My Dream Job

I am often asked what I want to do for my career. In today’s day in age, it isn’t uncommon that my peers will have 3 -4 different jobs in their lifetime. I absolutely love my job and the company I work for now. Will I stay here forever? I could. The company is ridiculously strong and secure. We have amazing benefits. My co-workers are pretty great. But what do I want to do?

Well, I love marketing and advertising. I do some outside activities to get in touch with the local marketing and advertising community. I’ve spent time with a lot of people who work in a ton of different environments, from corporate to ad agencies to education to being self-employed.

In high school and during my early years of college I wanted to be a social worker. I’m a very compassionate person and I wanted to help people. Shortly after taking a few classes and doing some research on what I’d do as a social worker, I decided against it. I fell into my current position and have been drawn into the business world.

I’ve spent time thinking, how can I can combine business and doing good for the world. In 2010 I did the St. Paul Police Department Citizen’s Police Academy (remember?!). This was an awesome experience. And I got tazed! It wasn’t as bad as it sounds but if I was acting out it would definitely calm me down. One of the things we did in the CPA was learn about every different department within the SPPD.

Any police department will have a media liaison and it’s usually a sergeant or maybe even the police chief. Bigger departments, like St. Paul, have a specific person that fills this role and they’re called the Public Information Officer (if they’re actually a police officer) or else the spokesperson for the department. St. Paul has a list of great PIO’s and I was able to have one as my professor at St. Kate’s in the summer of 2010 for an elective class I took called the Anatomy of Violence. Between learning about the PIO’s position in the CPA and talking with my professor about his role, I knew I had to find out more about it.

It is a very fast paced job. This person is the point of contact for all media. The media comes in daily and goes through the police reports and from that pick which cases to report on. From what I’ve heard, the media folk are usually chomping at the bit to get information about the various police reports that have been released.

I have to say, this would be my dream job! And don’t worry, I have a plan of action to reach this goal. Once I complete my degree in marketing and management, I’m going to figure out how to enroll in the skills academy. Once the skills academy is completed, I will test to be a cop and look for a job, hopefully within St. Paul Police Department. SPPD is really tough to get into but I’m hoping that completing the CPA and making connections between now and then will help me with this. Then, I’ll be a patrol cop for a few years. I’m talking the nitty gritty 7pm until 8am shift. I am a total night owl, so this would be amazing. I can spend my day sleeping and working out in the cop gym. I will spend my time learning the police department while still focusing on my desires as a marketing and public relations professional. Then, magically, this position will become available. I will interview and be the best for the job, given my experience with the department and my background in business and marketing/PR.

It is fun to dream, huh? 🙂

MIA

My blog posts have been lacking, and I apologize! To be honest, I’ve been quite busy. I originally started this blog for my Promotional Communications class. Once that ended, I made a decision to keep the blog. But I haven’t been keeping up! There have been some exciting things happening but I haven’t felt compelled by anything professionally to post.

I did take a break this term from school. Last semester was rocky with work and some personal stuff so I decided I needed a break. 8am class every Saturday for 3 months just was not appealing. I’m starting up classes again in April, I’ll have class Friday night and Sunday afternoon. I’m excited to get back into the swing of things. I’m bummed that I’m not taking any business classes but rather some required electives. But, that’s part of a “well-rounded” education, I suppose.

I am currently working on a blog post about leadership. My division at work has recently had a re-structure and I have a new supervisor. I had mixed emotions as I’ve had the same supervisor for almost four years! It’s been a few weeks now and I am actually ecstatic about these changes. They were  thought out and handled very well. With that said, I’ve been thinking a lot about leadership. I am truly inspired my the leadership team at the company I work for. I am excited to learn and that has me thinking about leadership.

I have this weekend planned to relax and hopefully reflect on leadership and will share as soon as I’ve completed.

Happy Friday.

Leah

End of Term Thoughts

As I close the semester and finish up my Promotional Communications class, I can reflect on what I’ve learned over the past term. I am no longer required to write a blog post about things going on anymore! I have Thursday nights back to myself and can now catch up on the whole season thus far of Grey’s Anatomy! Score one for Leah’s free time. But, I digress.

Anyway, one of the main take aways from the class is that if you can create a wave in the social media world, you can do anything. You can use social media for creating awareness for a cause, marketing your business and many other things. Online publications and media branding is a key essential to a successful business or brand.

Last night was the award ceremony for the Twin Cities Top Ten Titans In Social Media 2010. From this blog post, you can see why someone would be nominated.

