Hot Chicks, Guns and “Bad Words” Sell Merchandise!

By: Cody J. Giordano

Gary Vaynerchuk is a media expert. Vaynerchuk recently said in a Facebook video that he does not want to make a conventional video. He would rather make something people enjoy watching with cues, such as logos and objects or merchandise within those commercials. All forms of advertising have a place, but newspapers and inkblots, alone, will not cut it in our technology-driven society. Advertising styles have changed dramatically.

Black Rifle Coffee Company does an amazing job at selling products without directly advertising them. The veteran-owned and operated company makes funny and outrageous videos on YouTube and Facebook. The videos depict attractive women (hot chicks), guns, extreme sports, nice cars and everything else guys, like me, can’t get enough of. Below are three videos from BRCC.

John Willis, the owner of Special Operations Equipment (SOE) and James Yeager, the “MFCEO” of Tactical Response, have gotten famous by being unapologetic business owners. SOE makes gear like gun belts, chest rigs, rifle slings, etc. Tactical Response is a firearms-fighting school. Both Yeager and Willis speak their mind. When someone doesn’t agree with them, they will fan the flames. This gets the customer fired up. That customer then runs to forums and social media outlets to complain about either businessman. This draws supporters, like myself, to defend Willis and/or Yeager. Willis says that this model works because it is like a traffic jam. Everyone stops to look at the car with a flat tire. This slows down traffic, and more people see the flat tire (his name). The people then flock to his page by the hundreds to buy products. Yeager uses this model to get new students to sign up for classes at Tactical Response. They call this firing customers. By not wasting time on one bad customer, they can help two or three good ones. Both can be seen on YouTube and Facebook doing this very well.

Times have changes, and so have advertising styles. Rather than try to convince you why their product is better or tell you all about their products/services, they give you entertaining content that has subtle hints towards their business.

The Baby Boomers vs. The Millenials

If you are a young person sitting at a family event and happen to be texting your best friend about the next time you want to hang out, you may have been told by your grandmother to get off your phone and that you are becoming antisocial. It may not have happened to you, but it sure has happened to me.

What I do not think the generations before us understand is that communication is evolving with society. They see our ways of communicating with each other as unnecessary or inefficient. However, I feel that our generations have similar ways of communicating. Past generations would write letters to friends that lived farther away because they had no way of communicating with them otherwise. Heck, they would even use telephones to call them. The combination of these sound fairly familiar to me. I see the combination as a cell phone. The letters are the equivalent to texts, and the calls are pretty obvious. A major difference between the two generations would be having a landline vs. having a cell phone. I know my grandmother has a landline, but I do not.

Also, each generation has their own lingo. With each generation comes new words. For our generation words like “swag” and “twerk” have formed, but the older generations look down on us for them. I am not saying I myself am proud of these words, but they also formed words like “hickey” and “fuzz”, which means police. These words are also not the most intelligent, and I bet the generation before the baby boomers found this lingo unnecessary. It is like a never ending cycle.

Seth Sharpe

 

Is communication becoming too informal?

Communication. “Means of connection between people or places, in particular.” Many different categories of communication are used including verbal, non-verbal and written. Communication is very powerful as it connects one another and it helps build relationships but there should be a balance of how much we use of each category, we should try to get comfortable with all of them and continue to improve our communication styles. Written communication has definitely increased over the years and is the major form of communication today. Text messages, emails, and social networks are the easy, popular ways of communicating with one another. So, are these things contributing to communication becoming too informal?

We tend to be more open, speak our mind and even say things in written form that we would not say in a verbal conversation. We also use slang language and acronyms and become so used to it that we start to forget how to use formal communication. Social media has become very important in our lives today. It gives the ability to connect with people whom are far away, but ironically it also separates us from the people who are close. We get so caught up with looking at what others are doing, what they share, how many likes we receive, that we tend to pay less attention to the people we have close. Our face to face conversations diminish and we don’t feel as confident and comfortable communicating verbally. People become so involved in their virtual lives and spend less time in their actual lives. 

Laura Lopez

Marketing Through Blogging

5 Minute Read

Blogs, Blogs, Blogs… They are everywhere and you may not even realize it. Blogs are the marketing tool of the time and blogs are giving newspapers and radio advertising a serious run for their money. In order for a company to effectively use blogs as a marketing tool, a company has to have a solid understanding of what social media means for businesses today and how they can utilize the social media world and blogging to benefit their long term strategy.

