Services

Handshake Media, Incorporated is a communications technology company offering public relations and mobile services to our business-to-business and business-to-consumer clients.

Public Relations Services
Our own social media business news channel and business network, Handshake 2.0, stars at the center of our online and social media public relations services. Our clients’ expertise is featured on Handshake 2.0 with new developments in entrepreneurship, best practices in business principles, business models, innovation, and the latest on company leaders and companies, from start-ups to moguls. Handshake 2.0 synthesizes the personal, the social, and the technological, adds the fundamental business risk reduction principle of “It’s who you know,” and shares our clients’ corporate messages in multiple, well-established social media channels and mobile applications, resulting in “word of Handshake” leads and referrals for our clients’ companies.  Read more.

Mobile Services
Handshake Media Mobile, a division of Handshake Media, Incorporated, offers corporate mobile products and mobile application development services. Read more and view our mobile portfolio.

Advertising Services
Handshake 2.0 is the it’s-what-you-know, it’s-who-you-know, gotta-know, gotta-be-seen online business network.  Get known and get seen by giving goodwill through Handshake’s unique offerings.  Read more.

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We invite you to join Our Clients.

Questions?  Contact us.

On Being Average

If you want to be average, be average. But be happy about it.After one particularly lazy quarter in 1981 at Virginia Tech, I sat on the edge of the bed in my room and burst into tears when I opened my grades.  My mother came in and found me boo-hooing, and asked quite simply whether I had done work that warranted any higher grades.  "Truthfully," I answered through the tears, "No."  In one of her most brilliant mother moments, she relieved me of the responsibility to please only her:  "Margaret, if you want to be average, be average. But be happy about it."

What relief!  I felt instantaneous pleasure at the loss of that parental performance burden.  The next feeling, however, and equally as strong, was a flash of anger. "I'm not average!  How could anyone assume that I am average, or be happy with being average? Harumph."  Needless to say, when I took responsibility for my own success, my grades and my pride in performance improved significantly and I learned so much more because somehow it really was finally up to me.

I've told this story to the agents at Coldwell Banker Townside at the beginning of each year to help them understand that their financial success is a personal choice.  Being an ethical, resourceful, responsive real estate agent is a necessity, required by their clients and by the company.  But choosing how much work to do to have more business is a personal decision.  Year-end reviews of production and the bottom line show how much "work" was done by each agent.  As they prepare their business plans for the coming year, I remind them to ask themselves if they are "average" and "happy" and to adjust accordingly.

Margaret Galecki is the General Manager of Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS in Blacksburg, Virginia. You're invited to read more by Margaret Galecki on Handshake 2.0.

Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R), is a full service real estate agency specializing in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes.  You're invited to learn all about the Coldwell Banker Townside App, check out the CBTownside blog, Keepin' It Real Estate, visit Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R) on Facebook, follow Coldwell Banker Townside on Twitter, and learn more about Coldwell Banker Townside on Handshake 2.0

Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R) is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

BlacksburgLodging Captured on Camera

In Premier Transfer and Storage Starts the Connections, we traced the amazing series of "It's still who you know" connections that make great business happen.  We imagined this scenario:

They [visitors to Blacksburg, Virginia] book their hotel in the home of the Hokies through BlacksburgLodging, love the entire pre-game, game, and post-game experience, "find their fun" through NextThreeDays, and just know they have to move back to Blacksburg.  They call Nancy Phillips of Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS to help them find and buy a house, and use Premier Transfer and Storage to move their furniture into their new home.  Wanting to connect their companies with other companies to create "it's who you know" ASAP, they buy Handshake Apps of their own to showcase their companies' members.  Then they want to join all the cool companies with site designs by ACI!

For great business to happen, no imagination is necessary, however.  Jaime Clark of Premier Transfer and Storage noted in her comment on the post which featured Automation Creations's redesign of the Premier site:

We have had great success with the new website to date, including:

  • An increase of over 250% in customer-submitted online inquires compared to the same period last year with our old website.
  • Booked appointments for in-home estimates generated from Premier’s new website have increased over 330% compared to the same period last year.
  • We have booked appointments for in-home estimates directly through Premier’s new online support chat feature.

