When my company started doing social media for our clients – whether as a PR “add on” or a standalone social campaign, it was time I joined the fray. So I signed up on Facebook and then started Twitter. I made a vow that all my friends on FB would only be “real” friends. Twitter, follow away, but I did block things like NYC Towing. We just don’t have that much in common.
My early tweets were nothing to write home about, usually a little cryptic and often written after a glass of wine. Sometimes they had a musical score to accompany them, written after dinner, often after I’d turned up my music and traipsed out on the balcony to watch the city lights. “Sooner or later this happens to everyone” was an oft-repeated tweet. Cheesy. I know. Then, my tweets started reflecting my day-to-day life, which I try to separate from my business world. Eventually, some of my business acquaintances became “friends” on FB. Things were getting complicated. Add a second stream of tweets for Brand Building and one’s head begins to spin.
What’s the moral of this little tale? Keeping your various “streams” organized can be daunting, but it’s worth trying because as my managing director likes to say, “That’s social media lady, deal with it…”
Today mine is beige and if you look on thousands of Facebook status updates you'll find out what color theirs is too.... I'm talking about bra colors of course. I know, I know it sounds a little perverted, but I promise it’s for a good cause.
If you're like me and have been wondering what all these random colors stated on Facebook mean, let me clear things up for you. To help raise awareness for breast cancer, people are spreading the word by updating their status with the color of their bra. This has quickly become a Facebook craze and at first may be a little confusing. But, now that you are in the know, join in. So I guess the only question left is, what color is yours??
This week New York Magazine's cover reads: "00's The World Did Not End." Unfortunately, for some it did, but that's another story. In reading the article I was taken by a piece further in - "Ten Long Years Ago." I am quoting now, "To travel back in time to 1999, you have to start by shedding a few things, as though you're going through airport security. No iPod. No Smartphone. No YouTube. No Facebook. No Twitter. In 1999, the Internet was shiny-new and just out the box, and we still believed that its greatest utility was to deliver dog food to our door and packs of gum and cigarettes to us by hand."
Yep, that was us. Where did we lose our innocence? Yet another story altogether, I suppose...
So, as I sit on the eve of launching a business that will use the Internet as its hub, I have to thank this wacky new world. I have friends my age that get all up in arms about the "Big Brother" aspect of our social universe, and honestly I can't blame them for feeling a little freaked. But Big Bro, he's here to stay, so best make him your pal. All this to say 2010, bring it on. Enough of the 00s. And yes, we did survive and many of us thrived.
Oh, and if you were wondering, my guilty pleasure is rifling through the pages of New York Magazine. I love the photos! I love the kooky stories! I love the "finds"! It's all there. Check it out...
Ah, Truth or Dare, brings back so many childhood memories. And now as an adult, we have been given the chance to channel our inner child and bring back the “I double-dog dare you…”
There’s a new social platform in town, makeadare.com, where you can challenge your fellow members to a dare, any dare. Each dare can be “hyped” or “dissed” and members must show video proof of completion of the dare. It’s a sort of Jackass meets Facebook type platform and guaranteed to make you feel like a kid again. Currently, this site is in beta, but I have a feeling that this is just the beginning of a new trend.
Go and check it out, I dare you...
It seems to me that now a days blogging is the only way to go. Whether it's micro blogging, the normal blogging or status updates, we no longer reach for our phones to make a phone call but rather to update our social media profiles. Should we no longer ask for people’s phone number, but instead their Facebook and Twitter user names? With all these new platforms emerging, I often wonder how we will ever have enough time to keep up with them all. Heck, our company devotes an entire division to managing this for clients.
Although my bread and butter is made from telling clients they NEED to be in the social media realms, I strongly believe that face time is much more important than Facebook time. Yes, it's important to have a social media presence. And yes, you should keep your virtual "friends" and followers informed, but at the end of the day, how many of these people are really your friends? If you can't make the face time, at least make the phone call. Maybe Twitter is onto this idea also since they just launched the new (but when you're reading this, probably not the latest) application allowing you to make phone calls via Twalkin. Oh Twitter, you're always on top of the trends!
