COM0015 – Blog # 4 – Out of the Box

One of the big problems that occur when you work for a museum is to think outside of the box. By box, I mean the actual museum. Their business model is derived from getting people to come to them and not the other way around.

Prior to the pandemic, there were very little efforts to develop outreach campaigns geared to keep us relevant to our visitors and members. With no other option but to close down for an extended period of time, our upper management realized that we had to “get with the program” and create virtual activities, webinars, and virtual camps.

Fast forward one year, we have now been able to create a stronger bond with our visitors and members by remaining relevant to them. We even received praises for our social media efforts and the quality of our virtual activities. We have demonstrated our resilience and our ability to look for the positive in less than ideal circumstances.

COM0014 – Blog # 7 – Personal Reflection

I have been on Facebook for 16 years, on Instagram and Twitter for 8 years, LinkedIn for 2 years, and on Tik Tok for 1 year. At first impression, you would think that I am well versed in the social media world by using the major platforms that are currently performing well. You would not be further from the truth.

Credit by Tracy LeBlanc

Three years ago, social media for me was a medium to openly speak my mind online. I thought that I was doing a pretty good job at it too until I found myself doing it as a job. Prior to taking this course, I thought that I could apply the same tactics that I was using privately to a business. Nothing could have been further from the truth!

I came to realize that when someone is using their personal social media accounts to express themselves, they are less restricted to choosing their words because they are interacting with their followers whom are usually their friends. So if I am pissed about something and I start ranting about it on my Facebook page, I will always get sympathetic (even supportive) responses.

Social media for a business is, like for personal accounts, an extension of themselves, but that is where the similarities end. It is my job to be online to monitor the reaction of our followers and provide the best response that reflects the values of my employer, even if that response goes against my own views.

The Social Media courses have greatly helped me improve my social media abilities to become an expert and really use each platform in more efficient ways. I am now able to better advise others and even improve the way that I even use my personal accounts.

COM0014 Blog #6 – What is your favorite customer story?

Five years ago, I was doing a sleepover activity for a group of 30 Girl Guides and 5 leaders at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum. The group arrived at 6 pm and, since it was still daytime, I decided to start their activities close to the windows. 30 minutes into the programming, the fire alarm rang. Guided by my training and instincts, I quickly rounded up the group and left with them via the main doors and brought them to the collection hangar that was next to the museum.

Once we entered the collection hangar, the girls started to ask me questions about why their programming was stopped and what were we doing in another building. After leading them to the far wall of the hangar, I sat them down and quietly explained to the group that what we had just experience was the safe way to respond to a fire alarm inside a building. I went through the different steps of exiting a building during a fire alarm with them and answered all of their questions. Afterwards, I gave them a small tour of the collection hangar during which time they learned a lot about some of our hidden gems.

After 40 minutes inside the hangar, I checked to see if the fire fighters had come to take care of the situation. As it turns out, it was a false alarm. Without missing a bit, I continued the rest of the programming with the girls by offering them a condensed version to make sure that they would get to do all of the activities (It is very important for Girl Guides and Scouts to cover all of the activities of the programs that we cover to obtain their badges).

A month after, I received a letter of thank you from the whole group that had attended my sleepover program that day. The leaders gave me high praises and the girls learned a valuable lesson in what to do whenever there is a fire alarm.

COM0015 – Blog 3 – Professional Networking Now and in the Future

Photo by fauxels from Pexels

My main strategy for developing my professional network in person has been via word of mouth. I have been in the museum industry for the last 16 years and worked for 4 Canadian national museums as “Front Line Staff”! Over time I have met a lot of people whether they were visitors or professionals. This has allowed me to develop an organic network.

As for online, my network as mostly been organic too. My go-to social media platform is Facebook. Having been a member of Facebook since 2006, I have gathered a long list of friends (more than 2000) mostly composed of the connections that I did while I was meeting people as part of the “Front Line Staff” and past school colleagues.

