COM0015 – Blog #2 – Strong and Weak Organizations

With over 9M followers, Benefit Cosmetics US has a strong social media presence. Their uniform posts follow a distinct pink and peach colour palette and pattern. Posts alternate between products and regrams of makeup looks from influencers. The aesthetic of their Instagram page is undeniable and is visually appealing. You can tell that they are confident in their brand and continue to be consistent. I enjoy the slogan “Laughter is the best Cosmetic”. The light heartedness of the slogan really shows in their posts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recently, Benefit Cosmetics held their third annual Benefit Brow Search: Arch Academy. After receiving over 15,000 entries, the top 20 were selected to go to Oheka Castle in New York to compete for the title of Best in Brows, a social media contract with Benefit Cosmetics and 50,000$. Social media beauty influencers were recruited to be team captains. These influencers have over 14.3M followers combined. Even while promoting the campaign, Benefit ontinued to use their established model.

I was drawn to Benefit Cosmetics because I use their products. They have been on my radar more these days because I follow Nakita Dragun who was heavily promoting her Arch Academy team.

Continuing with beauty and cosmetic trend, I have been seeing a lot of paid social media ads from Shopper Drug Mart. Although Shopper Drug Mart is not a worldwide brand like Benefit Cosmetic, they are still Canada’s largest drugstore chain where many turn for their beauty needs.

Here are some Canadian social media stats:

– 64% of Canadians have an account on a major social media network
– 12million Canadian Instagram users.
– 23million Canadian Facebook users
I’m sad to report that Shoppers only has 149K followers on IG and 992K on Facebook.

In 2013, Shoppers increased the square footage of their counters and increasing luxury brands. With that said, I don’t believe their social media accounts reflect the steps they have taken to differentiate themselves from stores like Sephora. Shoppers uses their Facebook to promote beauty and wellness as compared to their Instagram which focuses strictly on cosmetic items. The images they post are beautiful but there is no specific formula or design. They may have a strategy in place but I can’t see it. The first thing I believe they should do is establish a logic and plan for each post.

 

The account’s bio encourages followers to use the hashtag #ShoppersBeauty, which is surprising, because they DO NOT use hashtags in any of the body of their posts. I believe not using hashtags is a missed opportunity. I was impressed by the number of quality images that were posted under their suggested hashtag. The organization should be utilizing this free content by interacting more with the hashtag and regramming these images which are created by customers and beauty counter makeup artists.

As I write this blog, Shopper Drug Mart posted a video of their #ShoppersBeautyPros campaign which states that they search across Canada to find the brightest beauty stars and narrowed it down to 19 finalists. I would be interested in finding out where they were promoting this contest because I’ve done a deep dive and this is the first time I hear of it! There seems to be a disconnect.

 

Sources

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/shoppers-drug-mart-buffs-up-its-beauty-business/article10539686/

https://www.sherpamarketing.ca/canadian-social-media-stats-updated-2018-471

https://napoleoncat.com/stats/instagram-users-in-canada/2018/10

The Girl Afraid of Social Media

SOCIAL MEDIA is a powerful tool and it’s becoming increasingly urgent for businesses and individuals alike, to pay close attention and become aware of their audience and their voices; to maintain focus and control of their social image; and develop plans to manage their various profiles on carefully selected platforms.  Facebook and LinkedIn are the only social media platforms I currently use and its seems as though a Blog and Twitter account are the natural next steps for me – both personally and professionally.  2018 is the year I strive to become a more open and honest human-being; to re-discover my passions as a writer, researcher & humanitarian. By engrossing myself in the world of online community communication & participation, I hope to overcome my fears by once again falling in love with life and the pursuit of a new skills and dreams. What great timing to be able to share this journey with you!

