Social Media Saving Lives

There are a lot of negative stories in the press about social media. At the forefront of these are reported acts of cyber bullying on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. When these involve children, it is especially worrying for parents and carers of kids in our community. There are, also, ‘so-called’ trolls out there in cyber land anonymously attacking people who are in the vanguard of our society, may they be celebrities, football stars or politicians. Social media provides a screen for those who wish to comment or pillory others without any real scrutiny of their actions. These failings, among others, are reported with relish by the mainstream media and social commentators. Social media saving lives, as a story, does not get much of a run.

The Internet Has Largely Undermined the Economic Foundation of Traditional Media

One thing needs to be remembered when assessing traditional media coverage. What is in it for the author or publisher? Everyone in this world is pushing their own wheel barrow. The Internet, and forms of it like social media, have largely undermined the economic foundation of newspapers, magazines, and to a lesser extent TV networks. Journalists have lost their jobs in the tens of thousands, all over the globe. You would not say that publishers, editors and journos are big fans of what the digital age has done to their professions and livelihoods. Their commentary and focus on the negative aspects of social media must be seen in light of this.

Social Media Campaign Fighting the Devastating Effects of Bush Fires in Australia

There are, however, many positive stories involving social media. Indeed, social media saving lives is not an uncommon occurrence. In Australia, during bush fire season, we regularly witness lives and homes being lost to the ravishes of fire. A social media campaign run for the NSW Rural Fire Service was able to double their communities on Facebook and Twitter, which allows them to inform their followers of dangers via these social media platforms during bush fire season. This means many more people being instantly informed of a bush fire’s status in relation to their own homes. More of these kinds of approaches, utilising the popularity of social media platforms like Facebook for crisis communication, have been taken by emergency services throughout Australia in recent years.

Social Media in the Management of Natural Disasters Globally

Social media in the management of natural disasters and in war zones has been highlighted globally in the last decade. Digital technology in the form of mobile phones and social media has been a life saver in many third world countries undergoing natural disasters and armed conflicts. In the Arab Spring in Egypt, parties from all sides utilised social media to communicate with their members and the world’s media. Social media is not some silver bullet in these terrible events and atrocities, but it is providing a platform for rapid mass communication during crises. Social media saving lives is definitely on the global agenda.





Social Media is it Now an Essential Part of Life?

Social media for many older Australians has been a curiosity, at best, and a wait and see prospect for many in business. It is loudly trumpeted by large sections of the community and either praised or demonised at various times for its acuity. Some of us thought and hoped that it might fade away in time, but this looks increasingly unlikely. Younger Australians have embraced it, as they do most trends and novelties at that age. Belonging to a group or tribe seems to be an important element in adolescence and early adulthood. Social media is it now an essential part of life?

A Vital Component in the Marketing Arsenal

Businesses have been told that it is, now, a vital component in their marketing arsenal. That it is a space where conversations can happen between businesses and customers (I thought that was what the telephone was for). Announcements can be made by businesses. Feedback can be given by the deliriously happy and the disgruntled. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter have all provided platforms for this exchange of information and opinion. At times of course, these innocent stages have been gamed by nefarious agencies via bots and bought followings.

Facebook & Cambridge Analytica

Facebook has famously sold our data to scumbags in suits like Cambridge Analytica (how the dons at that august institute in the city of the same name must loathe this organisation). Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and CEO of Facebook, disputes this data selling fact, telling Congress, that they place ads where advertisers want to reach specific demographics. Third-party apps can, however, gain access to this data, and this was how Cambridge Analytica got hold of it. Facebook lost control of yours and my data and it ended up in the hands of these political black hats. Have we put our trust in technology, naively?

