Behind Facebook’s Rose-Colored Glasses
Griffin Cottle is a former Examining Social Media Networks student now enrolled in Leveraging Social Media for Public Relations.
Social is supposed to be all about keeping it real. As he explains in an intro to his classmates, Griffin doesn’t think that’s always the case.
I think my least favorite social platform is Facebook, which I just deleted.
I think it’s because it’s both (1) all about ‘me’; and (2) it’s unrelentingly, unbelievably optimistic.
The stories that people share are all positive and incredible, and from knowing the people in real life I can say for sure, and not to be a total downer, that they bear no resemblance to reality.
Since the only use I could find for it was self promotion, I disconnected.
On Valentine’s Night, I experimented with a thematic Snapchat Story featuring short video clips from some of my favorite cheezy love songs.
The story will start disappearing soon, but I took screenshots of some of the highlights.
Whatever You Are, You’re Not a Publicist
Two-time former student Monique Mallory is a longtime PR vet who once self-identified as a publicist. As a native Southern Californian, three things pop in mind whenever I hear that word: red carpets, bleach-blondes & clipboards.
Thankfully, Monique is now in the position to ditch the old-school title after beefing up her digital/social skillset in the NYU-SCPS Digital Media Marketing Certificate program. That’s when Monique hired me to help revamp her digital fingerprint, beginning with the LinkedIn profile.
Behind Facebook, LinkedIn is the most widely used social networking site out there. LinkedIn represents all-things ‘social media & your career’ and some analysts predict it will become a mammoth business publisher that could erode the futures of Forbes, Fortune and Bloomberg Businessweek.
Monique is a role model for mid-career professionals who mask their fear of social media in sentiments like “social media is stupid” or “Facebook is going down soon.” That’s because Monique embraces digital/social as add-on skills that transform her traditional PR talent into something fresh, shiny & new again.
Eat your hearts out, Millennials, because Monique knows search engine optimization, search engine marketing, web analytics and she was a Google+ early adopter, a qualification that makes her highly desirable. “Google+ Expert” is one of 2014’s new hot job titles.
Don’t forget her traditional PR talent that never goes out of style, things like relationship building, media relations and a long list of placements at virtually every print & broadcast outlet that’s been around for the past two decades.
Add to this Monique’s community management know-how, a talent that she developed all on her own over the past few years by [voluntarily] participating in Google+ Fan Communities. Today, she co-manages more than a dozen Google+ pages & digital communities for her favorite TV shows & music genres, such as True Blood, Game of Thrones & I Love 80’s Music.
Over the next few days, we’ll be wrapping Monique’s revamped LinkedIn profile. Thanks to social media, we’re showing that she’s far more than a publicist. Monique’s an independent business owner & proven PR pro who manages digital communities with the same TLC that she uses with the news media.
Goldiblox CEO Debbie Sterling and the little girls who play with them (and parents who buy them) are so much more than innovators.
If you haven’t heard of Goldiblox, it’s the grand-prize winner of the Intuit Small Business Big Game that was featured in an all-expenses paid ad that aired during the third quarter of the Super Bowl.
Think of Goldiblox as a blend of Legos, Lincoln Logs & Tinkertoys for little girls. The Goldilox website explains it like this:
In a world where men largely outnumber women in science, technology, engineering and math…and girls lose interest in these subjects as early as age 8, GoldieBlox is determined to change the equation … By designing a construction toy from the female perspective, we aim to disrupt the pink aisle and inspire the future generation of female engineers.
As a communications person who is sensitive to [overused] business words & phrases, there’s only one thing about Goldiblox that gives me a slight pause: the tagline.
Toys for Future Innovators
Goldiblox is a young business, so I suspect that Team Goldie is still experimenting with its brand. When I first heard about the company a few months ago, the tagline was Toys for Future Engineers. This made perfect sense after watching a promo video in which three young girls turn a home into a magical Rube Goldberg machine. (Must Watch).
At the very end of the Super Bowl commercial, I noticed the change to Toys for Future Innovators.
If Team Goldie has anything to do with it, today’s little girls will have higher aspirations to be engineers when they grow up — and lots of other things — so I see why they replaced Engineers with Innovators. Future Innovators will capture a bigger chunk of the market share than Engineers alone.
But let’s set aside the toys, the future & little girls for a second. What, exactly, is an innovator?
According to an item in The Atlantic, "Innovation: The History of a Buzzword," “shouts of “Innovator!” used to be akin to charges of heresy.” Today, ask ten people what they define as innovative, and you’ll get ten very different responses.These are the same types of responses you’ll get if you ask, “What is unique?” or "What is a Thought Leader?"
Innovator, Innovate and Innovative are buzzwords that have all but lost their meaning in today’s business environment. They join the ranks of other overused buzzwords — like strategic, unique, out-of-the-box, effective and plenty more — that raise skepticism. When the media sees these words, the first thing that pops in mind is the product, service or company is anything but <fill in the buzzword>, even if it’s something that will change the world.
When it comes to business-speak, all-things innovative took a beating in 2013:
- The Wall Street Journal names it as one of the year’s most hated buzzwords
- It is one of the new entrants to the list of Top 10 Overused LinkedIn Profile Buzzwords
- A PRNewser item names it as the #1 buzzword that PR pros should avoid
I’m not poo-poo’ing Goldiblox by any stretch. Just the opposite, in fact. Ms. Sterling & Team Goldie deserve every bit of praise that comes their way, without the threat of buzzword buzzkill.
Last night, I watched Ms. Sterling’s TedTalk. She shared her personal story of being a little girl & then later a female college engineering student who doesn’t fit in. What she realized then & what she’s doing now with Goldiblox isn’t innovative, really.
Instead, Goldiblox reinforces a simple, powerful and necessary message. It’s a message that we need to hear, to understand, to embrace and to instill in our young people.
Toys for Smart Little Girls Who We Encourage To Build Anything They Dream Up In Their Heads.