COM0014 – Blog #7: Personal Reflection

This course has taught me a lot and will help me with managing the social media account at my place of work. I have learned that interacting with customers and creating a Business to Consumer relationship online is ideal, and also maintaining a positive image of the company through social media will work in our benefit.

blackboard business chalkboard concept

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I think that storytelling is important to creating digital content because it gives people the comfort that they are not just interacting with a company or a social media account, but there are real people that care and want to help them or provide them with the best information possible. Being active online and creating an online presence is a great way to set up a strong online following of people, and therefore, a strong base of potential or current customers for a business.

I want to tell honest stories that will help people and guide them to make the right decisions, for example, to guide them to come into the dealership I work at rather than another dealership. Making content personalized and honest and true will speak wonders to people who were on the fence about purchasing a vehicle from our dealership.

This course was incredibly helpful, and I really enjoyed the discussion posts. Having discussions where there are conflicting ideas, yet all sides are heard and appreciated, is a great environment to be a part of. I have learned a lot and will carry these skills with me into the future.

 

 

COM0014 – Blog #6: My Story

“What is your greatest achievement?”

June 9th, 2017:

I looked at my peers around me, dressed head to toe in all black. The girls had their hair done and the guys had their faces shaved and groomed. We stood in a line, two by two, and we waited outside the heavy metal doors. We were fidgety and anxious, and understandably so. We all worked hard for four years and the payoff had finally arrived. No one wanted to think about the fears of the future or where we would all be after that day. That day was a good day; a day no one would ever forget.

Someone made a signal and another person opened the doors. Music was playing loudly, the familiar tune we had all heard before in high school. You didn’t hear that song often, but when you did, it always sent a grin soaring across everyone’s face.

We sat down in alphabetical order and waited patiently for the names to be called. I felt my heart racing. I had seen videos of people tripping and falling across the stage and in the back of my head, I had to keep myself composed. I buried the thought in the depths of my imaginative mind.

My row got up and we moved to the darker side of the stage where our instructors smiled with glee. Some of them even dressed us in our hoods and guided us up the steps. Then, my name was called. “Emily McCall. Graduating with a Specialization in Digital Media. Graduating with distinction.”

My cheeks were hurting as I shook the President of UOIT’s hand. I proudly took my degree and waved to my parents and my sister who were sitting on the other side of the stage.

And just like that, it was over. I had graduated from four long, hardworking years of university. I was now a Bachelor of Arts graduate and I had never felt more proud of myself in my entire life. DSC_0469

 

COM0014 – Blog #5: Personal Branding

COM0014 – Blog #5: Personal Branding

close up of hand over white background

Photo by Lum3n.com on Pexels.com

I will admit, I stared at my laptop for a while before starting this blog post. I am 23 years old and I think it is quite acceptable to not know what my personal brand is yet. I’m still discovering myself and what I like and don’t like. Somedays I really like my job and other days I second guess my entire academic career and wonder what my life would be like if I did something else. So, here’s my shot at figuring out what my personal brand is.

 

What are some personal qualities or characteristics that set you apart from the competition?

I like to think that I am a big dreamer. I always set goals and have dreams for myself and one day, I hope to accomplish all of these things. I have vision and I work hard, but I’m also not afraid to have fun. I like to be creative, I like music and play instruments, and I love to write. Writing and reading are a big part of my life. One of my dreams and goals to publish a fiction novel. I don’t know where I would be without writing and reading, and also music! I’m not sure if these qualities set me apart from the competition, but I think the creativity of it all helps me look at things in a different perspective than other people.

book book pages browse education

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

What have you done lately to make yourself stand out? 

I’m going to be honest… I couldn’t tell you. I’m a plain person and sometimes (most times) I like to keep to myself. The one thing I can think of is I came up with a fun contest idea to give away free tickets to an OHL game at work. The contest went well and we had a lot of people enter!

 

What would your colleagues say is your best trait? 

I think they would say that I’m always full of ideas, and I’m not timid when it comes to sharing them. When I think of something, especially if it is something that will help better the company or attract more people online, I speak up and say it. My boss has told me that he really appreciates when I share my ideas as it is a big asset to the company and I bring a different perspective to the table. Another trait is that I am good at getting things done in an appropriate timeline and am good at getting organized when I have a lot of tasks on my plate.

 

I hope this has given you all some insight of who I am. I still do not know what my personal brand is, but I am looking forward to growing mentally and physically. I’ll let you know when I figure it all out.

