Bonnie Zink

Knowledge mobilization, writing, and social media top the discussion list.

Bonnie Zink - Knowledge mobilization, writing, and social media top the discussion list.

Do you need help?

BZ_Logo_143Are you struggling with the hectic pace of your workload?

Do you dream of cloning yourself so you can meet your goals?

Are thoughts of hiring an assistant distracting you?

Then, I have great news for you! I have room for new clients and invite you to join this very exclusive club.

Why hire a freelance contractor? 

Freelance contractors actually save you time and money. Hiring a freelance contractor makes sense for your productivity and your budget!

  • Freelance contractors are experts at what they do and have the expertise to efficiently accomplish the work you need done.
  • Freelance contractors free up your team to concentrate on the work that is part of their job.
  • Freelance contractors help you craft quality documents and publications that allow you to shine in print and online.
  • Freelance contractors help you with your bottom line as they do not require benefits, physical space, or resources.


Together, we’ll move your knowledge so that it is positioned to affect positive social change. I will put over 20 years of experience to work for you. I specialize in:

  • developing knowledge mobilization (#KMb) strategies and putting them into action
  • modern and traditional marketing and communications techniques
  • editing, researching, and writing (traditional publications and digital communications)
  • social media training and management
  • and a whole lot more!

I invite you to check out my CV summary, visit me on the web, connect with me on Twitter, hangout with me on Google Plus, or become part of my network on LinkedIn.

I am interested in helping you tell your story!

What’s next?

Let’s talk! Feel free to contact me at

UNselling: The New Customer Experience

Scott Stratten (@UNmarketing) and Alison Kramer (@UNAlison)
Publisher: Wiley
ISBN: 978-1-118-94301-4 (ebk)
This is not a rap. This is not an overly enthusiastic video opinion. This review does not contain any testimonial or phrase for which the authors paid “five bucks” (or any amount). No ethical conventions were broken during the reading of UNselling or the writing of this review. 

Now that the disclaimer is out of the way, let’s get on with the review.

Stratten and Kramer have grown into their roles as the super heroes of the modern marketingUnselling_Book(UNmarketing) world. They continue their quest to rid the world of push style, traditional marketing methods of a bygone age. Their super power is a deep understanding of what drives humanity and the power of building community where people are talking to people. With words as their weapon, this dynamic duo sets out to share their knowledge and help you succeed in an increasingly noisy and digitized world.

Who should read UNselling?

You, that’s who. UNselling is a book for everyone. CEOs, marketers, writers, business people, employees, employers, and all other professionals will find UNselling a valuable read. It will help you change your thinking and understand the power of people talking to people. It will give you the tools you need to understand what really drives people to buy products and services and help you to stop selling and start talking.

Why read UNselling?

Are you tired of being sold to at every turn. Adverts make their way into our email in-boxes and they appear in our favourite social network streams. We are sold to in magazines, on television, and on radio. Adverts appear at the top of our favourite websites and they slide into view while we read our favourite blogs. They are everywhere.
If you are anything like 99% of your fellow humans, you are tired of all the selling. UNselling will help you understand that most people have all ready made their purchasing decisions before they ever hear a sales pitch. Instead of concentrating your efforts on moving clients through that old style sales funnel, UNselling will help you understand the power of reaching out to people in a meaningful way and begin to engage with them. It will help you overcome the symptoms of modern day marketing “funnel vision” and just…stop…selling!

What is UNselling?

UNselling is what happens when you understand that your market is made up of humans. Humans are social. They like to converse, share, and engage. Humans buy products and services. They no longer passively watch television commercials, listen to radio adverts, or flip past full page splashes in the local newspaper. Humans are social creatures and want to engage in quality conversations, share great stuff, and are awesome! With this in mind, UNselling is:
  • about “stepping back from the [marketing] funnel and focusing on everything else but the sale”
  • about “the big picture: creating repeat customers, not one-time buyers; creating loyal clients that refer others, not treating people like faceless numbers; becoming the go-to- company for a product or service, before people even know they need it”
  • about being AWESOME (check out the story about the Ritz-Carlton and Joshie in Chapter 2: Joshie is Branding)
  • is about “choosing to aspire, rather than be just another company or employee”
  • about “creating ecstatic customers” by creating experiences that are worth talking about
  • about using tools wisely and knowing when a phone call, rather than a tweet, is the next step in being AWESOME