Monarch Butterfly hanging on dangling vines

Monarch @ Museum of Nature

KIDS OF THE FUTURE

Younger generations (those having grown up with internet and social media) are obviously more comfortable with this, and are adapting to newer applications and technologies quicker than ever. However, as savvy as they may appear to be, they often naively have little concern for potential safety hazards, or the impact from something they’ve posted may have on others – we all know online bullying is an unfortunately common issue as Statistics Canada reveals in their report that ‘nearly one in five Internet users aged 15 to 29 reported having been cyber-bullied or cyber-stalked’.  Posts can have a personal impact as well and affect someone’s social image and even earning potential. While it’s important to be considerate and respectful, we may not even understand the full impact it’ll have in 10-20 years. Heck, maybe not having your goofy, embarrassing, teen-aged pictures all over the internet will be detrimental to having a ‘successful career’ in the future. That being said, internet safety and security is still a topic of concern for everyone to be aware of and protect themselves against – but it doesn’t have to be a scary place.

ELDER HESITATIONS

Older generations are, in my opinion, either ‘all-in’ and using the texting & video call features on their cell phones, they have various social media accounts, do lots of online shopping, and the like – or they are ‘all-out’.  ‘All-out’ types of people (like many of my own beloved family members) may have internet at home and know how to use Google and Kijiji – but they have no cell phone, no social media pages and certainly no Netflix or Amazon accounts. They are often overly concerned with sharing information – and rightly so – but for the most part I find those who are not using various social media platforms simply don’t feel as though it will add anything to their lives.  As they say – to each their own!

THE IN-BETWEENERS

Although I fall somewhere in the middle – having been introduced to the internet while in its blow-up phase during my early high school years – it’s only recently that I’ve decided to venture out further into the social media abyss, in attempts to live a more creative and fulfilling life, sharing stories and experiences to connect with others.  Getting over imagined fears of rejection, of ‘accidentally copying’ another’s work/ideas, and a slight touch of perfectionism have all influenced my extreme hesitation to blog over the years. Through years of work experiences, taking various courses, and watching YouTube videos/vlogs such as the super helpful TED Talks, I find myself ready to put some of these skills to use.  Some of the more recent lessons I’ve learned such as in ‘Your elusive creative genius’ Elizabeth Gilbert discusses the pressure of writing again after what she describes as needing to accept that she had probably already achieved her biggest accomplishment with her book Eat, Pay Love. Getting over the need to achieve something with my writing is something I’ve been dealing with and am striving to focus and use it as a form of self-expression. Building on my skills for professional use of course, and if down the road I can earn a living writing from a more personal viewpoint, then that will be awesome; but I will continue to write – even if just for myself. Changing careers has recently allowed me some valuable time to re-focus my values and evaluate my skill set. Like Elizabeth Gilbert says in her blog (along with her follow-up book), ‘Fear is boring… so, much like the butterflies are spreading their wings at the Museum of Nature; so shall I.

OVERCOMING FEARS

In attempts to combat the constant self-criticism further, in his talk Embrace the remix’ Kirby Ferguson says that ‘Nothing is original’ – which, to be honest I didn’t watch the entire video; but it was exactly what I needed to hear at the time.  To deal with criticism from others, try some of these great tips from Neil Patel in ‘How to Deal With Negative Social Media Comments.’ Watching videos, reading posts & books is obviously a great way to learn – but there’s nothing like just throwing yourself off a cliff – I mean – into something new and exciting, right!?

So, thank you for reading my first blog post!  I invite you to join me in exploration of this crazy creative life…  Follow my journey while learning the ins and outs of social media, setting boundaries, and studying its impact in our everyday lives –  including the societal influence its had so far, and will have in the future. Looking forward to being a more active participant in various online communities –  and hopefully getting to know you a bit too, wherever you may be!

Tell me, what are some of the fears you overcame while joining a new social media platform or online community?  What helped you overcome your hesitations?

 Finally joined Twitter! Add me @tdlgallant
Also posted my first Blog called ‘The Girl Afraid of Social Media’ http://bit.ly/2DUNqy2 Let me know what you think!

New to Twitter & Blogging – welcome to the 21st century! Read about my journey in ‘The Girl Afraid of Social Media’ Now, what to do with with my ’90’s VHS collection…

Behaviour Economics: What the heck is it and what does it mean for Social Media?

First, I have to declare that I am not a behavioural economist, nor do I pretend to be one. However, I have had some exposure to it over the last year and have learned how to apply the behavioural economics (BE for short) theories to marketing. I think they translate well into social media strategies so below you will find two BE theories and how I think we can leverage them alongside social media tactics.

