A Sleepy Week at the Legislature on Tonight’s Arkansas Week

I’m back on AETN’s “Arkansas Week” at 8 p.m. tonight along with the Associated Press’ Andrew DeMillo and KUAR’s Kelly MacNeil. We’ll go over the week that was at the General Assembly, including no raises for judges and lawyers, an attempt to reign in independent state agencies and redistricting. We’ll also go over the Arkansas delegation’s vote to repeal Obama health care and major news from Tyson Foods Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Got a big night ahead? Watch it right now online.

Dow Plunges Nearly 1,000 Points, Recovers, on Fears About Greek Debt

Dow Jones Industrial Average

So, it was that kind of a day.

Developing here:

NEW YORK – Stocks plunged Thursday as investors succumbed to fears that Greece’s debt problems would halt the global economic recovery. The Dow Jones industrials slid almost 1,000 points before recovering to a loss of 465.



Like everyone else, Arkansas stocks were taken on a wild ride. Was anyone able to snap up any bargains?

A sample below:

Windstream Corp.

Windstream Corp.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Murphy Oil Corp.

Murphy Oil Corp.

Tyson Foods Inc.

Tyson Foods Inc.

Dillard's Inc.

Dillard's Inc.

(Via Yahoo! Finance)

Oil Settles Near $77 As Market Plunges

Europe Faces Debt Contagion Fear

Video: Jim Cramer, CNBC react

UPDATE: Ed Nicholson’s BlogWell Presentation

Update: Thanks to Phil Neiman at GasPedal for forwarding video of the presentation. More BlogWell vids here.

Original post:

Ed Nicholson of Tyson Foods, who blogged here last month about his experiences at the BlogWell conference in New York City, has his presentation at the conference posted at the BlogWell site. We’ve embedded it above.

The slideshow talks about how major companies can use social media for specific goals. Nicholson, director of Tyson Foods’ community and public relations, talks about how the meat processor has used blogs, Flickr, YouTube and Twitter toward its hunger relief goals. And if offers several tips about what companies must do to use social media properly. You don’t simply go set up a Twitter account — there must be a larger strategy in place, ways to accurately measure success and a willingness to commit to the two-way street that is social media.

But we’ll let Nicholson do the talking. Click to read slides from his presentation above. And click here and here to read his posts for this blog on BlogWell.

(Thanks to Nicholson and Clark for the heads up.)

Social Media & Business Case Studies: Coke, GE & Nokia (Business and Social Media, Part III)

Ed Nicholson, director of community and public relations for Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale, attended the BlogWell conference last week in New York City.

In Part III of our three-part series on business and social media, Nicholson shares info from three business and social media case studies featuring Coca-Cola, General Electric and Nokia.

By Ed Nicholson
I saw three other presentations at this event: GE, Nokia and Coke. Here are some highlights from each:

Coke empowers employees around the world to monitor mentions of its brand within the social Web, which can number in the millions per month, ranging from casual (“My office is two doors past the Coke machine”) to direct (“I really love this Coke Zero”).

The company is also developing a “social media certification” program for its employees who might create content about the brand. And the program stresses disclosure and the evergreen nature of the Web.

A Coke Facebook fan page with 3.4 million members was started and is run by two people who are not Coke employees. For a while, the company took ownership of the page, but soon realized its purposes were better served if it were run as it was originally started.

(After the jump, General Electric, Nokia and the Mayo Clinic.)

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Coming Soon: More Guest Blogger Goodness

Isn’t this site so much better when someone besides me is blogging? Yep, I think so too!

So far this week, we’ve gotten guest blogger reports on business and social media from Bryan Jones of CJRW and Ed Nicholson of Tyson Foods. Tomorrow, we’ll hear from Nicholson on how some major national companies are using social media in business, wrapping up our three-part series on the topic. Thanks to both of these guys for their valuable contributions.

And later this week, we’ll hear from Little Rock PR guru Natalie Ghidotti of Ghidotti Communications, who’ll tell us what she learned about “mom blogs” and business at this week’s Mind of Moms summit in northwest Arkansas. We’re looking forward to what caught her eyes and ears that event, which was attended by 150 people.