“The people who make the list will have made an impact on society through using social media in the past year. People on the list may be independent, work for large companies, work in media, public relations, politics, the arts, or some other type of work. One thing that that will determine the winners is that they will be people who are finding new ways to use social media and pushing the limits of the platforms they are using.” Continue reading

What happens when things on the web go viral?

In my promotion communications class we’ve discussed when “things go viral” – meaning, take the internet and media by storm.

A few examples of things/people/posts that have taken off in the past couple of years:

1. Justin Bieber: He started off as a Canadian kid whose mother posted his videos on YouTube for out of town family members to see. Somehow he was discovered by Usher and is now the tween heart-throb for this generation.

This video is my personal favorite pre-famous Biebs.

As of today this video has 23 million hits. He also has over 6 million followers on Twitter.

2. In July of 2009, Jill & Kevin got married in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The entire wedding party danced down the aisle to Chris Brown’s “Forever”. The video took off and they were featured nationally. Here is their video:

While researching this post, I discovered that Jill & Kevin turned their viral wedding dance video into a way to raise money for a good cause, The Sheila Wellstone Institute. In 2009 Chris Brown (the artist of the song they’re dancing to) physically abused his girlfriend at the time, R&B Pop star Rihanna. As of 9/29/10, Jill & Kevin’s viral video has raised $34,900 in donations for the Sheila Wellstone Institute. Way to go, Jill & Kevin!

3. On November 2, 2010 Nerdy Apple Bottom wrote a post on her blog titled “My Son Is Gay”. Her 5-year-old son, “Boo”, wanted to dress up like Daphne, a popular female character from Scooby Doo. Other mothers at Boo’s school were clearly offended and stated that the mother never should have “allowed” her son to dress up as a female character.  The bottom line is bullying. It seems that lately teen and child suicide has been on the rise, specifically in regards to bullying. So this mom took to her blog to defend her son. She says in her post:  

“Just as it was heartbreaking to those parents that have lost their children recently due to bullying. IT IS NOT OK TO BULLY. Even if you wrap it up in a bow and call it ‘concern.’  Those women were trying to bully me. And my son. MY son.” {found here}

I tweeted Nerdy Apple Bottom this afternoon and she responded that as of today she’s had 3,086,673 views. That post has over 45,000 comments. It’s been just over a month since it’s been posted. From a basic Google search I can see that she was featured many places, including: a Forbes.com blog as an example of a “bad mommy blogger”; Good Morning America; In the U.K. on Mail Online;  The Today Show; The View and many others, including tons of other blogs. BlogHer author Melissa Ford interviewed her regarding how her post went viral and her reactions {here}. She states she had about a dozen readers, put the post together in 10 minutes and published.

I came across the post early in the morning on November 4th. I remember because we were coincidentally talking about viral media/marketing in class that night and I brought this post up. I saw it on WordPress’ main page that morning then it was tweeted and re-tweeted by many people I follow!

4. This video “I Hope This Gets To You” was created by Walter May to create something different to express his feelings for his girlfriend that had just moved away for graduate school. This was posted on 11/28/10 and has had 534,160 hits as of this moment.  Walter says:

“I secretly created a song and video with my friends the Daylights in hopes that it would be passed around and get to her organically. WITH YOUR HELP, we can meet this goal and it can stand as a symbol of what we can do as a digital social community.”

Check it out… (it is cute)

I saw this because of retweets on Twitter with the title “This is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen”. Naturally, I was intrigued. This guy knows what he’s doing – using the digital social media community to create a viral video.

So the question remains: how does something go viral?

In my opinion, based on what we’ve discussed in class, what I’ve learned in other classes and what I see in my own life, I think there are a few things that contribute to something “going viral”.

A basic Google search {I already explained that Google is my daily go-to for searches!} of “How does something go viral” brings up TONS of blogs and articles. Someone could spend a lot of time researching this topic. Our book, The New Rules of Marketing & PR by David Meerman Scott, is just one example of more research that has been in regards to social media and interactive marketing and PR.