Get Expert Advice Before You Take the Plunge

Social media is it now an essential part of life? It is definitely a two-edged sword, to use an old analogy, because a bundle of likes can feel good, but, similarly, a tidal wave of hate and complaints can, potentially, send you over the edge. Do not approach social media like Mr Smith going to Washington, get some expert advice before you take the plunge. It can be a slippery slope for the uninitiated. Businesses and individuals can get burnt before they know what is happening. Something seemingly innocuous can be akin to the terrors of the old school yard, when bullies and gangs were a part of life.



Social Media Trends to Take Note of in 2018

Some folks have ignored it and hoped that it would go away. Others embraced it from the start and have taken the journey from platform to platform and everything in-between. Social media it is more than a whisper on the wind, more than idle chatter in the classroom, and, yet, not quite the medium for a marriage proposal or denuclearisation treaty with North Korea. Here are some social media trends to take note of in 2018.

More Fake News & Fake Pictures

#FakeNews has been in the news, almost constantly, since #DonaldTrump entered the White House. Fake images will be ramping up their presence across social media, as the technology to do this becomes more available to more people. You can reverse image search using Google Images, if you suspect some digital fakery at play in your news feed. Fake pictures on Facebook, seem to have made their home there. The Russians perfected the Photoshop manipulation on social media platforms for the 2016 US election. It seems the same stupid people who used to watch TV are now on Facebook instead. Social media platforms lack gravitas, especially when it comes to the news. People are more willing to believe all sorts of whacky stuff over the internet. The internet seems to invite fraudulent behaviour in the same way that a few drinks in your local bar invites promiscuity. I don’t know what it exactly is that people believe the digital realm to be, but sacrosanct is not one of those beliefs.

Does Social Media Distort Our Reality?

Perhaps, social media is considered to be one mega celebrity supermarket magazine, where everything fake is celebrated. Air brushed images have made way for complete Photoshop overhauls. The idea that the whole world is armed with cameras via their smart phones and can record crimes and misdeeds for the benefit of humanity, tends to break down in the face of rampant misuse and manipulation of the technology. Through a glass darkly, or through a Samsung lens, the world is a different place. Social media is distorting our comprehension of reality by compartmentalising it into likes and followers. Your news feed is feeding you stuff designed to be easily digestible, whether it is true or not.

It’s Egalitarian & Personal

Traditional news, in newspapers and on TV’s current affairs type programs, has always exaggerated the shocking and the negative in a bid to sell newspapers and attract high ratings on the small screen. Social media has bucked that trend via its egalitarian nature and personal networks. It may be banal, and it usually is, and it is, of course, a far more visual medium with users more inclined to snap an image with a catchy title than penning an essay on any topic. Marketers want to make it a torchbearer for their brands, but it remains a communication device for members of communities.

If we can encourage a sense of social responsibility among users of the internet and social media, in particular, then, it may survive and thrive beyond sensationalism. If we don’t, it will quickly become an obsolete plaything for morons and degenerates. Twitter, some say, already is.



Children on Social Media: Never Is Best Practice


It is an undeniable reality that our children are growing up faster than ever before. Young children are introduced to their sexuality ahead of time, through things like fashion and the media. Technology is in the hands of 4 and 5-year olds, via TV and computer screens. The incessant digital world is all around our kids, blinking 24/7 on screens large and small. Pixels and bytes forming shapes, colours and sounds are telling stories and mirroring our lives in weird and wonderful ways. What about children on social media? Is never the best practice?


Social Media & Our Kids


Children think it would be wonderful to have lots of friends. Imagine if you could have more friends than you can fit in this room or this house. The more the merrier is their lovely and naïve conception of that reality. In truth, friends or acquaintances can turn on you at the slightest provocation in the realm of the digital world. Virtual forums on social media disguise the identities of their members. The internet is a fraudulent place, where who says what bears little resemblance to any forum in the flesh and blood real world. There are adults pretending to be children online. Sexual deviants pretending to be your caring friend. Criminals attempting to discover financial information about possible targets for their frauds.


