The Most Skilled Consumers: Women

I have a personal and professional interest in the humanitarian aid sector. Therefore, the demographics of my target audience are others like myself. That’s right, educated females with moderately high to high income levels. Marital status is not relevant nor is their ethnicity or religious views. Their psychographics include tech-savvy and high-achieving consumers who embrace trends in any way, shape and form, especially with regards to social media. When I first pictured this niche, I figured they were few and scarce; but I was wrong. According to a study done by BlogHer, 53% of the 79 million adult women in the U.S participate in social media on a weekly basis! Check out this blog at http://smallbiztrends.com/2009/05/42-million-women-use-social-media-blogs.html. Wow, that’s a huge market!

Furthermore, these women are leaders because they’ve embraced the social media trend and participate in social media activities such as social networks, which ranks highest in popularity. Secondly, they participate in blog activity, thirdly; message boards and forums and finally they also use status updating. Their topics of interest include (in this order): politics and news, technology/gadgets, cars, business/career/personal finance, green, health/wellness, pregnancy/baby, arts and crafts, home and garden, food, travel, parenting, sports, social activism, and recipes/cooking.

In Mitch Joel’s book, Six Pixels of Separation, he mentions that online social networks would be much more powerful if they focused on specific niches of interest (Joel, 73). It appears that he’s right, according to this study. Millions of skilled consumer women are devoting their time and energy to an array of niches. Who would of thought?

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Story Telling and Communication Styles

As the “Business Writing for the Web” article pointed out (http://www.inspiredm.com/2010/08/29/persuasive-writing/), the number one goal to set before writing an article is to know what you want your reader to do after they’ve read your article. The second goal recommended to set is to know your audience.

While reading the lecture material, I realized that it also makes sense to ask specific questions along the way, rather then just expect readers to make comments. Although the first time I wrote a blog was less then a month ago, I’ve discovered quickly how crucial it is to find others who are interested in what you have to say. Ideally the interests of both parties need to be similar and a strong desire to discuss these interests must be present. Since the desire to discuss these interests is mutual, an opportunity has merged for both parities to educate each other and thus a relationship has begun.

The lecture material also mentioned that the overall tone of content posted in online communities tends to be familiar, friendly and casual. So then I thought, how does this relate to telling a story? Is the content important or is it the way that the content is being told?  Perhaps it’s both and when combined together a story is birthed. Ideally the best way to say something is to just come out and say it! However, it may have no effect on whoever is listening if no emotion is put into saying it.

That being said, the most important thing I learned in this lesson is to discover the emotion, or tone when writing an online article. I also learned the importance of asking specific questions.

Fact vs. Opinion

What’s good for us, being fed the truth through mass media or the masses of opinions from all over the place or a hybrid of both?

The history of mankind entails both a conniving and supremacy thriving race that will go to any means possible to conceal the truth. Traditional media is by far the most effective way to control what “truth” is exploited and what truth is concealed.

Of course new media allows for stupid and lazy individuals to connect with each other and collectively agree on some sort of intriguing opinion as Mitch Joel kindly puts it. The truth of the matter is that new media will ultimately exploit the real truth and all that it endeavors.

In my opinion we never were in a world of fact, but rather a controlled atmosphere were only people with power and money had influence on newsworthy material. Sure there’s going to be some weirdo’s online that want to include their two cents whenever they can, but I’m sure the most impressive news will come from individuals who portray their “opinion” with some hefty research to back it up. If not, their negligence will surely be brought to light by the many online professionals searching to discredit unprofessional attempts.

For the first time in human history, everyone will have the opportunity to speak the truth. People will be able to decide for themselves what they believe is fact and opinion. They won’t have the influence of politicians or power hungry corporations breathing down their backs dictating fact material from the fiction.

So now we’re asked what is good for us? Is it the truth through mass media or is it the masses of “opinions” from all over the place? Like Mitch Joel said, maybe opinion is the new truth and the definition of the words “media”, “journalism”, “credible source” and more do need to be changed.

As far as I’m concerned, the paradigm shift was well overdue and finally the world will be informed with real facts for the very first time.

Here is the original story: http://wwwtwistimage.com/blog/archives/the-truth-the-whole-truth-and-nothing-but-the-truth/

Tools and Sources

As a social media student, my interests relate to the emerging new era that Josh Bernof so delicately describes as the groundswell. Based on these three trends – people’s desire to connect, new interactive technologies and online economies (Bernof, 11), I whole-heartedly admit that I am an emerging social media strategist. I love to debate and discuss controversial topics, I enjoy learning how to use new technology to interact with people and I most certainly engage in online communities.

