Consumer Interaction

Organic consumers everywhere are calling, and signing, for the National Products Association, who supposedly is to maintain the integrity of natural products, to withdraw its support of approval products that contain GMOs (genetically modified organisms).

In an online campaign using its website, Tweets, and several articles, the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) has begun an all out attack and “national alert” against the National Products Association claiming that the association who “advertises itself as working on behalf of consumers who want to purchase products that they believe are safe and authentically natural” (Paul, 2012) is indeed allowing products that contain genetically modified ingredients to pass its certification requirements and bare the label promoting itself as “natural”. In a statement on behalf of the 90% of citizens in the United States who want GMOs to bare labels stating such (Cummins, 2012), Ronnie Cummins, Executive Director of the OCA, is calling the act of NPA labeling products containing GMOs as “natural” an “outright act of consumer fraud” (Paul, 2012).

How are consumers responding? Within an hour of the organization tweeting this article, 5 people have retweeted the article; within an hour the Youtube video has had 12 views; on Facebook, 154 people have liked and 24 people are following on Twitter the online petition to First Lady Michelle Obama to ask President Obama to support the citizens’ desire for labeled foods. The petition has gained 145,582 signatures as of the writing of this response.

Social Media has made the life of this petition and call for truth about what is in the foods Americans eat one that will simply not be forgotten or go away. As health issues continue to rise and people become more knowledgeable and responsive to the future of our generations, social media is the catalyst for which the voice and concerns of citizens everywhere will be heard. How successful has this campaign/issue been to date?

It appears that all 145,582 signatures for the petition article_26293.cfm were collected within a day. At this rate, there should be no problem with the issue catching national attention, online and offline, especially with over 145k likes on Facebook alone.

References:

Cummins, Ronnie. (2012). Organic Consumer Association Petition. Retrieved from: http://organicconsumers.org/michelle-obama-letter.htm

Paul, Katherine. (2012). Organic Consumers Calls on Natural Products Association to Stop Pulling Their “Natural” Seal on Products that Contain GMOs. Retrieved from: http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_26293.cfm

Twitterers to Follow

Welcome to the world of Twitter, the mobile and updated instant message system. Because Twitter operates in the “now” rather than the “later” of the day and life, I have chosen to follow three micro-bloggers relating to sustainability. Those three bloggers are @UrbanFarmToday, @OrganicConsumers, and @LVHelpGro. I choose these sites because of their relevance with sustainable farming and local food harvest and supply. Urban Farm Today is a site promoting urban farming, which is farming in the city. Organic Consumers is a site dedicated to educating Americans about the substance of the food they eat and the chemicals attached to and injected into the food’s DNA, and LVHelpGro is concerned with a variety of information regarding the health of the food we eat along with local farming techniques, food, and other issues related to clean, safe foods. Be sure to check them out if you are care that “you are what you eat”.

Be sure to follow me @kapretaj

The Value of a LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is becoming the professional version of Facebook. In my opinion, LinkedIn is a connecting source; connecting potential employees with employers, friends with friends, experts with those seeking advice, etc. To date, I do not have any cons for using LinkedIn however, I have not used LinkedIn to search for a job; I have only used it to add people to my network to stay in contact with people who are influential in their field of study or place of employment. The pros of LinkedIn are that you can connect with other people at another company or field of expertise who are in the network of your friends or contacts thus LinkedIn is a great networking source.

I created my LinkedIn account from the opinion of a previous supervisor who said it was a good SM platform to join, over 3 years ago. I try to check this account maybe once a week but sometimes less. The good thing about it is that I receive an email update to my personal email notifying me if someone has asked to join my network. I then usually visit the site and make updates. I have also used the site to keep track of friends and former coworkers’ places of employment. This is a benefit because I am able to stay connected with former coworkers without necessarily having a Facebook page.

For any user, especially someone using LinkedIn as a segway into a new career, it is good to have referrals from previous employers, coworkers, etc. As employers move away from traditional recruitment strategies to online searches and applications, having that “reference” visible can be a benefit.

For the future, my plans are to increase my connections through LinkedIn, receive referrals from current and former coworkers, classmates, etc. as well as join more LinkedIn groups as I currently belong to these following LinkedIn groups: Friends of Coit d’Ivoire, The White House, Habitat for Humanity AmeriCorps, Trinity Habitat Young Professionals, UTA School of Architecture, Compassion International, SHRM UTA, AFP-FW Metro Chapter, Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM), and Texas Young Professionals.

As of now, I do not belong to any other networking sites so I can’t recommend any but feel me to request to join my LinkedIn network.

Sustainability Wiki

Welcome to Davis Wiki. This site is a community-based site highlighting everything from the neighbors lost dog to the new major in sustainable agriculture and food systems available at the University of California Davis campus.

