This digital gift came as an afterthought. – SCN Encourager 12/18/2013

Not every social media project involves hours of planning.

Some just happen… and you have to be lucky enough to snag ’em when they pop up.

This was definitely the case when my superintendent (Brian Davis, Holland MI) invited four of our kindergartners two weeks ago to decorate a Christmas tree in our Admin Building.

The purpose was to get a good photo or two for Brian’s Christmas card; the one he signs and sends out to a broad-based list of community members, volunteers, and staff.

I’d like to say we always get a great photo for the card every year, but I can’t.

It wouldn’t be true.

The more accurate statement would be “THEY always get a great photo for the card…”

You see, I had nothing to do with it.

For me, there is no “we.”

Because the “helper mom” who helps me coordinate this project every year – by lining up the kindergartners with the principal, getting the props and outfits, and assisting the photographer – won’t even let me within 100 yards (aka 30 sleigh lengths) of the actual photo session.

Her name is Nancy and I think the world of her.

My superintendent does, too.

But I also think she likes to work with me in the same way my wife likes to shop with me — by cell phone!

I’m an seasoned school communicator, so I’m confident I could help them considerably if they gave me the chance.

But they’ll never appreciate the full potential of my input since they rarely pick up my calls.

Xmas2013BDInsideTangledBut hey! This year’s card was another winner.

We got a nice “decorating the tree” photo for the front.

And we captured the photo on the left for the inside flap of the card to fit our message, “Wishing you a tangle-free holiday!”

Of course, it helps to have a superintendent who is a unique blend of John Dewey, Robert Marzano, and P.T. Barnum.

He has a blast with the kids while the photographer just clicks away… or so I’ve been told.

Some year I’m going to dress up like Santa and just show up.

Then let Nancy try to keep me off the premises.

She wouldn’t prevent excited kindergartners from engaging with Jolly Ol’ Saint Nick, would she?

Anyway, after the photo shoot, the photographer picked up his video camera and Brian pulled the kids together to record a quick Christmas greeting of some kind just for the heck of it.

The result is here for you to see.

It’s now attracting a nice reaction in our district.

And the fact that this video is only 10 seconds long is further proof that I had nothing to do with it.

The reason I’m sharing this with you today is because of Gary Vaynerchuk’s bestseller “Jab. Jab. Jab. Right Hook.” – the one I wrote about in an Encourager last week.

He believes that the best communicators in 2014 will be those who can create “highly visible micro content.”

I skipped mentioning this because I wasn’t sure how to even describe what Vaynerchuk meant.

But now I don’t have to describe it. I have a 10 second video to show you.

You’ll get the idea right away, I’m sure – even if I was a bit slow to catch on myself.

However, I’m getting there.

And one of these years, Nancy is going to allow me in the room!

Tom Page, SCN
carTues 121713






Highly visible micro content

annual christmas card image

Brian’s Ho-Ho-NO message  here tis

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