ChatterBlast got a burst of energy when Lou Perseghin joined our team in November 2012 as our new Client Services Manager.
He’s a die-hard Baltimore Orioles fan from Bel Air, MD, who graduated from La Salle’s School of Communication. He’s an instigator of Side A versus Side B arguments and a proud father to his pitbull pup, Daisy and two cats, Millie and Walter. We decided to sit down to get Lou’s take on the social media landscape.
When did you first use social media?
I’m part of the first generation that used Livejournal, Myspace, Friendster- all the early ones. I joined Facebook in 2004, during, my junior year of college.
What was your first job involving social media?
In 2007, I moved to Providence, RI to be a District Executive with the Boy Scouts. Among other things, I was responsible for their email and digital marketing, and I took it upon myself to create the social media presence for the council. I saw the potential in communicating with our fans but digital communication was still somewhat untapped so I was unable to put the resources toward it that it deserved.
So you decided to move into a social media role then?
My girlfriend at the time (now wife) and I moved back to Philly for another position with the Boy Scouts, where social media and email marketing were a direct part of my position. I spent a little over a year there, building their presence online as well as fulfilling other duties like recruiting and fundraising.
An opportunity opened up at the University of the Arts as their social media coordinator, and I started there in December of 2011. My job was to build a social presence for the Office of Admission, as well as a robust email campaign for prospective students. My goal was to create value for prospective students and highlight what UArts is all about. If your page doesn’t establish value, there’s no reason for people to visit or participate in what you’re offering to them.
How did you first hear of ChatterBlast?
They were working with UArts around the time I started there. I went to their office open house in January of ’12, and had kept in touch with Matt and Evan since. I was drawn to theirwholehearted belief in the effect social media can have on customer relationships with brands and companies.
What made ChatterBlast stand out above other agencies you’ve interacted with in the past?
Definitely the creative freedom to really build a client’s own unique presence. Clients have different needs and I get to manage clients in the best way possible for them.ChatterBlast isn’t like a massive ad agency where someone has the title “Copywriter” and their only job is to sit there and create copy all day every day. I meet and talk with my clients daily. Plus I love that you have no idea what will happen months, weeks or even days from now. People are always changing and so are the ways you get to interact with fans. There’s a unique freedom in social media to interact on a personal level and let people see the value that companies can provide for them. You can’t do that through a print ad or even a commercial!
What is the potential benefit of social media for small companies?
Look at companies like Frank and Oak or Warby Parker Sunglasses or even in Philly, Federal Donuts. They’ve built a following by creating personal relationships with customers and it’s all free! But people buy into your company when they “like” or “follow” you. They are saying, “I’m interested in what you’ve got to say, so bring it on.” If you can do that the right way, you’ll have their business for years to come, simply because you’re providing them with value and showing your passion for what your company does.
Favorite social media platform?
Twitter. I love the direct interaction you have with other people and brands. It feels much more natural, like you are in a room full of inspiring people and all you have to do is say hi. I still believe that Facebook is the most useful for businesses to build their brand image and fan-base.
What is the future of social media?
The monetization process is just beginning, and there isn’t a clear roadmap for how these companies are going to fully support themselves years down the line. I feel like the social web is getting smaller even as more people come online, with platforms suited to specialized lifestyles and smaller audiences taking the place of massive networks with hundreds of friends. We’re already transitioning the last few years from broadcasting messages to interacting with people, one-on-one. There’s a cool new app called Pheed that I think is a good indicator of what’s to come. It won’t be the spaceship but I think it’s a good launching pad for monetization.
What are your future goals with ChatterBlast?
I want to be able to fulfill client needs from top to bottom. A lot of what we do atChatterBlast fills a great niche for certain types of companies and as we grow larger, our versatility will play a key role in our success. I’m excited to be part of a team that continually learns and grows along with developments in the social space. New opportunities are exciting, and I want to be able to continue to help our clients stay relevant where it is appropriate for them.