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Bridging the Gap Between Social Media and Advertisement by Accessing How Audiences Are Targeted

Quinton Miller, MDST 485 Communicating with New Media, Public Relations Major, Metropolitan State University

January 22nd, 2021

This scholarly journal keys in on the increasing popularity of CBD products. Through algorithms set for identifying certain words, this passage explains the analysis taking place surrounding the conversation concerning attitudes towards cannabinoid (CBD) and its purpose. Terms including anxiety, stress or nausea were identified as indicators for therapeutic necessities. This could help with uncovering what language companies who sell these types of products would use in their advertisements going forward. It may also provide insight into a drug policy that needs revision for places that do not allow it due to the products legality based on those first hand accounts documented from forums. This includes Cannabinol/CBD, hemp oil and Cannabis. There are pieces of qualitative data from these findings which is what some new age advertising services utilize. Not only does this tie into the cannabis sector of public relations in new media through explanation of a methodology professionals can use on social media platforms, this academic journal is relevant to us as citizens. When using social media, we often find advertisements geared towards something we’ve recently posted, viewed or talked about. The algorithm, similar to a control F function in a word document, gives an example of how our data is utilized in studies. Once we, as users of these platforms, think outside the box and consider other ways our words are used, we can conduct other research as to how social media and advertisements have played hand-in-hand.

Does this remind us of anyone who whistle blew about this in the past?

This news article was originally written in the beginning of 2018 and revised in October of 2020. This article includes a video experiment of a couple conversing about cat food to see if ads would begin to appear in relation to their conversation. They concluded that facebook had been listening for keywords in their conversations due to the fact that cat food advertisements begun appearing days later. These readings seem distant on the surface, but with a little critical analysis in the mindset of media communication, people can bridge the gap between an obvious new age of targeting methods and terminology. Both articles involve keywords instead of age groups. All users of either the forum or social media who used certain words were taken into account. Each of these had different ways and different purposes, but they could relate to the ways companies use new media to gather and target data on potential consumers.

Take a look below and try it out for yourself !

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U0SOxb_Lfps

Of course this isn’t the real Edward Snowden’s instagram. (I doubt we’ll see the real Snowden on social media). This is a instagram fanpage dedicated to the man who informed the world of what the NSA had been doing.

Narcity Media, October 2020, Why You Keep Getting Ads For Things You’ve Talked About But Haven’t Searched Up Online https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.narcity.com/amp/why-you-keep-getting-ads-for-things-youve-talked-about-but-havent-searched-up-online

International Journal of Drug Policy Vol. 77, Mar 2020, Social Media Surveillance for Perceived Therapeutic Effects of Cannabinol (CBD) Products https://www-sciencedirect-com.mtrproxy.mnpals.net/science/article/pii/S0955395920300293

I’m a Fraud.

Okay, I’m not. But I do often ask myself the following questions: Am I really good at what I do? Do I actually have solid experience to be giving you a reco (aka recommendation) and my POV? Am I just lucky? Do I deserve to be here?

Some days, I’m a natural hustler – I can tackle my day-to-day tasks and leave feeling very accomplished. Other days, I get too hard on myself if I mess up or don’t get something right. I crawl into a tiny ball inside my head and feel unnecessarily small, telling myself I’m not fit to be doing the work that I do.

There’s a word for that. It’s called the Imposter Syndrome. And here’s how I’ve learned to beat it on the not-so-good days.

Graphic created via Canva

So if you’ve managed to skip over the definition of Imposter Syndrome, in brief, it can be described as “…a feeling of phoniness and unworthiness among people when it comes to their achievements. And even though they’re highly motivated, they don’t really believe any of the credit that comes their way.” (Lou Solomon, TEDx)

“We feel like we have snuck in the back door of life’s theater and made our way up on stage and there’s a big bouncer out there and we know that if he sees us, we’re outta here so we’re constantly looking over our shoulder.”

Lou Solomon, TEDx Charlotte: The Surprising Solution to the Imposter Syndrome

1. Use social for self-good.

Affirmations are really energy boosters. Sometimes when I’m in a rut and I can’t seem to get out of my thoughts, I need emotional support. And it’s completely okay to need it and want it. This usually comes in the form of a social media post on Facebook where I ask friends and family to send me words of encouragement; this can either be in the comment section or a personal message. It’s not because I’m self-absorbed or needy (fortunately, I’ve overcome this thought), it’s because I’ve gathered the courage to ask of and for others so that I can continue showing up and being the best version I can be.

