See Ya College…Hello Career!

A few weeks ago, it became even more real to me that I will be graduating in May of 2013.  If you are like me, that still seems pretty far away. However, it is only 7 months from now…

As frightening as that sounds to me, I can now say that I am more excited than anything else. The reason I say this is because I have a lot to look forward to in the next year. I will be making the classic transition from college life to career life, and I could not be more psyched about it!

I received an email on Monday, Oct. 1, from my boss at one of my internships this past summer. He was sending me an email in order to thank me for the work I did all summer, and also wanted to offer me a career there after I graduate! I was filled with mixed emotions–sighing with relief that I had at least one job offer, excitement that it could be the career I want, but also confused as to whether I should commit to it just yet.

I really liked working for them over the summer, but it is going to take some time for me to decide if it is the right place for me to begin my public relations career. However, I do think it will be a very comfortable start that will allow me to expand their social media base and get their name out to the community more.

If I were to take this position, I would be the Director of Marketing and Recruitment at Duchesne High School in St. Charles, Mo. This would consist of recruiting more students to attend the school through various public relations tactics, as well as working with the students to promote the school within. I would also create all the marketing and public relations tools and designs, communicate with all the parents of the students, and assist in the organization of fundraising and special events.

I think it is safe to say I have a lot to look forward to, but I also need to begin brainstorming ideas for how to improve the school’s communication and public relations efforts. They are very good at updating Facebook, yet I think more could be done with the Twitter account. I could also make more video and audio podcasts in order to give faculty, students (future and present), and parents something to watch and see the school’s personality better.

I am wondering if any of you have other ideas I could bring to the table? Feel free to comment and share your thoughts. I am really looking forward to this possible future career. Whatever thoughts you have I will take into consideration for my new public relations campaign for Duchesne. Thank you!

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Instagram: Photo Sharing Instantly

Knowing that photos can now be taken on mobile devices, people have recognized the need for apps to accommodate to this ability. Many photos that are taken by people on their mobile devices deserve to be shared with others. Therefore, apps have been made in order to share your mobile photos with others.

Instagram, the most popular photo sharing app, is a fun and easy way to share your life with others through the pictures you post. It is quick and easy by simply taking the photo, choosing from numerous different filters, and then choosing which networks you want to share it with including your Instagram app homepage.

I have an iPhone, so when I share photos using Instagram I can post them to the following networks: Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, email, Flickr, or foursquare. You also have the option to write a caption about the photo that will appear along with it once it gets posted.

This app was created in order to make mobile photos look more than mediocre by using filters. It also tries making photo sharing more convenient by having all networks available in the same upload. The uploads are very fast and efficient as well, so your photos will usually be uploaded in a matter of seconds.

Instagram is a free app that is available at the Apple app store and the Google Play store. I suggest you check it out and make your photo sharing experience more enjoyable, fun, and convenient!

The Post-Exam Examination

Looking back on Monday night’s exam, I am able to let out a sigh of relief. I had very high expectations for the midterm exam due to the amount of information we have learned throughout the semester so far. I was not sure what to expect either, considering this was going to be the class’ first exam of the semester in COM 509.

As with every first exam in a class, I am never sure what to expect regarding the level of difficulty. However, I was very pleased with the hints we were given before we took the exam. The hints were given in class as well as on the Facebook group that we all use to interact. I really liked the fact that we were given hints about some of the questions on the test, because it gave me an idea of what to focus on while studying.

While taking the exam, I noticed that the multiple choice questions were very clearly asked and not confusing. This relieved me, because I am used to taking exams that are worded in a very confusing way. This usually hinders my ability to successfully answer the questions, and I do not score as high as I wish I would. Once I moved onto the short answer questions, I noticed that I knew one of the answers word-for-word because it was another hint given on the Facebook page.

I thought the short answers and essay were fairly simple to complete, yet they took a while for me to answer. There was so much writing involved and I was hoping to be able to get all my thoughts on paper. All in all, I think I did well on the first exam in this class. I studied as best as I could, and I am confident that I will see that success in my results next period.

5 Ways for Businesses to Use Facebook to Their Advantage

Many businesses are on Facebook and use it regularly, but do they all know how to use it to their advantage? Obviously, Facebook allows its users to share, promote, and connect with others. However, not all of its users are aware of how to successfully do that. If you follow these five ways, your business is sure to use Facebook and its assets to its full advantage.

1. Create statuses that are insightful and highly likely to generate likes and comments that pertain somehow to your business. For example, Bud Light’s Facebook page does a great job at posting creative photos that include their product. This enables its consumers that like their page to see their brand’s personality. Check out this photo of Bud Light bottles made into the World Series trophy.