COMM0014 – Blog #4: Netflix to Consumer Interactions on Twitter

COMM0014 – Blog #4: Netflix to Consumer Interactions on Twitter

When you think of Netflix, the first thing that probably comes to mind is your favourite show to binge. For me, it’s selecting my favourite episodes of The Mindy Project or The Office and forgetting all of my stresses. Another exciting moment that occurs to me when I think about Netflix is all of the great original series that they produce, and the best way they promote these shows is through their Twitter account.

 

Netflix to Consumer Twitter Interactions

Netflix utilizes it’s Twitter account for successful business to consumer interactions. Considering that there are many people globally that own a Netflix account and watch daily, there are multiple Twitter accounts per geographic location. For instance, there is a Netflix Canada account, Netflix US, Netflix UK and Ireland, and so on. This is a smart social media tactic to cover all regions with Netflix without getting any questions from consumers mixed up or lost in a sea of notifications. Also, there are different shows and movies in different regions.

When Netflix adds a new movie or TV show, they promote it on their Twitter account in a casual and humorous way that allows for audience and consumer interaction. For example, Netflix recently released an original series called Maniac, starring Emma Stone and Jonah Hill. They used a screenshot from the movie Superbad, that the pair did in the past, and made a joke out of it to promote that the new movie will be arriving soon. Adding elements of humour within their Twitter page allows for more followers and hopefully more potential customers to purchase a Netflix account.

Netflix Screenshot

Screenshot from Netflix Canada Twitter page

 

Another great example is how Netflix interacts with their audiences online. In the two screenshots below, you will see how Netflix engages in consumer interactions. The Tweets already have a lot of Retweets, Likes, and Comments, which can persuade people who do not have Netflix already to purchase an account as Netflix Tweets about their great selection. In a way, this is subtle advertising from Netflix through Twitter.

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Netflix using one of the popular shows that streams on their service to interact with followers/consumers; Screenshot from Netflix US Twitter page

 

Screenshot from Netflix US Twitter page

 

Not only does Netflix use their Twitter platform for humour or promoting new shows, but they also use it as a way to communicate with their current customers and answer questions through their Netflix Customer Service account.

Screenshot from Netflix Canada Twitter page

I  the above image, a current customer asked Netflix Canada if they will be getting the final season of New Girl, and Netflix Customer Service jumped in to quickly answer their question. Netflix usually responds on Twitter immediately, which is great for keeping current customers happy and also keeping their business.

Consensus: Netflix is a Smart Twitter User

Netflix is smart with the way they use Twitter. First off, since they have numerous accounts for the different regions, and also customer support, they are able to combat any questions quickly and efficiently. Netflix uses Twitter as a helpful promotional tool to get the word out about new shows and movies that will be arriving; they utilize it as a way to promote the popular items that are already available to stream; and lastly, Netflix uses Twitter as a way to communicate with current customers, and also potential customers, through humour, relatable posts, and Twitter threads and conversations.

 

 

COM0014 – Blog #3: Targeting the Audience with Cadillac

Let’s jump right into business. Targeting people to purchase a vehicle can be tough at times, but it’s successful when you pick and choose the right ones. I’m going to give you a brief inside scoop of how we target certain people for particular campaigns.

At my job where I work as a Marketing Coordinator for a car dealership, we outsource our ad creations and targeting to another company. At the end of each month, we receive a report on how well the ads did, who we targeted the ads to, and if any leads were created from those ads. For the purpose of this blog post, I’m going to make up an example of how we would target a Cadillac customer. 

cadillac classic car

Here’s what Cadillacs used to look like… but this style is no more! (Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com)

Demographics

Cadillac isn’t your Grandpa’s boat-sized sedan anymore. Cadillacs have now been rebranded, and are considered luxury vehicles where Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, sunroofs, and all-wheel drive, plus more, come in a lot of the base vehicles. When advertising to people, we use language that will turn heads and capture attention.

When looking for Cadillac customers that we want to steer into our dealership, we use our outsourced ad agency to target them through Facebook or Instagram. The demographics could be as follows: middle-aged men or women; unmarried people as some of the vehicles are coupes that would not comfortably accommodate a family of four or more; people with a post-secondary education.

XT5 Crossover Sunroof

Interior of a Cadillac XT5 (Image from Cadillac.com)

Psychographics

In addition to income and age, we want to know what the customers are looking for. We usually target people based on what they have expressed an interest in, or if they have clicked one of our Cadillac ads before and possibly submitted a lead.

