social media

Tech Thursday: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle (Your Marketing Content)

You know all that work you just put into putting something online? Let’s ride the wave a bit and do a bit more work for a lot more impact. Whether you’re making a video, blog post, newsletter, or promotional image, we have some ideas on getting more “bang for your buck”- that is, making the most out of things you’ve already spent a lot of time and energy working on.

Have you seen marketing content re-used in a way you thought was interesting? Any ideas for a topic you’d like to learn more about? Let us know!

Tech Thursday: Running an Instagram Contest

This week, we thought it’d be fun to chat a bit about Instagram contests! These are great ways to increase your exposure as a business and letting people connect. There are a few different types of contests you can set up:

1) Challenges (either “one and done” or something that’s ongoing) (Example 1 from Running on Om and Example 2 from Mashable/Hilton)

2) Product Selfies (Exampe 3 from Om Nom Nom Inc– this contest makes me want a) this t-shirt and b) cookies).

3) Reposting.

A few things to keep in mind when running the contest: types of images you want shared, how they get attributed (coming up with a specific hashtag), and how long you want the contest to run. We’ll discuss these in further detail/with examples in the video!

Have you seen any cool Instagram contests you want to share with us? Got ideas for our next Thursday? Leave a comment or fill out our contact form ( and tell us about it!

PimplePopper, Stretchmarks, NoMakeup- Normalizing The Human Body

At first, I think some of us were worried the internet was going to give us all unrealistic body expectations. Photoshopping, #thinspiration, and just the amount of images there are have done some of that. Listening to a WNYC program about what the internet/social media has done with respect to eating disorders shows this unrealistic end of the spectrum pretty well.

As a backlash to this, I’ve noticed more recently is a wave of events moving towards the other end of the spectrum. Not just “I like who I am” but “Here’s my flabby stomach”. This natural evolution seems to be a combination of things happening at the same time.

Medical Social Media: Figure 1 and Dr. Pimple Popper

I heard a podcast about ‘instagram for doctors’ and had to check it out. Figure 1 is an app where doctors can upload photos in an attempt to not only amuse each other but share information.


Suddenly rashes aren’t something terrible and horrible but something hundreds of people are posting and commenting about.

Since I’m not fantastic with blood (but mainly not fantastic with eyeballs), I wanted to find some way to be medically fascinated online. Enter Dr. Pimple Popper.


Slight background: Now I had TERRIBLE acne as a teenager/young adult. And I know everyone says that but I really did. Like count to 100 pimples and keep going. I was super self conscious about it and eventually went on Accutane in my mid 20s to get rid of them.

There is something very satisfying to me about these people being free of their blackheads. Is it because of my background? Is it because my work is do digital and watching someone do something start to finish physically is satisfying? Is it just generally mesmorizing? I’ll never know. (The ‘Mr. Wilson’ video series in particular is amazing if you want to see this in action.)

Yes, a whole Youtube channel with millions of views of people watching skin extractions. Did you think we’d ever see this day? Medical stuff, even weird medical stuff, is getting more normal to see.

Normalizing Human Experiences: Stretchmarks and Breastfeeding

If we step away from the ‘medical’ camp, we also see regular people and celebrities beginning to draw attention to less than desirable or traditionally ‘controversial’ things.

Chrissy Teigen has famously recently posted this photo of herself on Instagram:


I noticed bruises but she captioned the photo: “Bruises from bumping kitchen drawer handles for a week. Stretchies say hi!There is an Instagram account called ‘Love Your Lines’ with over 100,000 followers and the ability to submit your own stretch mark photos. And if you think of any traditionally negative body trait, I bet there is an Instagram movement to flaunt it.

Similarly, not just parts of bodies but body processes/activities like breastfeeding or getting your period unexpectedly have been getting more normalized, online and offline. Model Nicole Trunfio breastfed her son during a cover shoot for Elle Australia and they decided to turn it into a subscriber only cover.


It’s brave to like yourself. But it’s brave to say “I have this thing that isn’t sexy/beautiful but it’s part of me so I love it.”

#NoMakeup And Posting Less Than Perfect Stuff About Ourselves

For years, women have been posting their own #nomakeup selfies (though there was an uptick recently when Amy Schumer released her boy band parody song ‘Girl You Don’t Need Makeup’.)


Rather than women calling each other out on social media (though I know that still happens), it seems more like people are moving towards posting more normal things about themselves. I mean I’m not necessarily going to show you all my leg stubble but if someone takes a picture of me at the beach, I am perfectly fine with it being posted. Because we live in a climate where it has become more and more accepted that ALL of us are online visually, not just the wealthy and beautiful with modeling contracts.

This culture has resulted in an internet of diverse bodies and experiences we can easily reference. And as a society, it’s nice to not just see what media companies put out there in the way of images and messages. Teenage Nicole would have appreciated  seeing some people like her but Adult Nicole appreciates that the internet has gotten us there.

Unplugging or Overcorrecting? Online Life in Moderation

Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of things go by about “unplugging” or generally disconnecting from technology. As a person who spends a considerable amount of time on computers/the internet personally and professionally, I understand why this is appealing. But, as a person with a tendency toward addictive behaviors, part of me wonders if this cycle of adamant unplugging symbolizes a binge/purge cycle of sorts (one that I get caught up in pretty frequently). Does it have to be an all or nothing, black and white situation, or is there a happy medium?

It turns out, there’s A LOT of information that starts up around 2012 that discusses societal dependence on technology/social media, and their detrimental effects on all aspects of our health.

