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Social Media Diary & Analysis. ChelseaWilliams

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Social Media Diary & Analysis. ChelseaWilliams

  1. 1. JOUR 4350 Ideal Post to You Your Name: Chelsea Williams Social Network Site: Instagram Name of Company/Organization: Wayne Goss (@gossmakeupartist – 392k followers) – YouTube Beauty Guru/Make-Up Artist/Cosmetic Company Owner Time of Post: 9:00AM OR 7:00PM (During Down Time/Lull’s – ex: work commute times) Post Text: “You heard it hear first! @TomFord is releasing his first ever ‘Holiday Lip Color Collection’, featuring 5 limited-edition shades! The collection will be available November 9th, 2016 at select @Nordstrom, @Bergdorfs, and @Sephora locations. The collection will also be available worldwide on while product lasts! Pre-Order your holiday beauty staple today, and be sure to use my promo-code: ‘HolidayWayneGossTM” to receive 10% off! #holidaylips #tomfordholiday #sephora #bergdorfs #nordstrom #WayneGoss Additional Content: My ideal Instagram post would also include a super aesthetically pleasing picture of the product being featured; especially if the product isn’t released yet. It get’s me super excited when someone has exclusive content. Instagram is a simple, yet fast-paced app; which is why I (and most other users) scroll through the feed very quickly, only really stopping to give something a second look that is able to catch my eye with their picture. From there, if I remain interested after stopping on the image, I will then read the caption/post information. The picture has to catch my attention first and stand out. Why would you be likely to interact with this post? I would be highly likely to interact with this post for the following reasons: 1.) Visual Aesthetics: As I mentioned before, the visual aesthetic of a post is EXTREMELY important, not only to me, but to nearly every Instagram user. It very well could be the single most important ingredient to establishing a significant presence on the Instagram platform. To many, this reason is pretty obvious. You’re drawn to pretty things. It’s a lot like when you’re at the store and you skip over the generic brand laundry detergents, without even acknowledging their existence, while reaching for your trusted Tide. Although many of those generic brands have 99% identical ingredients to Tide, most people still perceive Tide to be best laundry detergent on the market. There are several reasons why, but one of the biggest ones is that Tide’s Packaging not only appeals to consumers visually, but also it’s so recognizable! The store could cover all the labels on all of the laundry products and I would still be able to pick out the Tide products because of it’s color, size, and packaging design. You need to have, not only
  2. 2. consistently great pictures that appeal to the eye, but you also really need to have a consistent style with your photos – meaning that followers can distinguish your photo from other photos. For example: you may be offering a huge discount on a really popular make-up brand, but if the picture doesn’t catch the eyes of users, no one will ever even stop to learn about that. On the flipside: I stop on TONS of posts from bloggers, Instagram personalities, and companies with pictures that are EXTREMELY aesthetically pleasing, but offer no tags, hashtags, discount codes, collaborations or even a caption at all; but I’m still stopping on those photo’s and probably liking them because they look cool. 2.) Discount Codes/Coupons/Special Offers: EVERYONE loves a good deal, especially when the product is super expensive, and retails for $52.00 per/0.1oz like the Tom Ford Lip Stick from my post! No matter what industry your account identifies with, Instagram is one of the best ways to showcase a luxury item, and encourage sales by offering real-deal discounts. Before we even consider the discount code, through the Instagram platform, consumers (who would otherwise probably not be interested) from far and wide are exposed to your product in a real life setting. No super models, no retouch – just real life people demonstrating the product. They are seeing the products featured in the daily lives of their peers and role models, and they are seeing video demonstration examples of how to properly use the product; which suddenly makes the product seem much more more reasonable and relatable: ‘Wow, that lip stick looks so good on Kate; I bet it would also look good with my New Year’s Eve dress.’ ‘OH! So, that’s how you use a Beauty Blender! Wow, that is so much faster and easier than a foundation brush. I bet I could cut-out 10 minutes of my make-up routine in the morning if I used one.” But just because the consumer may start to see the product as more reasonable and relatable, and may even be straddling the fence on whether or not to make the purchase, the post itself is sometimes not enough to convince certain people, and will not it guarantee a sale; which is where the special offers come in. If you manage to get your consumers on the fence, you can influence a purchasing decision very easily, and confirm a sale; they’re basically searching for a reason to make the final step. If you offer a discount code (percent generally doesn’t matter – 10% off of $52.00 is only a $5.20 discount) then that customer will quickly take the bait without a second thought, justifying their purchase with a “good deal”. ‘10% off Tom Ford lip sticks?! I see them on Instagram everyday, and I’ve wanted one for over three months now! I’d be stupid not to get it, right? What if I never get another discount code again? Happy early Birthday to me!’ Discount Codes/Coupons/Special Offers are (generally) mutually beneficial collaborations, bringing positive results to both the account holder (promoter) and the company (supplier). By offering discount codes, the account holder is going to receive a lot more views, shares, and likes because they are giving a pretty significant incentive for interacting – receive the discount. Suzy: ‘Hey Kate, I know you love Tom Ford’s make-up line, and I just ran across a discount code on Wayne Goss’s Instagram for 10% off Lip Colors.” Kate: ‘Really?! Wow. What’s his handle? I’m going to follow him.’
