The People of my Year – 2013
The final hours of 2013 are counting down. I know many of my folk are spread across the globe so to those already in 2014 I wish you Happy New Year. As I take in this day and the what this passage of time means to me I always come back to the people. It’s those that I’ve interacted with that made 2013 a landmark year in my life. To that end I put together a little slide show of the people who made 2013 great for me. I got a lot of folk but not everyone as some experiences didn’t result in pictures but regardless of that I thank you for being who you are. Through good, bad and ugly you all have played a role in my growth and evolution.
I wish love, joy, peace and happiness to you all. I’m looking forward to what 2014 has in store for us.
The Social Media Samurai’s People of 2013 from Nightfall 914 on Vimeo.
Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai
We All Have A Little Mobster In Us
If you’ve been active online long enough you have undoubtedly seen many different types of interaction and miscommunications between people. Some times parties with differing views can accept the fact they don’t see eye to eye and part ways without much fuss. Unfortunately more often than not neither side wants to back down. With no true physical deterrent in play to scale things back you usually end up with a back and forth exchange that becomes more about Ego then whatever the actual discussion originally was about. Even that can still end with no real long term damage but now with the speed and instantaneous element of Twitter we get another option. It’s the gang up, the pile on better known as the Mob Mentality. Essentially this is when one person expresses a view that isn’t agreed on or liked by others and results in a wave of confrontational, aggressive, damaging communications not just from the person/people who were the direct focus of the statement but from others outside of the convo now injecting themselves into the fray.
The platforms have evolved from the days of Yahoo chat rooms but the make up of the Mob has not changed. We’re a people who like and want to be heard and we now have the social media tools to put anything we want into the air without filter. It’s in all of us. Some of us feed into it more than others but it’s there. The recent Justine Sacco incident of an ugly racist tweet gone viral is just the latest example of how the public can dog pile on a person. Now let’s be clear that the Mob mentality isn’t always a bad thing. We live in a time where often it takes the mass movement of a mob to really get things to happen. Also as social media becomes more and more dominant as the core means of communication people need to have the awareness that nothing exists in a vacuum. As I’ve said before, assume you are always being watched. So, when the daughter of the South African mining billionaire, who herself works in PR for huge companies, makes racists tweets towards a group of people you must be ready for the mob. As kids we were told not to falsely yell fire in a crowded room. The Internets work the same way. It’s easy to incite riot with your views, opinions and thoughts.
Now here’s the question. How many of us can admit to being a part of the mob? Not as the directly offended party but piling on because it was funny or easy to do? Lets take this even further. How many of us have falsely been the target of the mob? It’s one thing when the people on the receiving end is clearly in violation but what of the person that is lied on and before you know it you’re under attack? I’ve seen both ends of the spectrum and it’s ugly. That’s the real issue here. You can’t stop people from reacting but what is the line where being offended crosses into offensive? Many of us do and say things online that majority of the time we will not say or do in a face to face interaction. That’s the risk of the mob. It often operates on the fine line of being proactive or being problematic. We’re still learning how social media works and the learning curve can be sharp. Sometimes we have to take that moment to stop and think. Sometimes you don’t need to hit send. Just observe and learn.
Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai
Merry Christmas From the Social Media Samurai
It’s the first Christmas season here in my new little corner of the Internet. After years on the Blvd it’s celebration time with the Samurai. It’s been 6 months of taking this blogging to the professional level and I’m excited about the future. While I take this day to enjoy time with the family I want to send a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all my family and friends. I hope you have a memorial Christmas. It’s been a whirlwind year but to be here and know that better times are not too far ahead gives me strength to keep on pressing on.
I’ve placed a few free audio treats after the jump to thank you for dropping by today. Enjoy!!!
Dj Cabezza’s Happy Holidays Mixx Series by Dj Cabezza on Mixcloud
Continue reading Merry Christmas From the Social Media Samurai
Tweeting Your Way To Unemployment
On one of my previous Samurai Skill posts I touched on the topic of operating online with the presence of mind that you are being watched. Social Media presents a mixed bag of personal and professional interactions. For those of us who depend on Twitter, Facebook, etc as part of our livelihood it’s a common practice to keep aware of that ever watching and screen saving eye. Now more than ever people are finding out how costly the wrong post can be. I’m sure everyone is aware of this past weekends’ ultimate digital foot-in-mouth drama surrounding Justine Sacco better known as #HasJustineLandedYet. With that disaster fresh on our minds how about we see a few more twitter moments that sent people from office to unemployment. Were they all termination worthy? Check them out for yourselves.
Now here’s politics at its dirtiest. In 2011, Taylor Palmisano—@itstaytime, dropped a series of racist Tweets like ones pictured here. After which she would eventually land a job as deputy finance director for the campaign of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. We all know no body digs up your old dirt like campaign politics. The ugly tweets were discovered and Palmisano was promptly removed from the position.
