COM0015- Assignment 5- Event Participation

20160704_211025_resizedJust prior to starting this course I took a class for a Diploma in Social Media Marketing. I registered because I thought it would be a good compliment to this, my Algonquin College course.

I was hoping to learn the ins and outs of pay per click advertising and other ways of using the many advertising options through social media. As it turned out the course was more of a theoretical nature regarding the various platforms and histories on each and the various functions of each.  The course instructor was Daniel Byrne, the Head of Social Media Education with the Shaw Academy.  He was very knowledgeable on the topic and thorough in his explanations and discussion.

While there were attendees from all over the world, I did manage to hear from a gentleman from B.C. who was also affiliated with the music industry. We have conversed through Facebook messenger a few times and have discussed various platforms that can be used. I was interested to learn that his artists- who are from the grunge/hard rock/screamo genre, tend to gravitate to Snapchat to share their posts. Considering the way that Snapchat works, I found that a little odd however, I feel much the same way about that genre of music.

I didn’t really leave the course with ideas per say, I did walk away with a greater theoretical understanding of the various platforms which was something I was lacking. One of the things that did stand out was something Daniel said which was “put your brand where the conversation is”.  It is a simple concept and rather obvious one when it comes to social media however, its one that can be forgotten.

Since attending the webinars, of course I am now on their mailing list and the course solicitations have been continuously rolling in. Their latest offer did grab my attention so I took action.  Next month I will begin a crash course in Digital Marketing.  I am currently working in Television sales and digital marketing is something that is relatively new to our sales team. My hope is that I will learn the theoretical workings so as to help our team succeed and meet their digital goals.

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COM0015:Blog #4 Out of the Box

For me, much of this course was new and unexpected. When asked about Social Media Marketing prior to the first class I probably would have responded with a focus on digital advertising and talking about pay per click rates and impressions rather than content management.

Using a platform such as Facebook to promote a cause seemed easy. It was all about “don’t say anything bad and beg everyone to like and share your page”… if only!

To effectively use multi platforms to relay your message effectively and the mere fact that Social Media Marketing was not only about selling tickets or product was a valuable lesson learned.

Over the length of this course I have seen on varying levels good social media management and poor social media management. I’ve noticed how some who are paid to promote and sell the idea of SMM truly have no idea how it works or how to use it.

The greatest tool I’ve learned is how to listen to social media and the applications to make it happen. Let’s face it, learning to use and using the tools are alot easier than creeping everyone’s facebook, and Twitter accounts!

I am most excited now about finding a cause to use my learning on. It’s always fun to play with new found skills but to use it to accomplish the final outcome, where you can validate to yourself, if no one else that you’ve learned something, is exciting.

COM0015:Post #3 Professional Networking Now and in the Future

For myself and my relationship with the music industry I have realized the value in knowing many people rather than just the “important” ones.

I have recently changed my networking strategy to cast a wider net and include all facets of the industry.

While I have always followed specific artists and industry personnel, I have started to follow the people within those camps to help me better understand how their organization works.

I have made it a habit when I am at an event where I am meeting people to immediately add them to my social network and include a comment relevant to our conversation to solidify their recognition of my name which right now is my brand.

Through this engagement it moves me from someone who random added me to an acquaintance. I also take a few minutes to look at recent posts and blogs to learn more about the person and their role in the industry. I try to engage on relative topics to build a closer relationship and share their upcoming events to show my support.

As we approach award and festival season, I will be paying specific attention to those who will be attending upcoming festival and events as to educate myself on valued or recent events. To do this I will set up a listening dashboard and include my selection of people.  By engaging online it will help me to engage when we meet face to face. Additionally it will help me to recognize those that are within their social circle. All of this will make me knowledgeable and topical and in the end will help me build my status in the industry.

COM0015: Post #2: Stong & Weak Organizations

COM0015: Post #2: Stong & Weak Organizations

In the world of social media, there are simply those who get it and those who don’t. Those who communicate and engage well and the other people.

One artist I have been watching and learning social media practices from is Codie Prevost.  In my opinion Codie has set the bar for reputation management, audience engagement, social listening and overall social media success. Codie has taken a significant amount of time to keep his fans and followers in touch with what he is doing and where he is performing.

Codie utilizes not only his Face book and Twitter accounts but he also uses Sound Cloud, You Tube, and even email newsletters to reach his audience.

Codie’s posts are always topical and relevant and more over, personal.

13428575_10153437724471330_6477471345318983566_n

“Was very lucky to spend Father’s Day with these two beautiful amazing ladies! Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads!” 

