Blog Post 4: Out of the Box

When I first started the Social Media course, I was only on the most obvious platforms. Facebook, Instagram ,Twitter (hardly) and LinkedIn. I learned that Twitter can actually be quite beneficial for getting people back to your main website, in my case, my blog. I have started to post to Twitter much more frequently, which in return has given me some more followers, and more traffic to Love Learning A Mom’s Journey.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Two of my favorite unexpected applications I will take away from this course is Hootsuite and Brand24. Now, they may be very popular to others, but to me they were brand new. I loved using Brand24 for an assignment in a previous course and Hootsuite is definitely my favourite content application. It’s great for scheduling and staying on track of things. Sprout Social was also one that I enjoyed learning about and hope to get the chance to use in a future career.

What I love most about social media is that it is such an evolving field. I was on ICQ, AOL, MSN… and now I am doing live video sessions with the potential of having hundreds of people watching. How cool is that?

There will always be new applications coming out, there will always be new platforms to learn about. It’s so exciting, and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store!

This is been so much fun, and I am so glad to have taken the Social Media course. If you are reading this somehow and are debating taking the course…do it! There are tons of jobs out there in the field, and it is only going to keep growing.

Photo by Gary Barnes on Pexels.com

Assignment 5: SEO for Social Media

“SEO for Social Media” is a course I took on Linkedin Learning. I chose this event because throughout the entire Social Media course, SEO is the one thing I have had a difficult time wrapping my head around. I know search engine optimization is very important in social media and therefore I wanted to take the opportunity to expand my learning on it.

Gabe Villamizar was the instructor, and unfortunately because this was not a live event, I wasn’t able to interact live with him. However, I did add him to my linked in account, and will not hesitate to contact him, if ever I need to know more about SEO. I found him to be a great speaker and very intelligent. He knows his stuff.

            He mentioned some things I already knew how to do thanks to the social media course (such as hyper linking in a blog post) however, he went on to explain how important adding these links are for SEO. He also mentions that articles that are 2000+ words get more top 10 places in searches. That was definitely something I learned that I will keep in mind. I also learned that when doing B2C the best platforms to post on are Facebook, Instagram (which is almost a 50-50 balance of men and women users) and YouTube.

Gabe explained how important profile optimization is when working in social media. Something he said is the quote I will take away:

“Begin seeing your accounts and profiles as your digital worldwide billboard on the busiest freeway where hundreds, thousands and millions of cars drive by 24/7, 365.”

He went on to explain how important is to make sure your accounts are completely filled out “Account Completion”  He also explained that consistency across all platforms in the name of the game, which I remember learning throughout the social media courses. All of these things help with SEO, which in return gets you the results you want, traffic to your website.

I will definitely being attending more courses and events when they are offered on LinkedIn Learning. I believe they are credible and I take a lot away from them. It is great that there always seem to be new videos/sessions coming out and so I can always improve my skills.

Blog Post #2: Strong and Weak Organizations

An organization I feel is doing Social Media right is The Happy Sleep Company. If you’ve read my earlier posts in other courses, you’ll know I am a huge fan of this company. Their feed is just done so right. They have consistent colors, logos, tone, etc. She shares videos that are 100% appropriate to their target audience and they keep things real. They are selling a product, however, they also share so many tips on their various platforms that really do help out first, second and even third and fourth time parents. They just recently posted a reel about two different moms making completely different choices for their families, and the company emphasis that it is 100% okay to do things differently. They make it a key point to say “Do what works for your family.” They are very consistent with posts, and share many stories. They go love often, and have recently started a podcast.

An organization I feel could use a better Social Media Strategy is Lots of Dots. I know they are new to social media, but they definitely could use a better social media plan. They are in the industry of arts and their main object is to sell paintings. They have an Instagram account, Facebook account, and a website. They are inconsistent with postings and don’t post nearly enough on either platform.  From my understanding they are going through some changes, so hopefully we will see things like more consistency, a solid color scheme, more posts directed at a targeted audience, and more engagement out of them soon! I feel they would sell a lot more paintings and reach a much larger audience if they were to adopt a better social media strategy. Even just by being more consistent and using more platforms like Twitter, they would start to see the results they are after.

