Friday, 25 November 2011

Think of everyone in the world as an item on a store shelf. With over 7 Billion products to choose from how are you going to make yourself stand out for any potential “shoppers”?  Well in this day and age the best way to do that is through social networking.

Lindsey Fair is the Social Media Queen; a title given to her by one of my teachers Frank Armstrong. And it’s one that she definitely deserves. She is a prime example of why it’s important to have a great, far-reaching social network. To tell you all the many things she gained by building her social presence would take far to much time, so here is an example of how social media helped her students make some big connections.

This year Lindsey took some of her third year students to the Pivot Conference in New York to listen to leading business professionals talk about the business world. After the conference Lindsey wanted her students to thank the pivot con team for giving them the chance to attend and for such a reduced price. The students hadn’t meet the Pivot team personally so how were they to thank people they never meet? Social media answered that question. Take a look.

That video was played at the pivot teams board meeting and now those students will always be in their minds. This is how social media can help you in the future. The big thing to remember is that you must always look for ways to expand you network and be original. Don’t do or say what everyone else is saying or doing or else your just another item on the shelf that gets pushed to the back. 

Thursday, 17 November 2011

The Power of Facebook

Whatever happened to the good old days when a person could do and say what ever they want and it would have little effect on them in the future? A drunken night out on the town when you were in college or an old picture of you being less then discreet with an ex-girlfriend would fade out of peoples memories and soon be forgotten.

But in this day and age, the almighty Facebook has made privacy a thing of the past. People are constantly posting pictures and comments that thousands of people see and then share with others and soon millions of people know every thing about you. Whether it be a simple picture of you with a friend or a picture of you partying hard, everyone can see it and it may come back to haunt you years later.

One such example of how things posted on Facebook has affected someone is in the case of Ray Lam, an NDP candidate form Vancouver, B.C, had his political career destroyed after some “inappropriate” pictures on his private Facebook Wall were leaked to the press. Another is of a young British soldier was not allowed to be part of royal wedding protection detail because of comments he had posted on Facebook about royal to be Kate Middleton.

CBC’s Doc Zone did a one-hour documentary on the powers of Facebook called “Facebook Follies". You can watch it by clicking below.

Whether they effect you days later or years later, the things we post on Facebook and other social media sites will follows us all throughout our lives and could have serious effects on them. So, the next time you go to hit the “post” button, think. Is what you are posting really something you want the whole world to see? 

Friday, 11 November 2011

Some People's Children

Welcome to yet another session of Lets Talk IMC. This week in my Media and Culture class I was giving a presentation on what makes a story “Newsworthy” and I realized that the information is of the likes that would be both interesting and useful to the public at large. So, in this weeks post I bring to you the factors for a newsworthy story.

So what does newsworthy mean? Well, according to it is something sufficiently interesting to be reported in the news. So back to what makes a story newsworthy. Well, there are 12 factors:

¤ Timeliness
¤ Proximity
¤ Exceptional quality
¤ Possible future impact

¤ Prominence

¤ Conflict
¤ Number of people involved or affected
¤ Consequence

¤ Human interest
¤ Pathos

¤ Shock value
¤ Titillation component

For a full description of what each one click here.

One of the most common factors that you see all the time in news stories is exceptional quality. It’s a story that has some element that is so out of the ordinary or weird or amazing, that the news has to report it. This usually goes hand and hand with shock value (how shocking a story is).

For example of a story with the previously mentioned factors, this past Halloween in Aiken, South Carolina a woman was walking down the street when she saw two boys she recognized. When she approached the boys she jokingly said she was going to steel their candy. Check out the video to see what happened.

Well that wraps up another week of Lets Talk IMC. Thanks to all our soldiers who fight for us so we can live our everyday lives in freedom. Thank you

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Alien's attack New Jersey... Wait, What.

Welcome back all to another session of Lets Talk IMC. This week I bring you a lesson from Tom Brennen, talking about the role the news plays in our lives and how willing we are to believe.  

Back in the 1930s the only form of news was from your radio. You didn’t have video and could only rely on what the reporter told you. People put all their trust in to reporters and believed what they where being told by the reporters cause if it was on the radio it had to be true. Because of the people faith in radio something as small as five-minute time delay could cause a major incident.

On October 30th, 1938, a dramatized news radio broadcast sent thousands of Americans in to mass hysteria when they “reported” that aliens had landed on earth and were here to invade us. The hour before the broadcast their was a ventriloquist (a funny thing to have on radio) preforming and his broadcast ran five minuets over, causing all who were listening to miss the disclaimer at the beginning of the fake news cast.

For the full story you can read it at Transparency Now or listen to the actual broadcast on Youtube.

