Social Media in Japan [a #resource]

Late last year someone asked about Social Media Usage in Japan in a LinkedIn group I’m in. The request was from a girl in the US researching for a University paper she was working on. She asked a bunch of questions about Social Media use in Japan, some quite subjective and many the questions Marketing & Market Entry folks would, and do, pay good money for.

Wanting to be ‘ever helpful’ I gave her some ideas on where to start. While I’m no expert in Social Media or Japan, I am active in some Social Media channels & do have a large network here, as well as some solid ideas I think, for leveraging Search/Research, the Web & Social channels.

So as well as advising her that she might benefit from finding someone who is a native or near native level Japanese speaker to help her Google & research in Japanese, here are some People, Links and Information I shared with her to kick start her own research: *I’ve added & edited a little from the original post


Follow Dr. Serkan Toto, better still, give him a reason to connect/meet & talk to you:

  1. Web
  2. TC
  3. Twitter!/serkantoto

Follow Neal Schaffer, better still, give him a reason to connect/meet & talk to you:

  1. Web (Japan Search)
  2. Twitter!/NealSchaffer/
  3. Maximize Social Business in Japan
  4. Neal’s Japanese Language Blog specific to Japan Social Media

Follow some other people & groups active in Social Media here: (and See LinkedIn search below to find more)

Mashable rules

Mashable (Japan Search)

LinkedIn search is also your friend – so do what 90% of people don’t do on Social Media; proactively reach out and talk to people:
LinkedIn Advanced Search for “Social Media” (in Japan)
[Note: Read my ideas on how to do this effectively here – “do the hard yards”]

The guys dealing with Japan, Tech, Social media at Business Insider write good stuff. Here’s just one guy & you can ask him questions from his profile page:

  • Jay Yarow

SlideShare – Second to none the best place for a quick & dirty run down on the stats and key points on ANY subject:

  • SlideShare (Japan Social Media Search)

G is for Google …through to lots of stuff (just a start):

[ BTW, to get good at Search, a great place to start is Boolean Black Belt (Don’t let the focus on Sourcing/Recruitment distract you – brilliant knowledge shared by Glen Cathey here) ]

Aggregators are great:

  • Daily Social (Japan Search)
  • Alltop (Japan & Social Media Search)

Q&A sites are also great. Besides LinkedIn Answers, try asking the right questions & following the right people at:

Great Article on what Q&A Sites are, from the perspective of SEO and why Q&A sites good for it ]

Opposing opinions on Nuclear Energy & the future

As an Australian*, living in Japan at the time of the Tohoku Earthquake & Tsunami in March of 2011, with no plans to go anywhere at this stage a year later, I have read a lot  in this past year about Nuclear Power, why we use it and it’s risks/dangers.
  * Australia has no NPP’s, but are mining & supplying a lot of Uranium

I’ve also read a lot about where we are all heading, with the interconnected Economy that has evolved across the world and that we all so rely on continuing ‘as it always has’. I’ve been studying, reading, listening and watching everything I come across about how the Economy, Energy & the Environment are not separate issues – how they cannot be separated from each other when we discuss the impact that might be felt by the average person, if problems in any one or more of these areas should occur.

So when it comes to Nuclear Power and whether it is good, bad, necessary or not necessary – I have formed these two conflicting views, which in the end may be moot:

1. There is no such thing as Alternative Energy – we’re going to have to use every possible known energy source, discover and develop new & better ones, more efficient ways to live off of our consumption of any energy source available, if we are going to maintain anywhere near current worldwide usage (let alone emerging economies & population growth!). There is no way around this & the impact may well be felt in our lifetimes.

Article related to this opinion:
Why don’t we ditch nukes, AND coal?

To emphasize this, almost everyone I speak to & most common online theorization focuses on the fact that humans have always been resourceful and will invent/discover new sources of Energy & continue to improve technology in sourcing it, producing it and consuming it – the vast majority of us humans that actually think about where Energy comes from, when all is said & done, are pinning our hopes on this!

2. The next world Conflict (or ‘it’s too late anyway‘) – when, not if, partial world conflict from the pursuit of energy occurs, which country will hesitate to blow up Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs) in opposing countries?

If there is geopolitical disorder, conflict between major powers; energy source countries & highest consumer countries, and/or social disorder on a large scale for any reason, in countries that have NPP’s – who will keep the lights on and the Cooling occurring, for the decades required?

