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It has been an increasingly joyful event to meet more and more of you wonderful Murphy-Goode Wine Country Lifestyle Correspondents.  One of the strengths in these new relationships is the opportunity to share our thoughts , insights and just plain fun over a broad scope of social networks.  I first discovered Todd on a few “choice” blogs asking all kinds of questions and coming off as an allround nice guy (now he calls himself “a Goode Guy” 😉 ).  When I go places online, I am not surprised to see he has been there before I have… and what sweet satisfaction to occasionally arrive somewhere before Mr. Smiley does!

Today I am pleased to offer you another guest post, this time by Todd Havens.  Here are his thoughts on what a social media whiz needs to bring to the table:


First off, many thanks to Andrea for letting me contribute a guest post here and for all of her hard work to provide a forum for the multitude of questions that have crossed our minds during this exciting application adventure. I almost wrote the ‘c’ word, but as we all know, “It’s not a contest.” And ‘exciting’ because you just never know who’s going to show up in the comments! Or what temperament they might be in. ☺

Eric Hwang gave a great, rational breakdown of general requirements in the comments to another post here so hopefully we all agree by now that Murphy-Goode is not just looking for a Sunday blogger, camera strapped around their neck, to stagger through the vineyards counting raptors. Who LOVES wine…of course.

Here are my top 5 traits needed for the MGWCLC:

Communicator – Easygoing, affable, engaging personality with a side of flirt. Having some funny in ya’ should be a requirement, too. It sounds like your humor can even lean toward the dark, but I wouldn’t show too much of that in the interview process. Save it for a post-hired game of Liar’s Dice with a bellyful of Zin. Yum!

Artist – This is a word I’m not fond of using. The Virgil of varietals? Monet of Murphy-Goode? Seurat of Sonoma? (Okay, I’m done.) “Endlessly creative technician” is more like it, both in video, stills and print. Someone who can consistently deliver engaging content with enough technical savvy to not reflect poorly on the company’s (and parent company, Jackson Family Wines’) well-earned reputation. No hand puppet theater here to describe the journey from grape to bottle. Or…maybe exactly that! Knowing what’ll go viral in video is good, too, but if you had that secret sauce, you’d already be employed by a behemoth ad agency and 10K a month would be slumming. Lots o’ writing, too, so a way with words (not wurds) is really important (not impotent).

Diplomat – Part politician in terms of brand evangelism and company positioning and part coordinator to involve as many necessary elements of the local Healdsburg and online communities to cast as wide a social media net as possible. Good-natured and emotionally stable demeanor to avoid being pulled into the probable online drama. Diplomat role is also necessary for inevitable media coverage especially if a media outlet is known for ruffling feathers for a good show. The ability to see a curveball as it’s left the mitt is a major bonus in this game.

Adventurer – From the AReallyGoodeJob.com site itself, they say they’re looking for people who are imaginative and inquisitive. A curious self-starter is a necessity since they’re throwing open the doors to their winery and their lives. It must be a little nerve-wracking for them to think that someone with all kinds of recording devices may always be lurking around in the spaces they call home so I come back to the fact that they need to find someone they immediately connect with and trust. You’ve also got an entire county to explore so the more curious, the more better. 😉

Connector – Struggled with this category for awhile. Better nouns welcomed in the comments! Basically, a person who can reach across demographics and cultures to engage the next generation of wine consumers. This is a motivating factor for the entire wine industry right now so I don’t think we should underestimate its importance for this correspondent position, either. To be clear, if your social media strategy involves posting YouTube videos of your twice-daily medical pill regimen, you may not be a Millennial maven. While I don’t think you need to BE an actual Millennial, especially given much of the branding and strategic mindset needed for the gig, you do certainly need to be aware of current trends…like Twitter. Even though that’s not where the Gen Y’ers are hangin’ these days.

So that’s my not-so-quick wrap-up. But then again, what do I know? Maybe I’ve just tailored the MGWCLC to fit me like a Todd. I mean, like a ‘T.’

Now just go have fun with your videos and your social media whizzing, you crazy kids!