Photo by Cristian Dina on Pexels.com
COM0015 – Blog #4 – Out of the Box

COM0015 – Blog #4 – Out of the Box

Over the course of the past year, I have been learning so much about social media marketing, and in particular the strategies that go along with it. I have always been fairly confident in using applications such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc. The unexpected applications I have found and fallen in love with are TikTok and Cyberimpact. These two applications are now in my daily use. 

TikTok

The first unexpected application I am going to talk about, is actually the most recent one I have started using! For the longest time I had heard of TikTok, but never bothered to look into it, or even sign up for it, I just assumed it was a “video app that teenagers used”. I never really considered the marketing side of it. Recently my husband and oldest brother signed up for it and both of them were very absorbed by it – at almost 40 years old I couldn’t imagine what they found so intriguing about this video app. 

Finally, a few weeks ago I gave in and downloaded the app. WOW, did I find myself down a rabbit hole of videos – I don’t even know how many hours I lost on that app. I was so fascinated, I loved it! But what shocked me the most, was how business promoted on it. I always thought it was “just a place for influencers”. Businesses were able to make a short 60 second video, and in some cases, it wasn’t until the end of the video that I realized I was actually watching an advertisement, especially the companies that really picked up on current TikTok trends. 

I absolutely love the app, I spend more hours on it then I wish to admit, and I am a believer that it is a great place for companies to be. It is interactive, entertaining, and definitely the way of the future. 

Cyberimpact

The next application I want to talk about is Cyberimpact. This is an email marketing tool. But what I really liked about this application is that it is Canadian (Cyberimpact, n.d.)! While being Canadian had its obvious perks – such as supporting local and simple billing, what I really liked about it is that it is made to work smoothly with Canadian Ant-Spam Laws (Cyberimpact, n.d.). A Canadian company, designed for Canadian needs, how great is that! 

In terms of overall use and support, it worked similar to many other systems I have tried. You upload your contacts, design your templates, write emails, and blast out your newsletter. I cannot say the concept of Cyberimpact was innovative, but making a system that works with Canadian needs and laws – that was the real game changer. 

I think it is easy to see why I love these two applications so much! What unexpected applications have you found and fallen in love with? Tell me about them in the comments below!

Sources:

Cyberimpact (no date). Contact us. Retrieved from https://www.cyberimpact.com/en/contact-us/

Cyberimpact (no date). Logo. Retrieved from https://images.app.goo.gl/AJZMKsRGwfo9tfSM6

Cyberimpact (no date). Why Choose Cyberimpact. Retrieved from https://www.cyberimpact.com/en/

TikTok, (no date). Logo. Retrieved from https://images.app.goo.gl/7hWxMJxLczDu8Ujy6

The Human Psyche and the Effects of Social Media:Are We Really in Control of our Thoughts

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Everything we do affects our conscience and subconscious mind.  From the events we experience to the emotions we feel all have an unknown impact on our thought process and the way we view life.  The human psyche is the entire human mind, conscious and unconscious.  

Our conscious mind contains all of the thoughts, memories, and feelings that we are aware of at any time. This is the part of our mental process that we can think and talk about in a rational manner. Whereas our unconscious mind holds our feelings, thoughts, urges and memories that are outside of our conscious awareness.  Our unconscious mind holds anything that is not pleasing or unacceptable. Such as, pain, anxiety and conflict.  

Even though it is our conscious mind that views social media, the way we feel about the things that we see on social media are interpreted and stored in our unconscious mind.  When someone like a post or a picture we’ve posted it causes an “activation in BRAIN CIRCUITY IMPLICATED IN REWARD”. In other words, it makes us feel good.  A result not getting the likes we hope for causes the opposite reaction, we no longer feel good about ourselves.  These are the feelings we carry with us every day. Even after we see the things, we see on social media the implications last long after.  We as users need to give more attention to what social media is doing to us.  The feelings of resentment we may have towards our past decisions could be triggered by watching others post about how successful they might be.  