This shows how important it is for people to show some common sense when it comes to the things that reporters tell us. A five-minute delay cause mass hysteria and even people to commit suicide instead of facing the “aliens”.

In today’s media, we are a lot more cynical in what we believe and it is harder to misunderstand thanks video. Now we can see what’s going instead of relying solely on what we are told. While there are still ways for information to be distorted and misunderstood, it is easier for us as viewers find out the truth and not sink deep into mass panic.

Thanks again everyone and I hope you come back next week to learn a little more about IMC. 

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Facebook and Wikipedia: Cut from the same Cloth

Welcome back to another week of Let’s Talk IMC. This week is all about why, like Wikipedia, you should always confirm some of the things you see on Facebook with a more reliable source. If you don’t it may come back to haunt you in the future.

This week in my Writing for Marketing Communications is a perfect example of why this is an important thing to do. Our teacher for the course, Frank Armstrong, has been expecting his wife to go into labor for the past week and had informed students that classes could be canceled at any moment and that students could expect an email or a post on Blackboard for confirmation on when they would be cancelled.

So when Tuesday’s 12:30 class rolled around there were only three students and Frank present wondering where everyone was. The answer came while I was looking at the class Facebook page and noticed that there was a post saying class was cancelled. I quickly jumped into action by posting that class was not cancelled and class was about to start. The few lucky students that caught the post on time managed to make it to class almost on time.

This is a great example on the effect Facebook has on society. With a few keystrokes we can affect millions of people. One incorrect post can lead an entire class into believing a class to be cancelled. On a more substantial scale it could lead to an entire community believing a innocent man committed a crime he never committed like in the case of Triz Jefferies.

The lesson here is very similar to the one that your teachers tell you about Wikipedia. Anyone can go in and post something, but it doesn’t make it true. Beware of what might be false information and if you are unsure just check with a source that is reliable. Whether it is by accident or intentional, it effects people’s lives. Until next week everyone. Happy Halloween.   

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Warning. This Post May Cause EXTREME AMUSEMENT

Welcome back everyone to another session of Lets Talk IMC. This week has been a doozy folks let me tell you. I had a test on Monday, and three major assignments due Thursday. I have been non-stop all week, but it won’t stop me from telling you about one of my lessons this week.

This week I’m going to take you on a journey through the teachings of my Integrated Marketing Communication professor Kathy Patterson. In this week’s class Kathy taught us about envelope teasers. This is the writing or image on the outside of the envelope that makes you want to open it and read what’s inside. When an advertiser uses direct mailing as a way to reach their target, this skill is one that could make or break them.

The keys to a successful envelope teaser is to peak their interest with out lying or stretching the truth. You don’t want to have the envelope say “Open for a $1,000,000” and then it turns out to be an ad for some silly nick knack. The customer no longer trusts you and you lose their business; possibly for life.

This for me is probably on of the most effective forms of advertising. You know the saying that curiosity killed the cat? Well if you do this right that’s essentially what you are doing to your customer if you are successful in creating a great envelope teaser (not actually killing them, but you get were I'm going with it). There could be anything inside that envelope, but if you do your job right you can guarantee that it’s going to get opened.

Here are some examples of envelope teasers.

You can also visit Pro Copy Tips to lean ten steps to great envelope teasers and watch the video below for three tips for great direct mail envelope design.          

                                                                                Well that wraps up another week of Lets Talk IMC. See you all next week, and remember if the envelope says “Explosive discounts inside” proceed with caution. They might be serious. 

Thursday, 13 October 2011

All Points Addressed

Welcome again everyone and here is another session of Lets Talk IMC. This week I will be conveying the teachings from my writing for marketing communications course. Once again this class has shown me my lack of knowledge when it comes to the rules of writing.

This week in my writing course, we went through the ins and outs of APA (American Psychological Association) formatting and how to properly use APA formatting to cite others work in your own. Just as in most of my writing classes, I thought I had a pretty good understanding of how to cite other work when I use it in my own. But ten minutes into the lesson I soon realized that I once again counted my chickens before they hatched.

There are many forms of citing work and an abundance of rules for where, when and how to cite work. I could be here for several hours and still not give you full and accurate explanation of APA formatting. So, in the interest of time and accuracy, here are a few web sites that give you a full explanation of APA formatting. These are just a few of the many sites and sources you can use to understand APA.

Now for my most memorable moment of the week. This weeks, actually, happened a few weeks ago in my integrated marketing communications course but I was reminded about it this week and it ties in to my last week post. It’s a video of why you should use… well just watch and see for yourself.

I laugh every time I watch that video. That’s all for this week. This is James Loveys signing off. Check back next week for more of my insights into IMC here at St. Lawrence College. Thanks.