Behavioural Economics: Not as Scary as it Sounds

When I first learned about BE, it was presented to me by a company who did not employ anyone who didn’t have a Ph.D. Right away I thought that there is no way I am smart enough to understand this! However, as I learned more about it I realized how much of this I was already applying and how much else I could learn from it.

Behavioral Economics is an interdisciplinary science blending psychology, economics, and neuroscience to understand human behavior and decision-making (source: BE Works). That is quite the definition, so what does it mean to us? To marketers, it provides insight into consumer behaviour – what persuades our customers to act and respond a certain way. If you can understand how people tend to act, you can attempt to predict how they will respond to your marketing efforts.

If you want a broader explanation, check out this video by Influence at Work (2012), where Dr. Robert Cialdini describes The Power of Persuasion. It is 11 mins long, but worth the watch!

So how does science relate to social media?

There are two BE theories that kept popping into my head this week as I was learning about social media tactics:

1. Social Reciprocity: Gifting, thanking and apologizing are effective ways (above mere compensation) to increase or maintain customer satisfaction. (Source: Behavioural Science Solutions Ltd.)

This means that as consumers, we place more value on gifts, acknowledgements and apologies than businesses often take into account. If customers can be more satisfied with an apology than mere monetary compensation, this is an easy win for a brand.

It seems to me that more and more people are turning to social media to complain. Given how quickly social media allows companies to react, it provides a perfect platform to respond quickly to customer comments and complaints in a quick and personal manner. I’m not saying that ‘I’m sorry’ is the answer to everything (compensation can be the right thing to do sometimes). However, if companies can save even a fraction of the money paid out to upset customers or save the time of phone reps by decreasing the number of inbound complaint calls by using social media posts, then that’s a pretty solid business case.

I’ll give you a personal example. A couple of years ago I was on a train where the advertised wi-fi was not working. I tweeted at the company that I was disappointed and they promptly replied apologizing and asking for details about which car I was on so that they could have someone fix the wi-fi. I was very impressed and instantly less angry about the situation.

2. Social Proof: Shows that many people endorsing a desired behaviour increases our likelihood of adopting that behaviour. (Source: Behavioural Science Solutions Ltd.)

This BE theory tells us that the more we see other people like or do something, the more likely we are to do that behaviour as well. If brands can find a way to show potential consumers how many people are already engaging with their brand and how much they like it, these potential consumers are more likely to engage themselves.

Sound familiar? My guess is a lot of you went directly to the same place I did: Facebook likes. This scientific theory demonstrates the importance of engaging consumers online and encouraging them to share their interactions, feelings and thoughts. If social media is all about sharing and connecting, then this scientific theory justifies the investment in social media for businesses.

Just the tip of the iceberg.

Behavioural economics is a huge field of study, and I don’t pretend to be an expert in it, but I do believe there is a lot there that marketers can learn from it. The theories above are just two of the many ways in which marketing and behavioral economics can work together. I hope you found this just as interesting and I do and encourage you to keep it in mind as you build out your social media strategies.

As you read through, did other examples of social reciprocity or social proof come to mind?

  Two ways social media and science walk hand in hand. https://wp.me/p3QRy0-j19

Science and social media relate? Who knew! #socialmediatips https://wp.me/p3QRy0-j19

#Instapet: A Pet’s Journey to #Instafame

img_0835How many hours have you wasted so far this week scrolling away the hours on Instagram? What were you looking at: cats, dogs, food, DIY, travel landscapes or endless selfies? I have easily lost 2 or 3 hours on the application in the past few days. Have you ever clicked on any pet profiles to find an insane number of followers? I have.Presenting @littleleothemorkie a little 5lbs nothing dog with 158k followers, and my good friend’s dog. Through the account, she promotes various products which she is given for free including watches, dog clothing lines, and headphones and is paid to include discount codes for monthly boxes on the profile. All this because the profile has garnered so much attention that it has been featured in magazines, news articles and on TV.

