Proactive Approach to Social Media

I recently started reading Bonnie Nardi and Vicki O’Day’s Information Ecologies, which promotes active analysis to ensure the right technology is used in the right way to drive values and results. As noted in the headline of this blog, I am trying to apply this thinking to my every day use of technology at work, home and everywhere in between.

Rather than simply adopting to keep pace or just because, mindful consumers must first consider the purpose and potential repercussions.My last couple posts have discussed brand success on social sites like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Leading with tips for user engagement on a scattered selection of social sites now feels like I started the story in the middle.

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Ads Hit Pinterest and Instagram

Instagram recently unveiled a sample sponsor post on its blog to prepare its users for what’s to come. This news comes about one month after Pinterest revealed promoted pins on their blog. I can’t help but note how the visual-based platforms took strikingly similar approaches to breaking the big ‘business model’ news.

Both blog posts reference: Continue reading

#TBT Cultivating Connection

Baby Brother Picture

#TBTT: Throwback Tech Tuesday

Reading The Culture of Connectivity by Jose Van Dijck, I came across an interesting quote regarding how Facebook’s Timeline format:

“Cues members to post pictures from the pre-Facebook days of their youth – a baby picture, family snapshots, school classes, old friends, college years, wedding pictures, honeymoon – and thus experience content in terms of their life’s story…Timeline caused enhanced feelings of intimacy, memory and connectedness” (55).

My Facebook identity begins the day I created my profile. I upload pictures and videos in real-time, but did not readily add media reflecting my pre-Facebook life. That is until the creation of the platform-agnostic trend Throwback Thursday.

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Convenience Culture

I was recently surfing through Amazon and could not stop thinking about how dramatically online capabilities have altered traditional shopping. You no longer have to leave the couch or ask an associate if they have more sizes in the back. You may not bring a friend, but who needs one? Algorithms pull items according to your taste and other shoppers post lengthy reviews that can reaffirm or negate your concerns.

This reminds me again of that Winston Churchill quote used by Sherry Turkle in Alone Together: “We shape buildings and then they shape us.” Computer’s reshaping of culture goes beyond shopping – it creates new consumer expectations for all brands/companies.

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Better on Screen?

“We shape our building and then they shape us.” Sherry Turkle closes the intro to her book Alone Together with this Winston Churchill quote asking that consumers think about the impacts of technology and whether it serves “our human purposes” (19). With this approach in mind, let’s consider how technology reshapes our interactions.

What is the preferred medium for communication? Turkle spotlights the proliferation of emails as well as text and instant messages, and even uses the phrase “avoid the voice” (206) to address the decline in face-to-face and phone conversations. Before pointing at Gen Y speed texters, understand that the screen communication trend transcends generations. It also applies to interactions with family, friends, coworkers and customers.

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