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Social Media Night at The Dali Museum!

Ooohh…. This is going to be GREAT. Join me and my family at the Dali Museum for a the more surreal meetup ever! :) They’ve been working on this for quite a while and I know there are already over 50 people who have RSVP’d on Facebook.

Yelp is Official in Tampa!

At Bright Eyes we try to stay ahead of the game when it comes to social media. We’ve had the blog for about 4 years now. We have fun with Facebook and Twitter. When foursquare was available in Tampa, I was one of the first local bloggers to write about it. As turned out, that was pretty successful.

Well, I am excited to share the news that Yelp is official in Tampa! If you are not familiar with it, Yelp is a social online business review site. People use the site to help decided where to go and then share opinions about their experiences afterward, good and bad. You can read a more detailed explanation on my Westchase Patch blog here.

I have been using Yelp personally since early 2009 and have found it to be a lot of fun. We’ve also established a Bright Eyes account and have been offering Yelp discounts and check-in rewards check in for a quiet a while. But now that we have an official  Tampa Yelp representative, we have lots of more options includingReviews of the Day, Newsletters, and official events. So get excited! This is yet more validation that we have a thriving tech scene in Tampa. It is something we should be proud of and continue to develop!

If you have any questions about how yelp works either for consumer business, don’t hesitate to let me know.

(PS: I’m still excited about Google Plus! If you haven’t had the opportunity to try it out yet, let me know and I will get you an invite as soon as I can.)

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.
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TEDx Talk on Community and Social Media

Dr Nate Bonilla-Warford at TEDx

UPDATE: It seems the video has been made private. I have no idea why. I’ll contact TED and see if I can find out. -Dr. Nate

Woohoo! My TEDx PalmaCeia talk about building community with social media is up on Youtube. This was a great experience and I am happy and honored to have been involved.

Here is a very brief outline of my talk:

  • What an optometrist is
  • Value of building business by supporting others
  • Relationships at the individual level
  • Relationships at the business-to-business level
  • Relationships at the community level
  • Relationships at the global level
  • Importance of ideas, trust, relationships in community development

Also, check out the other talks at Tedx PalmaCeia by Michelle Northrup, Kim Randall, Mark Katz,Chris Blackerby, and Nile Nickel. Especially check out the talk by the organizer of the event Chris Krimitsos!

I’m pretty excited about this. Let me know what you think!


Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.
Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Dr. Nate to Speak about Social Media at TEDx

Wow! What a busy month! On Thursday, October 7, I had the honor of speaking at the First Annual Click Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. The conference was organized by Vision Monday and my talk , entitled “(Social Media Offers Great) Ways to Meet People (in Real Life),” was a light-hearted look at how many amazing and dynamic folks I’ve met through social media. It was a lot of fun!

The following week, I attended one of my favorite events, the annual meeting of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development. I am the co-chair of their Public Relations Committee and, as such, was part of a small group that delivered a talk about social media to about 200 optometrists who specialize in children’s vision and vision therapy.

And just when things are starting to settle down to a normal, crazy pace at the office, I am preparing to speak at TEDx PalmaCeia on November 16! I am a big fan of TED, and am very excited to be able to participate in this event. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design and its mission to highlight ideas worth spreading. You can go to TED.com and instantly find hundreds of amazing videos about incredible things.

TEDx events are local. From the TEDx PalmaCeia website:

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TED has created a program called TEDx. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. Our event is called TEDxPalmaCeia. At our TEDxPalmaCeia event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events, including ours, are self-organized.

There will be some fantastic speakers, including my friend Kim Randall, Chris Blackerby, Mark Katz, and organizer Chris Krimitsos. So check it out at the official link here. If you are coming, or are thinking about coming, check out the Facebook event (but you register at the official site). I’d love to see you there!

PS: I like public-speaking and am available for future talks. You can read about some of the past talks I’ve given here.

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.
Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Patient Spotlight: Mark Regan

I first became aware of Mark when he checked in to Bright Eyes on foursquare. In fact, as he held down the mayorship for about 6 weeks, I got to know him better and was always interested in his ideas about social media and living in Tampa Bay.  I thought he’d make a great subject for the Patient Spotlight! -Dr. Nate

Dr. Nate: Mark, I think of you as a social media marketer, but your background really is as a coder. Can you tell me about what that transition was like?

Mark, That’s right, I grew up writing code on routers and mainframes for IBM and Cisco.  As I moved into management I started becoming interested in the marketing side of the equation.  So I dabbled in product management and technical marketing.  Then one day in 2006 I learned about web analytics, this wonderful sweet spot between the technical and the marketing.  From there I’ve grown into online marketing as my fanatical passion.  Social media is an integral part of that space.

Your current project “31 Days of Wobtoberfest” is very creative. Tell me about how you came up with the idea.

I’ve read a lot about people during projects like this from Julie & Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen to DotComGuy.com to Rolf Pott’s Round the World with No Baggage and dreamed of doing something similar.  But I have a job and a family.  On September 4th of this year while driving home from a Gator game in Gainesville, the idea literally popped into my head.  That night my wife enthusiastically signed on.  Now I am blogging daily at www.31wob.com during October from the World of Beer around the corner.

