Creating Social Media Controversy – Good or Bad?

Social Media is full of controversy – personal, political and business. What about posting a controversial advertisement? It could go one of two ways. For example, everyone remembers the Pepsi ad with Kendall Jenner. Hollywood Reporter columnist Miriam Bale wrote “The pulled commercial is the latest example of the white corporate world brazenly borrowing from black culture, and Jenner was precisely the wrong person to star in it.” Clearly this was not the mark that Pepsi was going for. But what happens when a brand puts out a controversial ad and it does exactly what they intended it to do?

Photo of Colin Kaepernick

Photo – Colin Kaepernick via Twitter

Insert Nike’s Colin Kaepernick Ad. Even the question of did Nike intend for the reaction they got or did they create an additional ad to address the feedback they received in controversial. In my opinion they knew exactly what was going to happen and I think it’s genius. Here is a very short run down of what happened.

Nike posted the Colin Kaepernick Commercial on September 5th, 2018. Either you loved or hated the ad. A lot of people started filming themselves burning their Nike products and stating that they were going to boycott the brand. Now if an advertisement hits you so hard that you are burning the product you purchased for likely over $100 I would say it worked, wouldn’t you?

Some said it was a disaster and they didn’t know if Nike could recover from it. Then Nike did the most brilliant thing and posted burning instructions:

Nike Burn instructions - from Colin Kaepernick ad

Photo – Nike Burn Instructions via Twitter

I believe the message that Nike was trying to send was – If you do not stand behind what we are saying, we do not want you wearing our product. It’s a bold move for sure but with everything that is going on in the world today, I think it’s an important one. As they say, all it takes is one person to have the courage to speak up for a change to start. Was this a direct message to President Trump? He had a lot to say about it, tweeting on September 5th “Just like the NFL, whose rating have gone WAY DOWN. Nike is getting absolutely killed with anger and boycotts. I wonder if they had any idea that it would be this way?”

The Guardian reported that Nike’s sales surged 31% just days after the ad was release. Nike’s CEO Mark Parker claimed “The ad led to record engagement for the brand.” Right there you have it – Record engagement. They hit their target audience (19 – 29), sales surged and had more engagement with their brand than ever before. This entire campaign is a great example how creating controversy on social media – if done right – can completely change how a brand is viewed and start a whole new conversation!

So, what other brands can you think of that this has worked for or failed for? If you were in this position would you take such a risk? How would you way out the risk factors? Let me know!

Twitter: Social Controversay – Good or bad? –

Facebook – Nike – Just do It Safely –


COM0014 – Blog #3 – Want to rave?

So you like to rave do you? Well to be honest it’s not my thing at all. I can appreciate the culture and family like vibe that comes with it but it’s not my ideal Saturday night. However, when it comes to marketing it doesn’t have to be your thing or even something you know about. I was in this exact position a few years ago and had to figure out how to get in touch with those who do enjoy a rave. So, how did I do it? Take a look below

Photo from

Young Adults at a Rave


First I had to take a look at who m demographic was. This one can be very tricky when it comes to a rave as the culture started back in the 1980’s. So depending on the style of music – house, trap, dub step etc it helped narrow down immediately if we were looking at the younger generation of ravers or the older generation. For the purpose of this conversation let’s discuss the younger generation.

The company Facebook page had a lot of followers so we would also link an event page to the company page. From here we could see the type of people who liked the event, said they were going to the event and purchased tickets. The next time we had a similar group come in we would send out a message to these individuals, this of course helped grow the interest of the event. We determined that our target was 19 – 25, a fairly even mixture of male to female, single, and a mixture of races.


The way we were able to determine the Psychograpics simply by Facebook – going through people’s profiles, seeing what they likes, blogs they followed etc. It was an easy form of research. Once we had built up lists of people who fit the graphics we were looking for we were able to target them for specific events. Some were determined by location, price point or style of music.

Determining whom you are trying to market to all begins with you or your company. What is your product? How well do you know your product? Once you have that you can move forward with determining all other elements and how to find those individuals and speak to them!

Is the End of a Social Society near?

Gone are the days when the streets would be filled with children and teens after school planning an adventure together. Today we see a sea of zombies looking down at their phones are they walk home slowly, in a daze.

kids walking while looking at their phone

Phone from

This trend is not only limited to our kids. Think about the last time you were driving down the street after work and everyone you saw was looking down at their phones?

When social media first appeared it was just that – a way for others to be social together. However fast forward to today and Social Media has turned into an escape from everyday life. One research study   implies that the mere presence of a cell phone or smart phone can lessen the quality of an in-person conversation, lowing the amount of empathy that is exchanged between friends. This looks like a serious problem to me, how about you? In a 2014 Statistics Canada reported that the number of SIM card connections registered to a mobile network reached 28.41 Million.

So the real question is how do we realize that we are spending all of our time on social media and check back in to reality – here a few simple steps:

Put a No Social Media time frame in your schedule.

This can be as simple as blocking off eight hours on your Saturday to enjoy quality connections with your family and friends.

No Social Media or Cell Phones are the table

While this may seem easy you’d be surprised how quickly the phone can end up at the table for such reasons as music, to share an article or to have something to do while they other person leaves to go to the bathroom. Take this time to really engage with the other people about their day, plans or to share your own.

Put the phone down and grab a book

How often to hear people say – I’ve heard that’s a good book, I should read it sometime – but never do. When you have the urge to pick up the phone and scroll through endless photo shopped pictures of the Kardashians – pick up a book instead. This can teach you something new or help your imagination start-up again. It also can act as a great conversation starting at the diner table!

At the end of it all it’s our responsibility to remember that meaningful relationships are important and can create lifelong bonds. It helps us at work, personal lives and just running day-to-day errands. What are some tricks you use to limited use? Did any of the above suggestions work for you? Let me know!

There is a wealth of information out there – some links below for viewing pleasure:

The iPhone Effect

The end of the Social Era can’t come soon enough

Social Media making millennials less social: STUDY

Canadians spend more time online at the expense of face-to-face time



COM0014 – Blog Post #2: Storytelling and Communication Styles

Okay are you ready to learn how to express the best story of your life?! Learn how to really capture your friends and family?

Story telling has been around since the dawn of time. Every bit of history shows that each civilization had some sort of story telling. Whether it be through drawing on cave walls to personal journals and books found by historians. Even today story telling is ever evolving from movies, podcasts, social media to documentaries. Everyone loves being taken for a journey into someone’s experiences, history or fictional ideas.

The key to telling and expressing the best story is how you communicate the information to your audience. For example in many movies we see the story being told from multiple angles. First person, a narrator or a bunch of difference characters. The understand the voice you want your story to take is to understand how you want the audience to feel. Welcomed and relaxed? Perhaps formal and direct. Remember the the situation and the character can help you make this discussion. Once you have decided you can begin the writing, recording or acting out your story.

One thing to keep in mind is that in today’s world everyone and everything is always telling a story and it is easy for your audience to become distracted by something else. How often in the middle of the movie do you see someone on their phone skimming through social media? So how to you keep the interested in what your story? Grab them right from the get go with a hook! Make sure you start off with the most important and exciting information and let it trickle from there. Ask yourself “Is this information important to the story or am I rambling?”

If you follow these steps you are on your way to being an engaged and interesting story telling. So, tell me a story?!