For a community that prides itself on having the “coolest school” in the nation because of its accomplishments in sustainability, this wiki in intended to connect the community in an effort to “explore, discuss and compile anything and everything about Davis”.

Although the wiki encourages anyone to edit the page, one must make an effort to locate the sustainable activities occurring. Clicking on regular events takes you to an extensive daily calendar, including times, locations, purpose of events, etc. where you see the agriculture sustainability as well as the promotion of healthy lifestyles events. For example, each day at 7:00pm, there is a potluck with a description of “awesome people and delicious vegetarian food” or the bike clubs many events.

The wiki also lists different groups and companies that encourage sustainability within Davis, California but is this wiki successful? When you click on the “people” tab, a list by last name of participants or residents appears. This list has to be in excess of 150 people. To say that 150 people in any community is contributing to a wiki for that community is, I would say, phenomenal and goes to show that people want to be involved in the happenings of their community. It also goes to show that sustainable farming and sustainability as a whole is growing by leaps and bounds as people everywhere realize that a change has to be made in our farming and production methods if we are going to stand a chance at surviving.

In all, this wiki is on the right track to be even more successful. Collaboration with other groups/communities of like mind would help grow this wiki along with updates about sustainability issues.

Check out this picture from the front page of the wiki:

Wiki address/reference: http://daviswiki.org/Front_Page

Online/Offline Media

There are different ways that companies can choose to get the word about what an upcoming event, attraction, sale, etc. In SeaWorld Antonio’s social media campaign for Journey to Atlantis, SeaWorld used a combination of tactics or avenues to generate interest in this new roller coaster. The company’s offline marketing efforts included: television commercials, word of mouth, brochures about the park and new attraction, maps of the park, television stories, newspaper/print news stories and ads, radio commercials, billboards, Pepsi can advertisements, as well as the promise of VIP treatment and recognition at the park and on the ride; all to engage users about the park and the new ride.

Online activities that engaged users were videos, photos, and blogs on social media platforms such as Youtube, Flickr, and Veoh. From these sources, the company could inform “coaster enthusiasts” as termed from the case study, about Journey to Atlantis, allow enthusiasts to see the building of the coaster, generate interest within and outside of the coaster enthusiast community as well as allow enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts to review, blog about, as well as share comments about Journey to Atlantis. Enthusiasts could also share those same pictures and videos with other thereby increasing the number of people impacted.

But, how did each technique fair compared to the next? Is online marketing more effective than offline marketing? In my opinion, the case study does not go too much into detail about how well each individual marketing technique worked but instead, clumped them all together to show the success of online versus offline. The study did however mention that television commercials were second only to internet. All in all, the online marketing outperformed offline in both PR and budget. According to the study, for every $1 spent for television, $0.22 was spent for social media.

Of all the great things that SeaWorld San Antonio did to market Journey to Atlantis, I would have to say that taking the website down after the ride opened was a mistake. Coaster Enthusiasts and non-enthusiasts everyone had become acquainted with the site. Removing sort of sent a message of “thanks but we don’t need your services anymore”. Keeping the website up would have allowed “newbies” to also feel a part of the creation and building of the Atlantis and feel more connected to not only the ride but the park itself; after all SeaWorld would want to keep those same people as well as others engaged for continued support.

This study proved that SeaWorld Antonio’s use of social media was very effective in that it not only encouraged and boost participation and park attendance for the ride but it costs 88% less than offline/traditional marketing.

I was not able to view the other 2 case studies so I don’t know what specific element was in all three but I would assume consumer engagement as that what seems to make social media a success. Thoughts?

Multi-Generation con’t.

An example of using SM for a campaign geared towards different generations would be one used to promote healthy eating and healthy lifestyles. We all know, or have some general concept of, how important it is for us to be and eat healthy. To run a successful campaign that would reach both the Boomers and Gen Y, I would imagine that there would be several SM platforms used. For the Boomers, the campaign would involve ads displayed on email sites, an email campaign promoting health that is sent out by friends, blogs and websites about the effects and benefits of health. I would even propose a campaign that encourages the younger generation to send emails, Facebook tags, pictures on Flickr,etc that the Boomers would receive promoting health.

For the Gen Yers, the campaign would include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube, and Blogs promoting health and healthy eating.

Youtube, Facebook, and Google/Bing advertisements and Blogs would be good for both generations since Boomers are more apt to research information online, use email, use Google and view videos (if located in the correct place) and Gen Yers would “check out” the “subject” tweeted or posted on Facebook.

Most of all, the use of both generations in video would help each identify with the campaign the need for healthy eating and health.

Multi-Generation

It never fully dawned on me just how other generations viewed social media; I knew some were skeptical with using SM while others seemed to breathe it but there is a vast difference that exists between how a Boomer views SM than a Gen Y.