Psychological Health: The attachment to social media and electronic devices is thought to breed negative emotions, including (but not limited to) envy, jealousy, anger, sadness, and fear. Recently, social media has been named the culprit in a rise of eating disorders in the UK. There’s even studies that equate social media addiction with drug and alcohol addiction. Our brains think we’re reaping rewards when we scroll through our newsfeed, so we get in the habit of doing it because apparently it feels good, to a point.


And yet…this article presents a counter argument that suggests our unhappiness comes from the way we’re using social media. If used in a different way, it can actually be beneficial to our mental health. There are blogs, forums, and other online resources that someone who is struggling (but not quite ready to reach out to someone close yet), which can be encouraging and act as a nudge in the right direction. Technology can provide opportunities for outreach and research, and there are even games designed to stimulate certain areas of the brain (creating to help combat symptoms of depression/anxiety).

Physical Health: I’m not an M.D., so I can’t tell you whether sleeping with your phone on your pillow is going to give you a brain tumor, but I can speculate that it isn’t healthy to do so.

Look Up & Away. In 2002, my 7th grade class in Milbridge was fortunate enough to be among the first round of students in the state to receive Mac laptops as part of the MLTI grant. This was also the year that my eyesight went from ok to practically non-existent. That was the year I had to get glasses for nearsightedness. I’m sure there were other factors contributing to this blindness onset, but as with any average 12 y/o, eyeball straining wasn’t on my radar of “Things I need to concern myself with.” Give your eyes some breaks in between typing and

Stretch and Stand: Studies are now showing that sitting for hours on end is actually pretty terrible for you. Go figure, huh? For those of us with jobs requiring a lot of desk time, it can be difficult to not be sitting all day. Some are able to combat this with standing workstations, others make a point to get up and walk around to break up the day.

If standing/moving isn’t possible for you to build into your work life, take a look at some stretches and yoga poses that help ease tension in your back, shoulders, and neck.

Perhaps ironic, I saw this go by on Facebook.

Perhaps ironic, I saw this go by on Facebook.

There isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” solution here (but hey, is there ever?). Chances are, if your relationship with technology/social media feels unhealthy, you’re the only one who can say for sure. If you’re checking your ex’s-best friend’s-step sister’s-dog’s- uncle-twice removed’s Facebook page more than once a day, perhaps a little social media detox would be a good idea. And yes, it’s kind of rude to snapchat your best friend about the latest Kardashian drama during family dinner at your Grandma’s house (quadruple point reduction if your phone isn’t even on silent). Think of some ways to reevaluate your relationship with social media/technology. For instance, as a kid my mom imposed a one-hour per day t.v. rule on us (and we lived to tell the tale). Maybe you put time limits on your technological devices, or only allow yourself to watch Netflix when you’re at the gym (which is also a great workout motivator). Maybe you’re the type of person who needs to detox for a bit and slowly reintegrate things back into your life. It’ll probably take some experimenting before you find feel like you’ve found a happy medium, but ideally you’ll be much happier overall once you’re there.

Tech Thursday: Health and Social Media

Since around 2012, there have been an increasing amount of studies/articles going by about social media’s harmful impact on our psychological/emotional health. Even technology in general gets a bad rap for causing these and physical ailments. Most of the proposed solutions involve detoxing or unplugging altogether, but what about finding a happy medium? That’s what this Tech Thursday is about! A solo host by Kassie this week.

Anonymous Social Networks 101

The internet began as an anonymous place. Chat rooms asked us ‘a/s/l’ and I’m sure I am not the only one who pretended to be a completely different age, sex, and location than I was. There was something about trying on a new identity.

As social networks using our real names came into play, it was harder to be anonymous. Your potential employer or your mom could be looking at what you just said or shared.

It was only a matter of time before the internet cycled back, recoiled from too much sharing. Apps and websites where you can be anonymous have come back into popularity.

We’ve previously blogged about YikYak but there are a couple of other anonymous sites to know about:


So this network combines anonymous with location data. So you can share your secret thought and other people can like or comment… but you can also see other people’s secrets that are near you (1 mile radius, 5 mile radius, etc.) The secrets range from silly to serious:


whisperconfession2Something about having the image with the thought makes them stand out a bit, nice to read on a mobile device. And since this is an app, that makes sense.



Reddit is a bit of a longer form social network with writing and links. You can see what’s trending overall by going to the homepage:

The more interesting part of Reddit though are the subreddits. For example, you can join a community about Game of Thrones (at and discuss you interest in this show in detail with people all over the world.

Clearly works well if you are more verbose, or want to share a link and get comments on it.

Some people chose to have an active anonymous account while others use ‘throwaway’ accounts for a one time confession.

Anonymous social networks are similar to regular social networks:

  • Typically ordered by most recently updated content
  • Can participate on your phone only for some, others you can access on your computer too
  • You can like/heart/upvote things that you like to show support
  • You can leave comments for more detailed feedback.

Of course, sometimes anonymity brings out the worst in people in the way of cyberbullying but honestly, in these communities, I have found mostly support for my ideas too weird or dark to share on regular networks. (I know it’s sad but I used to be a little nervous to go on Reddit but, much like staying away from the seedy streets in your city, is a nice place for the most part of you don’t go searching for the bad stuff.)

As we figure out what is and isn’t acceptable to share with our real life friends on social media, I see the popularity of these sites growing. I personally love Reddit because there’s no real ads, no messaging, and I can just browse information… and contribute when I feel like. Personally I appreciate that because of the internet, there is a lid for every pot.

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