Photo by Brett Jordan from Pexels

I realized that I should start having a stronger presence on LinkedIn, especially since it is the social media platform that is designed for professionals. In the next 6-12 months, I will update my social media profiles with an emphasis on LinkedIn. By doing this, I hope to grow my professional network.

Thank you for reading my blog. Please share your thoughts in the comment box below. I will reply as soon as possible.

COM0014 – Blog post #5: Personal Brand

What is my personal brand? Honestly, I never actually stopped everything I do daily to reflect on what my own brand is. I guess that what could be perceived as my brand depends on who you ask. I always believed that it is very hard to be truthful when one looks at himself/herself in the mirror. Therefore, I will try to define my brand through the eyes of outsiders.

Photo by Matej from Pexels

I had the wonderful surprise to talk with a childhood friend last year. He found me on Facebook and we started talking. At first I had no idea who he was, but then he started to tell me an event that involved the both of us and suddenly, the memories came back flooding. Through the story, he made me realize that I have always, from when I was in elementary school until now, been a very loyal friend. Another one of my childhood friends (high school in this case) told me that I was never causing trouble for my fellow students and I was always fun to be around.

When I was in university, my fellow students always found me to be someone on whom they could rely on, especially the girls. Since I was in a serious relationship at the time, they knew that they could be “safe” around me. A funny side story: when the movie Sex in the City came out, I had to go see it five times because five of my female friends could not convince their own boyfriends to go see it with them.

Photo by Anny Patterson from Pexels

Ever since I entered the workforce, I have had wonderful coworkers. My supervisors have always praised my hard working ethics. I have always been labelled as a very friendly, positive, polite, hard working, and highly dependable coworker. Those traits have allowed even upper management to notice me and offer me an amazing job!

My parents have always told me that I have such a great positive personality, and also how great of a son I am. I did used to fight with my siblings before but now they also see me as a very positive influence in their lives.

My wife never stops to remind me how lucky she is to have me in her life and how great of a father I am to our kids.

I do recognize a few characteristics that have remained unchanged ever since I was a child: being a very dependable and loyal friend. The rest of my positive attributes have been picked up thanks to my community and my choice of friends (university and work).

I am the product of very positive external influences. Hard work, loyalty, kindness, and dependable are characteristics that are taught and I am very thankful to have received those influences early in my life.

COM0014 Blog #4 – Ottawa Public Health

The Ottawa Public Health is, to me, a model to follow as a B2C business. They have been able to maintain a strong social media through their social media accounts and have even demonstrated how to gracefully recover from errors.

The Ottawa Public Health is a government agency in charge of informing people on health tips and guidance. I will show below how they have succeeded in increasing their brand awareness and their engagements towards their followers.

Twitter presence:

Being a government agency, the Ottawa Public Health is required to publish its social media content in both official languages. The agency has two Twitter accounts:

@OttawaHealth with 126.5K followers and @ottawasante with 5,523 followers, with both accounts having been created on October 2009. They publish on both channels multiple time during the day (at least three times per day) about topics relevant to the Ottawa public by using a simple friendly tone.

The content of their Tweeter posts are mostly text with media (images or videos).

Presence on Instagram

Similar to their Twitter account, the Ottawa public Health agency has a strong presence on Instagram with 39.2k followers. They are not shy to make fun of themselves

or tackle serious topics that affects our communities

The content of their Instagram posts are mostly media based (images or videos).

Presence on Facebook

Just like Twitter, they have two social media accounts on Facebook:

@ottawahealth with 59,132 followers and @ottawasante with 6,459 followers. The content published on Twitter is duplicated in Facebook.

The content of their Facebook posts are mostly text with media (images or videos). They could make better use of the increase character count that Facebook provides (versus the 280 characters limit for Twitter) but this doesn’t seem to affect their target audience.

The Ottawa Public Health is using its social media channels in the way that they were intended to be used. Their posts are well written and designed to create engagement and virality. Not all of their posts will go viral but they have found a formula that works for their target audience. Therefore, their approach is work really well.