  3. 3. Suzy: ‘It’s @gossmakeupartist, and you should totally follow him, he posts discount/promo codes all the time, posts video tutorials, and has really neat pictures. It’s totally worth it.’ That example of communicating verbally may seems a little outdated, especially when you consider the how quickly a message can spread in the world of social media. If the post makes good traction, then followers will “tag” their friends to the post, and those friends will tag their friends, and those friends will tag their friends and so on, which will increase views, increasing likes, and thus: increasing followers and coverage for your account. 3.) Associations & Collaborations: Since Tom Ford is a famous American fashion designer, he launched his cosmetic line with a pre-established brand image, and reputation as a successful and reputable business owner; so creating buzz was not difficult for him, considering that he had millions of followers already under his belt, however, stakes and expectations were extra-extra high for the line, because Tom Ford had a reputation to uphold; so the goal is to make sure reviews are positive, clean, and genuine; he might greatly benefit from collaborating with a famous social media make-up artist, by sending them free samples, and then encouraging them to share their honest reviews with their followers. If Wayne Goss (or any Instagram account holder) wants to gain followers, likes, or any type of press in general through the site, collaborating on a mutually beneficial campaign with an established brand is essential. If you are a start-up Cosmetic company, you are going to want to build relationships with more established accounts and brands (including: guru’s, make-up artists, parody accounts, etc.); a business can do this by sending samples to the account holder’s PO Box; including a press kit with a very strong focus of social media interaction in your body and including LOTS of SM information in your boiler- plate, then hopefully that account will post a “shout-out” or “review” about your product, which will get your name our there to their followers, and encourage an increase in your own social media interaction on your account (the more followers they have; they more followers you’re going to get). On the flipside: the ‘mutually benefit’ comes into play because those big names need start-ups to keep their followers interested. They want to be the first to discover new brands/products/accounts because to keep their own social media involvement steady. That is why implementing associations and collaborations on Instagram is so important to the growth of your account/brand. The only potential issues that could arise is if an account holder participates in any unethical behavior such as, being dishonest about the means and or agreement that it has with a company/brand. A code of ‘Social Media Ethics’ does, in fact, exist (officially or not). For instance, it is considered by most social media users to be unethical to accept payment in exchange for positive reviews on a product (with the exclusion of gifts/provided samples). In other words: most people would consider it pretty shady for a social media icon to rave about/promote a product, regardless of their true feelings about the integrity and quality of that product, solely because they are being paid by the company to shed a positive light on the brand. This behavior is intentionally deceitful, and thus considered to be an act of conning, because these influencers are taking advantage of their popularity and seeking ill-intended personal gain. This has been an issue within the YouTube community for several years. In the past, many users discovered that these pay-offs or “sponsorships” were being utilized by their favorite account holders, and many of them lost significant popularity and trust with followers. Today, it is considered ‘ethical protocol’ to be completely upfront with viewers, and mention in both the description box and post whether or not you are being sponsored, paid, gifted, or provided with samples by the company you are featuring. Another boiling ethical issue in the social media
  4. 4. realm, specifically on Instagram and Twitter, is the buying and selling of followers and likes. In the eyes of followers and fans, this is yet another betrayal and deception that many influencers partake in. On Instagram, the more followers and likes you have, the more the app promotes your posts and profile on the trending page. Thus, you’re then gaining non-purchased followers without truly earning them. For the same reason people choose to buy “Bounty” brand paper towels over the generic store version, Instagram users choose to follow other accounts based upon reputation. Instagram accounts and influencers are very similar to brands or companies, in the sense that you have to build genuine relationships with followers, and if people find out that you did not your reputation is compromised. When used ethically, the more followers an account (or brand) has, the more reputable, reliable, and established they tend to be, so by purchasing followers and likes, you are giving the false impression that you reliable, reputable, and established. Instead of