Need All The Help I Can Get

Fun fact about me: My biggest fear in the world is public speaking. So let’s just say I wasn’t delighted when I learned that we had a final presentation in the class I’m doing this blog for. Now I’m on the search for anything and everything to help me give a great presentation to a class. Heck, I just want to get it over with!

For my fourth Linky Love post I chose one with five tips to make a “sizzling” presentation by Mark Schaefer. After reading his five tips I translated them to represent the exact situation I am in.

1. My story is Target. Don’t forget it.

2. Care about each important point because you never know which one your audience will remember.

3. Don’t do a boring PowerPoint template. Just, don’t.

4. Pictures help with the retention of information. Kill them with kindness. I mean images.

5. Don’t rush. Breathe.

If I put the effort into the visuals of my presentation and practice the material I know I’ll be confident. I’ll fight the urge to talk reallysuperfastsopeoplecan’tunderstandme. I will slow down and let the material speak for itself. I know that Target is an amazing company that has done some great things for the community and I want everyone to know that.

Photo Credit by Blogger Angie Dudley

A Tweet Slam Dunk

No one did it like MJ! Photo from Pinterest

My third Linky Love post is about a favorite topic of mine: basketball. This weekend is the All-Star Weekend for the National Basketball Association. It’s a time when every team takes a break from regular games and some players get elected to participate in certain events. This year the weekend is in Orlando, Florida.

Players can be voted into the All-Star game, the Dunk Contest, the Skills Challenge, the 3-Point Contest, Shooting Stars and The Rising Stars Challenge. The majority of these events find a winner easily depending on the score of the game or the amount of shots made. The Skills Challenge is an obstacle course so the fastest time wins. The Dunk Contest has always been the most intriguing of the events because the victor was decided on a panel of judges. Mostly NBA experts or past players, they judged each dunk on a numerical system.

This year, however, is a new year. The NBA, like the rest of the world, understands social media. They know that fans Tweet and post about the events and have opinions to share. The article I read today (by Sam Laird) talked about how, for the very first time, the Slam Dunk Contest won’t have a panel of judges. The winner will be decided by you, the fans. Email, Tweet, and text who you think should win…and they very well could.

I’ve played basketball all my life and have been an NBA fan since I can remember. Immediately I see a couple problems with this new method. Sure, it’s innovative and it involves the fans like they’ve never been involved before. But we aren’t experts (as much as we wish we were). We are swayed by popular opinion. The writer joked that thank goodness Knick’s point guard Jeremy Lin wasn’t competiting. He’s right…that guy is so popular right now for how he’s performed in the past seven games that people would probably say he’s the best dunker for no reason at all. Also, if you’re a diehard fan for a certain team you may only vote for the dunker who represents your team. Or on the flip, you may hate a candidate for being on a rival team. Neither of those reasons have anything to do with the quality of the dunks that these men will be doing.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure excited to watch this contest. I may just Tweet about it!

Does Pinterest Make You Shop?

For my second Linky Love assignment I chose the article “Pinterest Becomes Top Traffic Driver for Retailers” by Lauren Indvik. I have my own Pinterest and I had always wondered if there was a direct correlation between “pinning” and actions in life.

While I usually a pin pictures of places I would love to go, animals I would love to adopt, and funny sayings or jokes. But a majority of pins are of clothes and interior design ideas and that could be a huge market for retailers. Even if the original item was too expensive for the average shopper, anything similar could also be a target for consumers.

What concerns me is that this movement might cause retailers to not be transparent. Employees could purposely post pictures of merchandise of the company so that it circulates on Pinterest. Companies can stack the odds in favor of themselves. But it’s great advertising for companies because they can put out one or two pictures and let all the viewers on Pinterest show it around to their followers without doing work at all.

Added 2/11: I just read an interesting article that says the exact opposite of the article I read earlier. This article by Martha White claims that seeing the merchandise on Pinterest would make you not want to buy it. Why? Because pinning the pictures of all these things that we want somehow feels like we already bought it and have it, and so the urge is gone. You can “own” these things on your site but not actually spend the money.

Blogging For a Job

For the first Linky Love article assignment I chose to read “7 Reasons Every Job Seeker Should Blog” by Mark Schaefer because I’m always looking for tips on how to find a job when I graduate.

After reading the seven tips I was surprised and pleased that I got something out of each one of them.

I learned that blogging is basically a pre-interview where I can show what interests me about the industry I’m in while also proving that I know what to look for. When I decide the topic that I want to write about I know I have to master that topic before I put my opinion about it on my blog.

The article taught me that blogging is very similar to LinkedIn or other community sites. You can build a professional connection just by blogging or responding to other blogs. My blog is part of my personal brand and employers will see that likely before they see me. Being able to blog and have an online presence could set me apart from another job applicant.

The most impressive part of this read was the author himself. He responded to every comment that his post received. It shows respect and that he is genuinely eager to help people understand why blogging is so important.

photo credit by DonkeyHotey