over 40,000 views in the first few weeks of being online.
You can watch the video here: http://YouTube.com/VitoGlazersCEO
I really enjoyed being in front of people and decided I wanted to get more into public speaking and spend less time behind the computer. I had the opportunity to go on the road and fill in for a friend in Portland, OR who was giving a seminar on Facebook Ads, Twitter Management and Email Marketing, all subjects I was comfortable teaching. I wanted to do more speaking about business and entrepreneurship but I figured Social Media speaking was a good way to get my foot in the door. I spent 3 days giving the seminar and it was well received.
Afterwards, I started realizing that the public speaking business may not be for me as it entailed a lot of selling from the stage, travel, training, competition, and other challenges that didn’t make it as appealing as I thought it would be. I went back to work but still was interested in doing something bigger. I continued to use my social media channels to project an image of myself that was attracting more business and continued to experience success.
One day around July 2013 I got an Email from a friend who informed me of an audition for a reality show about the Free Masons, a fraternity that I have been involved in for a few years, and a group that is consistently inappropriately portrayed in the media. I met with the casting director and we hit it off and I became involved in the show, my first audition and I was cast! It was very exciting. Even though it was documentary style reality TV, I could tell it was something I was going to really enjoy. We spent a week filming in Washington DC and around the East Coast and I had the time of my life.
A few months went by and the show never got picked up. I got discouraged and went back to work again. I started doing more and more social media consulting for companies in Los Angeles and tried to focus more on brands, celebs, creative projects and other things I found less boring than the products and clients I was serving at my network. I also started spending more time promoting “lifestyle” online through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine and a few other social media networks and was getting some positive and some controversial feedback. The Instagram account for this project was growing quickly and more and more people began hash tagging my brand concept; #CEOLIFE –
I came up with the idea to do a webseries called #CEOLIFE which was going to be loosely based on some of the more excited behind the scenes action that happened at my company and in my life. It was going to be a brief web series that focused on the ups and downs of the ad world and would be sponsored by companies within the industry. My plan was to target people on Facebook, put the episodes on YouTube, and build an Email list to tell people when new videos were out so they would watch them.
Around this same time I had just moved back to LA and a friend of mine knew I was trying to get into production and TV. The timing couldn’t have been better and I found out that a friend of his was casting for an actual Television show that was almost the exact same concept as my #CEOLIFE brand, except with a twist. The biggest challenge with #CEOLIFE was that some it could be construed as distasteful to make a web series that revolves around flaunting wealth, during a recession. The TV network’s concept was a very unique one which I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of. 6 millionaires, including myself, decided to go undercover to see if people treated us differently when we were out of our usual spoiled element. How the show turns out, you will have to see for yourself, but it is a really great concept.
None the less, I think it is important to acknowledge how the modern world is changing. If I hadn’t made an Instagram account and invented the uniuqe hashtag #CEOLIFE and shared it with people, it is doubtful that I would be coming out with my own Friday night prime time television show next month. Although many people in the film and television business still do not give social media its due credit, it is an undeniable force in bringing lost views from the web back to TV, or creating a hybrid web+television user experience.
I find it interesting that social media is such a key part to why I was able to achieve my goal of getting my own TV show. I plan on integrating everything I know about social media into helping ensure the show is a success. My strategy includes creating unique content like Memes, Images and articles about the show, and distributing them intelligently across multiple social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I am really excited to be finally moving into a new industry.
I wrote an official wrap up of my affiliate marketing career and explained my transition into television on the Internet Codex Blog linked here: http://internetcodex.com/vito-glazers-life-affiliate-marketing-cpa-marketing-television/
It feels very positive to move into a new field and catapult to a significantly higher than entry level position. Many people who want to do TV and Film start either as personal assistants or extras doing background work. I was lucky enough to go on one audition and get cast in a show. Although the pilot was never picked up, it gave me a lot of confidence. I went to my second audition and got cast again, and this time the show got picked up and is finally being released. I started promoting the show with the help of the network and already in the first week I received my first request to do a magazine interview and also received an invitation to possibly co-produce and star in another reality show about Men’s Fashion, another topic I frequently was bouncing around on my old #CEOLIVES account. Anybody who doesn’t believe in the power of social media, I remind of this story of how I went from selling ads to being in my own prime time TV show, all because of what I was posting on Instagram.
The show is a great concept and I am really grateful and excited for all the people who I know worked really hard to bring it to life. To help ensure the show’s success, I will be personally be creating unique content and promoting the show on Facebook. I will also be doing a live #TweetAlong with the show every Friday night 30 minutes before the show airs and 30 minutes after to engage fans and bridge the gap between internet uses and television watchers; my goal is to give viewers a way to have a personal connection with the show. I will also be posting behind the scenes footage and exclusive content on my new personal Instagram account. If you want to see behind the scenes make sure you follow me on IG= Instagram.com/Vito_Glazers