Get your copy of UNselling:

Visit to order your copy of UNselling. Craving more? Follow the UNselling community on the web:
  • Facebook – join a conversation about UNselling, UNmarketing, QR codes (and the plight of kittens), along with both the AWESOME and UNawesome bits and bobs
  • Twitter – be sure to check into the hashtag, #UNselling and #UNmarketing to follow the conversation
  • YouTube – watch Scott and Alison discuss topics addressed in UNselling and other hot topics of the marketing industry

Let’s keep the conversation going!

What’s on your mind?
  • Are you a marketer struggling to get your message heard in an increasingly noisy and digital world? Tell me about your struggles in the comments below.
  • Do you have a favourite book or resource that addresses the challenges of an ever changing digital landscape? Leave a link in the comments below and I may review it in the future.
  • Do you have a success story that will blow our socks off? Tell us about it in the comment section below.
  • Do you disagree with the message of UNselling? Share your take on modern marketing tactics in the comments below.

Join us for a special edition of #KMbChat

We have a treat in store for you!

#KMbChat LogoJoin us at 15:30 (3:30 pm) for a special edition of #KMbChat on September 29, 2014. We will talk with the Knowledge Network for Applied Education Research-Réseau d’échange des connaissances pour la recherche appliquée en éducation) (KNAER-RECRAE) team about effective knowledge mobilization (KMb) practices that support the use of your research by practitioners and other stakeholders.



KNAER-RECRAE  is a collaborative partnership among the Ontario Ministry of Education, the University of Toronto and the University of Western Ontario that aims to facilitate the dissemination and use of research evidence in the Ontario education system.

KNAER-RECRAE is an education network connecting researchers, practitioners and policy makers in Ontario schools and boards, and education intermediaries to share evidence-based best practices and creative ideas.


Dr. Carol Campbell (@CarolCampbell4) is KNAER-RECRAE’s Co-Director and Co-chair of the Planning and Implementation Committee. She is an Associate Professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, and is known for her commitment to and experience in connecting evidence, policy and practice for educational improvement.

Dr. Katina Pollock (@DrKatinaPollock) is KNAER-RECRAE’s Co-Director and Co-chair of the Planning and Implementation Committee. She is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education at Western University and is known for her research around issues of access to work and learning.

Dr. Patricia Briscoe (@KNAER_RECRAE) is KNAER-RECRAE’s Network Manager and KMb Manager. She is an instructor at the Faculty of Education at Western University and is interested in KMb strategies and using social media for KMb.

Shasta Carr-Harris (@ShastaCH) is KNAER-RECRAE’s Program Manager, Research and Knowledge Mobilization, and a doctoral student at OISE, University of Toronto focusing on KMb and system-wide evidence-based change in education.

Sofya Malik (@SofyaMalik) is a doctoral student at OISE, University of Toronto, and is interested in KMb program evaluation and equity in education.

September 2014 #KMbChat


#KMbChat LogoJoin us on September 25, 2014 at noon (Eastern Standard Time) for another round of conversation and connections. This month’s #KMbChat is moderated by Ali Abbas Mehboob Hirji (@abbaspeaks), Research and Project Coordinator with ORION (Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network), and features Ben Peterson (@benpetey), co-founder of NewsanaPlus (@mynewsana).

Join the conversation by adding #KMbChat to your tweets and by following @KMbChat on Twitter. This is your chance to learn from one of the best in the knowledge industry, Ben Peterson.

About NewsanaPlus

Newsana+ Start your own newsmag copyNewsanaPlus allows online influencers to create their own publishing business within minutes. They provide users with a suite of easy-to-use tools, allowing users to package and sell the best of the insights, via monthly subscriptions, to their followers. Unlike traditional social media and publishing platforms, users get paid to use NewsanaPlus.

