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Facebook & Twitter Newsy Trends

June 5, 2015 Comments off

Good or bad the social media stratosphere continues to change. This post is a brief update on Facebook and Twitter News and Trends.

Facebook News and Trends

  1. It’s no secret that Facebook post reach is significantly decreasing, and has become a serious problem for business owners who are spending lots of money and using the platform for marketing purposes. This steady decline in reach is what has been coined the Filtered Feed Problem.  As Facebook continues to limit the number of posts page fans actually see, the demand for promoted posts and ads are continuing to increase. And, with this increased demand will come increased pricing. According to an Ad Weekarticle in 2014 Q1 Facebook ad pricing was up 10% over 2013 Q4 pricing. This trend is likely to continue throughout all of 2015, as organic post reach continues to fall.
  2. Introducing Instant Articles. Facebook is giving publishers a tool to create fast, interactive articles on Facebook. Instant Articles is a tool for publishers to create fast, interactive articles on Facebook and was designed to give them control over their stories, brand experience and monetization opportunities. Read more
  3. Now you can choose to explicitly send a map of your location or another particular place as a separate message. Read more Providing a new method to send a Facebook friend your current location, the development team working on Facebook Messenger has launched a feature that provides a visual map of your current location or a destination location. As detailed within a post on the Facebook Newsroom, this action can be performed within a conversation, particularly ideal when attempting to coordinate a meeting location between friends.  Read more:
  4. Announcing Facebook Lite. Introducing Facebook Lite, a new version of Facebook for Android that uses less data and works well across all network conditions.
    Read more

Twitter Trends & News

  1. #confused? Twitter starts explaining trending hashtags for you. Read more:
    Follow: @digitaltrends on Twitter | digitaltrendsftw on Facebook
  2. Twitter’s new business advertising model, will it skyrocket in popularity?  With Twitter’s move to offering businesses more choice and flexibility in how and what they pay for in terms of advertising, more small and medium sized businesses will jump on the Twitter ad bandwagon.  The new fee structure allows businesses to pay for certain performance-based actions rather than just retweets or clicks.

Hacked US GOVT = Not So Safe Social Media?

June 5, 2015 Comments off

What Comes Next? 5 Social Media Trends for 2015I normally do a great deal of my own research when I put a blog post together here. But, I want everyone to read is what was predicted for social media trends for 2015, that HootSuite CEO, Ryan Holmes wrote. (I’ ve reposted some parts of his article below).

Why? Well with the very recent news of OPM being hacked, I am very concerned with our rush to produce new payment systems across social platforms given the recent and ongoing hacking targeting the USA.  The following question I have that begs more professional media and communications discussion: Are we wildly scaling social media too much, too far, too fast?

Holmes stated at the end of 2014, “the challenge in 2015 becomes how to more intelligently integrate the fast-growing Internet of Things with social media. In short, smart devices need to improve their social intelligence.”

“Increasing demand for (truly) private social media gives way to the real thing
2014 saw a number of anonymous and ephemeral social networks—Snapchat, Secret, Whisper, Yik Yak and Telegram, to name a few—surge in popularity. Not everyone wants every conversation over social media broadcast to the world, after all. At the same time, savvy users are increasingly aware—and concerned—about ways personal data is being collected and later sold to advertisers, manipulated in tests or accessed by government agencies.”

“The problem is that few of these “private” networks fulfill their mandates. Snapchat has been hacked, repeatedly, with hundreds of thousands of sensitive—supposedly disappearing—user photos posted on the Internet. And in October, it was revealed that the anonymous network Whisper was actually saving users’ posts and locations and compiling this information in a searchable database. As Venture Beat points out, real anonymity and privacy on the Internet is extremely difficult to achieve. While it’s easy to make promises, it’s nearly impossible to deliver.”

“since Facebook and especially Twitter are real-time media, they’re perfect for short-term deals tied in with fleeting trends. With time-sensitive offers literally streaming by, consumers may well be inclined to act quickly and seal the deal, forgoing the obsessive comparison shopping that characterizes lots of Internet transactions.”

