Monday, November 19, 2012

Now That's What I Call Thanksgiving!

Unedited photo from Google Images
That's What Makes You Full - One Direction
Graveydigger - Dave Matthews Band
Super Baste - Nicki Minaj
99 Pilgrims - Jay-Z
The Longest Thyme - Billy Joel
Call Me Mayflower - Carly Rae Jepsen
We Will Plymouth Rock You - Queen
You Drive Me Maize - Britney Spears
Give and Let Die - Paul McCartney 
Corn - Natalie Imbruglia
The Carve - Mumford & Sons
Eat It - Michael Jackson
Sexy Pecan I? - Ray J
Parade Into Darkness - Avicii
Pumpkin' Pumpkin' - Destiny's Child
The Heart of the Platter - Don Henley
Mmmmmmmmmbop - Hanson
The Harvest is Yet to Come - Frank Sinatra
Thank - Aretha Franklin

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Newhouse for Nonprofits #NH4NP — Help #Sandy Relief

Social media should be used for good. Doing good, feeling good, being goodgoodness all around.
My #NewhouseSM4 group put that sentiment to work this past month when we researched how nonprofits organizationsspecifically United Way, Home HeadQuarters, and The American Red Crossuse social media. 
These organizations taught us that social media benefits NPOs because they enhance communication and volunteer efforts, fundraising capabilities, and disaster responses.  In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, our lesson became significantly more relevant. Specifically, the Red Cross, lead by social media director Wendy Harman (@wharman), makes great social media strides in relief efforts. I talked to Ms. Harman about three weeks ago, before Sandy was even predicted. But her intense knowledge and understanding of her role made it easy to see why the Red Cross has since had such a stellar response to the hurricane. With that in mind, simply teaching and preaching about "doing good" seemed a bit trivial to our group. We wanted to contribute. And so, we decided to donate five cents to the Red Cross each time our presentation's hash tag, #NH4NP, was tweeted. Our goal is to reach 2,000 tweets, coming to $100.

But we're not there yet. Below, see our team's Slideshare presentation, Pearltrees lesson board, and Storify recap. And then, consider doing some social media good: Tweet #NH4NP any time before midnight tonight and you'll be aiding Sandy relief. We appreciate it.

#NH4NP in null (acptachi)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Hannibal Lecter for President?

For a break from the past week's ruthless political analysis and speculation, shift gears with this game: Take an actor who's played a president, and re-imagine that presidency with the actor's more famous role. Ready?

Anthony Hopkins as John Quincy Adams

Hopkins gave an Academy Award-nominated performance in Steven Spielberg's Amistad (1997). Adams, the sixth President of the United States, achieved arguably most of his success in diplomatic endeavors, including the Treaty of Ghent and the Monroe Doctrine.

Party: The Carnivore Party
Campaign Slogan: "Put your vote in our basket."
Major platform(s): Pro-life—more to, err, love. Pro-farming.
Defining moment: Immediately after inauguration, Vice President Starling goes missing. No one reports on it.

Robin Williams as Theodore Roosevelt 

In Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Smithsonian (2009), Williams toyed with Ben Stiller's neurotic character while the two fought to save some of The American Museum of Natural History's most beloved exhibits. Roosevelt, a notable Progressive Movement leader and outdoorsman, held office from 1901-1909.


Party: The Very Green Party
Campaign Slogan: "We're Flexible!"
Major platform(s): 100% free market—the economy will bounce back on its own. Science education advocate. 
Defining Moment: Vice President Flubber, as chief engineer, completes the Panama Canal in record time.

Bill Murray as Franklin Delano Roosevelt 

This December, Murray will star as the other Roosevelt in a UK comedy-drama, Hyde Park on Hudson. The film revolves around the 32nd POTUS's affair with distant cousin, Margaret Suckley. FDR occupied the White House for an unprecedented 12 years, leading the country through the Great Depression and World War II.

Party: The Ghostbuster Party
Campaign Slogan: "Who You Gonna Call?"
Major platform(s): Increased military spending.
Defining moment: Government approves use of proton packs, slime blowers, and Stay Puft Marshmallow uniforms throughout WWII. Hitler is promptly captured & contained in an Ecto Containment Unit.

John Cusack as Richard Nixon

Next year's The Butler will chronicle three decades of American presidents through the eyes of the White House's help. Cusack will portray Nixon, the 37th POTUS, whose reputation deteriorated after the notorious Watergate scandal. He resigned in 1974.

Party: The First Amendment Party
Campaign Slogan: "Say anything!"
Major platform(s): Pro-gay marriage—we love marriage.
Defining moment: In a plot twist, President Dobler dramatically stands outside the United States Supreme Court Building and, in a plea to take him back, blasts the Watergate tapes from his boombox. American girls swoon.

