The Screaming Lady started off as a sort of private water cooler where I’d go with the ladies in the novel I am writing to take a work break. It was part of a deal my husband/editor/compass requested if I was to leave my communications consultancy and enter a two-year (he thought one) hermitage, knowing where the media world was headed and why I needed to keep in touch with it. Blogging was fits and starts of mostly ramblings on nature, travel, kids and served as a kind of reverse thermometer for the novel’s progress. That is, the more my three or four readers got from the blog, the less the novel was getting out of me. Extrapolate that to dabblings in Facebook and a community network I created, a few blogs whipped up for friends and family, video projects that made it all so much more fun, Flickr, Picassa, and LinkedIN, and well, you get it. Then, last February, when economic forces forced me out of creative self-indulgence, Screaming Lady the blog swapped sweat pants for slacks and set about morphing into a portfolio of health care writing. She quickly joined Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIN accounts where all the other communications strategists already were social marketing away to their social networks in the social media space.
Screaming Lady has evolved again as the buds of business have begun to break, her boots are getting muddy, and tilling the social media soil calls for a more rugged pair of work pants. The metaphor trail intentionally veers to farming references here for a reason: At the beginning of 2010, the Lady begins a year-long social media science experiment taking a small pastured egg and chicken farm in Solano County, California, into marketing orbit. Soul Food Farms and I are working in trade: owner farmer Alexis Koefoed can begin marketing her pastured eggs and chickens, her community service agriculture program (CSA), and cooking school, and I get to tame the social media dervish to a local scale, where the analytics point directly to the communications efforts, and we can draw some straightforward ROI from it. Together with a few colleagues, advisers, and social media gurus (including aforementioned compass), we’ll start with the bare essentials, move to some simple basics, and expand to more creative tools and techniques. We’ll seek advice, try some moves, switch gears if they don’t work – all in a very public blog (a temporary detour from ScreamingLady) that will expose the challenges and test the promises we have all come to know as the holy grail of new media marketing.
We also hope to get some fresh and tasty eggs and chicken out of the deal.