Not only just Powerfully Simple but also Energy Efficient

SocialSignIn achieved the runners up award for the Best Energy Efficiency Scheme at the Making Birmingham Greener & Healthier Awards 2015.

award

Here at SocialSignIn we feel that we do what we can do save energy and to be an efficient and modern organization to help keep the world green. Our small impact of this life will make a difference, we are economical. Staff at SocialSignIn mostly live in Birmingham where we are based and walk to work including Darren Fiander the Director of sales and marketing at SocialSignIn, as well as putting his step forward instead of on the gas pedal he also visits local charity shops.

DUCKS! Yes that is what our programmer brought last week into the office.

I bet you are confused, SocialSignIn is a company that specialises in social media management, so why on earth would the programmer be buying ducks!? Well before you get carried away imagining ducks flying around the SocialSignIn’s office just to let you know, they are plastic.

Will the programmer here at SocialSignIn went away and searched the internet of plastic ducks, pretty random we all thought. The reason behind the purchasing of the plastic toy rubber ducks is so that he could play a joke on Ben the owner and founder of SocialSignIn, none of us mere mortals in the office understood his hysterics whilst he was placing several of these small rubber ducks around Ben’s desk when he wasn’t in work, so we just had to know the secret behind the ducks.

Turns out that programmers do have the occasional joke as well as being geniuses creating website, apps and all those technical things that society has accustomed too. After all that they find the time to play jokes in this case it was the ducks that were necessary for this programming joke.

As much as this interested the staff in the office Will didn’t explain the joke he just said “it’s a programmer thing”. Me being the curious girl I am have tried to find out the joke behind the ducks. When I searched about it on the internet I couldn’t find the secret to the joke, but I did come across ‘teach yourself’ coding sites which to me looks like someone has just randomly hit the keyboard. None of it made any sense to me.

After searching the internet in search of the duck programming joke, I didn’t find any glimpse of it but I did end up reading ‘15 facts about ducks’ so that was interesting, at least I learnt a few facts.

When I gave up trying to find information and totally confused from reading about coding I didn’t care too much though because I did gain a small rubber duck to accompany me on my desk everyday at work, as did everyone else in the office. Even Though we are all adults at SocialSignIn we all experienced joy that we had a little duck friend, we are still children at heart.

There was a strange and wide range of ducks varying from devil to alien ducks, each staff member chosen a duck which they wanted to display on their desk. But the ones that chosen last didn’t get to choose and they seem envious of other staffs ducks as some swaps have been attempted and failed.

As we all had a duck ourselves we tried to relate them to ourselves when; the marketing girl Sophie told me something her friend had told her; the analogy of ducks: “Be like a duck! Keep calm and unruffled on the surface but underneath the surface paddle like mad” quite inspirational for ducks if I must say so. We then went to comment that the analogy of ducks is similar to the staff here at SocialSignIn we are always smiling and appear to swim leisurely through our work but underneath we paddle like mad.

Here’s the oh so famous ducks that I have mentioned in my short blog.

meet the team... of ducks.

meet the team… of ducks.

Some of the ducks in front of our SocialSignIn logo.

Some of the ducks in front of our SocialSignIn logo.

Want to read more about how social media and ducks relate

http://kyleahickman.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/social-media-marketing-analogy-of-duck.html 

My Takes On Marketing.

Marketing chart with red markerMarketing is a process of positively promoting a business’s brand,product or service. Its to teach consumers about the business and why they should choose a business’s product/service over their competitors, an easy way to do this is to find the correct method and to define the right method to use to influence and educate a business’s consumers.

The main functions of marketing within a business is to deliver, communicate and create value to the consumer. Although marketing contains lots of functions and elements the main definition for marketing is that its main focus is providing customer satisfaction.

There is many elements of marketing, there are four P’s of marketing; product, place, promotion and price. These four elements must be used in a persistent plan in order to effectively target the consumer. The business’s product can either be a physical product or a service, a place can be where the product is purchased so either online or a shop for example. Price is the amount that the consumer would pay for the product and promotion would be the tools used to promote the business brand and products so an effective way for them to do that would be to promote via social media tools.