I know we’ll most likely be using this new application for our campaigns, so go ahead and give us a call. But, to be honest, it’s probably easier to get in touch online ☺ Someday I’ll practice what I preach.
I am making a bold step and “exposing” a little bit of myself in this blog… so here goes. For the last few months (!!) I have found myself involuntarily thinking and processing my life events in 140 characters or less: “Kelly often wonders why people on the streets of NYC act like people can’t see them when they are picking their nose in public.” “Kelly knows the day is going to be good when the trains on the morning commute are totally in sync.” “Kelly wishes she was outside enjoying the amazing September weather today.” This happens regardless of whether or not I actually post the information in my status. My internal editor processes the content and then it goes through the “is this interesting enough for an actual update” phase.
I was secretly ashamed that I have been so overtaken by my social media (and a little worried that I might be going a little loopy) and thought I must be the only person that is doing this. The internal pressure to be clever, inventive and “create reaction” was almost overpowering. Then, breakthrough. In a casual conversation with friends the subject naturally came up and my friends admitted that they were doing the exact same thing. I at once let out a big sigh of relief and we all half joked about how Facebook, Twitter and the likes have changed the way we process our life experiences… what is too much to tell your network of 300+ friends? What is funny and are we really becoming “too social” when broadcasting all of our virtual dirty laundry?
It is undeniable the power of social media and for the hundreds of millions of users in the world it has created a platform for not only information sharing but for self-expression and promotion. I am not an anthropologist, philosopher or behavioral scholar, but it seems very clear to me (at least in my own head) that the “status update” mentality will forever change how we think and share information with our friends/followers.
Predictions are always tricky and often dangerous. But in our business, we make it our job to predict the latest and greatest trends and tools in the social media arena. Granted, we may have some missteps along the way, but why should that stop us?
So, here it is folks, the new up-and-coming social media space – TUMBLR! Although it may not be the newest platform, it is definitely the one with the greatest potential – the new “Twitter”, if you will. Tumblr has everything you could want in a social media platform: bookmarks to easily grab content from the Internet and post to your site, a popular iPhone application, audio posts, and the option for tons of free themes to personalize your space. It’s essentially Facebook, Twitter and MySpace all-in-one.
This hybrid of popular social media outlets allows Tumblr enthusiasts to ‘reblog’ each other’s posts (in much the same way that retweets distribute content on Twitter), monitor ‘Tumbularity’ (follower scoring system), pull content from those they follow (similar to Facebook and Twitter), and broadcast a ‘Tumblelog’ (essentially a blog). Using Tumblr has been described as ‘lifestreaming,’ and with all these features it is easy to see why.
Over 7 million users worldwide have jumped on this band-wagon including Katy Perry, John Legend, and Josh Groban. Tumblr is near the tipping point – all it will take is a few news/tv/celebrity mentions to catch fire.
You heard it HERE first, now go out and become part of the next big thing!
Most days, the environment at Brand Building Communications might be described as, well, intense. We’re juggling journalists who need an interview in the next hour, stylists who need diamonds in LA yesterday, client calls for advice on Facebook, locating 100 copies of a book for an upcoming event, eating at least one square meal a day, drinking water, taking a trip or two to the ladies room and the such like. You get the general picture.
So, being the masters of our own destinies that we are, we enjoy playing music at the office whenever possible to at least provide an appropriate soundtrack to the madness (if not a little respite from it). Here are some choice tid-bits of our musical stylings.
- Pandora—We have group-sanctioned stations on this Godsend of a Web site ranging from Lionel Richie to Hot Chip, from Lady Gaga to Common. I think we’ve held sing-a-longs to Lionel’s “Hello” twice just this week. The interns are slightly afraid and we like it that way.
- Laura’s French Music—Whenever we have an editor event in our fabulous turquoise Penthouse, without fail someone emails me or corners me in the kitchen to borrow the “Musique” list on my iPod. It features all my faves: Paris Combo, Eartha Kitt, Nina Simone, Ann Savoy, Charles Trenet, Carla Bruni, Coralie Clement, Soko, Serge…C’est un mélange délicieux superbe, if I do say so myself.
