My Twitter Experience

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My Twitter experience begins with this:

Prior to last semester, I did not have a Twitter account. I had to make one for a social media class that I was taking, and once the class was over, I deleted the Twitter app from my phone. Then this semester came around and I was required to reopen my Twitter account.

I had always been anti-Twitter and you might ask why, but I don’t really have an interesting answer as to why that was the case. I have always been late to jump on new social media trends which could be one possible answer, but still not very convincing. The only valid reason I can think of that may explain why I was so opposed to Twitter is that I just didn’t know that I would have any interesting to say. Sure, I could have made a Twitter account and followed a ton of people without actually putting out my own content, but that’s boring. Plus, I already had Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook so Twitter just sounded like a lot more catching up to do.

Although I still wouldn’t consider myself a Twitter fanatic, I can say that I’ve learned a few things from my Twitter experience, and I’ve summed them up into three main points that I thought were worth sharing:

1.  You are your brand.

I’m sure you’ve heard this about a thousand times already, but it’s true. You ARE your       own brand. Aside from face-to-face interaction, people can get a sense of who you are through your social media presence. Just like it’s common to want to make a good impression on people when you meet them for the first time, it’s important to make a good impression online as well. You want to make sure that your content is an accurate reflection of who you are as a person. I think it’s easy to find oneself in a particular mood  and want to use Twitter to vent but it’s not worth it. An insensitive or inappropriate tweet can cost you in the future especially when looking for a job, because employers will Google your name and might come across those tweets. Save yourself the trouble. Please.

2.  It doesn’t alway have to be funny or clever, it just has to be meaningful.

I think the greatest challenge I faced when creating tweets was that I was so preoccupied with sharing content that was witty or humorous. I spent way too much time coming up with the “perfect” tweet, or what I thought was the perfect tweet, until I gave myself a reality check. I realized that if I was thinking too much about a tweet before posting it, then I probably shouldn’t be posting it in the first place. It should be natural and organic and true to me. I learned that my tweets don’t have to be spectacular or wow worthy, they just have to be meaningful to me and to my audience. That’s all.

3.  Make sure to follow Chrissy Teigen on Twitter.

Chrissy Teigen, John Legend’s wife, is probably the funniest person I came across on Twitter. Her tweets are so genuine and unapologetically true to her, which I absolutely love. She’s a Twitter gem. Follow her. You won’t regret it, I promise.

Until next time ❤

-Giselle Adriana

 

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Social Media Usage In The Workplace

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I think social media has contributed to the current culture of immediacy. People live busier lives with little time to spare, so they look for immediate news. Along with that, people want instant gratification. Simply said, we want information right away, we want it now. It’s difficult to resist the temptation of looking at my phone when I get a Facebook notification or a Twitter update. I check Instagram constantly, always trying to stay up-to-date with my friends’ activities. I think most of us are like that. After all, I don’t think FOMO (fear of missing out) is a false concept. It must be that enough of us feel that same way.

That being said, I think it would be unrealistic for social media usage to be prohibited in the workplace. I think employees should be allowed to use company time on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media channels especially if they work in the PR field. I do, however, think that their should be set guidelines as to how much time employees can spend on these channels. I think it would be okay for them to check social media during lunch breaks and sporadically throughout the day. Social media usage should be limited to a few minutes or less at a time so it does not become a distraction or interference with work productivity. It’s up to each organization to develop a standard of social media usage.

With the growth of social media and its potential impact, many companies have developed social media guidelines or principles for their employees. Coca-Cola’s online social media principles remind employees that their use of social media platforms whether personal or professional can contribute to the company’s reputation…good or bad. That is because employees are an extension of the brand and their behavior can be traced back to Coca-Cola. It would be a shame for an employee to attach his or her inappropriate online behavior to the name of its employer. That is precisely what Coca-Cola does not want. People are brands in and of themselves, and if their brand (which social media helps shape) does not align with that of its employer, there can be conflict. Coca-Cola encourages its employees to use their best judgement when posting to social media because beyond their inner circle of friends, other employees, customers, or colleagues may come across their page. So, it’s important to be cautious and careful with regards to content and word choice in order to refrain from offending people.

