I am most definitely a child of the social media generation. I don’t remember a time where I wasn’t connected through the internet. It can be hard being away from friends and family and this instant-way-to-keep-up-to-date helps bridge the great divide.
Over the past weekend this instant connection became even more evident and vital. You see, being a country girl in Australia means that throughout the winter I played netball for my local Footy and Netball club, the center of our small farming community. On Saturday my old club the United Yeelanna Eagles A Grade Footy boys finally won the Grand Final. The last time this happened was back in 1987!
You’re probably wondering what this has to do with the social media? Well I was very excited that this was all happening and needed to know what was going on. After trying to get a hold of family and friends via cell unsuccessfully (they were a little too into the game) I decided to see if anyone had posted any updates to Facebook… within a minute of the final siren there it was, the little nugget of info that I had been waiting for… WE WON!!! It was 2am Saturday morning, and being on the other side of the world could have made me feel a little out of the loop. But knowing that only a click away I could still be a part of it was amazing. Seeing photos, video and excited comments going up in real time made me feel a little less like I was missing out.
I think that’s what so great about social media, it’s such an instant way of reaching people, reaching your community (even if that community is spread far and wide). So I guess I just wanted to give a shout out to Facebook, social media and the internet, helping communities everywhere stay connected!
This is netball at the top level… I was never this good.
An introduction to Footy, ouch
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Saturday marked the first time I used Twitter from a roaming event I was at.
It was a pub crawl (or as it was called on Twitter #horsecrawl) and as one might expect, it went a little off schedule. But rather than stressing about being in a different place than the Facebook event had schedules, I referred the Facebook folk to twitter for up to the minute locations and felt reassured that I was doing the good service of keeping people up to date. Thank you Twitter.
I hope to follow other #horsecrawl events in the future
A side note about projecting one image online and the reality being very different:
The main reason for being off schedule was because of efforts to brand the event with T-shirts before it started. Try finding an inkjet printer—yeesh—it was stressful. That could be a whole rant in itself, but the point is, after biking across town half a dozen times I needed to sit down. According to the internet, I was having a wild time at the Yukon Brewery… but in reality, I was sitting on a couch at home having a "who can play the saddest song" contest….
Oh, how I laughed when I realized the lie I was living. Have you had that experience? Either intentionally or not?
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There is a dirty little secret many folks don't want you to know - There is no such thing as a social media expert.
If you've attended a conference, browsed a book store or, god help you, Googled a social networking question lately, then you know what I'm talking about. The sheer volume of men and women purporting to be experts in a field that until recently didn't exist is preposterous.
Let's take Malcolm Gladwell's research and agree it takes at least 10 000 hours to become an expert at something. The math breaks down like this: A person would need to spend 5.46 hours a day researching and practicing social networking for five years straight with zero days off (Merry Twittistmas!) in order to be deemed an "expert" in social media.
How many marketing professionals have added "Social Media Expert" to their resume over the last 5 years? These are folks working full time jobs with long hours to serve clients who need sound marketing assistance but somehow they've found five hours a day to practice social media? Seriously? I can't find five hours to watch Home Alone 1 & 2 in succession. To give you an idea of the time frame we're talking about, LinkedIn & MySpace launched in 2003, Facebook in 04', Youtube in 05' and Twitter in 06'.
One more thing: I lied.
There are social media experts—they work for Facebook, Google, Twitter and other companies yet to be launched. Don't get me wrong, many folks can provide sound advice on how to use social media to communicate with your audience (Aasman included), just beware the claim of an "Expert."
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I have a secret. Saturday was my birthday.
Last year my birthday led to an e-mail tsunami courtesy of Facebook, amassing some 125+ birthday greetings posted to my wall. Yes, folks cared enough to write. No, most of them aren’t my friends.
So, I made some Facebook changes prior to Birthday 2011:
- Changed my birth date to one that's already passed
- Altered my birthday setting to private
- Adjusted my display picture to a photo of an unknown male
32 Birthday greetings (A 75% decrease over 2010), 85% of which came from true friends who know me well.
That's what i'm looking for in a social network, real and meaningful interaction.
What are you looking for?
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We recently took some time to review the social media positioning of what Forbes Magazine calls the worlds top 10 luxury brands. The results were interesting.
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There are businesses that are still unsure if they'll find their target market in Facebook. I've seen it in Whitehorse, I'm sure it's true the world over. I'm also sure the title quote of this blog entry will help convince, as will this one: a twelfth of humanity is on a single network: Facebook!
A twelfth of humanity on a single network!
Put in that kind of context, it's just crazy… and exciting.. and scary! Which do you feel?
Both of those quotes are from Lev Grossman's TIMES article about Mark Zuckerberg, Person of the Year 2010. Read it here and let us know how you feel: excited, scared, overwhelmed, charmed, chaffing at the bit....
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I came across this post a while back titled “3 Instant Ways to Make Your Social Media Better.” The post gives three basic pieces of advice on how to make your social media suck less: be a human, be yourself and treat people the way you want to be treated.
This really annoyed me at first. Why do we need to be reminded of the basic rules we learned in Sunday school as children? However, as I began to think about it and to discuss it with colleagues, I realized that we do need these reminders. Social media is ultimately about personal interaction with each other and so often when we have an avenue to funnel ourselves through we tend to skew the truth a little.
