Words, Words and More Words

This past week in IMC619 we studied search engine optimization. Our task was to choose a Fortune 500 company and then choose three words to describe them. After choosing the words, we were to do searches on a desktop or laptop and our phones to see what we found. Results varied throughout the class.

I looked at Kroger as my search target. I chose three words, two of which I felt would definitely come up in searches. Those two were pharmacy and grocer. On the first page of my desktop search, Kroger was located tenth from the top for pharmacy. It appeared after CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Walmart and Caremark to name a few. My phone search did not show Kroger as being listed even when I clicked on the option of pharmacies in the Morgantown area.

The word “grocer” did not yield any results on either search. Some commentators even questioned why I would use that word because it’s not a “typical” word people use although it is a word that is associated with grocery stores, especially ones that sell produce. The term “green grocer” was used quite a bit when I was a kid and I have always called employees of local grocery stores grocers. Maybe it is relevant to my geographic area.

So what’s my point? How far should a company delve into search engine optimization? Should they be connected with any and all terms that relate to what they do? Should they only pay attention to words used today or should they figure out what words the various target markets they want to touch would use? Do these so called “obscure” words matter to a big company that may already be known?


I’m not sure there is a clear answer for these questions. The jury seems to be out as to whether keywords are as important as the placement of them. One thing I’m sure of is that companies need to continue to find the best way to connect with consumers via social media. If it’s through search engine optimization then it would seem to me that they should try to connect with words that most relate to what they do. Do you think it matters?



Blog Roll

Patricia Layte-Vidal – https://tinyarmmedia.wordpress.com

Amanda Renken – https://amandarenken.wordpress.com

Stephanie Holman – https://theheikkila.wordpress.com

Laura Mogulich – https://mediamog.wordpress.com

Alyssa Neil – https://alyssaneel.wordpress.com

Emily Griffith – https://mediamarketing2015.wordpress.com

Bridget Jones – https://bjonesemergingmedia.wordpress.com

Andrea Joliet – https://andreajolietblog.wordpress.com

Kelsey Berg – https://kelseybergblog.wordpress.com

Debbie Estep – https://debbieestep.wordpress.com

Keith Quesenberry – https://www.postcontrolmarketing.com

Sarim Razuiddin – https://theemergingmarketer.wordpress.com

Yvonne Unubun – https://yvonneunubunwrites.wordpress.com

Mariana DeLuca – https://synergydigitalmedia.wordpress.com

Kimberly Webber – https://kimberlywebberblog.wordpress.com

IMC Homepage – https://imc.wvu.edu

Jennifer Hice – https://hiceoncontent.wordpress.com


Is the challenge too big?

During our weekly class discussion this week I started thinking of why non-profits don’t use digital storytelling more to sell the charity. My initial thought was because of the cost of creating the video because they would need someone to produce it, someone to film it, someone to write it, and actors. But the more I thought about it, I’m not sure this is really the case. Yes, you need to have an idea of what and how you want to share your story. You need to have good equipment to film it and someone who will keep it moving and put it together, but it doesn’t have to come at a high cost.

One of the biggest challenges is figuring out where to focus your story. Do you focus on one person or focus on the community or event? Write down your thought and talk to others about what makes sense. Check out the various programs available to create videos and then make sure you have the necessary tools to make your video happen.

Don’t worry about having professional actors as selling your organization can happen by people who are passionate about it and want to support the cause. Set a timeline for your project and go to work. Connect with students at the local university who are working in film or digital marketing and ask them help out with the project. It gives them experience and allows you access to a different audience.

Will it be easy? Maybe not, but it is doable. I’m linking this post to an article I found called “How to create a polished, powerful digital story for yourself or your nonprofit.” Take a look and get some great tips about creating a video that fits your needs. Also check out Charity: Water’s digital storytelling. It’s a great example of how a non-profit can make digital storytelling work!

Blog 7

What do you think would be the biggest challenge for non-profits in creating digital stories? How could they overcome the challenge?



Good, Bad, or Scary?

We are all familiar with the internet and, more than likely, all of us use it in some way or another, from our computers, tablets, smart phones, to now even in our cars. In the past couple of years, all the things that connect us via the internet has been given a name – “The Internet of Things (IoT).” IoT is defined as an environment in which objects, animals or people are provided with unique identifiers and the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. Thus, everything we do is connected in one way or another.

Some interesting facts about IoT include that it started 16 years ago; experts estimate that by 2020, 90% of cars will be connected to the Internet; and by 2018, mobile data traffic will exceed 15 Exabytes—that’s 12.7 million years of online video streaming per month.  Some other interesting statistics are shown below.

