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Sh*t.. that’s online for life

It’s been 14 years since the start of Myspace and we still can’t get this social media thing right.

In 2003, Myspace changed the way the world communicated with each other. Suddenly, I’m capable of instantly sharing my awesome thoughts with Myspace friends around the world. One year later, Facebook is introduced with Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat soon to follow. Now, we use social for everthing from personal communication to building professional networks, yet we still make the same six mistakes online that can hinder our PR careers.

Take a look at a few examples:

  1. Posting identical content across all platforms. If you post the same exact thing across all platforms you’ll come across as mono-toned to your followers.
  2. Crossing the line. It’s important to remember that everything posted online stays online forever. Not everything is worth posting online and not every joke is worth telling.
  3. Failing to prepare. Too many people and businesses today use their newly made social media platforms to spam followers with poorly timed content. Without a set posting strategy, followers will wonder when to tune in for new content.
  4. Failing to tell a story. Don’t delegate the social media responsibilities to an intern that doesn’t know the company culture. The most successful social media pages are the ones that tell a story.
  5. Being anti-social. What’s the point of starting a social media page if you’re not going to engage with others through your platforms. You are either interacting with others and build relationships or you get left behind.
  6. Not knowing your audience. Many people and organizations don’t know who their target audience is. If you don’t know your audience then you’re left posting blindly wasting time and resources.

Chances are you more you could relate to more than one of these mistakes. If so, check out these six steps you can take to help counter these common mistakes.

  1. Mix it up. Come up with different headlines, hashtags and even filters use between platforms. Learn to use each platform’s strength to maximize your reach.
  2. Never post in a hurry or because of emotion.  Always double check what you post and make certain you are posting without any ill intentions. As Don Williams of Ragan.com said, “It takes a lifetime to build a reputation, yet mere seconds to destroy one.”
  3. Create a content calendar. A good content calendar includes links, pictures, sources and research information. This will help you stay ahead of the game in terms of content while keeping the creative juices flowing when you’re in a rut.
  4. Businesses should look to hire people that are familiar with the company’s culture to work in social media. Individuals should find their voice and use that as the tone of their story.
  5. This one is simple. Interact with your followers across all platforms and remember to respond to questions in a timely manner.
  6. Do your research ahead of time to identify your target audience and identify key methods to reach them.

A well maintained social media presence will tell your story and give your audience a reason to follow your page. Remember these six simple solutions the next time you’re thinking about posting on our social media page, you might just save yourself from embarrassment.

 

Timing is everything

Remember when Colin Kaepernick kneeled during the national anthem of a football game? What started as Kaepernick’s way to speak out against social injustice and police brutality quickly turned into a national debate whether Kaepernick was anti-American.

The next day, questions regarding Kaepernick’s respect towards military and law enforcement began to rise. The more popular the act became, the more disrespect was thrown Kaepernick’s way. 

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So, how could something intended to be meaningful become so misunderstood?

To start, most people disapproved of Kaepernick’s decision to protest during the national anthem. Calling it “disrespectful” and “insulting” to military personnel. Others disliked the fact the 49ers quarterback held his protest near popular military base Camp Pendelton, and that the Chargers were holding their annual “Salute to the Military” night. Most, however, only found the protest an issue because of the upcoming 15th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

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As a professional athlete, Kaepernick is given a grand stage to express his values and opinions. His decision to protest during a nationally televised game was smart for the sake of gaining attention from the media, but the timing of his protest created an alternate story bigger than his cause.

Let’s compare Kaepernick’s protest to another recent protest by athletes.

In 2014, phone call recordings were released, exposing former owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, Donald Sterling, of making racist remarks. The athletes on the Clippers took it amongst themselves to hold a silent protest against Sterling. The Clippers gathered at center court to remove their warm-up shirts and replaced them with inside-out red shooting shirts that did not have the Clippers logo.

The protest picked up immediate coverage and gained support from basketball legends around the league. Even President Barack Obama had a few choice words for Mr. Sterling.

What made the Clippers’ protest more successful compared to Kaepernick’s goes back to the timing. Kaepernick held a protest during the national anthem, consequently forcing viewers to pick between patriotism and social justice. The Clippers spoke out during their warm-ups and post-game interviews. The silent protest allowed the team to express their voice without competing against other variables, like the national anthem. This allowed the Clippers to gain instant support and why their message was not taken out of context.

To recap, we learned from Kaepernick’s decision to kneel during the national anthem that timing is critical to issue awareness. Had he decided to kneel before the anthem or simply speak out during the post-game interview, maybe his protest wouldn’t have been despised. So the next time you’re thinking about raising awareness of an issue you hold dear to your heart, remember to take your timing into account.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UFC superstar Conor McGregor is killing the public relations game

Love him or hate him, you can’t help but talk about him.

If you haven’t heard of UFC Lightweight champion Conor Mcgregor from his many twitter rants chances are you’ve seen him appear on your favorite talk show.

Just last night McGregor appeared in front of 5,000 fans and pay-per-view television, but he didn’t fight, he talked. Last night “The Notorious” McGregor held an exclusive interview inside Trafford Park that was also streamed live the same time UFC Dever was being held.

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The night started out in true “Mystic Mac” fashion, a pre-show Instagram post saying, “Fuck the UFC. Fuck Floyd. Fuck boxing. Fuck the WWE. Fuck Hollywood. And fuck you to pay me.” During the one hour interview with MMAJunkie.com’s, Ariel Helwani, McGregor elaborated on his relationship with the UFC, his plans to complete the Diaz trilogy and the possible super-fight againt Floyd “Money” Mayweather.