Our distorted body image towards ourselves could be caused by seeing all the models who have altered their bodies.  These affects could negatively impact the way we see our lives and the way we look forward to our future.  

A study conducted in 2018 by Pew Research Centre concluded 88% of respondents between 18 to 19 years old reported using social media.  78% of 30 to 49-year- old said the same things.  Keeping in mind that this was a study conducted in 2018 you can only imagine how much these numbers have potentially increased.  Especially in these times of a global pandemic where one of the only means of socializing is through social media.  The only course of action to defend ourselves from these negative implications is to decrease our use of social media and realize that you cannot take everything posted at face value.  We need to take control of our lives and feelings, we should not allow social platforms to determine how we feel every day! Will you take control?

Related Reading:  

Psychology of Social Media

Reference:

“The Psychology of Social Media.” King University Online, online.king.edu/news/psychology-of-social-media/. 

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

When I was in my last year of college, one of my classes was to put on a networking event, invite professionals, and then network. I was so excited to put this event on (it’s probably why I got into event planning as a career). Then the night finally arrived, I was dressed up and ready to go, once we arrived, the nerves hit me – walking around a room, not really knowing anyone, making conversations with strangers in a professional way – my stomach was in knots. I think most of my classmates felt the same, for almost all of us it was the first time we had really networked. Needless to say, I survived, and it ended up being a pretty great night, and I learned such a great skill. 

Now with the advancements of social media, networking can be done from the comfort of your home, while still making valuable connections. It is a great way to meet people in your industry from around the world.  

Networking Online

Photo by Yan Krukov on Pexels.com

My parent strategy for developing my professional network online is to become more active and involved in groups relative to my industry. As an event planner, I have joined several LinkedIn and Facebook groups dedicated to the event industry. For many months I have lingered, read posts, and followed along on some discussion. I will now start becoming more active on a consistent basis. I will be involved in the discussions, contribute my own ideas, and listen and reply the other professionals around me. I have also started revamping my LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter pages to give them a professional facelift, and update all my relative information. Last summer I began the event planning blog, From Setup to Cleanup, part of my plan is to revamp the blog site and begin blogging on a bi-weekly basis. This will provide good content for my social media platforms and also help show my skills to those in the same industry. 

In-person Networking

Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

Once Covid-19 allows us to gather in groups and attend events again, my parent strategy for developing my professional in-person networks is to start attending more events in the Event Planning field. I have always had a fear of in-person networking, but over the past few years I have become a lot more confident in myself and my skills, so I believe I am ready to start showcasing them in the in-person world. I have even started teaching Lunch & Learn workshops – these are all gifts I can showcase and offer to my wider networks. 

Plan to Develop my Networks

While it is easy to say I am going to start networking online and in person, it will never happen without a solid plan. So here is my 6-month timeline:

March 2021

  1. Continue listening in the networking groups on social media to find some interesting topics of discussion.
  2. Gather research as necessary.
  3. Update my social media pages with a professional facelift.

April 2021

  1. Make 1 post on 3 different social media networking pages
  2. Reply to at least 5 other discussions.
  3. Revamp my blog and make my first (new) post. 
  4. Share my first (new) blog post on all my social media platforms.

May 2021

  1. Research some webinars I can attend online to network and/or increase my knowledge
  2. Attend at least one virtual event. 
  3. Make at least 2 posts on 3 different social media networking pages. 
  4. Reply and discuss to at least 5 other discussions on different networking pages. 
  5. Continue to research and listen to other for new ideas.

June 2021

  1. Attend at least 2 webinars/virtual networking events this month.
  2. Begin to share my blog to a wider community.
  3. Actively engage in several discussions in my networks. 