The psychographics we could look for are people in white collar jobs with a disposable income, and also people in middle to upper class as most new base Cadillac sedans or coupes start at the $50,000 range. We would also want to know what car they are currently driving as this can give us an indication of what they might be interested in. For instance, if they are driving a new Honda Civic but expressed an interest in Cadillac, then maybe a Cadillac ATS or CTS would suit their style. As a company, we might also present our lease offers to show that shopping for a luxury vehicle can also be an affordable and realistic purchase.

CTS-V Sedan Taking a Turn

2018 Cadillac CTS-V (Image from Cadillac.com)

Cadillacs Are Cool Now

Cadillacs are now cool luxury vehicles with tech savvy equipment and stylish interiors and exteriors. Cadillac has retargeted their audience to suit their new brand. Here’s an interesting article on how Cadillac has now upped its game in the luxury vehicle world in comparison to recent years: https://bloom.bg/2xMHz95

COM0014 – Blog #2: Digital Storytelling and Short Attention Spans

We’ve become impatient as a society, and the best way to adapt to short attention spans is to make articles and stories more concise. Short and sweet – I’ve learned that those are the types of online articles that everyone prefers to read nowadays. The most important information is right at the top of the page or even in the headline, and the rest of the information becomes irrelevant. What time did the event take place? Where did it happen? Will it affect my commute to work or my plans later in the evening? Those are the questions that everyone wants answers to when reading a news article for instance, otherwise the main message will get lost in a sea of paragraphs and words.

four people holding mobile phones

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

With the rise of digital technology and communication, everyone has a device in their hands, making it easier to access information they need instantaneously. With that said, everyone now has a short attention span. Can’t get the information pulled up within 0.6 seconds? Not worth it. Can’t connect to LTE service but can only connect to 3G? Definitely not worth it. If no one can access the information, the chances of them reading it or even sharing it to others is extremely low.

A news source that does a good job with this is BuzzFeed News. Their headlines almost tell the entire story to its readers. For example, this news article has the important information in the headline. The readers know exactly what they’re about to read, and probably don’t even have to read on any longer. BuzzFeed News also encourages audience engagement by leaving a comments section down below and buttons to share on social media.

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BuzzFeed News Article; Photo from BuzzFeed News

 

Do you think that digital storytelling has adapted to society’s short attention spans? Let’s discuss!

COM0014 – Blog #1: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

COM0014 – Blog #1: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

It has been 13 years and I still haven’t received my acceptance letter to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. I was disappointed for a while but I decided to take matters into my own hands by going on a trip to Universal Orlando to see it myself!

In May of 2017, I went to visit Universal Studios. I’m a child at heart. I’m in love with movie magic, and I have never been so immersed in magic before while at Universal Studios. The smell of butter beer and sweets wafted through the streets of Diagon Alley as I passed the Leaky Cauldron; kids ran out of Ollivander’s with wands in their hands and chased each other into the Owlery; but my favourite of all, the dragon at the top of Gringott’s Bank blew out warm flames every few minutes.

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Diagon Alley

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Ollivander’s Wand Shop at Diagon Alley

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Leaky Cauldron at Diagon Alley

After riding the Escape From Gringotts ride and exploring all of the shops in Diagon Alley, I hopped on the Hogwarts Express at Platform 9¾ and took a trip to Hogwarts and Hogsmeade.

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Hogwarts Express Train (Fun fact: it’s actually a ride AND a mode of transportation that takes you from one park to the other)

First stop: Hogwarts. Walking through the castle made me realize how long this must have taken to build. The attention to detail was mesmerizing. The castle had holograms of the characters walking around while speaking to each other, and the pictures on the wall moved. After riding the Hogwarts attraction, I explored Hogsmeade. The whole place – Diagon Alley, Hogsmeade, Hogwarts – was identical to the Harry Potter films that I know and love. Every building, every window, every crack in the sidewalk was almost an exact replica. The rides were interactive and in 4D, aside from the insanely fun inverted roller coaster, The Dueling Dragons.

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Hogwarts

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Hogsmeade

My favourite ride was Escape From Gringotts. The detail and the ride itself were incredible! While everyone waited in line, you got to walk through the bank where the Goblins actually moved as if they were just working at their everyday jobs! The ride was a roller coaster with a 4D twist and it was so fun! I unfortunately didn’t have my camera with me at the time to take photographs or videos, but here is a video from YouTube if you are curious: https://bit.ly/2N7roOb

If you love roller coasters, warm weather, and most importantly Harry Potter, then I highly recommend making the trip down to Universal, Orlando. I couldn’t even express in words at the time how amazing the experience was. They created an entire London street with a Knight Bus, a replica of King’s Cross Station, and a secret passageway that gets you into Diagon Alley, very similar to what is in the films.