When a business carries out market research they should remember that marketing is when a business prepares their brand/product for the marketplace. Marketing would involve a business’s understanding who their potential customers are and what they would want to get out of their product or business service. Marketing a business’s service or product can include logos, colours, slogans and other designs to link the image in with the interests of that business’s potential target audience. A business that correctly carries out marketing is able to define their business brand and improves to attract the market share they wish to receive.

A way that marketing can be viewed is that is it a social process by when individuals and organizations can gain what they want and need by creating and exchanging value with others. Needs and wants are very interesting when looking at them from a marketing perspective, this is due to needs and wants having subtle differences this is because people now can appreciate what was once a want is now a need, so an example for this that people need a smartphone so they are able to contact friends/business contacts, download apps to manage social media within a business to keep up with the present times.

An important fact to remember is that marketing isn’t just one thing, it is everything that a consumer experiences when it comes to a business. Marketing contains a business’s advertising, what the consumers hears about them and the consumers customer service that they receive and on to the follow up care that the business provides. For a consumer to choose a company it really does depend on the advancements of the business’s marketing strategy they have in place to educate and influence them not to go with the competitor.

Many occasions marketing can be often be mixed up with advertising and also sales but it is important to understand that there is a difference between them. A huge benefit from understanding the differences between marketing and advertising is that a business can carry out effective market research which can put the company on the path to substantial growth.

Marketing in a nutshell is a method in planning, implementation and having control over a mix of business activities which would then intend to bring buyers and sellers together for the exchange or transfer of products.

Advertising is a section of marketing for a business, it is a paid section of a business’s marketing strategy which is not directly personal but more so a form on influencing and persuading via a message usually using brand ambassadors.

From researching I would say that marketing is like a storyboard, but instead of including a Introduction, middle and end it includes all aspects for a business to promote their business. Marketing includes advertising, market research, media planning, public relations, customer support and a sales strategy. Marketing is the all inclusive aspects of ensuring a business to have success and advertising is just a section of a business’s marketing to help achieve the success via ad placements in magazines,newspapers,television,billboards,radio and obviously online.

My Dads Take On Social Media

“Newspapers are the original social media”

When I was sat next to my dad last night and he came out with this statement I laughed but then as I sat there and thought about it. In a way he slightly has a point to argue there. Yes newspapers may be paper, just ink on paper, but in the past people would buy a newspaper to see what’s going on in the world and read them and learn new things. This is kind of what people use social media for but there are ALOT of differences between newspapers and the social media we use today; my main argument that they are different is that newspapers just give information, you can’t do further research with a newspaper like you can when using social media to find out information. I guess some people still love newspapers to have some alone time to themselves to sit and read, yet using social media you aren’t alone… you can message people from as close as sitting next to you to the other side of the world, the possibilities are endless.

I always have these strange conversations with my parents when I attempt to converse about such things as the internet and especially social media because of the generation differences and also that my parents aren’t very ‘technical’. When I say they aren’t technical evidence of this is that my dad only created his first email address at the age of 53, well my mom made it for him in all honesty. My dad felt that it was time for him to have a “computer thing” so for his birthday we brought him a Samsung tablet so that he could be involved in the present times, my dad then sent his first ever email and it contained the obtuse amount of text “HI” which he send to his wife.

My Dad has little to no knowledge on social media or the use and advantages of the internet, although he still does ‘try’ to talk to me about it. He sure does attempt to argue his point strongly even though he doesn’t know what he’s on about he does very well at making us all laugh about it.

In major comparison with my dad my mom was bought an iPad for her birthday a few years ago and I don’t think she’s put it down since. Anytime I see her she has that iPad in her hand, she really is attached. I think the only time she talks to me is when something is “going wrong with it”, usually she had just got too many pages open and it slows it down or if its not that she’s requesting my charger because she can never find her own. Just the other night she was storming around the house saying “where is it”? “where is it”? “I need it” , I ignored her at first but she just carried on making noise so I asked her what she was looking for and she said “my baby”. I couldn’t believe that she’s personified an electrical item, she reminded me of Gollum from lord of the rings but instead of being obsessed over a ring instead its an iPad.gollum


Everytime she loses it and cant find it her face is just like this.