We Must Be Vigilant on Behalf of Our Kids


Kids must be protected from the nefarious elements prevalent on social media platforms. It is not a game to be played by human beings of all ages. This world wide web has plenty of spiders lying in wait for the innocent and unwary. Whilst there are bad people doing nasty things to other human beings, we must be vigilant on behalf of our kids. We must respect the privacy of child care centres to ensure the safety of their attendees. All institutions and facilities that cater for our kids must be adequately protected 24/7.

Social Media is an Adult Conversation

Social media is an adult conversation. It is a free for all between consenting adults. It can be productive, and it can be very negative. It takes the qualities inherent within us all and magnifies those on a much larger scale. It turns micro into mega, intimate into a stadium experience. It involves uncommitted participants in an exchange of opinions. It takes a digital impression of what may or may not be a person and asks you to play along with the charade called social media networking. Children on social media: Never is best practice.


Social Media Safety: Are Your Teenagers Safe on Social Media?

It is a sad case of affairs that human beings, whatever their age, are subject to destructive bullying and vitriol online. The internet is home to faceless cowards venting their bile over platforms like Twitter and other social media platforms. Social media safety: Are your teenagers safe on social media? The simple answer is no, unless they are as thick skinned as a rhinoceros. I do not suggest to parents that they blithely find out if their kids are tough enough, but rather, be vigilantly aware of what is going on in this virtual forum. This online playground, where the knocks can come unseen and with devastating force.


Adolescents on Social Media & the Dangers


Social media is intensely attractive to many teenagers, because it promises the allure of the attention of others and their approval. However, what can transpire is the exact opposite. Your teenager may suddenly face group ridicule and denigration, which can occur 24/7. The pack can turn on one of their own and rip all sense of self-esteem to shreds in that benighted individual. Most adolescents do not have the survival skills to cope with en masse bullying. Suicides are not uncommon in the resultant fallout from these online attacks.


Kids on Twitter & Facebook Can Suffer


Some in the community say that this a whole lot of rubbish and refuse to acknowledge the seriousness of the problem. Burying our heads in the sand. when it comes to acknowledging how human behaviour is amplified by technology, will not serve us well in the long term. The privacy lobby resists unpopular safety innovations, when it comes to things like the internet. Social media safety issues around teenagers are very real and demand solutions. Kids on Twitter and Facebook can suffer irreparable damage and be lost to us.


Adolescents are Prone to Suggestibility


Social media is, also, a forum for cultural exchanges and influences; many of which are based on incorrect facts and fear mongering. Our teenagers are being influenced by social media trend setters and much of what they have to say is unhealthy, to say the least. Adolescents are prone to suggestibility and anxieties about body shapes and their sexuality. The incessant nature of social media makes it particularly dangerous to the young and inexperienced. Kids fear missing out on things and social media can reinforce those anxieties. Make sure that you are having regular conversations with your kids about their social media usage and experiences.




Promoting Franchise Businesses Using Social Media

There are two sides to every franchise business. One, the franchisor promoting franchise opportunities to potential franchisees. Two, the franchisee promoting their branch to their customers and market. Social media can help achieve both these aims economically and effectively. Beginning firstly with the franchisor, there are enormous opportunities on the various social media platforms to reach potential franchisees. Social media is a conversation, it is a forum, a virtual place where you can express ideas and opportunities. You can receive feedback from interested parties on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and Pinterest, to name the main players in the game. Promoting franchise businesses using social media makes a lot of sense.


Franchise Businesses Can Market Via Social Media


A franchise business that’s appealing as family-friendly will have great drawing power for potential franchisees. So many new franchisees are attracted to owning businesses which provide family life/work balance. Many of them have exited the corporate world because of its heavy daily and hourly demands upon its workers. It may pay well, but it puts a strain on personal and family lives. To become your own boss and work your own hours is a very appealing factor in becoming a franchisee. Social media can promote this feature to prospective franchisees.


