Com 0014 – Blog #2 Did you get all the information? If not, then keep reading!

People don’t read is not something new to me because I’m one of those people who scans articles for the juicy parts, something that catches my eye to keep me going. I’m like that with books that I read, if the author doesn’t get me to the point fast enough then I skim ahead to get there. I’ve already skimmed this to make sure it’s something I want to read!

The content for this week’s lesson was invaluable because it’s something that we should all know when we are wanting to express our thoughts and ideas. I struggle with expressing myself clearly at times in conversations because by the time I have something to say the conversation has moved on and the points I were about to express are irrelevant. With writing you are able to express your thoughts and opinions on subjects and then open it up for others to comment, giving you the time to be clear and concise on the subject.

When you go to the museum and look at the hieroglyphs, you can see the stories they tell but they also don’t give the complete picture. We have to fill in the rest of the story by imaging what the people were feeling and thinking. When you are writing for social media, you have many options on how you want to communicate. Adding an image or video gives your readers a great insight into how you are feeling on your subject matter. You can draw people in because it gives them a different view of you and presents yourself as more personable. It’s also a great approach for those of us who struggle with the written word.

Communication is constantly changing and shifting and you have to be actively listening to participate and stay involved. Communication online is no different and if you want people to stay involved then you need methods for them to respond. Having sharing buttons or asking questions is a great start to getting and keeping conversations going but if you don’t have a hook or well laid out content then people will get bored and move on.

Did you make it through this blog?
Do you have any other ideas on how to make your content more interesting or shareable?

Continue reading

COM0014 – Blog #1: Christmas Vacation is a time to relax isn’t it?

Every year I try to schedule a little extra time to coincide with my son’s vacation time during Christmas and I always tell my myself that I’m going to relax, read some books and just enjoy the time. The reality is though that even though I take the extra time off I never seem to do much relaxing.

There’s always the rushing around for Christmas with organizing dinners with family and last minute shopping and then we start all over preparing for New Year’s events. But I can always count on my December 31’st tradition where we bundle up for a day of tobogganing at Manning Park.

I look forward to this activity every year, one, because sometimes this is the only time that I get to play in the snow as the Fraser Valley in BC is not known for the amount of snow it receives, and two, because my extended family and friends all have a great time behaving like little kids.

I have to admit that winter is actually my favourite time of the year and snow is the reason. Then when you add on all the fun that sledding entails you have a recipe for fun times.

Another tradition that we have incorporated into our sledding is our need to make the longest train of sleds and try to make it down the hill in one piece. We have managed to accomplish this feat a few times but mostly we end up with a fraction of us breaking away from the train and tumbling over each other on our way down the hill. Add in the dogs that follow us nipping at our toques and it is a sight to behold.

New Years Sledding 2019

So though I don’t always get to sit and read or relax, I do get to have some fun and spend lots of time with family and really isn’t that what is the most important things?

Personal Reflection

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I have always had great difficulties with personal reflection. Ask me to write and reflect about someone else and I can go on for days on end! But to reflect and write about myself has always been a struggle. I guess it comes from many many years of putting others happiness in front of mine.

BUT NOT ANYMORE!!!!!!

So here we go!

Storytelling is important to great digital content because you want your readers and followers to enjoy reading your content and information. You want them to relate to your content. You want them to react to your content. At our business we want people to trust that our word is good and that they feel confident in doing business with us.

Our content will be guided by story, because it helps the audience relate to you personally or to the business. You want your content to allow your audience to engage with you. By posting about equipment maintenance and filter changing, this shows our customers that we want their equipment to run properly for them and that we want their existing equipment to work for them for as long as possible, before having to replace it. We do not want them to think that because their equipment may break that we are the type of business that just replaces it with new equipment.

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The kind of stories that our business wants to tell are those that supply important preventative maintenance information, warranty information, rebates and upcoming promotions, fundraising information, and staff profiles and accreditations. Really anything pertinent to the business that our customers or potential customers should know about.

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So if you are in need of any HVAC work, please do not hesitate to call us!!

COM0014-Blog #7: Personal Reflection on Digital Communication

Communication has come a long way since Alexander Graham Bell.  Nowadays, digital communication is used not only to communicate, but for a multitude of applications.  Learning about social media listening was an eye-opener as it is the base of any successful marketing campaign made for social media platforms.

The storytelling aspect of digital communications was also, in a sense, a revelation.  To be good at writing and describing products and services is essential, but to be a good storyteller is crucial.  It is true that the engagement level is dictated, not necessarily by the story itself, but by the way the story is being told.

The element of diversity among different audiences involving the adaptation of a specific communication style was surprising to me.  I was under the impression that only social platforms used to display the conveyed messages were what mattered the most to the targeted audience.  Learning about the different audiences based on age, culture and gender has helped me to understand the terms segmentation and generational marketing.

The discussion about personal and corporate branding was very interesting as it did bring a different take on the subject.  Exchanging opinions and ideas about these two kinds of branding were engaging as well as beneficial.

