Category Archives: Adventures in Consulting

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My Experience Working With Venafi At The RSA Conference

Last week I had the the opportunity to work with a Venafi, a high tech security company at the RSA Conference.  I helped them promote and raise brand awareness with conference attendees and I had a fabulous time doing it!

I co-hosted a Jeopardy style game show booth with Venafi’s senior sales engineer, Chris Neely, from the UK.  We led an audience of 25-30 people through Jeopardy questions on the management of enterprise keys and certificates (EKCM), giving away Kindle Fires to the winners of each session.  We knocked about 40 sessions over four days, doing about two an hour.

The booth was awesome!  It shot up about sixty feet with two large monitors for the questions and each audience member received a wireless voting device.  This was the brainchild of an amazing event and marketing firm called Eventige.  They contacted me after finding my blog and YouTube videos of work I’d done with other clients.  They were very professional, timely and made sure everything went smoothly.  After the event, they put up photos from the event on their site plus they created a video on YouTube highlighting their work:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rd3NYYbN1XM

Chris and I told jokes and stories interwoven into the case studies to make the sessions engaging, memorable and fun.  Lots of laughs going on!  We received a ton of positive feedback from Eventige, Venagi, the event attendees and our winners!

I had some really interesting talks with Venafi customers from Home Depot and Microsoft as well as several of the sales engineers.  I completely felt in my zone working this conference booth as a technically engaging individual who happens to have a great smile!  I’m glad I was able to partner up with Venafi and Eventige to successfully deliver a great experience to RSA conference attendees (and not feel like a booth babe!).

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Men Watch My Technology Videos

Men watch my videos.  That’s right.  My highest performing demographic for the YouTube videos I create are men between the ages 35 -54.  In fact, 72% of viewers of my YouTube videos are male.

Since technology is still primarily a male dominated field and that is the topic I focus on for most of my content, it’s not surprising to see this.  I like to take take it a step further and say that decision makers watch my videos.  How do I know this?  Because my online social content has attracted many of my clients.  They see my work, they feel they can relate to it and I understand their problems.

I was recently asked by a company about my demographics.  When you’re talking with companies about opportunities and campaigns, they want to see social proof.  Are they people they need to reach paying attention to your content?  Social Proof as defined by Wikipedia is “informational social influence” upon a person’s actions or decisions.  While there are many “social media experts” and “digital strategists” running around saying they can turn the tides on buying decisions, in the end, real people want real solutions to their problems.

That’s what I provide via my video content.  I focus on business technology because for the last six years, I’ve been a consultant helping companies make decisions about technology.  I’ve also implemented a lot of that technology for the same companies.

While I have made videos about other topics that address other areas of my life including dating, curly hair and even menstrual cramps, I always come back to what I’m most passionate about: helping people feel good about technology.

Now am I saying that the women who watch my videos are only watching the non-technology ones?  No, not at all.  In fact, since moving to San Francisco, I’ve met more women in technology in one year than I met in my entire life living in Minneapolis.  And I mean seriously amazing, smart, creative, hard working, brilliant women doing big things.  I simply want to point out that I do create videos that are about my life, my interests and my problems I struggle with and some of those have to do with me being female.

In fact, this sort of combination of lifestyle and technology content has landed me gigs.  The lawyer in Maryland who invited me to speak about technology tools for faith based organizations saw one of my hair videos and then on the sidebar saw my technology videos.  She could relate and reached out so her conference audience could gain knowledge.

One video I really like is the one I did about the travel planning website, hipmunk:

When I create video content I do three things:

  • Focus on topics people are interested in
  • Speak from the heart
  • Share my experience

This keeps my content authentic, genuine and to the point (well, most of the time, I do have a few rambling videos!).

So keep in mind it’s not always about how many Twitter followers you have, how many blog posts you’ve written or name dropping when you meet someone; it’s about delivering value.

That said, one thing I’m looking to do in 2012 is to improve the production quality of my videos.  For me this means lighting, transitions and tent poling around events like holidays, news stories and events.

Interested in working with me as an evangelist, consultant or influencer on your next project?  View my videos, read more about me and reach out via my contact page.

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I’m Applying For A Job At Google

I applied to work at Google!  The opportunity, Google Developer Advocate, is a perfect fit for me!

Now, an opportunity that I can’t pass up has come to my attention.

Why Google, Why Now?

Here I am in December 2002 sporting my Google tank top.  Back then I thought Google was an awesome resource to find the answers I needed to solve problems.  Yeah, I was a fan girl.  Not much more because let’s face it, who wanted to work for a search engine?

