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A Night with CREW & Crystal Washington

Social media, a powerful and ever-evolving tool, was the subject of the CREW event I recently attended with my Lawrence Group coworkers. As a lover of social media, I looked forward to hearing Crystal Washington’s expert opinion and tips for real-estate professionals to use on a variety of powerful social platforms.

Being a relatively new member of Lawrence Group’s marketing team, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to spend time among other professional, media-savvy women within my own company and the industry. The event’s location, the Caramel Room at Bissinger’s, was the icing on the cake. The space was gorgeous, and it was rewarding to see a project with Lawrence Group’s touch on it in person.

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After a bit of wine, a delicious buffet and hors d’oeuvres, we ventured into the larger event hall to enjoy our next treat: an amazing presentation by Crystal Washington. She captivated the group from the moment she entered the room. She was relaxed, witty and funny. It was as if we were being treated to a comedy show and valuable digital media lesson in one.

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Right off the bat, Crystal was great at getting us to really think about how digital media and devices have changed our lives and actions more than we think. My favorite activity she had us do was to write the letters A through Z on a piece of scrap paper and brainstorm as a group something for each letter that our cellphones have replaced. Some were easy and obvious like phone, email, and radio. Others made us chuckle at how much we would have to carry in our pockets without the convenience of our iPhones like a thesaurus, an entire music library, or a flashlight. We also tossed around some sillier (but true) ideas of what our phones can now hold such as a Zumba instructor, a xylophone, tons of junk mail or a kaleidoscope.

The exercise dramatically put into perspective how much we rely on digital devices and how much power they have. The ease of use of the cellphone fuels the power of social media for brands. Users take to their digital devices to research brands and engage with them from anywhere at any time. Likewise, brands take to their digital devices to engage with other professionals, potential clients and the end users of their services. Cell phones have made all of these interactions much more immediate.

Crystal continued the presentation by showing us how to take immediate (and improved) action to capture that power on our brand’s social media platforms through grasping strategic SEO opportunities, building meaningful connections at the right time, and building a better understanding of each platform’s best uses.

While most of what she presented included social media for professional use, she also took some breaks to get a little silly with the audience. One fun break in the presentation included challenging each table to capture an “ussie.” An “ussie” is a “selfie” of a group. Here’s our best shot:

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Overall, we learned a lot, relaxed and enjoyed the company of other professional women. Some main takeaways from the presentation were that social media can be a tool to help brands recruit, generate leads, build brand awareness, increase website traffic, manage company reputation and conduct research. Crystal reminded us to stay on top of social media to monitor trends and viral topics that we can tap into and join. Perhaps the most important takeaway was to constantly look for ways to engage, make meaningful connections and be memorable.

Crystal demonstrated how important engagement is to being memorable by sprinkling her enthusiastic presentation with wit and fun activities; it was certainly a night of fun and value that the attendees from Lawrence Group will fondly remember!  I highly recommend checking out Crystal’s website and blog, or better yet, attend one of her presentations when she makes her way to your area!

 

Claire Strube