“Finally, there are major benefits to advertisers. Connecting individual Tweets and Facebook posts with actual purchases has thus far proved a huge analytical challenge. But with the advent of buy buttons, concrete revenue figures can be attached to specific social media messages in a way that hasn’t been possible until now.”

There is a need for the US Citizens especially our youth to know this information. Help them understand that they should not be so liberal about everything they post and tweet, and share.

Communicating Change – Spring Contest

May 5, 2015 Comments off

Alice's Seed Box for Essay ContestThe recent events in Baltimore and other cities have brought about more communication questions than answers, and these questions often do not produce the results or signigicant changes that citizens need.

I believe we can start a dialog for change through collaborative community projects.

Therefore, I and my colleaques at Flatlands Avenue LLC  though their Patriot Made Audio project are offering free garden seeds for spring planting, as part of our celebration of Mother’s Day and spring.

Therefore would like to inspire some of our own “seeds of hope and seeds of change” through a spring garden essay contest about how you would propose to help create hope and change.

Send your essay to patmadeaudio@gmail.com  and please put Spring Garden Contest in the subject line. The deadline is Sunday, May 10th on Mother’s Day (before midnight).  We look forward to awarding three individual seed boxes filled with a variety of seeds, to three lucky winners.

All you need to do is send us an original short essay proposing how you would best use the seeds by growing food for yourself and for others, and how you’ll further save and share new seeds with other family members, an organization. or as a joint collaborative project in your community.

The best ideas or most creative plans win!  

Potentially, in time, hundreds of people could be fed, at little to no cost through our seeds of hope and seeds of change spring contest. Such a project could feed change and better communication in communities.

The essay must be 500 words, or less.

The seed boxes are original pieces of art created by me (Alice Fisher).  This past weekend, I refurbished a few cigar boxes (hand sanded, painted and varnished them) and then packaged up a selection of her own heirloom, non-genetically modified (NGMO) seeds which I grew, dried and hand saved by myself on my small farm in Frederick County, Maryland.

The essay deadline date is Sunday, May 10th at midnight, and if you need some ideas for your essay, try a quick visit to Garden.org for more information and inspiration about gardening.

Rita Rich at Flatlands Avenue would like to follow-up with the winners in about three or four months with a special podcast interview, once your seeds of hope seeds of change projects have been implemented, and with any pictures you’d like to share as well.

We have three handcrafted seed boxes, filled with 10 – 14 different seed varieties which we’ll send out FREE to our three winners.

These simple hand painted boxes would possibly make a great Mother’s Day garden gift, or some kind of project for all the senior moms in a community, city or for a school to feed children.

The seeds, will keep for up to 25 years, if they stored in a freezer, and can be used for many years to come.

Please share with us your gardening dreams and creative community ideas, and we’ll share with you our seeds of hope and change from my very own garden.

It’s our way of saying, Happy Mother’s Day and happy gardening to you and yours, as you build memories together.

Seeds hold the promise of hope and change, maybe even better communication. Email us your essay at patmadeaudio@gmail.com.   Please write Spring Garden Contest in the subject line.

Is Radio Dead? Enter Podcasting!

March 16, 2015 Comments off

Image result for radio microphone wallpaperIs radio dead?  And, should we just burn the old radio microphone? Well for that matter, are all traditional news channels irrelevant? It seems that Native Digital News is the key to the future of media. Even, PEW’s State of the News Media Report for 2014 talked about the shift in the growth in digital reporting.

The following are some key points to consider, from the PEW 2014 overview.  A year ago, the State of The News Media Report struck a somber note, citing evidence of continued declines in the mainstream media that were impacting both content and audience satisfaction. As indicated above and throughout this post, many of these issues still exist, some have deepened and new ones have emerged. Still, the level of new activity during the past year is creating a perception that something important, perhaps even game-changing, is going on.