In response to how the relationship between him and the UFC has been since being stripped of his featherweight belt, McGregor stated that he and Dana are still on good terms. “Business is business and they’ve got to create [business],” he stated. “But don’t get me wrong. Sign me up to fight any of those bum featherweights and they won’t show up,” the champ added.

When asked about a trilogy match against Nate Diaz McGregor quickly responded, “I’ll get to Nate don’t get me wrong. Me and Nate will throw down again 100 percent.” “And I imagine it would be for the lightweight world title,” he added.

And when the question about his rumored super fight against Mayweather finally came McGregor shot right up in his seat and told Helwani, “Look, there are a lot of steps to get the fight done, but it’s the fight to make. It’s the fight that people want. It’s the fight that I want.” “I believe it will happen by the end of this year or early next year,” McGregor announced. McGregor also made clear he believes his fight against Mayweather could gross nearly a billion dollars.

There’s no denying the fact McGregor has that “it” factor that just makes people superstars, but he’s also one of the best at strategical communication.

By calling out the UFC, Mayweather, the WWE, and everyone else on social media, McGregor instantly engaged with thousands of UFC, boxing, and WWE fans before his interview had even started.

I know what you’re thinking: twitter rants happen every day. But this isn’t just another tweet by McGregor. As a mixed martial arts fighter, McGregor technically works for himself and his value increasing along with his brand. So, not only is he competing with his employer by promoting a separate event the same time the UFC was holding a fight card, but he’s using social media to increase his pay-per-view numbers and give himself leverage over the UFC.

If McGregor can prove his likeness will attract thousands to watch him on television, even just to see him speak, he can use that as a negotiating tactic during his next contract with the UFC. Simply put, if he’s there people will watch.

This time he brought in the lucrative world of boxing into the mix. After UFC 205, McGregor accomplished his grandest dreams. And seemingly untouched from his title fight against Eddie Alvarez, McGregor was left searching for quality opponents. McGregor is never shy to talk about money which explains his idea to make a super-fight against the undefeated Mayweather.

Some people (me) will tune in to whatever McGregor does just to hear what crazy antics come out of his mouth. Others don’t think so highly of the Irishman and would prefer he fade into the background. But that’s okay, because love or hate him, you can’t stop talking about “The Notorious” Conor McGregor.

Now your personality might not be as rash as McGregor’s but you can still learn a lot from how he strategically gains attention and builds his brand. From calling out opponents and businesses just moments before a televised interview to the way he speaks his truth in person.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a fan of his or not, you know who he is, and you definitely know his brand.

Apple refuses FBI’s requests to create new hacking software

Apple isn’t playing around when it comes to customer security.

According to Clare Lane, contributor to PRDaily.com, Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, is eager to protect his customer’s privacy after he publically rejected the FBI’s request for the technology company to create new hacking software. Software designed to bypass the security of an iPhone that had belonged to one of the San Bernadino attackers. Considering the recent issues in hacking, Cook believes the software would do more harm than good, especially in the wrong hands. This is a big no for Apple and a reason as to why the company is eager to set up a legal battle against the FBI to protect its customers.

Tim Cook, after Macworld Expo 2009 keynote
Image by Valery Marchive via Flickr.com

Refusing to comply with the FBI is no small matter. Apple’s decision will likely severely impact the business in one of two ways. Consumers may find Cook’s decision to me anti-American or in support of terrorism. This would negatively affect sales of Apple products
decreasing the company’s value and stock price. On the other hand, consumers might appreciate Cook’s commitment to protecting customer privacy resulting in an increase in sales and rise in share prices.

The issue we are facing with technology and privacy is that the two have doomed us by combining together. People now carry their most sensitive information stored on their phones: passwords, contact info, electronic bank cards and more. Advances in technology make it easier for programmers to develop software capable of bypassing the passcodes and fingerprint scans on iPhones. To counter attackers Apple has created its “bug bounty program,” paying select hackers up to $20,000 to find weaknesses in Apple’s security software. This allows Apple to solve problems before they become serious issues created by dangerous hackers. The only issue is the black market pays considerably more money for unsolvable hacks than Apple.

I appreciate Cook’s commitment to his customers and believe his actions are honorable. However, I believe Apple and the FBI need to sit down and create a solution that allows the FBI to obtain the information needed from the phone without putting millions at risk.

Punches, kicks and SEO tools?

Hello and welcome to my first blog post. My name is Eddie Ayala, I like to think of myself as a strong communicator. I am interested in the sports industry and hope to start a career in social media and athlete marketing after college.

In four years at the University of Oregon I have attended some of the most exciting games in college sports. I even worked some these games, like the Oregon vs. Arizona game, as a Diamond Duck intern for the UO athletic department. As an intern, I assisted with in-game promotions and community relations.

I am currently assisting Midtown MMA, Eugene’s best mixed martial arts promotion, with social media and public relations. Since starting with Midtown I have helped the organization gain exposure on third party blogs and increased the social media reach by 10,000 engagements.

Eugene has a booming group of young, up and coming athletes that dream of becoming professionals in the future. My goal for this blog is to use the experience and knowledge to help young athletes better market themselves to increase their overall exposure. Each week I will update the blog with posts aimed at educating my audience about how they can effectively use the strategies professionals use today to gain maximum exposure.

 

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