Communicating With Your College Student in the Digital Age

http://i1219.photobucket.com/albums/dd427/sankerbrand/College%20Move/DSCN0142.jpgOnce upon a time fully-loaded family station wagons deposited fresh-faced first year students on the steps of their new college home.  After a quick hug, maybe a photo on their 35mm camera, and a couple of tears, mom and dad drove off into the quickening sunset.  Except for the occasional pay-phone or in-room call, communication ceased until the first big holiday break.  Junior went on to acclimate to his new surroundings and make life-changing decisions on his own (Do I drop Calc I?  Should I sign up for alternative spring break?). Parents went on to adjust to being empty nesters or devote more attention to the ones still left in the nest.

Today’s social-media infused world leaves contemporary parents with a completely different set of circumstances.  No longer do we have huge absences in quality communication, but we can speak with our kids easily at any time and watch their lives unfold in real time on Instagram and Twitter.

I personally traveled 500 miles away to attend a Jesuit university in the Midwest.  It was a rare occasion for me to have any direct communication with my family.  The ability to call was always there, but the need was not a pressing one.  My peer group was of the belief that we were independently taking care of business for ourselves.  Today, the 18 year old who told me at the close of Family Orientation that she would not be calling us, has maintained a pretty strong connection via iPhone calls,  DMs on Twitter, Facebook comments, and Instagram tags.  I guess you would say we have a pretty close connection if she actually tags me on Instagram.  We have learned of her test grades as she is walking back from the professor’s office; found out about her selection as a student ambassador for the school via FaceTime, and have seen super-magnified slide photos of the fruit fly brain research she was working on via text.

While social media has maintained a window into her world, it is has been purely just that: a window.  We have let her initiate communication with us and celebrate her successes while keeping the conversation/Face-Time, Texting, etc. short.  Where social media broke through the looking glass of voyeurism and transformed into a crucial assist was when she was stranded in the airport of one of largest cities in the U.S.

Photo by C. Kenzie Corbin -tumblr_nhprowVbH61u7rxrvo1_1280

She had her cell phone, and despite existing on low battery, was able to plug into one of the powering stations in the terminal. She called to let me know her situation, and I immediately left my business lunch to get in front of a screen larger than my cell phone to figure out how to get her from point A to point B in the midst of a major storm.  I could easily check websites for airlines, trains, busses and taxis as well as be in communication with her school, all while keeping her on the line.  In the end we figured it out.  She took the first cab ride of her life on a 2+hr trip with a driver who spoke very little English.  I crossed my fingers and hoped she would arrive in the right place.  She did.

Image by Michelle Beckham
Photo of FaceTime session

Times have surely changed in terms of parent-college student communications and I for one think that could be a good thing.  I guess we can say that the closing of the SUV hatch does not signify the end of the relationship.

Speaking from the sociological side of social media- Cheers to you!

Michelle

People Behaving Badly

Monday, April 6, 2015 It's Opening Day for the Cincinnati Reds. They open the season against the Pittsburg Pirates The Great American Ballpark in downtown Cincinnati. The photo is shot from the Great American Tower at Queen City Square.  The Enquirer/ Liz Dufour
Monday, April 6, 2015
The photo is shot from the Great American Tower at Queen City Square.
The Enquirer/ Liz Dufour

Like it or not, we live in an era where our private and public conversations can become instant fodder for the media monsters. Our thoughts, whether consciously or unconsciously spoken, are ingested and churned out into a multitude of managed social media platforms and carried along by the viral river of instant sharing.

Two recent examples of people who “went off” in public with the cameras rolling are Cincinnati Reds Manager, Bryan Price and Nancy Gordeuk,  the Principal of TNT Academy in Lilburn, Georgia.  I would imagine that both are very familiar with the media and the repercussions that could occur if their words were to become ‘the shot heard round the internet’. Despite this awareness, their innate behavior reared its head and plunged them forward.

Reds Manager, Bryan Price erupted in a series of F-bombs as he shared his frustration with media leaks about his team.  Ms. Gordeuk  lost her cool and reverted to racist speech, “Look who’s leaving … all the black people”, after forgetting the Valedictory address and dealing with families who did not want to remain after the graduation ceremony was completed to hear the speech. In the school situation, I get the impression that the principal is inherently racist and losing her cool allowed those private thoughts to bubble up into public words and actions.  You can watch the video and judge for yourself.

No matter whether these were personality aberrations or part of Mr. Price and Ms. Gordeuk’s  regular behavior patterns, their words were captured for all to hear and make judgment upon their personal brands. Everyone should follow good reputation management principles to monitor their brand and be aware of how they will be perceived. With apps like Periscope, tweeting live streaming video and sound recording devices like Kapture, memorializing our words in bite-size segments, one just might go viral without a marketing plan. Better make sure the product is a good one or you may end up stating “the devil made me do it” on national media.

You can find more information on social media here.

Mea Culpa & Sociological Side of Social Media

Michelle Beckham's Blog- post on being AWOL

My sincerest apologies for letting this blog lay shuttered and gathering dust for such a long time.  As many business owners know (especially service providers), the first order of operations is to serve your clients. Unfortunately, I have been extremely busy at C3. Creating Connections Consulting, LLC assisting some amazing businesses in tightening up their social media marketing strategy; creating new training materials for our workshop series,  staying on top of the latest in the digital industry; and doing the occasional speaking gig. Throw in life and I had very little time for writing.