I first met Leo a little over 3 years ago, thanksgiving weekend just shortly after he had been brought home as a puppy. At this point in time my friend had not created the account. A few weeks later she sent me a screen grab of the account which already had several hundred followers. That number quickly jumped to the thousands and entered the realm of 100k. I was amazed.

I thought: can I replicate this with my own little ball of fluff, Baby?

Turns out, it’s not so easy. I created the account @babyboytabby and started posting pictures.

img_0850I didn’t realize just how much time my friend put into cultivating the online presence of her little dog. I was posting pictures but this led to few followers. My friend told me I will gain followers if I go on liking sprees. This has to be done right however, if you go too quickly Instagram will block the action for an undetermined amount of time. I learned this little tidbit of information the hard way… repeatedly. It’s not only about the liking sprees, but the content of the pictures. Candid shots are good but when it comes to animals, dressing them up and posing them seems to work best, however I don’t think my cat would appreciate wearing a tutu. I decided not to dress him up.

Not too long ago, I was supposed to be getting a second cat but he was adopted by another family. I took down all the previous pictures from the account. However only this past week I started posting to the account again and have already increased the number of followers by 200. I was shocked as to how quickly the numbers were going up.  I kept liking and the number went up another 100. Granted, the number of followers this account has isn’t even close to the 158k. I have yet to hit 1500, but I am working at it and hope to reach atleast 10,000 someday.

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Twitter:

#Instafamous #Instapets? Find out more here: http://bit.ly/2lE5Bvd #instafame #instagram #cat #catsofinstagram #dogsofinstagram #dog

Facebook:

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Have you ever wondered about famous pets on instagram, and no not one of Paris Hilton’s tiny dogs? Rising to fame on social media isn’t as simple as you think. Find out more here: http://bit.ly/2lE5Bvd

A Trip to the Brainery

A few weeks ago, two friends and I made the trek to Westboro to take a course at the Westboro Brainery. The Westboro Brainery is run out of the Dovercourt Recreation Centre, and offers inexpensive courses on a wide variety of topics, from baking to B-horror movie appreciation. As the Brainery’s website explains, it “is a citizen-led affair…classes are determined by YOU, the public. You come to us with your idea, and provided it meets the basic criteria, you have yourself a class.” The variety of courses on offer also underscores the value of having niche skills and expertise – as Roxanne Hori says in “The Importance of Managing Your Personal Brand”, “just because your attributes don’t seem special to you, doesn’t mean they aren’t valuable to others”.

The course that we registered for was “Introduction to Crocheting”, led by the Unplugged Crocheter. The instructor explained in her introduction to the class that she works in social media, and that she took up crocheting one Christmas when she was broke and needed cheap gifts. She taught herself entirely from watching Youtube videos, and became so adept at it that she ended up creating a side business out of crafting. She also explained that (as others in COM0011 have explored in discussions about digital detox) being constantly connected to social media personally and professionally was wearing her out. Crocheting offered her a way to disconnect and find balance. Having tried to find out more about the instructor beyond the Unplugged Crocheter Facebook page linked above, it seems to me that she really takes this disconnection seriously – she doesn’t appear to do any promotion of her crocheting business outside of a Facebook page, and the page doesn’t link to her on any other platforms personally or professionally.

My fellow Brainers

My fellow Brainers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While the Unplugged Crocheter was indeed unplugged, the lesson itself was very much plugged-in. A staffer from the Brainery was on hand to help participants as we inevitably struggled with our yarn and hooks, and also live-tweeted the event through the Brainery’s Twitter account. I thought this was an interesting idea, but the photos that accompanied the tweets were less than dynamic – this might be something they can improve upon.

Westboro Brainery Twitter feed

Westboro Brainery Twitter feed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As for the lesson itself, as a knitter, I expected to pick up crocheting easily. Not so much. My square washcloth somehow turned back on itself and ended up looking like a deformed bean. But, in the spirit of 10,000 hours, I thought I’d try again.

So, how did I do? Check out the video below to find out!

…I call it a qualified success.

What do you do offline to balance your online lifestyle? Have you tried taking up any new skills to bolster your offline existence? Also, are there any video editing apps for Android that you recommend? This was my first time making a video on my phone, and I used the built-in Video Editor app. It’s not bad, but I found it a bit hard to make minute-to-minute edits.