Does anyone really believe the human race has advanced to a level that world conflict, or conflict between one or more nations with significant armed forces & strike capacity, won’t ever happen again?

These are my concerns about the use of Nuclear Power, over and above concerns of the danger they pose from more ‘mundane’ accidents, like say building them on fault-lines & in countries with undeniable history & threat of Earthquakes & Tsunami (!).

Of course these too are close to moot points for most of us as we don’t have much influence as individuals and in regards to NPP’s that exist – it’s too late. Even if the world decided to shut down the 435 existing NPP’s and cancel the 63 under construction tomorrow*, it would take decades to shut them down and for decades more, we’d need to keep the Fuels cool – many decades.
like Japan did, while they waited/still wait for enough money to flow to decision makers to ‘allow them’ to be switched back on – or it becomes obvious without them the country will go broke &/or catastrophically regress (impacting the general populations way of life no doubt.)

On that basis then, I can conclude reluctantly that we will probably continue using Nuclear Power and we have to. We can only hope that we move to retire the oldest, dirtiest & most dangerous NPP’s (and begin longterm cooling operations for the decades worth of spent fuel), build only the safest technology available new NPP’s and, like 80% of people reading this probably believe will happen – no doubt in their minds, work tirelessly to identify sources of energy and technologies that deliver us energy that is clean and can sustain the world as it expands – before Energy (all core resources we consume actually) and/or Environmental impact of the way we live & consume our planet, impacts what increasingly looks like a vulnerable and fragile world economy – an impact which would simply means a drastic change to your, my and our families safety, security and the quality of life we are able to enjoy.

What do you think?

Where the rubber hits the road with LinkedIn, Social Media

Why are you interested in Business Networking at all?

The mindset that will help you on LinkedIn more than any other I believe, is that it’s an Active sport, not just a Passive ‘post & hope’ kind of thing, or worse, a place to self promote, a broadcast platform or a half baked attempt at SEO/Website traffic generation.

Sure you need a profile that puts up no Red Flags when people click on it for a 7 second look on their smart phone, that presents you how you want to be perceived & if you’re job hunting or selling something, tells effectively who you are, what you’re capable of & how you can help others.

Beyond that though, my philosophy (and I implore you) stop worrying about all the things outside your control on LinkedIn and Social Media like ‘tweaking your profile, 100%!’ & ‘being found’, and do the hard yards (which just means take a bit of time & effort) and do three things consistently:

1. Regularly ask yourself and be able to articulate what you want out of business Networking. Never lose sight of the fact you are in fact just Networking toward a real & defined goal. Base all your business networking related activity on this.
2. Research, research, research: Industries, Companies, roles in Companies, People in those roles, People connected to People. I estimate 80-90% of people don’t do this at all, let alone effectively (excluding the most proactive of business development professionals, and any recruiter worth his salt of course).
3. Proactively reach out to people in a non-threatening, not ‘all about me’ way, don’t sell anything, just ‘Network’ to start with. Like you’re meeting, casually but professionally in person for the first time.

Multiply the above exponentially with ‘Massive Action’ – don’t do it 10-20 times, do it 100-200 times, do it constantly. Coupled with being very clear & concise how people can help you, over time & at the right time, you will grow exactly the type of network of people, real people with real relationships focused on how you can help each other, that you want to (see point 1.)

LinkedIn, Social Media for business I suspect, is that simple, that misunderstood.

My CHALLENGE to GoodPeople Japan members

Something I recently posted in a discussion thread in the Business In Japan open group on LinkedIn which I’m main admin for, to encourage people to interact more with each other around the concept of ‘Business In Japan’, is something I’d also like to suggest to GoodPeople Japan members. It’s even more relevant for GPJ because a large percent of GPJ members are in Japan and so have more of a chance to meet up in person!

So few people actually have a strategy for using LinkedIn, so this is just one idea how to start building your connections here in Japan and on LinkedIn.


Find 5 interesting people in the GPJ group, contact them publicly in a group discussion format OR privately through LinkedIn Group member contact permissions (no need to post it publicly unless you want to, of course – it’s your choice, your contact!), or email if you have it, saying you came across their profile in GoodPeople Japan.

