Lululemon’s Social Networking Policy

When looking for a company to write about for this blog assignment, I just randomly chose Lululemon because my cousin is running in a half marathon tomorrow. Working out was on my brain.

For the yogo/athletic apparel company, the “Social Networking” section of the privacy policy covering linking of the site to social sites or looking on the website while also being logged into social sites. It very much skims the surface for using social media and the Lululemon website.

For linking social sites to the website, Lululemon says that the two websites may share certain types of data. Then when you put information on your social site about your activities, the social sites may make it visible to other users in accordance with law and your social privacy settings.

Lastly, the policy says that social sites may be able to associate information about you gathered from the web browser and the prior information the site has about you.

Overall, Lululemon skims the surface of privacy for using social. There aren’t too many specific words used or examples in the policy that might confuse customers of the site. I did not fully understand that whole policy and therefore, others may not understand it as well. Without examples, the policy is very vague and simply a general skim of the surface for social media.

I think if they added some more explanation about the situations regarding what information they may associate with you while being logged into a social website at the same time may help decrease confusion. Will that information be used for advertisement? Will it use it to find future ideas for advertising to me on my social sites? That information may need to be stated.

Finally, there is nothing said about interaction between social sites for the company and consumers’ social sites. This should be a topic covered, as well as, who runs those sites.

You can check out the policy here.

 

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Tweeting and Gramming for #pure3600sp14

For my PURE 3600 class, we had to tweet and Instagram 36 times over the course of the semester. I didn’t realize it was going to be as hard as it was. I couldn’t get all 36 in!

I found from this assignment that I’m a passive tweeter. I don’t always tweet, I like to sit back and read other people post. But when I do take a stab at a tweet, I want it to mean something. I had to break out of that for this class and tweet a lot more than I usually do. This assignment showed me that I need to tweet more often.

I felt like using the hashtag was very hard. I kept forgetting to include it on posts that I was tweeting for the class. Eventually I got the hang of it. It was hard for me because I had to tweet with a different hashtag for another class so it was almost an overload of tweeting that I had to do.

I did find that some of my tweets were pretty relevant and interesting to my followers. I’m not super funny on twitter, but every once in a while I’ll have a good funny tweet that gets some traffic. I also could tell by the favorites and retweets who used Twitter more often among my followers.

On Instagram, I found that I really don’t post often. I used this platform quite a bit for this assignment and enjoy this platform more than I do Twitter. I think Instagram is a very underrated use of social media that brands and companies need to start utilizing.

A 21-year-old’s Spring Break in Nashville

For our first college spring break, one of my best friends and I wanted to take a road trip. Back in November when we came up with the idea, it didn’t matter where we went. When we really began thinking about it, our Google Map pin landed on Nashville, Tenn.

Why Nashville? Well, being the newly 21-year-olds that my galpal Sar and I were, and our passion for music, Nashville was a place that we thought we’d be able to explore and had always wanted to as legal aged adults, seeing how most of the music takes place in bars. Sar had a connection to the city through her parents prior stint in the music industry, and I had an interest through my brother who previously lived there for a year.

Sar and I are both communication students who literally do not stop talking and have a knack for planning just about anything you can think of. So this trip was going to be jam-packed with intensely researched and recommended go-to’s before we even left the state of Wisconsin, as well as the goal of making as many new friends along the way as we could.

Our focus for this trip was to just do everything that encompasses Nashville: the touristy spots, live singer/songwriter shows, the music in general and local favorites. But we planned on putting emphasis on hitting the local spots and doing local things to get a full Nashville experience.

So if you’re looking to make Nashville a stop on your next journey, or have been there before and are want to see new places – the rest of this post is everything we did during the four days Sar and I conquered Nashville with Milwaukee/Chicago class.

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Photo courtesy of the man taking the selfie.