investing the time and energy that is usually takes to build relationships and establish trust with followers, you’re cutting corners and odds are your account will end up failing. It’s kind of like someone calling themselves a doctor, and building a strong patient clientele without ever stepping foot in a medical school – they did not earn that title. On the flip side: all businesses, no matter how big or small, benefit greatly from using industry influencers to promote their product through social media, because it is effective, fast, easy, and CHEAP. Social Media is basically a modern version of ‘word of mouth’, which has been widely considered by industry experts for decades to be the most effective form of advertising. Unlike the consumer of the 20th century, the modern consumer is well aware of advertisers and their agendas, including over-exposure to ads, which is now starting to slowly backfire. Consumers are aware that they lack personal control over what, where, and how many ads they are exposed to, as an individual, in a single day (approximately 3,000 on average). Because of over-exposure and the inability for consumers to filter content anymore, most have become completely desensitized to the effects of advertising; the majority being unable to recall or remember the bulk of advertisements that they are exposed to in a day. Advertisers are losing traction through paid exposure – which is why they are now utilizing Social Media to get their messages across to consumers. When you see a cute outfit on Instagram, and you tag your friend so that she can see it too, that is using a form of word of mouth – you are (indirectly) having a discussion about/promoting that product or account holder to your friend; and unlike your friend receiving an advertisement from that same retailer via email, you and your friends are actually interacting; Thus: she will view the outfit because you told her to. Businesses GREATLY benefit from utilizing social media in more than one way. The first way that they benefit is because Social Media is a residual tool, meaning it continues to profit even after you’re done putting in the initial work (posting). Social Media operates and builds on it’s own. Once you’ve chosen the photo, the hashtags, and the caption, you’ve done everything you can do to earn coverage; after the post has been publish, fate is in the hands of the social media world. For these businesses, this is a perfect arrangement because they don’t have to put in the time themselves or hire someone to do it. The second way businesses benefit by promoting products through influencers is because it’s effective; much more effective than advertising directly from the company. The consumer relates to, trusts, and almost has a personal relationship with these influencers – even if they’ve never met them. Followers count on the fact that they will advice them in good faith – so they feel much more in control of that ‘exposure’ and more in control of their purchasing decisions. The third benefit that businesses receive from utilizing influencers is that social media is FAST. Social media can take a post from 300 views to 3 million views over night, literally – if it’s a successful post. It can also provide surprisingly reliable research that is genuine, free, and fast: For example, if Starbucks wants to know the favorite drink of Instagram users, they could ask an influencer (maybe an account dedicated to artisan coffee, or workaholics) to post the question, ‘What’s your favorite drink at Starbucks? Post below.’, on their account, and depending on the amount of followers in influencers have, Starbucks could easily generate over a
  5. 5. thousand responses in less than 24 hours to base their campaign research off of; this is amazing when you consider traditional methods of research, such as focus groups and participant surveys, which cost thousands and aren’t nearly as reliable. The last benefit that businesses have here, is that promoting a campaign or product through account holders on social media (if practicing proper ethics) costs them nearly nothing! (Basic) Social Media space is free; Instagram and Facebook don’t charge you a fee every time you publish a post on your page. The costs associated with brands utilizing social media influencers (again, if done ethically) include nothing more than free samples, gifts, printing costs for the press release included, and shipping cost to have the samples sent. In the grand scheme of brand operations, such as for Tom Ford, those costs are “chump change”; it’s nothing to them – in no way a loss. Businesses already set aside money and have a budget solely dedicated to press samples and gifting; so over-all the social media collaboration is free for not only the business but the influencer; this is a huge development from advertising methods used in the past; whereas a 30-second TV advertisement during, say, the Super Bowl can cost upper $4 million dollars – just for the air time slot. That $4 million does not include research, production, or labor costs associated with the project. Thus: collaborations and associations, if used ethically and efficiently, can be extremely beneficial to most parties.