July 2021

  1. Begin to research in-person networking events I can attend in the next 6-12 months as Covid-19 allows.
  2. If possible, make plans/purchase tickets to at least one networking event.
  3. Continue to post to my blog.
  4. Continue to engage on social media networks.  

August 2021

  1. Share my blog within my new networks.
  2. Offer a Lunch & Learn workshop to my new networks in Fall 2021 – begin promoting now. 
  3. Research new ways to interact or launch new social sites.

What are your networking strategies? Tell me about them in the comments below!

Sources:

Danson, H. (2020, July). [Blog] From Setup to Cleanup. Retrieved from https://dans00080.wixsite.com/fromsetuptocleanup

Fauxels. (2019, November 5). Photo Of People Doing Handshakes. Retrieved from https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-people-doing-handshakes-3183197/

Krukov, Y. (2020, May 22). Woman in White Shirt Sitting on Chair in Front of Macbook. Retrieved from https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-white-shirt-sitting-on-chair-in-front-of-macbook-4458421/

Blog 4 – Are Cell Phones, the Internet, and Social Media taking over TV?

The internet and social media have flourished over the last 40 years and exponentially in the past 20 years.

Look at how far we’ve come!

During Expo 1967, I recall visiting a kiosk where they had a landline telephone. When you made a call from the landline, you could see your face reflected on a monitor screen in front of you. I recall thinking to myself we would, in the not-so-distant future, walk around with a portable phone and be able to see the person we were talking to from their phone. Fast forward several decades later, that insight has become a reality.

From Audio to Video

After Alexander Graham Bell discovered the telephone in 1876, research and development into a portable videophone became his focus. Although he had the intuitive idea and insight on how it should function, he never achieved that dream. Others eventually forged ahead with this idea. This notion progressed into the invention of television.  Subsequently, a video conference from a landline phone

Evolution of television 1920-2020

with a video camera combination came about. According to Wikipedia, it would seem that the first portable videophone created by a Japanese company in 1983 came on the market sometime around 1986. This portable videophone could be attached to a television monitor for clearer video reception. For more detailed facts about the advancement of television and telephone (landlines, vehicular, and portable units), check out this great article. Approximately 25 years later, around 2010 facetime, (portable video conferencing) became available.

Black & white television – Pexels by Andre Moura

Fast forward to 2021, we can now watch television programs, movies, documentaries, have two-way or group video chats, send and receive email communication, text messaging all on our smartphones, tablets, and personal computers, instantaneously.

Zoom group call – Pexels by Anna Shvets

How much more can we expect?

We live in an electronic world. Television manufacturers are continuously improving visual and sound quality to make their units more attractive and enticing to consumers. You can purchase ambient televisions that morph into your background wall color, while others are as thin as a credit card or roll out of a cabinet, and some even double-sided. A large screen television gives you the feeling like you could step into it and partake in the program. Television stations and manufacturers have inter-married their products with electronic devices, having all sorts of streaming capabilities. With all of this available technology, people are multi-tasking. We are obsessed with television, all the while scrolling through our portable phones or tablets. We have become enslaved to television, never letting go of the remote, and constantly surfing stations – it is an addiction. We are tech addicts. Television is not going anywhere in the near future.

TV and hand holding remote – Pexels by JESHOOTS.com

What’s your thought on this? Do you think that TV will become a dinosaur and alternately replaced by social media, cell phones, and the internet?

REFERENCES:

Will the internet replace TV? | Trigger Happy Remote

Why the Internet Is About to Replace TV as the Most Important Source of News – The Atlantic

History of Mobile Cell Phones | The First Phone To Present Time (bebusinessed.com)

History of videotelephony – Wikipedia

________________________________________________________________________________________

Can you foresee TV surviving? https://bit.ly/3sai5Nf

Will TV survive? https://bit.ly/3sai5Nf

COM0015 – Blog #2 – Strong and Weak Organizations

We live in a world where a social media presence is so important. It is hard to believe there are still companies out there who are not utilizing social media to benefit their business. Some companies who are really doing social media well are Ottawa Public Health and Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. A company who would especially benefit from a proper social media plan is Michael’s Craft Store.  

