Social Media Coaching for Executives and CEO’s

Learn about social media management in one-on-one or team executive coaching. Social media has become the most exciting shift in communication that business is currently experiencing. This shift spans across generational boundaries and has made a more convenient lifestyle for people as the socialize on the internet. Over the past year I have had the privilege to coach executives from Mr Price, The South African Presidency, the ACDP, Southern Sun, Three Cities, TomorrowToday and a number of Non Profit Organisations. The key areas that we cover in social media coaching are: How to use social media platforms? How does this affect my business? How does this affect people? How can I make the work for me? What makes social media coaching sessions different from social media workshops. The coaching sessions encourage conversations that speak directly to your needs or concerns One-on-one coaching can be done on your schedule (we can even do them over Skype if its more convenient). For more information please contact

New Keynote on Social Media – Consumer 2.0

I am happy to announce that almost a years worth of ideas and concepts are neatly wrapped up in my latest keynote presentation. Consumer 2.0 The past ten years have seen the world move closer and closer to a digital existence. The boomer generation confidently lead to way by integrating our lives with electronic banking, business intranets and cellular phones while Generation X and Y have continued the journey into blogging, instant messaging and social media. This digital life has not replaced the real “person to person” lifestyle but rather enhanced life to be more convenient and dynamic. Electronic banking opened the door to convenient banking and social media made relationships easier to manage. Does this mean that everyone is moving to using these new technologies? In our experience no, instead people are adapting to those technologies that matter to them. This has lead to a more complex consumer who is using various communication tools in their own way. Making it more difficult to engage with the consumer – regardless of their generation, income level or intelligence. The level of a consumers digital savvy will depend on how and when you could connect with your consumers and whether they will appreciate your presence or not. At the end of the day you have four questions that need answering: How does this influence the way we do business? How has this changed the consumer? How does this influence your reputation or brand? What do we do now? Consumer 2.0 is a...

One-on-one Coaching with Southern Sun

SunSwop is an exclusive, private exchange facility developed by Southern Sun Lifestyle Resorts. All Southern Sun Lifestyle Resort owners gain automatic membership to SunSwop and are in the best position to take advantage of our preferential exchange opportunities. As a SunSwop member, you are entitled to request exchanges either in South Africa or Overseas, from a choice of over 2600 affiliated Resorts worldwide! The Sunswop and Southern Sun Brand Manager contacted us to start a series of Facebook coaching sessions on how to look after their marketing on the popular social network. At the end of the sessions they had this to say: “Mike is very passionate and professional. I found his work to be of a very high standard and personally gained valuable information through the coaching sessions we had.” To find out more about one-on-one social media coaching click here

How to get your company to buy into social media

Harvard Business Publishing has released a video that I think can be very valuable to most marketers in South Africa. The video offers seven steps that you can implement to show the value of social media to the management executives within your organisations. Often the task at hand in business is not showing the value of social media, but rather getting people to believe you and support you. Harvard Business offer these seven steps Start small Get an executive sponsor Line up other stakeholders ahead of time Move quickly Seek precedence Make friends Measure your success Check out the video to get the details. Through Mike Saunders Consulting we have successfully done executive level social media coaching to help executive business people understand the value of social media. We have seen many CEO’s and MD’s making big steps forward in social media once they have spent some time in our coaching sessions. These sessions simply outline the benefit and steps neccessary to implement a successful social media management strategy within your organisation. For more information please feel free to contact us.

Twitter launches Twitter Places

Twitter recently launched Twitter Places, a technology that allows users to tell Twitter where they are in the world. The benefit for the user is simple. Their tweet now has more context. From twitter: When turning to Twitter to keep up with the current world cup soccer game, it helps to know where a Tweet is coming from—is that person watching the game on TV or is he actually in the stadium? To help answer that question, we’re excited to announce Twitter Places on and Starting today, you can tag Tweets with specific places, including all World Cup stadiums in South Africa, and create new Twitter Places. You can also click a Twitter Place within a Tweet to see recent Tweets from a particular location. This also means that Twitter will now have similar attributes to the new social media startup Foursquare. Location is becoming an important part of online socilaising, which makes it no surprise that Twitter is now entering this space. Most people have come to realise that I only care about adoption when it comes to social media. There is no point marketing into a social media platform unless your public are using the network. Twitter has the potential to create serious competition for Foursquare here as they have a user base of about 11 million with 64 million tweets occuring each day. The latest stats I could find on Foursquare sat at 1.4 million users. However in true social networking spirit Foursquare and Twitter...

Coaching the South African Presidency in Social Media

Over the past few months The South African Presidency have been speaking about improving their communications to the South African public by getting involved in social media. In fact, I found out over twitter that this was a topic of conversation on 5fm a few days ago. I can confirm all the hype now after I sat with Mr. Vusi Mona, Deputy Director General: Head of Communications, from the South African Presidency. Over coffee at the King Shaka Airport we discussed the strategy to implement this new communication vehicle into the The Presidency. I found Mr. Mona to be incredibly insightful and passionate about exploring social media management. Mr. Mona had this to say about our consultation session together: “Thanks Mike. I derived lots of value from our discussion.” I am looking forward to serving our country in developing their new social media communication strategy.

Mike Saunders and Barrie Bramley talk about Social Media

I spent last week in Johannesburg and had a chance to chat to Barry Bramley about social media in South Africa. Barry has since put our conversation down on a podcast which captures a few clear points about social media management. Bearing in mind alot of the content here is just my opinion but we looked some case studies, why social media is important, how I launched my consultancy, the most important asset to social media and B2B marketing online. You can download/listen the podcast here

Should I focus on Facebook or Twitter for my business?