COM0014 Blog #3 – Researching My Target Audience

Nothing is more annoying than having a product that seems to have, in your eyes, a very high potential to succeed in your industry but not knowing your target audience as well as you thought you did. Our traveling exhibits department was recently tasked with offering edukits (Education Kits) to homeschools and I was given the assignment of researching our target audience. Since I had already worked with the target audience of our education department, and also the target audience of our traveling exhibit, I assumed that the magic formula was going to be a simple copy and paste of the current status quo. Boy was I wrong!

Don’t ASS-U-ME Anything

Photo from

The target audience of our education department is mostly made up teachers from pre-schools to grade 12 because they are the ones bringing their classes to us. To make sure that we hit our mark, we tailor the content to their curriculum. We actually used the same tactic for travelling exhibits edukits program because they had always been used by schools that were either too far away from our site, or they did not have the funds to pay for a trip-and-an-educational-program at our site. It was easy to just apply the same approach that was used for onsite educational programs.

Homeschools are unlike conventional schools. Some groups follow the provincial curriculum while others follow their own program that can be a mix-and-match of various curriculum. There are not set rules that homeschoolers need to follow a certain path, as long as the child can pass an admission exam when it will be time for them to enter into a college or a university. The biggest difference between regular schooling structure is that homeschooled kids can receive their education either as a 1-on-1 style or as part of a cluster of other homeschool groups.

Photo by August de Richelieu from Pexels

After learning our mistakes, we were able to identify our specific target audience (gender, age groups, gender of the adult teaching, etc). We focused or marketing efforts in the image of a more private, 1-on-1 educational experience and we were able to reach our target audience and meet our goals.

What did you think of my blog? Please leave a comment down below.

COM0015 Blog Post #2 Strong and Weak Organizations

Social media has become an extension of organization to the point of allowing them to share their brand and shape a relationship with their followers way faster and easier than traditional means (advertisements, info-letters). But, as many have realized, each social media platforms have their own set of rules, making them the perfect environment for some companies while hurting others. I will present below two strong social media organizations and two weak social media organizations, and will explain what makes their strong or weak.

Rules are rules

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Each social media platform is different from the others. They might have similarities and allow the user to do be used the exact same way but doing so will only hurt your social media performances because your followers on one platform will not react the same way to a post meant for another platform. Twitter cannot be used like Facebook or Instagram or LinkedIn, and neither of those platforms are interchangeable when one is doing a social media campaign.

There’s only two types of people in the world

Photo by

Britney Spears released a song 13 years ago called Circus, in which the first sentences set the stage for the main message that she wanted to deliver. This same statement can be applied to social media in the sense that you either entertain your followers or you will observe others doing it for you. It is very important to put-on-a-show and not take the backseat. If you can be a ringleader on your platform (s), you will retain your current base of followers and even increase it.

Be human

Photo by – from the series Almost Human, episode 5

I don’t know about you but I don’t like bots. I really prefer a human touch when I require a service or ask a question. I do understand the advantage of having bots, especially when you are dealing with big waves of inquiries from followers requesting an almost immediate answer but at the end of the day, I will prefer to wait the extra time to get that virtual human touch. If your organization can have a human presence on their social media platform (s) for engagements, it is a sign that they are giving a great customer experience.

The results are in

In my opinion, you would want to always keep in mind the three above-mentioned guidelines whenever you would want to evaluate the social media strength of an organization. To make my results more comprehensive, I have decided to adopt a point system where each organization can have up to 10 points per category.

Ottawa Public Health 27 points

This organization really knows what they are doing. They are always adapting their strong social media presence with current world events and their content always has the human element to keep you engaged. The only part that I feel that they could improve on (hence the 7) is with their cross platform messages. It feels that Instagram and Facebook are being used in the same way while, in my opinion, they could use more of what Facebook has to offer to their advantages and make it distinguishable from Instagram.

