Internet vs. College Football! Go! by Sebastien Perez

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Photo courtesy of: The Wall street Journal
                It’s a battle for attention between college football and the Internet and right now, the Internet is winning. According to an article written on The Wall Street Journal, student attendance at college football games has been decreasing the past four seasons and one of the contributing factors is poor cell phone service and people’s inability to separate themselves from their social media sites. High definition-televisions and food and beverages that don’t cost you a month’s salary certainly doesn’t help attendance rate either.
                The Wall Street Journal article states that 39% of student seats have been left empty at Georgia Bulldogs home games and 32% at Alabama Crimson Tide games over the past four years. The article added that many colleges are considering adding stadium-wide Wi-Fi networks to entice students attend home games.
                I think the decrease in attendance at college football games is a great opportunity for multiple social media sites to get involved stadiums. They could potentially offer sponsorship for the networks and prizes for students who attend games and use the social media sponsored Wi-Fi networks. For the social media sites, it means more traffic during Saturday game days and for the stadiums it means more fans in the stands. It could be a win-win situation if executed correctly. With how big of a sport football is in the south, you’re never going to completely rip people away from watching the pigskin go down the field live and why make people choose. Don’t make people choose between football and something else, guys, don’t be like the prime-time Sunday night slot. Just do the right thing and collaborate.
                The NFL is also experiencing similar difficulties and so far, the New England Patriots’ and the Philadelphia Eagles’ stadiums have installed Wi-Fi networks. The Wall Street Journal says that bad cell phone reception in stadiums is a bigger deal in college football than in the Nfl however.

                To read the Wall Street Journal article, go to: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304795804579097223907738780.html

Responsive Web Design

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Have you ever been on your phone and been frustrated by going to a site, social media or not, and having to endlessly scroll or zoom just to find what you’re looking for? Chances are, that site is not mobile compatible and its designers haven’t caught on to an important trend: responsive web design (RWD).
Image found at: NextPromote
Now this is not necessarily a new trend, but is one gaining traction and importance because of the huge move to mobile devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones.
In fact, Forbes predicts that three years from now, 87 percent of connected device sales will be tablets and smartphones.

What is RWD? The best definitionI’ve found explained, “Responsive web design is the approach that suggests that design and development should respond to the users behavior and environment based on screen size, platform and orientation.”
Another waywas that it “enables any device capable of accessing the web to have a functional experience on your site.”
This trend has benefits for three categories of people: content creators, organizations that need to create content as a means to an end, and users.
Content Creators
This trend helps web designers by getting rid of the constant need to create a different site for each new device that comes to market. This also goes for marketers, creatives, advertisers, or whoever may be creating online content.
Responsive web design is a solution to this problem by creating what I heard called “flexible content.” Basically, it’s like a Mom cooking a meal for tons of children and they’re all picky eaters with their own specific tastes. She is able to make a meal that she can change and easily put on the plate differently so that each child is happy and satisfied. It’s the same meal. She only had to make one but still made each child happy.
Organizations
Not only does this trend help the people behind the scenes, or screens (cause both words work), it is also beneficial to the organization. If an organization’s web content can lend a helping hand in building credibility and reputation, why not have that content in the way users want?
Michael Cohnexplainedthat having a website easily accessible to users on all their various device choices gives that organization credibility, a better reputation (as one that cares about how its website translates across platforms), and brings more people to its site cause it’s easy, not frustrating.
Content on the web is not there for contents sake, but to communicate to people. This content not only communicates what it may cover, such as the “About Us” page, but also communicates if the organization is advanced, intelligent, updated and so on. RWD is a means through which an organization can reach the end of increasing visibility and credibility and, hopefully, making a profit.
Users
As time goes on, user patience does not. People want information clearly, quickly and succinctly. This is especially true for when you’re on your phone or small device.
RWD benefits us as the users by giving us the information in ways we want it given. I am much more satisfied when I am looing at a website on my phone when it’s mobile compatible. Trust me, it makes a world of a difference.
Thoughts
I agree that this is a needed trend for any business that wants to share content on the web. Mark Hawkins called it a “business imperative.” This is especially so, specifically with social media because it’s becoming a huge part of content marketing and advertising.
One Social Media Today articlestated, “Mobile friendly content is essential for 2014 as the shift from computers to mobile devices accelerates, businesses won’t remain competitive unless content is accessible and engaging to mobile users.”
Not only does it make it easier for those creating content, it satisfies those reading the content. It’s a win-win situation in my eyes, and one that every organization that has a website should institute (which should be every organization).
For more information, please read some of the following articles:

Responsive Web Design: What It Is and How To Use It

How to Find, Optimize and Share Content for Mobile Devices

Twitter and the History Books
Jonathan Woodul
It’s going to be interesting to see how the history books are written in another half century or so. Mashable recently had a very interesting article, which you can see here, that talks about an algorithm that essentially writes your life story using your tweets. Also, congress is archiving all of Americas tweets, which you can read more about over here.
            This is all very creepy to me, and I would be surprised if it didn’t creep all of you out too. But this type of information does have a very interesting value. The next Albert Einstein or Martin Luther King Jr. will leave a serious Internet footprint (assuming they use social media, which is more than likely).  We won’t just be able to learn about these people through their speeches and the odd diary page; we will have a near day-to-day record about their lifestyle and activities.
            This would let us see how they were able to shape themselves into the great people that they became. It would also let us see just how human they really were. I can’t help but think that some of the legend and mystique associated with great historical figures would be lost if we were able to look up what they ate for lunch on a particular day, or read their opinions on a sitcom finale that stopped running decades ago. In a sense, these people would become almost too human.
            This might not be entirely a bad thing though. One could even argue that the way we in which we build up historical figures to such mythical heights today is unhealthy. After all, these were just people, great and influential people maybe, but still people. And maybe there’s some value in remembering that.

