Category Archives: Uncategorized

You Can’t Make Someone Like You. You Can Only Stalk Them & Hope For The Best.

Standard

Do you have those friends that post 80 pictures/day of their current main squeeze and posts about how great/special/wonderful etc. they are? What about that friend who posts every little detail about their relationship drama on their social media pages for the world to see? Just recently my good friend went through a break-up and did what any heartbroken woman would do and blast her ex (and all of his short comings) on her social media pages.  Come to think of it, my ex STILL makes jabs related to me on his Twitter, and we’ve been broken up for months – proof below!

 

 

 
And then of course there is the tricky game of relationship statuses. Are you Facebook official? Have you had a fight with someone about whether or not you really want to tell the world you’re dating? And don’t even get me started about Facebook creeping – yes I will admit I am a culprit! Social media makes getting a date (and breaking up with them) as simple as the click of a mouse.  With all of these new emerging media platforms, the way we date and view dating have drastically changed.

Shape and Men’s Fitness focused their annual sex survey on technology for the first time and found some interesting results.  According to the survey, 80 percent of women say they’re having sex sooner because it’s easier to stay connected through texting and social media, while 58 percent of men said that flirting through social media and text helps them get women into the sack quicker.  Before technology, daters would only get to know each other face-to-face or over the phone.  Now, daters can chat throughout the day about everything from what color socks they’re wearing to what they had for lunch.  Not to mention the countless hours looking through pictures, posts, Tweets and Google searches that they are able to do.  The worst part about dating is the long process of spending time with someone to find out if you’re compatible with them.  Now with Facebook, you can immediately find out what you have in common without even having a conversation with them (“See Friendship” feature).

Online dating sites have also drastically eased the dating process on every end.  According to an infographic provided by Mashable, 40 million people in the United States utilize online dating sites.  In the US, the average user age is 48 with an average visit per site time of 22 minutes and 27 seconds.  There are tons of websites for online daters to choose from as well: PlentyofFish.com, Match.com, eHaromny.com and even the personal ads on Craigslist.com.  These datings sites have  changed the way people look for each other, since we live in a customizable society where we can get anything in the size, color or shape of our choice.  Dating sites allow users to find a person based on their criteria, see their picture and gain a lot more information about them before even having a conversation.  These sites open up a new way of meeting people to those who might not have the time or the opportunity elsewhere.  Distance, a busy schedule and lack of access to potential partners are no longer barriers to dating.  Below is the infographic from Mashable.com so you can see some other surprise statistics about online dating!

 

Although emerging technology has changed dating, there is a downside – jealousy.  As more and more people spend time on social media monitoring their current or ex lover’s activity, feelings of jealousy increase.  Discovery Health looked at why Facebook and social media cause these feelings and came down to 5 reasons:

1. Facebook is Addicting

Amy Muise, a human sexuality researcher and PhD candidate at the University of Guelph in Canada, found that the time spent on Facebook is a significant predictor of the experience of jealousy.

2.  It’s Too Easy to Reconnect with Ex’s

Muise found that over 80 percent of Facebook users add previous romantic or sexual partners.  Before Facebook, if people wanted to communicate with their ex’s, their current partners didn’t have to know about it.  I know recently I’ve gotten an ex-boyfriend who has come came out of the blue to try to secretly exchange messages with me behind his current girlfriend’s back.

3.  It Over-Informs

With all of the information on social networks, people can find out more information about their partner than they ever wanted to know.  Facebook allows you to monitor your partner’s activities without them ever knowing it.  With all the information avaialble, we always assume the worst. A harmless post can be taken out of context and suspicions or hunches can grow into full-blown arguments based on a tagged photo.

4. It Appeals to Women

Muise found that women are not more jealous than men but they spend more time on Facebook – which means their relationship jealousy was more likely occur because of Facebook than men.

5. It’s Probably You

If you’re already a jealous person, Facebook will make it worse.  It’s clear that Facebook doesn’t make these situations easy but it won’t make you a jealous person.

Here’s a great video about Facebook manners and relationships!