In conclusion, I have discovered that no matter what you sell, make or build, if you keep in mind the principles that have been learned during the Digital Communication course, you will be able to write a story that will assure that your marketing campaign will be a very successful one! 

On that note, I must go, I have some stories to tell!

COM0014:Blog 6: My Super Fan!

Photo Via Personal Library

As I think about my own life, and the children I will have, I look forward to having a kid that is just like me. Same humour, same energy, and a kid that is my right-hand-man. This is the exact relationship between my dad and I. Ever since I was young, my dad and I did everything together, and still do! Trips to Home Depot for his next project, trips to Michael’s for MY next project, and trips to Starbucks for our own enjoyment. There is no one in the world I would trust more than my dad.

My dad grew up in a family owned chemical distribution and manufacturing business. Since 1978, the business grew to now a highly successful investment company! As he grew up during the big transition, he learned to have tough skin, become an amazing leader not just at work but in everyday life, and that to be a good leader you have to guide and listen, not control! These are all the skills he has instilled in me.

Although he is constantly working, my dad does an excellent job in splitting his work life and home life. Always making sure he attended Christmas concerts, sport competitions, and even brought me a soda when I forgot it on ‘National Soda Day’ in Grade 2! Through all of this he has remained my biggest fan.

Photo Via Personal Library of Dad and I posing in India as my mom said “LOOK NICE!”

When I was asking the question “Who is your super fan?” my answer immediately popped in to my head.

As a dad, I rarely hear criticism, but rather gives me new ideas, and creates other strategies to help me. My dad would never take over a project from me, or tell me exactly what to do. He will always guide me to success. Letting me know what worked for him, or tell me the tools I will need. Then he sits back and watches me achieve it. Instead of making me feel inferior, this actually makes me feel more successful, and is a better learning lesson.

My dad loves to see me achieve anything I set my mind to. There is no control over my life. If I love it and want it bad enough, he encourages me to pursue it, and be the best I can. I always know he is rooting for me, whether a small situation, or big opportunity. He will always push me to be in a leadership position, because he knows I can handle it. Seeing my strengths and guiding me to where I shine.

All of these features about my dad is a clear sign that he wants me to achieve as high as I can, and have independent success. Without leaning on him for everything, so I can say I did it, rather than he did it and I held the flashlight.

I know I can count on him to explain any topic, answer any question, and give me any guidance in every aspect of my life.

Photo of my dad in 2014 at my Cheerleading competition wearing a ‘Cheer Dad’ shirt with my face on it… He still wears in to this day.

Whether he be wearing his Cheer Dad shirt, buying every ‘Algonquin College Dad’ merchandise, or listening to my crazy boy drama, I know my dad loves me with his whole heart, and is proud of all my success. Looking forward to where I go in life, and reminding me of my strengths. I will always pick up the phone when I see the ‘Dad’ caller ID, because in my eyes, we are each others super fan.

COM0014:Personal Brand: Personally Me!

Photo via Personal Library

When I was thinking of my own personal brand, and how I define it, I decided to reach out to my closest friends, asking them what words they use to describe me. The answers flooded in with different words. Enthusiastic, determined, out-going, creative… Everyone had mixed replies, except one word that was mentioned by everyone…

I am HIGHLY extroverted.

Being an extrovert has helped me throughout my life. Socially, work wise, and creating friendships. It has also brought me to one of my biggest passions of work… Sales & Marketing. Having an enthusiastic and positive outlook on life makes connecting with people more comfortable and easy. Having determination when selling a product, while thinking of creative ways to show off the features helps customers make their final decision to purchase, and ultimately gives them more reason to buy.

While talking may be considered a specialty of mine, knowing when to zip the lips and learn is key to anyone wanting to expand their chatty expertise.

While socializing is something I enjoy, I also love to learn. Learning is not only class room, but creating job shadowing opportunities in fields that I have a high interest for. Both can go hand in hand. While going to school to expand my knowledge, I make sure to crate a work/student lifestyle to fuel both needs!

Life is not all about jobs. Remembering to make time for things I love, like travelling. It has always been a huge part of my life; creating memories with people all over the world, being shown new cultures, learning different types of living, and being exposed to some incredible lives. Learning this from travelling is something people remember, and carry on in to their everyday life back home. Remembering how they work, their traditions, and ideas on different topics.

As school, work, and travel are all massive parts of who I have become, going back to my roots in Saskatchewan has taught me great, valuable lessons. Especially growing up in a family business, and being shown what hard work is. Being taught that ‘everything is in my job description’, and witnessing all sorts of different career options, that I can look forward to in my future!

Photo via Personal Library

From learning all there is in different career options, to keeping up with a memorable a social life, throwing parties with my friends, and using creativity as an outlet, creating masterpieces via Pinterest, it is never a dull moment in my life.

With work, and travel being a priority to me, my personal brand is how I am perceived by others. From what I do, how I show off myself, and who I am. Creating a life I enjoy, remaining the real me, and showing the world that I am in fact an extrovert that just likes to have fun! And yes, I would love to talk about it!