(Until we get Natalie’s report, you can check out this video report on the conference here from KNWA in northwest Arkansas.)

Stay tuned. Much more to come this week.

What Companies Should Expect When Using Social Media (Business and Social Media, Part II)

Ed Nicholson, director of community and public relations for Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale, attended the BlogWell conference last week in New York City.

In Part II of our three-part series on business and social media, Nicholson tells us what big lessons he learned from the conference about how businesses should use social media and what issues companies will face when entering the social media arena.

By Ed Nicholson
This was the third BlogWell conference I’ve attended.

The overarching takeaway for me, after hearing a number of presentations at the three events, is that there’s an incredible diversity of ways organizations are engaged in the social Web. Each organization needs to find the appropriate way to use the tools.

In the best examples, social networking strategy is built on top of an effective overall communications strategy. The declaration, “We need a Facebook page, a Twitter account and a blog!” should be followed by the question, “Toward what objective?” The Web landscape is littered with abandoned vehicles for which there was no clear destination at the start of the journey.

ROI and Disclosure
There’s an enormous interest in how we measure and derive ROI from social media engagement. While there are some widely-used tools (some of which might come at a fairly steep price), it’s generally agreed that the science for doing this has not matured. Of course, there’s also the growing sentiment that the way we’ve always measured traditional media ROI might need an overhaul in the “Age of Conversation.”

Disclosure is also a universal best practice. Andy Sernovitz, founder of the Blog Council, gives an excellent talk at each of the BlogWell events on the subject. Whether one is commenting on a blog post, sponsoring blog coverage, managing a Twitter account, or working on behalf of the company in any other online capacity, full disclosure and transparency is always the best policy. The companies who have adopted social media engagement guidelines and policies for their employees always make it primary component.

Part of the Discussion
If there’s any passion around your brand (and aren’t we all looking for that?), conversations and communities will arise, whether the company is an active participant or not. Those conversations can sometimes be messy and uncomfortable for the brand, but most companies agree they’d rather play a role in hosting them themselves.

(Part II of III. Tomorrow, Nicholson shares info from three business and social media case studies featuring Coca-Cola, General Electric and Nokia.)

What Companies Want to Know About Social Media (Business and Social Media, Part I)

Bryan Jones, director of interactive services for CJRW of Little Rock, attended the BlogWell conference last week in New York City.

In Part I of our three-part series on business and social media, Jones tells us why BlogWell is an important conference for him and what businesses what to know about social media.

By Bryan Jones

(Photo: Bryan Jones)

(Photo: Bryan Jones)

Why I Went
There are interactive/social media conferences on a monthly basis. They all have their own value proposition and unique personality. I need to spend my time working and not conferencing, so I have to be picky about which conferences to attend.

For my needs, Austin, Texas’ South-by-Southwest (SXSW) and BlogWell make the most sense. The difference between the two is:
– SXSW is all about pushing the limits of interactive technology/communication/design.
– BlogWell is all about the social media best practices of large corporations.

As an Interactive designer/strategist, I need to be intimately involved in both sets of issues because my clients need that from me. On a national level, I’m working on social media projects for JC Penney, Toyota and Tyson Foods. Locally, I’m working with the Komen Arkansas Race for the Cure, Gaston’s Resort, elected officials and others.

Each of the projects have their own unique objectives and needs. These conferences keep me informed and connected.

Questions From Attendees
Judging from the questions asked during BlogWell sessions, here is what attendees wanted to gain from the conference:

– Where does social media fall: marketing, public relations or interactive?
– What corporate policies for employees do you have in place for social media?
– For publicly traded companies, where is the line crossed between social media and insider training?
– How involved is your legal department in your social media communications?
– How do you measure your investment in social media?

(Part I of III. Tomorrow, Ed Nicholson of Tyson Foods shares what companies should expect when using social media.)

After the jump, Twitter accounts for outstanding presenters at BlogWell.

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