Blogging has broken out from the conventional blog hosting sites and is now on all of our social media platforms.  If the criteria for a blog is: regularly updated articles, one or more authors and typically focused content written in an informal or conversational style then blogs populate Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Pintrest and many other platforms. When you like and share an article or a post you are GVessentially marketing for someone and perpetuating a blog. Today, social media and the internet allow companies to have direct relationships with their consumers that were not possible in the past. Companies can now interact and engage easily with their consumers just as consumers can now easily engage with their favorite companies. This dynamic has some companies scratching their heads while it has other forward thinking companies developing strategies around it.

Two forward thinking companies I think that are effectively utilizing blogs as a marketing tool are Coca-cola and Gary Vaynerchuk with Vaynermedia. Both have set up an amazing web of blogs and social media content that keeps the attention of their consumers and maximizes interaction and impact.

Both companies realize that the use of blogs as a marketing tool is a long play. The effectiveness of blogs relies more on the quality of its content and the relational depth a company has with its readers than the number of followers alone. A good blog should not push sales, it should give value to the reader. Nobody wants to read blogs that are always pitching a sell to them. A reader wants value from the content in the form of entertainment or knowledge. Essentially a blog is a marketing expense that is used to give your customers value in the form of entertainment or knowledge. That sounds like an awful play but if you consider the blog as a relational investment in regards to the integrity of your consumer base then it makes sense. Effective blogs are relationship and trust builders. Gary Vaynerchuk once said, “If you give more than you take then you have leverage for life”.

CokeCoca-cola has positioned their blogs as a form of engagement and interaction while providing stories and product updates through their blog “Unbottled”. The content is not overwhelming or pushy and articles can be easily searched and found through filtering. Coca-cola wants to reach and keep the attention of as many consumers as possible in order to fabricate a lasting loyalty from them. Their focus is rooted in retention through attention and Coca-cola quickly cycles numerous pieces of content that are broadly appealing and shareable.

Gary Vaynerchuk is the CEO of Vaynermedia, a 600 employee media and strategy company that boasted over $100 million in revenue last year. He is a pioneer in the digital and social media world and an incredible entrepreneur to say the least. Gary started his career after he graduated college in 1999. He took over operations at his father’s wine company and increased the annual revenue from $3 million to $60 million annually through the use of an incredibly effective e-commerce and e-mail marketing program. He started one of the first online video blogs in 2006 called Wine Library and in 2009 he and his brother started Vaynermedia. Gary hustled his way toG.png the ability to put yourself in other people’s shoes and see what they want is the greatest gift anyone can have. With that gift all you have to do is deliver and Gary understands that today’s generations require interaction, online relationships and above all else… attention. The social media climate is driven by attention. That is why we have like buttons and share buttons. It is why we post pictures and stories for people to read and tell us how great our lives are. We crave attention and Gary is a deliverer of attention, value and motivation. Gary also blogs to maintain his personal brand as an industry leader. His blogs means more followers which result in credibility. Credibility sells books and authors get paid to speak. That type of notoriety can lead a company such as Vaynermedia which sells various media products and provides services such as social strategy and social media management to many fortune 500 companies.

As you can see blogs allow a company to be more up close and personal with their consumers than ever before. If a company understands what they want to achieve through blogging they can begin to develop a strategic plan and begin the long game strategy. The first step is to create shareable content that readers will find value in. Then listen and be empathetic to their needs and deliver to those needs. Interact and keep their attention and the number of followers will increase. If a company can remain consistent and present, then they will gain the trust and loyalty of their followers and that is the goal of any company or blogger.

-Brent Devers

A New Business Environment

2004 was a year in innovation that everyone should remember. This is the year that effected nearly every human being either directly, or indirectly. It is said as of 2010 “one out of every dozen people on the planet has a Facebook account” (Grossman, 2010). Whether you realized this transformation or not, it plays a vital role in our economy. Some of us love it, others hate it. I have heard it called a gold rush, networking tool, and the demise of humanity. Which side you choose to be on is your individual filter of reality.

Yes, it is one of the most used social networking sites in the world today. Facebook.com. Founded in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s owner is valued at “$55.9 billion dollars” (Wikipedia, 2017). The site works by allowing users to build profiles of anything that can assume an identity such as a person, pet, or business to name a few. Once the profiles are built, the user has now agreed to the privacy statements herein the agreement you accept for using the company’s service, which is social networking. In return for using this service, you agree to allow them to use certain aspects of your profile for marketing purposes, which is also a way that they make their money. Since nearly two billion have profiles, Facebook has a vast array of human assets that can spread viral content, making them one of the best ways to advertise in today’s economy.