  1. Digital players have exploded onto the news scene, (and into our personal lives) bringing technological know how and new money which is luring top talent. For example, BuzzFeed, once scoffed at for content viewed as “click bait,” now has a news staff of 170, including top names like Pulitzer Prize-winner Mark Schoofs, and is the kind of place that ProPublica’s Paul Steiger says he would want to work at if he were young again. Mashable now has a news staff of 70 and enticed former New York Times assistant managing editor Jim Roberts to become its chief content officer. And in January of this year, Ezra Klein left the Washington Post for Vox media, which will become the new home for his explanatory journalism concept.
  2. Philanthropic money has increased as well, in many cases focused on smaller outlets seeking to fill the gap in news coverage left by legacy cutbacks. As recently as March 2014, the Jerome L. Greene Foundation announced a $10 million grant to New York Public Radio to help build its digital capabilities, an expressed need among nonprofits.
  3. The year also brought more evidence than ever that news is a part of the explosion of social media and mobile devices, and in a way that could offer opportunity to reach more people with news than ever before. Half of Facebook users get news in their feeds even though they did not go there looking for it. And, the Facebook users who get news at the highest rates are 18-to-29-year-olds.
  4. Here are the events of the past year, put in some perspective. The first-ever accounting found roughly 5,000 full-time professional jobs at nearly 500 digital news outlets, most of which were created in the past half dozen years. But the vast majority of bodies producing original reporting still comes from the newspaper industry. But, those newspaper jobs are far from secure. Full-time professional newsroom employment declined another 6.4% in 2012.
  5. Since the fall of 2013, there has been a dramatic and conspicuous migration of high-profile journalists to digital news ventures. In October, Yahoo hired high-profile New York Times tech columnist David Pogue, who was followed a month later by Times political writer Matt Bai. In late October, former Times assistant managing editor Jim Roberts became chief content officer at Mashable’s growing news operation.
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Photo by: Damien Maloney

Furthermore in support of Pew’s State of the Media research, I’ve read a timely article or two in Wired Magazine of late. There is a huge wave of new media money flooding into the media market. And, the graphic in Wired Magazine was very telling for sure, with $500M going for Vice Media and another $96.5M for Buzz Feed. That’s a lot of money for digital media.

Additionally, Roman Mars, was interviewed in a recent Wired Magazine article about podcasting, and he stated that radio needs a “Tune Up.”  Why? Well, he says, radio used to corner the market back in the day on being close to it’s listeners.” “Listening to NPR became the definition of who you were.”

People and families literally used to gather around their radios to get their news and listen to programs. Those days are far gone, I am afraid to say.

But, podcasting is taking up a growing niche in the news market. It’s not a new technology. And, Mars explains, “There hasn’t been a real spike in podcasts’ popularity so much as long, steady growth in listenership. Mars continues, “But there is a moment happening right now.”   “One piece of that is Serial, which is clearly doing something big and different. Another piece is that Ira Glass was on The Tonight Show and he was talking about podcasts. That’s huge.” And, Roman Mars is building a podcasting Empire, says Wired Magazine!

This niche communications medium is about to explode because of the portability of all our devices today, and how the radio broadcasting and traditional media world must adapt or die as they  continue their downward spiral.

What Roman Mars talks about is that podcasting is so much more personal and intensely close for listeners. It becomes very personal, Mars says. “Podcast listeners are also a very dedicated bunch, and the radio stations just have not gotten it.”  One podcast listener is like having 10,000 listeners on an average quarterly hour (AQH) listenership, because if it is a great podcast they will share it with their friends.

Everyone is multitasking today. And, podcasts are perfectly suited to people having their attention divided in so many different ways, simultaneously. People typically listen to podcasts by themselves, often with ear buds. We are right there, in their ears talking to them.

We’re in a world now where you have something to do at all time, whether it’s commuting on a train, bus or washing dishes and doing laundry or weed whacking the yard. Podcasting is more accessible, more portable.

Podcasts are available all the time, on demand anywhere, 24/365. Podcasts are perfectly oriented for the modern world, you can wash your car to it.

In total, all the new small digital operations have created nearly 2,000 out of the 5,000 full-time editorial jobs PEW identified, and they represent a growing and increasingly important part of a shifting media ecosystem.

Here’s what they’re like: They are young and lean businesses, close to home and a bit more than 50% are opting to run as nonprofits.