2. Make Facebook offers such as discounts on new products or services that your business provides. This will enable consumers that like your page to redeem a discount. In turn, they are more likely to visit your business or go online and contribute to your success.

3. Connect blog posts to your Facebook statuses so that you can generate consumers to your business blog. This also allows them to learn more about your brand’s personality. Check out this blog post status from the St. Charles Convention Center.

4. Like other business’ pages that will generate similar consumers to your business. This will allow you to gain a larger consumer base, and may even steal loyal consumers from other businesses. Doing this will also keep good relations with your business and the ones in the same area as you.

5. Post videos or podcasts on your Facebook page that will enable consumers to learn more about your business.

Video Movement Gone Viral: KONY 2012

Video is such an effective form of media. I think it is often underestimated how much impact a video can have on the audience that views it. This is especially true when the video pertains to something such as a movement. I have seen non-profit  organizations benefit tremendously from making a video to raise awareness of their purpose and objectives.

A perfect example of this would be the recent KONY 2012 movement that was started and organized by the non-profit organization Invisible Children in 2004. This organization worked to make a 30 minute video in order to educate and spread the word about Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army in East and Central Africa. They have been abducting, killing, and displacing civilians ever since 1987, so Invisible Children decided to take a stand and get the world on board to battle against Kony and his army.

Take a look at the 30 minute video:

This video went viral fast and now has over 93,000,000 views. Most people are now aware of what is happening in Africa and are willing to contribute in any way they can. If you take a look at the Invisible Children’s website, invisiblechildren.com/kony, it looks as though there is another video promoting the movement that is scheduled to occur in Washington, D.C. on November 17, 2012.

All these videos that are posted about the KONY 2012 movement tend to be very inspiring and motivating. As an organization, I think it is very crucial to know your target audience and figure out what you want to convey to them through the videos you make. Invisible Children has done an excellent job at educating and motivating everyone to recognize the need for a change. They have shown the world that Kony and his army should be stopped, and they have successfully done it using video.

A Weekend Without an iPhone…Wait, What?

I am relaxing on Friday night watching a movie, and next thing I know I have a text message. I go to pick my iPhone up from the table in order to see who it is. Phone in one hand, drink in the other…and it ended badly. My iPhone bobbled out of my hand, and fell straight in the cup of water.

I immediately began to panic. I pulled the phone out of the cup as fast as I could, only to see that it still could function. However, I soon found out that the battery was permanently dead. This situation opened my eyes to a world that I used to live in a few years ago, before the age of the iPhone. This world I speak of consisted of social media only being used while sitting in front of a computer.

I now could see how much more convenient the social media world has been made by the mere fact that there is an app for everything for smart phones. Smart phone users can access just about whatever they want, especially the main sites such as Facebook with a simple app download. Notifications show up on your smart phone whenever there is something new going on with your apps.

These attributes allow life to be so much more easier, because you have everything you have ever wanted communication-wise all in one mobile device. I have to fully admit, I was completely lost last weekend. For three whole days, I did not have my iPhone. I was so used to checking Facebook, Twitter, google, and other apps on my iPhone that I forgot what it was like to not have that opportunity. For this reason, I now have learned how affective social media is used with mobile devices and how it is becoming more prevalent as time marches forward.

Well, Here Goes Nothing…

About a week ago, I sat in a classroom listening to a man talk about telling stories and how easy it can be to put your thoughts into words. I did not know what to expect once he walked into the room. I examined his attire, and after looking at him from head to toe at first glance I noticed he had his nails painted. At this moment, I knew we were in for a real treat.

I thought, this could go one of two ways. He could be completely crazy with his thoughts and make no sense to me, or he could be the type of person that is just strange enough that everything they say seems to make perfect sense. Turns out it was the latter of the two predictions, and I found myself to be very interested in what he had to say about blogging and the ease of it all.

This man, Ron Davis, was quite the character. Once he opened his mouth, stories began to flow and I cannot tell you how many times the discussion got off topic. He mentioned his reasoning for blogging and it made me think about how convenient technology has made everyone’s lives, even the disabled. I thought it was very cool how he uses typing on the computer more often now ever since he had his stroke.

Technology seems to open up the door to many things. Ron made sure to focus on how blogging allows people to share stories whenever they want, to whoever they want. This means that blogs can be about whatever the person feels like writing about. The thing I found to be the most interesting from Ron’s talk was the fact that he gets one idea in his head and runs with it to create a blog post.

For instance, he asked me random questions about my Sperry shoes once he noticed them during class. This gave him some information on something he was inquisitive about and he took it from there. He gave ideas all throughout his talk about how he would make a blog post out of any random thought.

I thoroughly enjoyed Ron’s class discussion. It made me less intimidated to blog this semester. I am really looking forward to what I can come up with when creating blog posts and learning along the way.