The aspect of collectively networking so many people through a social platform that allows for individual personalization continues to drive growth and innovation throughout the technology community. This platform practice is a template for many to learn from and grow with

On the other side of the business websites, we have a local plastic engineering firm that makes their money from manufacturing goods rather than the internet. C&T Engineering, Incorporated was founded in 1986 and their practice is to provide tooling and engineering expertise. They may not be an internet minded company, but they do have a website with a dot com domain thus making them a company represented with an online presence.

After reviewing their webpage, the main objective of the site is to inform potential customers of their background, location, and capabilities. The site does not allow for individual personalization, but offers the ability to inquire about servicing a need in this industry of tooling and engineering.

In comparison, both web pages have dot com domains and are representative of their comparative knowledge of how users interact with their respective online content.

In contrast, Facebook allows users to build personalized accounts and socially network with their community in exchange for the information you provide on that account. This site is monetized, meaning that they use your demographics to sale to companies that are in the market for someone like you. Because they have so many accounts connected, they have an enormous field of assets to sale, making them the leader in this style of business webpages. C&T’s website on the other hand, is built to inform you about the certain information hoping to attract your business. From what I have seen, they do not have personalization or social networking capabilities directly on their web portal thus they do not monetize their online content.

After reviewing both sites, it is my determination that having the ability to personalize an individual profile drives users to want to be at your web site and the internet is a vast forum of content that everyone wants to share. As color tv was to black and white broadcast, the internet is the new age of advertisement compared to traditional news applications. Keeping this in mind, you have to decide if you want to your website to be a marketing tool or just a plain informative page that barely generates viewership.

In conclusion, websites that just offer information on their services are missing out on opportunities to increase capital by not generating the ability to network and personalize. Networking and sites that generate wanted content, will continue to share a multibillion dollar advertising industry.

A Selfie is Worth a Thousand Comments: How Kim Kardashian Turned Herself into a Media Mogul.

Whether you love the Kardashians, or love to hate the Kardashians, chances are you know the famous family’s name. The family first came into the public eye in 1995 when the late Robert Kardashian Sr. was apart of O.J. Simpson’s  defense team representing O.J. in the People v O.J. trial. The family resurfaced again in 2007 when the hit reality show “Keeping up with the Kardashians” first aired, giving a glimpse into the lives of the Kardashian-Jenner family. Ten years later the show is still running and has turned the family into pop culture icons.

The most well known and fiscally successful Kardashian is Kim,with an astonishing 89 million Instagram followers and 49 million Twitter followers. Kim’s personal brand, that keeps her social media followers satisfied, is her actual image. Everyday people, magazines, and talk shows are fascinated by Kim’s ability to accentuate her famous features, through posting controversial selfies, promoting her husband’s clothing line, or snap chatting her beauty routine. Kim created this image by living by the mantra: there’s no such thing as bad publicity. Kim turned a sex tape “leak” into a playboy cover, from there the controversy continued and so did her magazine appearances, along with a growing following from the public.

Today a key part of Kim’s marketing strategy is communication with her audiences. Kim can instantly share what products she loves (Kardashian can see profits up to $300,000 for products she endorses online), give her followers glimpses into her elaborate vacations, and post an endless stream of selfies. Why this constant communication is a key to her success is because she has forged a platform and a following to share what she’s doing or what she endorses.

Key business lessons that are components of Kim Kardashians continued success are her ability to turn scandals into positive publicity opportunities, allow constant communication with her supporters, and utilize social media. Objectively speaking, Kim’s ability to capitalize on basic marketing techniques to become one of the most recognizable figures, makes her nothing short of admirable. To see what scandal Kim will capitalize on next, we’ll just have to Keep up with Kim, which is exactly what she wants.

 

Author: Nicole Bodi- Student at IUPUC

What can we learn from Apple Inc. ?

Apple Inc. is one of the most successful businesses in the US to date. To say the least, Apple has made a name for itself in the American culture. According to an article written by John Kell in the Fortune 500 online magazine, Apple was number one on the list of the top 10 most successful companies in the US. Apple earned $35.9 billion dollars last year. With the unveiling of the iPhone 6, 6plus and the Apple Watch, Apple has made it self a leader in the computer gadget industry.

