moda vivendi

I'm just talking to myself. We do that sometimes, me and myself.


1 Comment

Things to remember when posting for your business

**Please note: this was first posted over on theBrewRoom blog.  You can check out the full post (and more) there!

Inspired by a list published on AdAge.com by Simon Dumenco, “9 Media Things That Should Be Immediately Regulated,” I hereby give you my list of 7 Things That Should Be Immediately Regulated When Posting For Your Small Business (or any sized business for that matter) on social media accounts.  Posting for your business can be tricky to navigate at first, but it gets easier with practice (and remembering these reminders).  Please note: there is no particular order because these are all important.  Well, except for No. 1.  That’s pretty important.

5. Henceforth, your posts shall only contain one punctuation character in a row.  I get that you’re excited, but use your words, not your exclamation points.  Exception: ellipses…

4. Henceforth, you shall not ramble.  The ratio of number of characters per post to percent of increased engagement varies between Ragan, Short Stack, and Linchpin SEO infographics, but they all will tell you that posts clocking in around 100-150 characters (3 lines of a Facebook update) see more interactions on Facebook.  Similarly, about 80-100 characters are ideal for a tweet.

3. Henceforth, you shall not post willy-nilly.  Everyone (yes, everyone) will tell you to make a schedule of posts and stick to it.  It’ll keep you organized, keep you on point, and ensure that you post essential messages without becoming overbearing (and annoying).

2. Henceforth, if you must automate posts, know who/what/where/when.  Don’t be the person tweeting your two-for-one BBQ Nite when something devastating (or joyful, but mostly devistating) happens.  Make sure you know what’s going where and when.  Try your best to make a quick change should you need to.

1. Henceforth, you shall be interested in others.  As John of YaJagoff will tell you, social media is losing the “social” aspect.  He’ll also tell you that you can get more people interested in you by showing interest in them.  Think about the last time you were faced to endure time with a “me” person.  It’s a turn-off, yeah?  Don’t be that person online.


Leave a comment

Types of people you see at a concert

Last night, I was treated to one of America’s favorite past-time: a punk-pop concert.  I had the pleasure of witnessing all sorts of characters.  And they weren’t even with the band!

You will see…

The Girl Who Insists on Flinging Her Arms Wildly in the Air.  This girl is probably blissfully unaware of just how entertaining she is.  Along with the arms, you’ll also be treated to foot-stomping, forceful hair-shaking, and lots of woo-ing.  I’m all for you having a good time, but I’m pretty sure you just slapped the guy next to you who hasn’t washed his hair since the band went on hiatus in 2008.

Coinciding with the Girl Who Insists on Flinging Her Arms Wildly in the Air is the male equivalent.  He’s a little more spasmodic, a little less drunk, and not as entertaining.  Chances are, you won’t be able to place a bet on whether or not he’ll slap his significant other.  Pro tip: you can bet on the girls; odds are you’ll some unintentional (and intentional) contact.

The Guy with the Knit Hat.  Sir, do you realize it’s 80 degrees outside?  I’m sure you do, as you’re wearing a t-shirt, shorts/rolled-up jeans, and flip flops.  So please explain to me the knit slouchy hat.  Have you, too, given up washing your hair?

The Girl/Guy with the Phone.  This is probably the single most annoying person you could encounter.  I’ll endure 1,000 Arm Flinging Girls if it means my eyes aren’t assaulted by bright flashes of someone’s phone every minute, checking the latest on Facebook and Instagram.

The Girls Who Talk the Whole Time.  This usually coincides with the Girl with the Phone.  I’m sorry someone is playing music over your conversation.


9 Comments

I blogged in the @ThePintester Movement!

If you don’t know who The Pintester is (aka Sonja Foust) you are missing out.  Go and read her blog, yes her entire blog, right now.  I’ll wait.  She started this crazy idea for everyone to be an honorary pintester and actually DO something that we’ve been saving for “someday” for too long.  So here we are.  You can read more about The Pintester Movement here, The Pintester Movement: Craft ALL The Things.

I wasn’t sure what to do.  In the spirit of The Pintester, I kind of wanted to do something that would go up in flames (I mean figuratively) and really give you guys a laugh.  In actuality, we got literal flames (I mean literally).  I’ve done pins that worked and that didn’t work, but didn’t get documentation.  It was back to the drawing board.  Originally, I was going to test the 7 Days To Skinny Jeans pin, but we were out of yogurt, didn’t have almond milk, and I decided that the idea of oatmeal in a smoothie didn’t appeal to me after all.

Next, I thought I love wrap bracelets for summer, adore Chan Luu, but can’t afford Chan Luu, so I’ll do a wrap bracelet.  This one, in particular.

Image via ring-things.com

But I got about this far before I realized that the instructions tell you to make sure your thread goes through your beads TWICE for a reason.  This was soon abandoned.

2

My first (documented) pin-fail.

So I moved along to this one, which was still a kitschy-crafty, bracelet-y thing.

