My Final Reflection

As the semester comes to an end, this is my final post for my Social Media and Emerging Technologies class. At the beginning of the semester the class was asked to do a blog post about their initial thoughts about social media and how it impacts businesses. This week’s blog is to write a reflection on your thoughts about social media now that we have completed the Social Media and Emerging Technologies course. In my post I will discuss if I feel the same as my first blog post and what I have learned about social media’s impact on businesses. I will also discuss what stood out the most and what I I will take from it moving forward.

With so many different social media sites out there I do agree with my original post about social media’s impact on businesses. They are a great way for business to interact with their customers and audience in a timely matter and a way to update their audience with frequent up to date information about their company. Making a social media plan before hand and sticking to the plan is a key factor for businesses to be successful in the social media world. Once they have a plan in place it will help them stay on top of their social media sites and help them further their business.

One of the things that stood out to me was using social media measuring tools. I did not realize there was such a tool to help measure your social media sites and how audience is responding to your posts. One of the one that has help me to understand my audience is the Insights on Facebook, since viewing the Insights on Facebook it has help me understand what my audience is looking for and how they respond to my post. Now that I have a better understanding of this tool I apply it to my everyday findings when I look at my Facebook page and will continue using it in the future.

In conclusion I have come to like social media sites and what they have to offer to both personal and a business stand point. This course has taught me to open up my mind and see what’s out there in the social media world and how to utilize all of the different tools that are offered. It has shown me the benefits for business having social media sites, how they can use them and they can improve upon them.

-Janice

Social Media Measurement Tools

This week in our social media class we discussed social media measurement tools, and how businesses can use them to monitor the social media tools they use. The assignment for this week is to research three different social media measurement tools, or services describing the pros and cons of each tool. I have chosen to write about Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, and Sysomos. I will describe what each measurement tool is, the pros or cons about each tool and how business can use the data that each tool provides to measure and improve their social media outreach.

Let’s start off with Google Analytics. Google Analytics offers a verity of tools that you can use to measure the amount of traffic to your website or social media sites you use, and uses real time activity as it happens. The great features offered are My Dashboard that calculates daily visits, traffic types, and time on site by country. The standard reporting option allows business to monitor the measure of impact of social media by providing metrics with conversion rates and monetary value. It also shows who is sharing and referring your sites and where they are sharing it from. It gives businesses a better understanding who is interested in their business, and where people are seeing it. Google Analytics is a benefit for businesses so they can monitor the outreach their websites and social media sites are getting. They can see exactly what needs improvement on their sites, who they should be targeting so they can spend more time on their customer’s needs opposed to uploading content that customers are really not responding to not to mention its free to use.

The next social media measurement tool I will be discussing is Facebook Insights. This can be found if you have a Facebook Page. As a Facebook Page owner I knew it existed but I did not know exactly what it was used for until I had a good look at it. I was amazed by how much data it records for you. It shows page owners how many likes you have one your page, friends of fans, people talking about this, and weekly total outreach. It provides a chart that shows the report and days that are most popular and how many people responded to the post. It’s a great tool for business to use to monitor all of the above mention and shows where your page needs improvement. It also allows business to export the date into Excel so they can use the data in reports or for a later time. I was quite pleased at what it offers and how user friendly it was to use and it’s free for the page owners. I recommend this tool for business that have a Facebook page so they have a better understanding of what content is popular on their page, the best days to post their content and how they are reaching their customers.

Lastly is Sysomos. It provides social media measuring for Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google + and more. It’s a more in-depth measuring tool that helps measure, monitor, engage and understand social media. It provides instant access to all social media conversations. Sysomos offers a verity of features such as automated sentiment, engagement central, and connects with Google Analytics. It also provides reporting threw email, dashboard widgets, pdf reports and CSVs and a detail graph of demographics. This is great for business to use for a more in-depth look at their measurements and a better understanding of what they should be doing to increase their traffic flow to their sites. The down fall for Sysomos is that unlike the free use of Google Analytics and Facebook insights, Sysomos cost to use it.

In conclusion social media measurement tools are a great asset to business to find out what works and what does not work for their site. It will give them a better understanding of what their customers are responding to and when the best times are to post them. I would recommend these tools to business that are using social media sites as I know myself it has started to benefit my business sites.

-Janice

Social Media Planning

Welcome to my week number eleven blog post. This week’s blog post is to write a social media plan for a fictional company Extreme Promotional Materials. I will be giving a layout of a social media plan to help the company utilize social media tools for their company and why it is important to use them.  