On holidays he will send greetings on behalf of his family which typically includes a photo of his wife and daughter. When working on a video or album he shares behind the scenes photos and videos. When a fan comments he replies 1005320_10151486719571330_583003704_nand acknowledges the person.

He has maximized his social media potential by holding contests on Face book and Twitter and each Tuesday holds the Tuesday Twitter Party where he engages with his audience in a Q & A.

On the opposite spectrum are the Saskatchewan Country Music Association and its chapters.

As the primary music association for the country music genre in Saskatchewan, they greatly lack when it comes to social media. SCMA.jpg

From what I can tell, there are multiple people managing this site however no one is truly “Managing” it but rather posting random things to it. The posts to the site are random and often self serving to the one posting or all together inaccurate. Within the organization are four individual chapters. Two of which are somewhat active while the other two rarely post anything. Of the two who are active, you can tell who the managers are as most of the posts are about the events and successes of that person. There are few if any engagements with posts and audience members. They are haphazardly using Face book as a bulletin board while seeing very little benefit.

By adopting a defined Social Media Strategy the SCMA could capitalize on their members and other industry relationships to build their reputation and credibility which in the end would lead to additional paid members or ticket sales.

Going forward I feel they should first appoint one person to manage their online presence. That individual should work with the board to define their Social media objectives. Personally, I think their first goal should be to follow their mandate and promote their artists. This is easily done through blogs, Face book features and simply sharing posts by the artists.

Secondly they should promote the value of membership. This could be done through traditional posts and statuses but would also include testimonial from award winners. This would bring value for the membership and credibility through affiliation with successful artists and members.

There are many ways the SCMA can benefit from social media if they devised a solid plan and consistent execution for that plan.

http://www.youtube.com/user/CodiePrevost

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/artist/codie-prevost/id111761108

http://twitter.com/#!/codieprevost

http://www.facebook.com/codieprevostmusic

https://www.facebook.com/Saskatchewan-Country-Music-Association-347721021915202/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/29404814462/

*Codie Prevost pictures courtesy of http://www.codieprevost.com

**SCMA logo courtesy of ww.scma.sk.ca

COM0015 – BLOG#1 Tools & Sources

COM0015 – BLOG#1 Tools & Sources

While my use of listening tools at this point has been minimal I have found two that I consider to be of value to me.

In the past I have used Hootsuite primarily because its user friendly. It allows me to access Face book and Twitter as well as LinkedIn which are the primary platforms I use. It also monitors in real time so the information is always current and topical.

While my needs at this point do not exceed the capacity of the free version, the tool also has two advanced versions which would allow me to expand and grow along with my needs.

I’ve also in a small capacity used Social Mention.

It has allows me to use keywords, sources or hashtags to search the info I needed. Again it’s very user friendly and free which of course is of favor to me.

Since my interest is the music industry, specifically country music, I turn to Facebook and Twitter for my news sources. These platforms are the primary platforms used by artists and labels and industry people. By monitoring specific labels or icons in the industry I can keep track of the people and activities within the industry. In the beginning Facebook seemed to be the primary however I’ve seen a dramatic shift to Twitter in the last few years.

If I am researching someone, I turn to YouTube or Soundcloud. Both of these platforms give me examples of what the artist has to offer.  Again not something that can be easily monitored however in the music industry it’s a very valuable tool.

When I’m not trying to stay abreast on the who’s doing what in the music industry, and having some down time, I spend a fair amount of time on Facebook . It’s my personal news source. I can always discover something new. Whether it be finding out someone is moving or keeping in touch with old friends, it’s the first thing I look at when I wake up and the last place I visit before bed.

My other recreational platform is Snapchat. Admittedly with this platform I do more reviewing than sharing.  It was my son who created my profile and insisted I be a part of this network.  Since that time I have used it more so to see what he is up to with his friends.

Over the last few years I’ve been assessing how I want to spend the latter half of my working years. Knowing full well that I wasn’t interested in staying in my former position I started the search for my next career.  After searching numerous job sites, I met my new best friend in LinkedIn.  This platform has been fabulous as it has allowed me to connect with local business people in a casual way and has made me visible to business people that I never would have thought to reach out to.    In fact, it was due to LinkedIn and a chance occurrence that I landed my new position.  It just so happened there was a glitch in the computer system at my new company and my resume was lost in cyber space. I had added the Department manager on LinkedIn following applying for the job.  A mutual friend was speaking with him and decided to put in a good word when he informed her he had no idea what she was talking about.  The following morning, a Saturday I might add, I got a message from him through LinkedIn stating he had not received my resume however after reviewing my profile and experience he would like me to forward my complete resume and come for an interview.

