Archive for February, 2011

February 24, 2011

Social Media Panel at Foodportunity Serves Up Mike Thelin, Nick Zukin, Gregory Denton & Carrie Welch



Portland’s food community gathers to talk food with tastes from some of the new kids in town — St.Jack and Aviary, as well as Beaker & Flask, KOi Fusion, Lincoln, Accanto, Genoa and Serratto.

PORTLAND, Oregon (February 15, 2011) – Think of the food blogger you follow daily, but have never met. Or your favorite butcher, artisan chocolate maker or cheese guru. Portland will once again host Foodportunity, an opportunity for people from all different food and beverage careers to mix, mingle and talk about food. Meet local chefs, food writers, photographers, publicists, artisan producers and farmers who have all contributed to Portland’s thriving independent food scene. A regular event in Portland, Foodportunity will be held on Monday, March 7, 2011 from 6-9 p.m. at the Heathman Restaurant and Bar. Tickets are $20 in advance, $26 at a later date (w/ all handling fees) and include bites from a collection of Portland restaurants such as Accanto and Genoa, Aviary, Beaker & Flask, KOi Fusion, Lincoln PDX(Culinary Artistry and Sunshine Tavern opening

Spring 2011)St. Jack, Serratto and The Heathman Restaurant and Bar. Tickets are available now through Brown Paper Tickets at

“Our last Portland event was a hit and food professionals love the chance to catch up with colleagues or meet someone new in the food community,” said Keren Brown, Foodportunity founder. Foodportunity is one of the few events of its kind that brings Portland’s food community together in one location on one night – a true meeting of the minds and tastebuds!

Grazing is Encouraged…

Portland restaurants will serve up some tasty bites included in the admission. Beer and wine will be available from a cash bar, and a wide range of food products from local companies will be available to sample. Companies interested in showcasing their product may contact Keren Brown,

Down & Dirty with Social Media

New to the Portland event will be a social media panel made up of some of our favorite Portland social media stars including Mike Thelin, a local food writer, Cooking Channel contributor, and food event maven. Joining Mike on the panel will be Carrie Welch, formerly the Vice President of PR for the Food Network, Nick Zukin, food writer and host of and executive chef Gregory Denton of Metrovino. Learn a few insider tips to starting a social media campaign in your restaurant or food business and share your personal experiences on Facebook and Twitter.

Speed Networking – for Foodies

The first 30 Foodportunity ticket-holders to send an email to will get a seat at the “speed networking” session, hosted by Byron Beck, a freelancer for national and Oregon-based publications, who also appears on television and radio, has his own blog at and contributes to What better way to meet so many foodies at one time (for 1 minute each) and hand out business cards in this intimate and fast-paced setting.


About The Heathman Restaurant and Bar

The Heathman Restaurant exemplifies the best of the Pacific Northwest using seasonal ingredients inspired by the flavors and cuisine of France. Recipient of the James Beard Best Chef: Pacific NW award in 2001, Philippe Boulot partners with the region’s select growers, producers and vintners to find the highest quality ingredients. Boulot was honored by the Academie Culinaire de France as the Academie’s Chef of the Year. The Heathman Restaurant and Bar was chosen as one of the “Best Bars” by Portland Monthly. For more information, please call 503-790-7752 or visit The Heathman Restaurant is located in the historic

Heathman Hotel at 1001 SW Broadway in downtown Portland’s cultural district.

About Foodportunity

Keren Brown, aka Frantic Foodie, conceived of the food networking idea known as Foodportunity and has held more than a dozen food-related events last year in both Seattle and Portland. Recently recognized by as “Doer of the Week”, Keren also organizes monthly events for Seattle food bloggers where she holds Q&A sessions with famous authors, tours of food companies and other events to help bloggers interact. Keren’s food events information can be found at Frantic Foodie in the Seattle PI, and on the events page of For more information, visit and follow us @foodportunityOR and #Foodprtpdx and #Foodprt.

February 10, 2011

A Mildly Dissatisfied Customer Service Experience #Custserv

Update – Hootsuite kindly responded in the comments.

Many of you know that I have co-hosted a weekly chat on Customer Service since late 2009. With over 77,000 tweets since April in this chat (#custserv), we’ve discussed much about best customer service practices across industries.