What is my story?

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Do people know my story?

Not a lot of people do, unless they are family or a close friend. The challenges I have had to overcome to get to this point in my life were a lot. Not as much as some, but to me a lot.

At the age of twenty-two I decided to quite college and get married and start a family. As crazy as it sounds, I didn’t think I could possibly do it all at the same time. I thought I was doing the right thing at the time.

Fast forward eight years and I have two young children and a husband who was fulfilling his dreams of continued education, belonging to multiple sporting teams, travelling with friends, and advancing his career. But here I am playing the role of strong independent mother to two great children, but also at the same time I was slowly dying inside because I felt left out and left behind.

Then the day came, out of the blue, out of no where…my husband was leaving us…cause he wasn’t happy! Wasn’t Happy? All I could think about was how he could even imagine that he wasn’t happy, when my days started with kids, the middle was working a job I wasn’t happy in, and ended with kids and kids homework. I barely had the time to shower, cause I was holding down the household and working full time…..but he wasn’t happy?

From that day forward I would not let my children see me fail or doubt myself. They had always seen me work hard, but now it was not just for them but for myself as well. I was functioning as a single parent household for almost five years, before I went on a date. My kids and my happiness had to come first and I simply was not ready to sunject us to possibly more hurt.

Fast forward a few years. I have found love again 🙂 My children are extremely happy and focused on their schooling. I have left my job that I did not enjoy, working evening and weekends to make ends meet. I now run the office at a well established business just minutes from our house. I have found the time to complete the Social Media certificate program at Algonquin College. And I am truly happy!

But none of this would have even been remotely possible without the love and support of my family and friends, and especially the love of my children and our new blended family!

COM0014-Blog #6: Do People Know Your Story?

Image retrieved from https://unsplash.com/s/photos/climbing

There was a time when I worked for an egocentric boss in a well-known company that had an international reach.  My manager came to see me one day and asked me to do something that I thought was not productive at all and would not solve any of our problems.  And I opened my mouth to tell him so.  He then answered back to me saying that his position was allowing him to tell me to do something and there was nothing I could say or do about it.  I just had to do it.  I quit a couple of months down the road and decided to start my own translation company.

Since I am a fast learner, I took on the challenge to create everything myself, find the future clients myself and complete the translation requests by myself.  In short, I wanted to do and to be everything all at once!  I have quickly learned that it is impossible to do it all, especially when you are a person who likes to get things done impeccably and in a very reasonable time frame.  Well, this means that I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist and that delegating is, for me, a hard thing to do.

Having not obtained the level of business that I expected, and of course, needless to say, I had great expectations, I got discouraged and decided to find a position that would allow me to give the same quality of work that I was giving while managing my company.  I then realized that not too many companies really cared about nor understood the importance of the translation part of their business as much as I did. 

That it is why I decided to be a freelancer again and be proud of the work that I do.  I know that I will take the time and the effort to ensure the translation of a document reflects the content, the essence and the tone of the original document.  Furthermore, if it is dedicated to an audience located in Quebec, I will ensure the translation will be understood and properly perceived by the targeted audience.  I have always believed that actions speak louder than words. 

This is my story. What is yours?

COM0014-Blog #5: Personal Brand

I define personal brand as being your image, your reputation and your career.  It is composed of bits and pieces of your life; personal and corporate.  It is, in my opinion, the most vulnerable representation of yourself.  Why?  There is no place to hide.   

My personal branding statement is: Learn.  Grow.  Thrive.  My passion and enthusiasm are some key elements that allow me to stand out.  Well, I must confess that my sense of humor and my rhetoric have helped build my brand too!  I was very social before the arrival of social media, so I was not intimidated by it at all.

I am a perpetual learner.  My career path consists of many different specializations that are different but related to each other; translator, copywriter, blogger, marketing coordinator, customer and supplier relations, administration and management related positions.  The combination of all these studies, experiences and skills is what differentiates me from my competitors, and it allows me to be versatile and flexible.

I am the organizer, the problem solver, the thinker, the devil’s advocate on whom you can count on.  I am the one people come to for technology-related issues (and to know all my shortcuts!).  Because I am great at generating ideas and finding solutions to problems, fields including creativity, research and innovation are attractive to me.  New projects are a source of challenges and excitement.  I value teamwork and brainstorming sessions where people having a common goal can share ideas! 

LinkedIn is the social media platform that I mostly use and since it is linked to the corporate world, it allows me to connect with professionals and opens doors that otherwise would be inaccessible.  I make sure I comment and post often to ensure constant visibility.  I have been posting some of my blogs and have been listening to the received feedback.  I am learning to engage people and create a targeted audience which is not an easy task.  I am still very cautious as to what I choose to post online.  My motto is “Think twice, post once.” 

References

Gunnulfsen, Zu Anjalika Kamis.  (April 24th, 2018).  What is the difference between personal image and personal branding?  Retrieved from https://marketinginasia.com/2018/04/24/what-is-the-difference-between-personal-image-and-personal-branding/