Introdiction

Extreme Promotional Materials will be using the following social media plan to guide the company towards a successful social plan strategy. This plan should be implemented in the social media planning so the company has a clear understanding on why they are using social media tools and why it is important to use them for the company. It will pave a better line for the company on what to use the social media plan, how to use the plan, and stay on track of what they are trying to convey on their social media sites.

Mission, Vision, Goals

Extreme Promotional Materials strives to provide quality goods and services to schools, sports leagues and business. By using social media sites it will help get the message across to targeted audience and increase revenue sales. It will also educate potential customers and reoccurring customer on the products and services the company has to offer. It also allows customers to communicate with the company.

Key Messages

Extreme Promotional Materials offers personalized uniforms with lettering, and loges that can be used on jerseys or promotional material such as pens. Extreme Promotional Materials works with quality manufactures to deliver top quality products and strives to establish positive relationships with their customers. Extreme Promotional Materials has approximately twenty employees that work in sales, marketing and printing to achieve their high standard of products and services.

Target Audiences

Extreme Promotional Materials serves schools, leagues and small businesses across all of south eastern Ontario and is looking to expand into other geographic areas. By expanding it will reach more potential clients and build new relationships. With the hope of expanding there geographic area customers that are in these areas will have a chance to see what the company offers before they expand with the hope of gaining new clientele when they expand.

Social Media Tools

The social media tools that Extreme Promotional Materials will be using to help generate more audience and potential customers are Facebook and, Youtube, By using these social media tools it will give the customer a better insight of what Extreme Promotional Materials is about and how they can help with their customer’s needs. Here are some reasons on why Extreme Promotional Materials will be using these social media tools.

Facebook allows the use of real-time interaction that potential and returning customers can use to communicate with Extreme Promotional Materials. Utilizing  photo album and videos, a customer contact section will give customers a better view of what type of products are offered by Extreme Promotional Materials. With a Facebook page the customers can also find out about the company, how to contact them and provide links to their website. The customers have the option to comment on posts that have been posted, ask questions and provide feedback that are answered by the staff of Extreme Promotional Materials.

For more of video advertising Extreme Promotional Materials will use YouTube to promote goods and services they offer. By providing a visual video of what is offered it will give their core audience a better understanding of what they have to offer and why they should purchase from Extreme Promotional Materials. Video content will also help reach schools, sports leagues and business to help educate them on the types of services and produces Extreme Promotional Materials provides.

With these two social media tools it will help get Extreme Promotional Materials name out there and help promote their business. It will keep them up to date with the current technologies that customers and competitors are using. The tools should be used to target schools, leagues and business that are also using the same social media tools and reach other areas that are interested in purchasing from the company when the company expands.

 In conclusion social media planning is important for companies to use in there strategies to become successful when using social media tools. It will pave the picture they are trying to convey to their customer and keep on top of their social media status by posting frequent information about the company. It will also insure that daily to weekly post are kept up with so customers have something to come back for.

-Janice

 

 

Making a Digital Foot Print

This week in our social media class we discussed personal branding and making a digital foot print. The assignment for this week is to discuss how you plan to enhance and improve your digital foot print and build a personal brand. I will be sharing the steps I plan to achieve my digital foot print and person branding, how and why I would take these steps and why this step would be an effective.

One of the steps I would take and continue to take is Google searching myself at least once a week. By doing this it will show me what search engines have about me and the sites my name is associated to, so I can make sure that everything with my name is clean and there is no bad stuff about me. It will also help potential employers find me and potentially help me land a good job. It will also give me a good base to get my name out there.

Facebook is also an important key I think to a digital foot print. By having a Facebook page it helps people understand a bit of who you are as a person. By making sure there is no bad posting on my Facebook page or negative feedback including pictures. I will monitor the page more closely to make sure no one else is posting that should not be posted on my page. I have untagged some photos that I do not want shown on the internet and have even ask some people to take them down. I have also increased my security to who can see certain things on my page. It is important to do these steps to help my professional profile. I would like to be seen as who I really am as a person.

One of the best ways to help with a good job is by using Linked In. It will help me better connect with people and businesses. It is important because it is my online resume that employers can see to get a better sense of how I am. I do have to work on getting to know the site better but I will continue to work on learning how to use it.