2020 graphci

What’s even more interesting to me is that there is only a portion of the tools we currently use that are connected. In the years to come, there is nothing that won’t be connected through the internet.

Because there seems to be no limit to what can be done with information found on the internet, the Internet of Things makes the world an oyster for marketers. Some have a clear vision—to create a world where every object—from jumbo jets to sewing needles—is linked to the Internet.” There are even cities being created that are totally connected to the Internet of Things which will provide marketers with a variety of opportunities to be creative in how they interact and reach out to customers.

I think there are a variety of ethical concerns regarding the Internet of Things. The biggest concern is that having such instant access to people’s privacy and being able to track their every move can open them up to being stalked by companies. As technology plays an increasing role in the lives of people, they lose their ability to be free thinking, uncensored and unwatched by others, much like in the novel “1984.” “There are broader ethical issues to consider. What are the areas wherein such devices would not be appropriate to use? How should the law deal with smart devices if an incorrect decision is acted on by someone? Who or what is responsible?”

I’m not sure about you, but this is a bit scary to me. We have so many rules and regulations already about things in the world we live in, do you think more needs to be developed for the Internet of Things?


Advergaming or Adverblaming?

This week in IMC 619 we’ve been taking a closer look at advergaming. Advergaming is an online video game that promotes a particular brand, product, or marketing message by integrating it into the game. There are a variety of companies utilizing advergaming as a major part of their advertising campaigns. Some of the companies clearly state that the game consumers are about to play is an advertisement while others don’t indicate that fact anywhere in the game.

Advergames photo

That it is not always clear whether the game is an ad or an actual game is interesting. What is even more interesting is that children have become major targets of food companies via advergames. The end result of this type of advertising is the undermining of the fight against juvenile obesity.

Because this tactic has become such a major concern, “the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is currently able to take action against a company if a game encourages poor nutritional habits, such as excessive consumption or unhealthy lifestyles.” With this in mind, it makes me wonder why a company would even attempt to create something that could potentially be seen as negative. The result of a company being seen as promoting negative eating habits is having its advergaming product banned and turning away parents who care about their children’s health.

The idea that advergaming can have an adverse effect on the market it is targeting leads me to wonder when it is that advergaming becomes adverblaming? Where is the line crossed from one to the other?


Turning Negative Nancy’s into Positive Paula’s

While doing research for this week’s discussion question I came across a couple companies who have had to deal with major faux pas on social media. One occurred on Chrysler’s site when an employee of the social media agency the corporation used posted “I find it ironic that Detroit is known as the #motorcity and yet no one here knows how to f**king drive.” The post was immediately removed with an apology made from Chrysler and the employee was fired.

In my work we have had to deal with some negative comments surrounding an event we were hosting. The same event had been held in a town near ours and was pretty much a disaster. The name of the event was the same but the company that put it on was different. Crowd control was an issue, tickets were oversold, and the end result was a lot of unhappy people and a couple of major injuries. There are three of us in our office who work with events and we spent a good deal of time talking about how we should manage these comments. We went back and forth and finally decided that we would deal with the comments individually. If the comment warranted a response we would make it, if it didn’t we would ignore it. Ultimately we continuously promoted the event with positive information and a connection to the company’s website that we were working with.

Negative comments are one of the downsides of having social media sites. So what does this mean for companies? It means that you have to be proactive, you have to continually watch comments and determine how to respond. Do you respond publicly, privately or not at all? You can create policies about how responses will occur but I think there also has to be some gray areas where you deal with comments individually. Here is some great advice for dealing with negative comments:

  • “Don’t delay – The more time you let them go unanswered, the more time others have to see that someone has complained and you haven’t responded.
  • Be apologetic as appropriate. If someone is complaining about your products, services, or anything else for that matter, say you’re sorry.
  • React publicly first, then take it private. If someone is being particularly difficult, take your communication with them to a private channel.
  • Share your appreciation for their feedback. Treat complaints as constructive criticism or feedback.
  • Ask them how you can help, then help. If the comment you’re dealing is just blatantly offensive and lacks context, tell the commenter you’re sorry and ask them how you can help make the situation better.
  • Pick your battles. There are some people out there who make noise just for the sake of making noise.

negative nancy

When using social media be prepared for the negative Nancy’s out there. They exist and eventually will make a comment that you have to address. Be prepared, be positive and do your best to turn that negative Nancy’s frown upside down!