In older days, I would Google myself to see how I surfaced. That’s not just an ego thing — I found many strange things attributed to me. I research myself, or at least my professional reach.
In current days, there are tools that help me “research myself” using visualization tools.
I’m sharing two here:
InMaps from LinkedIn Labs
(revision: This tool is no longer available.)
I have a lot of LinkedIn connections. LinkedIn says 500+; it is a lot more than that.
LinkedIn Labs provides Inmaps, an intriguing tool to visually map the inter-connectivity of your Connections. It gives you a color coded interconnected visual that you need to figure the connections out for yourself.
Here is mine, updated to today:
The labels on the bottom left are provided by color code, and you can roll over each of the dots to see who each person is. You then can extrapolate for yourself the nature of the connections that are influencing the color codes. The Green on the bottom left, for example, are many of my friends from Fielding Graduate University in educational research, who are some distance away from my Blue friends on the bottom right, who mostly are digital media professional acquaintances from the past decade plus. LinkedIn has a good video from 2011 on how to use this tool on YouTube here.
There are many tools to look at Twitter. I have (at least) two Twitter “handles”: @maremel and @gigijohnson. I try to use @maremel for industry trend information and new Maremel programs and projects. @gigijohnson, on the other hand, is for more perspective comments. I have faded with both into retweeting articles I enjoy, and I can see that in my own casual observation.
SocialBro lets me take this a little further. I can break my Twitter followers into a wide variety of categories, including how often they Tweet and how stale their Tweets are or how many influencers follow them. Here’s a partial visualization of Twitter followers with larger followings who follow @maremel, as well as below that a tag cloud of what types of words Followers use in their bios:
I pay for the service about $7/month; price is related to the volume of followers you are analyzing. It also can track the overlap between your followers and other third-party accounts. I use the tool to analyze similar companies to various clients and partners to see who are combined influencers and who might be intriguing to start to follow or converse with in the Twittersphere.
What other visualization tools do you use to spy on your social self?
Dr. Gigi Johnson shared five (5) steps to both grow and simplify how we can use abundant data to make better daily and strategic decisions. She addressed questions such as: How can I use the data that I can get now at a reasonable price with reasonable use of time to help my work thrive? How can I find ways to SAVE time and energy around data? How can I have the right data when I need it for decisions? and Can I create systems and structures to make this daunting task a little simpler?
We’re building new short-form classes here at the Maremel Institute (and join our email list to find out more about the upcoming schedule). One that so far is in high demand is on Social Listening, the arts of using social media for business intelligence not just on big trends, but also on where unique conversations are going on that align with your work and message.
We tend to start at the middle when sometimes we need to start at the beginning.
Some of us at Maremel have been setting a non-profit organization up for cloud-based collaboration. To get them all on the same page, we helped them move their shared work documents to Google Docs.
Movement screeched to a halt. Quite a few group members needed a tutorial-style boost into Google Docs — just the basics to get started — though did not raise their hand directly that they didn’t understand the basics.
This need prompted us to return to the web for inspiration. We took a look at the currently available tools online to understand Google Docs from scratch. We hope this might be helpful for some folks who might not be comfortable otherwise getting started by trial and error.