The Parthenon. The place where Sara and I went to naps, relax, sunbathe and watch old men show off their frisbee playing abilities. It’s a giant park on the northwest side of Vanderbilt that was right near our hotel that has a replica of the Parthenon. It’s gorgeous. People were so active here, running, walking their dog or playing frisbee. Every chance we had free time, we headed towards the Parthenon (or Parth as the locals call it…not really- only me and Sar called it that). Not to mention, we took the best picture ever-thanks to this local. (see right)

Vanderbilt University. Tour it. It may be one of the most beautiful campuses I’ve ever seen. The old brick buildings, the traditional sorority/fraternity row and the winding paths that intertwine a huge campus make this university picturesque. But the best part of Vanderbilt is the people. And by people, I mean the friendly and welcoming fellow Chicagoan we met our first night who recommended half of the things we did on our trip and the super fun down-to-earth/comedian friends she introduced us to the night we met her at a Vandy-frequented-on-Monday-nights bar. We had made a new friend within the first three hours of arriving in Nashville.

Cafe Coco. The local cafe we had our first night’s meal at. It’s open 24-hours, serves breakfast for all 24 of those hours, offers live music at times, is a study spot for Vandy kids, serves beer and is the most hipster place I’ve ever been to thus far in my life. They are hipster from the tables to the workers. Sar and I enjoyed a delicious breakfast before we hit the town for the first time. Our waiter, Peyton, loved our Milwaukee beer connection and recommended a place in Nashville to get some of that Milwaukee cheap beer that we ended up adding to our itinerary. This cafe is a cooler version of the Brew for my Milwaukee readers. A great place for food and just hanging out.

Broadway. This was the tourist portion of our trip. We decided we were going to only head to Broadway Avenue one night during our trip because we wanted to adventure the local spots for the rest of our time in Music City. Thank goodness we decided to do this because the beers were $5 and the streets were full of tourists. However, we had an absolute blast! We went to a three-story bar: Honkey Tonk Central, bar-hopped to other popular spots including Tootsie’s, Legends and The Stage. It was a perfect first night of the trip.

We listened to amazing local artists cover everything from Nitty Gritty Dirt Band to Garth Brooks to All Time Low. Boy, did we sing our hearts out. The performers wanted to play songs that the audience knew so they would sing and tip to play more songs. Performers at these bars only make money if the audience tips, so they try their hardest to give their crowd a great performance so they can have a ball singing and dancing to their music. However, not one performer we saw on Broadway showed their songwriting ability that all of the local bars encouraged and mostly only offered as entertainment. On Broadway, you can go into any bar and probably know the song playing or have at least heard it before. That what makes this part of town so fun. By far the best part though, NO COVER. Thank you, Nashville, for helping us poor college students save a few bucks.

Music Row. This was our Monday daytime adventure. We walked here, just like we did almost everywhere during our trip, even though it was a bit too far from our hotel. Music Row makes up the heart and soul of Nashville, but it’s not actually known or promoted in this way. It’s not a tourist destination or packed with out-of-towners. It is simply two streets that house recording studios and publishing houses in literally, houses. These recording houses and publishing houses are where the songs on the radio are created and crafted into Billboard Top-100 hits and award-winning music. Literally the heart and soul of Music City. I loved seeing the secrecy and anonymity of the places that put some of my favorite songs on the radio. Outside of these houses and buildings, you can see signs awarding songwriters from that publishing house for writing songs that other artists record that reach a top spot on the charts. Definitely a cool aspect of Nashville to see.

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On stage under the neon bluebird light. Photo courtesy of Elliot, a manager of the cafe.

Bluebird Cafe. A popular joint in Nashville’s outskirts that is known for being the place that legendary artists got their start. But, as ABC’s Nashville avid watchers, Sar and I know it as a frequently featured cafe that singer/songwriters on the show display their craft and work at for a part-time job. It is literally in a strip mall far from the downtown hype, which is not what I expected at all. We wanted to listen to the open mic night that is on Mondays, but when we pulled up forty-five minutes before the doors even opened, the friendly police officer notified us that the long line waiting outside the cafe made it impossible for us to attend the event. But that did not stop us from somehow getting let in to the cafe before the doors opened to the public to snag a picture on the legendary stage under the infamous neon bluebird light and talk to one the cafe’s manager, Elliot. I swear, just ask questions and people in Nashville will really be the kindest people.

