UGA's Alumni Association has chapters in many of the major cities all around the country. Jenny, my mentor, advised me to connect with the chapters via Facebook in all of the cities I'm considering working in. Basically, these groups serve as a liaison to connect UGA grads in different cities. Often times, active chapters will organize socials and events where Dawgs of all ages will gather to watch the games, network, and bond over drinks while reminiscing about their glory days. Like us, these members bleed red and black and are going to be more than willing to help another Dawg out. Did a spontaneous interview pop up in a city where hotels are pricey and you don't have any family or friends? Post an S.O.S. on that city's Alumni Facebook group page asking if anyone has a couch you can crash on. Want to get your foot in the door at a certain company? Post in the group asking if anyone has a connection there (of course, make sure to provide your LinkedIn handle and add in a little "Go Dawgs" at the end). Even if you're not a UGA student, surely your university's Almuni Association has similar groups. Knowing that these groups exist make moving to a new city a little bit more familiar and will surely result in great connections, new friends, and maybe even a couch to crash on.
Which city are you headed to post-graduation? Check out some of these alumni groups below & connect with them: UGA Alumni website to find a chapter!
Earlier last week, mylacroix.com took the Internet by storm. Okay, maybe not the whole Internet, but La Croix fanatics were most definitely freaking out over this ingenious La Croix flavorizer--blowing up Facebook and Twitter feeds with their customized La Croix .gifs. Think: Lay's annual "Do Us a Flavor" contest, sans the $1M incentive and the chance to have your product actually roll out on the production line. Mylacroix.com is a user generated website allowing fans to customize La Croix cans and flavors and then share images of their creations on social media. The disclaimer at the bottom of the site reads " We're not affiliated with La Croix, we just like to treat ourselves."
You see, La Croix's fan base is loyal. Like really loyal. I can honestly say that I drink between 3 and 9 La Croixs per day. It's kind of like the cilantro of beverages. People either love the stuff or they hate the stuff--there's no in between. So, props to you La Croix for building a fan base so loyal they break the internet with a .gif producing flavorizor website.
For those of you who aren't too sure about the whole La Croix craze, let me break it down for you. It's a drink that is known for what it doesn't have: sugar, sodium, calories, funny business. It's literally just water with carbonation and natural flavor in a can that is reminiscent of your glory days (aka the 90s). Although La Croixs have been chilling in the back of corporate fridges for years now, the fandom is starting to pick up heat and they are taking over the social mediasphere with parody accounts and satirical videos. Fans are driving La Croix's marketing and tbh, I think it's working.
User generated content (UGC) and customization are major keys in today's digital marketing world. What are some other brands who are doing UGC right?
Podcasts: Joining the Conversation
As more and more brands adopt content marketing into their strategy, the need to engage in two-way conversation with consumers is becoming increasingly important. Social platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook are making these conversations easier. Podcasts, "the digital medium built on the power of conversation" are often times over-looked and unexplored by marketers; however, findings from a recent study may change this trend.
"Podcasting is the digital medium built on the power of conversation."
Jason Hoch, Chief Content Officer at HowStuffWorks
Jason Hoch, Chief Content Officer at HowStuff Works, recently wrote an article for Adweek highlighting the the findings from a recent poll from about 1,000 podcast listeners. Approximately 65% of listeners reported that podcast ads increase purchase intent. Marketers and advertisers, time to join the conversation. Podcasts are all about stimulating ideas and many listeners have conversations about the conversations they are listening to with their peers. It's important to note that the people who listen to podcasts are smart, and "podcasts respect consumers intelligence and work hard to gain that respect from them, especially if they expect them to be listening for the long haul." Podcasts are simple. People listen to them on their work commute, before bed, or even while getting ready for the day. Listeners are engaged and are consciously thinking about the ideas presented in the episode.
Like this infographic? Get content marketing advice that works from Copyblogger.
Brands don't necessarily need to make their podcast ads blatantly obvious and in-your-face...and, they shouldn't. Like content marketing, brands can integrate and position themselves within a conversation. Associating BIG ideas with products and services will allow listeners to think deeply within the context of the brand--into unexplored areas that would otherwise be overlooked.
Is your target market listening to podcasts? In what ways would could your brand join the conversation?
Despite the countless times you've told your mom she can't zoom in on Instagram, she never fails to try--ultimately leading to disappointment and a screenshot so she can view the picture at maximum pixel distortion. Recently, Instagram released an update allowing users to pinch the screen to zoom-in, and moms could not be happier. Like moms, some brands are taking full advantage of this "new" feature. Well, new for Instagram; not new to the rest of the social mediasphere. So, why did Facebook owned Instagram just decide to allow users to have a closer look?
I have two predictions: One, I suspect the latest Zoom feature is a result of the outrage induced by teenagers who have taken to social media to complain about their moms who inevitably want to zoom-in on Instagram pictures. And two, as smartphones step up their pixel game and more and more people add photography to their LinkedIn skill set, Instagram is feeling the pressure to revamp their platform. For the everyday user, the new Zoom feature will enhance the overall experience while using the app. For brands, it's a new way to interact and engage consumers with their social media content. From digital scavenger hunts (think Where's Waldo) to incorporating small writing into their images, brands are learning how to take this "new" feature and use it to their advantage. See how these brands are zooming in:
While Instagram is a bit late to the zoom game (*cough* and the "stories" game *cough*), it's embracing these changes and revamping its image to tell a person's or a brand's entire story rather than various distinct moments. How might Zoom reflect their new image? What are some other ways brands can use Zoom to interact and engage? Share your thoughts below in the comment section!
I am a digital marketing student in the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia keeping up with the latest in social media marketing. Enjoy, share, comment, connect!