Friday, February 6, 2009

Experts in the Industry: Leslie Poston (13 of 45)

Leslie Poston, Founder, Uptown Uncorked and guest writer for is better known in some circles as Geechee Girl (I first met her on Twitter so I still call her that in person vs. Leslie). She's smart, funny and aparently doesn't like contrived holidays. She's also a really good writer.

So here's how she answered the 5 questions in the Expert Interviews: 45 Interviews in 45 Days series;

In one sentence, please describe what you do and why you’re good at it.
I am a writer, editor, speaker, business development trainer and social media guide with a passion for learning as much as possible, sharing as much knowledge as I have, and facilitating as many useful and good real world connections through social and new media as I can.

How did you get into the world of online community, social media or social marketing?
Completely by accident! One day I decided to take my psychology education and use it with my writing and business development experience to see what I could do for the people and businesses around me, and a new aspect of my career was born. I've never looked back - I love the dual nature of my work. By continuing to write and also to offer assistance and help bridging gaps, seeking paths to social leverage and finding connections however I can to the people and companies who need me, I am never bored. I love that aspect of this business.

If you had $10 million to invest in one company and one company only based on their use of “social,” which company would it be and why?
It's a tough call, but I'd have to say TipJoy. Twitter is certainly the easy answer, but I think their continued influx of cash and buyout offers would see them through most crises. I think TipJoy has made giving back to the community easy. They have put in practice one of the biggest things I advocate - taking online social leverage and turning it into real world change. I would hope they would use the money in part to develop and secure their business against the economic flux that is happening and also share it around to some of the charities they help 
through microdonations.

Which business leader, politician or public figure do you most respect?
Jimmy Carter. I was too young to remember the details of his presidency, though I clearly remember my parents' over all sense of disillusionment about it. However, history has shown us that he had his strengths in office in spite of the flaws (I think that is true of the majority of 
presidents, no matter how ideology differs). Even more important to me is how he leveraged his clout and position after leaving office to create a lasting legacy of hope and help to people right here at home who needed it, in ways both big and small, including his work with Habitat for Humanity. That rings true for me.

Would you join a toothpaste community? Why?
I would not personally join a toothpaste community. I rarely find myself passionate about inanimate objects. However, I know plenty of people who would, and I think you could advocate for it from the toothpaste company's perspective with a straight face. People care about the products they buy and often anthropomorphize them, so a toothpaste community might make sense for a larger number of people than you'd expect. The same goes for any product or action in common use but not "attached" conceptually to one brand yet in the way Xerox, Google and Kleenex are.

Freeform – here’s where you can riff on anyone or anything – good or bad. Or just share a pearl of wisdom.
Whatever your reason for being in this social media space - customer, business, politics, social good, fun, or other - remember that your wants, desires, dreams and rules only apply to you. The beauty of this vast new frontier is how individual it is, how a la carte. Do your best to be courteous, polite and respectful, just as you would if you were meeting us in person. Don't worry so much about rules! Rules limit growth in this untested space. Try hard not to antagonize people and companies just to get attention - that reflects poorly on you, yes, but also on the rest of us here. Your actions are public. Not everything can be kumbaya and lollipops all the time, but everything good can certainly come from all of us being aware that our words and deeds affect the whole pond. More than anything, have fun. We are entering a new age where fun, new ideas and enthusiasm in work is OK - embrace it, and make sure the person next to you is having fun and finding their dreams too.


  1. Great questions. This is a great series you have going, Aaron. I particularly like the responses to the toothpaste question.

    Looking forward to the rest of the series.

  2. I think I'll just adopt these answers as my own. These are great Leslie. Inspiring even. Thanks for that.

  3. That's a nice thing to say - thank you.

  4. Yeah, I first met Geechee Girl (I pronounce it gee chee just like it looks) at a Boston Media Makers event after engaging with her in some back-and-forth tweeting. She's sassy at times but knows her subjects cold--and that's why she's an expert.