So if you were to ask me if I am active on Social Media I would probably say not really. But, when I look at the number of times I click on one of the above icons in a day, one would wonder how I manage to get any work done!

Facebook_icon  https://www.facebook.com/candace.finch.3

thCM00DFM2  https://ca.linkedin.com/in/candace-finch-0a236789

snapchat  mommabirdy123

 

Comm 0014: Blog #7

Of this entire program, this segment has been my favorite.

I am a writer by nature. It’s one thing that I can do and, I think, do well.

My greatest take from this class has been to share your story. Don’t be afraid to let people know where you come from and the things that make you tick. I think much of the time business owners get too wrapped up in the professional world and forget about the human element in their advertising.

Quite often, a business has a great story, a great reason for being in business, a story that has the potential to influence a customer’s decision to support the company and work with them. This lesson showed me that it’s OK to let people see that as it will help them to relate to the owner and thereby support the business efforts.

In the digital world, the client’s reaction time is quite fast so if you are not appealing to the audience, you are wasting time.

For myself, I will to tell the casual and feel good type of stories. For me these are the stories that relate to the consumer and tug at the heart strings! I also like to present a light hearted tone when creating general content. In my opinion it speaks to the personality of the business person to where they are approachable and genuine. I do feel it is necessary to use the business tone from time to time when an issue or topic is perhaps a little more serious.

Besides, I’m in favor of catching more flies with honey than vinegar and all the analogies like that!

Com0014: Blog #6 My Story


Summertime always meant going to the cabin and endless trips to the Melville Beach store when I was a growing up.

Every morning we would rise with the sun and sneak out of the cabin to catch up with Grandpa on his way to the beach to fish. Cast after cast and no luck we’d head over to the store and wait for the owner to unlock the doors.

I can still smell the muffins fresh out of the oven and the lavender perfume the owner’s wife would wear.  Every day rain or shine it was the same; we’d dangle our feet as we sat on the “spinny” stools by the counter and eat our treat while Grandpa told us his plans for the day.

Our days were full of swimming and sandcastles on the beach with our “summer friends” with a number of freezies and homemade popsicles thrown in to help us cool down.  As the sun went down, we would get ready for bed. In our pajamas we would make one more trip to the store for a small ice cream with sprinkles.   We’d finish off the night curled up in a lawn chair listening to stories around the campfire.

So much has changed since those days.  Lives got busier, my feet no longer dangle from the spinny chairs, and it’s near impossible to find a small ice cream cone for twenty-five cents.

Yet, as the summers go by, I see similar memories being made as a new generation of Grandpas visit our beach store and new sandy feet dangle from our spinny chairs at the counter. Each morning the muffins come out of the oven and I open the doors just before nine o’clock.

These are the traditions and memories that take you back. They are the reason I came back and will always greet you with a smile at the Melville Beach Store.

Comm0014: Blog #5 Personal Brand

I`ve never had an easy time talking about myself, specifically the positive elements of me. If you ask me for a list of flaws, we could talk for hours.

Recently I`ve had to practice this skill as I put myself on the market for a new job. As I was asked so many times in interviews, if I was to describe myself in a matter of words, I would probably have to say I am genuine, loyal, and comical with a side of sarcasm.

In a letter of reference a former co worker provided for me, he describes me as an above average and diligent employee who is able to speak fluent “salesman“. In my profession, speaking and understanding “salesman“ is a big deal! Another of my former salesmen told my new employer, “you`ve really screwed us over by taking this one, she`s a keeper, take care of her“.

When I sat back and thought about what I had to offer a business and what would set me apart or at least on par with others was that I was a hard worker, someone that could be depended on to get the job done when it needed to be done.

I like to think outside the box, even if it means looking at things up side down to gain that different prospective. I like to try new things especially when I`m told I can`t or it won`t work. I believe “the road less travelled“ sometimes leads to great things.

I am passionate; I throw myself into my work, my hobbies, and my projects. I believe that if I`m going to put my name on something it`s going to be the best representation of myself and it would have to be something I`m proud of and stand by. Half enough is NEVER good enough.

I believe that family always comes first and there is nothing more important or valuable than family. Even when you want to knock their heads together you gotta love them.

I am genuine. I won`t tell you something because I think it`s what you want to hear and I won`t embellish things to make them more glamorous than they are. My Dad always told me that if I told the truth I`d have less to remember in life, and I`ve stood by that. That advice proved to be my downfall when it came to selling the Tooth fairy, Easter Bunny and Santa to my kids!

In the end though, I am me. You can take me or leave me, I`ll be the same either way.