Early this week, I had an experience with Hootsuite, that left me disillusioned, mildly dissatisfied and a bit cynical about their Customer Service Department.

I’ve been using Hootsuite for over half a year, to manage both personal and client social media (one of the tools). I love it’s functionality, especially being able to group accounts/streams into tabs.

During the time I’ve been using Hootsuite, there have been several times a day where messages would not post to Facebook personal and fanpage accounts. I’ve dealt with it. I’ve known that they have an API issue with Facebook for months.

I’ve been a paying subscriber since they moved to a subscription format.

Beginning Sunday night, however, it all crashed. I kept getting session key errors and fails to post messages. I spent about eight hours between Sunday night and Tuesday researching their Help FAQ, user community blogs, etc., seeking an answer. Finally, fed up and frustrated, I reached out on Monday afternoon. They got back to me on Tuesday, mid-day. Here’s the exchange:

Jeffrey J Kingman
@hootsuite_help Are you guys having issues with Facebook again?
HootSuite Helpers
@jeffreyjkingman What is the issue you’re experiencing with your Facebook connections? ^DL
Jeffrey J Kingman
@HootSuite_Help complete fail on facebook connectivity, multiple fanpages and personal accts
Jeffrey J Kingman
@HootSuite_Help have already done help blog solutions many times.
HootSuite Helpers
@jeffreyjkingman Have you attempted testing in a new browser after clearing cookies and cache? ^DL
HootSuite Helpers 

@JeffreyJKingman Our operating hours are 9am-6pm PST. Tickets are answered in priority sequence. ^CT
HootSuite Helpers 

@jeffreyjkingman This is a known bug that Facebook has been working on: ^DL
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help Update #3 on is dated Dec. 29. Any resolution in sight? #custserv
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help With 1000s of paying users worldwide, would it make sense to pay $80,000/year for 24 hr help desk?#custserv
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help Cleared cache/cookies. Tested on Chrome, Rockmelt and Firefox last night. #custserv
HootSuite Helpers 

@jeffreyjkingman It does continue to be a bug with Facebook’s API. We’re anxiously awaiting their solution on this. ^DL
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help I’m frustrated/not angry. There is a disconnect between your marketing/what product can do.#custserv
Jeffrey J Kingman
@hootsuite_help Hootsuite Brand Promise // Product Disconnect #custserv
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help I love the product – when it works as promised. #custserv
HootSuite Helpers 

@jeffreyjkingman Please read the Support Captain’s Note on this issue, particularly the section on Facebook functionality
Jeffrey J Kingman
@hootsuite_help I have used Hootsuite/FB for months with spotty issue. It’s complete fail at this point.#custserv
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@hootsuite_help Yes, I’ve read that blogpost about a dozen times since November #custserv
HootSuite Helpers 

@jeffreyjkingman Good! Since November, we continue to document the issue. When the status changes, we’ll give everyone an update. ^CT
Jeffrey J Kingman 

@HootSuite_Help So in other words, I should stop depending on Hootsuite to manage Facebook accounts. #custserv

And that is it. No further interaction from Hootsuite.

Here are my points:

  • There’s a broken, or at least mildly unsustainable, brand promise issued by Hootsuite; that one will be able to manage postings across social networks, including Facebook, with ease and dependability. See this snapshot.
  • When a social media tech company has 1000s of paying customers spread around the world, having a help desk that only operates nine hours a day on Pacific time isn’t providing good customer service. What would that cost be? Hiring two reps, one for swing shift and the other for graveyard?
  • I had stated early in the conversation that this issue was repeating and that I had used all of their existing information over the previous months. They then referred me to a blogpost from November (which I’d already read and stated I’d read).
  • The end of the dialogue was weak. Simply congratulating a customer that they’ve done everything suggested, and leaving the customer frustrated – what? It doesn’t feel like good customer service practice.

My point in blogging this is a deep desire to better the practice of customer service across industries. I’m curious to hear what others think; if you would have handled it differently, if you think Hootsuite’s customer service was adequate or excellent (or abysmal) and any other opinions.

Meanwhile, to Hootsuite, I’m not satisfied. I’m not angry either. But the exchange and your Customer Service response felt trivialized; almost a brush off. I’ll keep using it and paying for it, but if another product appears with equal or better features, I’ll probably switch.

Jeffrey J Kingman, CEO, Chalkboarder

February 10, 2011

Question: Can comment card content be used in social media optimization by a brand?