I am a fan of focus! It always gives you a better return for the same effort. Social media management is no different. When looking at Facebook and Twitter most people know that you can link Twitter and Facebook so that you only update one and the other updates automatically. I have warned people about linking Twitter and Facebook before and won’t go into it here. Assuming that you agree with my argument that you should treat Twitter and Facebook seperately, the question goes back to focus because if I am on Facebook – Twitter suffers and vice versa. According to an article in Hubspot Marketing a survey discovered that business to business companies benefit more from Twitter while products and services that are directed at the consumer can achieve better results on Facebook. This starts to make more sense when you look at the atmospheres that each network has. Twitter is more tolerant of business promotion because it is more of an information network than a social network. Business promotion is seen as more information and therefore if it is relevant to my need it is valuable to me. While Facebook adopts a purely social stance in the mind of its users. Think about a shopping center, its a social venue. People spend time in shopping centers when there are relaxing and taking time out of the normal work routine. However there is an incredible amount of business transaction that takes places in a shopping center and it mostly...

Coaching the Leadership Coach

Probably the most daunting experience I have ever had was to coach Keith Coats in Social Media. Keith is a well respected and seasoned leadership coach. So I was nervous that I would not hold up under the pressure. Well Keith turned out to be great to coach, he was very interested in learning and spent alot of time doing additional exercises between sessions to ensure that he really got the hang of Social Media. Here’s what Keith had to say: It wasn’t long into a meeting with Mike (one he had initiated and in which he approached me to do some mentoring with him) that I realized I had more to learn from him than the other way round! What followed has been an amazing journey as Mike has coached, mentored and supported me in exploring the world of social media technologies and most importantly, how to strategically connect the dots in this world. Mike’s skills sit not merely in his undoubted expertise in this area but also in his incredible ability to make sense of it for someone for whom it…well, doesn’t make sense. I have no hesitation in endorsing Mike as a Coach in this area…and have done so repeatedly. I wish more of the leaders with whom I engage would avail themselves of Mike’s expertise. Then again, I suspect many who work with and for these leaders, wish the same! Taking things further Keith is still in coaching as we have dived into further Social Media...

Team Training in Facebook and Twitter Marketing

The International Hotel School (IHS) hosted Mike Saunders for two days as he worked with IHS and members of the Three Cities Marketing team. The workshops took the candidates through a fun and strategic understanding of how to use Facebook and Twitter as a marketing vehicle. This is what some of the candidates had to say about the training: Mike, you are a star! Your social media training with us has been invaluable. Thank you – Ruth Paulsen (Head of Marketing – IHS) Thanks for the insight over the last 2 days. It was great fun and very exciting looking at the integration possibilities. Now we need to just get out there and use the technology – Jillian (HR Manager – IHS) Hi was a fantastic experience..i am so excited 2 lift off..i get bored and lose focus so quickly, but u had my attention the entire time..u brought my focus back 2 the wonderful world of online networking..tx a mil! – Carla Rossouw (Lecturer – IHS) Mike thank you, you have no idea how your workshop helped open my eyes to whats out there in terms of social media and the internet. Im so excited, I cant wait to see whatsinstore for IHS. – Neliswa Sithole (Consultant – International Hotel School)

One-on-one Social Media Coaching

“Ever stood facing the cold pool water when all that stood before you and the shock of the cold water was the commitment to jump? Of course you have. And your hesitancy was most likely being subjected to the taunting of kids already in the pool. Then you jump and there is a split second of mid-air realization that there is no going back before you are immersed in the ice-cold water. I have just jumped. I have just had my first coaching session in Social Media.” – Keith Coats, Leadership Expert“ Like Keith many people have recognised that they need to learn and understand this new realm of social media. You can attend all the courses you like on this topic but nothing will entrench the topic in your mind like one-on-one coaching will. These one-on-one meetings are a an opportunity to have your questions answered while following a predetermined curriculum to ensure that you gain a complete understanding of social media. So if you would like to know more about facebook, linkedin, twitter, MXit, blogging, websites, mobile media, internet advertising, online marketing and promoting yourself online please contact me for more information. You can see a few articles about some people who have gone through this type on one-on-one coaching here

Peter Van Niekerk learns all about Social Media

Peter is a local and international conference speaker, speaking mainly in Africa, Europe and the USA. He has recently seen the need to get on top of social media in order to get his message out to the people who have asked to hear more from him. Peter sends out devotional thoughts aimed at challenging the lives of christian believers. I took Peter through a series of one-on-one courses where we dealt with the topics of social media, the internet and it’s anthropological attributes. I thoughoughly enjoyed our conversations as Peter has a very broad understanding of society and how people interact. We had a great time drawing correlations to what I have experienced in my research online. Peter had this to say about the coaching programme: Hi Mike, Thought I would just give you some feed back from my experience of you coaching a new boy on the block concerning facebook and twitter. I really enjoyed the manner in which you pointed out line upon line how best for me to approach these two unknown opportunities. It was not only the information you imparted to me that has been hugely helpful, but I also enjoyed the dialogue we had, where you spoke into the huge space of my ignorance concerning other aspects of social networking. As this is a totally new field for me, my biggest problem has been the time factor, where do I fit this all in? I feel much more competent now in using these two...

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