The Pros and Cons of Social Media is sort of a trick title, if you’re looking to have me denounce the use of social media as a means to an end for building brands, and ultimately adding to a person’s finances. That’s not what this story is about.

The Real “Cons” of Social Media

The “cons” of social media are the bad guys out there, those who are disrupting our right to privacy.

  • Thanks Edward Snowden, a real hero, we’re more enlightened.
  • And, the con knuckleheads who hack into our Websites, causing havoc and endless amounts of hours that Webmasters and techies have to spend untangling the messes created within our code… please get a real job. Time is money, and you’re costing us. You probably don’t care, but we have to hire someone to untangle that ball of yarn you’ve strewn all over the back end of our sites. You’ve created messes, like kids gone wild with granny’s basket of yarn, who have created “spider webs all over the house.”

Every time hacking happens, I ask Jose, “What is motivating these jerks to get into the back end of my site?” And he patiently continues to tell me, “To plant things that will get into other people’s computers, so that they find user names and passwords for credit cards. “Ah,” I always say. It all begins with, “Jose, my site is down again!”

The Pros of Social Media

  • 22 years ago, I moved to California from Maine, and began my wine career in March of 1993. (December 29, 1992)
    • A very small number of people knew I was alive. What I had to say about wine and the wine business meant almost nothing to anyone.
  • Nearly 10 years later, I became a wine marketing/PR consultant, launching Diaz Communications. By then, enough people knew me, because I had built some credibility. But it was still limited exposure. (August 13, 2001)
  • Nine (9) years ago and 13 years after getting into the wine business,  I launched my wine blog (December 29, 2005).
    • Today, with this story, I’ve written exactly 1,700 stories, besides all of the ones already in print.
    • My “brand” has greatly increased. Hard work is at the heart of it; social media is at the soul of it.

Having our own wine PR and marketing company has brought visibility to who Jose and I are; but, it’s having my wine blog and being on Facebook that has stretched and magnetized who I am as a brand. It’s a result of my wine blog that when I first touched down in Europe for the European Wine Bloggers Conference… thinking that NO ONE in Europe knew me… I entered the hotel and heard, “Hello, Jo Diaz!” “Are you kidding me,” I thought and turned to see Andre Ribeirinho, a fellow Portuguese wine blogger.

Today, it’s a very small world, and the network of who we all are has intensified with social media. I now communicate with people from all over the word… as do you, most likely. I’ve got clients that have come to me because of my blog… (And, I’m not alone with this one, I know.) They like my writing and hire me to write for them. Proof? Yeah, it’s like that. But… here’s some proof of social media successfully increasing someone else’s coffers from his acquired social media visibility, and it’s very creative…

Alder Yarrow of Vinography

When he first started blogging, there was a buzz around his website, called Vinography. To even find the name of who was writing this blog took all of my dig deeper skills. He protected who he was and what he was doing… I don’t know if it was deliberate or possible marketing naïveté. I just know it took an inordinate amount of time to get to the bottom of who was writing that wine blog.

The Essence of Wine Book Project by Alder Yarrow — Kickstarter

Go Alder… This is what proactive Social Media has delivered, and I’m going to borrow this information from his site, because I ‘m not going to reinvent this perfect wheel.

A coffee table book of amazing photographs about the flavors and aromas that make wine magical. With wine recommendations and essays.

This book is unlike any wine book ever produced. It is first an art book — an incredible collection of intimate images and accompanying prose that celebrate the different individual flavors and aromas found in wine. It is also an educational book and a wine guide, directing readers to easily findable wines that can broaden their horizons as wine drinkers.

The book will appeal to anyone who enjoys indulging their senses, from the foodie who wants a wine book that doesn’t read like a dictionary, to the wine novice looking to educate their palate. Even the wine connoisseur will return again and again to savor the beauty of these images with wine glass in hand and the book in their lap.

Pre-order this high-quality, 150-page hardcover book today with a backing pledge of $70 or more. If you want to give the book as a gift for the holidays, I’ll send you a nice PDF card you can give to recipients while they wait for their book….

Where did the idea for this book come from?

I’ve been writing about wine professionally for ten years on my James Beard Award Nominated blog, Vinography.Com.

For more on this project, I encourage you to go to Alder’s link page [No longer relevant.]. You still have time to back his project, As I write this, he’s got 161 committed backers and he has $21,700 pledged of his $18,000 goal… with 46 hours to go for his pledges. You still have time to get into this deal, because tomorrow, when I launch this story, time will not have run out, yet. His levels of pledges give his backers certain things… Examples (you really need to go see the full range of benefits):

  • $10: Alder’s eternal thanks and a laminated wallet-size version of his Aroma Card Wine Tasting Tool.
  • $340 or more: up to $649, five copies of the Essence of Wine, name listed in acknowledgements, invited to his launch party, books signed, if you’d like.
  • $3,500 or more: Six signed copies of the book, name listed in acknowledgements, custom day-long wine tour for six people in Sonoma or Napa,  personally guided and tailored to your taste by Alder ($5,000 value). Transportation from San Francisco is included, meals are not.

This is a win-win, wine-wine situation, and Alder he can THANK social media for creating his visibility. It’s his ability to be intuitive that’s going to be making money, but without the credibility he’s created through his blogging, this project would NOT be getting off the ground… Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa “Clause.”