Image via honestlywtf.com

I assembled the necessary materials (minus a needle, didn’t think this was THAT necessary) and was happy to note that no beads were required.  I substituted whatever hemp-like cord I had for the “Chinese knotting cord” that was called for.  Hey, The Pintester does this all the time; I was just following her school of thought.  I decided to use these pendant disks that I’ve had for ages.  The one I picked said “Harmony” because after the first failed attempt at a bracelet, I needed more of that.

And it started out pretty smoothly.  In all my art classes and jewelry making ventures in the past, I’ve never learned the art of “macrame,” so I made up a fun song to remember which thread was going over, which was going under, and which one I was supposed to use.  It got a little wonky toward the end of the strand; I think I was so engrossed in my song that I forgot to remember which side of the thread I was supposed to be working.  Or to count knots so both side would be the same.  That’s okay, it’s handmade; it isn’t supposed to be perfect.

Could be worse..

Could be worse..

I finished the other side with less wonkiness.  Got a little confused on the instructions for the sliding closure, but it was just using a piece of scrap cord to make a few more macrame “stitches” to hold both sides together.  Why the directions couldn’t have said that up front is beyond me.

Macrame closure

Macrame closure

The instructions also said to weave the loose ends into the bracelet, for extra security, using a pair of pliers to pull the needle through the cord.  I passed on that part.  I’m not saying I’m not graceful, but if there is the possibility of breaking, stabbing, maiming, or otherwise harming myself, there’s a good chance it’ll happen.

The instructions also said to seal the ends with a flame.  I think the rational part of my brain was still laughing from the suggestion of using pliers to pull a large needle through the cord to tell the part of my brain that thought, “Well, I didn’t sew up the ends, so sure, let’s ignite,” that it really wasn’t a brilliant idea.  Here’s where the literal flames come in.  Sorry, no picture of that.  I decided that Gorilla Glue was just as good; I’ve used Gorilla Glue and staples to hold sandals together, just the glue will be fine for this.

Ta-da!

Ta-da!

So there you have it.  I blogged in The Pintester Movement.  Not a “crash and burn” fail, but not a soaring success either.  I proclaim this pin do-able, with attention to fire retardant-ness.

http://pintester.com/2013/05/the-pintester-movement-craft-all-the-things


5 Comments

5 Reasons You Hate Your Job (Redux)

I’d like to preface this by saying I like my job about as much as the next person.  Usually I’m doing something that I think is helping the company.  I have worth!  I have talent!  I have stress-relief balls all over my desk! (My favorites are a light bulb and a penguin.)  But this “article” that I read is just begging to be satirized.  It’s called “5 Reasons You Hate Your Job.”  I’d tell you to go and read the full thing here, but let me break it down for you.

You’re Unorganized

I’m proud of my organizational skills.  Okay, my desk at home looks like a hoarder and a pack rat got together and threw up all over it, but in the grand scheme of things, it could be worse.  And at work, I’m the best, most color-coded, Type A, Post-It-Noted person in the office.

So really, maybe I’m too organized.  There’s no clutter to make me crazy so I am crazy in other ways.

You’re Stressed

Reason number two is because “I’m stressed.”  Well, yeah, of course.  When you are told to re-do something 10 times and it turns out that Version 1.0 is the winning choice, or they ask you to do something 10 times and your contributions still aren’t implemented, you tend to get a little frustrated.

You’re Not Taking Care of Your Body

Actually, I’m training for a half marathon.  If I want to eat a cookie, I’m eating that cookie.  Next!

You Don’t Like Your Colleagues

The author suggests that I understand that they have personal lives and stresses in those personal lives, just like me.  Okay, I understand that for them, but why don’t they understand that for me!?  I don’t want to be at work while you stand around and eat your cookie.  Do that at home, not on my time.  I eat my cookies at home after I train for a marathon.  See, I’m understanding.

Your Finances Aren’t In Order

That’s why I have a job..to make money.  So I’d say my finances are getting in order.  They aren’t as tidy as my organizational skills, but I balance my check book.

I’d like to offer my own 5 Reasons You Hate Your Job:

  1. You’re Given Too Much Work and Not Enough Money (Look, that kills Reason 1, 2, and 5)
  2. You Don’t Like Your Colleagues (That one was pretty spot-on the first time around)
  3. Your Business Casual Clothes are too Binding (Casual Friday should be Casual Every Day That You Have to Put On Real Pants Day)
  4. You Have to Wake up Ridiculously Early (I’m a morning person, but not a crack-of-dawn, before-the-birds-are-chirping person)
  5. There Isn’t Enough Coffee or Whoever Made the Coffee Today Must Have Put Ashes in It (It isn’t that hard people. I know I was a barista, but come on, this is a home-brew machine, it doesn’t say “Go gather a unicorn’s tears and fill the water reservoir with them” on the instruction booklet)

And sometimes there are days when you only have 1 Reason You Love Your Job:

  1. Your Chair Swivels


Leave a comment

The kids aren’t alright

Disclaimer: I came across this draft today.  It was started last summer.  I’ll do my best to change where it says “this summer,” but some of them may slip through. Apologies!

