Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Facebook Saves Lives?

    So I know my posts are usually about PR accidents or slip ups that have negative effects, but I thought I'd try something new. I read a news story that represents a way social media sites are genuinely beneficial. Roxy Kurze posted a status on facebook asking for help to find a kidney donor for her husband, who was on the donor list, but was told it could take up to five years to receive a kidney. A facebook "friend" who she had only briefly met one time, and who had the same blood type responded and was willing to donate his kidney. Now both are healthy and happy.

    I thought this story was so great, I'm pretty sure everyone has at least a few facebook friends they hardly know, some people are totally against "friending" someone or accepting a friend request from someone they don't know. I know this is a one in a million kind of thing, but still stories like this are pretty incredible and crazy to think about. I always viewed facebook as more of a distraction or pass time but this proves how effective social media is in all types of situations. Professional and personal. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Virtual Goods

After reading Chapter 7 in Engage, one thing that really stuck out to me was the act of virtual gifting. I guess I'm a lot  more behind on this social media stuff than I thought. I mean I've heard of E-cards but the idea of sending someone a virtual coke or flowers is awesome. So awesome, to me anyway, that I decided to put it to the test by sending my mom these "virtual flowers" talked about in the chapter and...she loved it! However, my mom is not the technology or computer type, so there is the slight possibility that we both are way out of the loop, but if so at least I'm not the only one.

I think from a business and PR standpoint, this is great. Convenience is a key factor in today's society. What's more convenient than taking 10 minutes tops and a few clicks to make someones day with virtual flowers or gifts? For the many procrastinators such as myself, this is an extremely useful tool for those last minute gifts for a birthday. Not only is it helpful in that way, but it makes the consumer take the time to look through the company's products in order to choose the right one for their occasion.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Engage 3-6

In Part 2 of Brian Solis's Engage, Forever Students of Media, he touches on the fact that we should never try or even attempt to master something as fast changing and expanding as new media is today. The many forms and places in which social media exists like social networks, blog communities, microblogs, wikis, crowdsourced news, etc. All of these were formed and are here for the purpose of connecting people. The term social media means something different to everyone. Solis presents a few definitions such as the redistribution of influence and connections between friends, peers, and influencers. His definition of social media is any tool or service that uses the Internet to facilitate conversations. I can definitely agree with that. That is pretty much all I think of when I hear the words social media. He brings up an interesting point about conversations and says that they are not what build relationships, it is the act of earning trust, loyalty, and establishing significance. 
    He then goes on to explain in depth the different forms of social media mentioned before and how they are good and bad. For example, corporate blogs, a study shows that most who read them do not trust the information which is completely understandable. What company is going to make a completely neutral claim or idea about their own product or company? None. On the other hand the blog put together by Southwest Airlines I found to be a great tool in promoting the airline as a fun and exciting way to travel with links to pictures, videos, and links to employee blogs and videos. 

     I was unaware of social media types and all the things they have to offer before this. I have always thought of myself to be pretty up to date with technology such as this, but I never thought to look outside of Facebook or Twitter. This entire section was an eye opener as to everything Iout there and how it can be used to full advantage.