I think that there are a few components to something going viral. I think it either needs have a platform or a controversy behind it. I doubt that my blog about Coke Zero & Diet Coke will go viral. But, based on the above examples I can conclude the following:

  • Justin Bieber went viral and is now the tween IT man because he fit the marketing niche. At the time, there really wasn’t a teeny bopper boy. Someone came across him and thought he’d fit the mold  – he’ll bring in the money. And I’m sure he has. There’s going to be a 3D Justin Bieber MOVIE coming out…
  • Jill & Kevin’s wedding entrance dance. Jill & Kevin posted it on their YouTube page and from there, well, we see where it went. I think it went viral because it is great! It is funny, creative and not something you see every day. It today’s world of bad news, it’s nice to see something funny and happy. I am happy that they’re from St. Paul. They have been parodied, too! You know you’ve made it big when someone is making fun of you.
  • Nerdy Apple Bottom’s post created some controversy, especially in the mommy blog world. Although, she does say 98% of the comments were positive, there were still people who criticized her for “putting her son out there”. She took a risk and she stood strong her beliefs. She’s a great parent and her children and family are lucky! She gave the interwebs something to talk about.
  • Walter’s video that he created for his girlfriend: I will be curious to see if he has created enough hype for it to get to her. And if so, I will be curious to see how she felt. I would be flatter and probably cry, but then again I’m kind of a sap for things like that. I’ll definitely be following him on Twitter for an update and will update this post when I find out. I think it will go viral, and it will get to her because, in less than a week it’s got half a million hits. It’s the law of the six degrees of seperation. Someone has to know her and email it to her or post it on her Facebook or Twitter.

In today’s world of instant news, constant updates and interconnected lives there are so many things that are posted on the internet that can become a hit – good or bad. The one thing I can conclude is that, with the exception of Walter’s video, the others did not INTEND for their posts to go viral. They simply were venting on a blog, posting music for out of town family or just being goofy.

What does this mean for the marketing world? Does this mean that if you want to spread the news about your product that you need to create something to cause a stir? Or do you do your normal thing and hope it takes the world by storm? Interesting questions that I will definitely keep pondering.

Interactive Media

The internet seems like the most prevalent place for interactive media – such as “click on me” ads or being able to literally interact with the ad being presented to you. 

On a daily basis, I will be bombarded by many different ads, presented to me in many different ways. On YouTube, I have to exit out of an ad to continue to watch the video. When I’m watching Grey’s Anatomy on-line, I have to watch 30 seconds of ads and these are quite interactive – the video I am watching becomes smaller and the ad takes over the screen. I can quite literally interact with the ad. I can select and click and before I know it, the 30 seconds is over and I’ve just spent two minutes doing exactly what “they” want me to do – which is spend time with their ad.

As far as what works me, if I am interested in something, then I am going to seek it out. If I am bombarded by an ad for shaving gel or men’s products (something I have no use for), then I am not going to go out of my way to spend time with their ad. I am persuaded by creativity – by something out of the box, something unique and different than what everyone else is offering.

The Role of Newspapers in Promotional Communications

The newspaper has historically been a way to get the daily news. With the invention of television and the internet, it’s obvious that the channels of communication, namely the newspaper, has declined.

Personally, I enjoy the newspaper. However, I have never once had a “subscription” to a local newspaper. I, along with most of my generation, get my news online. I log onto the Pioneer Press website daily to read the news. I get updates on Twitter from KSTP, WCCO, Kare11 and CNN. I do not have the need for print advertising such as the newspaper.

The New York Times is listed as the third largest newspaper in the United States, behind The Wall Street Journal and USA TodayThe New York Times circulates 951,063 copies daily.  Recently, an article on Mashable.com states that at a recent press conference, it was announces that the NYT will go out of “print” sometime soon.

“As newspaper circulation continues to fall, so do newspaper revenues. All told, losses amount to 27.2% or ad revenue lost year-over-year between 2008 and 2009. More and more consumers are using the web to stay updated about current events; in fact, in a poll earlier this year, only 21.7% of Mashable readers said they got their news from a newspaper.” (http://mashable.com/2010/09/08/nytimes-print/)

With that being said, I believe in the next 10 years we will see the newspaper being phased out and magazines, interactive media, online media, blogs and social networks taking the place of the traditional newspaper.

What do you think? Do you read the phyiscal newspaper? Where do you get your news from? 

 

 

Hello world!

Welcome!

I am a part-time student at Saint Catherine University, studying Marketing and Management. I work full-time in the corporate world and I love using what I learn in class and bringing back to work. I am able to integrate new technologies and techniques into my daily work. I am excited to keep a blog about marketing and advertising as I do spend alot of time on my own reading about it.

To get things started, I’ll post a little about how I spent my summer vacation from school. In addition to working, I was able to do many things. Here are the highlights!

*Bridesmaid for Miss Alyssa!

May 22, 2010

 

& a party it was!

*Graduated from the Saint Paul Police Department Citizen’s Police Academy!

 *Road trip to Chicago to see John Mayer!

Laura & I before the concert!

The Avett Brothers opening for JM

He might be my future husband. Maybe.

All in all, I had a great summer! Looking forward to getting back into the routine of classes, though.