The connections get even better.

Fantasy football software pcDrafter, a product of Automation Creations, was featured on the WDBJ7 television channel's news show.  We quickly captured this image from the video interview of Henry Bass, founder of Automation Creations, who displayed some of his company's projects.  Check out the screen on the left!

Blacksburg Lodging - Where to Stay and What to Do 
It's the Blacksburg Lodging site, designed by Automation Creations!

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Automation Creations, Inc., Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS(R), and BlacksburgLodging are clients of Handshake Media, Incorporated.

Blacksburg, Virginia Hotel Reservation Site Launches – BlacksburgLodging

From Z. Kelly Queijo, founder of Smart College Visit, Inc. a college-visit and campus tour travel-planning resource for college-bound teens and their families:

The work we've been doing at SmartCollegeVisit on travel services for the college-bound made me realize that my own college town lacked a locally-owned resource for hotel searches. We worked with Automation Creations to create a design that includes our hotel booking services and also showcases the events and restaurant specials streaming through the NextThreeDays regional event calendar.

Pairing lodging with events makes it easy for travelers to the Blacksburg area to find out where to stay and what to do. BlacksburgLodging's Twitter list streams current postings by tweeters from the town, Virginia Tech, Hokie fans, and others who just love Blacksburg.

Find a Blacksburg, Virginia hotel with BlacksburgLodging

Folks planning to travel to Blacksburg on a Hokie football weekend can search BlacksburgLodging and find out which area hotels still have rooms available. Searches can be extended to include Dublin, Christiansburg, Salem, Roaonoke, and beyond. The site includes the majority of the hotels within a 40-mile radius. Those not listed are invited to contact me about getting added to our hotel database.

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Congratulations, BlacksburgLodging!  All are invited to follow BlacksburgLodging on Twitter at @bburglodging.

BlacksburgLodging and Automation Creations are clients of Handshake Media, Incorporated.

Speaking of Social Media

I was delighted to be invited to speak as part of these panels on social media.  I'd welcome shaking hands with you at either or both events!  Registration is required.

Ah-HA! So That's How Social Media Works!
NCTC Sales and Marketing Peer Forum
NewVa Corridor Technology Council
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
7:30 AM – 9:30 AM
Tecton Products
Salem, Virginia
Directions
Registration

Social Media Seminar
Member Expo
Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
Thursday, August 19, 2010
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Holiday Inn
Blacksburg, Virginia
Directions
Registration

Anne Giles Clelland is a calm, reserved speaker

Handshake 2.0’s Anniversary Party 2.0 and Foursquare Swarm Badge Party 2.0

You're invited to Handshake 2.0's Anniversary Party 2.0 and our locale's second attempt to earn a Foursquare Swarm Badge – a Swarm Badge Party 2.0!  The party is hosted by Handshake 2.0 and the Blacksburg, Virginia office of Hutchison Law Group, headed by Ken Maready.  

Update 7/28/10: Thank you, Jim Schweitzer, for your wonderful extension of the invitation to create a Foursquare Swarm in Southwest Virginia!

Here's a synthesis of what I've been thinking about Handshake, corporate anniversaries, and Foursquare:

A company's anniversary offers a once-per-year opportunity for publicity, PR, and branding.  Why, then, pair Handshake 2.0's Anniversary 2.0 with a Handshake 2.0 brand-diluting Foursquare Swarm Badge Party?

To quote the Wall Street Journal, "Foursquare has yet to figure out how to turn its growing popularity into a business."

Let's figure out Foursquare!

Foursquare has over a million users.  How to turn a user base into a business model isn't a Foursquare problem.  It's an entrepreneurship problem.  Our hot geospatial locale has a burgeoning entrepreneurial economy.  Many of our enterprises - Handshake 2.0, SmartCollegeVisit, and Actifity, for example - are online enterprises.  