NewsanaPlus launched an MVP version in May 2014 and has shown encouraging results. A more robust version of NewsanaPlus is scheduled to be unveiled in early October, 2014.

More About Ben Peterson

JHR headshotBen Peterson is the co-founder of NewsanaPlus. He has served as the Executive Director of Journalists for Human Rights (JHR). Under his leadership, JHR grew into Canada’s largest international media development organization, running projects in 17 African countries and building one of Canada’s strongest student leadership networks. He continues to serve on JHR’s Board of Directors. You may recognize Ben as a recipient of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 Award and the Queen’s University Alumni Humanitarian Award.


August 2014 #KMbChat PDF

researchimpactResearchImpact-RéseauImpactRecherche (@researchimpact) was our host on August 28, 2014 as we explored Community Knowledge Exchange with @CKXdotorg. Participants from around the globe joined the conversation and shared their knowledge and experience with each other. It is because of each of you that this #KMbChat was a resounding success!

We joined knowledge mobilizers from around the globe to explore issues of community-community knowledge exchange and compare and contrast those to community-campus knowledge exchange. Download the PDF and find out what your colleagues had to say about it!



Figuring the why before the how of social media for academic researchers

This is the first in a series of postings meant to help you figure out a social media strategy that works for you.

BZ_social_Social media works. It is a powerful communication tool that will help you reach your goals. The magic happens once you understand what those goals are and creating a plan that will get you there. Businesses want to connect with their clients and increase sales. Community organizations work to increase donations and amplify their message. Government representatives want to connect with voters and listen to their constituents. Individuals want to connect with like-minded people and find out what’s happening in the world.

The drivers of online activity are different for everyone. This series is meant to help researchers and academics figure out what their goals are, develop a strategy to help them reach those goals, and carry out an evaluation plan that will tell them what works and what doesn’t. What should researchers be doing online? Does being social in the digital space really help? How do you mobilize your knowledge effectively? What sort of connections should you be making? Where do you start?

Let’s start at the beginning

You have a Twitter account and Facebook page. Your blog is ready to go live. Now what? Before you press send on the tweet, post to your Facebook page, or set your thoughts free on your blog, we need to think through your social media goals. Why are you in the digital space? What do hope to achieve? How do you know if the platforms you use and the content you share are performing successfully?

Figuring out the answer to these questions is not any different than the process you use to develop a communications or knowledge mobilization plan. You all ready know how to develop the plan, but are you ready to put it into action?

Step One: Self Assessment
Let’s figure out what factors impact your social activity. The first question to ponder is: What resources are available to you?

  • How much time do you have to actively engage in social media? Creating social profiles without being active on the platform hurts you rather than helps you. If you are going to create a Twitter presence, your followers deserve your attention. If you are going to spend the time to develop a Facebook page, your fans deserve to have a conversation with you. If you are going to send your thoughts and perspective into the world through a blog, your readers deserve quality posts that are developed to be interactive. Be sure you have time to acknowledge excellence within your network, share your insights, get to know your followers, and engage in a meaningful way.
  • Which social media networks are you familiar with? Do you have a Facebook profile, hangout on Google Plus, tweet about your work, blog about your achievements, share photos of your team, engage in conversations on LinkedIn? Think about the social platforms you personally use and how they might work together with those that your institution uses. It is important to think about your audience. Who are they? Where do they hang out online? Once you figure this out, go to where they are active. Each social network is different and those differences deserve to be celebrated and engaged with.
  • What type of content do you have access to and what content do you need to produce? Social media is all about sharing and accessing valuable content. Visuals are popular on most social media platforms and shared more than text-based pieces. Photos, websites, news articles, publications, videos, and infographics are examples of sharable content. It is time to take stock of what you already have and what you need to create. Can you turn that research report into an infographic that is easily shared and understood by your audience? Does your website house reports and publications that are of interest to your community? Are there topics you wish to explore? Do you have content available to share or do you need to create it?
  • Who will monitor what is being said on social media and track the social activity of your content? Think about who will manage the implementation of your strategy and the tools they will use to do so. Will you rely on Twitter statistics alone? Will you manage conversations and activity through a third party software like Hootsuite? Even though many of the tools that you will use are free of charge or low cost, the time it takes to implement your strategy effectively is not. Be sure to clearly account for the time you and your team will spend listening to online conversations, developing and sharing content, and thinking about the strategy that lies behind your online activity.