Taco Mamacita. The hip taco restaurant that is down near Music Row that we were able to get dinner at Monday night after our Bluebird adventure. (Yes, Monday was a packed day). It was a beautiful night so we sat on the rail (the ledge facing out towards the street). It is similar to Bel Air Cantina for my Milwaukeean’s out there in both the decorations but also the taco specials. In my opinion, Taco Mamacita is better though. But that’s probably because it had a sloppy joe taco. Yes, I’m serious and yes, it was delicious. We sipped sangria and learned that our waiter, a fellow Illinois native like ourselves, was an aspiring singer/songwriter living in Nashville hoping to make it big one day. Hopefully we’ll hear him on the radio in the future.

Whiskey Jam at Winners. While in Nashville, we wanted to meet up with a fellow MU student who had been interning all semester there. She suggested going to this local bar on Division Street called Winners (it has a sister bar named Losers that is identical and right next door to Winners) that has a Monday night special called Whiskey Jam. Whiskey Jam is an event that began in the 615, according the t-shirt, that features singer/songwriters. Each group/singer gets a three-song setlist, well, at least they did when we were there. The show’s two hosts are such great people who just want the audience to have fun listening to great music. The hosts also play an intro piece to get the night started which is hilarious. During the show, you may find them passing out shots of Fireball to the crowd. Not to mention, famous artists tend to frequent this event. Dan + Shay were there the night we were. Whiskey Jam was one of my favorite parts of our trip and I highly recommend attending. (I hear everyone heads to Losers afterwards). My Chicago people, they sometimes do it at Joe’s Bar!

5 Spot. On the opposite side of the city in East Nashville is 5 Spot. We were told to check out this bar on Monday’s because it’s “Motown Monday.” Note: Everything fun seems to happen on Mondays. This was the only bar that had a cover, $5, but it was so worth the hour of swing dancing and meeting hipster restaurant employees. There was a sheet hanging on the wall that was playing a projection of black and white videos. Music was coming from a DJ but it was all oldies. It was a total blast and I highly recommend it. The one bummer: it was super packed!

Flying Saucer: Finally, we have made it to our last stop on Monday night. The Vanderbilt-frequented bar that our new best friend we met recommended and mentioned that she’d be there. This bar was more open than all of the ones we had been to thus far. It was rows and rows of tables and picnic tables in the porch-ish area. It was near the train station, so the brick was all old and beautiful. Flying Saucer’s walls were covered in saucers. We learned later that if you tried all of their 200 craft beers on tap (that were $2 on Mondays- fantastic) a saucer was put on the wall in remembrance with your name on it. Sounds like an adventure to me. On Mondays you will find it full of college students. Well, at least we did. And what do you know, we ran into our new best friend! We met her awesomely hilarious friends as well and had the best time. Definitely a cool local college thing to do.

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Arrington Vineyards. Tuesday we spent the absolutely gorgeous afternoon at a vineyard 30 minutes outside of Nashville. This particular vineyard is owned by Kicks Brooks of the country duo Brooks and Dunn. I had never been wine tasting so I was extremely excited. Our taster-lady (no idea what they call the people who help you taste wine) was fantastic! We were able to try eight different wines for free and we ended up choosing to buy a few for ourselves and parents. The vineyard “house” so to speak was atop a hill, with the vines at the bottom. They grow their own grapes and only on certain wines do they import from California. My favorite wine was the Pinot Noir. Outside of the house, there were picnic tables that you could bring a picnic lunch/dinner to enjoy. So Sar and I bought a white wine and enjoyed our sub sandwiches in the 80-degree sun. I completely recommend checking this place out. It’s gorgeous and offers awesome events like “Music in the Vines” Friday-Sunday. Also, it would be a great place to host an event, say like a wedding? Find out more.

Belcourt Taps. Tuesday night, we met a family-friend of Sar’s at Belcourt Taps on the south side of Vanderbilt’s campus near Hillsboro. It was this quaint, house-looking restaurant/bar that was hosting a songwriters-round that night. This place is such a hidden gem. Four songwriters were on stage sharing their music and just having a blast. It showed us the hard work and dedication that songwriters go through to get his or her music heard. If you’re in Nashville and have an opportunity to check out a writers-round, do it!