Linkedin… The Benefits to an Apprentice

As being a new apprentice for a social media company I am using lots of different platforms and programmes that I had no experience or knowledge of before. The main one I’ve been using is Linkedin. It is rather amazing really. I love Linkedin it really is amazing with its possibilities and I find the whole concept of the programme very impressive. With just a click in the search bar using Linkedin you can search for companies, groups and specific people. Its been very helpful for me when researching for potential clients.

I’ve come to learn that Linkedin is a professional way for people to connect with others and its a very easy way for businesses to research and to get into contact with other businesses at total ease. The other functions that are possible on the social media account have really helped me with my new job role as an apprentice, it’s allowed me to narrow down results with filters to help find the right person that is needed to contact the specified company. The filters on the searching process are really helpful and effective due to being able to filter locations, names, the industry and so much more its resulted in me being able to find their contact details easily for the sales team for them to get in contact with them.

On Linkedin past employers and connections are able to give recommendations on individuals linkedin profiles, there are ways to do it and ways not to do it here are some examples.

Here are my recommendations for using Linkedin:

Do’s:

Do ask someone who you have worked with or worked for that will ensure a reliable and professional recommendation. Future employers or clients can view your profiles and seeing someone who has given you a poor recommendation it doesn’t look too good.

See image for example of good recommendations

linkedin-recommendations-on-profile

Dont’s

Don’t have friends or family relatives writing your recommendations!!! It will not look very professional in comparison with a recommendation from the manager of the company you had previously worked for.

I’m unsure if this guy thought that  this comment was a private message to the individual he was supposed to be giving a ‘professional’ recommendation on, well this was the result in his attempt.(See image below).

Screenshot 2015-01-27 at 14.13.42

The main reason for the option to give recommendations on either current employees or past is to help employers for the future within their job prospects. If a job seeking individual had a very good employment with a past employer/company and someone they either worked with or worked for left a positive recommendation on their profile then it would definitely make that individuals profile a lot more attractive to potential future employers. This may then lead to them considering to offering the job seeker an interview for a job opportunity.

Since I have been using Linkedin I have come across few profiles where individuals are seeking a job and there are clear differences between peoples profiles, there are ones you come across and they are really impressive with showing all of their past job experiences, volunteering experiences, their skills and very detailed and positive recommendations from past employers. Then in comparison with those there are other profiles that I have come across and questioned if they are serious or if they are oblivious how to use this social media programme correctly in order to look professional enough to be employed.

Here is an example of someone who hasn’t quite got the jist of using Linkedin just yet:

Screenshot 2015-01-27 at 14.20.23

When Facebook Went Down!!

DUN DUN DUNNNN.         scared

This is so many people’s worst nightmare, the most popular social media site going down for a whole thirty minutes, across the world!! With 1.2 billion monthly active users, Facebook is a beast!

To some people instead of just half an hour it would of felt more like a lifetime. What did everyone do!? instead of looking at funny videos or pictures of cats or hundreds of selfies taken with a selfie stick people would of had to find something else to do, maybe something more productive? Read a book or a newspaper? Talk to someone else on the train when commuting? No. How about go on Twitter and complain about how Facebook isn’t working and how inconvenient it is to you, then because of everyone tweeting about it then resulting in Facebook to be trending. So why did this happen? Why was the use of Facebook for half an hour taken from peoples lives!? News reports that it was down to hackers hacking into Facebook, well with all the embarrassing selfies and anything else that people share on Facebook it is a little worrying knowing that people somewhere are able to hack the biggest social media site in the world!

Not only did Facebook experience downtime so did the famous photo sharing social media Instagram, this also reported to have been hacked. No updates of people’s healthy breakfasts or selfies before work and pictures of funny stuff happening on public transport to work… I was asleep at the time when Facebook and Instagram were in the dark so I didn’t even know about any of this until I heard it on the radio when driving to work, searching for a radio station that was actually playing music! I am just glad that the social media sites were only down for under an hour and I’m sure that the majority of the population that use social media would agree, I don’t see how people of today could last without social media. Who would want to go back to the times before funny cat videos and vines were around keeping us entertained in our daily lives?