 

Let’s Temporarily Avoid Each Other’s Facebook Updates So We’ll Have Something To Talk About

Standard

There’s no denying it, Facebook is a great way to stay in contact with old friends and learning pretty much anything you want to know about any of your Facebook friends at anytime.  But how far can we take these social networking sites?  In undergrad, I would spend countless hours on Facebook rather than doing homework or sleeping.  It was way more fun to stalk my crush’s Facebook than to study for a Geology test (yup, I took that as my science elective).  But there are some people who take Facebook crazy to the next level…

1. Like My Sad/Attention Seeking Facebook Posts or Else…

Recently, a 36-year-old man plead not guilty to battery charges after assaulting his wife for failing to “Like” a status update he posted on Facebook.  The man apparently posted an update to his Facebook page about his mother’s death and his wife of 15 years, who he recently separated from, did not respond to it.  Under the influence of alcohol he punched her in the face and pulled her hair – another example of what drunk Facebooking can do to you!

2. You May Now Update Your Facebook Statuses

Before kissing his bride, Dana Hanna took his cellphone out during the wedding and updated his relationship status on Twitter and Facebook.  He also handed one over to his wife to do the same.  Hanna tweeted “Standing at the altar with @TracyPage where just a second ago, she became my wife! Gotta go, time to kiss my bride.”  That’s not even the strangest part! In emailed comments to The Daily Mail, Hanna stated that when they got engaged, they changed their relationship statuses and didn’t call anyone to spread the word.  There’s a time and a place for jokes, but during my actual wedding ceremony should NOT be one of them!

3.  I’m Going to Commit a Crime and Post About It on Facebook

After rings and other valuable items were taken from a home in Pennsylvania, a friend of the victim’s roommate saw one of the items on Facebook.  The culprit posted a photo of a 3 karat ring with the message “Look what Robby gave me, I love him so much.” Apparently the man did not have enough money to buy a ring, so he ended up stealing one in order to make her happy! Have these two love birds ever watched an episode of Law & Order: SVU?? Benson & Stablier always catch the perp because they end up spilling the beans and telling someone what they did!

And don’t even get me started on ending relationships via Facebook! According to a SNAP Interactive survey of 1000 users – 70% male and 30% female – found that more relationships are ending through Facebook.  Here are some statistics:

  • 25 percent of respondents have found out their relationship was over by seeing it on Facebook first
  • 21 percent of respondents said they would break up with someone through Facebook by changing their status to single.

With roughly 129 million people (aka 41.37% of the total US population) using social media to stay in touch, I don’t see the crazy Facebook stories ending anytime soon!

This Toyota Venza commercial is completely appropriate for this post!

Your Reluctance to Put Me in a Google Plus Circle Makes Me Question Our Facebook Friendship

Standard

Google has again entered into the social networking game with it’s new Google + platform.  Just shy of three months old and already boasts more than 26 million users!  As of July 16, Google + is the 42nd most-visited social networking site in the U.S. and the 638th most-visited site on the web. And ladies, if you think all of the men are at sporting events, parks or coffee shops – think again! It’s raining men on Google + – with 72 percent of the users being men and 94 percent claim they’re looking for love!

Here are the top 4 things I love about Google +!

Hangouts 

Hangouts are group video chats that let users talk to their friends in real time.  Unlike Skype, which charges a fee for multiple users, up to 10 people can participate in one hangout at a time, totally free of cost.  What’s more, if you want to watch the latest funny cat video with nine of your closest friends, now you can, thanks to Google +’s integration with YouTube.  Users can choose the desired video on YouTube, click “Share” and then “Start a Google + Hangout.” Instant Party!

 

Circles

I love my family, but I’m sick of them stalking me on Facebook! Google + has a solution: a feature that allows users to organize contacts into separate groups or “circles” to pick and choose what those circles can view. Circles also lets users filter their stream, Google +’s version of Facebook’s News Feed. So when you’re tired of reading your aunt’s 14 million posts a day about her new online business, simply click over from your “family” stream to “friends” stream and problem solved!  Google + also has “Suggested Users” feature that enables adding famous people (or random strangers) to your circles.  Users can see updates from their favorite celebrities or bloggers – even if they’re technically not your real-life friends. So yes, I can take my Alexander Skarsgard-stalkerdom to an entirely new level!