That is great. How it has been received by people online/offline?

80% of the people get it within the 30 seconds. The other 20% will never really understand what it’s about.  To them it’s the beer and a waste of time and money.  I don’t bother trying to convert them.

What else are you working on?

I try to experiment with everything I read or hear about if it interests me.  Next up, I’d like to partner with someone on another short, focused project that doesn’t focus on profits, but rather makes me smarter and allows me to make mistakes with little downside.  I have the ideas but it’s really about the time and collaboration with others to make them happen.

Anything else you want to share?

Tampa has such a high quality of life.  Yet it’s really hard to find those fanatics like myself here in town.  I wish there was some place for us to get together and collaborate without having business cards jammed in your face.  I can dream, can’t I?

Thanks for letting me be a part of your Patient Spotlight, Nate!  I’m glad we got to know each other.

No problem. It was fun!

If you’d like to join Mark for 31 Days of Wobtoberfest, check out www.31wob.com. The actual Wobtoberfest celebration is this Friday and Saturday October, 22nd and 23rd. PS: My birthday is the 23rd. :)

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

 

Girl’s Life Saved Due to Facebook Photo

This is a great example of how the tools of social media can have very significant real-world positive effects.

Retinoblastoma is a very serious eye cancer. It only affects children. This is because its kills everyone who has it by five years of age. Because the eyes are connected directly with the brain, the cancer takes over the eye, then the brain and continues to spread until the victim dies.

Surprisingly, most retinobastoma is not found by a pediatrician or eye doctor, but by a friend or family member who sees something wrong with the child’s eyes. Usually this is either a white-look pupil or an eye turn.

Recently the Daily Mail newspaper in England reported this exact scenario: A friend did see a problem with 2 year old Grace’s eyes. It turned out to be retinoblastoma, which was successfully treated.  But here is the twist: the friend, a nurse, saw the problem via a photo on Facebook.

In addition to the fantastic result for Grace, there are two other points here. The first is that social media will continue to help improve education and medical care over time and this is an early example. The second is that thorough, early eye exams are a good idea. The American Optometric Association recommends exams at 6 months of age, three years of age, and before kindergarten. The InfantSEE program supports this by providing no-cost eye exams to patients between the ages of 6 and 12 months.

If you have a young child, be sure to schedule an appointment with your optometrist. You never know what problems might be found.

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

You Now Can Check In at Bright Eyes Tampa with Facebook Places and Save Money!

You love Bright Eyes, right? And you may be one of the half a billion (yes, with a “B”) people who have a Facebook account. So now that Facebook Places is up and running, you can combine Bright Eyes and Facebook by checking in at the NEW Bright Eyes Facebook Place Page!

So…. If you are thinking, “What the heck is he talking about?” Here is a quick primer:

In the social media world, location-based services are hot! Location based services (LBSs) are applications that work on your smartphone, like an iPhone, Android, or Blackberry. Because these apps know where you are via GPS, it allows you to interact with other people in specific ways: location friends, see who’s in the area, and other game-like activities.

For the last year, foursquare has been my favorite, because it is the most fun. Gowalla, Yelp and other LBS applications have been competing for interest. All of these apps let you “check in” somewhere. This usually let’s friends know that you are at that location, but also gets you discounts at certain businesses. For example, showing your check in to Bright Eyes on any of the services gets you a discount on purchased items and services.

But the big game changer was that Facebook rolled out is own LBS, totally integrated with all other aspects of Facebook. So now, even if you didn’t have a foursquare or Gowalla account, you can still check in at Bright Eyes for your discount with Facebook. You can check in two ways: the iPhone Facebook app, or using http://touch.facebook.com. (Feel free to use one of the computers if you want to check in!)

So next time you stop by Bright Eyes for an exam, to pick up contacts, or just to say “Hi”, be sure to check in!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Buy Virtual Shares of Bright Eyes with Empire Avenue

As patients of Bright Eyes Family Vision Care know, I am interested in new and interesting ways to connect. For example, I was one of the first in the Tampa Bay area to use foursquare and had a blast taking it to new heights with Foursquare Day.

Well, thanks to this story in Mashable, I have found something really cool that I want to share: Empire Avenue. The concept is super simple: buy and sell stock in people and websites. Then apply common sense. Buy low, sell high, and go for long-term rewards in the form of dividends. And it is FREE.

For example, one of my favorite Tampa bloggers is Miss Destructo. Minutes after she joined (Ticker: MSDSTO), I bought two hundred shares of her at 10.00 virtual credits per share. Not less than 24 hours later, her stock is currently at 17.95! I expect it will climb even higher after she attends the Mashable Media Summit this week in NYC so get some shares at bargain prices while you can!