Being an Apple consumer, I have noticed that Apple’s image is to make technology beautiful. With all of its products that become thinner and sleeker, they have accomplished to make their products attractive to nearly anyone. With curves instead of sharp edges they appeal to look softer and more friendly.

Apple holds on to the image of their beautiful products by always coming up with a new and improved product just about every year, sometimes twice a year. It’s always either smaller, thinner, more colors, bigger screen, lighter, or better quality. By coming out with a better product so often, it keeps your customer base involved. The customer wants the next coolest piece of hardware so that they can have the status that comes with being ahead of the game.

Apple has developed a culture around their products that keep their customer base growing. They do not just specialize in hardware they also have created various programs that keep their particular customers involved in the company everyday. Applications such as Apple Music, iTunes, AppleTV, Siri, iMessage, and the list can go on of the different ways that apple has diversified its potential.

A huge lesson to be learned from Apple is to be diverse in what we can offer and make it flawless. The reason why Apple can bring in so much cash flow is because they can dip into many different markets and appeal to all kinds of people. Their products are more user-friendly so that even children under the age of 5 can use them. America has definitely benefited from Apple products and I don’t see Apple doing anything else but continuing to grow.

_________________________________________________________

Apple Reports Fourth Quarter Results. (2014, October 11). In Apple. com.

Kell, J. (2015, June 11). Fortune 500’s Most Profitable Companies. Fortune.

Wild Slang

Have you recently looked up the average number of text messages you send every day? If you have, have you checked to see in how many of them you used abbreviations, incorrect grammar, slang, or no punctuation? As texting and social media have been on the rise over the past decade everyone has adjusted to simplifying their ideas, with grammatical mistakes, as much as possible. After we continuously make grammatical errors or simplify our thoughts in our posts or texts it becomes a habit. This habit of informal communication has begun to take over the world.

Knowing when to use formal writing and correct punctuation is very important. Using incorrect punctuation can reflect a negative image on a person in certain situations. For example, if you are trying to get a job and you wrote a resume using incorrect punctuation, slang and abbreviations then that could foreshadow on whether you receive the job or not. We should all know to use correct punctuation and proper grammar when dealing with professional topics. If you are writing to your co-workers, bosses or teachers it is important to know the difference between their and there or your and you’re. Writing an email, letter or memo with incorrect wording or improper punctuation can create a different meaning then what the sender is trying to portray. Make sure you proofread every piece of writing that’s supposed to be important and sound professional so you can make it correct.

The interesting thing about slang and informal communication is that it has grown so much during the past decade. Most of these improper writings come from the younger generation in the world. The older generation is better at knowing the correct times to use the correct language. Most of our grandparents and even some parents do not understand what this “slang” means half the time. It is easier for them to use the correct language and punctuation because they grew up using it. The access for electronics, social media, and texting starts at a very young age now-days. Repetitively reading and replying to slang at a very young age creates the bad habit of informal communication during this young age. Everyone should know that doing something over and over from such a young age is hard to change when you get older. We all need to constantly remind ourselves that it is okay to talk and write informally, but we also need to practice formal writing at times.

Any time you have the chance to write formally you should take advantage of it. Writing formally makes you look professional and educated. Correcting as many mistakes as possible in your texts and social media posts will help form the skills of correct writing for appropriate times. Next time you see someone make a mistake point it out and make sure they understand the difference in what they wrote and what they meant. Being corrected might be embarrassing at that point in time, but impressing someone with correct grammar, punctuation and word usage in the long run will bring a great feeling of accomplishment. Language can be confusing, but hey so are the electronic devices you use daily. If you can succeed with figuring out all the new technology then formal communication won’t be too big of a challenge for you to understand.

– Trevor Armel IUPUC Business Finance Major

Can Social Media Get You Fired?

Most people have posted to some sort of social media, whether it is Facebook, Twitter, or some other site.  Thanks to technology, people can upload pictures right after they are taken, update their Facebook status, tweet and add comments to other people’s posts all with the click of a few buttons.  Technology has also made it easier for employers to see what their employees are posting.  This has led to some people losing their jobs due to what they posted on social media.