  6. 6. Chelsea Williams “Social Media Diary & Analysis” Professor Amanda J. Weed JOUR 4350 – Strategic Social Media Due: January 25th, 2016 Social Media Diary & Analysis DAY OF WEEK & TIME I honestly did not observe a clear, obvious time pattern in my social media use. I have a set schedule that I follow every day, which includes everything from studying in the library to checking social media. I have to turn my phone on airplane mode, when I am working on an assignment or trying to get something done, and put my phone out of sight. I am an extremely easily distracted person, and I also have a terrible concept of time. Sometimes when I am working on homework it feels like I have been working for two hours, but when I look at the clock I realize it’s been five. When I study I usually have to set alarms for myself every fifteen to twenty minutes so that I can keep track of my time. Because of this, I truly can not have any distractions present whatsoever; thus, I closely schedule and manage my social media engagement around my life, and the times and days recorded are not very organic. Although the times and days recorded are strictly controlled, I did notice a pattern, which is that I like to freely check social media when I first wake up and right before I go to sleep, when I am walking to and from class, the library, and the gym and while I eat. I don’t use social media as a way to kill time, however, I do enjoy checking my platforms when I feel that I have a free moment to completely dedicate my attention to what is going on in the world. Even though this information was not discovered through the Social Media Diary assignment, while living in New York, I noticed that the vast majority of my time spent on social media was during my morning and night commutes to and from work; this was because I had an hour of free time and could pay full attention to the activity. DEVICE USED During the Social Media Diary assignment, I did not use my Laptop once to engage in Social Media. For the most part, I only use my Laptop for research, school work, and nightly Netflix. I really do not use my Laptop as a means for accessing social media. My iPhone is basically like a portable computer, and I have access to all of my social media platforms through it. So the overwhelming pattern of devices used was a 100% rate via iPhone. This could be potentially useful information in future campaigns because if my demographic is a busy professional or student, they might be easier to reach through Instagram or Snapchat. The reason for this is that the two apps are used primarily through smartphone use. The full app is not available through the internet. TYPES OF INTERACTIONS For the most part, I like to move quickly on my social media. I am someone that is much more likely to offer a like, favorite, or re-pinn before offering a share, tag, or direct message. In my opinion acts of directly sharing require a lot more work, and for someone like me who is on the go all the time, it’s a much more convenient act of engagement.
  7. 7. I think this is something to consider when I work with social media campaigns. Depending on my target audience, I might be a lot more likely to make evaluations based off of likes and re- tweets than off of tags and shares. I was honestly shocked that I did not have that many interactions with my immediate friends. The majority of my interactions were with professionals: such as magazines, editors, stylists, and bloggers. I was more drawn to their pictures and subject matter, and drawn to the fact that they could tell me something I didn’t already know about. I also think this might be because these big account holders post MUCH more frequently (4- 6 posts a day) because they have followers to keep engaged, which is why I tended to interact with them move. Most of my friends put up pictures once a week AT THE MOST – usually more like every two weeks, even if their engagement is still strong. POST CONTENT The post content that I tend to be attracted to, as show in a pattern on the Social Media Diary, is fashion – surprise, surprise. This did not surprise me. For the most part, besides my friends and acquaintances, I really only follow account that are dedicated to my interest. For this reason, it’s pretty clear to trace back this pattern. Another pattern that I observed was that, besides fashion, I really like to engage with educational posts. Although it’s a lot less dense, BuzzFeed really does provide followers with educational articles, which I really love. I also engaged with National Geographic, which was for some odd reason, much less than usual this week. I usually engage with the National Geographic GeoTag everyday on Snapchat. I really love to learn new things and keep my mind stimulated, so it really didn’t surprise me that I saw that trend either.
  8. 8. ADDITIONAL CONTENT For the most part, I am drawn to posts that provide additional content. Although I tend to scroll quickly through my Instagram and Pinterest feed until something jumps out at me, something else that can cause me to give a second look is additional content, such as: hashtags, use tags, website links, etc. The reason I think I additional content catches my eye is because it gives you more information about the purpose of the picture. One good example from my Social Media Diary is a post from @karen_walker – the post is promoting an event for National Mill Dog Rescue and uses several hashtags, user tags, and it just caused me to further investigate. From the hashtags and user tags I was able to find out more about the organization and the people involved in promoting the event. So I think additional content is super important. If I pass a cool “OOTD”, if they don’t either tag the designers or utilize hashtags, I usually skip over it. WHY DID YOU INTERACT My reasons for interacting really varied in this process. Some common reasons included: really appreciating the featured fashion in the post, being the fan of a celebrity, having worked for or with certain people at my internship that I really liked, humor, and having close relationships with friends. Although all of these things vary, the one common denominator is: emotions. I seemed to interact much more with people who had me feel a certain way; whether that be nostalgic, happy, creative, or excited, I did not interact with a single post that did not attempt to evoke some level of emotional response. I very easily dismissed posts with captions that were unrelated to the post, cliché, or lazy. Sure, your outfit might be on point, but if you are not even tagging or mentioning designers, projects, inspirations, or collections then why are you a fashion blogger? Because that is what a fashion blogger does for a living. Shallow posts really turn me off. When people use emotion they are much more relatable to me.
