Publisher’s Page: Gaining Social Media Credibility


By John A. Winters, Publisher

“I insist on a lot of time being spent, almost every day, to just sit and think. That is very uncommon in American business. I read and think. So I do more reading and thinking, and make less impulse decisions than most people in business. I do it because I like this kind of life.” 
~ Warren Buffett

In studying truly successful people, there are certain traits they share.

They are voracious readers; they are constantly learning; and they, for lack of a better word, daydream. By this I mean they just go off by themselves and take stock, of themselves, their companies, their lives.

No one will accuse me of not daydreaming. My wife, aka the Little Black Dress and now also preferring the Paper Girl moniker, has looked over at me on more than one occasion and said, “you’re talking to yourself again, aren’t you?”

Guilty as charged.

I read a lot. I still prefer books, as in words on paper, but carry around a tablet that contains a small library so I don’t look like one of our public high school students hunched over with a giant backpack filled with text books.

And I am continuing to learn. I’m taking an online course through the University of West Georgia on InDesign. That’s an Adobe program we use to design ads and layout The Paper and The Shopper.

And I’d like to plug UWG and their continuing education program. There is a class for everyone, from bartending to smartphone photography (I took that one) to Spanish and beyond. The Carnegie Library is another. You can read, take a course and daydream in a comfy chair all in one spot.

Another thing I’m working on is improving my social media creds, which will help improve promotion of our advertisers and offerings for our readers.

There is a wise saying that goes: “if you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room.” In other words, learn from others.

Enter Alison, resident “cruise director” and social media guru for 15 Perry St. where Winters Media & Publishing, Inc. hang our shingle. She is teaching me the ways of Instagram.

I’m learning there is a difference between a “story” and a “post.” And you can only “boomerang” in a story, which disappears anyway after a while, unlike a post, unless you delete said post. Oh, and a max of 10 photos in a post. When I ask why, I get the “because they say so.”


Yeah, let’s talk “hashtags.” A hashtag is this – # – followed by a word or phrase that others will use to search for a topic of interest.

Example, I’ve been putting up photos of our new Lodge cast iron hibachi and some rather awesome meals.

So, after the post, I would write #lodge, #castiron, #grilledmarinatedsteak, #food, #hibachi, #johnisawesome and so forth. And sure enough, the cast_iron_community, along with Lodge, found me and now “follow me.” The latter meaning I post something they find interesting.

As a minimalist in writing, I prefer a single hashtag. I created this one: #onehashtagtorulethemall (note the last part reads ‘them all’ and not ‘the mall.’) You are free to use.

Now, if some of you are saying, but wait, that # isn’t a hashtag, it’s a “pound” sign, I simply say, thank you, thank you, thank you. See Alison? I’m not alone.

Proof? When you get your debit/credit card in the mail and you have to call up to activate it, the little voice on the other end says “please enter your 16-digit account number followed by the “POUND” symbol. They don’t say “hashtag.”

Which I guess just goes to show learning is an ever continuing process.