Monthly Archives: February 2014

Google Me, Google You!

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My name is Amanda Scheffer Cavanagh, now after I got married. However, before that it was Amanda Rachel Scheffer. As a child of divorce I was able to choose which name I wanted and to me that made a difference, I have always been proud of my name and felt it was an intrinsic part of myself. I put my name into Google and this is what I found..

Screen Shot 2014-02-21 at 8.19.41 PMOnly one of those pictures is me, and only my new name was found to really be me. What?! I have used this name for 24 years of my life, and the first result I found that was actually related to me was on page 4 with a press release that a professor from Hofstra University had written about coverage of the Presidential Debate that took place there in 2008.

Now, I know that I wasn’t doing a lot in the public eye, but I was doing things and posting things and commenting, but apparently I just did not leave enough of an impact to be associated with my name.

Enter my decision to work in social media and learn about social media marketing from the University of Florida, and now my new identity makes me a lot easier to find! Screen Shot 2014-02-21 at 8.19.22 PMThis is all me! This is a huge transformation in a short period of time. I only started posted blogs and commenting in August 2013, and by staying on top of things and continuously posting I have been able to grow something of a presence online. It is only starting, and it is pretty small, but I am very excited to see my name actually reflect who I am. I had learned a lot of Search Engine Optimization tips and posted about them here, and by using them over time I have been able to grow a slight presence. This to me is increasingly exciting and is a constant reminder that I need to be posting more, commenting more and connecting more. That is the point of social media, right? to be social. I am increasingly interested in growing my network and connecting with new people about social media and other interests of mine. I think that it is amazing how people all around the world can connect and reach out to each other through the internet and I love being a part of it.

When I searched for my email address, my new email address came up with nothing that was actually me, while my old one actually had a couple of relevant hits.

Screen Shot 2014-02-21 at 9.29.24 PMThe top link was when my friend lost her dog, and we were reaching out via various social media platforms if anyone picked her up and took her home. Just to let you know, that story has a happy ending and the dog did make it home. The other two links were from my undergraduate days of school and various work that I did with my professors. I find it interesting that more information came up from my email address with my maiden name than my current address. I don’t know why that is, other than I used my maiden name email address more frequently since my new one is only a year old.

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Old Navy App

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Screen Shot 2014-02-17 at 2.11.15 PMThis week I decided to look at Old Navy as a company and see what kind of app they had. A few months ago I had written a review of Old Navy online and their app, Old Navy Snap Appy and I wanted to see what was going on. First off, I was shocked to see that the Snap Appy app was completely gone, and did not show up in the App Store at all. Instead there was a new Old Navy app! This one was much more useful and was a way to shop online, on my phone!

oldnavy 1The app opens up with what sale is happening and shows what coupon code can be used when checking out. I like that it also has a list of what types of clothing you can look for within the app. Old Navy offers a lot of choices that are typically not shown in the store, Maternity, Petite sizes for women, Tall for men and for women; lots of different choices. With the app, it is similar to the online shopping experience and there are all of the same choices.

When looking at the shopping in closer detail, you can select categories, colors, and prices just like when shopping online. I find this incredibly convenient and it shows a huge improvement from the initial app that was put out.

Next, I noticed that the app oldnavy 2requested my location. After I said “no,” it really did keep my privacy and just showed a variety of stores. I then went back into my settings and selected to allow my location to be shared and it allowed me to find local stores easily. This sparked my interest in where other Old Navy would be located globally and I was successful in finding out that in 2012, Old Navy opened its first global store in Japan. While the company had already had a large presence there with Gap and Banana Republic, Old Navy is just becoming an option.