Parks Canada 25 points

This organization also knows what they are doing. They have really strong social media presence and are always looking for ways to improve. They have a variety of platforms that they use to keep their followers engaged. Just like Ottawa Public Health, this organization excelled in the first two categories. Unfortunately, I do have to give them 5 points for the last category because they have not had enough diversity and inclusion as part of their social media presence.

Canadian museums 20 points

The biggest problem for those organization is the lack of resources. I do realize that I am being very broad and there might be museums that are performing better than others, but in general, they are the exceptions. Museums are designed to bring people into their buildings to see their exhibits. Due to their business model, not too much importance is given to social media where the engagement is virtual. Even though a lot of museums have had to switch their activities to an online presence, most of the managements only see this as a temporary endeavor instead of a long term activity. Due to this, I have awarded 5 points for each of the last two guidelines.

What did you think of my blog? I am looking forward to reading and replying to your comments.

COM0014 – Blog #2 : Imperfection is the new perfection

So much time and resources are spent to develop content for social media accounts. The more account there are, the bigger and more diverse a social media team will be. Even though we double-check and triple-check the grammar and the orthography of our texts, every now and then, an error will slip in. Oddly enough, those mistakes actually generated more engagement than usual. So, this got me wondering: should we continue to strive for perfection or should we simply pull the wool over our followers’ eyes and present them with content written of a subpar quality?

Photo by Leah Kelley from Pexels

My social media department quickly put this theory to the test. We decided to run this experiment over 4 weeks where on week 1, we would allow the regular low level of mistakes in our content, and each following week increase by 5% the amount of errors.

At the end of the month, we compiled the engagement rates and we find out some interesting results:

  • 1-5% mistakes generated an increased engagement with positive comments from our followers.
  • 5-10% mistakes generated an increased engagement but with a mix of positive and negative comments from our followers.
  • 10-15% mistakes generated an increased engagement with mostly negative comments from our followers.

We actually didn’t dare to continue pass 15%.

We came to realize that mistakes can be overlooked or forgiven if they fall under our followers’ perception of what can be passed as “an honest mistake”, where we determined the boundary to be under 5% of the text. Going pass that limit did increase the engagement but with a more negative trend, which would put at risk our viewership.

What are your thoughts on my topic? Please leave a comment below and I will respond.

COM0015: Blog #1 – Tools & Sources

My two favorite social media tools used for listening/monitoring are Sprout Social and Hootsuite. Coincidently, they are also my two best tool sources of news and updates of interest to me.

I use three social media platforms for work: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, which form the bulk of all of the 30+ accounts that I have to monitor on a daily basis. Being able to use Sprout Social and Hootsuite make my life much easier.

Photo by Tobias Dziuba from Pexels

I manage 8 Facebook accounts for my organization. It can become a hassle to post and follow the response of our followers. Luckily, Sprout Social allows me to receive all of that interaction into a more manageable stream of interactions. I can reply directly to public comments or private messages and schedule content.

Photo by Brett Jordan from Pexels

I also manage 8 Twitter accounts for my organization and, for reasons mentioned above, Sprout Social allows me to receive all of that interaction into a more manageable stream of interactions (public replies or private messages, and schedule content).

Photo by Omkar Patyane from Pexels

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, Sprout Social allows me to manage easily our 4 Instagram accounts.

Now you might be asking yourself “Well, where does Hootsuite come into play since Sprout Social takes care of all of my needs”, and you would be right except for one important revelation that I have held back until now: LinkedIn.

If I could merge Sprout Social and Hootsuite, I would have my ideal kind of listening/monitoring social media tool. I love the interface of Hootsuite. I am able to customize the streams to give me the perfect combination of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram sources of news relevant to my workplace.

To be honest, I have tried to use the features of Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at their source but Sprout Social and Hootsuite really make my job easier when it comes to managing multiple social media accounts and listening to various sources of news for updates.

Please share your opinions about my article in the comment box.