These are the way I plan on using to start my digital foot print and personal branding. Each site will help me grown and help be better understand whats out there. I would engorge others to do this to show them what’s out there about them and let them know what they put on the internet stays on the internet.

-Janice

Social Media Trends

We are already in November and that means I am half way in my Social Media and Emerging Technologies class. This week’s blog assignment is to review the following websites Mashable, Social Media Explore and TechCrunch and choose an article on each site and summarize it. I will describe each of the stories I chose and links back to the original articles.

My first article is from Mashable and it’s called 50% of Web Sales to Occur Via Social Media by 2015 [INFOGRAPHIC] by Samantha Murphy, posted on November 1, 2012. Samantha explains how social media sites can bring in revenue, and it’s expected by 2015, thirty billion dollars a year is expected with social commerce sales and with half the sales occurring through social media. Infographic where collected by Vocus a cloud marketing software and stats from Gartner Research showing how brands are using social media sites .

Facebook drives traffic to business website with 26% of it being referral, with about 20% of shoppers that prefer to shop through brands such as Facebook rather than going through the website, and fans that follow certain brands are more likely to purchase from the company then those that are not fans. There are about ten million registered small businesses that use Facebook to advertise on Facebook and find that it is a valuable marketing tool to market their business.

I feel by using these social media site to promote, advertise and market businesses it will help increase revenue and get their name out there for consumers to see. They can have that personal interaction with the business that they would not have through just their website or going into their store.

My second article is from Social Media Explore and its called Becoming A Social Business Isn’t Just For Social Media by Ilana Rabinowitz posted on October 26, 2012. The article is about how it has changed our culture of how it has changed the way we expect to receive responses from people and how it has changed expectations for sharing knowledge with people we know and with the way it affects the way business need to operate. It is also mention how to develop a culture where the employees are the customers and the managers behave like community bosses.

My third article is from TechCrunch and its called OMGPOP Founder Charles Forman Raises $4M For Picturelife, An App For Backing Up Your Photos In The Cloud by Ryan Lawler posted on November 2, 2012. The article is about OMGPOP founder Charles Forman who raised 4 million dollars to for his new adventure Picturelife, which is used for backing up, storing and accessing your photo’s all in one place in the internet cloud. It can be used on mobile devices such as iPhones and iPad’s and works on the Mac computers by synchronizing you’re photos all in one place so you can access them at any time. Those that use social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Tumbler can use the app to import and sync there photo’s. You get 5GB of storage space and are operated on a freemium model with the option to upgrade.

Forman founded social gaming startup OMGPOP who was sold to Zynga for $180 million dollars for the mobile app Draw Something which he retained a stake in the company at the time but was not part of the management team for the sale. The investment comes from previous OMPOP investors and Forman has even put in some of his own money with Zynga joining the board of directors. The founding team is made of eight full time employees including Forman and is based in Chicago.

It’s great that Picturelife sync’s with social media sites and you can use them on devices at any time. It will help consumers backup their photo’s so they don’t have to worry about losing them. It would be interesting to try it out just to see what it is all about.

After reviewing these sites I personally would not use them. They do have some good information but I did find it hard to navigate threw them for specific topics relating to businesses. If I had to use one it would have to be Mashable as I found it the easiest to get my information.

-Janice

 

Flickr and Instagram for Business

Staying connected with your customers is an important key to all businesses. This week’s assignment is to choose two social media tools and write a post describing how you would use them for business. I have chosen to write about Flickr and Instagram. I will be explaining how I would use each of them for business and why I selected both of these social media tools.

Flickr offers a way to show case and promote and advertise your business. Aside from using Facebook for personal and business/companies use Flickr have the option to create a portfolio that customers can see.  By creating a Flickr page it will give customers easier access to the business information and they can keep up to date with current information and photos and video you share online.

One of the big ways I promote my photography business is through a Facebook page and Flickr page.  Potential and current customers can come to my Flickr page for a more in depth look to see what type of work I do and if my style of photography suits them.  I have utilized some of the tools Flickr has to offer such as an about page where customers can go to find information about the business and how to contact me for additional information or book an appointment, photo albums and website integration. A lot of my posting on my Flickr are sample pictures of my work or sneak-peeks of sessions that I have done, so it shows the verity of photography I do.