Social Media Can Supercharge Franchise Opportunities


Deft social media management can promote your franchise business to a market and community ripe for opportunities. The Internet allows you to reach a large audience of interested parties; if you are presenting the right content on social media and managing it adeptly, the world is your oyster. The growing interest in food businesses such as catering, is one prime example of social media’s ability to attract new customers and to tell customers about your franchise. You can find out what customers think about your business. Market research is rife on Facebook and other platforms.



Social Media Management is Essential


Once you have your own franchise branch, you want to promote your own particular outlet to your market, and social media is ideal for that. Geographical locations, combined with your franchise brand name, will target the customers in your locale. Social media management is essential for promoting businesses via Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter. It takes a daily commitment to posting and responding to your followers, if you are to make your social media a real winner for your franchise business. You can build stronger relationships with all the stake holders in your business through this medium.






Promoting Your Medical Clinic on Social Media

Social media is your community grapevine. You’ve heard that Marvin Gaye song about hearing things on the grapevine, haven’t you? Facebook, Instagram, Google Plus and Twitter are all platforms for your virtual community to interact with you on. You are the local doctor, the village healer, and your medical clinic provides many necessary healthcare services within your community. You need to get the message out and provide a place for feedback from your clients. Promoting your medical clinic on social media endowers your business with multiple marketing opportunities. These avenues are interacting 24/7, whenever a prospective patient may need you.

Social Media Makes Marketing Sense for Medical Centres

If you are running a medical clinic and are not on social media, you must have rocks in your head. I am not sure if anyone famous once said that, but they should have. Social media makes marketing sense for medical centres in Australia. When people get sick, they go online in the twenty first century. They are looking for answers to their healthcare issues. You, as a provider of healthcare, need to be online to provide those answers. Your presence on the internet is both reassuring and informative.

If Your Medical Clinic is on Social Media

People are looking to find out about specialised dental services, paediatric doctors, medicare, bulk billing, sciatica treatments, and every medical issue under the sun. If your medical clinic is on social media, there is a good chance that these prospective clients will find you. Post useful things, like health information about particular conditions and illnesses, for people to read online. Make your presence felt on these channels and you will reap the rewards of customers making appointments to see you professionally.

The Internet is a Panacea for the Sick

Chiropractors on Instagram are showing pictures of their treatments to prospective clients who may need their services. Social media has so much to offer all those people who are in pain and who don’t know where to go for relief. The internet is a panacea for the sick within our communities, it is a portal to possible solutions for serious healthcare issues. No longer are the poor and challenged within our cities dispossessed of real answers to their health problems. Social media will, not only, promote your medical business, it will, also, provide possible avenues toward better health for millions of people. Promoting your medical clinic on social media will get rid of all those rocks in your head, guaranteed!

Disabled & Cute: Positive Disability Hashtag Goes Viral

positive disabiity hashtag

When we say that we love ourself, it should also mean that we love our body and we fully accept who we are or what we are.

Last February, a positive disability hashtag went viral after Keah Brown tweeted her selfies with the hashtag #DisabledAndCute. This “Love Yourself” sort of campaign is the last thing we’d expect from a disabled person, given the society’s notion towards them. Brown, a 25-year-old journalist with cerebral palsy from New York, said that most people give the impression that people with disabilities (PWDs) are unattractive and are often perceived as undesirable and broken. Like any other human being, Brown also feels insecure about her body. But one morning, she was feeling cute, so she decided to share on Twitter what she’s feeling. And the Internet overwhelmingly responded.

Disabled & Cute: Positive Disability Hashtag Goes Viral

More often than not, the hashtags that make an impact on Twitter are about musicians, sports, politics, natural disasters and celebrities. There are only quite a few hashtags about body positivity and disability that resonate on Twitter. For the proponents of disability activism, the hashtag #DisabledAndCute gave the spotlight to the disabled and their physical and mental incapacities. It allowed the PWDs to proudly show to the world their disabilities that make them who they are.