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“London”

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The Knight Bus

 

Have you been to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Florida? What was your favourite experience there? If not, would you want to go? Leave a comment down below!

 

For anyone interested in travelling and for those that want to see more, here are some helpful links to get you started:

Universal Orlando Resort – The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Hogsmeade Walkthrough

Diagon Alley Walkthrough

The Power of Social Media and Creating Viral Celebrities

I’m sure most of us have heard the term “viral videos” before. YouTube was the main resource for all viral videos back in it’s early years in 2005 (i.e. Charlie Bit My Finger, SaladFingers, Keyboard Cat). I find that nowadays, most viral videos are now posted on Instagram or Twitter first, before they even make it to YouTube, and the people starring in the videos become viral video celebrities and memes.

The Power of Sharing a Video

Through the power of retweeting, liking, commenting, and sharing, average everyday people can become famous. I think that Vine was responsible for creating these overnight viral celebrities. For those who do not know, Vine was an app where anyone could post a 6 second video for anyone with the app to see. The videos could also be shared through Twitter and Facebook. Many average people became famous from their Vines, such as King Bach, Cameron Dallas, and Shawn Mendes, to name a few. The site was shut down a few years ago, but is rumoured to be revived in the near future.

Now that Vine no longer exists, social media users are posting their content on Instagram and Twitter. It is easy for one to quickly take out their phone and film something right in front of them, and post it immediately online. Average Joe’s are becoming well-known around the world for their strange quirks and embarrassing moments. Here is a list of a few viral video stars that you might recognize.

The “Walmart Yodeling Kid”

Yes, I am bringing this up. To be completely honest, he was my inspiration for writing this blog post.

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YouTube.com

Last week, Mason Ramsey decided to do a spur-of-the-moment performance of Hank Williams’ “Lovesick Blues” at a Walmart in Illinois (you can watch the video on YouTube here: www.youtube.com). His fame did not rise from YouTube, though. After someone shared the video on Twitter with the caption “Me: Where can I find the lightbulbs?; Walmart Employee: (the video),” Mason became a meme and an instant social media viral sensation.

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Twitter.com

Mason has a lovely voice, which lead to people commenting on the Twitter post saying that they have listened to the video more than ten times. Twitter users were adding GIFs of people dancing to the online thread saying that they could listen to it all day. With all of the sharing and retweeting, Mason is no longer an average everyday kid, and he is now a viral celebrity. The video was even made into an EDM remix (that is super catchy, might I add). Check it out below:

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YouTube.com

The comments also show that he is trending worldwide.

The power of sharing a video on social media truly amazes me. With a simple click of a button, an average person can become a famous viral celebrity. To leave you all with a few thoughts, here is something to think about and discuss in the comments below: If you think back to a few years ago, an attractive teenager named Alex worked at Target (“Alex From Target”). A young girl took his photo without his knowledge and shared it Twitter, where it blew up and became viral. Although Alex became famous, and even was a guest on Ellen, Alex’s managers at Target were unimpressed and he almost lost his job. So, keeping this in mind, and the repercussions of being a viral star, do you think that Mason, the young Walmart yodeler, would have wanted to be filmed and shared on Twitter? Was his viral fame a blessing or a curse?

 Social media allows for average, everyday people to get their 15 seconds of fame: https://bit.ly/2Jv0MRC 

 One single retweet is powerful, and could create a viral video star: https://bit.ly/2Jv0MRC 

The Social Media Will and Testament

It is inevitable — one day we won’t be here anymore. It’s an uncomfortable thought that makes me cringe, but it will happen. The reason why I bring this up is because of an interesting debate I heard a while back on the talk radio station NewsTalk 1010, as well as in a social media class I took in university. The question for debate is:  what happens to your social media account after you die, and who should have access to it?

 

Should anyone have access to your account?

Facebook has already taken this thought into consideration. According to an article posted on The Telegraph, a Facebook account can be “memorialized,” or a user can choose a legacy contact when they first create their Facebook account. This legacy contact will then have the access to delete the Facebook account or create any changes to the profile (Telegraph Financial Services, 2017). However, there is a privacy issue that needs to be considered. According to Facebook, it is a violation of one’s privacy to have another person log in to their account (who is not the legacy) to deactivate it, and is considered “breaking the law” (Telegraph Financial Services, 2017). Personal information is housed in social media profiles, and if this information falls into the wrong hands, it could be detrimental. Who would want to get charged for that? Would it even be worth it? I honestly do not think this is all worth the effort and trouble.

