Blog Birthday

Today we celebrate the second birthday of this blog. I don’t know how big the “we” doing the celebrating is, but it has definitely grown in the last year.

When I started it as “Lines from Lee” with these three posts on July 30, 2006 I had no idea what a great adventure I had begun. In fact, it was more than a month before I wrote another one. But by the end of September I had pretty much decided to go for it. I described the first full year a year ago today with this post: Looking Back: One Year of Blogging, which closed with this:

It’s been a great year of learning, and while I’ve invested some time, the financial cost has been zero.

Where else but the blogosphere can you learn so much at no cost?

I’m looking forward to continuing my education!

Little did I know that just a few months later I would become Chancellor of an on-line institution of higher education!

In that last year (and particularly in the six months since Lines from Lee became Social Media University, Global – SMUG), traffic has increased by about 600 percent. The number of RSS subscribers is up 800 percent. And we have 134 members of our SMUG Facebook group. This is my 530th post over two years, and Akismet has spared me nearly 50,000 spam comments. Thank you, WordPress!

While in last year’s wrap-up I highlighted some specific posts, this year I would just direct you to my Rebranding the Blog post and others from January. They describe what we’re all about at SMUG:

using free or ridiculously cheap social media tools

to learn how to

use free or ridiculously cheap social media tools

for real business/work-related projects and for more in-depth relationships with key stakeholders.

But as I think about it, there have been a few other key highlights I should mention:

My 12-Step Social Media Program for PR Professionals was a precursor for SMUG, in that its popularity helped me see the need for an orderly, step-by-step introduction to social media. And while I’m not aware of the post being translated into any other languages, it has been edited and adapted for publication in magazines or newsletters for association Executives and veterinarians.

Other posts and pages that have gotten significant traffic include:

But the best part of blogging has been the people I’ve met through this journey. Among those I’ve gotten to know a bit without meeting face-to-face (yet) are Ben Martin, Kelsey Thompson, Scott Meis (a Chicago snowstorm prevented our meeting), Brycie Jones, Steve Levine, Sidney Williams, Toby Palmer, Jennifer Texada, Hilary Marsh, Rick Sauter, Aruni, and Peggy Hoffman. I hope that in the coming year they’ll become in-person acquaintances, like Chris Heuer, Rick Short, Katie Paine, Chris Martin, Tim Collins, Susannah Patton, Hillary Weber, Scott Hensley, Kevin Hoffberg, Michael Masnick, Bonnie Sashin, Sally Falkow, Jeremiah, Erik Giberti, Lee Odden, Charlene Li, Dennis McDonald, Jim Long, Sallie B, Michael Brito, Andy Sernovitz, Adam Brown, Michael Rubin, Kami Huyse, Chuck Hester, Paula Cassin, and many others. Daniel Rothamel is an in-between case: I haven’t met him, but we did talk via Skype videoconference.

These are just a few of the folks with whom I’ve gotten connected over the last year or so, and they all have enriched my life. So have the scores of additional people I’ve met through conferences, or virtually through Twitter, blog comments or the SMUG Student Union. For those whose names I should have mentioned but didn’t, please just chalk it up to the lateness of the hour.

And of course, Facebook has helped me reconnect with many friends from the foggy, distant past.

If you haven’t taken the social media plunge, I encourage you to immerse yourself. To borrow a phrase I heard someone use in the last few months to close an on-line video:

“If you enjoyed it half as much as me, that means I enjoyed it twice as much as you.”

But even if your social media enjoyment is 10 percent of what mine has been, you’ll find it well worth the effort. And you could start by clicking any of the links above, which would introduce you to an interesting person. These are can’t miss recommendations.

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Author: Lee Aase

Married father of six and grandfather of seven, and the Chancellor of SMUG - Social Media University, Global. By day I'm the Director of the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network. Whatever I say here is my personal opinion, and doesn't reflect the positions of my employer.

0 thoughts on “Blog Birthday”

  1. Lee,
    You provide inspiration and encouragement on a daily basis to those of us working to use and understand social media, decide which social media serve our purposes, and then educate our constituents on the very real benefits of joining the groundswell. Thanks for sharing your knowledge so generously.

  2. Congratulations, Lee!

    You have certainly gone well beyond “embracing” powerful ideas and tools – you have succeeded with them. Your success includes learning as well as achieving. On top of building your organization’s brand you have clearly driven energy, interest, attention, contacts, opportunities for exposure and much more to your business.

    You are a tremendous example of how hard work, risk taking, and calculated/educated efforts can pay outrageous rewards.

    It is an education to watch you work and a pleasure to be yuor friend.

  3. Congrats Lee, and thanks for taking the time to do this. I know what an undertaking it is to keep it going. You have been a big inspiration to development of our social media program, and me personally.

    Thanks for showing us all how to do it the right way!

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