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Online Environments Karen K. Lee May 3, 2013
Group 1: 2 Large Businesses Walmart and Subway
In the cases of Walmart and Subway, Walmart is a supercenter that offers different products such as paper towels, lunchmeat and eggs to movies, books, makeup, and even tires for cars. In their tweets they seemed to highlight their sales like they do in their weekly ads. Every tweet was about something that was on sale in their store with a cute slogan attached. For Example, one of the tweets was “Need a good shave? Gillette razors are here!.” This was cute but seemed a bit overwhelming since they did that with every product on sale every week, and I couldn’t imagine having to come up with a new slogan each week for a different product. What I thought was good was that they offered tips and had links to limited specials that some people couldn’t access if they didn’t have Twitter accounts. If I were running their social media I would definitely highlight their products but also their stores and other aspects as well, like their customer service, services they offer that people may not know about, etc. I think they did a good job at following the guidlines outlined in the unwritten rules of business social media. As far as Subway concerns, they took the same kind of approach but with a twist. The background of their Twitter page was the highlight of the month and they also seemed to talk/Tweet a lot about their products. What Subway did differently than Walmart was that they had a lot of links to athletes that represent their products on their Twitter page, and they also included links to fun new things on their website.
Group 2: 2 Small Businesses Up A Creek Tavern
I could only find one local business. I started out following Up A Creek Tavern in Howland, Ohio and followed them every week closely. The few Tweets they had were about weekly specials, and it was recently that I found out they must have deleted their Twitter account because I could not find them again after a few weeks and they had disappeared from Twitter. I started thinking afterward why they might have done this and I came up with many reasons. They might have deleted their account because they didn’t have someone to run the account, didn’t have time, didn’t use it often anyway, or didn’t like the concept of social media for their business. Regardless of what it may be, some companies do not agree with social media for their business not because they don’t agree but because they don’t understand how it benefits to their profit. If I were running their social media efforts I would have highlighted the location, specials, the atmosphere and other aspects that would keep people coming. I have frequented this restaurant and it has all of the above to consider featuring. I don’t think that the person running it had the experience to know what would be best for the business’ social media coverage.
Group 3: 2 Non-Profit organizations American Red Cross and American Diabetes Association
I also followed the American Red Cross and American Diabetes Association as my non-profit organizations. The American Red Cross tweeted about recent apps that they had created for users to be more connected with their association, facts about their services and what people could do to help. In the American Diabetes Association, they tweeted about personal diabetic stories, and information on them and how to find them. I thought that was something that the American Red Cross lacked because they didn’t include testimonies from real people that would have touched home with users. Both of these organizations social media accounts could use some work. I understand that they are non-profit organizations but in order to get the public interested they need to show ways to get the public involved and excited about their services and upcoming events.
Group 4: 2 Celebrities
I followed two celebrities and chose Bret Michaels and Justin Beiber. I chose these two on purpose because of the age difference and difference in music genres, which I thought would bring interesting tweets. I found that that they both posted about their personal lives and because Bret is a lot older I didn’t expect that. Bret seemed to post a lot about his family and things happening in his life. He used his Twitter account as a platform to inform his followers what was happening in his life, and I was happy to see that he was using the social media exactly what it was for-to be social. Justin’s posts were a little childish and didn’t seem to make a lot of sense, but he also posted about his life. He tweeted more about his personal accounts with people and things that happened to him rather than his family, friends, and doing things with them. I also found it interesting that Bret posted a lot about diabetes since he has the disease. It was refreshing to see a celebrity out there doing good for other people and so passionate about a cause. Together, the two of them had a great balance between posting about their personal lives and posting about their work and their aspirations. If I were to help these two with their posts, I would have to educate Justin on the do’s and dont’s of social media. It’s good that he interacts with his fanbase but not that he forgets that he is a professional. When you’re in the public eye as much as he is he has to look after his image and as much as it is tempting he can’t go back to being a kid.
Group 5: 2 Politicians
The last group that I followed was two politicians, one was current vice president Joe Biden and another was presidential candidate Al Gore. Joe Biden’s Twitter page was run by his campaign staff and also he himself, but he rarely tweeted his own tweet’s which I found a little impersonal and disappointing. I did like that they included a lot of information on the campaign and current conditions and that they had easy access to Barack Obama’s page and also Michelle Obama’s page as well, but I would have liked to see more tweet’s from the Vice President himself instead of having his campaign staff write them himself. Al Gore’s page was a lot different. Since being a presidential candidate, Al has turned his focus in a different direction and has made several documentaries about our current climate conditions and it seemed that was all he tweeted about. I didn’t find out if he tweeted his own tweets but every single tweet was in someway shape or form about our climate, which made his twitter page very mundane and boring.There wasn’t anything on his Twitter page that was personal, and it felt like reading a history book or something factual rather than a social media page. If I were either of their social media managers I would try to convince them that it is important to interact with the people as well as keep a close eye on the internet. With the scares of terrorism and horrible things happening, you can’t be too careful in what is said, but it is important to give the American people a sense of closeness and that you relate to their problems.
In conclusion, social media is an application that has become a staple in today’s world. It is important as a business and even as a professional to include social media in selling yourself and even projects or products. It is important to research the do’s and dont’s of social media to make sure you are following the correct guidlelines and educating yourself on how to highlight the best features of you or your business. Social media is a good way to cover all grounds and all demographics in all aspects of the world. By taking advantage of the social media bandwagon, you or your business can get a handle of better promoting and branding in the face of the public.
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