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Week 14: One final reflection on social media

September 15th 2012, I google myself and I get a plethora of results pertaining to me. December 13th 2012, I google myself and I still receive the same amount of results. In terms of how I put myself into social media, nothing has changed in the past three to four months. What has changed, however, is my outlook. When I was a lot younger, I always signed up for social networking sites that I thought could be fun. I never really used them, but I always had fun with it for a little while. While I was signing up for these sites, I never payed attention to my “digital footprint”, it was more so just “I want people to know my name!” and so the adventure began.

Now, I’m seeing having signed up for all those sites was a poor decision. As I said in my earlier post, I tried to go back and deactivate my accounts – but to no avail. There was a lot I never considered with my social media impact; business being one of those things. People always said to watch out for what you’re posting on Twitter and Facebook, because you never know who’s reading your posts… I never really cared until now; until I took this course and realized how important your footprint is to your business life. I go through pictures of some of the people I have on my Facebook and I think “Would I hire that person?” I mean, if you’re wearing a crop-top that shows off your “YOLO” tattoo, nine times out of ten, I’m thinking “you make poor life decisions.”

So if I’m sitting in my bedroom, without the business experience and background thinking “I wouldn’t hire that person”, what’s it like to be the CEO of a huge company and looking at a half-naked girl’s profile pictures with gnarly tattoos? Does your opinion change once you’re in that position? I don’t think it does. Etiquette and social responsibility are evidently important, and I’ve stopped taking that for granted.

I’ve considered myself to be pretty savvy when it comes to social media. I can’t say I learned too much more than what I already knew. I can say, however, that this course has put it into perspective for me. It’s not so much “Ah! What a revelation! I’m cured of all my horrid Facebook posts and tweets!” It’s more so, I take into consideration what I’m saying before I say it. If you read my tweets, that might not be terribly apparent. Honestly, I used to tweet nonstop throughout the day; I’ve rolled it back a bit. I don’t swear in my tweets, and I don’t post horrible pictures of myself. I think that’s what this course has given me.

In relation to my first entry: not much has changed. I’m still the same avid blogger that started this course, and I will continue to be. But I’m much more aware of what I’m saying now, and I think that goes a long way in terms of business. I don’t want to end up tweeting something absolutely tragic, lose a job opportunity over it, and then regret that decision of thinking “man, this will get so many retweets”. That’s not what business is about; it’s about a clean, appropriate way of getting your message out there and making a profit. Social media is just one key element to making that happen.

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Week 7: Business + Social Media = Fun.

I find the most effective way to really create something interesting for the consumer is to think like the consumer. I believe the lines “from a business perspective” and “from a customer perspective” should go hand-in-hand. Almost like a “by the people, for the people”. So if I were to create a tactic to promote my business using social media, I would want to put myself in the customer’s shoes.

First off, I would stay away from Facebook in the long run. That’s not to say I wouldn’t create a page for my business, but I wouldn’t want to use it as thoroughly as I would other social media sites – simply because I find Facebook too busy. From my own perspective, I look at my newsfeed on Facebook and I see all these ads for other businesses and products and I just do not care. Those ads don’t affect me, or at least they don’t affect me consciously. I just feel like spending time and money on Facebook would be somewhat of a waste.

I would definitely use Twitter. Maybe that’s slightly bias because of my incredible love for Twitter – but it’s my business, my rules. I feel as though Twitter is much more direct, it’s just a couple of sentences to update you quickly and to the point. Sweet and simple. I feel like it’s much easier to interact with your followers when using Twitter, and that really makes a difference when gathering customers. In all reality, I would only want to use Twitter to interact and talk to our customers because it is the most effective, and easiest way to do so. Occasional updates and simple conversation seems to be what Twitter is best for.

A good example of this is D&Q (yes, I’m bringing it up again) and how they said “Tom will tell 19 egg jokes if 19 more people follow us today”, and proceeded with “As oeuf I didn’t have plenty to do already.” and “Omelet you in on a little secret, I only have two egg jokes.” which I found hilarious… After a while, I saw this:

I was laughing every tweet I saw… and it worked! They got their followers.

Other than using Twitter to interact easily with followers, a really good method of promoting your business would definitely be Youtube. There’s no way around it – it’s popular, it’s interactive, it’s easy to use. It’s so much fun when you know what you’re doing, there’s no denying the potency of Youtube. When I say interactive, I’m referring to the cool mazes that some Youtube users set up for their fans. For example, WheezyWaiter (one of my favorite Youtubers) created this interactive game through his videos, as a lot of popular Youtubers do.

He creates a story and let’s the viewer choose what happens in the story through a series of links posted on the video itself. Each link is connected to a different video that he has recorded which has a different outcome each time. I find it’s ideas like these that really get the viewer involved and help generate more fans.

I feel as though ideas like this would be very useful for a business, to show its customers how they are interested in entertaining them, and not just taking their money. This could be a really interesting approach to attracting people to your products. If it were me creating the video, I would create a storyline that depicts the customer trying to pick out one of our products, and give links to a handful of different ones – each link would bring them to a video generated by us showing how happy they would be if they purchased said product. How cool… someone should actually do that.

