Here comes summer… FINALLY

It’s been a long year, but I made it. School is thankfully done, and I can relax a bit for the summer.

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Reflecting back, this school year has been tough but great. I’ve learned a lot about my program and myself, made some great friends, and am proud of the work I’ve done.  To finish off the year, I’ve decided to write a final blog post for my first year. So, here we go.

Although I did a lot this year I’d like to focus on talking about my experience learning about and trying out blogging. I will, however, be posting more of the work I did this year in the portfolio section of my blog. So, go check that out if your interested, I’m pretty proud of it. Anyway, back to blogging.

Blogging was something our teacher wanted us to really understand and try out. They taught us that blogging is a really good way to express our interest along with our professional work and make connections online. From learning this and actually blogging myself, I’ve found blogging is kinda therapeutic, allowing you to speak your mind.

Even though I feel this way about blogging I’ve still neglected it quite a bit, only really using it when I had an assignment linked to it. I’d like to start using my blog more, however, I haven’t really found my muse yet. Other than the assigned blog posts I get in class I don’t really know what to talk about.

So, here’s to hoping I find my muse this summer and can share more with you guys as I continue my time here in Kingston and at SLC. If you guys have any suggestions as to things I could blog about I’d love to hear them. Oh, and don’t forget, have a great summer.😊

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Persuasion in the online world

For my Consumer Behaviour class, we were asked to listen to Sam Harris and Zeynep Tufekci’s podcast on persuasion and control of the consumer to prepare for an in-class debate.

I attempted to prepare by listening to the podcast while cleaning, but that didn’t work out. While I cleaned the podcast went through one ear and out the other, leaving me with little knowledge for class.

Honestly, even though I was lost going into that class the debate helped me out so much. The key thing I took from the debate was about just how often our information and data is being processed. I always knew that this happened, but I never knew to what extent.

Our information is looked at to the point where they know us better then we know pexels-photo-433617ourselves. They’ve learned our online patterns and can tell what mood or period of life we’re in at the moment based on the online trail we leave. By being able to understand us so thoroughly, marketers use specific tactics to target and persuade us to buy or believe what’s being said. It’s a scary notion that someone unknown to me has that much power over my decisions without notice. But it’s also such an ingenious way of persuasion, to know the consumer on such an inner-personal level is a huge advantage. It’s a smart idea that won’t be going away anytime soon.

The podcast and debate left me with a lot to think about. It’s influenced me in my studies by showing me something I find really intriguing with connections to my past interests in psychology. I’d love to learn more about it and possibly do work like it in the future.

If you’d like to listen to the podcast, I’ll have it linked below. Even though I was lost for a bit it’s a worthwhile listen, especially if discussed after. If you have any thoughts on it, please feel free to share.

Podcast: https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/persuasion-and-control

What’s this about a female advantage?

Have you heard of Sally Helgesen? Neither had I till recently.

Sally Helgesen is an author, speaker, and consultant in the business world. But more importantly, she is an interesting and intelligent badass. I decided to use her book, The Female Advantage as an inspirational starting point for a class project on leaders in our field of business.pexels-photo

However, I didn’t choose Ms. Helgesen right away. First, I had to do some research on her and learned that she is an intelligent woman on a mission to help women recognize and act on their greatest strengths. By following her mission, she becomes such an impact on those she touches. It must be a different feeling to be able to touch people in such a profound way.

Probably the key thing that drew me to Sally is how far reaching this said impact is. She has worked with various universities and associations around the world, even consulting with the UN on projects overseas. Just with this little information about her work, it just shows me how interesting she is and just what makes her a badass to me. Just this little bit of info has me on the edge of my seat, waiting to learn more about her. My first stop to look is in her book, where I’ll find out what it was like in her field before the internet.

I highly recommend everyone check Sally Helgesen out. You can find her on Twitter and on her blog. I’d love to hear what you think of her and her work.

 

Do you have any recommendations for other impactful people I should keep an eye on? Tell me down below.

Instagram brings a new edge to online marketing

What would you say if I told you that there’s an easier way to find those products you like on Instagram? If you’re like me, your probably over the moon, since I always find cute stuff on Instagram with no link to where its from. Well, get ready for Instagram’s “collection” ads.

It all started with Facebook, who fyi owns Instagram, testing these “collection” ads and are now moving onto Instagram trials. These ads are a new form of shopping-enabled ads that blend video and product catalogs. Basically, if someone see’s something they like in the video they can tap on said ad and open a broader catalog with up to 50 different products. Then if they tap on a specific product, it sends them to the businesses website to make the purchase, but still stay in the Instagram app.

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“Collection” ads in action

So far, the “collection” ads have been effective. They easily target both old and new customers in a new interactive way. As told by Facebook’s chief operating officer “About two-thirds of the visits to Instagram business profiles are from people who don’t yet follow them. This is how many businesses are finding new customers.” This big draw in of new people may be due to the ads specific design, which makes it have fast performance on mobile, a very important detail in today’s modern world. However, it doesn’t just have bonuses for the consumers, it also focuses on helping the advertisers.