Here are some examples:

  • In Georgia, Johnny Cook, a bus driver, was fired for sharing a story on his Facebook page about a child who was not allowed to get a school lunch because his lunch account had a 40 cent deficit.  The school requested that Cook take down the post and say that he is sorry or else be fired.  He chose the latter.
  • In Australia, a video was posted of some miners doing “The Harlem Shake.”  After their employer found out, the miners were fired.
  • A woman lost her job after insulting her boss on Facebook.  Her boss was one of her Facebook friends.
  • In 2013, a picture was posted of a Taco Bell employee licking some hard taco shells.  He was fired, along with the employee who took the picture.  Taco Bell stated that the employees were fired for taking the picture and posting it to the Internet, which is against their policies.
  • A high school math teacher from Denver was fired for tweeting about marijuana and posting some risqué photos.
  • A woman from Switzerland was fired from her job just for checking updates on Facebook on the same day she called in sick to work stating “she could not work in front of a computer as she needed to lie in the dark.”
  • A woman was fired from her waitress job after posting insults about the restaurant’s customers on her Facebook page.
  • Celebrities are not safe either.  Gilbert Gottfried was fired by Aflac “less than an hour” after tweeting jokes about the tsunami in Japan.
  • Ex-MLB player Mike Bacsik was fired from a radio show in Texas after tweeting, “Congrats to all the dirty Mexicans in San Antonio” after the Dallas Mavericks lost a playoff game in 2010.

Social media is a good way to keep in touch with family members and friends.  Before you post anything though, you may want to stop and think about who might see it and could there be any negative consequences.  If you are Facebook friends with your boss, definitely do not post derogatory comments about him because more than likely he will see it, and you may be called into his office to discuss it the next day.

Another thing to ask yourself before posting anything is “will this reflect badly on me or my employer?”  If your employer is doing something unethical or illegal, that is one thing, just be prepared for the consequences if you write about it on social media.  But if you are just venting about something that made you angry at work or posting a picture of yourself doing a keg stand, you may want to rethink it and just share it with close friends and family members.

 

By Amanda Smith, Business major – IUPUC

 

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/06/living/buzzfeed-social-media-fired/index.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/07/26/fired-over-facebook-posts_n_659170.html

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/employee-fired-from-taco-bell-for-licking-shells/

 

 

 

How Language Changes and New Words Are Created

The evolution of language is an interesting thing. It happens every day in every culture. From Shakespearean language to the abbreviated text message, language is capable of evolving in extraordinary ways. There are new words appearing everyday making it difficult to understand how they change. Now there are programs that are constantly scanning the web for new words and phrases it has become easier for language to be tracked and expanded. With new words appearing everyday it can become difficult to understand how they evolve.

Over time all languages change. In early history, language changed due to migration, colonization, and invasions. As of recently language has been evolving due to new technologies, products, industries and experiences that require new words. When you use a new word you are inspiring change in the way we use language. With each individual using the language in his or her own way it also helps to change how we use language.

The change in language happens in different ways. Meanings of words change as the cultures evolve. When sounds interact it may change the way they originally sounded and were used. Words are then created from different sounds interacting. Those words are then added to sentences to express new or old meanings.

Adding new words to the dictionary takes time. The Oxford Dictionary uses the Oxford English Corpus and the Oxford Reading Programme. The Oxford English Corpus is a collection of texts of written or spoken language presented in electronic form. The Oxford English Corpus tracks and records what new words are being used. It also includes the context in which they are used. This helps to find new trends in usage and spelling. The Oxford mainly searches the World Wide Web (WWW). It scans text from academic journals, novels, newspapers, magazines, blogs, emails and social media.

The Oxford Reading Programme is also a key aspect in adding new words to the dictionary. The Reading Programme is an electronic collection of sentences or short extract taken from a large variety of writing. Anything from scientific journals to music lyrics are collected. While the Reading Programme scans the WWW and collects this data while an international network of readers look for new words and meanings or other language changes.

Over the last five years the Oxford Dictionary had added quite a few new words. It includes:

  • Binge-watch
  • Neckbeard
  • Hot mess
  • YOLO
  • Cray

Although new words are added to the dictionary every year, new definitions of words already in the dictionary are being added as well. A new meaning for brick was recently added to the dictionary in reference to a large smart phone that is typically an earlier model that had limited functionality.

Language is always changing and becoming something new. People are still able to communicate with one another. As technology becomes more advanced so does the language and the ways we use it. Today we are a multimedia society. We abbreviate words and communicate without actually having to make a sound. Maybe in 30 years we wouldn’t even have to do that. With change always happening language must adapt quickly for those who use it.

By: Theresa Hickey, Accounting Major – IUPUC

http://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/linguistics/change.jsp

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us

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