Red Door Saloon. After Belcourt Taps, we didn’t have much planned. So we decided to head back towards Division Street. Red Door Saloon was a place that was recommended to us, so we decided to go. It was a Chicago-themed bar (which us Chicagoans loved) that was huge. We were there at an early time so it wasn’t completely packed, but for a Tuesday night, I’d say there was a decent turn out. Sar and I sat at the end of the bar just chatting to the bartender because he was awesome. The funniest part of the whole trip happened on this night. Every time the bartender asked us a questions, we answered the exact way and the exact time. So not only were we similar before we left Milwaukee, we had officially become the same person. He said eventually, “Do you guys ever not answer at the same time?” Two guys down the bar bought us a drink which we later realized was because we were asking the bartender how to order fancy drinks that weren’t our go-to beer choices. Clearly, we were new at this whole 21 thing. Apparently, there’s a spot at Red Door where you have to look through a hole in the floor and you’ll see something creepy (a skeleton) but Sar and I didn’t know that at the time. Definitely a cool place to check out if you want to bar hop.

Patterson House. Okay, this place is a MUST if you’re in the 615. It was recommended to us that night by my brother’s girlfriend. She said that we had to go grab at least one drink there because it was a little pricey but an experience. We had no idea what to expect so we said, we’re in the area, let’s just do it. Patterson House is right near Music Row and Red Door Saloon on Division Street. There’s no big sign on the outside of the building signifying that it is in fact the place we were looking for. The only way to know it is there is if you caught a glimpse of the white lettering on the window of the door or if you had been there before. We walked past it twice before we found it. And we didn’t know this before, but they want it that way. This restaurant/bar is almost like a speakeasy from prohibition era. In the waiting room for our seat at the bar, there was a curtain between us and the restaurant. There were rules we had to follow that dealt with behavior and types of drinks that were available to be ordered. For example, they didn’t have martinis. That part was very cool.

So once our name was called, we walked through the curtain to this somewhat smallish area with booths surrounding a giant bar. The menu is a book. For people who had to ask the bartender at Red Door Saloon what to order, this menu was absolutely foreign to us. Our bartender Jimmy was the greatest. He is, like many, a musician. The bartenders wore vests and button down shirts that were very classy. Us in our flannel shirts and ripped jeans looked totally out of place but we did not care and neither did Jimmy. We chatted him up the whole time and learned so much about Nashville and Patterson House. Sar had a vodka drink and I had a whiskey drink. The ice cubes were a sphere which is becoming a new fad these days but comes from history where bartenders would chunk a piece of ice off a giant block of ice and use that to chill the beverage. It didn’t melt as fast as normal cubed ice cubes. I can’t say enough about this place. The hushed music and chatter, the dark lighting, the exclusivity the bar radiated. We even saw three characters from the show Nashville in the booth kiddy corner to us. (Fun fact: Hayden Panettiere had just left before we got there.) Our one drink was $12 each, but worth every cent. Please, please, please check this place out.

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Delicious breakfast at Fido.

Fido. For my Milwaukeeans, this place is similar to that of a Colectivo coffee shop. Fido is a hipster coffee shop in Hillsboro that Sar and I had breakfast at after waking up early and checking out one of the biggest producer in Nashville right now’s recording studio, thanks to Sar’s family-friend. If you were unsure about the name, Fido’s logo is a dog. It’s a cool shop that Vandy/Belmont kids spend mornings studying and the cast of Nashville practices their lines. Unfortunately, no star-sightings while we were there but we still had a blast. I am somewhat of a coffee connoisseur (self-proclaimed) and I very much enjoyed my cup of coffee here. It’s in the hipster part of town with other street shops that we checked out.

Pangea. Sar’s favorite store. A Hillsboro street boutique that sells the funkiest, hipsterest and uniquest trinkets and clothing. If you’re in to those types of shops, check out this area of Nashville. There’s a whole street with them.

