The Life of a Creator

(This post is the 5th and final segment of a five part series about participation in the world of Social Media)

As someone who’s made it my life’s work to create things, I often wonder:

  • Will anyone care about what I am creating?
  • Does my creation matter?
  • Will anyone read my blog, watch my show, join my community, buy my service, appreciate my design, listen to my speech, share, comment, or care?
  • What happens if I invest an extraordinary amount of time into something and it fails?

Creators live in a difficult position.  If they invest their life into something that fails, they are considered a failure by many.  Creators and their creations are often grouped together.

Creators must be prepared to be a failure.

Think of the inventors, writers, designers, and artists who spent their life working on their creation, only to come up short.  Just think about all the developers that developed something that no one used, bought, or shared. For every Facebook, there are hundreds of social websites like Legacy 110.

There is great personal risk to any creator.

As I’ve said many times, there is a place for bravery in a modern world.  Just look at the creative process.  If no one was brave enough to risk total failure, we’d have no internet, no computers, no electricity.

Someone had to risk wasting their life.

It’s the only one of the 4 C’s of Social Media that regularly faces a do or die situation. If consumers don’t like what they consume (fail), they can easily find something else. If curators share something unpopular (fail), they can move on quickly to share something new.  There is an unlimited supply of things out there to consume or share.

Creating just isn’t that simple.

If you’ve ever blogged, recorded, designed, engineered, written a book, or given a speech, you know what I’m talking about.  It isn’t easy to create  something truly new.  The bigger and better the creation, the larger the risk.  That’s why so many people avoid beginning the journey.

So what makes people create?  Natural curiosity?  An accident?  Insanity?  The potential payoff?

I don’t know.

What I do know is that I’m truly thankful for those who invented the telecommunications that connect me to you, the computer I’m using right now, the software that makes it run, and the coffee that I’m enjoying right now.  All of these things had to be created and they truly enrich my life.  And so do the books, movies, and blogs that I consume each day.

I am thankful for the Creators in my life.

However, creators are not islands, they can not exist alone.  They need curators to share their work and curators need consumers to make their curation matter.   We are all creators, curators, and consumers in some way, and we all need each other to make this social web work.

Thanks for creating, sharing, and reading.  Because of you, we are all better off.

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Hug a Social Media Curator!

(This post is the 4th part of a five part series about participation in the world of Social Media)

It’s a zoo out there!

I’ve got 45,000 unread emails, 1,750 unread notices in facebook, and countless tweets that come flying by me each day.

The Social Web is a crazy place.  Everywhere you look, “Creators” are busy creating content and “Consumers” are seeking the latest and greatest.  Who makes it all work?

The Social Media Curator.

The word Curator normally applies to a museum executive or someone who manages a collection.  Going back to when I studied Latin, it comes from the word cūrā, meaning to care for or attend to.

Social Media Curators care for and attend to the best of the Social Web.  They save us all time.  They make Web 2.0 worthwhile.

It’s time to hug a social media Curator!

When others click away from something they like and move on, the Curators among us share it, retweet it, bookmark it, list it, or forward it.  When they find people that serve niches, they follow them, list them, and introduce them to the world.

They are the only reason that my twitter stream and Flipboard app actually work. (hint, if you don’t “get” twitter, it’s because you don’t know any curators)

Without Curators, we are stuck digging through the billions of updates each month just to find something worth reading (besides family or celebrity updates).  With curators, the best of the best in our field rises to the top.

It’s time to thank the curators!

Have a great night,

Aaron@Biebert

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Here are some different types of curators I’ve relied on.  Who are yours?  (Please share and I’ll check them out)

Like this article?  Check out  “Web 2.0 – Why Sharing is Caring”  or subscribe to “Thoughts from an 8pm Warrior” via email

6 Ways to Efficiently Consume Social Media

(This post is the 3nd in a five part series about participation in the world of Social Media)

So you’ve decided to dive into the world of Social Media?

Welcome!

Now comes the hard part.  Just check out these stats:

  • 30,000,000,000 items are shared each month on Facebook (official Facebook stats)
  • 2,890,000,000 tweets are posted on Twitter each month (official Twitter stats)
  • 200,000,000+ blogs had been started by 2009, with many more added each day (Technorati)
  • More written information was created in the last 48 hours than from the beginning of time to the year 2000 combined (Google)

So what is a social media consumer to do?

Below are some of the great tools out there to efficiently organize and screen information that’s flying at you.

1) Flipboard

If you have an iPad, you need Flipboard.  If you don’t have an iPad, you need to get one.  This app is that great!

Basically it takes your news feed from Twitter or Facebook and turns it into your very own social magazine!  It adds visual appeal and is easy to get right to the good stuff.  Apple named it their app of the year, and it is my #1 tool for consuming (and curating) great content

2) Summify

No matter what way you read social media posts, Summify can help you.  Lisa Sunbury has been using it and absolutely loves  how you’re able to have up to four emails sent per day, containing the top 5 stories in your main areas of interest.

3) Paper.li

Twice a day I publish the 8pm Warrior Digest of content shared by my favorite leaders.  You can subscribe to it and it will send the digest to your email.  I know that others have similar papers too.

4) Curators

I recommend that you seek out and follow Curators who will help filter the good stuff and share it with you.  There are literally thousands of people who spend much of their day sharing the best content that they can find.  If you are looking for some great ones, check with Robert Caruso for his recommendations.  His Bundlepost technology allows people to share even more content in a well organized way, so he knows the best curators on Earth.

5) Google Reader

If you like to read blogs, but have a hard time organizing them, then RSS and Google Reader might be for you.  Many people still don’t know what RSS is, so here’s a good guide to both Google Reader and RSS.

If you’re using a different reader, check out other options here on the 8pm Warrior RSS feed.

6) Social Bookmarking Sites:

These top sites use the collective power of many curators to help you find the best content on the internet.

I hope these 6 methods of screening and consuming information will help you efficiently wade through the thousands of social media updates flying your way each day.  If you have any that I missed, post a comment below.

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert

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