COM0014: BLOG#4 B2C Case Study: My Name is Candace And I am Addicted to Eyewear

Like millions of people in the world, I am a glasses wearer. The thing that sets me apart however is that I have over 30 pair of glasses. This is all to the credit of Zenni Optical’s B2C strategy.

Zenni has effectively embraced the social media B2C concept by using common platforms as a means of acquiring new customers which in turn lead to sales revenue.

This company uses Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/ZenniOptical) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/zennioptical) as a vessel to promote their product lines and highlight new trends. Many of their posts are both shared and commented on by customers which shows they are reaching and engaging with their audience in addition to consumer to consumer engagement.  While most comments are positive, I have seen the odd unhappy customer respond. These have always been answered in a prompt and productive manner indicating they are listening and acting on the feedback.

Their Pinterest site (https://www.pinterest.com/zennioptical/) has been dedicated to educating their clients and prospective clients on their products. For example, how to get a good fit when ordering on line, current style trends, or how to personalize your frames.

Their Instagram account (https://www.instagram.com/zennioptical/) is, in short, a photo album of all the photos displayed on their website, Facebook, and Twitter sites. Even though their information and photos are not new, they are still another opportunity for them to be found.

I found their YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/ZenniOptical) interesting as I would never have thought to look for an optical place on YouTube.  It features educational videos on glasses and the craftsmanship that goes into creating a pair of glasses. It also hosts a video of their partnership with Airlifting, a program which supports homeless, disabled, or disadvantaged artists sell their artwork.  All these videos show insight into the company and the values they uphold. This in itself may not directly create sales but for those who carry the same values, it may encourage them to use Zenni over another company.

In addition to all the Social Media platforms that they use, they also maintain a blog and utilize Email Marketing all of which contain links to their main website for ease of shopping access. They have also acquired paid online advertising so their product is visible on various sites and searches.

Based on my knowledge and experience, Zenni Optical’s strategy for using social media to market their product is highly effective. Their products are visible throughout social media, their product is affordably priced and of reasonable quality and their customer service and willingness to support their product and clients is favorable.  My supporting documents can be found in the attached photo!

My Zenni addiction... 37 pair and growing!

My Zenni addiction… 37 pair and growing!

 

COM0014: BLOG#3 Target Audiences

Saskatoon-logo 2013

The Country Music Association of Saskatoon is a regional organization under the umbrella of the provincial Saskatchewan Country Music Association. They are a community who have embraced social media to grow their membership, promote their events and artists as well as raise funds throughout the year.

Their membership demographic is fairly broad. Approximately 40% would be from the 18- 30 year old age group. These are the university students and young adults who are trying to launch their music career and are actively performing and promoting their performances via Facebook and Twitter. At the top end of this demographic are the young parents who are juggling raising a family with their music career. While they have spend a number of years in the music business,  they are in the beginning stages of their career as several of them have begun to reinvent themselves as an adult performer and musician.  Regardless of their age or experience, this is the group that is very active on social media and do the most to engage with their fans. Many of them not only use Facebook and Twitter but they also have stations on Spotify and Soundcloud to share and promote their music.

The next largest demographic would fall between 30-60 years of age making up about 30% of the membership. These are the seasoned artists who have either found their success and are busy touring and performing constantly or are taking the stage simply for the love of the music. These artists again utilize social media for their benefit. The ones who are very active on stage are also more active with social media. They post performance videos and photos, use the events feature on each platform to grow their audience.  The less active, tend to be more responsive to other’s posts by sharing, liking and commenting with their support. They do however, promote their own events but in a less aggressive manner.

Youth, those up to 18 years in age, would make up approximately 20%. These are the ones who are primarily in the “dreaming of being a star” stage. They are the supporters of the other artists watching and learning from their mentors.

The final 10% is closely related to the youth because they are the Grandparents who are supporting their grandchildren or are the first generation performers who no longer crave the spotlight but would rather guide the future generations. These tend to be the least active on social media however they do follow the artists and make note of events that are taking place.

10750409_10152337615816330_6376517893788448575_oOff all the artists I have looked at and taken note of, the one that I feel has utilized social media to his full advantage is Codie Prevost. In addition to being having channels on Soundcloud, Spotify, and YouTube, he personally manages his Facebook accounts. He also uses Twitter for more than simple tweets about shows and personal thoughts, each Tuesday he hosts a Party in which he interacts with his fans and shares personal insight into his career. You should really check him out!

https://www.youtube.com/user/CodiePrevost

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/artist/codie-prevost/id111761108

https://twitter.com/codieprevost

https://www.facebook.com/codieprevostmusic