Whenever a new social media platform emerges and catches on with the public, certain people – called squatters – flock to various handles in a mad grab for @coke, @apple, @nike, and so on.
The idea is that brands ascribe such importance to their social media presence, that they’ll offer thousands for the handle, providing a quick buck for those with fast fingers and early access.
Brands usually do follow the crowd and assign social media managers to populate the new channels that make the cut, often buying their names from these username squatters. (A prominent exception is the owner of @GQ, who kept their Twitter handle, unmotivated by Condé Nast’s offerings, because it’s his nickname).
But recently, some brands have begun to question the value of social media as a place to promote their brand, chasing earned engagement and paying for promotion. What if it’s not worth the drama, expense, and possible unforced errors? What if instead of saying something, you said nothing?
‘Social media doesn’t align’
On Jan. 8, just after the U.S. Capitol was stormed, candle company Keap decided to shut down its social media pages. In an email, the B-corp’s co-founders wrote that keeping a presence didn’t work for the company.
Stephen Tracy, who founded the company with Harry Doull after they worked at Google, wrote to customers that it was trying to foster connections in “our own lives,” and considered roadblocks to this progress.
“The answers are plentiful,” he wrote, “but one common thread often emerges: addictive technology that keeps us distracted and restless.”
Working at Google, Tracy added, provided an inside perspective on the motivations of the tech industry, namely engagement and the endless scroll. These habits were antithetical to the candle company’s mission.
“Armed with an insider’s knowledge of how these addictive technologies affect our lives, Harry and I have often felt that being on social media doesn’t align with what Keap is about as a company,” Tracy wrote to customers, advising them that the company’s newsletter would be their main source of communication henceforth.
“Though we had to overcome some initial uncertainty, we feel far more excitement about reclaiming our time from social media,” Tracy wrote.
Though it’s not common, this thinking isn’t unique to Keap Trader Joe’s, for example, does not have a Twitter account. British cosmetics brand Lush also shut down its Twitter account because of its perceived toxicity of social media.
It also extends beyond social media into the real world. Companies like REI have made the choice to opt out of the traditional Black Friday frenzy, closing its stores and giving employees the day off. Instead REI encourages Americans to #optoutside. If someone wants their stuff they know where to find them. Black Friday and social media are both defaults for many businesses, representing a standard, whose benefit is often unquestioned.
Is it worth it?
In a story in Harvard Business Review from 2017, researchers set out to study the effectiveness of social media in a marketing sense. At the time, 80% of Fortune 500 companies decided to have a Facebook presence, they wrote, with many marketers viewing the number of followers and likes as valuable since someone who follows a brand might be more inclined to make a purchase. They also examined paid promotion, when a company pays the platform to put its post in front of a group of users.
“The results were clear: Social media doesn’t work the way many marketers think it does,” the authors wrote. “The mere act of endorsing a brand does not affect a customer’s behavior or lead to increased purchasing, nor does it spur purchasing by friends.”
In other words, customers follow brands – brands don’t create new customers by adding follows.
The main takeaway from that study was that branded content can work well, but that companies ought to think critically about what they’re doing — just like the candle company.
Lauren Mathis, who founded a network of B-corps (companies with a private certification regarding social and environmental responsibility) in New York, told Yahoo Finance that social media has come up frequently in discussions with members, who are trying to be critical about their decisions and their broader impacts.
Mathis said that social media took over so quickly as a default way of operating and people don’t realize the other ways to do businesses until they consider leaving. “There’s this illusion we need it and it’s the only place to do business. I think we just need to break apart that illusion,” she said.
‘RIP Carrie Fisher, you’ll always have the best buns in the galaxy’
It’s not hard to find a list of extremely cringeworthy unforced errors made by companies when it comes to social media. When a brand goes business casual on the internet, it can often result in something “fun,” making mild jokes and ribbing competitors, like when Wendy’s makes fun of other fast-food chains. That might be nice for the brand — somehow, in a goodwill sort of way — but it could easily result in something like Cinnebon’s infamous tweet commemorating the late Carrie Fisher, tweeting “RIP Carrie Fisher, you’ll always have the best buns in the galaxy,” which led, of course, to an apology.
Thus, brands need to evaluate the value-add of their social media presence. What is the upside for the brand? What does this goodwill exactly mean? I, personally, am a big fan of Spark Notes’ Twitter account, but have never used their services and would not (they provide summaries of books to high schoolers who don’t do the reading as well as other study guides). Whatever goodwill the company cultivates will do nothing for its bottom line. The TikTok generation barely even uses Twitter, but the company’s social media managers keep putting delightful videos into my stream. At least for now, this value, whatever it is, outweighs accidentally putting their foot in it, in the company’s view.
