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Case Study – Nike Megatron Apparel

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On November 21, Nike posted several images regarding Megatron apparel that will be released on December 7.  Since posting, Nike received 18,396 likes for this post on Facebook, featuring a clothing line specifically focused on Megatron or Calvin Johnson, wide receiver for the Detroit Lions.

The following are some of the highlights of the options to be released tomorrow.  Some of the images have over 600 likes.

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It’s really not much of a surprise to see Nike as successful and creating high engagement with its followers.  On Facebook alone, Nike has 11 million likes.  However Nike is not very consistent in its posts.  The most recent post was November 30.  Looking further down their Facebook page, Nike does occasionally post more frequently than other times.  But when Nike does post something on Facebook, its followers are all over it.  Its most recent post was introducing the Kobe 8 System.  This post got over 10,000 likes.

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As seen in this Facebook screen shot, Nike continues to attract new followers weekly on a large-scale.  And just as many people are talking about the brand.  Also the majority of Nike’s followers are aged between 18 and 24.

Nike is a globally known company and is able to get consumer engagement from around the world.  For this Calvin Johnson apparel, this is only possible since Nike got the NFL contract, which I won’t lie, I’m pretty excited about.  Calvin Johnson is one of the best known wide receivers in the NFL and is popular among more than just Lions’ fans, which creates some of the hype for this new apparel.

With this particular post, Nike got 2,176 shares, and this is even before the product has actually been released (as stated above, it’s not available until December 7).  I think Nike is able to get such high engagement with this particular post because it really is unique.  Not only because Nike solely has the NFL contract, but nothing like this has been done before (as far as I’m aware).  It provides an intriguing way for fans to show their loyalty to Megatron.

I think it’s amazing that Nike is able to get such engagement when they aren’t consistently posting.  I also looked into their twitter account and the frequency there is about the same as their Facebook usage.  Nike’s Twitter does not have nearly as many followers as Facebook with only having 779,553 followers.

I think part of Nike’s ultimate success is that they have already established their brand and people know them around the globe.  People trust the Nike brand, so when they post on social media, their fans are there to support them.


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Best Buys’ Social Media Policy

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With the development of social media and companies interacting more and more with customers, many have felt it necessary to instate social media policies.  Many people feel that these policies are restricting and are just more rules for employees to follow and don’t really have a real purpose.

However I think it is important to take a closer look on what these policies actually say, I decided to examine Best Buys’ social media policy.  Some of the parts I found most interesting were the need to disclose your affiliation; meaning if you talk about work related matters that are within your area of job responsibility you must disclose your affiliation with Best Buy.

Another aspect to Best Buy’s social media policy I found interesting was state that it’s your opinion, meaning when commenting on the business, unless authorized to speak on behalf of Best Buy, you must state that the views expressed are your own. Hourly employees should not speak on behalf of Best Buy when they are off the clock.

I think the idea behind the policy is to inform employees about what is acceptable, even though most of it I feel is common sense, still needs to be in writing so employees know what is expected of them.  When putting them into writing it leaves little, if no room for interpreting what you think it means.  Because once you get into the room of interpreting the employer could get into trouble, legal or other, and the employees playing the “I didn’t know” card.  I think social media policies are important to have in businesses.

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I think that it is important that in the social media policy has the potential consequences that could arise such as getting fired, getting Best Buy in legal trouble with customers or investors, and costing Best Buy the ability to get and keep customers.

Overall I think social media policies are beneficial to businesses and will continue to be seen and developed in the future.

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Case Study – Routine Baseball

Routine Baseball was started by two college friends, Tony Knapton and Michael DeGrave.  The original idea behind Routine Baseball all started in 2009 while Tony and Michael were attending University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.  The two of them were sitting around one night having a few beers when Tony walked out with his ragged state baseball t-shirt he had received many years earlier while participating in the Wisconsin State Baseball Tournament and Mike told him it looked like an old bar rag and it should be retired.  The idea was created later that night to bring baseball lovers a clothing line that would bring baseball and fashion to one entity.