I took a look at the Old Navy Facebook and noticed that there was no mention of this app. I am wondering if the company is just allowing people to stumble upon it themselves. This to me doesn’t seem like a great strategy. I think people would really appreciate this app and the ability to find out what they can use the app for if they knew more about it.

oldnavy 3 For instance, this one app allows you to go the the 4 other companies that are related by easily clicking on the “brands” option. This seamlessly allows a transition with all of the same great shopping features as with Old Navy. I find that very useful since I do enjoy shopping at Gap as well for different items and now I have everything in one place. You can use the app as a guest, but signing into your account does make things easier for purchasing quickly since it will save your information and allow for easier processing. Also, if you shop online, it is quite similar to that same process.

I really enjoy the ease of use with the app, it seems as though there was a lot of time and effort put into making sure that it was simple and not confusing, which sometimes can happen. I just wish that there was an extra incentive to use it. I think that if there were coupons, or an extra discount to use on top of the regular discount they would see a big jump in the amount of people using the app.

oldnavy 4There was another feature that I found interesting was the barcode scanner. Luckily I just received some new workout clothes for Valentine’s Day and was able to see how it worked! I scanned this item and it showed up in the app in the color that I have, what was cool is that it showed me what other colors it comes in, and that one other color was on sale. To me this is a great feature since Old Navy does have some Online Only options.
When these mysterious fashions show up in the store, it is a great way to see what else they offer online and in what sizes. It is also great to show what other colors an item comes in that isn’t in the store. It was really easy to use and I find it a very convenient feature.

Lastly, I think that it is important to mention that the branding is consistent through the app, the online website and the social media pages that I looked at. I think that is an important part of making sure an app represents a company well, and I do believe that Old Navy did that with this app. Also, here is a GREAT commercial from Thanksgiving since I love Melissa McCarthy.

Second Life? I’ll stick with the first..

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Second_Life_LogoThis week we were tasked with learning about the Virtual World, Second Life. To start, an avatar is created. When choosing an avatar there are many different options; from humans, to vampires, or werewolves, a dragon, or other animals and more. I chose a woman with brown hair, since that was the most like me. I first signed up for Second Life on February First, to give myself a week to play around and figure out the world.

Screen Shot 2014-02-08 at 3.35.48 PMWithin the first week, I received four emails about the game. If I was super interested in the game, maybe I wouldn’t have found this irritating, but since I am only mildly interested, it was very frustrating to get this much mail in one week. If I ever get this much email from a company I would unsubscribe immediately due to lack of interest and reconsider shopping there in the future. However, in this case it reminded me to go in and check out what was going on in the world.

Screen Shot 2014-02-05 at 3.13.47 PMI spent a lot of time trying to talk to people. I traveled from destination to destination exploring different parts of the world, and whenever I came across someone I would say hello to try and initiate a conversation. To the right is one of the only replies that I got. Most people completely ignored me, even though I would stand there for 5-10 minutes to see if maybe they had gone to get a drink and would come back. Some people would walk away, and some people just turned their back on me. It was very frustrating, so I tried to go to more landing destinations since that is where there were more active chats happening and I would say hello and even ask if there was someplace a beginning should go, and no-one responded to me. This was not a great experience since if I was truly interested in joining this world, I would be very discouraged at this point.

Another difficult part I found, in the beginning was figuring out how to move. I am not a gamer, and really only play games that either see my body, like Xbox 360 Kinect, or Mario Party where the avatars move for  me. Due to that, I had a hard time figure out how to move my body. There was a lot of awkward motion, running into walls, getting stuck in a wall and having to figure out how to turn around and get out. At one point I also got completely stuck in a forest for about 20 minutes, as shown below. Screen Shot 2014-02-03 at 12.58.50 PM

This to me was very complicated, until I figured out how to fly. Flying was so much easier for me! While I learned how to walk around a lot easier as I played more, I really enjoyed being able to fly and see the various places from above and then see something interesting and decide to walk around. Flying, to me was probably one of the most enjoyable parts of this assignment.

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Here is my avatar learning how to fly.