Understanding what you want to accomplish and how you will accomplish it is key to a successful social media strategy. Figuring out what resources are available to you, the most appropriate platforms, and your capacity for social media activity will help you make decisions that will become central to overall strategy.

We will further explore developing your social and digital strategy in future posts. Until then, please leave your thoughts and ask questions in the comment area below.

  • What social media platforms do you use?
  • Are your digital activities successful?
  • What works for you and what doesn’t? Why?


August 2014 #KMbChat: Community Knowledge Exchange

researchimpactResearchImpact-RéseauImpactRecherche (@researchimpact) is pleased to host the August 28, 2014 #KMbChat. We will tweet about Community Knowledge Exchange with @CKXdotorg in advance of their CKX Summit in November.

On August 28, 2014, we will join knowledge mobilizers from around the globe to explore issues of community-community knowledge exchange and compare and contrast those to community-campus knowledge exchange.

Charge up your twitter and join the conversation on Thursday August 28, 2014 at noon Eastern.

Find out more about the November 2014 CKX Summit.


#KMbChat LogoHave you missed a previous #KMbChat? Download transcripts of your favourite #KMbChat’s.

Find out more about joining a Tweetchat!

Do you have questions about this or past #KMbChats? Contact me at

July 2014 #KMbChat – #EngagedResearch and #KMb

#KMbChat LogoKnowledge mobilization does not slow down over the summer and neither does #KMbChat. Knowledge mobilizers from across the world gathered around #KMbChat, knowledge mobilization (#KMb), and #EngagedResearch on Twitter during our July 24, 2014 chat to discuss a recently published paper, Engaging Evaluation Research: Reflecting on the process of sexual assault/domestic violence protocol evaluation research (open access article).

Authors Anne Bergen and Mavis Morton guided knowledge mobilizers through a discussion that focused on community engagement that brought together a complex partnership to conceptualize, design, conduct, and communicate evaluation research on one community’s sexual assault and domestic violence (SADV Protocol. Participants discussed many topics that included:

  • the benefits of clarifying partner risks and benefits to better enable engaged research
  • enabling #KMb through promoting diversity
  • managing the shared decision making process – the challenges and benefits
  • training of academic and non-academic, community-based research partners

Let’s Keep the Conversation Going!

Download the July 2014 #KMbChat transcript (PDF) and let us know about your experiences with #EngagedResearch and #KMb.

July 2014 (noon EST) #KMbChat: #Engaged Research and #KMb

About the moderators

  • Dr. Anne Bergen (@Anne_Bergen) is a knowledge mobilization and evaluation consultant who helps individuals and organizations transform knowledge into action. Learn more at
  • Dr. Mavis Morton (@mortmave) is an association professor in the department of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Guelph. Her previous work includes 25 years with rural and urban community partners engaging in research, education, protocol development, advocacy, and service coordination on issues related to violence against and their children and other social justice issues.

More About #KMbChat

  • Have you missed a #KMbChat? Check out our archive page.
  • Are you researching social media as a knowledge mobilization tool? #KMbChat data is available to you. Email Bonnie Zink for more information.
  • Are you interested in moderating a future #KMbChat or have an idea about a future chat topic? Contact me and we’ll make it happen.

Five years as a #PWAC er

PWAC_5yearPinFive years is not an insignificant amount of time. It acts as a benchmark when we think about setting goals in our lives and careers. We complete undergraduate studies and enter the work force in five years. We can accomplish a lot in five years. The days, weeks, and months tick by at a rate that is faster than most of us like, especially when we enjoy what we do, how we do it, and why we do it.

I joined a professional writers organization five years ago. My hope was that I’d connect with like-minded writers, learn from them, and enjoy a creative and professional community that would help me reach my goals. My end goal was to become a working professional writer and, I’m proud to say, my hope became my reality.

