Archive for ‘Algonquin College’

August 14, 2014

Your kids are sellouts, and they don’t even know it [Documentary]

Are you a sell out? How about your kid?

Frontline’s documentary “Generation Like” tells the story of how businesses use social media and big data to sell their wares to members of Generation Z (people born between 1995 and 2010).  It urges you to think about this topic from two angles. First, the teens’ perspective. Do they know they are being marketed to, and if so, do they even care? Wrapped in with this is the parental anxiety that exists for those parents who are not up-to-date with social media and digital technology. The second perspective is from the world of business marketing. The film gets into discussions about YouTube fame, collaborations, product integration, and content creation. It asks questions like: how much is a “like” worth? Or a friend? A follower? Or most importantly, the “share”.

This documentary primary focuses on the tactics businesses use to “empower” youth to spread marketing messages within their personal social media networks. One teen in this film spends her free time liking and sharing all the Hunger Games content she can possibly find to earn “sparks”. A currency only relevant to Hunger Games movies, that cannot be redeemed for prizes, but it’s used to keep score of who are the world’s biggest Hunger Games fans. Public recognition and a sense of belonging is used as the primary motivator for her behaviour.

GenerationLikeImageThe film also considers how these teens interact with traditional consumer brands, and if these youths are aware that they are being marketed to. At one point the film’s author asked members of Generation Z what it means to sell out…and none of them could give the traditional Baby Boomer or Generation X version of the term. In fact, they really had no clue what selling out was. One puzzled-looking teen thought that selling out means that there are no tickets left for a concert. Although technically correct, I can assure you that this wasn’t the context in which the term was being used.

The film definitely has some cringe-worthy moments. The most notable example I observed was a section near the end of the film when a mother discusses helping her 12 year-old daughter take and post photos to Instagram – her advice “if she (her daughter) wants to get the most likes, I know that all we have to post full body shots” (cringe).

I use this documentary as a piece of course content for the Social Media Management courses I teach in the Public Relations (PR) program at  Algonquin College. Students have written some fantastic reflection pieces on how this documentary has changed their view of how business and social media interact, and what implications it may have on their personal and professional (PR) lives.

You can watch the full doc, and access plenty of bonus content, on the Frontline website… Or use the video above to stream it directly from YouTube (there are more ads  in the YouTube version). Definitely a worth the watch.

 

 

January 11, 2014

The art of Re-Blogging

You’ve probably noticed recently that posts, or re-blogs, from different authors have been appearing on www.davidhallsocialmedia.com, and may be wondering what the deal is.

Re-blogging is quite simple. Essentially I am sharing a post from another WordPress blog on my site, with a few additional comments of my own. Once I find a post that I think my readers would be interested in, all I have to do is click a little button, add some text, and it’s done.

reblog-wordpress

I view it as a win-win-win situation for everyone involved:

  1. Readers of www.davidhallsocialmedia.com get fresh content from a different viewpoint.
  2. The original author is clearly credited for their work and has it exposed to a new audience.
  3. I get to share new voices and topics on my blog that I otherwise would not have had the opportunity to, in turn creating a better site / collection of posts.

The bloggers that you are reading in these re-blogs are students in the Social Media Management course that I teach. Their major project in first semester is to create a blog related to Public Relations, start publishing posts, and promote their work. Originally, I hadn’t planned on re-blogging their posts, but some of the posts were so interesting / well done, that I thought www.davidhallsocialmedia.com readers would find them to be a valuable read.

November 1, 2012

Social media statistics for Movember – It’s a big deal [Infographic]

Freddie Mercury flips-his-lid for Movember.

I’m in! This year I will be growing a Movember moustache. I’ve watched the fun, fundraising, and facial ugliness over the past couple years, and now I want to be a part of it. From the outside, I found it to be a very social thing. MoBros and MoSistas spent the entire month encouraging each other to grow and donate to a great cause…and much of the interaction happens on social media (more on that below).

If you’re new to Movember, here’s how they describe it on their website:

“On Movember 1st, guys register at Movember.com with a clean-shaven face. For the rest of the month, these selfless and generous men, known as Mo Bros, groom, trim and wax their way into the annals of fine moustachery. Supported by the women in their lives, Mo Sistas, Movember Mo Bros raise funds by seeking out sponsorship for their Mo-growing efforts.

Mo Bros effectively become walking, talking billboards for the 30 days of November. Through their actions and words, they raise awareness by prompting private and public conversation around the often ignored issue of men’s health.

It’s been a popular event here at Algonquin College.  Last year, our Radio Broadcasting students led the charge to raise awareness and  a few bucks. They did a great job. Their action, among other things, inspired me to get involved this year. I’ve decided to Captain a team of my own. That being said, I am actively seeking donations for my Movember team: Donate Here. The invitation is also open to join my team: Join Here. We’re totally inclusive, so ALL team members are welcome.

But the most important element of Movember is the work being done for men’s health. We all do it for our own reasons. Perhaps somebody in your life has been affected by prostate cancer. Perhaps you are trying to encourage men to take a more active role in their health and longevity. Perhaps you just like being part of a moustache-growing team dedicated to raising money and awareness. There isn’t a bad reason to join a Movember team.

Now back to looking at Movember through the social media lens. At the end of the 2011 Movember campaign, Radian6 took a look at all the social media conversations focused on Movember. Here’s what they found out:

Because it’s for a such a good cause, I’ll ask one more time…Please support my Fraken’stache this Movember – Donate Here! Thanks for the support!

September 28, 2012

Students, young professionals, and social media in the workplace [Infographic]

I work with college students everyday, and we often chat about making the transition from College to career. This includes conversations around finding their first professional job, expectations they have of the employer, and how to manage personal and professional lives. A lot of them talk about wanting to enjoy the work that they do, work for a company they believe in, have the freedom to work from home, and belong to a collaborative team environment where guidance is nearby, but not overbearing.

When we get to discussing the intersection of their social media accounts and their professional careers, they often see it as their “right” to use their own social media accounts at work. The attitude seems to be “if the job gets done, what’s the big deal if I spend 15 minutes on Facebook while having my 10:30 a.m. coffee?” And I would have to agree. If the job gets done, I have no problem with office Facebooking. It’s also quite interesting that when I ask these same students if they would be OK doing some work at  home if they couldn’t get it done in the 9-5 office hours they are paid to be there, they say they would…without hesitation.

The infographic below from OnlineCollegeCourses.com shares some findings that seem to support the anecdotal evidence I’ve seen in the attitudes of college students as they transform into young professionals.

A few statistics jumped out at me:

  • Almost 30% of college students said they value social media freedom and device flexibility over salary
  • 67% of young professionals believe their company’s IT policy needs updating
  • Nearly 70% of the same young professionals believe it is OK to use a company-issued device for both professional and personal matters

Big thanks to davidhallsocialmedia.com reader Muhammad Saleem (@msaleem) for sending me this infographic.
Social Media vs. Salary
Brought to you by: OnlineCollegeCourses.com

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