Mention their profile was interesting for X, Y and/or Z reasons and you’re also reaching out generally, to make a connection around the common interest of ‘Connecting with GoodPeople In Japan’. Before meeting in person, which I highly recommend, why not use LinkedIn to learn a little more about each other, your possible mutual interests in Japan and get some ideas about how you might help each other or any of your connections.

LinkedIn Personal Plus Account

(via @nealschaffer)

I’d like to share with people who are avid users of LinkedIn, and interested in having more information and resources available to them without having to upgrade to a monthly paid membership, signing up to one of the three monthly Upgrade Options available to LinkedIn users and power users.

This is a ‘Personal Plus’ account which I trialled for free some time back. (LinkedIn gave some/all members a free 1 month trial back in 2008 I think it was, though the Service has been around since 2005).

Here’s a Blog Post from Neal Schaffer, founder of Windmill Networking, about it from November last year, though just as relevant today and indeed Neal mentioned it at a Social Media workshop he held in Tokyo last night (Nov 17th, 2010):

The LinkedIn Personal Plus Paid Account

The only difference with the current state of the Service to Neal’s Blog post, is that it is now USD $99.50 per year. (Automatic unless terminated)

I also share many links I feel will be of interest to GoodPeople, on Twitter: @GoodPeopleJapan

[2010] Drop-in format Food, Drink & GPJ Networking Bonenkai

With the busy Bonenkai season upon us, it can be hard to organize our schedules after work or even a set date & time.
Lets face it, it can also be an expensive time of year…

Therefore for 2010 the GoodPeople Japan Bonenkai will be an easy ‘DROP-IN when you like, stay as long or as little as you like, all day Saturday flexible format!  What do you think? Leave a comment!

UPDATE: GoodPeople Japan member (a member since I launched in Jan 2009) Koichi Okubo, started his own Business Networking Group this year: Japadamy and we’re going to make this…

A joint Bonenkai between GoodPeople Japan and Japadamy!!

The concept of Japadamy is to mix business oriented people who want to do business with Japan, and once a month Okubo-san has a great event where Japanese people perhaps less confident with their English, can meet Foreigners who speak some level of Business Japanese.

Okubo-san will invite members of Japadamy to come along and mix with ‘GoodPeople’ and we can all grow our networks in Japan! I’m of course a member of Japadamy, have attended a number of his events and highly recommend GoodPeople also attend.

WHAT: GoodPeople, 2010 ‘Drop-in 12pm-8pm’ Bonenkai! [GoodPeople Japan members & invited guests]
GoodPeople Japan’s flexible event format ‘business & social Networking Bonenkai’ (End of Year Party).
This format is especially designed for you to be able to make the effort to attend and meet some GoodPeople Japan members, no excuses. Can’t make 12pm because you’re with the family? Come for dinner (there’ll be a nijikai I expect too!) Can’t make dinner? Drop in for a beer, a snack and a chat between 2pm & 6pm!
DATE: Saturday, December 18, 2010
TIME(s): COME ANYTIME between 12pm-8pm+
  • 12pm – 2pm LUNCH
  • 2pm to 6pm ‘Pay As You Go’
  • 6pm – DINNER
  • 8pm ~ NETWORKING (nijikai also probable)
Taj Akasaka (meet there)
Links to MAP, Gurunabi & [pdf map]
2-12-33 Akasaka, Minato Ku, Tokyo
Tel. (03) 6234-0888
How much?: Between Zero Yen and 3,000 yen, plus any drinks or extras off the menu you order!
If you turn up or stay for both between 12pm and 2pm or 6pm and 8pm, you will need to pay just 1-2,000 yen for the buffet(s) that will be available during those times whether you plan to eat or not, to be fair to Ami the owner (see details below)

R.S.V.P. here if you’re a definite

If not above, please R.S.V.P. using the event links at LinkedIn (ideally) or on Facebook (if nothing else) also, especially if you’re still a ‘maybe/interested’.

Details: Here’s some info about what to expect for food & drink

12:00~14:00 LUNCH (Buffet Format) @ 1000yen per person
14:00~18:00 SNACKS (limited choices) @ 500yen plates
18:00~20:00 DINNER (Buffet Format) @ 2000yen per person
20:00~ NETWORKING (no rush to leave Ami says, though we may find somewhere nearby later also)

Salads, Soups, Curries, Papadums, Rice/Rice Pilaf, Chicken Biriyani (served with Raita), Naan, Spicy Potato Balls & Wedges, Vegetable Pakoras, Chicken Lollipops, Eggplant Fritters, Pizza Naan and Desserts!