Nordstrom’s social media employee guidelines are quite different than Coca-Cola’s. Nordstrom specifically warns employees that they must be approved to use the company’s logo, photos, and videos on social media. Nordstrom’s approach is  more strict…and may I say harsh than Coca-Cola’s. I say this because it uses a lot of “Don’ts” and even specifies legal implications. It almost seems like a scare tactic to keep employees off of social media. I thought Coca-Cola’s vocabulary still emphasized the importance of smart social media activity  without instilling fear. Coca-Cola’s guidelines give employees guidance and voice while Nordstrom’s are more restricting.

Until next time ❤

-Giselle Adriana

 

Kenneth Cole Twitter Fail

Like a wise man once said…”With great power comes great responsibility.” I think this applies perfectly to social media. Information travels far and fast in the world of social media, something that wasn’t possible not too long ago. Although this has been a huge milestone, it can be potentially dangerous. Once something has been posted to social media, it can never be permanently erased. Companies have the ability or “great power” to easily interact with their audiences through social media, but they must be cautious as to how and what they communicate. They may never intend to offend people with their message, but sometimes…it just simply happens…and they must roll with the punches.

Kenneth Cole learned this the hard way. Back in 2011, Kenneth Cole (the designer himself) posted this tweet to the Kenneth Cole company website:

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People began reacting immediately and furiously. The “uproar in #Cairo” mentioned in the tweet referred to the political unrest in Egypt. Essentially, Kenneth Cole used the situation in Cairo to promote its latest spring collection. The tweet did not sit well with people because they felt that Kenneth Cole was making light of the violent and deadly protests erupting in the city. I think its important to recognize the severity of the situation in Cairo in order to understand why people were so outraged by the tweet. I found a video by ABC News that summarizes the protests and I encourage you to watch it.

I side with the people on this one. Although Kenneth Cole later took to twitter to issue an apology for its distasteful tweet, the damage was already done. I think Kenneth Cole made a huge mistake. The events in Cairo and the new spring collection are in no way even remotely related. I think it was extremely insensitive on Kenneth Cole’s part to use a situation like the one in Cairo, to promote its clothing collection. Although the tweet was meant to be humorous, humor and violence never go hand in hand…especially under a realistic circumstance. The public had every right to be outraged and offended by the tweet.

It seems to me that this tweet was very spontaneous and whoever wrote it, whether or not it was Kenneth Cole himself, he or she acted impulsively. I think the person thought of the tweet, figured it would somehow be clever or funny , and posted it. I think Kenneth Cole and other organizations can avoid this sort of mess by setting an approval process. Before something is tweeted out from the company’s social media account, several people should read it. This way, they can look for language that may be offensive or misinterpreted by the public. It’s not easy to catch one’s own mistakes, but having another person look for them is much easier.

 

Until next time ❤

-Giselle Adriana

 

 

 

Influencer Marketing: The growing trend in PR

As you can probably recall from my last post, I am fascinated by influencer marketing. The power and reach of social media never ceases to amaze me, which is why I’ve decided to go a little more in depth while we’re on topic

I think it’s important to first define/explain influencer marketing just so we’re all on the same page and have a basic understanding of it. At its core, influencer marketing is when companies work with social media leaders (those with a valuable following and the potential to influence their followers) to help spread their message. By “valuable” following, I mean an audience that is relevant to the company. For example, a makeup brand like ColourPop might collaborate with a beauty/makeup blogger because their following would align with ColourPop’s target audience.

I think influencer marketing is a great addition to PR practices because it can be especially effective when trying to reach millennials or people that are familiar with social media (specifically those who look to social media for help in the decision making process)

Just a few weeks ago I came across a brilliant campaign by Dolce & Gabbana. They had approximately 20 millennial social media influencers walk the runway in Milan. This generated a lot of buzz on social media because Dolce & Gabbana used the hashtag:  #DGMillennials. The hashtag was also shared by the influencers walking the runway, spreading the word to millions of followers. What this millennial-centered show did was take an out of reach brand (because it’s expensive and not very budget friendly), like Dolce & Gabbana, and make it relatable to millennials and their interests. They made a connection with their target audience, by incorporating what is part of their lifestyle: social media.

I’ve provided a link to Dolce & Gabbana’s page where you will find a brief background on a few of the millennial influencers:

http://www.dolcegabbana.com/discover/dolce-gabbana-ss17-mens-fashion-show-millennials-celebrities/

Below is an image of Cameron Dallas (social media royalty, hence the crown)  with more than 18 million followers on Instagram, leading the rest of the millennials at the Dolce & Gabbana fashion show.