If you’d like to invest in some virtual shares of your favorite optometry practice, Bright Eyes was able to score the ticker symbol EYES. You can also buy stock in Dr. Nate (ticker: NATEBW). Since Empire Avenue is in beta, you need an invitation. Just email me at doc@brighteyestampa.com if you’d like one. And then let me know when you join, so I can buy stock in you!

Have fun!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Blog verification:

EAVB_VUNAIDIIJO

Vision and Eye Care Bloglist

Last night I  gave a talk to optometrists about how social media can be used market their practices. It was a small group that was extremely interactive and I had a good time. You can see the Prezi, if you are interested.

Within the presentation, I provided a short list of eye care and vision blogs that I read and explained how essential an RSS reader is. I personally use Google Reader. (If you do not understand RSS, watch this.)

So below is the full list of vision related blogs I follow. Sorry I didn’t clean it up a bit more, but I did kick out any defunct blogs I found while editing the list. It is a bit long, but you can skim it and hopefully find a few things that are interesting or useful to you. And just because I have it listed, doesn’t mean I endorse it, just that I read it. I did bold a few that I think are particularly interesting.

Don’t see your blog or your favorite eye care blog? Be sure to let me know!

See Well!
Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch

Foursquare Day: The First Global Social Media Holiday

Note to regular Bright Eyes News readers: I know that the subject of social media and Foursquare Day is a significant departure from the usual topics of eye care news and vision therapy. However, this last week has been such an interesting experience and started at Bright Eyes and I hope you don’t mind another post….  -Dr. Nate.

I have had the most amazing week! I have been meeting amazing people, working like crazy, and this morning am reading an article in the St. Pete Times about me. It is quite surreal, I must say.

Why all the excitement? Well, it appears that I had an idea that has lead, through a chain of events involving a lot of hard work by Tampa Bay people, to the creation of Foursquare Day: the first global social media holiday.

I won’t use this space to explain the background in detail. You can read the story as it evolved here, here, and here.

But now that Foursquare Day is getting attention beyond the social media crowd (the Twitteratti, as I call them), I am getting a lot of people saying some variation of, “Hey Dr. Nate, Foursquare Day sounds really cool. I just don’t think I understand it.” So the point of this post is to explain my take on this new phenomenon.

Foursquare Day began as a fun way to recognize the company foursquare on April 16 each year.  Foursquare  is a very fun application that has the potential to enrich the life of both users and local businesses like mine. To participate, all you have to do is go to any place on April 16 where people can gather and let the world know you are there via foursquare. It is that simple.

However, as the Foursquare Day project grew, I began to think about what I was experiencing. Although I have blogged here and elsewhere for years, used Twitter and Facebook very successfully to promote Bright Eyes and create actual, real-life relationships with people, I have never experienced the raw power that social media has to literally change the world, until now. And that has become what Foursquare Day means to me.

To the best of my knowledge, and I am certain that someone will correct me if I am wrong, Foursquare Day is the first globally recognized grass-roots celebration of the power of social media as a positive force within the community.

Let’s take a look at some of the pieces of that statement:

“first” – I think. A Google  search showed lots of great Geek Holidays, but none specifically about social media, and just how social media influenced holiday shopping. Again, please tell me if I am wrong.

“globally recognized” – From the Foursquare Day Swarm HQ, from the Hyatt in downtown Tampa, we will be video conferencing with people celebrating social media from every continent, except Antarctica. (If someone can swing that, I’ll buy you lunch!)

“Grass-roots” – It is important to note that foursquare did not start this movement, nor did they buy it. It started in Tampa and has only succeeded through the very hard work of too many people to name here. Like much of the social media activity, this is being done by people purely because it is cool for them.

“power of social media” – The ability to not just chat on Facebook and Twitter (which is important), but to use wikis, Skype and other communication tools is unparalleled to any time in human history. Not only can we do these things, but we can do them ANYWHERE – coffee shops, our bed, a park. (But not while driving, for our own safety).

“Positive affect on the community” – Like any tool, social media can be used for good or evil. But I am convinced that the overwhelming use of social media is for the betterment of individuals and communities. Not only can we develop strong, permanent relationships with people both locally and globally as well as  support local, independent businesses and non-profits, we can use social media to support wonderful causes. One issue that I am passionate about is the development of children’s vision to help them reach their potential. Two social media examples that help people understand what I do is the COVD blog and this grass-roots Facebook page.

So Tampa and everyone else, even if you don’t use foursquare, please come down to the Hyatt to swarm with us for Foursquare Day on April 16 in celebration of social media. Bright Eyes is the primary sponsor, and it will be the biggest party we’ve EVER held!

And, of course, I wouldn’t be a businessman if I didn’t  mention that you can check in at Bright Eyes on April 16 and save 50% (yes, half), on all glasses and sunglasses. Read more here and tell every one you know. You will never see a deal like this again. I am certain of it.  :)

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

Dr Nate Google PlusBright Eyes Tampa on Google PlacesBright Eyes Tampa on FacebookBright Eyes Tampa on TwitterBright Eyes Tampa on YelpBright Eyes Tampa on foursquareWestchase Patch