I have to be honest, this truly pained me. I am a writer at a heart and have been at the practice since I could hold one of those large yellow pencils and put words to lined paper as a kid. I have been published in several magazines and news stories and am a co-author of a social media book.  Once upon a time I was writing for four different blogs and working on a suspense novel.

I’m carving out time into my schedule to return to this practice that I have loved so much. I hope to continue to share my personal perspective on all things digital here in this space. If you are looking for more hard-hitting posts on social media best practices, you can find them on my C3 Blog here.  This space is for me to examine digital through my eyes and to view the world through the sociological side of social media that we are all living through.

I’m so glad to be back!

Maximizing LinkedIn for You & Your Business

“Maximizing LinkedIn for You and Your Business”:  This 2 hr seminar on April 10th is for users ready to leverage the power of LinkedIn Marketing with tools and applications to help you reach your personal and business objectives.  We will cover all of the latest profile changes introduced for 2013 and how they enhance your online brand. Learn how to optimize your profile for search engines so that you can appear in top search results. Bonus 30 minute session on marketing with LinkedIn Pages for your company follows.  4/10 from 2:00-4:00/4:30 at the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce.  For more info and to register click HERE.

C3 gifts one Free LinkedIn Profile Review each month. February winner:  Chrissann Ruehle
C3 gifts one Free LinkedIn Profile Review each month. February winner: Chrissann Ruehle

Enter the monthly drawing  for a LinkedIn Profile Make-over and 30 minute phone consult HERE.

Visit our website for more information on strategic social media marketing services provided by C3:  HERE

Social Media Marketing Seminars Coming to the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce

C3 Social Media Marketing Seminars in Cincinnati
C3 Social Media Marketing Seminars in Cincinnati

C3. Creating Connections Consulting, in partnership with the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce, is bringing two key social media for business seminars to the Anderson Center in March and April of 2013.

Join C3 and the AACC on Wednesday, March 13th for “Maximizing Social Media Marketing for your Business: An Introduction to Digital” from 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. at the Anderson Center in Anderson Township (7850 Five Mile Road, Cincinnati, OH  45230).

 “Maximizing LinkedIn” will be held at the same location on Wednesday, April 10th from 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. There will be a FREE 30 minute bonus seminar on Marketing with LinkedIn Company Pages from 4:00-4:30 p.m.

Join social media strategist and former P&G marketer, Michelle Beckham-Corbin as she takes the class from possibilities to execution steps.  Register early as space is limited. We will be in the large conference room of the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce located in the Anderson Center on Five Mile Road.

Register for the Social Media Marketing Seminar here: 

Register for the LinkedIn Seminar here:

 Or Call C3 at 513-445-2180 for more information.

www.CreatingConnectionsConsulting.com

Here’s what others are saying about Michelle’s seminars:

“Michelle is a high-energy person who is exudes a passion for business and personal development. Her enthusiasm for utilizing social media as a tool for strategic marketing is contagiously energizing.

Having graduated with an undergraduate and MBA degree from Xavier, Michelle is continually seeking opportunities to give back to the university. Recently she demonstrated her expertise in strategic marketing and social media by presenting her methodology to university students, alumni, faculty, and business partners during the 2nd Annual “Career Campaign” offered by the Professional Development Center in the Williams College of Business. As a strong and engaging presenter Michelle quickly connected with attendees as she walked them through a step by step plan for developing their on-line presence. Michelle’s outreach to attendees continues beyond the classroom when she offers her contact information and urges others to get LinkedIn with her.”

~Cheryl Wilson, Career Development Coordinator, Williams College of  Business- Xavier University.

Free Social Media Marketing Services in Cincinnati

C3 Gives Back Program:

Free Social Media Marketing Services via C3. Creating Connections Consulting, LLC
Pro bono Social Media Services

C3.Creating Connections Consulting to offer pro bono social media marketing and speaking services for non-profits and community organizations in the Cincinnati region in 2013 via the C3 Gives Back Program. Founder Michelle Beckham is a former P&G customer business development and marketing manager who has worked in the digital space since 2005.

One resource that most non-profits and community organizations need, but might not have the budget for is strategic social media marketing consulting or speaker services.  C3 helps businesses and organizations create a strategic marketing plan that integrates the most effective social/digital tools for their call to action and target market and teaches them how to create content and engagement strategies for each platform to build customer relationships and business.

Michelle Beckham speaks all over the region on social media marketing topics, reputation management, online branding and internet safety for children. Follow this link for more information.

It is C3’s corporate philosophy to share knowledge and give back to the community whenever possible. Michelle has been a board member for several Cincinnati organizations including: Authentic Leadership-Cincinnati, New Media Cincinnati, IHM Job Search Group, St. Ursula Academy, the Institute for Social Media at Cincinnati State, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati Communications Commission and the Procter & Gamble Global Alumni Network Speakers Bureau team.

C3 is instituting a formal request program to meet the needs of non-profits and community organizations in 2013.  Organizations can apply for an opportunity each quarter to receive free strategic social media marketing assistance or speaker services for their group.

Requirements:

  • Must be a 501(c)(3) or community organization within the Cincinnati/Dayton/Northern Kentucky area
  • Speaking segment limited to a maximum of two (2) hours
  • Consulting services limited to a maximum of two (2) hours
  • Deadline for first quarter 2013 requests is 12/31/12.

*See website for full information and to register (http://creatingconnectionsconsulting.com)

Share this information with a group that could use some pro bono services.  They will appreciate your gift of information!  Thank you.
 

Examining the sociological side of social media!

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