Many of you know I traded a 20 year career in hospitality management to found Chalkboarder. I am still very passionate about the hospitality industry and culinary management/creativity.

Today comes a question from a restaurant friend – that I’d like to get your opinion on.

Can a restaurant (or other business) use content from comment cards in their on-and-offline marketing materials? Should they?

Most comment card systems are anonymous. Should a business be able to use a comment left by a customer, if the customer believes they are just addressing management? Thoughts?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this in the comment section below..

Disclaimer – all comments below are considered public dialogue and may be used in future blogposts by this author. 🙂

February 6, 2011

BF&T Beard House Dinner Update (Social Media)

Just a quick update looking at metrics from a two week Facebook Fanpage campaign for Berkshire Farm & Table’s push into social media over the last month.

The Facebook Fanpage for Berkshire Farm & Table was launched on January 23rd, 2011. As of this afternoon, this fanpage has had over 25,340 post views in under two weeks. Nice job on social media optimization, BF&T!

February 5, 2011

Oregon Wineries Social Media: Informal Survey

On Thursday, February 3, I spoke about social media to 70+ Oregon wineries at Stoel Rives LLP’s 4th Annual Wine Law Summit at the Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg, OR.

At the beginning, as I do with every speaking engagement on social media, I asked the conference some social media assessment questions. Here are the questions and responses:

Q: How many of you (wineries) have a Facebook Fanpage? A: 40% +/-

Q: How many of you are tweeting? A: 25-30% +/-

Q: How many of you are on LinkedIn? A: < 5%

Q: How many of you have a branded YouTube channel? A: <2%

Very intriguing results. In a conversation with Rick Bakas, @RickBakas, (the very first winery social media director – ever) prior to my speaking engagement, we talked about what some of the challenges for wineries are in adopting social media.

One topic that I find especially intriguing is – how can wineries use social media optimization to help restaurants and wine shops sell more wine – and to sell their (the winery’s) wines?

I believe that the answer lies in compelling and diverse messages. I’d be very curious to hear your thoughts on this – how can wineries leverage social media to their benefit? Also, please go over to Rick Bakas’ site and show him some lovin’!

The slides from my presentation at the Wine Law Summit can be found here: Winery SMO.

Jeffrey J Kingman

February 5, 2011

Witticists on Twitter

I monitor Twitter constantly. At 140 characters per message, I enjoy the humor and banter to be found there greatly. A few of my favorite personalities and examples are below:


@JeffreyJKingman 35F headed to 40F in DFW. It came. We thaw. We conquer.


If they’ve got the dirt on you RT @tchwojko: @Herbguy accountants can find truffles?


Tonight Groaner: Very foamy poet – William Shakesbeer #humor

Who are your favorites?

Tags: , ,
February 5, 2011

1st Time: Social Media from James Beard House Kitchen

Last night, six chefs from the Berkshire Farm & Table collective prepared and served a multi-course dinner at the James Beard House in NYC. A significant social media production, front-line managed by Angela Cardinali, created and distributed hundreds of pictures and video content from the kitchen during the dinner.

James Beard photo by Ken Steinhoff

Angela shared with Chalkboarder this morning that during the dinner, a James Beard Foundation representative told the assembled diners that it was the first time a formal social media campaign had been produced from an event at the Beard House.

Chalkboarder is humbled that we were able to play a small part in assisting the Berkshire Farm & Table group in spreading word, not only about the event, but also about their passion with local chef/local farmer relations. Way to go, BF&T!! You have pioneered a new realm in culinary social media!

February 5, 2011

Plan B: Live Social Media from the James Beard House

Due to unforeseen accounts receivable circumstances, I was unable to fly to New York City to facilitate “live” social media optimization of the Berkshire Farm & Table’s Whole Hog Dinner at the James Beard House today.

Social Media Relay Tower

While I’m personally quite bummed.. to not hang with six awesome Chefs in the James Beard House kitchen (and the bourbon after), I’ve managed to create a Plan B that positions Chalkboarder as a Social Media Communications Relay Tower.

Angela Cardinali, PR for Mezze Restaurants and the Chefs, delivered on-site generated content to the Berkshire Farm & Table Facebook fanpage and also to Chalkboarder via email and social web. Chalkboarder was to act as a remote transmitter, updating near-live-time the Berkshire Farm & Table social networks.