No applications!!

Farmville and Mafia Wars might be fun, but if you don’t want to play them, the constant invites are annoying.  I get about 12,393,493 invites every day and I do not want to join! Yes, I was sure when I turned down your request four months ago, and I was sure when I turned it down three weeks ago, and I am still sure I don’t want to join them today!  Sure there are ways to hide the requests, but that extra step to get there is annoying.  Google + announced integrating web-based games with titles including Angry Birds, Bejewled Blitz, Zynga Poker & Sudoku.  But Google states that games in Google + don’t get in the way – they are there when you want them and gone when you don’t.

Mobile Integration

These days a phone is the perfect sharing accessory: it’s always with you, it’s always online and it’s how we stay close with our closest friends.  Google + didn’t just want another mobile experienced, so they focused on things to make your pocket computer even more personal.  With Google +, users can choose to add their location to every post.  Also, getting photos off your phone is a huge pain, and most of us don’t even bother.  Google + has an Instant Upload to help users share their photos.  While snapping pictures, Google + adds your photos to a private album in the cloud.  This way they are always available across your devices and ready to share as each user sees fit.

 

Here’s a fun infographic I found about Google +! I find it funny that Mark Zuckerberg is the top person on Google + with over 450,000 followers.

 

Did You Hear About Facebook Deals? Yeah, I Didn’t Think So..

Standard

In April, Facebook launched a Deal program that was designed to let the site’s 500 million users easily share their shopping experiences with one another, and save money in the process.  The deals would show up on a users’ news feed, in ads or on the left hand dashboard where users can buy the deal, share it or like it.  Sounds like a great idea right? Well it didn’t do so well…

After 4 months of testing Facebook decided to end the Deals program after debuting the program in Atlanta, Austin, Dallas, San Diego and San Francisco.  In an official statement from Facebook explained that they “think there’s a lot of power in a social approach to driving people in local businesses.”  Read between the lines and it seems that Facebook does not think traditional daily deals that users sign up via email to learn about are the best way for it to work with local businesses.  The move is certainly good news for daily deal companies such as Groupon and LivingSocial.

Although Facebook abandoned their online-based deals, they plan to carry on with the Check-In Deals component.  These Check-In-Deals allow users to check in from restaurants, supermarkets, bars, coffee shops, etc. using an app that will offer them rewards with discounts, coupons and free merchandise. Attempting to get users to share information on where they are, Facebook is pushing into the mobile offer space.  Although Groupon and LivingSocial have mobile apps, they rely heavily on email marketing to send out their deals. In comparison, Facebook is betting on mobile as the medium of the future for such deals.

Check-in Deals allow businesses to get exposure and create relationships with customers by offerings incentives for visiting their physical locations.  People rely on their friends for honest recommendations and more and more of these recommendations are taking place on Facebook.  The simple act of checking in at a business creates a recommendation that spreads across the News Feed! These new deals allows businesses a chance to join that conversation by offering incentives.  When people take advantage of deals, their activity appears on the News Feed for their friends to see and now their friends are exposed to that business.  For small businesses, this feature is great since it is a fast and easy way to create awareness.  Check-in Deals places the business in front of consumers and allows a business to begin dialogue to potential customers they could not have reached before!

So not only from a consumer standpoint but also as a small business enthusiast, I “like” the Check-in Deals! Are you checking in with Facebook? Have you seen or taken advantage of Check-in Deals? If not, here’s a little how-to!

Share

Would You Rather..

Standard

When you were a kid (or maybe even now), did you ever play the game, “Would you rather?” To play, a person would begin by asking a question that compared two different ideas.  After the question has been asked, everyone else would then have to answer with the option they preffered.   When I was a kid, we would always play this game with questions involving the most ridiculous ideas, like “would you rather eat a hamburger covered with bugs or a banana covered with roaches? (Of course, everyone knows that the wise person always went with pizza, not matter the options!)

Telenav, a mobile applications company, based on this very same concept.  They asked participants if they would give up their cell phones for various things and the responses were wild!Here are a few of the statistics:

  • 55% of people are more willing to give up caffeine for a week than their phone
  • 54% of people would be more willing to give up exercise for a week than their phone
  • 33% of people are more willing to give up sex for a week than their mobile phone
  • 22% would be more willing to give up their tooth brush for a week than their mobile phone.