Foursquare is a funded, online enterprise.  With the possibility of initiating a greater vision, I believe we need to understand it communally.  At a party.

You're invited to the party!

Handshake 2.0's second anniversary party!To celebrate Handshake 2.0's second anniversary, we're holding a Foursquare Swarm Badge Party 2.0 (we tried 1.0 earlier this year) – in Blacksburg, Virginia - 50 people, same location, same time, all on Foursquare - on July 28, 2010 at Bull & Bones in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Since the theme is 2.0, we're "doubling down."  We're offering two free beverages to the first 50 to arrive and check in on Foursquare.  If you're not on Foursquare, we'll give you a ticket for one free beverage. 🙂

Not on Foursquare?  If you'd like to be, here's where to get started.

Handshake 2.0's Anniversary Party 2.0
Foursquare Swarm Badge Party 2.0
sponsored by Handshake 2.0 and Hutchison Law Group

Wednesday, July 28, 2010
6:00 PM
Bull & Bones Brewhaus and Grill
First & Main on South Main Street
Blacksburg, Virginia
Directions to Bull & Bones

We invite you to let us know you'll attend on the Handshake 2.0 Anniversary Party 2.0 event page on Facebook.

What is a "geolocation-based social network" and what's all this Foursquare stuff?!  Find answers in our Foursquare category on Handshake 2.0.

We look forward to sharing a swarm of handshakes with you on July 28 in Blacksburg, Virginia!

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With gratitude and thanks to our Handshake clients, we're celebrating two years in business. Handshake 2.0 launched on July 28, 2008 and Handshake 2.0 turned 1.0 on July 28, 2009.

Tired of Cold Calls?

Tired of cold calls? Try a Warm Handshake from Handshake 2.0.

Warm Handshake is a post on Handshake 2.0. And here's what we do to a post on Handshake 2.0.

Handshake 2.0 specializes in social media public relations and marketing. Please see our services and feel free to contact us.

DayOne Ventures in the News

According to Pat Matthews, a DayOne Ventures mentor, applications are still being accepted for its seed stage investment and mentorship program for technology-based startups.

We were delighted that Handshake 2.0 was the venue selected to announce the launch of DayOne Ventures.  With the program beginning May 31, 2010, we look forward to learning about the entrepreneurs and companies selected for mentorship in the inaugural session.

DayOne Ventures has been in the news.  Here's a list we've compiled, most recent first:

Mentorship program gives money and more to technology startups, Blue Ridge Business Journal, May 3, 2010

How To Get Funded or Get Acquired, Building 43, April 2010 (video includes DayOne Ventures mentor Bill Boebel)

DayOne Ventures Brings Small Town Flavor to Startup Incubation, ReadWriteStart, March 31, 2010

Mentors-Plus-Capital Programs – Intense Incubation by Jim Flowers – Startup Professionals, March 17, 2010

DayOneVentures @ VT KnowledgeWorks Launches, PRWeb, March 17, 2010

DayOne Ventures Launches @ VT KnowledgeWorks – Inside VT KnowledgeWorks, March 12, 2010

DayOne Ventures Launches – Seed Stage Investment for Technology Start-Ups – Handshake 2.0, March 12, 2010

DayOne Ventures @ VT KnowledgeWorks DayOne Ventures is a seed stage investment and mentorship program for technology-based startups. Each spring DayOne engages with up to three early stage startups through a competitive evaluation process. Winning teams can receive up to $16,000 to cover personal and business expenses related to participation in the summer mentorship program, plus class A office space and high-speed internet access during their stay. Throughout the summer, each team receives regular mentoring by successful entrepreneurs who have built and sold technology businesses. The program concludes in late August. At the end of the summer, each firm has the opportunity to present to potential investors via a demo day event.