If I am running a promotion, contest, event or want to advertise for something I also place them on my Flickr page which I can also integrate with my Facebook page.  I find it tends to reach a lot of people especially when people “Like” or comment on a specific post or picture, as it appears in their newsfeed where people on their friends list can see it, and check it out for themselves,  not to mention its free advertisement for your business.

What I also like about having a Flickr pages is the interaction my customers can have with me. Customers have the option for sending private messages, or provide customer feedback and comments. I think of a Flickr and my Facebook page as a one stop shop where you only have to go to one location to get all your information and updates.

The second social media tool I choose is Instagram as it offers some of the same options that Facebook has to offer. You can send instant updates or messages for your views to follow, provide a brief bio with your business information and more importantly show your  photo’s. I would set up my Instagram to show recent my recent work. I would mainly use it for photos, updates, promotions, contest, customer questions and feedbacks.

I feel that these two social media sites are powerful ways of communicating with potential and current customers. With the amount of users on both sites the word of your business gets out there quicker the old school way of paper for promoting and advertising a business.

Pet Pawsitive Videos

Welcome to this week’s blog post! In class this week we talked about YouTube, and how businesses/company’s are using YouTube to promote their business with online videos. This week’s assignment is different than the previous blog post assignments. The assignment is to write a detailed post about how you would promote Pet Pawsitive a fictional business using online videos. I will be describing the types of videos I would use to promote Pet Pawsitive, the strategies behind why I would uses these types of videos, and a detailed example of what a video would look like.

To promote Pet Pawsitive I would use advertising, and marketing videos displaying the products and services they offer, current promotions, sales, and contest they are running at the time, making viewers interested in what Pet Pawsitive has to offer. I would also include business information such as mission statement, locations, hours of operation and contact information so viewers can have easy access to the business information. By using advertising and marking strategies it makes the viewers want to come into the store and see for themselves what the business really has to offer over their competitors, get a feel of the business, and see if the store is right for them.

Other types of videos I would use are educational, and informational videos demonstrating helpful techniques viewers can use at home while training their animal(s), to help them better understand how to train them. A Behind the scenes look at the store, and what products they sell as well as employees and trainers as it gives that extra special touch to the viewers.  I would also incorporate videos on community involvement, fundraisers Pet Pawsitive has held or has participated in, to show viewers how they are giving back to their communities as well as the shelters and humane societies they work closely with to give pets a new home. The more information you give to the viewers the better understanding the viewers have on the business.

Here is an example of what a video would look like to promote Pet Pawsitive:

I would get some furry friends and shoot some individual cute scenes with their owners show casing the love and playfulness pets and owner’s have with soft music playing in the background. Once the viewers get into the cute and playfulness of the video, a record scratch sound will play and in comes a funny clip of a dog running in with its owner’s shoe, while his owner is chasing after him with upbeat music playing in the background.  The next couple of clips will include more funny footage of the owner trying to train the dog,  but the dog just not getting it which leads into the introduction of Pet Pawsitive.

Looking to train your pets? You have come to the right place. Pet Pawsitive can help you with all your behavioral problems. We service Belleville and Kingston with certified trainers that focus on providing animal obedience, rehabilitation and service classes to help you and your pet get the best possible training and service you need. You can also purchase all-natural and holistic pet foods and training supplies from each of our store locations. Choose Pet Pawsitive for all your pets needs.

A background video would show footage of the same dog and its owner going into Pet Pawsitive and getting some training lessons from a certified trainer. The conclusion of the video would have the dog and owner leaving pet positive in a calm matter oppose to the dog running around at the beginning of the video.

In conclusion I enjoyed coming up with some ideas on how to make videos to promote  Pet Pawsitive. I think all business should engage in sharing videos to show viewers visuals of what they offer and it promots their business.

-Janice

How Does New York Fries Use Facebook?

This week in my social media class we were introduced to the “king of social media” –Facebook. A powerful tool that allows us to stay connected with family, friends, business/companies, and more. This week’s blog post assignment is to review a business or company on Facebook and analyze how they are using their page and interacting with their customers. I have chosen to do my blog post on New York Fries. I will be discussing page content, how they interact with their customers, and what benefits customers have by going to their page.

New York Fries grabs your attention when you first go to their page with their logo and cover image which is all coordinated with their business colours, and the type of product they sell most which are fries. Their about page gives detailed information about their company such as address, email address, website,  mission statement, description of products, and even how they make them.  At the bottom of their about page they also provide history information such as when they were founded which was 1983, when they took the poutine nationwide in 1989, their expansion into the Middle East in 1998 and Asia in 2002, and in 2011 introduced their Braised Beef and Butter Chicken Poutine. They were also received the award One of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies.