Continue reading Tweeting Your Way To Unemployment
The Growing Force of Social Leaders in Advertising
For decades we’ve automatically associated advertising media sponsorship with big name actors, sports stars and music artist. Their bigger then life existences that were portrayed to the public made them the ideal spokespersons for companies looking to grab attention and influence the consuming decisions of the people. While celeb star power is still in play for many brands especially when targeting the younger demographics, as the target market exits that specifics group you enter the section of society that no longer blindly follows the images portrayed via mainstream media. While social media has enabled a more direct communication between celebs and the general public, it has had a very adverse effect as well. Social Media and Reality TV has demystified a lot of the super star aura. The constant flow of information across the Internets has really humanized these figures. On the flip side the average person now has the ability to grow in influence and stature without the old requirements of “stardom.” Advertisers see this and as we move into the new year more and more of them know that social media leaders want and deserve proper compensation. Let’s look at some numbers.
Continue reading The Growing Force of Social Leaders in Advertising
2013 Pre-Jingle Ball Event: All Access Lounge – #DRJingle
I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric Community®. This Shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their advertiser. #Cbias #Shop #DRJINGLE
Nothing says Holiday time in New York City like the annual Z100 Jingle Ball music event. This past Friday before the official event went down Hammerstein Ballroom treated the people to a wonderful Pre-Jingle Ball Event the All Access Lounge. After braving the chilly New York winds on line the crowd was entertained by music performances from the likes of Austin Mahone, Fifth Harmony and more. In addition, the various sponsors of the days’ events set up booths on the main level to share new products, services and engage the people in a number of fun holiday themed activities and giveaways. Above on the 2nd level, Duane Reade introduced an entire floor of new products set to hit their stores for the new year. It was the #DRJingle event not to be missed.
I was fortunate enough to be covering one of my personal favorite brands, AXE. Their body washes and body sprays are a must have for me. I recently picked up their newest shower scents from their Apollo line which they had on display too. Let me not forget to mention their mini travel sized units. These are a must in carry on travel bags. AXE also had a special set up for the All Access Lounge to feature their new Hair styling products. These were made available for the crowd to try out via their on site stylist. The AXE team really did their part to ensure the freshness of NY with all the mini body spray sample they gave out. Anyone that’s used the train system can appreciate this.
On a serious note, AXE also gave a sneak preview of their premium line that will be debuting in 2014. With plans to expand products into higher end markets it looks like another big year is on deck for the AXE brand within your local Duane Reade stores.
With the Apollo Astronaut making his way throughout the venue I definitely think that AXE made a lasting impression on the crowd. In addition they were the only exclusively men geared brand on the floor so AXE was the go to vendor for all the guys in attendance. With Brands like Cocoa Coca, Dunkin Donuts, Vitamin Water, Ultimate Ears and more in the building it was a great way to standout with an entire floor exclusively for the many products destined for the Duane Reade stores. All Access Lounge was an amazing collection of media, music and merchandise and from the excitement I saw on the faces of the people in attendance you can see why people look forward to this every year!!
Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai
Lessons & Motivation From The Launch of Beyonce Part 2 “Silent Bomb”
Early today I touched on the motivational force of Beyonces’ mega successful new album releases which was completely out of the usual mainstream music industry matrix. As I’ve been speaking to people about the various layers of this event there is something that I notice is being over looked. In this age of over exposure, behind the scenes studio session instagram pix and teasers for trailers for videos. Beyonce also showed us just how efficient and effective the art of stealth still is.
I can not think of an album that hasn’t leaked to the Internets at least 48 hrs before the official release date. Yet in the same year the Carter couple Jay-Z and Beyonce both released new music that escaped the fate of most albums. The key to that was simple, silence. It’s difficult for material to get leaked when no one knows it exists. I remember in my old hip hop promo days how music ended up in my hands just because I happened to be in the right place and right time. Artists send music out for reviews and with content being digital it’s a simple “hey check this out and don’t say anything.” email away from your new project being global before it’s time. When your material is true quality you don’t need a bunch of other people to cosign.
Bringing it down to the independent level far too many people who are trying to bring their visions to the people over expose themselves. They try to produce this mock reality TV existence and they often end up spending more time producing material for the outward image that working on the art. Going against the grain requires focus and concentration. You can only split that so many ways before your work suffers. Close your circle, embrace silence and isolation. Prioritize the business at hand to deliver the best you can. Don’t talk about it, be about it. Today everyone gives these industry cliche’ lines about dropping “classics” and “taking it to the next level” and then they drop a dud. Separate from the hype and see how your results improve.
When done perfectly maybe you too can drop the ultimate Silent Bomb. Curious what the silent bomb is?? Hit the Jump and see the moment that Bey’s bomb went off.