PM. An Asian-inspired restaurant that we went to on Wednesday night to meet my brother’s girlfriend. I am not one toeat Asian food, or new foods for that matter, but I loved eating here. I had a delicious wrap where I was introduced to edamame, my new favorite snack. The saltier, the better. Definitely a cool restaurant if you’re looking to try something new or grab some delicious Asian cuisine.

Santa’s Pub. The nation’s No. 1 dive bar, according our bouncer friend Carly. This place was recommended to us by Peyton (Cafe Coco cashier), Jimmy (Patterson House bartender), our Vandy friend and my brother’s girlfriend. Since we had no Wednesday night plans, we decided to give it a whirl. It was our last stop in Nashville before heading home and boy, was it the best way to end our trip.

Named after a Santa look-alike owner with a giant white beard that will show up now and again to the bar, Santa’s Pub is a doublewide trailer outside of Nashville that has $2 beers and karaoke. If that doesn’t sound appealing to you already, you clearly have no fun bone in your body. It was decorated like it was Christmas every day. The bartender, if that’s what you’d call the man standing behind the counter who gave us beers out of the kitchen refrigerator, Carter, was the best. He was so confused as to why we were there because clearly we were not locals. We told him we were recommended by many people to check this place out. We got our $2 cheap Milwaukee beer: Sar a PBR, myself a High Life, and grabbed a table to hear the sounds of locals singing karaoke. It was so great! The man in charge of karaoke was very selective on what songs would be played and who was chosen to take the stage (Sar and I were not chosen to sing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”). We heard music from Fleetwood Mac, Whitesnake and the song “Milkshake” which was a huge ladies hit. Locals and hipsters packed the trailer for the night of festivities. A local got Sar to dance. We met a guy who used to live in a neighboring town of mine that moved to Nashville. We

laughed and sang along with the karaokers. Seriously, it was one of the most fun nights. I swear you will not be disappointed after checking out Santa’s Pub.

Finally, we had to head back to Milwaukee. When we would tell people in Nashville what we had done so far, they were shocked by how much we did. They would say that people who had lived in Nashville for a year or so hadn’t even done the things we did. And I completely believe that by how exhausted we both were driving back Thursday.

But I’m so happy and thankful we did the things we did. We kept to our word and stayed local. I think we were able to see a well-rounded side of Nashville that not many people know is out there. But I’m sure that there are many more secret gems and hidden local spots we didn’t get to check out. Round two Sar?

If you’re in Nashville, don’t just do the tourist stops. Take our advice, and blend in with the locals. You will not regret it.

What We Want to Read

Content: a word that could/will make or break your brand.

Communications has evolved over my three years of college so far. Classes have been created and modified to match what is relevant and happening in the field.mWhen I first began college, most of it was social media. Brands, companies and people needed to be on social media. Now, it’s not if you’re on social media or not, it’s how you use it and what you share. Enter: content.

Why would you read something? Because it’s interesting and useful. Why would you share it? Because you feel that other people in your social network circles would also think it is interesting and useful.Where does it come from? That’s the question that is in the hands of brands.

In order for brands to achieve viewership and loyalty, there needs to be something that triggers it. Take Oreo and the infamous “Dunk in the Dark” epidemic. I bet that the following that brand had prior to that clever Tweet wasn’t nearly as strong as it is now. They shared a relevant and amusing piece of content to their audience that they in turn shared to the whole world. Now, Oreo’s brand is even more known and talked about. And their content on Twitter is fantastic. It has humor and is lighthearted. That’s their voice that people love and consistently share now. They are a brand that is doing content very well.Oreo

I’ve been very interested lately on the content that is being shared on Instagram. For me, brands that I think do it well are Nordstrom and Her Campus. I don’t normally shop at Nordstrom. But after following them on Instagram, it’s become an option in my shopping adventures. They don’t try to sell me anything, or push a product, or be an ad on my feed. The brand puts on apparel information tied to relevant and timely events that catch my attention. Their pictures are interesting and make my stop during my scrolling to check it out. I enjoy seeing their posts.

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Same with Her Campus. Marquette doesn’t even have a Her Campus chapter but I still follow them and am interested in the information they share. Again, the posts don’t make my want to unfollow them like other brands that tend to use the site for advertisements.