This nebulous upside is the case across the board at many companies. More than 326,000 people follow @ExxonMobil on Twitter. Why? Even Salesforce, a B2B company has 537,000 accounts following it. Both have extremely minimal engagement. Are people reading these tweets? Is this necessary? Prominent anti-Twitter thinker Alex Balk, co-founder of the Awl, once gently reminded readers that if important news breaks on Twitter, you’ll find out very soon anyway.
Tesla and Berkshire Hathaway
A famous example of an expensive Twitter mistake was Elon Musk’s “funding secured” tweet in 2018, where he used the weed number (420) and then paid the SEC a fine of $20 million for it.
Musk said it was “worth it” and it’s hard not to believe that it was. The Tesla CEO has since become the world’s richest man, and part of that is due to his social media presence, his pulpit from which he tells it on the mountain to his acolytes — who either buy his cars or buy Tesla stock. Social media is a huge part of that company and its mystique.
But what if he didn’t tweet?
Take Warren Buffett, the “Oracle of Omaha,” whose every word creates headlines just as Musk’s do — even after many decades. When a fake Twitter account emerged in 2018 (almost) bearing his name (“Buffet”), social media went wild with excitement. Kanye West followed the account at the time.
“I just think there’s other things in life I want to do than tweet. I am not that desperate for somebody to hear my opinion,” the real Warren Buffett said at the time, in the aftermath. “I put out an annual report. I do not have a daily view on all kinds of things.”
The few tweets Buffett’s public Twitter has done were executed by a “friend of his,” a spokesperson for Berkshire said at the time.
Not only is this a flex — he’s not thirsty, people — Buffett sees the value in occasional missives rather than a play-by-play, giving him time to refine opinions and really decide what’s worth sharing. And, it makes any communiqué an event.
This same discipline can be applied to the company writ large. Berkshire, which is not consumer facing for the most part, has a website that I could design (the only thing I can do in html is make links and format text) and no social media. (If a squatter has the keys to the @berkshire account on Twitter, they don’t appear to have convinced the company to buy them.)
GLAAD Media Awards presenters support transgender athletes
LOS ANGELES — “Schitt’s Creek” and “The Boys in the Band” were winners at the GLAAD Media Awards, which included soccer’s Ashlyn Harris and Ali Krieger calling for transgender students to be accepted as “part of the team” in sports.
Harris and Krieger, spouses who play for the Orlando Pride and were on the 2019 World Cup-winning U.S. women’s national team, presented an award in Thursday’s virtual ceremony to the film “Happiest Season,” about a lesbian romance.
The couple drew attention to transgender athletes amid widespread efforts to restrict their participation, including a recently signed Mississippi bill that bans them from competing on girls or women’s sports teams. It becomes law July 1.
“Trans students want the opportunity to play sports for the same reason other kids do: to be a part of a team where they feel like they belong,” Krieger said.
Added Harris: “We shouldn’t discriminate against kids and ban them from playing because they’re transgender.”
“Star Trek: Discovery,” “I May Destroy You” and “A Little Late with Lilly Singh” were among the other projects honoured in the pre-taped ceremony hosted by Niecy Nash. It’s available on Hulu through June.
The GLAAD awards, in their 32nd year, recognize what the media advocacy organization calls “fair, accurate, and inclusive” depictions of LGBTQ people and issues. Presenters and winners in this year’s event highlighted priorities including the importance of solidarity and self-respect.
“Friends, I’m so proud to stand with the LGBTQ community tonight, just as the LGBTQ community stands with Black and diverse communities,” said Sterling K. Brown, who presented the outstanding documentary award to “Disclosure.”
The “This Is Us” star, citing the Black Lives Matter and Black Trans Lives Matter movements, said that “we’re going to keep spreading that message of unity and justice until every one of us is safe to live the lives we love.”
JoJo Siwa, the teenage YouTube personality and performer, presented the award for outstanding children’s programming to “The Not-Too-Late Show with Elmo.” She said in January that she’s part of the LGBTQ community.
“I have the best, most amazing, wonderful girlfriend in the entire world who makes me so, so, so happy and that’s all that matters,” Siwa said. ”It’s really cool that kids all around the world who look up to me can now see that loving who you want to love is totally awesome” and should be celebrated.
Other awards went to Sam Smith, who was honoured as outstanding music artist for the album “Love Goes”; Chika, named breakthrough music artist for “Industry Games,” and “We’re Here” won outstanding reality program.
