Social Media Maven Chris Brogan: Listen – Connect – Publish

The other night I had the opportunity to meet Chris Brogan at an event called “Reputations” that was hosted at the Best Buy corporate headquarters in Richfield, Minnesota. Below is a summary of what I took away from the discussion.

Listen – The first marketing question should always be; “How can I help you?” Listening is the secret sauce that is cool and the minute people are treated nicely and feel seen, you matter. In social media and life, it isn’t about the tools, it is the intention and the motivation behind it. The tools we use to listen gives content and knowledge of customer issues. When we listen, it cultivates relationships that yield.

Connect – Be helpful. Find people who aren’t in your vertical and talk about them because it is best when they explain how they know you. It is amazing what can happen when we don’t talk about business. The more we talk about the people around us, the better we look.  The old thinking of  “don’t send them to your competitors,” needs to change. People think it is cool when we mention the competition. They will remember that so talk about who else has really good issues.

Publish – The purpose for publishing is to leverage platforms through blogs, video or podcast, etc. so that discussion around the campfire can begin. The key here is to make the information relevant to the audience. If we want to see people take action, create information they can use, not how great our products are. Brogan says on his blog:

“The trick with publishing is to make the information relevant to the consumer of this media. B2B has great opportunities in using publishing to improve the communications/sales process by making simple, short videos instead of simply lobbing white papers. Customer service can create behind-the-scenes blogs to show how to better use a product. Smaller businesses can capture their best customers in a photo or quick video. People can record radio shows that cover what matters most to the business. The possibilities are endless, and the opportunities to promote great content are equally dizzying in their promise.”

Innovation: Concept to Creation to Launch

The portfolio below is one of many examples that demonstrate how Kakie has used her innovation and creativity as Vice President and Founding Partner at Farmer’s Hat Productions, a children’s product and publishing company. Along with a team of great people, Kakie co-created and launched award-winning children’s books and product extensions.  Comments? Feel free to leave them below. You may also access a portfolio of examples in a photo album located here on Google

The Characters and Logos:

Bur Bur and Friends Characters

The final cast of characters after seven years in production

Farmer's Hat Productions Logo and Tagline

Company logo and tagline


Product and media brand logo and design


Websites evolution and redesign(s)

Awards and honorable mentions

  • Semi-Finalist, Minnesota Cup
  • Nickelodeon Parent’s Picks Award – best local blog Twin Cities
  • Disney iParenting Media Awards
  • Teacher’s Choice Awards
  • Presidential recognition, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama

_________________________________________________________________________________________________Bur Bur and Friends created by Farmers Hat Productions           Bur Bur and Friends Product Extensions by Farmer's Hat Productions


The Books

Bur Bur's Boating ABC's CoverBur Bur's Fishing Adventure Cover

Anna Goes Hiking Cover

Bur Bur Throws Out the First Pitch Cover



Mascots (National Product Launch, Mall of Americal)

National Product Launch, Mall of America

Mascots, Anna and Bur Bur made by Vee Corporation

Bur Bur and Friends Mascots (Vee Corporation)

Mascots Choreographed Dance and activities, Mall of America National Product Launch


Trade-show Collateral


Media Coverage & Spokes Person

ABC Affiliate Boston Market WCVB CityLine 07/01/07

NBC Affiliate Minneapolis Kare-11 Sunrise Announcement of National Product Launch at the Mall of America 07/21/07

CBS Affiliate Minneapolis WCCO Four News Saturday Morning – The back story behind Bur Bur and Friends 07/28/07

Chicago WLS ABC 7 News This Morning 09/10/07