What’s being served, depends on when you arrive and what time you stay until!

12:00~20:00 The bar will operate throughout the day. GoodPeople can buy their drinks by paying cash at the bar counter.

Draft Beer 330ml: 500yen*
House wine glass: 500yen*
Select Cocktails: 700yen
Bottled Beer (Kingfisher, Corona, Asahi Black): 650yen
Draft Sour (Lemon/Grapefruit): 500yen
Umeshu/Shochu: 500yen
Soft Drinks (Oolong Tea, Ginger Ale, Coke, OJ etc): 400yen

(Plus many other drinks also available from a la carte menu at regular prices.)
*BeersForBooks ‘1 book’ donation included! All other drinks voluntary donation tins will be available

UPDATE on how it went:

Fantastic! We had a great group of people attend, that started with just one table-full pre-lunch at around 12pm to about 35 at it’s peak pre-dinner at 6pm and 10 people staying or turning up for the nijikai/2nd party around 9pm through to 10.30pm-ish. Perhaps around 60 people throughout the day, many more than who had confirmed. We made over 100 books for even though it wasn’t promoted as a B4B event also.
Thanks one and all!

Friday 11/19: GoodPeople & Windmill Networking Groups Joint Event

LinkedIn Groups GoodPeople Japan & Windmill Networking are holding a Joint Event…

What: An Izakaya Club Networking Dinner
Where: Ebisu
When: Friday November 19th

Proposed by GPJ member Daniele Cereghino, also a member of Neal Schaffer’s ‘Windmill Networking / Izakaya Club’, here’s a joint event you’ll want to RSVP early, to ensure a spot.

From Daniele:

GoodPeople is known for the high quality and the focus of its meetings: unlike huge events for collecting cards, I personally appreciate the real strong spirit and commitment of all the members for helping each other.

Some of GoodPeople members already know Neal Schaffer, not only as an expert if not evangelist of LinkedIn, Social Media networking & Social Media marketing, but also as a very good person: he is the founder of Windmill Networking and the Linkedin Group of the same name, where members follow the same philosophy (some of us share both memberships). Based in US these days, Neal visits Japan often, having lived & worked here for many years.

There will be a meeting in Ebisu Garden Place, Nov. 19th, in an Italian Restaurant MERCATO DELLA PASTA (in Yebisu Garden Place, Ebisu) that will reserve a space for us, offering a set of Italian food and drink with a nomihodai formula: Good food, good drink, good topic and GoodPeople !

Please find all the LinkedIn Event (RSVP most appreciated) and details here:

Neal, Jason and I are sure it will be a success, especially for people who want to learn more about how to get the most from social networks, leveraging on Neal’s experience and advices.” ~ Daniele

GoodPeople Japan 2010 Bonenkai (Sat 12/18) & Shinnenkai (TBC FEB)

BONENKAI: Saturday December 18th A long, standing Lunch or Dinner (now confirmed)

I’m working on a Bonenkai and am thinking of Saturday 12/18 (EDIT: This has been confirmed see this post) and I’m leaning towards a ‘drop-in’ format either a long lunch or early to late dinner – what are your thoughts? Please email me or contact through GoodPeople Japan group on LinkedIn! Proposed venue I’ll be checking out is from GoodPeople Japan member Ami Shukla and his famous ‘The True Taste of India’ restaurant Taj Akasaka [pdf map]

UPDATE on how it went: Fantastic! We had a great group of people attend, that started with just one table-full pre-lunch at around 12pm to about 35 at it’s peak pre-dinner at 6pm and 10 people staying or turning up for the nijikai/2nd party around 9pm through to 10.30pm-ish. Perhaps around 60 people throughout the day, many more than who had confirmed. We made over 100 books for even though it wasn’t promoted as a B4B event also. Thanks one and all!