Cast members from “Glee,” including Chris Colfer, Amber Riley and Jane Lynch, paid tribute to Naya Rivera and her character in the series, gay cheerleader Santana Lopez. Rivera, 33, died in an accidental drowning in July 2020.
Lynn Elber, The Associated Press
Source:- Coast Reporter
Social Media Etiquette Review
Despite your best efforts, you may cause someone pain with that Tweet or Facebook post. Here’s a refresher on social media best practices, along with advice for some pandemic-only dilemmas.
In an ideal world, your followers would think every photo, video or thought you post on social media is like a little gift to them. In reality, it’s hard to predict how posts on Instagram, Facebook and other social media will land, especially during the pandemic. After so much loss and isolation over the past year, people are on edge. That vaccine selfie may feel joyous and hopeful to you, but it could be a digital slap in the face to someone who hasn’t received a vaccine shot or who has suffered a grave loss.
“Someone could be experiencing loss in such a way that there’s no way someone else won’t post something that compounds their grief,” said Catherine Newman, who has written the Modern Manners etiquette column for Real Simple magazine for 10 years. “That’s how grief is.”
Still, it’s hard not to overthink things — and to worry that despite your best efforts, you may cause someone pain. Some social media experts say you should review your sharing practices periodically, so here’s a refresher on social media etiquette, along with advice for some pandemic-only situations.
Ask why are you posting.
First, identify your motivations. Are you sharing that picture of the exquisite cake you baked because you want praise, or do you want people to feel bad that what they made themselves wasn’t as good? If it is to receive affirmation, that’s OK. But if you find yourself trying to get all your needs met by social media likes, it might be time to think about what else is missing in your life.
Second, focus on your friends. If you tried to consider every possible person who might be hurt by a post — your seemingly unobjectionable photo of tulips could very well remind a follower of someone they have lost — you might never post anything on social media. But absolutely think about your inner circle carefully.
Ms. Newman, for one, hasn’t posted about her own post-vaccination visits with family because so many in her immediate friend group have lost a parent in the past year. If you’re in a similar situation and you still want to post your vaccine selfie or the first time you’ve hugged your father in a year, consider acknowledging your own good fortune.
“I still appreciate it when people say, ‘We’re so lucky and there’s been so much loss and I’m sorry if you’re experiencing loss,’” said Ms. Newman, whose best friend died of cancer five years ago.
Before you hit “share,” read your words in multiple tones of voice, as different people can interpret the text differently, suggested Diane Gottsman, an etiquette expert and the founder of the Protocol School of Texas, a San Antonio company specializing in corporate etiquette training. If there’s any doubt, add a cue, such as an emoticon, about your tone.
Don’t go low, go high.
If you want to post something negative, keep in mind that what you say or share often says more about you. Disagree (respectfully), but avoid sweeping generalizations about entire groups of people — or about one business based on your interaction with a single employee.
Additionally, remember that any message you share, even with close family members, will be amplified to your entire online community. (The tension may also be amplified around vaccines, health measures and the stress of a not-normal year.) If you are replying to your sister online about something, that doesn’t mean you can speak to her as harshly as you might privately. Ms. Gottsman advises taking a heated family debate offline.
“Don’t start a family feud on social media,” Ms. Gottsman said. “It can affect the next family holiday.”
If you are soliciting donations for a particular cause or charity, or asking for money to pay someone’s rent or medical bills with a GoFundMe campaign, recognize that the financial situations of many people have changed this past year and there may be many other appeals compared to times past. Skip shaming phrases, like “How can you not help this person?” Instead, Ms. Gottsman said, use ones like “If your heart moves you, I’m sharing this.”
Consider your audience.
Think less vigilance is needed, because your text group is small or your settings have been changed to private? Think again. When Heidi Cruz, the wife of Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, shared her family’s plans to flee a devastating winter storm in Texas for a vacation in Mexico, she texted only a small group of neighbors and friends. Screenshots of the messages ended up with journalists. Elaine Swann, an etiquette expert and founder of the School of Protocol in Carlsbad, Calif., points out that it wasn’t just one person who shared the chat with The New York Times; there were others who confirmed it.
“Even if you think it’s just your inner circle, there’s always somebody there who isn’t 100 percent on your team,” she said. “That’s the person who takes the screenshot before you delete whatever it is.”
Ban body-size talk.
Posting about food and fitness may be even more tempting than usual, given that a lot of people have changed what they eat and how much they exercise during the pandemic. But confine your commentary to how these lifestyle changes make you feel, not how they make you look. Among other things, not all people have had the luxury of more time to exercise during the pandemic — or if they did, they might not have had the energy to do so.