There are two social media listening/monitoring tools I use, one on a regular basis and the other not so much. I recently joined www.ChristianBlog.com; an online community for hardcore Christians to blog about whatever biblical doctrine they feel needs to be discussed. The best thing about this site is that it has given me positive reinforcement regarding not only my writing ability, but also my ability to research, learn from other like-minded individuals and prove my theories regarding biblical doctrine. The other listening/monitoring tool I use on a less frequent basis is www.YouTube.com. I use this site to find recent music that hasn’t yet been downloaded onto other websites, such as www.grooveshark.com.

As I mentioned earlier, I am a student and therefore my interests relay to my studies: social media. This morning I found a social media blog that seemed rather intriguing, www.socialmediaexplorer.com. I also have an interest in wine so I stumbled across this wine blog as well: www.vinography.com.

I want to focus my personal and professional development on the ability to write and strategize how I present content, mainly because I feel I have a voice and recognition of this voice requires strategy. Each and every one of the listed websites above serves a specific and unique purpose in my life. The Christian Blog site has strengthened my inner-self in more ways then I thought was possible. I’ve always been that person who see’s they’re own beauty inside, but for some reason can’t expose it to anyone. This changed when I found this site, others like myself have gathered together share their views, opinions and thoughts. For the first time in my life I felt like I truly had something of significant value. It was something that no one else had, something that made me different and I liked it! As anyone who has taken any sort of psychology class would know, positive reinforcement is crucial to social development. This Christian Blog site is crucial to my social development, because it is strengthening my inner-self by exploiting my passions and desires to express my religious views. In no means do I think I’m a saint, I’m 22 years old and have 3-year-old daughter as matter of fact! By strengthening my strengths even more, I am becoming more mature and knowledgeable on subjects that I find very intriguing. Not to change the subject, but YouTube has also been very beneficial in this sense as well. Did you know that music is healing? Of course you did, it’s 2011 and everyone knows everything! But what I bet you didn’t know is that music and rhythm is four to eight times more effective then tranquilizers (www.polybonk.com)! So now that I’ve shown you two imperative social media listening tools that I use to strengthen my inner-self for no other reason then to become a better person, it’s now time to discuss my professional development. For a while now I’ve known that professional development is an area that requires nurturing of specific talents and natural abilities, but I just didn’t know what specific area I should focus on. Actually, I still don’t to be quite honest, but what I do know is that it relates to the social media field of advertising. The Social Media Explorer site will educate me in my area of professional interest and keep me updated on trendy digital communication methods while the Vinography blogging site will give me a good understanding of a secular online community and a n industry-specific one at that. I actually have a creative idea regarding Wines, Wineries and Wine Tastings and this blog will hopefully further my knowledge of the subject and how others are engaging on the blogosphere.

What I did on My Vacation

The last time I went on a vocation was when I was 14 years old, and was an unforgettable one at that. Like any trip to the east coast, the wind was delightfully chilly and I couldn’t get enough. The scenery was beautiful and my mind was at peace; I was in total serenity at the sandy shores of Prince Edward Island.

The events of the week never ceased and the economy was blooming with coastal activities. On one sunny afternoon we went mackerel fishing several miles out to sea, with a tourist fishing instructor guiding us every step of the way. The fish seemed to jump in the air as we baited them, unaware of their soon to be demise. When we returned to the dock, some other fisherman were busy with their long awaited catch of the day, a hefty Tuna fish that pulled their boat 90 miles down the coastline. It was indeed an impressive catch, which quickly convinced me to never go swimming any deeper then my waist!

On another lovely evening with perfect weather, my family went to a cozy restaurant that reached over top of the ocean’s shore. As we ate black pepper steak and sipped on Pepsi, I remember the cool breeze blowing in our hair as we watched the tide sink further and further back into sea. After dinner, we had fun running along the soaking wet sands as crabs and other sea life scurried away into the closest crevasses.

On one of the last days we were there, we travelled into Charlottetown and had a taste of the shopping centers. They were just like the ones in Ontario; busy and crowded but with an added hint of salt in the air. We went to the movie theatres and watched King Arthur, which had just come out earlier that week. Over all, the entertainment life was enjoyable and worth spending one day doing while visiting as tourists.

Finally it was time to go, and as we drove past the red fields of potatoes, I reminisced about the peaceful place we had to leave. Surely one day I’ll return, perhaps with someone different, or perhaps with the same old people I first visited with. Either way, the trip was an experience I never want to forget.

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