What is PWAC?

The Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC) is a national organization that serves Canadian non-fiction freelance writers across the country. PWAC works to:

  • Promote the value, rights and interests of professional writers
  • Deliver resources and professional development opportunities to Canadian writers
  • Provide a critical bridge to connect writers with client (and with each other)

Who joins PWAC?

Professional writers of all shapes, sizes, and levels of experience make up the growing membership of PWAC. Over 600 freelance professionals from across Canada enjoy the benefits of this professional association. Many have magazine and newspaper backgrounds, some are published authors of books, and others have moved from writing to teaching about writing. All of PWAC’s members are established professionals who maintain that a PWAC membership provides them with the most value for membership dollars.

Why join PWAC?

Whether a beginning freelance writer or a seasoned professional, PWAC membership helps all writers reach their goals. PWAC membership offers:

  • Invaluable peer support that includes learning from each other, sharing of experiences – both positive and negative, and the opportunity to network with other writers
  • A press card that affords access to industry events, museums, and research
  • Discounts on health, home, dental and auto insurance as well as memberships with other writing organizations
  • Marketing and promotional opportunities
  • Access to professional development opportunities at low or no cost

Five years ago I held dear the hope of becoming a working professional writer. Over the course of these five years I have enjoyed many more benefits of my professional level membership:

  • Access to other professional writers who are enjoying a successful freelance lifestyle
  • Increased exposure as a professional writer
  • Access to a supportive and encouraging community that freely shares their experiences and many members willing to mentor me while I established expertise
  • The opportunity to lead Saskatchewan based members of PWAC as their interim President and member at large
  • The opportunity to help other writers establish themselves in the Saskatchewan market
  • The honour of helping to set PWAC’s agenda by participating in the annual general meeting as a voting member

As I look back on these past five years, I believe that my success as a working writer is directly due to my professional PWAC membership.

  • I learned from the experts and connected with mentors who genuinely wanted to help me succeed at my craft.
  • I developed the essential skills that freelancers need to build success.
  • I became more aware of my own talents and expertise and how sharing them could help other beginning writers.
  • I improved my writing.
  • I gained the confidence I needed to succeed as a freelance writer.

How to become a member of PWAC.

Are you interested in joining PWAC? Point your mouse over here and discover what membership level you are entitled to. Membership levels include:

  • Professional members (those currently working as a paid writer) enjoy access to all the benefits of PWAC, can hold chapter and national board of directors’ positions, and attend the annual general meeting as a voting member
  • Associate members (good choice for those re-entering the world of freelance) enjoy full access to PWAC benefits, but cannot hold chapter and national board of directors’ positions or attend the annual general meeting as a voting member
  • Student members (those currently in school full-time or within one year of graduation) access some of PWAC benefits at a reduced rate and, like associate members, cannot hold chapter and national board of director’s position or be delegates at the annual general meeting

Begin your journey to living the life you dream of by working to become a professional writer who loves what you do, why you do it, and how you do it.

Thank you to all the PWAC ers who have helped me along my journey to becoming a working professional writer. (You know who you are!)

  • Find out why my colleagues joined PWAC at

Effective Knowledge Mobilization Strategies for Summer

#KMbChat LogoMany of us are well into our summer schedules and the June 26, 2014 #KMbChat helped you share what you plan to do during over the slower summer months to mobilize your knowledge

Knowledge mobilizers discussed their best strategies summer strategies. Participants pondered the worst summer strategies. Everyone joined the conversation about how to continue their work during a time when colleagues, community partners, and policy makers are away on holidays.

How do you mobilize your knowledge over the summer?

June 26, 2014 (noon EST): Effective Knowledge Mobilization Strategies for Summer

Have you missed a #KMbChat? Check out our archive page.

Are you researching social media as a knowledge mobilization tool? #KMbChat data is available to you. Email Bonnie Zink for more information.

Are you interested in moderating a future #KMbChat or have an idea about a future chat topic? Contact me and we’ll make it happen.

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