Continue reading Lessons & Motivation From The Launch of Beyonce Part 2 “Silent Bomb”
Lessons & Motivation From The Launch of Beyonce Part 1
At this point the previous sales week is over and the first weekend of the Beyonce Surprise Project is in the books. 72 hours that felt like much more as the consumer base purchased, played and raved about Beyonces’ new material. The album unexpectedly dropped at midnight this past Friday and almost sailed completely under my radar. It wasn’t until I saw an increasing wave of Beyonce images on social media that I looked to see what had happened. Now I watch with intense curiosity as this all plays out. What will the numbers be when the iTunes exclusive period ends this week. Then how many more units will get moved for android and through physical copies. I threw out a rough guess that the results would be Gold (500,00 copies sold) by today and Platinum (1,000,000 copies sold) by the end of the week. Looks like I may have under estimated this. Going into yesterday 550,000 copies had been sold with expectations of over 600,000 by the conclusion of the day. That’s an amazing feat especially that it is only domestic at this point. My biggest thought and question is now this. What does this mean for the people? What lessons can be learned from this?
Hit the Jump for some of the take away from this weekends events…..
Continue reading Lessons & Motivation From The Launch of Beyonce Part 1
My Blogging Evolution 2013
It’s hard to believe that 2013 is less than 3 weeks from completion. To say that times flies would be the most grand of understatements. So much has changed for me with blogging and it all happened off such an unexpected interaction that I can only thank god for bringing me to this point in the grand plan of my life. My blogging year 2013 opened up back on the Blvd, my personal blog, with the following statement.
One of my biggest my personal goals for this year is to truly hold folk accountable for how they act towards me. As I gear my energy towards a number of major goals I just can’t have the fickle attitudes around me. It’s not a statement that I want friendships to end or anything like that but the fact is everyone doesn’t deserve the same level of “ME” that I constantly give to them. It’s one thing to be a busy person, I can understand that as much as anyone but it’s when folk clearly have their priorities elsewhere that a change must come. The flow of energy needs to be a balanced cycle yet It’s often steadily supplied by me while it gets returned in smaller random spurts from others. The true problem in this equation is ME.
That was on Jan 6th. I was making personal call of accountability for myself. I decided to more forcefully control the things I allow to happen around me on a personal and professional . It’s funny going back to read this because this is exactly how the year turned out. In regards to blogging my year was pretty standard going into the late spring months. I was blogging on my personal platform and contributing on other sites, for free at that. Things would change when fellow blogger Sharelle D Lowery of www.ClassyBlackGirl.com would contact me about a life changing opportunity. First she opened up her blog to me to add a male touch and then she directed to the blogging collective Social Fabric. SoFab ushered me into the world of paid brand blogging.
Things have been moving up since that point with my invitation into the Duane Reade VIP blogging team and many new campaigns are lining themselves up for me going into 2014.
As I look forward into the new year I see the unification of my travel work with Nomadness and my blogging career. I see the further growth and establishment of the Social Media Samurai brand in blogging and social media. After years in the traditional 9-5 work force I’m truly putting down the foundation to create a more mobile, location independent, fulfilling career. I have events marked off and goals listed that I’m so looking forward to accomplishing.
It’s amazing how one minute things are going about their normal course then something unexpected happens and the game changes. Doors are opening that I didn’t even know existed for me in blogging. Now I just keep focused and keep growing, moving towards the future with faith and excitement.
Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai
Obama Selfie: Internet Comedy or Lazy Media
By this point everyone has seen the images of the U.S President Barack Obama and his social interaction during the Nelson Mandela tribute and memorial service. When I first saw the pictures Tuesday morning I had no real reaction to it. I saw a few of the expected online attempts at comedy nothing unexpected. By the time the afternoon had arrived I was seeing all types of nonsense being super imposed and applied to these images. What really bothered me and made me decide to actually write on this was that it wasn’t just folk on the online pushing for LOLs but it was major media outlets running with this non story. It really made me ask to you people not need context to anything anymore?
I saw people go with the anger black woman jokes. “Oh I know Michelle told him about flirting with that white woman.” I Saw people go with the look at what Obama is doing disrespecting Mandela’s memory. I even saw someone try to compare Jay’z dedication to Mandela during his tour as being a bigger show of respect than Obama. Now I don’t look to insult people but the level of ridiculousness I see, predictable nonsense is baffling. It’s usually why I step aside and let the ADD era run its 48-72 hour course.
At this point even the photographer himself has come forward to say that it wasn’t that serious and that all parties involved were fine. So did people really ignore the speech that Obama gave at this same event? Did people simply not know that people from across the world were all intermingling and taking pictures at the 4+ hour event? Did folk really think the memes were funny? I know some may say I just don’t have a sense of humor but I’d ask how many times can you laugh at the some played out narrative/concept? And more importantly than that, what possessed the New York Post to try to make a front page story out of this? Wait, it’s the Post…….never mind.
I know what these Internets do and for the most part I step outside the cycle and just observe. But every some often I see something that goes a little too far and I have to give it a blank stare. Then I wonder why common sense didn’t get interjected somewhere along the way. Am I asking too much? Should I not expect people to be able to say no to lazy media?
Jason Francis | The Social Media Samurai