COM 0015 – Assignment 5 – Event Participation

Professional Development 2-for-1: that’s how it happened for me….

      Trying to figure out what would be the best professional development ‘EVENT’ was a tricky one.  Where do I go? What do I do?  What do I say about it?  So… I did two events in one  day… and lived to tell the tale: in blog format, no less. 🙂

      For years now, I’ve been working towards pursuing a career as a freelance superhero, writer and possibility creator.  An active part of the Ottawa Writing Circle’s Meetup group, I have attended several of their workshops, social mixers and I finally decided to venture out of my comfort zone to see what their OWC WRITE IN event had to offer.  I have always been a very solitary figure as a writer.  True, I’ve had my share of group writing and editing opportunities over the years, but this opportunity was a little bit different.

When I met up with our coordinator, Averill (@averillelisa), there were two more participants pecking away at their respective writing projects.  Prior to our meeting, I had mentioned the event on Twitter– Thank you @Averillelisa for giving me my first Twitter conversation in real-time!!  Not only did we mention each other by Twitter id: it also gave me an opportunity to learn new conversation skills with someone who actually Twitter talked back.

OWCCollage.png

The write-in group included such writing personalities as Averill Eisa Frankes (bottom left w/ me), Alexandra, Ariel, Belle Alvine, James W. Cook, Michelle Human, Nick HJ, Sanna, Tamara and me.  (all mentioned are profile names for our Meetup Ottawa Writer’s Circle Group)

      Writers periodically dropped in and introduced themselves and we did have a discreet ongoing conversation; politely asking how it was going when we caught someone blankly staring at their screen. Averill did forewarn me that there were no outlets or wifi at the world exchange plaza foodcourt, so I had made a game plan in advance. I went with my trusty fully charged MacBook Pro and I used my iPhone to call up any images that I needed to play with. Airdropping stuff from my phone to my computer has become a regular practice for me— way less grunt-work!

“Can’t edit a blank page,” is one token of writerly wisdom that Averill left me with: short, sweet and to the point.

       Same day, different location…

45 minutes after leaving the world exchange food-court?  Yeah… I managed to haul myself and my amazing computer all the way home with a quick, portable fre-fab food that I picked up at Sobey’s with roughly 5 minutes to spare.

       When I initially signed up for this online event, I thought that it might have video or some sort of interactive discussion.  They’d been reminding me via text and email and I’d even built it into my calendar as a backup.   I’ve done a whole lot of reading of a whole lot of books and listened to audiotapes with these fine fellows.  Luminaries and philosophers and authors all rolled into one: they have distinctively different appreciation for social media.

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So, I rushed home and plugged my trusty MacBook pro into my television so I could see everything hi-def… and then, it turned out that their ‘BEAUTIFUL CHAOS: How to find meaning in a messy world’ (link for encore presentation) was audio only via internet that combined the sharing power of Deepak Chopra with Eckhart Tolle’s Power of Being perspective.  Bummer.I sucked it up and listened and took notes anyway.  The simplicity of the presentation worked well: zero technical glitches or distractions throughout.

Common narratives revolved around the power of transformation on the other side of catastrophe and their usual ‘this is how you can build power from powerless’ mantra.  The one super interesting part of their presentation talked about the tole of social media in our society at large and how it can be used to make a positive impact.

Eckart made an interesting analogy to Narcissus, touching on the superficial, facade based practices of social media.  Admittedly, he doesn’t really use it much at all.  On the other side of the coin, Deepak Chopra sees the power in social media for human creativity: becoming  “a catalyst for collective awakening.”  He brought an interesting perspective to the conversation.  Talking about the power of luminaries to share their knowledge and experience with the world, Deepak sees social media as the opportunity to have more luminaries present on the world-stage.

Left exhausted and inspired by the onslaught of creative input and my own interpretation of how challenging and rewarding this social media rich, professional developmental day could be for me: my plans for a luminescent empowering career path took shape.  I’m continually proving to myself that I am willing to try the impossible.  Let’s face it, in my world ‘Impossible’ is what a scaredy cat says when confronted with something that seems too big to conquer.  Giving up the ‘im’ part of that equation is what transformation is all about–

Transform the IMPOSSIBLE into a POSSIBILITY!!