Successful Social Media Strategies

The first organization that I would like to highlight as having a successful social media strategy is Ottawa Public Health. I was drawn to this organization as they have been a beacon of hope and information since the beginning of the Covid-19 Pandemic. I believe they have a successful social media strategy because they post very relevant and helpful information, while remaining relevant and humorous.  They have successfully managed to relate public health guidelines to many different situations including the Superbowl, mental health initiatives, and reducing misinformation. 

While I have enjoyed watching Ottawa Public Health Posts over the course of the pandemic, a recent personal favourite was their Superbowl Tweet seen here: 

This post shows humour and relates to so many football fans but is also humorous enough for the non-football fan, all while reminding us to stay home and stay safe (the real message). It was clearly well received by their audience with many retweets and replies. Posts like this keep the information out there and continue to conversation between Ottawa Public Health and their audience, as well as outwards to even more audiences. 

The second organization that I would like to highlight as having a successful social media strategy is Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. While this is a much smaller organization and currently only on Facebook, it is clear to see they have an impressive social media strategy. Centre 105 is a day program in Cornwall that supplies meals several days a week to those most vulnerable. I was drawn to this organization as I have a soft spot in my heart for those working to make a better world for those less fortunate. It has become obvious that Centre 105 uses their social media to thank their supporters as well as show the supporters what is being done with their donations. 

This post from Centre 105 is one example of them showing how donated money is used to produce meals for those in need. 

As a supporter of the centre, I find this very enlightening. I also tend to share this information quite a bit. By posting this, I think it makes it easier to find new supporters and also allow current supporters to start a conversation with others. Another thing Centre 105 does on social media that I believe makes them successful is thanking people or organizations for donations, like this one:

I think this works well for them as it shows their gratitude, but also allows them to reach a bigger audience by thanking and tagging the organization.

Room for Improvement!

The organization I think needs to adopt or at least improve its social media strategy is Michael’s Craft Store. Michael’s only appears to have a verified Facebook page, and nothing on Twitter or Instagram. While their Facebook page is active, shows great videos, and holiday ideas, I do think they could be posting different types of content as well as using other social media platforms to reach different audiences. 

I think Michael’s is missing out on a huge demographic by not using Instagram and Tik Tok to make crafting and DIY videos. With much younger audiences on both of these platforms, I think they are missing a huge opportunity to connect. Since both those platforms are made for videos – why not show some new craft ideas to a younger audience. I have also noticed that a lot of people hashtag or mention Michaels on Twitter and Instagram, by not being on these platforms they are missing so many interactions and audience growth. 

While Michael’s is on YouTube, I think one area they should focus on is the DIY Bride. Many brides are looking to cut costs and do their own decorating – Michael’s could easily have an entire play list dedicated to bridal ideas such as bouquets, floral arrangements, centre pieces, and more. 

Michael’s is certainly on social media with a large fan base, but I do see a lot of room for improvement for them. I think if Michael’s wanted to create social media objectives, they would be to increase online sales through social media and grow a dedicated audience on new platforms. I think they could achieve this by launching onto the other platforms, and begin making specifically DIY Bridal videos, as well as asking for their viewers to post their home crafts and share those. Everyone likes to be featured by a large company! 

Social media is an important part of doing business. I think businesses should always be monitoring their own social media, as well as that of their competitors to see where they too can improve. Is your company successful in social media? Tell me about your successes in the comments below!