- Lux Team Theme Song—Each week there inevitably comes a moment when the proverbial record scratches, the music comes to a halt, and we all look at each other and say, “I feel like we need to make even more happen for the clients RIGHT NOW.” That’s when we YouTube Ms. Janet Jackson, take it back to 1986 and play “What Have You Done For Me Lately.” It’s supremely motivating. Trust.
- DesiHits!—DesiHits! is a new old friend (former client that left—sniff, sniff—and just came back on—hurray!). It’s undeniable how much Desi culture has made its way to the States since “Slumdog Millionaire” madness swept through last year. The site is a great fushion of South Asian and Western culture that even a New York City-based nerd such as myself can understand. And when the team can’t take another Black Eyed Peas or Rhianna jingle, DesiHits! always helps us spice things up a bit.
- imeem—So, we love Pandora, but our friend Melissa just put us on to imeem. It’s Pandora 2.0 to put it bluntly—as if Facebook and Pandora had an illegitimate love child at Lollapalooza last summer. It gives you more control over how your playlist (in Pandora terms this is the “station”) shapes up.
Now, please. Go out and boogie BBC-style.
Here is a paradox: my mom doesn’t know how to send a text message from her cell phone, but she is all over the internet – forums are her second home.
Moms’ social media revolution has come and gone: US moms have conquered the web and established themselves across all online fronts: blogs, message boards, groups, social networking sites – you name it. Moms have become one of the Internet’s most influential groups and desirable targets for social media marketers.
eMarketer.com estimates 34 million mothers in the US go online at least once a month – an astonishing number, especially if you compare it to the total number of internet users in Great Britain, for example, which is just 43 million!
Moms have always relied on viral word of mouth – now they just moved it online. According to a research study conducted by MomCentral.com, 94% of moms rely on recommendations from other moms when it comes to purchasing decisions.
Thanks to Mom Central, now we also know where to find moms online:
- 60% are active on Facebook
- 40% of moms are active on MySpace
- 39% are active on Yahoo! Groups
- 37% use YouTube
- 25% have their own blog
- 20% use Twitter
- 14% use Flickr
For moms who use Twitter specifically, the numbers are even higher:
- 65% actively use Facebook
- 54% blog themselves, and 99% regularly read blogs
- 48% consider themselves early tech adopters
Staying in touch with social media moms is particularly pertinent for our clients on the consumer products side. And here comes another paradox: these days, you can sometimes ignore your own mom terrorizing your cell five times a day, but you can’t afford ignoring the booming mom community online.
Check out this post on Mashable for some really useful tips on “HOW TO: Attract and Engage Social Media Moms.”
We live in the Facebook era: it’s our lifestyle, our obsession – and our curse. Getting fired for badmouthing your company on Facebook or updating your profile while out sick is not big news anymore. It can happen to anybody. (What if you… throw a sheep at your boss or a client – a.k.a. superpoke – by mistake?!)
Staying true to your company and yourself can be a challenge – especially if you are walking a thin line between Facebooking for fun and for business. Balancing your daily chatter with friends and maintaining fan pages and groups for your clients can be tricky. How would your friends react to promotional messages constantly appearing in your status updates – and occasionally, in their inboxes? What would your client think if she stumbles upon a picture of you passed out at that friend’s party last weekend?
How to make sure your personal Facebook page doesn’t harm your career, company, or your client? Here are some basic rules everyone should follow:
- Take a stand for your privacy – Learn to modify privacy settings on your personal page and applications you download. Always having to play around with privacy controls on different apps can be annoying – but it’s worth going through.
- Safety first – The first thing people see on Facebook when they search for you (and that could be anybody, from your elementary school teacher to a prospective employer!) is your profile picture. So start with a decent profile photo – plain and conservative. Modesty is a virtue.
- Stay civil – No frivolous imagery. No references to unsafe and possibly illegal behavior. No controversial political statements. Facebook is a public space, just like the streets, schools and offices of the real world. You probably wouldn’t start taking your clothes off on a lunch break in Madison Square Park – so why would you do that on your Facebook wall?
And remember: Facebook never “forgets.” Even if you post something and then take it down instantly, you leave a trace. In the blink of an eye, your every update goes viral. Be safe and keep your face(book) looking great.