Category Archives: Social Media

Confessions of a Twitter Addict

I was skeptical to join Twitter. At first, I thought it was unorganized – just a jumbled list of different people’s thoughts. I thought it would be overwhelming to keep up with.

I’ve been tweeting since November 2010. I really only joined because my English professor assigned us homework that required us to condense some of Shakespeare’s most famous sonnets into 140 characters or less and post them on Twitter. I ended up really enjoying the assignment, and I decided to keep my Twitter account after the class ended.

When I first joined, one of the first “mentions” I received was from my friend, who told me that Twitter would become “the most addicting thing in my life.”

I have to admit…he was right.

Since then, I’ve found that Twitter has many more practical uses than just social networking. I work for Ohio State Athletics Communications and also in marketing for Ohio State Rec Sports. In both organizations, we use Twitter to post game updates, scores, general news, and events. During spring quarter 2011, Twitter was very useful in informing the public about cancellations of outdoor sporting events because of the rain. Twitter is also very useful in getting feedback from students when they retweet or mention us.

Most recently, I have paired up the use of Foursquare with Twitter. Foursquare is a social networking site that allows you to “check-in” wherever you are and lets your friends know what you’re up to. Ohio State Rec Sports also utilizes Foursquare. We monitor how many people are checking in at the RPAC, ARC, and Jesse Owens Rec Centers.

I also follow many local businesses, PR resources, and media outlets. I found it interesting that many of the PR sources, like @easyColumbus, tweeted internship opportunities. It seemed like there were at least five or more new opportunities posted every day. To me, this seems like a great way to inform people about ways to get internships. I have many friends that have had trouble finding internships. I’d love to tell them about following PR resources on Twitter.

In short, I am very enthusiastic about Twitter. I’ve had nothing but positive experiences with it, and I intend to keep tweeting for a long time.


Facebook Spartan: Threat to Apple’s Social Media Dominance?

The world lost an ingenious man on Wed, October 5, 2011.  With an average of about two-in-five people owning and using one of his Apple products, Steve Jobs was a Jules Verne-like visionary and a modern tech genius.

He made his power-house company, Apple, from a garage in Silicon Valley to the world’s leading tech company.  His death marks the end of an icon, and leaves a wake in the industry.  With the somewhat lack-luster release of the new iPhone 4S, the next step for Apple’s new management is anyone’s guess.  Can it keep up with Jobs’s technological innovation, or will his passing open the floodgates for a brand new titan in the industry?

Enter Facebook Spartan.  A perfectly timed attempt – albeit by coincidence – to take over a chunk of Apple’s app market.  Facebook Spartan is Facebook’s own attempt at an app store.  Facebook knows that Apple products make up a big portion of the market (remember 2 in 5 people?), and it wants a piece of the action.  By creating a program that piggybacks on Safari, a Mac-based web browser, Facebook would be able to completely bypass the Apple app-store and create its own app-store on the web.  In doing so, Facebook could potentially siphon hundreds, if not thousands, of app downloads away from Apple every day.

The Facebook Spartan project has hurtled numerous roadblocks in its development, but looks to be finally closing in on a finished product.  Rumors are that Facebook intends to launch the program in the coming weeks.  Only time will tell if this is the real rise of Facebook, or just another great way for social media to connect all of us.  Here’s the link with the latest info:

Print News Release Retires



Subject:           News:  Print News Release Retires


Print news release retires

E-mail news release takes over

COLUMBUS, OHIO—The e-mail news release has recently taken over for the retired print news release in public relations agencies and departments all over the world.

Ivy Lee developed the print news release in 1906.  Lee used a news release and communication with journalists and photographers to foster an open and positive relationship with members of the media.

Now, the e-mail news release is making a splash in the public relations world because it is faster, easier and more thorough.

“Everyone wants to be the first to break a story,” said e-mail news release, “e-mailing a news release makes that possible while including more information.”

An e-mail news release should include:

  • A subject line
  • A headline
  • A subhead (optional)
  • A dateline
  • A lead
  • Copy
  • “###” at the end of the story
  • Media contact’s contact information
  • “For immediate release” and the release date
  • Links to any relevant websites

Strategies to writing an effective e-mail news release:

  • The subject line should say “News:” followed by a very specific line about what the news is.
  • The headline should be very specific and eye-catching so the journalist doesn’t just delete your e-mail
  • Call ahead to tell the journalist to expect the release
  • Write with the most important information first
  • Use bullet points for important listed information because people tend to skim on screen, rather than read
  • Include quotes in the release

The print news release chose to retire because it felt that it wasn’t an effective form of communication anymore.

“I’m old-fashioned,” print news release said, “It was time for me to retire, and I think e-mail news release is already doing a great job.”


Contact Information                                          For Immediate Release

Jane Doe                                                                         August 3, 2011


Professional Writing Twitter!/ProfWritingOSU

Spotlight on Worthington Libraries: An Organization’s Use of Social Networking

With all this talk about using social media to promote your business, it’s time to see what it looks like in practice. When it’s well done. I hope that this post will encourage contributors and commenters to highlight other organizations that are particularly good at leveraging social media. In this spirit, I present to you…Worthington Libraries.

In addition to attracting new members, Worthington Libraries puts a lot of effort into promoting events and activities. There is always something going on at each of its branches, so it needs a way to draw people in and encourage them to get involved. Recently, social networking applications have made it easier for organizations to deliver information to a wider audience. Another advantage of these applications is that they allow people to interact with the organization by asking questions and giving feedback on the services that it provides.

Worthington Libraries has made social networking a large part of its web site’s interface. Links to each of its social networking applications (Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, and LinkedIn) are clearly visible on the site’s home page ( It even offers RSS feeds for patrons to keep in touch with what’s going on at and around the Libraries!

Of all the social networking applications, Worthington Libraries uses Facebook and Twitter most extensively. Its Facebook and Twitter profiles are very similar. One key to the success of Worthington Libraries’ social media presence is frequent updates; it adds a new post every other day or so. These posts are generally short and to the point, yet they still manage to convey the most necessary information, such as where and when an event takes place. The majority of its posts encourage people to visit the library, educate them, or ask them to give their opinion on a particular topic, such as an author they like.

In each of its posts, it maintains a friendly, conversational tone. Many posts feature exclamation points, which can make the topics sound exciting to readers. Here is a Facebook post about Job Help Week:

“Job Help Week @ Your Library is March 14-18! The Job Help Week programs at Worthington Libraries will offer tips and strategies to job seekers in all phases of their careers and personalized sessions to help craft and finetune your resume.”

Another way that Worthington Libraries connects with its audience is by sharing multimedia. Its Flickr account gives patrons (and potential patrons!) access to pictures of events like the Read to Your Baby Festival and the Edible Books Contest. On its YouTube account, it has posted videos of children’s storytime sessions and lectures from professional career advisors. Pictures and videos let people see what Worthington Libraries is like. If they like what they see, they may decide to support the organization by signing up for a membership or attending a future event.

Worthington Libraries receives a positive response to its social networking efforts. The casual interface of a social networking site makes an organization seem friendly and relatable to its audience. What do you think about organizations using social networking to promote themselves? Can you provide an example of an organization that is particularly digital/social media savvy? Share your thoughts by clicking the comment button below.