Posted tagged ‘livejournal’

The ME in Social Media

April 19, 2009
My social media evolution

My social media evolution

I started my involvement in social media way back in junior high with AOL Instant Messenger spending hours after school IMing friends and crushes that I had just spent literally 7 hours with and apparently had a lot more to say. I then graduated to my first blog with Livejournal in high school to write about my dance competitions and spring break adventures for my friends (aka my dance team members and fellow spring breakers). Facebook came in college and peaked my social media interest with all of its applications and abilities. A way to connect with high school friends and college friends AND post pictures?? I’m there.

As my interest for the communication industry grew, so did my involvement in social media. A lot of people see social media as completely overwhelming and often ask me where to start. My advice: Just try! It’s been my experience that as I start experimenting with one site, it often leads me to another, each being very different and beneficial in their own ways. You have to figure out what you want out of the social media world and go from there. Here is my breakdown of the major hitters for beginners:
1. Facebook: “the connector” the largest social network available in the US. Fairly easy to use as a way to connect with friends and family. It was originally created for college students, but is now accessible to any user with an email address. Not recommended for work-related connections as it can be a breeding ground for very personal, very “not work-friendly” content through pictures, videos, wall posts and applications. Businesses are beginning to jump on board creating “groups”, which are company pages facebook members can become fans of as a form of social media advertising.

2. Myspace: “the anything goes” site. You can create a profile and connect to people you know and people you don’t know, which has caused to be quite controversial due to the unfortunate online creepers. Virtually anything and everything has been seen or advertised on myspace: pictures, videos, artwork, music, comedy, poetry movies, etc. You have the ability to express your creativity in creating your own custom background skin, automatic music selection and overall feel of your profile. Also not recommended for work use because of the potential vulgarity.
3. LinkedIn: “the professional developer” Use this site to connect with coworkers, bosses, clients, industry workers and future employers. You can virtually display your resume, personal recommendations and professional connections for your work community. Great for getting a job or keeping up with current industry topics and discussions. I highly recommend joining specific LinkedIn groups which can range in topics from city, hobby or industry. Each group will send you conversation updates directly to your email allowing you to read up on or interact with people to discuss topics relevant to you and your job market.
4. Twitter: “the social butterfly” Use Twitter to create a customized microblog of valuable information and thoughts gathered from people all over the world. Accumulate “followers” by “tweeting” interesting pictures, links, videos, quotes or just plain thoughts in 140 characters or less andgain exposure in the twitter community. Useful as advertising for local businesses or the average housewife who wants to know what Ashton Kutcher is doing at all times of the day. Can be very time consuming, however, probably one of the simpliest forms of social media to use.

If you are new to social media, try it- you may find it easier and more rewarding than you think. Once you get the hang of it, you can branch out more and more to what peaks your interests both professional and personally. Good luck!

Please meet my dear friend, social media.

April 10, 2009

My love affair for social media started way back in my high school years when I was introduced to livejournal. Granted I mostly wrote about dances, dudes and drama, I still blogged my thoughts and constantly browsed my friends’ feed for theirs. This was the beginning.
From there, I’ve grown to love the social media world and what type of exposure it provides for your thoughts, ideas, overall your brand as a person. I can only imagine the infinite possibilities of how effectively social media can be used to increase the brand awareness of a product, in fact, I’ve seen it done.
Not to mention how incredibly cost-effective social media can be. There are literally hundreds of ways to utilize social media varying in hundreds of different target audiences that are completely cost-free and hundreds more for a low fee, relative to the millions of dollars you’re paying for other emerging digital media exposure.
So why aren’t agencies jumping on board to take part in this marketing phenomenon?

Is it the amount of time needed to manage the accounts?

Is it the lack of knowledge?

Is the sheer number of social media outlets too overwhelming to bear?

So many companies, especially in this recession, are still trying to figure out what the most cost effective way is to use their dollars to target the 18-35 year old market, when the answer seems so simple to me. This generation is tech-savvy and always looking to experience new online environments, so why not at least experiment with social media technologies as a marketing tool?

Whatever the excuse is, I’m looking forward to seeing more and more agencies, large and small, add more social media to their flowcharts and thus join this wonderful marketing opportunity that so much of us are already apart of. Kudos to the groups that have already taken full advantage of this opportunity.


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