Why? Well, refer to the numbers, as I stated before about the new wave of money for digital media… it’s coming from philanthropic organizations, where  61% of the nonprofit news organizations surveyed by Pew Research began with a large start-up grant from these organizations.

As a result of my reading and the direction traditional media has taken (about 11,000 newspaper newsroom jobs were lost as a result of the economic recession), I want to tell you about a new native digital business. I am advising on their digital strategy, and writing for their projects.

Flatlands Ausanga Font medium size image

Enter Podcasting and Flatlands Avenue Productions, LLC.  Please subscribe to them via email, after learning more about their business, the team and their services.

In short, Rita Rich is a great podcast producer, who has partnered with a woman named Debra Grobman. Both used were in radio. Debra is in LA and Rita is in the DC metro area, like myself. And, she has a legal representative in Michigan.

Rita Final Bio She is, and well in fact all of us are shifting how we do news and media outreach to help others tell their story. More intimately, for sure. And, Rita is good at it. She is the voice of Patriot-Made Audio and Canadian Made Audio.

They are fun ladies and have told a lot of stories and experience to share. Does your business have a podcast? Do you need a story told? Consider trying a different medium with far greater reach. You should consider the Debra Final Bioinformation I’ve shared today and how much the media and public relations world has changed.

Here is Flatland’s Pitch Deck for any business, government agency, media entity, PR firm, schools, churches or non profits who might be interested in doing a podcast or audio story.

I believe in their venture because they are-we all are reinventing how business gets done and how to reach more people. with less cost.

If you have a few minutes, please listen to a few recent stories from Flatlands Avenue Productions and their newest client, Romy Gingras and her brand new podcast series,The Bonfires of Social Enterprise. And, of course, Flatland’s has other projects with podcasts as well.

What are your thoughts about social enterprises helping to fix complex social problems?

What do you know or not know about Podcasting?  Let’s keep the conversation going!  Oh, and when you contact Rita, be sure to ask where their business name came from, it’s a great little story as well.

Many thanks for the work done by PEW,  who is Associate Director at the Pew Research Center’s Journalism Project, and  Wired Magazine from which I pulled some of the content to help me write this blog.

Great stuff don’t ya think!? :)  And, if you have a favorite podcast you listen to share it and tell me why you like it? What makes a good podcast would be another great blog post in the near future!

Is Your Creativity Dead?

March 16, 2015 Comments off

Let the Elephants RunI worked on a different blog today, it’s a project I participate in through Canadian Made Audio with a colleague of mine named Rita Rich.  This particular blog is about David Usher, and although I have not read his book, yet. I am going to buy it!

The reason being is that I do consider myself a creative sort. But, the older I’ve become, the more I’ve noticed that somewhere along the way I’ve lost or misplaced large portions of my innate creativity. Life seems to literally suck it out you and away from you. And, if you are TOO creative, well people think you are weird. Many of you may not know this but I actually oil paint. I love art. And, I have not painted in a very long, long time, or at least not regularly.  For some reason I do not feed this side of me, the side which is the core of who I am, quite frankly. I always have to get the chores or other tasks done first.

So, I wrote this blog and well David is many things, a musician, artist, author, public speaker, business entrepreneur and activist.  He is also British-born Canadian, and CanadianMade Audio producer Rita Rich talks with David about his new best-selling book, Let The Elephants Run.  Listen to her interview with him here.  I am inspired!   

Well, David’s new best-selling book is all about letting our creative pink elephants run wild. Let the Elephants Songs From The Last Day On EarthRun shows us how to reignite creativity whether in the head office, the home office or the artist’s studio.  He says in this latest podcast interview with Rita Rich, that in today’s world with the Internet, five people are likely working on the very same idea you are, at the same time.  But, it’s not so important about being the first to come up with a creative idea anymore, but in fact, being able to deliver that creative idea.

It seems that our day to day lives tends to stifle all the creativity out of us. But, David believes creativity is in our DNA; it’s in everyone, not just the one in the creative art class. We all start our lives as very creative beings, but for many that spark becomes lost over time. How do we jump-start our creative process as adults? What does it means to be a creative person? How do we follow through with our ideas and turn them into tangible outcomes?