Here’s tonight’s Menu..

Hors d’Oeuvre

French-Style Bratwurst Corn Dogs with Ioka Valley Farm Maple Mustard

Smoked Tomato and Bacon Bloody Marys

Grilled Chorizo on Overmeade Farm Potato Gallettes

Pork Rinds with Beer Powder

Pig Tail Torchon with Sauce Gribiche

Marques de Gelida Brut Exclusive Reserva Cava NV


Porchetta di Testa with Pickled Vegetables, Pepperoncini, and Micro-Arugula
Bodegas Muga Rosado 2009

Smoked Taft Farms Sweet Corn Bisque with Barrington Ale–Braised Pork Shoulder, Fried Buttermilk Onions, and Cilantro Oil
Torres Viña Esmeralda 2009

48-Hour Sous Vide Carolina Barbecue–Style Spareribs with Housemade Mustard Kimchi
Las Rocas Vinas Viejas de San Alejandro Garnacha 2007

Grilled Maple-Cured Pork Loin with Bayley Hazen Blue–Buttered Hominy and Balsamic-Braised Kale
Conde de Valdemar Gran Reserva 1998

Slow-Roasted Pork Belly with Poached Farm Egg, Dressed Winter Arugula, and Cheddar Toast
Llopart Leopardi Rosé Brut Reserva NV

Mayan Chocolate Cake with Coffee Ice Cream and Candied Bacon Caramel
Bodegas Toro Albala Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva 2003

For complete coverage of the event, we invite you to check out Berkshire Farm & Table’s social media sites:

Facebook Fanpage

Twitter @BerksFarmTable

Blog Berkshire Farm & Table

Twitter hashtag

Carolina Shot Ribs


February 2, 2011

Lurkers in Social Media

Paul Paz (WaitersWorld) and Chalkboarder are co-managing a Social Media Optimization (SMO) for the Northwest Foodservice Show (April 3-4, 2011 in Portland OR).

The first week of 2011, Paul and I launched a SMO strategy for the Northwest Foodservice Show. The leading foodservice tradeshow for the Pacific Northwest, put on by the Washington Restaurant Association and the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, the Show did not have any social media presence.

We are very pleased with initial results, especially in Facebook. Yesterday we noticed that in a mere four weeks, with just over 100 people “liking” the fanpage, we’ve breached over 20,000 impressions.

An observation – there are a lot of “lurkers” on the social web – people or brands that do not “like” a fanpage, but still visit and pay attention.

I’ve been very impressed with Paul Paz’s work on the Show’s fanpage (we divied up: he handles the fanpage and I handle the Twitter/Youtube/Blog). He’s consistent, compelling and prolific in both messaging and being in conversations. To Paul – you rock, brother!

Jeffrey J Kingman

February 2, 2011

Nibbles & Networking at Foodportunity Seattle

Last night I had the pleasure of being back in Seattle again to nibble and network at Foodportunity Seattle, held at Tom Douglas Restaurants Palace Kitchen.


This is the third Foodportunity I’ve been to inside a year and find the networking invaluable and the nibbles nom nom nom nom nom. I lost my date Libby Tucker, CEO of Beer2Buds, for about an hour (she’s particularly excellent at networking) and found myself engaged in numerous conversations with the Washington Beef Council, Whole Foods, chefs, public relation professionals, restaurateurs, food bloggers and foodies.

Keren Brown, the organizer of Foodportunity, somehow seems to attract a hip, diverse and professional crowd to these events… and the “foodie speed-dating” had a disproportionate ratio of pretty women to men (this was also observed at Foodportunity PDX last September and is anticipated to occur again in Portland March 7th).

The nibbles were deliciously nom-y! I especially enjoyed the chicken pate quenelles and Cathy Whims’ (Nostrana in Portland) dessert offering. I’m curious to see what the final commentary reveals as to favorites from the Chef’s offerings!

If you weren’t able to make Foodportunity PDX last fall, nor last night’s Foodportunity SEA, tickets ($20 pp) are on sale for Foodportunity PDX at the Heathman Hotel in Portland March 7th. I guarantee a night of great food related networking – and because I’m deeply passionate that Portland has the hottest culinary scene in the world – will also guarantee a stellar night of nibbling.

Jeffrey J Kingman