With Tony attending Stevens Point for graphic design and Mike for business, the two knew they had a combination that could make the idea a reality.  On November 1, 2011, Routine Baseball was launched with just six t-shirt designs.  In just over a year, Routine Baseball now has over 75 different products.

Routine Baseball was completely started from scratch and has used social media to climb into a well-known baseball clothing line.  On Twitter, Routine Baseball has 31,534 followers and 9,523 fan on Facebook.  This will focus on their Twitter presence.  They have been using Twitter to give shout-outs to various ball players for success.  They tweet photos of new and current gear listed on their website.  They tweet various prizes/contests for their followers.

One of the first campaigns they decided to do on Facebook and Twitter was called “Dugouting.”

What they wanted their fans to do, was to photograph themselves photograph themselves is various random places “dugouting.”  Some of these photos received over 300 likes on Facebook.

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Only the most popular photos were placed on Facebook.  The idea behind the campaign is that the winner receives three t-shirts or hats of his or her choosing.  Not only were the images user-generated, the winner was picked by Routine Baseball’s Facebook fans.  They have used the dugouting campaign twice now since Routine Baseball’s founding.  By using the user-generated content, Routine Baseball was able to increase its social media traffic and gain more coverage of its clothing.

Routine Baseball was completely started from the ground and has used social media to move up as one of the nation’s only baseball clothing.  It is amazing how Tony and Mike have been able to build their brand using only social media.  They now have such people as Brewer’s catcher, Jonathan Lucroy wearing their apparel.

Brewer’s catcher Jonathon Lucroy wearing Routine Baseball

Make the easy plays look easy, and the hard plays look ROUTINE.

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The Gender Wage Gap

When trying to figure out what to write about this week I came across an article on Ad Age from New Zealand and the YWCA, well technically a video that points out how absurd it is that men are paid more for doing the same job as a women.  I thought this is appropriate for my blog this week, seeing as I am graduating in less than two weeks and am a female.

I’m excited and nervous about my upcoming graduation, entering the “real world” and leaving college behind.  I’m optimistic about all the possibilities awaiting.  However it is scary not knowing where I’ll be or what is going to happen, or where I’ll get my first job.

An article on the National Committee of pay equity states some of the facts about the gender wage gap.  In the article the National Women’s Law Center is sited stated that the wage gap persists at all levels of education.  In 2011, the typical women in the United States with a high school diploma working full-time, year round was paid only 74 cents for every dollar to her male counterpart.

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Many people feel the wage gender gap is staple of feminist rhetoric, saying ‘women make less money than men because of discrimination.  However an article in Bloomberg possess the contrary, saying that it is not a discrimination problem.  In the article, conservative economist Diana Furchtgott-Roth points out that part of the gap reflects the fact that women, on average, work fewer hours than men.

In the Bloomberg article, Furchtgott-Roth cites a 2005 study by economists June O’Neill and Dave O’Neill, which found that for the most part “the gender gap is attributable to choices made by women concerning the amount of time and energy to devote to a career.” They continue: “There is no gender gap in wages among men and women with similar family roles.”

For me at least, I don’t believe the gender wage gap is based on discrimination.  There is lots of information to back up that position also.  I also am a person who thinks that if a man and woman are equally qualified and work the same amount of hours there should not be a gap in pay, because to me, well that is discrimination.


Creating Your Personal Brand

With midterms over and the fear of finals quickly approaching, the end of the semester is so close.  Thanksgiving is this week; everyone is excited about a short week.  As students, we’re worried about what we all need to accomplish during Thanksgiving break.  And after Thanksgiving, the downhill sprint to finals is on.  And for me December graduation is quickly approaching.  As part of the hustle and bustle, along with other graduating seniors, we can’t wait, but are nervous for what the future has in store for us.

With graduation drawing near, and everybody asking about my plans after graduation, it becomes more daunting thinking about finding a job and finding the right one.  One way to prepare for after graduation, is knowing and creating your personal brand.