 

 

 

COM0015 Blog #3 Professional Networking Now and in the Future

I have to admit that I prefer in person networking when I meet someone for the first time. I like to get a real sense of who they are, how they represent themselves, and how they behave in the public eye. Then afterwards I will become part of their network, or ask them to become part of my network once I feel a there is a reputable connection or working relationship. Call it old fashion, but I want to make sure that when I refer one of my customers to a Real Estate Agent, or Accountant I want to make sure they care about the customers and they are professionals in their industry.

Business Networking

Photo Courtesy of >> http://www.datahand.com

On-line with in Social Media, I currently use as often as I can, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and I am part of the Mortgage Architects on-line Family.

In the next 6-12 months I do want to commit to more events found within the Facebook Professional working community. For example, there is a woman in our community that runs a “Connections” lunch for local professionals, she does most of her event planning within Facebook. I keep wanting to go, but I haven’t made the time. I want to put this on my list of events to attend. Also there is a great opportunity with our Mortgage Professionals of Canada group, they are holding a meet and greet for mortgage professionals in our local community, and also have a large following within Social Media. I would like to make sure I attend this networking opportunity, and meet some new Finance professionals in our industry. I learn something new every time I meet a new individual. Networking creates new thought processes, new ideas, new ways to handle a customer concern, and allows you to grow as a Financial Professional, making sure you don’t get “stuck” in your ways!

Social Media Sign

Photo Courtesy of >> http://www.localsphere.com

Speaking of setting “stuck” in my ways, I will to commit to growing my Professional Network on-line within Social Media!! Creating new informative posts weekly with industry content, and engaging with other financial professionals and answering customer inquiries within Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn on a regular, consistent, scheduled basis.

 

 

COM0015 – Assignment 1 -Blog 4 – Out of the Box

Combining everything that we already knew about SOCIAL MEDIA with all the cases we’ve studied and all the best tools that are to be had: it feels like I’m only ever getting half-way to a solution.  Before starting this program, I thought I had a hunch about a few tools and programs out there in the real world of business meets social media… but.. wait a minute: ‘Things are changing… how will I ever keep up?’

LISTENING + LEARNING + STAYING IN ACTION  = keep to keeping up with trends and generating new ways of looking at the world through the lens of #SocialMediaMeetsBusiness.

OutsideofBox.png

So what do I hope to accomplish with social media?  Is it working? Well, I’m constantly learning new tricks.

From what I gather, I’m using platforms that are suited to my particular field and/or project(s.)  I’m learning from others about the varied style of communication using social media = the ins and outs of sharing your message.  What works for some people is worth a try but it might not quite work for me.  I guess it’s all a question of finding a style and sticking to it..

GOING MOBILE?  Here are a few tools that might come in handy…

I’m always looking for social media inspiration: taking free webinars and online courses.  I have found a whole bunch of useful information about how mobile apps come into play

Instagram can house short videos… Hilary Rushford, of Dean Street Society, hosted a webinar called: ‘Doubling Your Instagram Following.’

Distributing a free workbook, her program talked about free tools for editing and posting images on Instagram.

VSCO CAM = where you add a photo to your library and she talked us through using the editing tools.

@HilaryRushford also talked about the PERISCOPE App = live mobile video streaming; which works really well when you’re sharing content on a road trip, from various locations.

Another useful tool that I’ve grown to love is HOOTSUITE Suggestions...

Right from my iPhone, I am able to call up HOT TOPICS that I can easily share on my Twitter and Facebook accounts.

FYI>> It gives you THREE topics to search for and you can assign unlimited accounts… so make sure that you tweak the settings before posting on multiple accounts.  Be #strategic in what you post and where.  Double check your postings on each platform to catch anything that goes wrong.  If in doubt, delete and give it another try.  Skill takes practice.

Puzzled by PINNING?

PINTEREST is a social media platform that would appear to have limited application to business… but Melanie Duncan’s webinar gave me a whole bunch of information about optimizing this platform to steer traffic from PINS back to your company site.