  9. 9. CONCLUSION/REFLECTION: Although I’m only twenty-two, I am old enough to remember that it wasn’t very long ago that computers, phones, technology, and social media were completely different than they are today. In the late 1990’s, I remember my parents using AOL to check their first generation e-mail’s. We would wait several minutes for the server to (maybe) connect, being forced to listen to the obnoxious (and bizarre) Dial-Up tone, as the twenty-pound monitor flickered, and the two-and- a- half-foot tall, hard drive tower revved its internal ‘fan’ (which just meant: ‘it’s working hard’, according to my mother). The first time I ever saw a Laptop was when I was five years old. My mom bought it so she could transport work assignments without having to use ‘floppy disks’ (first generation jump-drives) – it weighed a solid fifteen pounds, and required Ethernet connection to get any sort of internet connection – no wireless, yet, boys and girls! Over the next couple of years’ technology advanced at a rapid pace. Computers and laptops alike, condensed in size, but increased in capabilities. Screens became smaller, picture displays were clearer, and eventually, (although limited in terms of range and speed) Wireless Internet became a mainstream staple in homes all across the country (around 2001). My personal interaction with technology didn’t truly start until I was about twelve years old, in sixth grade; but during that four-year gap, computer advancement was so fast that by the time people decided to purchase the ‘2.0’ model of a computer, they had already released the ‘3.0’ model – people couldn’t keep up. By the time I entered sixth-grade at the age of twelve, in 2006, computers had advanced so much that they were barely recognizable. Screens were thinner (no more than a couple of inches think), weighed less than five pounds, and were much larger in width and height. CPU’s were significantly faster and hard drives could hold more files than any one person could ever fill. School administrators now had the power to block certain websites, require password verification for desktop access, communicate within a district-wide email database, and even post students current grades online for parents to view anytime, from home. As a hormonal pre-teen, my main focus at the time was socializing – which is why, in 2006, my friends and I adopted a new branch of communication ‘’. Although Myspace had been around for about three years’ prior (founded in 2003), it was new territory to us. We could completely personalize our profiles to reflect our styles. This was the first time I was exposed to social media. Around the same time that I began using ‘social media’ site, online “STRANGER DANGER” became a huge panicking among parents across the country. A huge majority of adults (parents, teachers, etc,) were terrified by the ‘social media’ movement, and the alleged risks associated with disclosing personal information online. An overwhelming majority of parents forbid their children from opening accounts, due to potential safety risks involving minors/and the lack of supervision among socializing teens. Overall, it was a generally agreed upon opinion: adults either hated social media or didn’t care about it enough to form an opinion (aka they didn’t understand it) – which is why the average age groups of user consisted primarily of teenagers and young adults up until the last five years. We actively used the platform for the next three to four years, until something newer and cooler came out – a reoccurring cycle we know see in modern social media.
  10. 10. By the time I entered high school, was the hot social media platform – no one really used Myspace anymore. Facebook was much more clean looking (less creative; more logical) – no more crazy colored layouts, startling emo music, or top friends – it was about you, your friends, and communicating through words and pictures. Computers continued to advance – getting even faster and smaller and now even sleeker looking. Internet was now being accessed through smart phones, using basic ‘social media’ apps such as Twitter and Facebook. Social media, as we know it today, did not begin to take full effect until I had graduated from high school. It began to form with the explosion of multiplatform social networks; such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, and Instagram – in addition to Facebook. All of the sudden everyone was joining Facebook. Parents, neighbors, bosses, and even grandparents – Facebook suddenly wasn’t so bad and scary, it fact, it was widely seen as (and still is today) a great communication tool. Once active membership among platforms grew, many businesses decided to take advantage of ‘social media’– once discovering the potential reach that social media offered by delivering controlled information to a LOT of different people (over 1 billion current active users from around the world), and discovering the significant cost-saving potential of using social media; one by one, brands began to create business pages, which served to promote the advertisement of products, launching of PR campaigns, development of more personal relationships with consumers, and encouraging engagement among the brand’s community – a practice that has been widely successful for thousands of brands all over the globe. Over the past five years, people have finally let go of their fears and apprehensions, and begun to take full advantage of what social media has the potential to do. People actively use social media in countless different ways, including: landing jobs, exchanging project ideas, expressing passions, completing academic assignments as a group, sharing talents, selling products, and creating buzz for events, companies, projects, people, places, products, and ideas. The SNS’s are no longer just seen as a means for ‘staying in touch’ with old friends, or as a distraction for teenagers to socialize instead of study – social media has developed into a multi-purpose communication and networking tool that allows people to join ‘the conversation’. The Social Media Diary project made me extremely nostalgic about how far we have come with ‘social media’. I’ve been alive long enough to see the extreme advancements we have made, and how the term has changed over the past few years. It also makes me extremely excited to see what the future has in store for social media.

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