SHINNENKAI: ~~Being Rescheduled to February~~ (exact date yet to be confirmed)

I’ve identified a Shinnenkai location and am having to put the date forward due to the fact I’m heading back to Australia for a couple of weeks. Venue is El Tres ‘Rest Gallery’ (Cafe) in Gotanda (141-002, Higashi Gotanda 2-9-11, 03-6450-3356), in FEBRUARY

The reason I’d like to shoot for a Weekend is to again have more of a drop-in, stay a couple of hours and still have morning/lunch or evening/Dinner free for other plans or family/weekend commitments.

El Tres and the young manager/owner Murasawa-san, allows us to have 50-100 people come throughout the day (prob max. 80ppl at one time) and allows me to book the Venue PLUS Finger Food, for a set price, and ALLOWS BYO for drinks!

He has a Wireless Mic & a Projector so at the least I might give people who want to to do a 2-5min introduction of “who they are, what they do, how you can help them and how they can help you…” Voluntarily, only if you want to.

Please let me know your thoughts through any channel.

El Tres, Gotanda

Viral Fish Market @ Andy’s AMAZING Fish Restaurant!!

The next GoodPeople evening was proposed and is being coordinated by Mark from TradeLikeTom and is all set for:

THURSDAY 28th OCTOBER and it will double as a Beers for Books event as well!

Viral Fish Market | Where Fish meets Viral Marketing will be hosted at one of Tokyo’s most popular izakayas, called Andy’s by many (Shin-Hinomoto is its official name) which is conveniently located under the train tracks at Yurakucho.

UPDATE: We’ve secured a Set meal course available to everyone who comes for the 7.30pm Dinner Networking & Beers for Books @ 2,500 JPY p.p. (all going to Andy for the food – no cost for the event), A REAL BARGAIN and 100yen from every beer, also the same from cocktails and some other drinks will also go to Beers For Books!


From 6.00 – 7:30pm The main topic open for discussion is VIRAL MARKETING which we expect to evolve and lead to other interesting subjects such as;
– social media marketing
– search engine optimization
– community management
– web marketing

With the support of the various organizers we hope to attract a diverse and dynamic audience that can really benefit from each others presence.

From 7:30-10pm its dinnertime at Andy’s and he’ll be donating 100 yen on every drink accompanying your dinner orders towards Beers for Books. Andy’s is hugely popular and reservations are a MUST (see above!)

From 10pm – Close
its drinker’s time so drop on by late for a cold one or three and thank Andy for hosting us! No reservations required.

Between 10.00-10.30pm we’ll draw the winning raffle tickets and present the evenings prizes.

For those of you new to Beers for Books, the concept is simple: For every drink you have, 100 yen will be donated to Room to Read and that buys a treasured book for children via Room to Read.

In summary, we think this event really has all the ingredients to be a night to look back and remember – GoodPeople, GoodFish, GoodConversation, GoodBeer GoodCharity & GoodNight!

Don’t miss it!

(Text URL:

For RSVP this event is also posted on the Beers for Books homepage, on Facebook and as an event on LinkedIn for those of you who may wish to extend the invitation to others, or share this URL on Twitter: GoodPeople | Viral Fish Market | Beersforbooks event Thu 10/28

GGG is tonight (Fri Aug. 20th)! Gotanda GoodPeople Gyouza night


Friday August 20th, from 8pm ~ 10.30pm
(meet there, 5mins from Gotanda Station)

Hakata gyoza 603 gotanda
KANO Building B1F, 1-25-1 Shinagawa Nishigotanda

LinkedIn group thread:
Restaurant links:

Around 10-12 people will attend (10 confirmed) around the common theme of “Connecting GoodPeople” in Tokyo…. and enjoying delicious Gyouza!

As yet undecided if we’ll go for a Tabe/Nomihoudai course, I’ve booked initially for Ala Carte. Gurunavi have a special for 3,500 yen p.p., we’ll see if there’s consensus on arrival.

“Hakata’s famous gyoza dumpling specialist…. bite-sized gyoza dumplings are made from Ikisan Pork, raised with care in western Fukuoka.
They’re joined by our Black Pork gyoza, made with Japan’s finest Satsuma Yagoro black pork, for a double attraction.
You won’t believe the great taste of our salt sauce!! Made with specialty ingredients, each one is better than the last!”

“Connecting GoodPeople” Micro-networking events

   (Members & guests only)

GoodPeople Japan micro-events are an environment where people can really get to know each other, be clear on how people can help them, and understand how they can help others.

Why don’t you propose one, and I’ll help you make it happen!