Dr. Lindsay Kite is a founder of Beauty Redefined, a nonprofit that promotes body image resilience, and an author of “More Than a Body.” She noted that your “before” photo — talking about how fat you look — may be someone else’s “after.”
If you really want affirmation and accountability for your fitness goals, avoid the sports-bra selfie and posts about body measurements. Instead, Dr. Kite suggested posting a picture of yourself in a blood pressure cuff, or a less body-focused snapshot of you jogging to your favorite coffee shop.
“Loving your body and improving your health doesn’t always lead to a more ideal-looking body,” she said.
Acknowledge your mistakes.
There may be situations in which a post doesn’t land as you had intended. Maybe you shared a photo of a masked-up pandemic wedding, but followers pointed out that attending still involved travel. Or you posted a video of your family’s Easter egg hunt, because all the adults participating had been lucky enough to be vaccinated.
Ask yourself how many people reacted negatively. If only one follower is unhappy, it may just be that one person is raw.
“We have a genre in my family we call ‘hurting your own feelings,’” Ms. Newman said. “Where you’re looking for something to hang some pain on and you find it.”
You don’t have to own the person’s grief, but you do have to take responsibility for yourself and apologize. You can keep it simple, Ms. Newman said: I see your pain. I’m so sorry.
If you post something that is hurtful to a wider audience — you inadvertently said something offensive or you didn’t consider all the issues — it should absolutely be deleted if it’s causing people pain.
If it’s not, consider keeping the post up, Ms. Newman said, because deleting it erases the post from public view but does not address the hurt it caused. On Facebook, she suggested an “edited to add” with your heartfelt apology. This should not include the words “but” or “if,” as in, “I apologize if you were offended.” These words don’t acknowledge the hurt person’s truth and their situation, or your role in hurting them.
“If you accidentally step on someone’s foot, you don’t say, ‘I’m sorry if I stepped on your foot,’” Ms. Swann said. “You did it. It’s not a question.”
Your apology should also include a thoughtful plan about how you’ll do things differently in the future, which can be calibrated based on how grievous the offense. For lesser instances, Ms. Gottsman said, a sentence like “I’ll think twice before I post,” may be enough.
These are words all of us could live by.
Source:- The New York Times
Media Advisory: Virtual Infrastructure Announcement in Brampton – Yahoo Canada Finance
SAN DIEGO, April 08, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Reneo Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a clinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of therapies for patients with rare, genetic, mitochondrial diseases, today announced the pricing of its initial public offering of 6,250,000 shares of its common stock at a public offering price of $15.00 per share, for total gross proceeds of approximately $93.8 million, before deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and offering expenses. All of the shares are being offered by Reneo. The shares are expected to begin trading on the Nasdaq Global Market on April 9, 2021 under the symbol “RPHM.” In addition, Reneo has granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 937,500 shares of common stock at the public offering price less underwriting discounts and commissions. The offering is expected to close on April 13, 2021, subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Jefferies, SVB Leerink and Piper Sandler are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering. A registration statement relating to these securities has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and became effective on April 8, 2021. The offering is being made only by means of a prospectus. Copies of the final prospectus relating to the offering may be obtained, when available, from: Jefferies LLC, Attention: Equity Syndicate Prospectus Department, 520 Madison Avenue, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10022, by telephone at (877) 821-7388 or by e-mail at email@example.com; SVB Leerink LLC, Attention: Syndicate Department, One Federal Street, 37th Floor, Boston, MA, 02110, by telephone at (800) 808-7525, ext. 6105 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; or Piper Sandler & Co., Attention: Prospectus Department, 800 Nicollet Mall, J12S03, Minneapolis, MN 55402, by telephone at (800) 747-3924 or by e-mail at email@example.com. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of, these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction. About Reneo PharmaceuticalsReneo is a clinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of therapies for patients with rare genetic mitochondrial diseases, which are often associated with the inability of mitochondria to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Reneo is developing REN001 to modulate genes critical to metabolism and generation of ATP, which is the primary source of energy for cellular processes. REN001 has been shown to increase transcription of genes involved in mitochondrial function and increase fatty acid oxidation, and may increase production of new mitochondria. Contacts: Joyce AllaireManaging DirectorLifeSci Advisors, LLCjallaire@lifesciadvisors.com Vinny JindalChief Financial OfficerReneo Pharmaceuticals, Inc.firstname.lastname@example.org