Over the years though, Google’s empire of applications has grown to include every sort of imaginable product for business, enterprise and consumers.  It also has helped me grow my consulting business.  Everything from Gmail email with massive storage and Postini packed spam filitering to Google maps and Google Apps domain email; a fully fledged merchant account with Google Checkout to the oh, so personal Google Wallet for your pocket; from sneezy Google flu trends to the most massive user generated video website known as YouTube to the social experiments of Google+ and ensuring the future of bright kids spending their summers building cool stuff with Google Summer of Code, Google has expanded to offer an amazing Smörgåsbord of services, ventures and solutions.  Let’s not forget Google Maps, the Android OS and the lighter side of Google with their snarky hoaxes (yeah, I linked up to Wikipedia!).

I want to join this team!

You can read about my love of technology, background and desire to make the world a better place.

You can watch a sampling of my YouTube videos that everyday help thousands of people make decisions about technology, life and their world.

Of course, the best way to find out more about me, my journey and what matters to me is to look through the ButYoureAGirl archives.

One of my roommates works at Google, the other worked there too until he left last year to work at a startup that he’s absolutely loving now!

Below is the job description that Google seems to have been crafted for me.  I would love to share the joy of the Google API.  I love talking with tech geeks like myself learn about what their needs are.  Developers and integrators close the loop on innovation between the main product and the customer.  Look at how successful the Google Apps Marketplace has been as well as many of the early companies who signed up.  Since I’m an excellent translator of requirements and needs, have endless enthusiasm for the “Ah ha!” moment and have cultivated a following online with readers, viewers and those thinking about doing something new.

I applied for this a few days ago and read Mashable’s article, “How To Land a Job At Google” so please wish me luck!

Job for Developer Advocate at Google

http://www.google.com/intl/en/jobs/uslocations/san-francisco/engops/devrel/developer-advocate-san-francisco/index.html

The area: Engineering

Simply put, Google engineers make computers do amazing things. Populated by extraordinarily creative, motivated and talented people, our Engineering team gets excited by developing new applications that really make a difference and are used by millions of people. We’re driven by Google’s mission to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. If you seek to tackle such challenges as building a highly scalable computing infrastructure, novel storage systems, innovative user experiences or the next big application that will change the world, then this might be a perfect fit for you.

The role: Developer Advocate

As a Developer Advocate, you will be a member of the Developer Relations organization. Developer Relations is focused on driving the success of Google’s developer products and the open web by creating a thriving ecosystem of 3rd party applications and businesses built on them. You will be an evangelist for our newest technologies in the outside world, as well as a vocal advocate for developers’ needs within Google. We expect you to be an engineer who thrives on the cutting edge of technology and loves seeing exciting, new applications and business that other developers are building. Your job is to drive momentum for exciting new technologies such as Chrome, Android, App Engine, Google Wave, Google Maps API, HTML5 and our core Google Apps and Ads APIs. You will work with some of our most strategic partners who push our technology to its limits — your job is to make them successful as they build apps that showcase the potential of our APIs and developer products. You will be the public face of Google representing these products, speaking at conferences, on panels, at user groups, actively blogging, tweeting and engaging with developer press and bloggers.

Responsibilities:

  • Create momentum and drive the success of Google’s developer products and the open web through your interactions with 3rd party developers building applications and businesses on them.
  • Advocate the adoption of Google developer products to strategic partners and the broader developer community.
  • Participate in technical and design discussions with technical executives at strategic partners to speed adoption and ensure best practices during implementation.
  • Evangelize our developer products in person and online by presenting at conferences, blogging, writing technical tutorials and other similar activities.
  • Advocate for developers internally, and influence Google developer product strategy by working with Product Management, Engineering, PR, Marketing, Business Development and other cross-functional teams.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • BA/BS degree (In lieu of degree, 4 years relevant work experience).
  • 4 years of experience including public speaking and presenting to large technical audiences, blogging and writing technical articles.
  • Programming abilities in one or more of the following languages: Java, PHP, Python, Ruby, .NET, JavaScript.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Degree in Computer Science or similar field.
  • 6 years relevant work experience, including experience blogging and writing technical articles, ideally with an existing follower base, as well as experience working directly with press and bloggers.
  • Excellent public speaking skills and charisma, with experience presenting to large technical audiences.
  • Strong command of web application or mobile application development landscapes.
  • Considerable success as a software developer, architect, technology evangelist, CTO, or consultant working with web or mobile technologies.
  • Strong command of web application or mobile application development landscapes.