You're invited to read more about DayOne Ventures on Handshake 2.0 and to follow DayOne Ventures on Twitter @dayoneventures.

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DayOne Ventures is housed at the VT KnowledgeWorks Business Acceleration Center, located in the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center in Blacksburg, Virginia.  VT KnowledgeWorks is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Entrepreneurs Can Polish Their Pitches to Angel Investors

460 Angels, a seed and early-stage angel investor group based in the New River Valley and Roanoke region of Virginia Having written several posts about Angel Investing on Handshake 2.0 and having heard questions about angel investing from the constituents of local angel investing initiatives in the Blacksburg, Virginia area, I was fascinated to receive this announcement from Bob Summers:

"The NewVa Corridor Technology Council's (NCTC's) Access to Capital Committee and 460 Angels are seeking local businesses which need capital to grow.  A business pitch is the first step to communicating an entrepreneur's idea and opening doors to the required $. The Pitch and Polish Clinic is an activity which is designed to help  entrepreneurs make their presentations better before they go to the funding source."

Bob Summers was open to answering the questions I've heard (and asked myself): 

Q. I'm an entrepreneur with an idea, but I don't have a company.  Can I still pitch?

A. Yes, but you need to have prepared a two-page executive summary to get the most out of the presentation.  A well-prepared business pitch includes details on the Market opportunity, the Technology/Product, and the Team that is going to lead it.
 
Q. I have a company, I have an idea, but I don't know if I'm an entrepreneur.  Can I still pitch my idea to see if this is the path I want to take with my company?

A. Depends.  The Pitch and Polish clinic is designed to help entrepreneurs tune an investor pitch to raise needed seed or early stage capital.  Time is best used for those product companies which have global scale that require angel or venture capital for rapid growth.
 
Q. I'm not sure my idea is good enough to pitch.  How can I decide whether or not it's good enough?

A. Is your idea the basis of a business that can have $50+ million in revenue in three years?  Software product companies that meet the needs of an untapped market can meet this metric and are good ideas.  Think hard about the market opportunity (who will buy) and competition (who will stop you).  If your product will solve a problem that is worth paying for and you can beat the competition, then it is a good idea worth giving a pitch.
 
Q. I want to pitch, but I'm not sure I'm ready.  How do I know I'm ready?

A. If you can explain the idea and business in 10 minutes with 6-8 slides, then you are ready.  The Pitch and Polish Clinic is designed to give you a chance to practice, so go for it!  This is not Shark Tank…we don’t bite.

Thanks for the information, Bob.  I'm still working on my killer app.  " $50+ million in revenue in three years"?  Piece of cake.  I look forward to being in touch with you when it's ready. 🙂

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For more information about the Pitch and Polish Clinics, to learn about upcoming clinics, or to request a pitching slot, please contact Bob Summers, [email protected].

Pitch and Polish is open to all technology product companies with a 10-minute business presentation that want feedback from a room of experienced business people. The clinic provides an entrepreneur with the opportunity to give a 10-minute investor pitch and receive feedback on how to improve.  The clinic is held monthly at the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.  The first Clinic will be held in May, 2010.

460 Angels is a seed and early-stage angel investor group focused on funding and coaching hi-tech entrepreneurs with scalable business models based in the New River Valley and Roanoke region of Virginia.

The goal of the Access to Capital Committee, formed by the NewVa Corridor Technology Council, is to increase communication between technology firms that need funding and investors willing to fund them.

For more information about angel investing, feel free to read Angel Investor's Guide to Blacksburg, Virginia and our category Angel Investing on Handshake 2.0.

The NewVa Corridor Technology Council (NCTC) is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Real Handshake

Allen J. Fuller, III and Anne Giles Clelland
Allen J. Fuller, III, photographer, and Anne Giles Clelland, CEO of social media public relations agency Handshake Media, share a Handshake 1.0 at Art To Go at the YMCA at Virginia Tech.

Online business associates through Twitter, email and Facebook, this was the first time they had met in person.