This now brings us to a really interesting topic: personal branding and how we are perceived in social media. If you think of who you are, your many profiles and how you interact with others collectively as a brand (i.e. your personal brand), these three basic rules tend to be relevant once again. In today’s business world your personal brand can get you a job, land you a client and make or break important relationships. Jennifer Morozowhich wrote a great article for the Canadian Marketing Blog on this topic.
Did you even know you have a personal brand? And are you trying to remember those Sunday school lessons now?
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I read an article a few months back that posed the question: are you productively or destructively wasting time? The article wanted to make the distinction that wasting time when it feeds a greater purpose, like re-energizing yourself, building relationships or adding important insight into your work, is actually a productive use of your time.
The author then states that when we consume our time as a procrastination tactic to avoid responsibility we are, in fact, destructively wasting time.
Ok, so enter social media and the communications field. We promote that the benefit of social media is to build relationships, which in turn will hopefully produce valuable insight into our work. I remember a time where at some offices facebook was blocked and you couldn’t download MSN messenger to your workplace computer. Now, especially in the communications field, we spend far more time each day tweeting, reading blogs, watching video posts, updating company profiles and researching new trends. So where does the line get drawn? How do we determine how much time in this realm each day is productive?
One suggestion from the article is to imagine that your boss or a well-respected colleague walked by your desk and had immediate and full access to what you were doing and thinking. Would you change your behavior? I’m not sure it’s that simple anymore . . . What do you think?
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Last week I was sent this article from Yahoo News stating that although the Old Spice Guy has garnered huge popularity and media attention, Old Spice sales are declining. The article then went on to discuss how sometimes really great creative can still fail. I was a little shocked by reading this article for two reasons; the online social media campaign launched just a week prior to these numbers coming out was, in my eyes an almost flawless strategy. I even considered switching my male body wash last time we were shopping, however I prefer the scent of Dove (when did I start caring?).
As I read all the comments for the article, talking about how the product is a dud and how the creative was too big for itself, I begin to feel this was way to early to be measuring the success or failure of the online campaign (7days). I couldn’t get my head wrapped around it and though it made a great follow up to my previous post on this campaign I chose another topic.
Now once again a week later this is all over the news. Old Spice body wash sales had zoomed 107 per cent in the last month. I have to admit that I was greatly pleased to read these articles and posts and to even learn that the Old Spice Guy himself was landing a movie role with Jen. I don’t use Old Spice, or even like Old Spice and I have never supported any of the NFL teams Isaiah (Old Spice Guy) played for. There was something though inside me that wanted this campaign to be greatly successful. How does one create that type of support, loyalty to a product I don’t even use (yet). Or is it simply that I wanted this great social media campaign to succeed so I can continue to push this form of media and these types of strategies into all of the projects and jobs we do. Maybe I just wanted the reassurance.
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I’m not the first to mention this in a blog and I surely won’t be the last. Marketing gurus and creative minds everywhere are all wishing that they had come up with Old Spice’s latest social media marketing initiative. So they should, I wish I had. The level of customer engagement and earned media is outstanding.
The popularity of the Shirtless Old Spice Guy replying on Twitter with personalized videos has even grabbed the attention of celebrities who are wanting in on the fun. You can find a great article about this campaign here at TNW.
We hope you enjoy these as much as we do and thanks to The Next Web for putting these articles together. Let me leave you with parting words from the Shirtless Old Spice Guy himself.
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I first arrived in the Yukon two years ago this August. Besides the lack of a fall season and actually how dry it was in this climate, the biggest shock came when I first realized how little the social media world was being tapped into when developing communication and campaign strategies. It’s not that the North was far behind everyone else in technology, that’s far from it. The purchase of Internet connection into Yukon households was just 2% under the national average, so that wasn’t it either. After a few initial client meetings and discussions with other colleagues I realized there seemed to be a lack of faith that social media and other forms of online dialogue were effective methods of reaching Yukoners.
Two years can make a huge difference. Just since I have been here I have seen our online dialogue grow as a territory, and it is not just for the purpose of sharing pictures or promoting a specific product. The Yukon Government has its own Twitter account as do specific departments, and Yukon Energy has been updating Yukoners with info through their blog entries. From toyshops to cake shops and even our very popular Yukon Brewing Company, Facebook pages continue to pop up and increase the dialogue between private businesses and our small Yukon neighborhood. The most impressive aspect is how these small Yukon businesses get it; they are approaching this tactic through continuous engagement with their audience, from giveaways and contests to constant updates on what’s new and innovative within their field.
I remember being stunned when trying to find an apartment and realizing that there was no Craig’s list, Kijiji or any online classifieds that were being used and updated. Since the fall Kijiji in the Yukon has been building momentum and with the launch of Yukono.com the online classifieds has been taken one step forward by initiating dialogue between fellow consumers and business owners. Here is a recent blog entry explaining Yukono from their creators at Subvert here in Whitehorse.
A lot can happen in two years. Our online community in the North is growing and expanding constantly. Whether you run your own business, manage an organization or are a part of the Yukon Government you have to remember that the Yukon is online and busy discussing your brand, with or without you.
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