For advertisers, it offers new ways to measure their results. Advertisers are most commonly told when someone clicks on one of their ads. With the new “collection” ads advertisers are given the measurements of outbounds clicks, specifically when someone clicks out of the ad to the business’ website.

Although it is a new program, progress is already being made with brands already using such ads. To start it off, fashion and beauty brands like Birchbox and Revolve are the first marketers to try “collection” ads on Instagram, helping start the new ad program out.

Even though it’s just the beginning for this campaign, I hope it goes well because it’ll make my life easier for online shopping, be that for better or worse. But what’s your opinion? How do you think Instagram’s new “collection” ads will impact online marketing? Do you think they’ll stay around or just be another fad?

References

Sloane, G. (2018, February 6). INSTAGRAM GIVES BRANDS NEW WAY TO SELL IN ‘COLLECTION’ ADS. Retrieved from Ad Age: http://adage.com/article/digital/instagram-brands-sell-collection-ads/312273/

Ha, A. (2017, March 23). Facebook introduces a new ad format — product-focused ‘collection’. Retrieved from Tech Crunch : https://techcrunch.com/2017/03/23/facebook-collections-2/

Entering the blogsphere

As an advertising and marketing student blogs are an essential thing to understand, which is why we had to make a blog. Even though we started them last semester I never really used mine, I actually kinda forgot about it. But since second semester started we’ve gotten a lot more assignments related to using our blogs.

So now that my blog is actually up and running, welcome. pexels-photo-265667

To really start our blogs, Frank’s class has been showing us how to better our blogs, specifically by reviewing them. From this class, I found that making a great blog relies not only on the look of the blog, but on the blog posts content. To make the content better, there are a few key features that help, but I find that even if you just have 3 of these features in a blog post, it’ll boost the quality of them.

A good title

A compelling title is one of the most important things a blog post can have. This is the first thing that the reader see’s and makes them decided if they want to continue reading or not. To really make it good, its gotta be something that will grab the readers attention and make them want to continue reading your post. I’m not super great at this yet, I’m still working on my title skills but I’m hoping I get more creative with my titles as the semester goes on.

Making it personal

Another essential aspect of a blog post is making it personal. This can easily be done by adding a personal experience or personal image. By being more personal I find it makes readers feel more connected to you and understand you better, while also being able to relate to you. Plus, if you add personal images it gives readers a better glimpse into the life you live, rather than being just this obscure person running a blog.

End with a question

A good end to a blog post is something that engages with the reader, something that keeps them thinking about the post. This can easily be done by ending with a question. Not only does it keep the reader thinking, but it also allows them to engage with you through comments. It makes more of a connection with the reader as your asking them for their own opinion and input on what your saying.

There are a lot more things you can do to better your blog posts, but personally I believe these are some of the most important. But what do you think? Is there something more important that would make my blog, or any blog, better?

What came first, form or function?

Second semester recently started and in my first design class we were asked about American architect Louis Sullivan‘s phrase “form follows function”. Since I’d never heard this statement before I did some research and realized that I agree with it, but only in certain circumstances such as web design.

In web design it’s fun to make interactive and eye catching websites, however that’s not always possible if the website doesn’t function well. If the websites function is lost or ignored while creating the form of the website it can become a disaster. Instead, a website’s content should inform its design, not the other way around.

When form follows function it allows a web design to no only be functional but unique. By allowing the content to come before the design, ideas and inspiration can come from the websites core content to make the design flow more with the information. This makes the website easier to navigate and just an overall better experience for the reader.

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Take Lush for example. If you don’t know, Lush is a beauty company that focuses on being simple, ethical, and open in all aspects. When looking at their website, it’s obvious that they worked with form follows function, as the website has a simple design that is easy to navigate and open towards all questions on production and company policy. Their website very obviously displays its function and put Lush’s core values and concepts in the front of their minds to make the web design perfect for Lush.

All in all, the idea that form follows function is a debatable subject, but in the industry of web design it’s an important theory to follow to display your best work for a clients needs.

 

Mobile Video in Marketing Communications

Social media is filled with videos that can easily catch peoples eye, this applies especially to mobile videos. Since mobile videos can start just as you scroll by them, you are more likely to watch them and keep watching because of the automatic starting of new videos.

In a Forbes article, it is brought to attention that mobile videos gain views 6 times faster than desktop views as we are ushered into this new age of mobile living. The article only briefly talks about mobile videos, but connects it with marketing communications as something to watch for, as it will be a big way for companies to reach consumers in a faster and more efficient manner.

I’ve attached the following article and another by Google that expands on the subject in much more detail, even giving examples and ideas of how this integral part of everyday life can be used for better brand marketing.

Forbes Marketing Trends 2017

Googles Marketing with Mobile Video

 

 

Starting New

September came and went and with it so did the first month of college. Its been a freeing experience here, being able to control almost every aspect of my life, for better or worse. But either way its been pretty good so far, what with making new friends, experiencing new things in Kingston, and actually enjoying my program and the prospect it brings for my future. Hopefully it stays this way.

But for now, I’m just gonna try and do my best, especially with keeping up with my first blog!

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