When flying and changing destinations, I found a lot of interesting places. Stores to buy clothing in, dance clubs where I could animate my avatar to dance, and other buildings to see. There was also an insane asylum I went to that was made to look very creepy, as well as places where I could just lounge around if I wanted. I went to all of these places, and did various things, getting a drink from the bartender at a club and lounging on a tiger striped hammock in front of a store. What I found interesting though, was that not everything was open to the public. As I flew around, and walked from building to building, occasionally a wall of yellow lines would pop up and tell me that I could not enter since I was not invited. This was intriguing, since it showed me that even in this world, there are smaller micro communities that are very selective about who is invited.

One of the more interesting things places that I went to was a building next to a church that had this:

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I found it pretty cool that even though I was in a virtual world where everyone is so in charge in their own lives, there is something that is more powerful. Although, I do wonder that if I had named my avatar God, would I have been able to touch it? I think it was a pretty cool sun system as well. It went around in a circle on the table and was just an interesting feature overall.

All in all I found the virtual world an interesting place, but not one that I will be partaking in. Maybe if I had had more luck with interacting with people it may be different, but since that was not the case, I will have to say that I will be sticking to my First Life.

Results of my First Survey!

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surveyWhen I first set out to make this survey, I was hoping for a LOT of engagement, interaction and people taking my survey. This is not what happened, at all. I shared this survey on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. Between those three social media platforms, I have 1,500 connections. While there is some overlap, I can still safely say that I have 1,000 connections. I received 96 completed survey results. This is after friends of mine shared the survey as well, which brought the amount of people who saw my survey up to 2,500. This means that the amount of people who saw me or a friend of mine request survey results and completed the survey is 0.038%. WHAT?! While I knew that it would be hard to get people to take my survey, I really didn’t think it would be THIS hard. Especially since I was asking about social media, on various social media platforms.

Results:

Of the 96 people who took my survey, 21 were male and 75 were female

8% of people fell between 18-22 years old, 40% of people were between 23-27, 14% were between 28-32, 14% were between 33-37, 5% were between 38-42, 3% were between 43-47 and 16% were over the age of 48

60% had a Bachelor’s Degree, with 15% with a Master’s Degree and 13% only finished some college

77% of people did not have children, with 23% having children. Of that, 41% have only one child and 36% have 2 children

97% of people do use social media platforms, with 3% saying no they did not use social media platforms

Of the people who do use social media, 92% use their real names while 8% use fake names, when asked why a fake name would be used, the biggest response was that it was due to privacy concerns and not wanting their company to be able to find them on social media

When asked how please people are with the privacy level of the content an individual themselves places on social media, the results are: Screen Shot 2014-02-02 at 9.44.34 PM

I find this very interesting since so many people constantly complain when a new Facebook feature has been added that changes the privacy settings. The fact that only 21% of people are displeased in some way means that the people who get very upset about privacy and complain about it ad nauseam does not necessarily mean that they will partake in a survey.

So how often are people using various social media platforms?

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While I am not shocked that Facebook is used the most, I am a little more surprised that more people are not using Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest or Instagram. I knew that Myspace and Google+ would be a long shot, but I really thought that more people would use the other social media platforms more.

Put the social media platforms in the order of your preference

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I put this question in as a safeguard against lying. For instance, if all of a sudden Myspace had come up as the third or fourth preference I would know that people were not paying attention to what they were choosing as an option. However, I think that these results match the previous results very well, which means that people didn’t lie! I am excited about this since I was very nervous of whether or not people would be honest.

While I am thrilled that I got these results, I do realize a lot of mistakes that I made that I could fix in the future. I missed a lot of data gathering information when I did not ask more about age groups, education levels, or even offer more social media platforms. I completely forgot to include YouTube or Tumblr. I know there are a lot more social media platforms, but those two are pretty popular and should have been included. I think that learning to include more questions, as well as figuring out exactly what information I want would help me a lot so that I would really be able to pinpoint the information that I wanted to know. Let me know what you think!