Sources:

Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. No Date. [Facebook Page]. Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Centre105

Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. 2021, February 5. [Facebook Post]. Happy Friday. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Centre105/posts/2781868662079651

Centre 105 Trinity Drop-In Day Program. 2021, January 13. [Facebook Post]. Thank you Angela. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Centre105/posts/2766244236975427

Michaels Stores. No Date. [Facebook Page]. Michaels Stores. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Michaels

Michaels Stores. No Date. [YouTube Page]. Michaels Stores. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/user/MichaelsStores

Michaels Stores. 2020, April 12. [Facebook Profile Picture]. Michaels Stores Profile Picture. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/Michaels/photos/a.447175974164/10158473718659165/

Ottawa Public Health. No Date. [Facebook Page]. Ottawa Public Health. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/ottawahealth

Ottawa Public Health. No Date. [Twitter Page] Ottawa Public Health. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/OttawaHealth

Ottawa Public Health. 2021, Feb 7. [Twitter Page] Superbowl Post. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/OttawaHealth/status/1358615144176230400

2020: Was It the Year of All Things Social Media?

Photo by Tatiana Syrikova on Pexels.com

We have officially made it to 2021, a year of recovering and hope, a year that seemed to have taken it’s sweet time getting here. 2020 was a devastating year to many, it was a time where the world was locked in their homes, away from friends and family, leaving them to turn to social media to connect. This was the biggest year for social media according to Hootsuite, 3.8 billion people, or 49 percent of the planet’s population, were active on social media. I would be lying if I said looking at my screen time these days didn’t alarm me, I devoted most of my 2020 year to watching TikTok video’s and planning out my Instagram feed, as I am sure many of you can relate.

For a year that was mostly distanced, I did find it one of my most social, I found myself on Facetime, Imessage, and Messenger more then ever before. I had nothing but time to reach out and check up on what some of my friends and family were doing, it confused me as I had never been closer to people, despite the physical distance. The amount of new apps that were downloaded on my phone in 2020 was at an all time high, I had downloaded TikTok the week of the first lockdown, I truly believe it was one of the only things keeping me entertained, as my attention was only needed for a 15-60 second video, until I would swipe to the next, which I did for countless hours and days. I don’t believe that the app would of had as much success as it did if it wasn’t for the pandemic, people chose to laugh and bond over an app that helped escape the reality that was 2020.

Photo by Polina Kovaleva on Pexels.com

With much of the world in a stay at home order, many people lost their jobs or had to work from home, you could say that people involved in social media work were quite lucky as it was almost like business as usual, but in their pyjamas. Influencers also had the ability to continue working almost as normal, with people turning to their phones more then ever, the attention was on them to grow and promote. Online shopping was heavily abused throughout the year, I can promise I made up a good chunk of that percentage. With people constantly scrolling through their social apps and seeing all the brands and influencers posting about the latest trends, and with nothing on the calendar to look forward to, why not order a little something to keep a lookout for in the mail. In many ways, social media had a hand in keeping 2020 afloat.

So if 2020 was the year of all things social media, what is in store for 2021? Will we top the numbers from the year before? How will this affect us once we return to our normal routines? Will we be doing TikTok dances at our desks? These are the questions I am left asking myself. I am hopeful and excited to see what is to come for 2021 on all things social media and our normal lives. What app did you spend your time on in 2020? What do you think is to come from all of this in 2021? Share your thoughts below!

Sources :

https://www.hootsuite.com/

https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20201216-how-tiktok-changed-the-world-in-2020

My Personal Networking Plan for 2021

My Personal Networking Plan for 2021

Photo from Unsplash

In the new year, I want to launch my own social media business. So networking will and must be a big part of my marketing strategy in the next few months.

In anticipation of that I have already joined local entrepreneur Facebook groups where I am going to put my focus on in the next few months.

Especially now that we are facing Covid-19, my networking will be mostly online in the next few months. I am going to try my best to network in person as well, but since I’m immune-compromised I have to extra careful.

I plan to be more present in the (local) Facebook groups that I mentioned, to introduce myself and my business and to comment, ask questions and to answer questions. I want to give more to those groups than I want to take. And I plan on building relationships with some of the people in those groups and I hope to get some meaningful connections and to also further my business through that.

What options can you recommend for online networking? Let me know in the comments.