In a conversation with a Boomer, and I being a Gen Y, it was discovered that this Boomer had the following thoughts about social media: 1) Social Media can be very effective; 2) There is a danger side to using Social Media but, if used correctly, it (as stated above) can be effective; and 3) because Social Media is so widely used, it is almost a necessity to use Social Media.

In keeping with the views of this Boomer, Hammill’s (Mixing and Managing Four Generations of Employees, 2005) identification of the generation types is correct in that this Boomer would prefer in-person meetings where I, a Gen Y, slightly prefer less in-person meetings and more emails or social media platform updates.

However, Social Media views for this Boomer and I are similar in that we both think that SM can be effective, is widely used, and that there is a certain risk associated with using Social Media. But, we both use Social Media for making travel arrangements (I the more so); researching ideas/topics, etc. This Boomer however is more familiar with Skype than I and I use email more frequently and am on more SM platforms than she.

But According to Jones (Generations Online in 2009, 2009), in 2007-2008 the percent of Younger Boomers in my interviewee’s age group online had grown 7% from 73% to 80% whereas the percent of Gen Y in my age group stayed the same at 85%. So that lets me know that although the Boomers may prefer face-to-face communication and they don’t trust Social Media completely, they are using the platforms that they do trust, such as online banking, Google, Bing maps, and email a lot more.

Given this difference in use of Social Media, it will be helpful to understand and know that you may not necessarily find many Boomers on sites such as Twitter, you may find them on Shutterfly and Facebook (Pacific Leisure Marketing, 2010).

In a very controversial article by Catherine Sloan, Sloan makes the claim that social media managers need to be under the age of 25. In a follow-up article by Kelly Clay (Should All Social Media Managers be Under 25, 2012), Clay makes mention of a former media exec who agrees that SM managers over the age of 30 has a hard time connecting to their constituents under 30. In the end, it is concluded that those in SM need to be know their constituents and be able to cater to their needs, thus, no matter the age of the SM manager, their ability to connect to the Veterans and the Gen Y audience will depend on the success of the company for the Veterans may purchase the product but for sustainability, you will need to attract the younger generations.

References:

Clay, Kelly. (2012). Should All Social Media Managers Be Under 25? Retrieved from: http://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyclay/2012/07/23/should-all-social-media-managers-be-under-25/

Hammill, Greg. (2005). Mixing and Managing Four Generations of Employees. Retrieved from: http://www.fdu.edu/newspubs/magazine/05ws/generations.htm

Jones, Sydney. (2009). Generations Online in 2009. Retrieved from: http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1093/generations-online

Pacific Leisure Marketing (Author Unknown). (2010). Baby Boomers and Seniors Are Flocking to Facebook. Retrieved from http://www.pacificleisure.com/tag/baby-boomers-and-social-media

Impact of Video

For the 2008 Election, actors made a video encouraging people to get out and vote Get Out and Vote – 2008 Celebrity Vote Drive. This campaign encouraged people of many ages, backgrounds, and ethnic groups to vote; realizing that Yes, their one vote does count!

The use of this video was used to promote voting. Imagine how effective this strategy would have been 50 years ago if people had to rely solely on the radio or t.v.

Social Media and video, I believe, reaches far more people, no matter what the cause is.

Video Statement: Social Media – An Ever-Changing Tool.

Social Media is an ever-changing tool.

I believe that this statement is true for several reasons. 1) The creation of  social media’s onset in the 1900s has grown exceptionally; who knew 20 years ago that online news updates would be more popular than the morning printed edition? 2) Social Media is the common-place thing. Companies and individuals use social media for various uses including driving directions, best practices for any situation, recipes, educational tutoring, purchases, money management, etc. The convenience of everything being just a click or tweet or blog away makes information all the more accessible and inexpensive (to a degree).

Learning from the best at the touch of a bottom; just a click or tweet away.Links in support of this statement:

Social Media Revolution 2012

History of Social Media

Erik Qualman – The Future of Social Media

Social Media being an ever-changing tool may be subject to change if ever there was a bigger, greater force that limited our ability to access the internet. Because every platform is supported by the internet (or cloud), what happens if the satellites are destroyed or this way of communication is drastically hindered? Then would something bigger and greater be established? I don’t know.

This article written about Liz Strauss quotes her saying how social media is ever-changing and the more it changes, the new generation has to adapt and learn the benefits of this “great” change. Liz Strauss: The Future of Social Media

Check out this article, the cartoon at the beginning definitely illustrates the point. The Future of Social Media Relevance – Mobile, Niche, Meaning?

And this article speaks about consumers using social media. The Future of Social Media and Business

Hello!

Greetings, this is my blog. I hope you find valuable information on here and if you ever have any questions, please feel free to send me a comment.