Read more about David Usher, his book, his music, and his business here at www.canadianmadeaudio.com

AP Style for States Abbreviations

March 14, 2015 Comments off

We live in a rapid news “now” world., What I am seeing, as we move away from traditional media outreach through the use of press releases is that people are forgetting AP style formatting. There is indeed a science and art behind writing a press release. Below is a list of AP Style State abbreviations. So, I am providing a reference for those who may be interested.

Note: AP Style state abbreviations differ from their corresponding US Postal Service abbreviations, are in parentheses.

  • Ala. (AL) — for Alabama
  • Alaska (AK) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Ariz. (AZ) — for Arizona
  • Ark. (AR) — for Arkansas
  • Calif. (CA) — for California
  • Colo. (CO) — for Colorado
  • Conn. (CT) — for Connecticut
  • Del. (DE) — for Delaware
  • Fla. (FL) — for Florida
  • Ga. (GA) — for Georgia
  • Hawaii (HI) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Idaho (ID) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Ill. (IL) — for Illinois
  • Ind. (IN) — for Indiana
  • Iowa (IA) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Kan. (KS) — for Kansas
  • Ky. (KY) — for Kentucky
  • La. (LA) — for Louisiana
  • Maine (ME) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Md. (MD) — for Maryland
  • Mass. (MA) — for Massachusetts
  • Mich (MI) — for Michigan
  • Minn. (MN) — for Minnesota
  • Miss. (MS) — for Mississippi
  • Mo. (MO) — for Missouri
  • Mont. (MT) — for Montana
  • Neb. (NE) — for Nebraska
  • Nev. (NV) — for Nevada
  • N.H. (NH) — for New Hampshire
  • N.J. (NJ) — for New Jersey
  • N.M. (NM) — for New Mexico
  • N.Y. (NY) — for New York
  • N.C. (NC) — for North Carolina
  • N.D. (ND) — for North Dakota
  • Ohio (OH) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Okla. (OK) — for Oklahoma
  • Ore. (OR) — for Oregon
  • Pa. (PA) — for Pennsylvania
  • R.I. (RI) — for Rhode Island
  • S.C. (SC) — for South Carolina
  • S.D. (SD) — for South Dakota
  • Tenn. (TN) — for Tennessee
  • Texas (TX) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Utah (UT) — this state is not abbreviated in text
  • Vt. (VT) — for Vermont
  • Va. (VA) — for Virginia
  • Wash. (WA) — for Washington
  • W. Va. (WV) — for West Virginia
  • Wis. (WI) — for Wisconsin
  • Wyo. (WY) — for Wyoming
  • Also: District of Columbia (DC)

Here’s an example of how to abbreviate a state in a sentence using AP style:

In Detroit, Mich., the weather today is sunny and warm. 

And, here is how to use a city (and state) in the dateline.

DETROIT, March 14, 2015 –

Remember that, in datelines, the city name is in all capital letters. If necessary, follow it with the state abbreviation –– not the U.S. postal code.(For example: KANSAS CITY, Kan. or KANSAS CITY, Mo.)

However, these states are always spelled out: Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Ohio, Texas and Utah.

The following list are US domestic cities that stand alone, with no state abbreviation.

ATLANTA,  BALTIMORE,  BOSTON, CHICAGO,  CINCINNATI,  CLEVELAND, DALLAS,

DENVER,  DETROIT, HONOLULU, HOUSTON,  INDIANAPOLIS,  LAS VEGAS,  LOS ANGELES 

MIAMI,  MILWAUKEE, MINNEAPOLIS,  NEW ORLEANS,  NEW YORK,

OKLAHOMA CITY,  PHILADELPHIA,  PHOENIX,  PITTSBURGH,

ST. LOUIS,  SALT LAKE CITY,  SAN ANTONIO,  SAN DIEGO,  SAN FRANCISCO,  SEATTLE,

WASHINGTON

*On a regional level, additional cities may stand alone should the newspaper staff decide so.

“Can We Live on USA Made Only?” Interview

September 30, 2014 Comments off
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