Social media really has become a part of day to day life, statistics show results of that Americans aged 18-64 who use social networks say they spend an average of 3.2 hours per day doing so, if you think about it that amount of time is just showing an average! there are individuals in society that would spend up to more than 3.2 hours a day on social media.

It’s crazy but really any time that we click on our phone apps throughout the day then all of that time spent looking through for example Twitter, Facebook and Instagram all of that time adds up.

How much time do you think that you spend on Social Media each day?


If I Had a Dollar (Why I Am a Feminist)

really touching

girl in the hat

image courtesy Devil Doll image courtesy Devil Doll

Because my mother was a painter and a beauty when artists had patrons and a woman like that needed a man to take care of her, so she married a money man.

Because my mother’s mother was a beauty and her mother was, too, and that’s what people said: “She was a beautiful woman,” as if that was the only remarkable thing.

Because I was born in 1966, the year Betty Friedan and others started the National Organization of Women and challenged an industry which required flight attendants to quit if they got married, pregnant, or reached the age of 32.

Because when my mother had me, she stopped painting and started cleaning house and throwing dinner parties and smoking too many cigarettes and crying in the mirror.

Because my mother never told me that I looked pretty because she did not want me to grow…

View original post 806 more words

Being An Apprentice.

Being An Apprentice.  

logo

As a new Apprentice for a social media and marketing company, I feel as though I am bambi on ice. I thought I knew a lot about social media…yet I was so unknowledgeable on such in-depth details and  the nitty gritty functions that social media really does involve.

Something i’ve come to learn while working at SocialSignIn,  is that I am the second Apprentice at the company. I am following in the footsteps of Poppy who has proved herself immensely, she has grown with the company and expanded her skills and mindset. Poppy has now finished her Apprenticeship and has become a full-time employee doing what she loves. It is really inspiring that someone as young as me has managed to achieve so much in little time, I hope to follow in her path even though it may be hard as she has set the Apprentice expectation so high. 

So far working as an Apprentice for SocialSignIn I’ve been adjusting to using lots of different social media programmes such as Twitter, Facebook and new ones to me Linkedin and Google+. I really have grown fond of Linkedin, at first I was so confused and didn’t know what it was all about, but after only a week of using the social media programme, I have learnt a lot of how it can benefit not only employees, but also employers who are head-hunting.

Working within SocialSignIn so far has been an eye-opener, instead of being able to have a nice long sleep each night and waking up anytime I want that’s all changed now for me haha.

I am awake at the crack of dawn and set off to travel into Birmingham City Centre each morning in my tiny titan blue ford KA. I even had managed to find a cheap-ish car park for me to park as being an Apprentice there’s no way I could be affording City parking prices, and trust me its a struggle. Well also something relevant now, working at SocialSignIn I’ve been taking in so much new information such as; how a dashboard can manage social media posts, scheduling posts for the future, filtering social media accounts etc.

Apprenticeships are great opportunities for young individuals to find work and be able to get employment even if they lack experience within the roles and industry of work that they may want to work within. As an apprentice I feel really lucky to be able to be employed full time earning money,  it may not be a lot of money but any income is better than none and as well as getting paid I’m learning whilst working and at the end of my one year apprenticeship agreement I will receive a Social Media And Marketing Level 3 qualification. 

I bet as a company you would think to yourself why should I hire an Apprentice?

Well an answer for that is that hiring an Apprenticeship gives them an opportunity to work within an industry and grow and develop into a successful young adult with real life experience of working yet also learning on the job. Hiring an apprentice can also be an advantage for the company, because it gives current staff opportunity to expand on their skills by being able to train a young individual and teach them as much about their job and the company they work for which then results in them also learning more about themselves and the company along the way.

There are so many positives being an apprentice for not only the apprentice but also employers, see image below for examples:

Apprenticeship-Week-Infographic