There are times when I sit here and say, “My childhood wasn’t that long ago, I have no right to say anything about ‘kids these days'” and then there are times when it feels like an eternity.  This summer has been Last Summer was one of those times when it’s felt like an eternity.  Last summer, Two summers ago, while training for a marathon, I’d run by a new building development.  It was just gravel at the time, though, so I didn’t really think anything of it.  Well, aside from the fact that the location of said development is in the middle of a once-heavily wooded area along a narrow, windy back road that connects two areas of our township.  This summer Last summer, though, as I was running along, buildings had sprung up.  And I noticed something unusual: there were no yards.  Granted, those cookie-cutter housing plans are pretty squashed together (gotta maximize that ROI), but there was about 5 feet of “yard” before the back dropped off.  Literally.

5 feet and then GONE.

What parent would allow their child to play in an area like that, let alone keep purchasing soccer balls to be offered up to the winds of fate that always carry balls away.  When I was a kid and a ball went into the woods behind my house, we had to go searching for it.  That usually was the best part because we got to go into the woods.  But really, what parent would say, “Okay, you lost it, go find it.  Just let me get the repelling ropes first”?

Allow me to shake my cane for a moment.. Kids these days just sit inside and play on their computer or their X-Box 5050 or whatever they’re called.  I remember being younger and my parents and my neighbors’ parents specifically saying “Don’t come home until it’s dark.”  Some of my best memories are of games that we made up, like swinging on the swing set, trying to kick a soft ball that was thrown at us, and seeing if we can kick it on the deck (and if it landed in my mother’s garden, how quickly we could get it out unseen).  Or having a wedding ceremony so the boy next door could marry the tree in his front yard (not quite sure what happened to that fellow or why our parents didn’t institutionalize us for that one).  Or biking along the trails and getting your tires stuck in dirt bike ruts.  I have some good scars from being outside.

There’s just something I don’t understand about developing and marketing family homes in a place that isn’t conducive to family life.

It’s pretty, but there is a big drop-off where dirt meets trees. That tree line is actually quite a few yards away.


2 Comments

Where is the love

Today I powered up Twitter to a see a feed full of tweets about Burger King’s twitter account being hacked.  A picture says a thousand words, so I’ll give you two:

McBurgerKing

McBurgerKing

McBurgerKing's Twitter Feed

McBurgerKing’s Twitter Feed

If you’re a high schooler, I’m sure you find this insanely hilarious.  I find it mildly entertaining simply because of the line “The Whopper Flopped.”  But that’s about where the humor ends.  Why is hacking accounts becoming so prevalent?  It’s like the new thing to do now that the secret about bath salts is out.  People hacking banks accounts, a business’s Twitter feed, even a knitting forum I have heard of has been compromised recently, resulting in stored information becoming vulnerable.

Is someone that bored they say, “I’m going to wreak havoc today”?  There are probably scores of people who are in really hot water from the compromised banking systems.  People at Burger King who are probably ready to jump off the building because of this PR nightmare that someone caused for giggles.  A knitter who’s identity got stolen from someone hacking a knitting forum?  Really?

Where is the desire to be a decent human being, to want to bring good into the world instead of breeding negatives?  I don’t understand how there are people out there working really hard to make a difference for the better yet someone is content to sit behind their computer and cause destruction like this.  Perhaps it is because my mind doesn’t function in a criminal way, but where do people get these ideas?  I understand that if someone is desperate enough, they’ll do anything to get what they want, be it money or a political message.  But where is the political message in the Burger King account.  I scrolled through some recent tweets and it just appears that someone is having a field day being ridiculous; I see no political content.  And it isn’t like there is a monetary amount to be gained from this directly in finding classified account information.  I just want to know: where is the love (and compassion)?

Although if this turns out to be a crazy marketing strategy for BK, great job; you succeeded in getting people to talk about your brand.  If not, get a job.


Leave a comment

What my professional personal ad would say

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to branding.  When I say branding, I mean marketing and branding, not the thing you do with cattle and other property.  If a company wanted to brand me, I think I’d run away, but it depends how good the benefits package is.  I’d really like to market myself in order to either increase the likelihood of being hired in a full-time capacity.  (Shameless plug: if you know of someone in the Pittsburgh area who is looking for a copywriter, I’m your gal.)

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, here’s what my professional personal ad would say about me.  I have a few options, so let me know which is best and I’ll take out a Craigslist ad in the help wanted section. Or, put it on LinkedIn.  That’s probably a better channel..

23, eager to learn, interested in writing, baking, coffee, and long walks between my desk and the copier. Looking for someone to fund my Post-It habit.

Young candidate seeks the right company. Me: copywriter, designer, blogger. Familiar with InDesign and social media advertising. You: able to provide me with a cubicle, a working computer, and things you need me to do. Not afraid to play on a company softball team (hand-eye coordination needs work first).

Advertising hopeful looking for the right company to unleash my creativity on the world. Will work for Starbucks gift cards and Nutella.