For each individual, his or her personal brand will be different from each others, but the elements are the same.  As described in an article by  , the 4 Ps of marketing can be used to create your personal brand.  As with the tradition 4 Ps of marketing, the Ps are product, price, place and promotion.  In the article, he states the following explanations for each P:  Product:  Be consistent and recognizable; Price:  Know you value; Place:  Recognize your Niche; and Promotion:  Communicate your brand.

Knowing how to utilize each of the Ps is beneficial for college students and recent graduates looking for that all important first job.  The product refers to what you as an individual actually have to offer.  With your product, you should remain consistent and recognizable; what makes you different from everyone else out there.  As Bharadwaj suggests, knowing your value has two dimensions.  The first is the value you can add to a business and the second is what you as an individual are actually worth.  He also points out in the article that you need to be realistic about where your target audience spends their time. Research who needs your services and where they participate online. Spreading yourself too thin across communities and niches where your products and services aren’t needed will only make more work for you with little reward.  And finally knowing how to promote yourself is crucial.  Knowing which channels are most appropriate for your chosen career path, such as using LinkedIn to connect with professionals.

Knowing your personal brand and being able to express it is all important for college students and recent graduates.  As part of this group, I find myself making strides towards creating my personal brand and hoping that when graduation is here, I’m ready.


Facebook Down for One Long Minute

The Huffington Post referred to it as “Facebook Down:  The Great 60 Second Outage of 2012,” and Mashable stated “Internet Users Nearly Lose it After Facebook’s Momentary Downtime.”

On Thursday November 8, Facebook experienced some downtime for a few short minutes starting just before 2 p.m. EST.  And then the tweets began.

Several people were also tweeting about people’s productivity rising at work as a result of Facebook being down.

As a college student, I find myself checking my Facebook rather frequently.  It’s a great way to distract from studying or other school work I should be getting done.  It’s also a good way to find various information, especially about upcoming events.

However I would not consider myself addicted to Facebook; I rarely check my Facebook when I’m home and spend lots of time away during summer.  And on that note, I just think it is unbelievable how dependent most everyone has become on technology and his or her Facebook.

So shouldn’t this momentary Facebook “crisis” make you wonder how long you could handle losing your access to social media.

I feel that for many people, it would be very difficult to not have access to their social media.

One teacher decided to test how well his students could handle not being able to check various media.  Oneida High School teacher, Mark Vinette, allowed students in his multimedia Applications class to volunteer to abstain from using media for communications or entertainment for four days as an alternative to a traditional exam.

Some of these students found a new appreciation for face-to-face connections but also an appreciation for the media they usually took for granted.

I know I find myself frustrated with people and their constant need to check Facebook, Twitter, their emails, or whatever else they feel they need to check especially when they are with other people.

I honestly do hope that people will realize they don’t need to know things immediately and slow down to enjoy what is happening right in front of them.


Google Alerts

According to Dennis Jenders, Interactive and Communications Strategist at Laughlin Constable, everybody should be using Google Alerts.  Google Alerts are a great option and way to discover more about every sort of topic on the web.

When you sign up for Google Alerts, an email is sent to you when Google finds new results, such as web pages, newspaper articles, or blogs that match your search criteria.  Google Alerts can be used to find out what is being said about their company or product, monitor a developing news story, keep up to date on a competitor or industry, get the latest news on a celebrity or sports team, or find out what’s being said about themselves.

To use Google Alerts, first you enter a query that you’re interested in.  Then Google Alerts checks regularly to see if there are new results for the entered query.  And finally if there are new results, Google Alerts sends them to you in an email.

For general queries, you can get a summary of the new results daily.  However, for specific topics, you might not get an email every day, but you’ll find out when something new and relevant is published.  Each email you receive contains a link to delete the alert, so you have the option to cancel any time you choose.  Also Google Alerts has several other settings to help you customize your updates.  Another benefit of Google Alerts is that they offer several tips to enhance your use of Google Alerts and the results that are emailed to you.

With Google Alerts, you have the opportunity to stay up-to-date on anything and everything you might have some kind of interest in.  And they are sent right to your email account – so it’s not like you even have to go looking for information to stay current.