Google+ to become a major factor in 2014

By: Michael Zewdu

Facebook is the leader in monthly users on a social media network with 1.15 billion, according to Forbes. This number should not be alarming since almost everyone has an account.  It is hard to find someone who doesn’t have one.  There is no reason to believe that they should fall heading into 2014.
Although this is true, second on the list Google+ is a close second and is catching up.  According to Forbes, there are 343 million monthly users of Google+.  As Google+ gains users, there will be more opportunity for advertisers to come in and use their space.
Also, with more users there will be more investors to the site and that will be a welcome site for Google.  I believe that Google wants to have the benefits of Facebook or Twitter or even LinkedIn, but they want to differentiate themselves with the search engine.  No matter how much Google tries they may never compete with Facebook as far as social networking, but Facebook will never be Google either.
It is funny how far Google has come since being one of the many search engines to being THE search engine.  They have owned the category for a long time now but they are still growing and looking for ways to gain more of a competitive advantage.  There is really no end to Google’s projected growth.
According to a blog from searchmetrics.com, with new services like Google glasses and mandatory creation of an account for Android activation, the rise of Google+ is inevitable.  These new ideas may be only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Google and what it may become in the future.  With many great minds and creatives alike working for Google, the growth is hard to project. 
They are already the number one search engine and an up-and-coming social media platform, but now they are thinking of ways to take over other aspects of the web.  Google is here to stay so Facebook better check their rear view mirrors and think of ways to improve and they better do it fast if they want to stay atop the social media platforms.

Pinterest Pro-Tips

By: Leah Grimes

Cole Field, Director of Search Marketing and Innovations at Splash Media, was guest speaker at Thursday’s Ad Club meeting. I was expecting to learn about SEO (search engine optimization) or something else with an intimidating acronym. Instead, Cole shared advice on using one of his favorite social media sites- Pinterest.

I’ve tried to hop on the Pinterest wagon in the past, but I never felt the attachment like I have with Twitter. Cole, however, was extremely passionate about it, and I think he motivated the whole room to at least check out what the site had to offer.

He shared a few tips with us to optimize our pages, or in the future- our clients’ pages. I’ll tell three of them to those of you who missed the meeting (the next one is on 10/24).

1. SEO your pins.

So I guess he did share some SEO advice, but this was specific to pins. Cole explained SEO to us – it’s how Google categorizes information. When using SEO, he told us to consider certain things. How relevant are you to someone’s search? How authoritative are you? Here’s an example of how he used SEO for a pin of his, ironically about SEO- note the hashtags. They make it easier for his pin to come up in search.

2. Cross promote on different streams.

He urged us to share new pins on Facebook, Twitter, or blogs. He also advised us to make sure our websites were “pinny.” Making your website “pinny,” is making it easy for your viewers to easily pin a photo, via the “Pin It” button.

3. Customize your board covers.

This was my favorite advice Cole gave. It gives your page uniformity and personality. He made his own images for the board covers, using the same font, but giving each cover a different feel based on the board’s theme. You really just have to visit his Pinterest page to understand!

Perhaps these tips will help you improve your Pinterest. Or perhaps you might use them in the future when you’re managing a brand’s Pinterest as a social media manager!

The Smart Watch Realized
by Nick Cooper

Recently, I saw a TV ad for a new device. The commercial began with a timeline of old TV shows, movies, and cartoons, all apparently playing prophet to this futuristic device. The commercial ended with the new Samsung smart watch over a black background looking as futuristic as all those other TV shows and movies must have in their time, and a simple tagline, “ Finally, it’s real.” It was a powerful message and great advertising, but does it deliver?
The Samsung smart watch, despite its claim, is not the first crack at this and is not even the only one in existence. Sony has already had one on the market and is on its second one. These smart watches thus far can only be used via blue tooth and as of yet they are not a stand alone product. In the case of Samsung, its smart watch is only compatible with the Galaxy 3 and costs $300. Still, it is a great stepping stone toward something that could be great. You can make phone calls from it, read texts, listen to music, use up to 70 apps, and even take pictures.

I certainly see social media applicability in the smart watch and hopefully Apple will have its version, which is in the works currently, up and running soon to really kick the smart watch into a device in demand.   

Social Media and Politics

Kelcey Blanks
With the government on its 12th day of shutdown and Obamacare being introduced, people are sharing their frustration and distaste on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.
It seems that everyone in America is talking on social media about how the government shutdown is impacting their lives. Federal workers are using Twitter for an outlet and giving the public a personal spin on how the government shutdown is affecting them.
Companies have even started websites to show how much Congress is making every second since the government has been temporarily out of business. 


Not only is social media a way for people to express their feelings, it is now an outlet to talk about political issues including the shutdown and introduction new healthcare. People are very unhappy with how our government is conducting American business so they are able to speak with others who share their feelings on Twitter or Facebook.
Congress’ approval level is at an all time low and it seems to be in direct correlation with the breaking news coming in through social media on an hourly basis. It is impossible to get on Twitter the last week or so without having your news feed blown up with new stories about the government shutdown, the new healthcare policy or something Obama is talking about that day.
Another huge social media coverage was that of politician Anthony Weiner and his scandalous picture taking. People on Twitter and Facebook were in a complete uproar over the situation and it was talked about for two weeks straight.
With social media in full force, it is impossible for our government to slide by without Americans being informed of what they are doing or planning. Social media is constantly checking our government – and it is a good thing that we are becoming more aware.