Reflective Response to a Refresher Guide to the Social Networks That Matter Most
By Toochikwu Udeinya

Though social media is not a new idea to me, I consider myself a low-entry social media expert however, after reading this appendix, I have incorporated a few nuggets to my tool box. As mentioned in the appendix, Facebook is currently the elephant of social media with more than a billion monthly users, 680 million mobile users (Facebook Statistics, 2014); with this much potential one cannot ignore the opportunity in utilizing Facebook as marketing tool. Everyone uses social media differently and I agree that each platform is uniquely useful in its own right. One thing that the appendix did not touch on is the synergy in utilizing all the four main pegs of social media together (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube). All four social media tools could be linked together in some way form or fashion that will draw customers to each sight without the need to force the process. For example, Instagram alone utilizes picture sharing that ask the user before each post if they want to also share their photos on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare, and Flickr.

How much influence is social media having on the control our lives is something that has come up lately. Recently Facebook conducted a psychological experiment with the help of researchers at Cornell University and the University of California, San Francisco on 700,000 users. Their research was to test whether emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading people to experience the same emotions without their awareness (Grohol, 2014). The results were published by Princeton University in March 25, 2014. The results were that emotional contagion occurs without direct interaction between people (exposure to a friend expressing an emotion is sufficient), and in the complete absence of nonverbal cues (Kramer, Guillory, & Hancock, 2014). What this boils down to is that social media can and has played a major part in how we as a society are progressing, negatively or positively is up to debate. One could be upset about this study; I on the other hand think that it is just the natural progression. I believe that the media that antecedent social media did the same thing. Newspaper was notorious for this when it had to grab readers attention what did it do, they published an emotional influential front-page article. Rarely do you see a front-page article that did not play to ones emotions. What followed was TV News and Shows, which was even more emotional influential than Newspapers. With social media outlets we have the ability to pick and choice which twitter feeds to follow to get our news, which friends we intend to stay connected too, which pictures we pay closer attention too; we have that ability to cut off what we want and pay attention to what we think is important.

Marketing through social media outlets is in my opinion the best outlet for this current generation. Every interview that I have conducted with owners of breweries have indicated that without social media marketing they would not be in their current financial position. The ability to reach so many people without emptying there bank account is a blessing for entrepreneurs. Even major corporations like Pepsi, Nike, BestBuy, etc. utilize social media to reach as many customers as they can. Some of these corporations even pay individuals to post things associated with their product on their personnel accounts.
The appendix described the usefulness of YouTube very well; I agree that the content posted is more important than the production quality. How many YouTube sensations have been created by spontaneous events? They have a Wikipedia page dictated to YouTube personalities, some of these personalities have become extremely famous. How many famous acts where found on YouTube i.e. Justin Bieber. So just having the ability to showcase my company in a free spirted way is something that I can’t wait to do. I plan to document my struggles, my enjoyments, and my successes through video documentation and interactions, which I will post on YouTube. As mentioned earlier, the ability to entwine all social media is available with YouTube; by posting YouTube videos in Facebook, Twitter, and my blogs I can bring attention to my other dedicated media sources.
I have not utilized Linkedin as effectively as I should; it is mostly because I reluctantly felt the need too until I started taking this course. I still haven’t engaged in it potential as I should. After conducting the assignment with the screencast I can truly say that Linkedin might be the most influential tool that I could use in attracting the right business connect that my company will need to succeed. The ability to reach bar tenders, restaurant owners, and bar/club owners through a professional setting is the true essence of Linkedin.

As fads come and go social media outlets is here to stay. We are being engulfed in the social media affect; as more and more technology integrate our surroundings and react to our emotions, social media will be there reacting and capturing our lives. There is an ethical part with the direction of social media that makes people uneasy however, just like the government becoming increasingly more attune to our lives it might be a necessity. I would rather let the CIA/FBI monitor my phone calls than be worried about a car bomb going off outside my house. I would rather watch a commercial that deals with what I enjoy than watch a needless advertisement that has nothing to do with my interests.

Just my thoughts!

References
Facebook Statistics. (2014, July 1). Retrieved from Statistic Brain: http://www.statisticbrain.com/facebook-statistics/
Grohol, J. M. (2014, July 10). Emotional Contagion on Facebook? More Like Bad Research Methods. Retrieved from World of Psychology: http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2014/06/23/emotional-contagion-on-facebook-more-like-bad-research-methods/
Kramer, A. D., Guillory, J. E., & Hancock, J. T. (2014, March 25). Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks. Retrieved from PNAS: http://www.pnas.org/content/111/24/8788.full