When it comes to Instagram, I think brands need to be creative. A picture says a thousand words, even if there isn’t much room for them.

It’s vital for brands to be content focused. You could have the best product or be the coolest organization, but no one will know that until your content is shared and made known by the consumers. It could make or break the brand. As a brand, do everything you can to not get scrolled passed or overlooked just because your content is not up to par.

What other brands do you think do content best?

A Look into My Instagram

For my PR writing class, my teacher asked us to blog about two of our Instagram photos. Here are two that give a bit of an insight into my life.

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This picture is of the people who have made me who I am. I couldn’t imagine my life without them. This was taken at my brother’s graduation and rarely do we get a picture all together because we’re not always in the same place at the same time, so I’m happy that we were able to snag this.

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This is a picture from last year at this time of my club team’s championship banner. It came into the Intramural Office and was the best present. This year, we ended up repeating as national champions so we’ll be getting another one of these! After this picture, I wrapped myself in it. 🙂

Social Media Strategy Essentials

Strategy is an important word. It’s a game plan for just about anything you do.

I’ve been learning lately all about digital and content strategies. For social specifically, there are two elements that I feel are essential to its strategy: metrics and content. These two elements are major focuses for Coca-Cola’s digital strategy.

The phrase “content is king” has been emphasized to me over and over again. After watching the Coke case study, I saw that content is the driving force behind their new website. They want relevant and purposeful content on their website to increase traffic and engagement. The idea is that they want what is posted to be shared on all of the other social outlets. Coke makes sure that the posts that are crafted pass certain requirements they feel their audience would want to read. Ashley Callahan, the presenter from Coke, described the website like a magazine.

I agree with the idea of crafting specific content, whether it be about your brand or filtered from other outlets about current topics that would be relevant to your audience. It has become important that a brand isn’t just trying to be sellers anymore. No one is interested in hearing or reading that, and we are too savvy these days to buy that type of pitch. The brand has to make a connection with us first in order to get that sale or the end transaction. Content makes that trust and attraction happen, whether it be on social media platforms, a blog or a website.

The second element I believe is important to a social strategy is analyzing the content. The metrics are vital to crafting the content for your content. It helps understand what should be on the homepage, what is easier and more likely to be shared on which social platform, who is reading what, where are they reading it at and so on. In order to be successful, you have to understand what it is that will be the success-maker and that is where metrics is key.

There are probably more essential elements that go into a social strategy, but I feel that metrics and content are two very big components. I fully believe that you can’t not utilize these two elements and be a successful brand. Does anyone not agree with that?

To learn more about Coke’s strategy, check out Ashley Callahan speak about it here.

What a + Means for a Brand

Many people know about Google+ but have no idea how to use it. I felt this way until we learned about its function and benefits in class this week.

It is a social media site for Google. However, millions of users have a Plus account, but don’t use it. Including myself.

After reading the New York Times article “The Plus in Google Plus? It’s Mostly for Google“, I learned that this social media site, even if it isn’t used, still helps Google and brands learn about their consumers. By having a Plus account, it will link to all other products like Youtube and Google Maps. Therefore, Google is able to see all your activity. Where you go, what you watch, who you’re emailing. Creepy, right?

Well for brands, using Google Plus is a way for easy promotion. This is the most important aspect in my opinion of Google+. What companies post on their Plus account, in turn, helps their search engine optimization. These posts show up in their search results, so companies should be strategic when thinking of what to post on the site.

I feel as though companies don’t understand this about Google+ because even if it may not be the most viewed social site, it is a way brands can increase their S.E.O., an important aspect of brand awareness.

As for an individual, I have yet to see any importance in using Google+ outside of increasing their own S.E.O. Not many people are active. It is similar to that of Facebook, except the layout, which in my opinion is much better. But because it’s so similar, I believe that people will just stay on Facebook and not completely switch over to Plus. People won’t want to start over to build another personal site like the Facebook page they already have. I don’t see Google+ as a go-to site any time soon.

But if you’re interested in checking it out, I would. It’s interesting seeing how content is shared and the way you can interact with other people in your circle. It’s worth the exploration.

