When the news broke in my Direct and Interactive Marketing class that I would be one of the seven students representing St. Lawrence College at The Gathering Summit in Banf, Alberta I was excited about something for the first time in many months. All of the hard work had paid off and I could not help but feel proud of myself and my team for getting this opprotunity.
As I packed my suitcase months later, it still all felt surreal. The thought that I would be in the pressence of some of the most forwarding thinking brands gave me this imense sense of joy. Arriving at the summit was a whole other feeling. The feeling of belonging.
Getting to listen to all of these leaders of brands such as IBM, The North Face, Marvel, and Porche was both the most surreal and enlightening experience of my entire young life. With each speech I somehow always had pages of notes, encapslated with peals of wisdom and humour.
Having the experience of helping run a large scale event was a huge rush to the head everyday. Being in the atmosphere of so many groundbreaking individuals was intoxicating, like a drug that you would never want to come down from.
I plan to write more deatil on my experience over the summer when I have more time to write. The Gathering was my calling card and I am so happy I picked up.
In chaos, there lies great thought. Life is extraordinarily chaotic at times and it can be difficult to find the medium that settles it all. For me, the medium that settles the chaos is blogging.
I had the pleasure of being introduced to the art of blogging this semester in Frank Armstrongs MCOM5 class. An introduction I am happy to have made. Blogging has given me a space to express my thoughts and opinions. Blogging enables me to connect my passions like philosophy and my work in marketing together to show the complete picture of my own mind to the world.
This semester blogging has taught me connectivity. When writing posts I always try to connect the starting thoughts to the finishing ones to show the full evolution of a post. Since blogs are meant to be short, this strategy really has helped me collect my thoughts. I have also used this strategy to mutter through the chaos of my other school work and life decisions.
Blogging made me realize that I need an outlet to discuss my thoughts on topics. I’ve always loved writing, often gravitating to forms that relate to my perspective. Blogging gives me the opportunity to relate my personal anecdotes to professional topics.
I plan to continue my blog both inside the classroom and outside. Over the summer I plan to write about more philosophy, music, film and marketing trends. Thank-you for enduring the chaos that is my mind and giving me your attention to explain my insights.
Last week in my Consumer Behaviour class with Laura Kittner, we had an open discussion about Sam Harris’s podcast on Persuasion and Control. Through the podcast, I was struck with a thought about our online or rather digital personas. We care so much about what we post but we don’t think twice about what we “like” on social media… why is that?
In the podcast, Sam Harris and his guest Zeynep Tufekciabout data collection in regards to our digital footprint. Everything we scroll past, every post we stay on, every “like” we give all lends to our own digital persona. It seems we never consider that marketers are using that data to read and predict our vulnerability to purchase.
Marketers have access to this data and have been reported using it to market certain products to consumers. A case discussed in the podcast highlights a company in Australia sifting through data of adolescent females. They were looking for individuals that showed possible signs of low self-esteem through their online behaviours.
Is this ethical?
As individuals, we take so much time out of our lives crafting and caring about our online persona. We take hours crafting the perfect posts and ensuring that they “fit our aesthetic” and our “personal brand”, but we forget about our more personal behaviours on social media and how they impact our image. Though the average social media doesn’t have access or care to have access to knowing what the people around them are doing online, marketers do.
Where is the line drawn?
If we took the amount of time thinking about the posts we are “liking” and seek out our purchase behaviour would be incredibly different in theory.
Choosing Sheryl Sandberg as my thought leader was an easy decision for me. In my Perspectives of Leadership class with Kathy Patterson, we have been tasked to study a thought leader for the semester, then taking our learning and applying it to a workshop in class. When I knew Sheryl Sandberg and her book Lean In were options I immediately reserved it.
Although I am only about a third of the way into Lean In, I have already learned two valuable lessons from Sheryl Sandberg. The first lesson is to always “take a seat at the table” and the second being the “the ability to learn is the most important quality a leader can have”.
Take a seat at the table
Sheryl talks about how if you are a woman and you are in any way involved in a meeting you should take a seat at the table. This stands also as an analogy for individuals but specifically women in business. Taking a seat at the table applies to more than just a meeting, it applies to everything involving the success of an individual.
By asserting yourself, you are showing that you not only deserve but that you also demand respect. Sheryl talks about a certain situation where she was one of the only women attending a meeting. When the meeting took a bio-break the associate running the meeting could not tell Sheryl where the ladies bathroom was because there had been so few women attending meetings in their office. This is shocking.
Never stop learning
Sheryl talks about how leaders are always learning. By continuing to learn you are continuing to become a stronger leader. I apply this to all aspects of my life. To learn is to understand in my mind. By continuing to learn about yourself you are able to understand others from your internal, intellectual “clock”.
Sheryl Sandberg has an active online presence. On Twitter she shares her thoughts on leadership, shares other individuals views she admires, and converses with other leaders. She brands herself as not only a leader and a business professional but as a human being just trying to balance it all.