> The type of material you PIN is part of the formula.  Inforgraphics are the most popular format (they spread like wild fire.)

Melanie also suggest the following tools:

PICMonkey =  Protecting your content with a watermark

Easily creating infographics = www.infogr.am

Getting a Pinterest tab for your Facebook Page = www.woobox.com/pinterest

Pinterest stuff = Courtesy of Melanie Duncan (www.powerofpinning.com/course

> The BLOGEME poster thingy I built (featured image)  still lives on scribd.com which I’ve embedded on my personal blog (backdoor access = click expand button on bottom corner) http://ow.ly/MFQx302Y1sy

COM0015/Post 1 – Tools & Sources

My favourite social media listening/monitoring tool is by far Facebook Insights. It is extremely user-friendly.  After setting up my first ever Facebook page to promote female baseball in my hometown, the Insights tab was immediately available to me and I was amazed at the story it could tell.

You don’t have to be an analyst or statistician to interpret the data from the graph below. On July 30 the number of likes peaked at 30. On this date we held open registration for our younger players who are also our newest players.  Parents are told the best way to keep current on our baseball program is to like our Facebook page.

FB Likes

Corner Brook Minor Baseball Association

Our baseball association also uses Twitter. As the person responsible for the Association’s communications, including social media, I like Tweet Deck.

Tweet Deck

@CbbaCB 

What I love about Tweet Deck is its horizontal layout. I often use Twitter on my smart phone but I love the layout of Tweet Deck on my desktop.  No clicking the little icons to reveal what’s happening because the horizontal layout gives me the whole picture.

I have had my own Twitter account for several years and  have also been tweeting on behalf of our baseball association for about 18 months; however, I am still learning how to analyze the data.  I am a frequent visitor to Twitter’s support, click here to see for yourself, visit  Twitter Support.

Being able to easily analyze these two tools has helped me tremendously in my promotion of the sport of baseball. By building a following for our baseball association, I have helped contribute to the growth in our game – an 80% increase in player enrollment over 2014.

This is a skill that I can use in my professional career as an instructor. If I can help grow the number of baseball players, in particular FEMALE baseball players, then I can help increase the number of students enrolled in the programs that I teach at my college.

One of the best sources of news and updates that I like is Google Alerts. I like that I can set up as many alerts as I want on several different topics. I also love that it is delivered to my inbox. I can keep track of various forms of media such as videos, web postings, Tweets, etc.

Using Google Alerts I can easily keep track of what competitors are doing, such as our local soccer association, and even keep track of where I (or our baseball association) am in the social media sphere.  I can find conversations about both me (baseball association) and my competitors.

There are so many tools available that it is overwhelming. I like to find a few that work for me and stick to them.

 

COM0014 – Blog #3 – Food, Glorious Food

Personally, I am a foodie. I love anything to do with food, cooking, and nutrition. I follow a variety of healthy nutrition and food blogs, and I love to read their ideas, and recipes, and see pictures of food. Nothing (well, almost nothing) excites me more than a colourful, balanced plate. I love to imagine what the cook has used to put their gorgeous creations together.

It makes sense then, that professionally, I am a personal chef. I love to bring my passion for food and cooking to my clients. I help them eat in a nutritious and healthy way, which saves them time so they can focus on things they like to do more than cooking.

With regards to social media, this puts me on both sides of the screen. I am both a member of the audience, and a creator. Because of this, I feel that I am pretty typical of my target audience and the type of people that I want to attract to my blog and social media presence.

My target audience is people who like to learn about food, nutrition, and cooking. They like to learn tips to make their lives easier, and to get ideas for new recipes. They are predominately female, and between the ages of 30 and 55, with a family to feed. They are middle to upper class, with an expendable income.

My target audience is already on Facebook, so this is a great spot to communicate with them. With food being visual, pictures of food, and recipes posted to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, works well with this group.

Some people who are doing it right (in my opinion) are: http://www.foodheavenmadeeasy.com, http://www.mynewroots.org, http://www.paleomg.com. I love their clean and colourful pictures, great writing and inspiration.