O’Brien Fellowship Recipients Present at jPad

Hal Bernton and Zhu Ye presented for students and faculty on Wednesday, Feb. 12 in Johnston Hall’s jPad stories of their exploration and research in China and Inner Mongolia’s carbon emission reduction efforts.

  • Over a month spent touring wind farms and coal plants learning about ways the Chinese and Mongolians are attempting to reduce the production of harmful gases
  • Will compare research from their trip to the efforts that the United States are putting forth to reduce carbon emissions
  • Stories regarding their journey will be featured in The Seattle Times

“We helped take people along our exploration of Inner Mongolia through the slideshow. First visiting a wind farm, then looking at coal mining,” said Bernton, the O’Brien Fellow and The Seattle Times reporter.

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Photo taken by Hal Bernton of an open-pit coal mine.

The O’Brien Fellowship recipients spend nine months gathering research and writing stories about issues that have the potential to benefit lives and make vital impacts on society. It gives the opportunity for a professional journalist to be working hands-on in the field while mentoring young, aspiring journalists.

Diederich College of Communication | Current O’Brien Fellows

How Important Social Is to Marketing and Business

So far, my emerging and social media class has focused on using Twitter and Facebook as marketing tools for companies. But, because I’m so interested in the tracking and analysis part of social media, what I’ve taken out of the class the most is all the types of websites Dennis has shared with us that can be used as resources to keep up with social media and analyze the content.

Klout, TweetDeck, Buffer, Crowd Booster, Bit.Ly and Twitter Analytics are just a few of the many, many more we have discussed in class. I think it’s important to know these types of sites because we need to understand who is seeing what we put out, when we put it out and how it’s being shared.

I’ve learned that it’s a bit overwhelming, though. He has been throwing out so many websites we should try and applications we should use to share content and evaluate it that it’s difficult to stay on track at times. Right now as a student I think, “There are not enough hours in a day for me to do that.” But working as a social media professional, it doesn’t seem as overwhelming because that is all you have to focus on. But with social media changing so rapidly and different applications developing right and left, it seems that even working in the field would be a stressful thing.

In addition to the evaluation portion of social media, I really have enjoyed taking a deeper look into using Facebook as a marketing tool. Like many of my classmates, I have lost interest in Mark Zuckerberg’s claim to fame. I saw it as a way companies just push out irrelevant content that piles up my newsfeed. But that’s because certain companies or products don’t use it in its most effective way. We’ve learned in class the correct way to implement the site. Companies need to take advantage of Facebook advertisements, be creative and engaging with what they post and fill out their profile completely.

The way to look at social media from a business perspective is a bit different than personal, but there are ways to incorporate both mindsets. Finding the right balance of informational and engaging is the key to a good social media personality and image. 

Facebook Emphasizing Relevant Content

“Content” has been the key word my classes this semester. Producing more of it that is relevant and useful to a brand’s audience is mainly the message I’ve been receiving.

Facebook has been dialing in on producing and sharing this relevant content in its newsfeed algorithms. Reading Facebook’s news article and TechCrunch’s take on this idea of high quality content, I found that Facebook is really trying to filter out information that is beneficial to us as consumers and the businesses themselves.

I learned that sharing memes create the wrong type of awareness and popularity for a brand, when I simply thought they were funny and entertaining.They really don’t give the businesses anything to build off or benefit from if a few thousand people like their meme poking fun at a competitor or current event. It doesn’t promote traffic to events or products that the business may offer.

I, as a Facebook user, am thankful that this type of algorithm is implemented. Yes, some are funny, but others are just annoying and dumb. If my newsfeed was constantly bombarded with this information, I’d shy more away from the platform than I already do. Memes are great for things like Pinterest because they are images that are easy to ignore if I don’t want to see them or share if I think they are funny. On Facebook, they seem out of place.

On Facebook, I want to learn something if I Like a brand or company. I want to know what their next event is or if I can get a discount at their store. I don’t want to see a goofy image that has no benefit to me.

Facebook, I see what you’re doing, and I see you trying to keep people like me, who are not the biggest fans anymore, around. And now with your Paper platform? Keep it up.