What I hope to still learn
I really hope I am able to learn tools on how to assert myself in business to earn my success. I also really hope to gain insight into the changing landscape of women in business. Her perspective is incredibly inspiring to me, she has such a factual based insight; everything is demonstrated by fact, which I love as an analytical person.
Have you ever been looking at an Instagram advertisement and wish you could be directed straight to the featured products? Well if you said yes I have some brilliant news for you. Instagram has introduced “collection” advertisements. These advertisements allow brands to give consumers direct purchasing to their products without leaving the Instagram application.
This technology was first tested with consumers on Facebook. Facebook owns Instagram, so it was only natural that Facebooks younger “sibling” Instagram take this step into the universe of “collection” advertisements.
Instagram is known to be mainly targeted at the Millenial demographic. That being said, Instagram is also quite known to propose many advertising opportunities for consumers. The new “collection advert format allows consumers to stay in the app while shopping. When a consumer clicks on an advert they can easily “swipe-up” on the advert to reveal a collection of 50 more items, usually featured in the ad.
This technology on Instagram is most popularly used currently by fashion and beauty brands. The two most notable brands using the “collection” ad format are Revolve and Birchbox. Both of these brands have used social media as their main form of advertising their brands and products so it was only natural that they both branch into the “collection” advert trend.
Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook said that: “About two-thirds of the visits to Instagram business profiles are from people who don’t yet follow them. This is how many businesses are finding new customers.”. This data provides the perfect rationale as to why “collection” adverts could be the way of the future for brands on both Instagram and Facebook.
Overall, I think that “collection” ads are a genius way to allow consumers to purchase their more niche products or rather indulgent ones with the click of a few buttons while staying in the Instagram app. In my opinion, this is an excellent step for brands that market mainly through social media platforms in that I think it will increase sales.
Tell me what your thoughts are in the comment section below!
Ever since I was a child I have absolutely loved my drives home. From kindergarten I’ve followed the same end of day routine of telling whoever is driving all about my day; often starting with the most exciting part of my day. It wasn’t until our blog lesson in Frank Armstrong’s class this semester that I came to the conclusion that I have been verbally blogging my whole life.
Though I am technically a new blogger, blogging has really felt like a natural fit for me both as a student and an individual. I feel like I now have a platform that I can air out all of my insights and hone my writing skills while making my transition into the professional business world.
As I am officially entering the ‘blogosphere’, I am delighted with the content theme of my blog. This blog serves me as a place to connect my personal and professional experiences with my desired career field of Advertising & Marketing Communications.
Since our lesson in Frank Armstrong’s class, I’ve been applying the structure and technique of blogging to all aspects of my writing. To be honest, I think my friends are enjoying our conversations more than usual because of my new knowledge on the art of blogging.
As a part-time dance instructor/choreographer, I often use the structure of blogging in my teaching. For example, I’ll start a class by telling students what our new content will be for the day (the most exciting part for most); then transition into learning the new content (the discussion section), and finishing with blending the new and old content together (the conclusion and lasting thought).
A key element in blogging effectively I have been finding to be that of a challenge is keeping things short. Blogs are not essays. We were taught in MCOM 5 that readers want to know the main idea of the blog post early so they can decide if it’s worth reading further. I am getting more comfortable with keeping my writing more direct and to the point through blogging which is a skill I am happy to be honing.
At the end of the day, I want my blog to evolve into a strong resource for people to look at and see my progression as I go from a student to a young professional. Blogging will allow me to reach this goal while fulfilling my need to have that nostalgic story-telling time I so long for again. This blog shall be my car ride home.
It seems that individuals today care immensely about how their lives look to others. With the boom of visual social media, people are sharing their lives through their own filtered lens. However, when “designing” our lives, where do we as individuals stop and take that filter off?
When considering the phrase “form follows function”, I am drawn to the opinion that form and function need to harmonize with one another to create the best outcome. This debate reigns similar to that of the whole “which came first: the chicken or the egg?” debacle. There is really no right answer here.
When considering the idea of form follows function, I immediately thought about the film Black Swan (2010). The main character in the film descends into madness while trying to embody both the white swan and the black swan. Soon discovering that she must be both in order to reach perfection.
The white swan in the ballet is innocent and perfect in every technical aspect but lacks emotional depth with her dancing. In contrast, the black swan may not be as technique driven but is rather intoxicating with her execution and intensity.
The white swan represents the function, the technique driven side. While the black swan represents the form; the visual and emotional intensity the ballet captures its audience with. When looking at this particular example it needs to be understood that both core qualities need to be present to create a humanized piece of art.
If there is no passion in the piece, is it really worth experiencing?
It seems that the goal of anything at the end of the day is to draw individuals in. In order to do so, one must let form and function support one another and intertwine to create the final result. They are one nucleus flowing together.