To play devil’s advocate, I can imagine the frustration that goes on. What if someone you loved dearly passed away and you wanted to access their social media? What if there was something that could have been stopped and they shared it with someone online, and since it could be considered “a crime,” you would not be able to access their account?

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Photo provided by Pexels

Is it all worth the hassle?

Other social media sites require a death certificate or a form to be filled out. Why all the hassle for just a social media account? In an article on CBC.ca written by RJ Skinner (2017), whoever has access to your social media account after your death, or if anyone has access to it, is totally up to you. Consider it your Social Media Will and Testament; you can pick and choose if you want someone to be your legacy, or you can choose for your account to be locked, forever.

 

What do you think of all this? Would you want someone to be your social media legacy, or do you not care if someone takes over your social media account?

 

Referenced articles:

Skinner, R.J. (2017). What happens to your social media accounts when you die is up to you. CBC. Retrieved from http://www.cbc.ca/life/wellness/what-happens-to-your-social-media-accounts-when-you-die-is-up-to-you-1.4060609

Telegraph Financial Services. (2017). What happens to your social media accounts after you die? The Telegraph. Retrieved from https://www.telegraph.co.uk/financial-services/retirement-solutions/funeral-plans/social-media-after-death/

 

Curious about what happens to your social media accounts after you pass on? Me, too. Click here to find out: https://bit.ly/2H14KRa 

 

What will happen to your social media profile if you die? Click here to read and find out more: https://bit.ly/2H14KRa 

Pinterest Positivity

With all the different social media platforms out in the universe, it is hard to maintain a positive outlook on our own lives. I for one, can easily say, that scrolling through Instagram and Facebook, I get jealous. Plain and simple. It is so easy to become envious of other people’s lives. Sometimes, it’s people I have never met before!

“Facebook Depression”

I read an article in the past about a term called “Facebook Depression,” coined by a man named C.R. Blease. Essentially, Facebook Depression is the “affective result of spending too much time on the social networking site” (Blease, 2015, p.1). The article found that while on Facebook, one’s well-being does not decrease, however, Facebook is a platform for impression management. All of our “friends” on Facebook only post the best images of themselves, the best moments in their lives, which in turn, can potentially lead to self doubt and lack of confidence. You can check out the article here.

Instead of comparing my life to someone else’s I found another way to find a more positive outlook on social media. I have found myself using Pinterest and I have never felt more optimistic.

What is Pinterest? 

I’m sure most people know what Pinterest is, but for those who do not, I’ll explain in my own words: Pinterest is an online vision board, where you can “pin” images of items (i.e. clothing, travel destinations, furniture and decor) to your online profile. The more you pin certain items, the more of these items will show up on your feed. You can even curate what content you want to see.

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Photo courtesy of Pinterest.com

Why and how does Pinterest provide positivity?

I feel that this type of social media is a lot more “positive” in a sense than others. I can use Pinterest for inspiration and fuel my creative fire, find tips on writing, a brand new outfit and hairstyle, and ideas to re-vamp my bedroom, all in one place. I feel so inspired and eager to try new meals and baked goods. I feel motivated when I scroll through Pinterest and start pinning new workout moves and protein snacks. Pinterest is an all-in-one social media site to find motivation and also be connected to friends. You can follow celebrities and your friends and see what they are up to on Pinterest, and you can follow certain “boards” to see specific content.

Although I am an avid user of other social media sites, such as Instagram and Facebook, I find myself scrolling through those sites and getting bored, or worse, upset. Sometimes it’s hard to forget that Facebook and Instagram are full of edited and filtered moments. If you take a step away from these sites, and expose yourself to something more positive, such as Pinterest, the green-eyed monster goes away, and I find that a more productive and inspired self comes to light.

Do you have a Pinterest account? What kinds of boards do you have on your profile? I’d love to see what you are all interested in. Leave a comment below!

 

 

Referenced Article:

Blease, C.R. (2015). Too many friends, too few likes? Evolutionary psychology
and Facebook depression. Review of General Psychology, 19(1), 1-13. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/features/gpr-gpr0000030.pdf

 

 

facebook Need a little positivity  in your life? Try some Pinterest Positivity!: https://bit.ly/2G4JMQd

 

Twitter Tired of seeing vacation photos and proposals on your feed? Try some positivity with Pinterest: https://bit.ly/2G4JMQd