On their main page customers can ask questions, leave comments, and give customer feedback which typically gets answered within 24 hours of posting. New York Fries also updates their page with new information about products, promotions, or contest that they are running at the time. They just finished friends with benefits contest and there are plans in the works for new game. Customers can also view albums from New York fries such as products, events, and some of their restaurants. These are some of the benefits customers have when they go to New York Fries Facebook page.

Overall New York Fries has put together a good Facbook page, and utilizes their page well with the information they have input on their page to keep their customers up to date.  They keep connected with their customers with quick responses, and offer good customer service that makes their customers want to come back. I have recommend some of my family and friends to their Facebook page for more information on what they offer and the benefits they have by going to their page and would recommend it to others.

-Janice

Bank of Montreal on Twitter Review

Welcome back to another week of my blog assignments! This week we have been introduced to the wonderful world of Twitter, and how businesses use it to interact with their customers. The assignment for this week is to analyze, and record a business’s Twitter page. I have chosen to do my Twitter review on Bank of Montreal. I will touch base on their main purpose of why and what they use their Twitter page for, how to use and access some of the features to interact with Bank of Montreal and how they engage interaction with their customers, and how often they post.

Bank of Montreal has been operating their Twitter page since December 2010 according to When Did You Join Twitter with 3,219 tweets, 4, 518 followers and is following 767 members on their Twitter page. Their primary use for their Twitter page is to interact with their customers whether it is for customer issues, questions, feedback from customers, ideas, and tips. They have also made it easy to contact them utilizing a sidebar picture that gives their customers easy access to quick information such as their main website, telephone number, Facebook page, Youtube Channel, and their Community blog.

Customers can follow Bank of Montreal by clicking on the follow button to keep updated with recent post, and feedback from questions they have asked by using the mention feature @BMO or address a topic by using the hash tag #BMO. Bank of Montreal post everyday so that they can address their customer’s needs so customers usually get a response back within the same day. They display good customer service on their Twitter page, and address their customer’s issues with empathy, and understanding of their customers issues and provide a resolution or solution to the problem.

In conclusion Bank of Montreal uses their Twitter page well and is easy for customers to ask questions and get information easily. They interact with their customers daily and provide the necessary information to their customers that will aid their customer’s needs with the correct tone and understanding. I would recommend Bank of Montreal’s page to anyone I know that does business with them.
-Janice

Review on Shutterfly’s Blog

The assignment for this week’s blog post is to review a business or company’s blog, and analyze and record how they use their blog. The company blog I have chosen is Shutterfly. I will explain in my post how they use their blog and the features they offer to their readers to access the information their readers are looking for.

What is Shutterfly you may ask? Shutterfly is a web-based store where people can share, create and order products online using their favourite photos. They offer different products for any occasion such photo books, prints, cards/stationary, photo gifts, and products for home décor. Shutterfly also gives customers the ability to share projects with others, and allows their customer to store their images online.

Shutterfly not only offers their customers a website for ordering products online but they also offer a blog Picture More the Shutterfly Community Blog where customers can go to find ideas, tips, lessons, product reviews and more. With their eye catching colours of orange and white, they offer a clean and sleek look to their blog along with pictures that draw their customer’s attention. Their blog is easy to navigate through, and is set up by occasions/holidays for readers to easy find what they are interested in reading about.

Picture More the Shutterfly Community Blog uses features such as a search engine and tabs for most recommended posts, tags, recent posts, and archive posts that allows readers to quickly find specific post that relate to their projects. To engage interaction with their readers to find out what their needs, and wants are they also have a feedback section, email update subscription, and social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Blog RRS Subscription that readers can use to communicate their thoughts and ideas to Shutterfly which are all located on their sidebar. Picture More the Shutterfly Community Blog has approximately 69 contributors that contribute to their blog allowing a variety of perspectives and ideas for readers to follow. The contributors post fresh new ideas a few times a week which gets readers coming back for more.

In conclusion I find that overall the Picture More the Shutterfly Community Blog is well put together with detailed information and easy to follow and navigate through. I do find however for the amount of contributors that contribute to the blog they should have more daily post then having just two to four posts a week. I would recommend this blog to others that are interested in preserving their memories and want to create and look for new ideas on how to do so.

-Janice