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Lastly, here is a link to Dolce & Gabbana’s website, where you can see photos of all the millennials who participated in the runway:

http://www.dolcegabbana.com/man/fashion-show/fall-winter-2017-18/catwalk/

Until next time ❤

-Giselle Adriana

My Dream Job

 

This might seem far fetched, but bare with me. A girl can dream after all can’t she?

So…in an ideal world, I would be a social media influencer/blogger. I find myself fascinated by young people, millennials like myself, who have used social media to build their personal brands and careers.

But first, a brief background on me:

As a public relations major and an advertising minor, I can’t say that I would love to spend the rest of my life (after graduation of course) dedicated solely to public relations or advertising. You see, I kinda stumbled into public relations and advertising because I had a professor whose passion for both was so contagious that even a  biomedical engineer might feel the sort of excitement I felt every time she lectured. Although I do enjoy them both, given the choice, I much rather invest in the building of my personal brand/image than that of another company. I think it’s more personal, and when things are more personal to us, we as humans tend to give it our all. That’s what I want. I want to give my ALL to whatever it is I decide to pursue in life.

And we’re back.

As I was saying a few lines up…I hope, dream, and pray that the title “Social Media Influencer” will appear on my resume a few years from now. If it happens any sooner, fantastic! Now, if I had to choose my favorite social media platform, I’d choose Instagram in a heartbeat. I’m a very visual person, which is why I think I like it so much. And if I had any luck and was able to build a large enough following on Instagram to be called a social media influencer, a public relations background would definitely come in handy.

Companies reach out to social media influencers because they have specific audiences that look to them for inspiration, motivation, and entertainment at minimum. Public relations at its core is creating/maintaining a favorable public image and growing/establishing a relationship with a company and its public. As a social media influencer, I have to know what my audience wants from me and what they expect from me. If my Instagram account is centered on adventure, travel, fashion, makeup, lifestyle, fitness, health, or whatever it may be, I have to make sure that the content I put out aligns with their wants and needs. My image has to be an accurate representation of me, and one that I’m proud of because my followers will have an understanding of who I am through the content I post. Most importantly, having PR experience would help me figure out how to best develop and maintain a relationship with my followers.

Before I wrap things up, I want to leave you with two of my favorite social media influencers. The first is Jay Alvarrez, an adventure/travel blogger:

Link to his Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jayalvarrez/?hl=en

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And SincerelyJules, a fashion blogger:

Link to her Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/sincerelyjules/?hl=en

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Until next time ❤

-Giselle Adriana

ColourPop: The social media queen

I’m sure you are tired of me by now, because ALL you hear me talk about is ColourPop. I just can’t help it. What can I say? #sorrynotsorry.

But for real guys, part of the reason why I love ColourPop so much is because they are always inspiring me. When I stalk ColourPop’s Instagram feed, I’m looking to be inspired to try a new blush, or eyeshadow, or makeup look. I want to see products and photos that are aesthetically pleasing. Of course, a little promo code here and there doesn’t hurt, but inspiration is what I’m always on the hunt for.

I mean, come on, just take a look at these:

Amazing, right?

If I was on the other side, working as the social media manager for ColourPop, my goal would be to inspire people. If people believe in you, they will believe in your product. So, if someone saw any of the four images that I shared above, odds are that they might make a purchase because the photo inspired them to recreate the makeup look. I would want to see customers sharing photos of themselves rocking ColourPop products and sharing their thoughts. Hopefully, that would mean that they were inspired by us.

In my eyes, ColourPop can do no wrong. I think their social media strategy is working, because there have been several occasions when I’ve made a purchase after seeing one of their posts. What is a girl to do?

 

Professional Panel: Networking, networking, networking. It’s all about networking.

On Wednesday, I had the privilege to hear six professionals from various agencies and companies share their knowledge, advice, and experiences with my classmates and I. As a junior in college, the reality of the real world has recently begun to haunt me. I am one who tends to fear the unknown, so imagining life after graduation can be fairly intimidating and stressful. Luckily, these professionals made me feel more at ease, but also motivated me to start putting in the work NOW.

Something that kept coming up during our discussion was networking. Networking is key, and it starts NOW. It starts with connecting with someone on LinkedIn or getting their business card after they’ve spoken in class. And yes, in the words of Victoria Hubertz, it can be”awkward as hell”. As uncomfortable as it can be, networking is crucial  because sometimes it’s not what you know, but who you know.

Here are some quotes and tweets from the panel that resonated with me:

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