The positive disability hashtag also became the tool of people with physical and mental impairments for them to share their stories that purvey the idea of acceptance, joy and body positivity. Having said that, their openness about their disabilities is not an act of bravery, but rather a way of demonstrating that they are fierce and fabulous despite their condition.

According to reports, the majority of the people who joined in the positive disability hashtag are those with genetic disorders, with limited ability to move, and the blind. Their stories that they share are distinct and convey empowerment. There are also people from all walks of life who got involved. These are Internet users who were feeling good and happy about themselves.

Aside from the #DisabledAndCute hashtag, there are also other hashtags that are helping PWDs tell their stories. Some of these are #GetYourBellyOut for people who use colostomy bags; #CripTheVote to empower those with mobility issues to cast their votes; and #ShowMeYourPump for diabetic people who are heavily dependent on insulin pumps.

Tourism Engaging with Social Media

tourism engaging with social media

Marketers would agree that social media is a very powerful and cost-efficient way in promoting a business. Truth be told, it has dramatically transformed how companies communicate and reach their target market. For instance, the dawn of the Internet age and the increasing popularity of social media led to big changes in travel marketing and in the industry in general. Through social tourism, travelers and holidaymakers can easily search for tourist destinations and activities to enjoy here in the Land Down Under.

The social media also became the platform where tourists can tell about their great and not so great experiences. Since word travels fast online, they take social media abuzz, and even praise or jeer the people who made their trip unforgettable.

Tourism Engaging with Social Media

One of the lessons that businesses engaged in tourism should learn by heart is that they must not doubt the influence of social media. Having said that, it is a double edged sword; that is, social media can both be a threat and an aid to a country’s tourism sector.

Our very own Tourism Australia is said to be a global powerhouse in terms of social media destination marketing. One of their strategies why they had an overwhelming online presence is that they use their social media platforms in turning the loyal fans as the hero. Each week, Tourism Australia has their “Friday Fan Photos” where fan pictures from their trips in the country are published on their page. This way, the followers become the country’s tourism ambassadors.

The businesses in tourism engaging with social media also use the platform in online reputation management. More often than not, customers express their disappointment and frustration online. Such negative feedback is damaging to the company’s brand and image. As a step in damage control, they use the social media in getting to the bottom of their client’s concerns. For instance, airline companies, such as JetBlue and American Airlines, have mastered the skills in addressing flight issues of their customers. In fact, they always add a human touch when dealing with customer complaints on social media.

According to Jesse Desjardins, the Social Media and Advocacy Officer of Tourism Australia, one of the most common mistakes of businesses in the tourism industry is that they pour too much resources in their social media campaigns that they forgot they also have a website. Yes, social media can be used in bolstering brand awareness and increasing new leads. However, customers still make transactions on websites, and not on social media channels. Therefore, it is important that they also invest in a simple, but beautiful website.

Chai memes

Chai memes made for client

Mmm chai. You either love it or you hate it, there is hardly an in between. The aromatic blend of herbs and spices hints at the deliciousness that is about to invade your senses. This traditional centuries old tea – based drink originally from India has grown so popular that there is a chai in every country. Bondi Chai latte’s spin on this spiced brew is such that it is perfect to drink either hot or cold; can be stored in its original package up to 2 years; is gluten-free; can be used to flavour drinks and desserts; and is a genuinely all-Australian product.

warms the heart chai meme

Nothing warms the heart quite like Bondi Chai


breakfast idea chai meme

Bondi Chai for breakfast idea


bondi royale chai meme

Bondi Chai Royale


another cup chai meme

What goes best with a cup of chai? Another cup


recipe chai meme

How wonderful it is to have your chai and eat it too


latte chai meme

It is never too late for a latte

Share a cup of friendship

The nature of chai

Blood group : Chai positive

I love you a latte

Take life one latte at a time

I need chai to focus

Go the extra mile

Chai is always a good idea