Who are your favorite fictional presidents? 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Social Media as Told by Tom Haverford

If you don't watch NBC's "Parks and Recreation," you should. If that logic doesn't persuade you, at least check out Tom Haverfordthe show's young, want-to-be entrepreneurexplaining some of today's most popular social media. I promise you'll enjoy his outlook.



LinkedIn & Reddit




Thursday, October 25, 2012

What We Should Learn From @SyracuseU's Social Media Strategy

Photo from
Kate Brodock (@just_kate), the Executive Director of Digital and Social Media at Syracuse University (@SyracuseU) is good at her job. The school's near 17,000 Twitter followers and 100k Facebook fans attests to that. This Wednesday, Brodock explained to #NewhouseSM4 exactly how she handles creating and maintaining the university's social media presence.

Hint: That task isn't easy.

But Brodock and her well-trained social media team (of students!) have developed a system that seems to be working well. And though her strategy consists of several points and goals, three pieces of advice stuck out most to me:

1. Combine content creation with content curation. 

Brodock described a "sweet spot" for social media users that includes a "healthy dose of content creation and a healthy dose of content curation." This means finding a balance of original workfor example, a blog post or an infographic you've designedand aggregated information that fits your niche audience.

2. Ask yourself: Does this platform work for your content?  Sometimes the answer is no. This point interested me the most. It seems logical, especially when launching a business, to jump on every social media outlet. But sometimes that platform's purpose doesn't easily fit with yours. For example, Tumblr or Pinterestmediums that thrive on visual contentmay not effectively communicate text-heavy content. You have to instead strategize how to portray your content on these platforms. For instance, while you may write out a detailed analytic report on your brand's blog, an infographic or chart will better suit Tumblr or Pinterest.

3. "Fun!" is an acceptable reason to use social media.  Of the social media experts #NewhouseSM4 has heard from, Brodock was the first to tell us to have fun. SU's Pinterest, for example, was designed for this purpose. And it's a fantastic, well-organized page of pins specifically collected for an Orange audience. Having fun should not be taken lightheartedlybeing entertaining or playful can help build, maintain, or strengthen relationships with your followers.

>> Read my full Storify of Brodock's visit, "How @SyracuseU Manages Social Media"

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Social Success in Social Business

This past Wednesday, Michael Brito (@Britopian) took time to Skype with my social media class about his job at Edelman Digital (@EdelmanDigital) and social media's role in business. It's tempting sometimes, in a class devoted entirely to social media, to tune new information out. Because how new can it be, really? How much is there to say about social media?

But Brito was refreshing. As a man clearly passionate about social business, he offered insight and perspective into what it means for a business to be social media savvy. And his advice can be applied to individuals too. Here are the three most important lessons I took away from the 30 minute discussion:

1. Growing a fan base (or audience) is important, but connecting with them is more important. 

Obviously gaining followers or Facebook fans is critical. It means that people are aware of you. But a large quantity of supporters, buyers, readers, etc. will not get you far unless you are engaging with them. Businesses and individuals create trust this way.

2. Understand the tools you have and how they can help you.

Merely being on every social media platform isn't enough. If you're not utilizing each tool to its full potential, you're essentially just creating dead space.

3.  Don't sacrifice creativity. 

Quality of content > quantity of content. Communicate in creative ways that will make people want to choose your brand or hire you over others.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

If It's Easier Said Than Done, Is It Worth Saying?

There's a scene in "Miss Congeniality" when Sandra Bullock, as an undercover FBI agent in a Miss America pageant, is asked, "What’s the most important thing our society needs?" She answers honestly. 

This is lighthearted but begs the question: Does the term “world peace” carry any weight? The words alone have lofty demands. And lofty demands scream "unrealistic." 

When the Dalai Lama visited Cuse this Monday for a Common Ground for Peace discussion, I wasn't sure what the whole goal was.I thought, isn't it a given that we all want world peaceespecially if we're attending a world peace panel? We're not igniting change by sitting in a room and talking.

In the session I attended, "Shifting the Global Consciousness," esteemed speakers, including Martin Luther King III, relayed how to create global peace. The discussion was inspiring. Still, I couldn't shake my cynical outlook: World peace seems great, but it’s easier said than done.

Then as if reading my mind, the Dalai Lama called world peace "a fashion.”

"We say it," he said, "but with no heart behind the word." 

I came away from the panel with an understanding that His Holiness tackles world peace with practical and simple instructions. He sets small, pragmatic goals. And I can follow them. 

1. Make one person's day better. 

His Holiness emphasized changes on the individual level. An effort to lift someone's spirits can be as easy as a text or Facebook post. Aiming for one person's happiness isn't less important than aiming for a country's happiness. 

2. Forgiveness isn’t a sign of weakness. 

Accepting an apology doesn't mean "giving in" or "losing.”

3. Use technology to understand the world. 

We’re capable of communicating with people across the globe in only seconds—take advantage. News is now instantaneous—pay attention. 

Is achieving world peace easier said than done? Of course. Is it still worth talking about? Absolutely.