I worked in the financial industry for twelve years, the last six of which were spent marketing investment advisory services to, and providing support for, corporate and government pension and profit sharing plans. My clients included the City of Los Angeles, the States of Alaska and New Hampshire, and companies like Getty Oil, Warner-Lambert (now Pfizer) and Monsanto. I left Wall Street in 1985 to become a full time homemaker and homeschooling mom.
Thank God. I don’t know if I am allowed to say “Wall Street” out loud any more.
I am an “early adopter” of technology. Introduced to an early incarnation of the internet in the 1970’s via dot-matrix terminal and 300 baud acoustic coupler, I made the transition easily to home computers in about 1985. One of AOL’s first 100,000 subscribers and one of Paypal’s first 10,000 members, when I first ventured online, Yahoo was “Jerry’s Guide to the World Wide Web”, there was no Amazon.com or eBay, and there were less than 35,000 business websites worldwide. I was also banking online and shopping with digital currencies, downloading videos, commenting on “weblogs” and forums and instant messaging before email became fully mainstream.
By 1997, I taught myself some HTML and went on to build and manage a primitive, but family-friendly Godzilla fan site for my then 6-year-old son, which I monetized with affiliate programs from Barnes and Noble, Reel.com and eToys. The site ran for almost six years and was internationally known. And the name by which I am still known online, “momzilla54,” originated during that stint as webmaster of Domzilla’s Godzilla Page so long ago.
So are you shocked that I was also an early adopter of social media marketing? I’ve been blogging about mixing home business and homeschooling since 1996, and was also among the early users of both Facebook and Twitter. I had the privilege of participating in a six month social media mentoring and certification course taught by Mari Smith, and became a Certified Social Media Specialist in the fall of 2009. I was also a founding member of the International Social Media Association (ISMA), which was dissolved by its founders in May of 2010. While I suppose “certification” in any field describes a fixed point in time in which you were tested and found to be proficient in a certain discipline, trying to maintain a certification in social media is like trying to tame the Wild West. There are not enough hours in a day to service clients, blog, maintain my own social presence AND stay current with every new Facebook wrinkle devised by Mark Zuckerberg.
With almost 15 years experience in direct sales and internet marketing, I now teach entrepreneurs and small businesses how to translate their offline advertising to online media, and dominate their local market niche.
My specialty is strategy, but I also manage social media accounts. I know, I know. That runs counter to what social media is supposed to be about. But some people would rather pay me to do it than to do it themselves. This is where my multiple personalities come in handy.