Say what?!

Not only that, the survey found that 28 percent of iPhone users, 23 percent of Android users and 18 percent of Blackberry users would rather go a week without seeing their significant other than their phone.  At least only 10 percent of iPhone users, 18 percent of Android users and 15 percent of Blackberry users admit to ending a relationship via voice mail, text, email, Facebook or Twitter. Here’s the full info graphic:

While I understand how cool (also read as addictive) an iPhone or BlackBerry can be, I cannot understand how cell phones win out over the finer things in life. According to a Pew Research Center study, 83 percent of American adults own some kind of cell phone and that 42 percent of them own a smart phone.  That translates into 35 percent of all adults.  And here’s how they feel about their devices…

Share

Those Funny Looking Barcodes Have a Name?

Standard

QR codes are changing the way business and marketing efforts work.

I was walking through the Baton Rouge airport on my last visit home and noticed a poster for LSU featuring a block with white and black lines on it.  I had never seen this design before so of course I called my tech savvy mother to ask if she had any idea – which of course she did!  She explained they are similar to the barcodes used by retailers to track inventory and price products at the point of sale but the key different between the two is the amount of data they can hold or share.  When you scan or read a QR code with your iPhone, Android, or other camera-enabled Smartphone, you can link to digital content on the web; activate a number of phone functions including email, IM and SMS; and connect the mobile device to a web browser.

Since I work for a small business, I realized that the ability of QR codes to connect people with each other and to multimedia digital content is very useful!  Since there is so much information on the web, the creative usage of QR codes is endless – ranging from directing the viewer to a website, making a phone call, deliver an eCard and much more.  QR codes are a new concept and so many people will not recognize them when they see them or won’t have a smart phone with a QR reader installed, which limits their impact.  Most current advertisements that have QR codes still have to explain how they work and the steps the person has to take in order to access the additional information, therefore it’s important to determine if QR codes are a good fit for the audience.  In a recent study commissioned by ad agency MGH, 72 percent of Smartphone users indicated they would be likely to recall an ad with a QR code.  Top usage of those who said they’ve used a QR code was to secure a coupon, deal or discount.  Other uses of a QR code included: access additional information, enter a sweepstakes, sign up to receive more information and access video.  This data shows not only are consumers interested in interacting with advertising that bears a QR code, but QR codes can help an ad break through the clutter by increasing the change it will be remembered.

So what are some creative usages for QR codes? I found a few I thought were interesting…

QR codes on business cards – OK, not the most creative idea ever! Rather than overload a business card with all of your contact information, one could include the bare minimum for contacting, then create a QR code that leads people to the company’s Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, FourSquare or any other social media profile.

Labeling – For example, a restaurant patron is enjoying wine and notices a QR code on the bottle.  The consumer can scan this information which takes them to a mobile site where they can learn more about the wine and where they can purchase it.

Storefront displays – Few retail businesses are open 24/7 so by creating a “Shop Online” QR code and placing it in their storefront window, customers won’t be disappointed.

(This isn't the one I created!)

Tradeshow banners – I used this method to develop my company’s QR code.  I work for a healthcare consulting firm and we attend a lot of trade shows throughout the year.  I created our booth banners and included a QR code on each one, directing users to different pages on our website that corresponded with the information on the banner.  Since people are on the go and do not want to be bogged down with tons of information, QR codes work great and are of great convinience.  We will be debuting these banners at an upcoming trade show, so hopefully we will see good results!

QR codes, like all emerging technologies, is ultimately about making our lives richer and more efficient.  With a quick scan, these simple bar codes allow us to move from the physical world to the digital world while entertaining and informing users.  The simplicity of the code allows for printing on just about anything imaginable and they can direct people to anything on the web.  I expect QR codes to play a huge role in the future of print media, television and will include greater brand integration in advertising.  The best part about a QR code is its ability to make anything interactive! QR codes are easily customizable and track-able which allows marketers to see how many times their code was scanned, by whom,  and even by what device.

Share