All in all, I definitely believe that Twitter and Youtube would be my top picks if I were the means behind promoting a business. They interact with their fans/customers/followers, they make it fun and amusing so you’re not just getting “BUY THIS THING” shoved in your face all the time, and they’re user friendly – making life much simpler for everyone. It just seems like a no-brainer to me… As a consumer, I want to see that the business I am giving my money to is able to have fun with their work. What’s more fun than games and jokes? Nothing. That’s what.

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Week 6: Pawsitive advertisement

When I think of pet stores, I think of walking into a building and seeing bags upon bags of animal food, chew toys, ropes, fish tanks, everything that a pet-owner needs to care properly for their little friend. I also imagine a back room with windows so customers could look in and see the small cats and dogs jumping around, excited to see a new person. When I think of this fictional store, Pet Pawsitive, I believe it to be nothing different than my original thoughts.

The back room is filled with cages with cats and dogs, taking their well-deserved afternoon naps. None of these animals are for sale, but simply being cared for and trained by professionals. The shelves are filled with organic animal foods, shampoos, and treats to ensure the owners that their pets are being properly fed. No one has to worry about leaving their pet there because of such high appraisals from higher-end pet stores. This is truly the ideal place to bring your animals.

To visually promote this business, you must consider all the factors that are involved with getting the attention of the common customer. You must attack all senses – smell, touch, sight, sound. Given the fact that this is an online video promotion, we’ll have to work with what we’re given… meaning no smelling, or touching… I don’t think we’re that technologically advanced. It only makes sense to keep your audience in mind – who are you trying to sell to? What do they want to see? Well, as a consumer myself, I like to see happy animals. I want to see professionals doing their job right, and having a good time doing it. If I see a video where my dog is jumping around and having the time of his life, I will definitely take that business into consideration. Let’s just take a glance at this video:

When I saw this video, I could not stop laughing. It made me really appreciate how much thought and effort went into making it. It was especially the lady that said “You know I can’t run in heels, Chevaun, come back!” Too funny. I would probably make a video exactly like this one. Something the consumer can relate to, laugh at, and enjoy watching. Make it super playful, with bright colors and happy music… Giving them the information they need – hours of operation, activities, programs offered, all while keeping it light-hearted and fun. I also think it’d be a pretty neat idea to show behind-the-scenes clips of trying to make the commercial – just to show how difficult it is to work with animals sometimes. I believe that would really help the audience connect with the business because every pet owner knows how tedious and repetitive you need to be when training your pet.

When promoting your business, you always need to keep the consumer in mind. Chances are, if you’re a pet-owner, you like to have fun, because that’s what pets are – they’re fun. So it only makes sense to create something that gives them the equally pleasant feeling of happiness that they feel when they’re playing with their pet. You want to connect with them on an emotional level and show them that you’re not alone in caring for your pet. For business like Pet Pawsitive, I believe it is crucial to connect with your audience and show them how you know exactly what it’s like to deal with animals, and how well you work with them.

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Week 4: @Zune

I had a really difficult time deciding what brand to write about in this blog post. I couldn’t figure out if it was easier to find one that used their Twitter account well, or poorly. I mean, on one hand, what’s to say one brand is using it well and another isn’t? Isn’t their Twitter tailored to a specific group of people? As to say that Toms will be tweeting towards the fashion audience, unlike McDonald’s which will tweet towards those who like fast food. I find it really depends on the viewer.

I looked up companies like Calvin Klein and H&M, but their Twitters were so boring – just constant “Hey, check out this new thing we have!” and “Guess who wore our product! @LadyGaga.” I mean, come on… Am I supposed to care that Lady Gaga wore your perfume? I don’t even like Lady Gaga.

That’s what really threw me off with these accounts; they were updating maybe two or three times a day, but each tweet was This person wears CK In 2 U, you should buy it! But that was it. Don’t get me wrong, CK In 2 U smells absolutely delicious and I would buy it in a heartbeat but let’s face it – Calvin Klein, you are very expensive.

So what was the final verdict? After endless searching to find a company’s Twitter that had substance, I found Zune. I’m a big Zune user, I used to use iPods but I wanted something new – something fresh, you know? And that’s what Microsoft did for me. They gave me a completely new product that was refreshing and easy to use. I absolutely love it and I don’t think I’d ever go back to an iPod. With this in mind, I visited their Twitter…

They update a couple times a day, which is a positive for me. I love Zune, but I don’t care to see their tweets in floods through my twitterfeed. The majority of their updates are “Check out the new album from #Greenday! #Uno is number one” and other cute things like that. On occasion, when there’s a trending topic (for example, when The Avengers came out on DVD), they’ll ask “Who’s your favorite Avenger?!” and retweet the replies they get. I think that’s pretty cool because who doesn’t want to get retweeted by a big important brand with almost 56,000 followers?

I looked through their tweets and I couldn’t find much when it came to engaging with their customers. That was a bit of a letdown; but I think a product like Zune doesn’t exactly need constant interaction with their customers. In reality, they seem to be using their Twitter pretty well. If you go to their profile page, you’ll see they’re following around 40,000 people, meaning they probably follow back pretty often. All in all, not too shabby. After reading their page, I feel more informed on new music. That’s pretty cool.

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