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Sorry, Mom & Dad. Your Kids Are On Social Media

I have one or two kids in every class I teach. Teenagers who have no Social Media accounts. No Facebook. No Instagram. No Twitter, Kik, SnapChat or any other platform that teen are using today. I make a point of saying to these kids “you are my favourite person”, mainly because I know that there is a lot of peer pressure to have Social Media accounts, but also because these kids will not have an ugly Social Media Footprint gained through years of having had unfettered access to a place that is basically a house party, when the parents aren’t home.

I teach kids how to use Social Media properly and effectively...
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Social Media is not just a campaign tool.

It’s municipal election time, in British Columbia. If you are on Social Media, you are starting to see invitations to Like or Follow a political candidate, as political candidates have all jumped on the “Social Media as a Campaign Tool” band wagon. There is no doubt that Social Media is a great tool for reaching out and getting your message to the masses, but, as one candidate has recently discovered, there is life (in your Social Media accounts) after the campaign.

What Was Old is New Again

It is not unusual to see parody accounts pop up, during a political campaign, spoofing a candidate and pretending to be them in the Social Media conversation...

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When Brands Fail At Social

You’re in the Customer Service office of a major brand. Next to you is an elaborate phone system that allows you to send, receive and manage hundreds, even thousands of call a day. That phone rings, you answer it, right? I mean, isn’t that the point of the phone? Sure, you may be putting out calls all day, but, surely when that phone rings, you answer it.

Think of Social Media as that phone. If somebody calls you (ie. Tweets, Messages, etc.) you need to make sure that someone, anyone, is there to answer it. Otherwise, you defeat the purpose of SOCIAL Media.

Sadly, this is still a very common fail with brands, both big and small...

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What is “Social Media Success”?

I recently had a debate with one of my peers in the world of Social Media, whom I respect a great deal, about what is considered a “success” when using Social Media in business.

He runs a very successful Social Media agency in the US, as well as running a very successful online application that aids users in content curation within their Social Media environments (an application that I use, myself). In his world, it is all about managing his clients Social Media presence. Strategy, content marketing, etc., is their bread and butter and they do it very well. They work with their clients for as long as the client is willing to pay for the services.

I, on the other hand, am a Social Media coach...

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When Personal Posts Get You Fired

This recent news article really bothered me.

Three Toronto Firefighters Fired over Tweets

OK. I get that the tweets were juvenile, sexist and knuckle-dragging Neanderthal like. I expect that if any of these guys were married, they would be getting an earful from their wives. But, here is the question I pose to you; if you did not know these guys personally and you were to run into them on the street, would you know who they were?

This is my point. You wouldn’t. You wouldn’t say “hey! Those are the guys that represent the Toronto Fire Department! They’re sexist!” You wouldn’t turn them away, if your house was on fire, because they posted comments on their personal Twitter account, that offended you...

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Clean Up Your Online Life.

Since being on CKNW’s The Simi Sara Show, this past week, I have been flooded with examples of how kids and young adults continue to post material, on their Social Media accounts, that can jeopardize their employment. This one was shared by a The Bob Rivers Show on 95.7 KJR , as yet another example of young employees making BAD choices when it comes to posting picture to the internet, that they think is fun.

More and more employers are paying attention to what is happening on Social Media, right from the time they are interviewing an employee and throughout the time the employee is with them. Regardless of how many examples are presented, however, people (not always just teens and young adults) still cannot seem to connect the dots...

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Teens, Young Adults and Social Media

This week I was a guest on CKNW’s The Simi Sara Show, talking about Social Media and the effects it has on the employable futures of teens and young adults. The conversation covered a lot of varying aspects, but the gist of it was this: kids have no filters and it is up to the parents to guide them through Social Media as much as they guide theme through everything else a the grow up. Not an easy task, given that teens and young adults are notorious for not listening to their parents advice and will continue to do things that most of us parents would consider reckless.

After the show, I returned to the campsite, where my family and I were enjoying the great weather by the ocean...

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You Get to Cry Wolf Once

We all know the story of the boy who cried wolf too many times. He did it for attention and when the real wolf showed up, no one would listen.

Social Media has it’s own version of the story now, only you substitute “boy” with “brand” and “wolf” with “hacker”. There seems to be a move by attention starved brand marketers to cry “We’ve been hacked” when, in fact, it is they that are the hackers.

Following the Hack Pack

Earlier this year, Burger Kings Twitter account was hacked and branded up to look like McDonalds. While the company tried to figure out a way to deal with the issue and find out how it happened, they started to gain more followers (over 30,000 before the account was suspended)...

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Politicians Can Learn from Mayor Nenshi

When Naheed Nenshi ran for Mayor of Calgary, many never thought he had a chance. Not well known beyond his academic work and civic politics editorials, no “real” political experience and a failed bid to win a seat on the Calgary City Council in the 2007 election. When he did run for the seat, however, he put a huge effort into running a campaign that leveraged the reach of Facebook and Twitter, as a means of engaging the voters. The key word here is “engaging”. Unlike his opponents, or most politicians, his streams were not filled with push messages, but rather genuine Q & A, as he reached out to the people of the City to truly grasp what their concerns were and share his solutions.

His conversations were genuine, his humour and intel...

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