“The things you can do to sustain strength in your life is to live, fail, love and ask for help.” 

Lou Solomon, TEDx Charlotte: The Surprising Solution to the Imposter Syndrome

2. Go out and see people.

Usually on my bad days, all I want to do is shut the blinds, hop into bed and watch Korean dramas – consciously forgetting that I have a million other to-dos. I do this because it’s easier. I’m still working on keeping myself accountable, but as described, I can’t some days. So I make sure I get others to keep me accountable; this usually means setting up dates with friends! Coffees, dinners, brunches, you name it. Getting up, dressing up and eating out seems to do the trick. It’s refreshing to talk about other topics of interest and catch up with people I love. It’s real medicine and I forget that my mind and soul needs it from time to time. And maybe yours does too.

3. Create.

There’s something so peaceful about letting your creativity just flow. No pre-conceived notions, no creative briefs, no goals or strategies. I’ve just recently started this creative journey with 100 Days of Drawing – instead of strictly going a hundred days, I’ve taken it slow, skipped a few pages and drawn whatever I felt like drawing. That’s the beauty of creating; there are no expectations and no limits. Drawing, manifesting, creating – it all leads to self-discovery. However, I’m not a regular doodler and I don’t draw on the daily (as mentioned). I save drawing for when I most need it. When the days are exhausting, my thoughts too heavy and my social a little too saturated, it’s only then that I draw. It’s the “me now” investing in much-needed space and time for the “future me.”

4. Find your radical hero.

With every villain, there’s a radical hero. In her TED talk, Lou describes this radical hero being wiser and not willing to buy into your negative thoughts; someone who has a deeper point of view and is essentially your own personal cheerleader. When you start to doubt yourself and your self worth, summon your radical hero to call out the lies and the limiting beliefs that could isolate you and allow yourself to listen for brilliance. Once you’re able to, you’ll start to see some clarity and feel a lot better knowing that you’re more than qualified. You’re right where you’re supposed to be.

5. Reflect.

I’m no where near where I want to be in terms of mental and emotional wealth, but I’m getting there. Slowly but surely. And it all comes down to reflecting. Reflecting on my way to work, through a podcast, right before bed or even as I’m brushing my teeth. I’m a busy person and I get bursts of reflective moments. It’s odd but it works for me and my lifestyle. So here’s my last request of you in conquering this epidemic, always pursue a sense of wholeness over perfection. Taking time to reflect on your highs and lows, the work you want to do and your purpose in life will allow you to see things in a different light and set you up for success. And even that might look a little different and that’s okay.

Cheers,

M

Intrigued? Learn more about Imposter Syndrome HERE.

To be? or Not to be…Vaccinated for HPV?

[WARNING, THIS POST GETS PERSONAL]

I stumbled upon this article a few nights ago, as I was mentally preparing myself for an annual physical on Monday. Bad decision. This is exactly the kind of research you should not be doing when you are concerned with your health (think WebMD gone wrong).

Anyways, the title intrigued me because I presumed it would give me the answer to my question: “Should you Get the HPV Vaccine?”. After all, I had already received one of the three vaccinations earlier; why not just complete the set? I feel like this is straightforward for a lot of women: the doctor tells you what to do and you do it. But I’m not like ‘a lot of other women’; in fact, I’m very difficult when it comes to taking orders that involve my health and well-being. Now I’m not the type of person to refuse necessary vaccinations, but it was the idea that these shots were not necessary but recommended that got me searching for answers.

The article begins with the scare-tactics.

“Nearly 100 percent of cervical cancers are caused by high-risk HPV… If left untreated, cervical cancer may require chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or a full hysterectomy, and may even result in infertility or death.”

Having ‘Nearly 100 percent’ and ‘Cancer’ in the same sentence definitely caught my attention; I’ll give them that. The article then goes on with sections about who should get the shots, when, and how much it could cost. So it’s fair to say that despite my obscene phobia for needles, I was prepared to finish my vaccinations.

However, upon actually having my physical exam and speaking to a (I don’t say this often) wonderful OBGYN, I changed my mind once again. You see, after actually talking to a REAL doctor about the specifics of my body, I found out I didn’t really need the shots. According to her, as long as I have tested negative for HPV thus far into my relationship with my current sexual partner, AND I plan to make him my only partner (fingers-crossed), I don’t have to worry about it.

You see, this is a perfect example of how not to make decisions about your health based on the insight of a writer who turned out to have no medical-background whatsoever. I know it can be a pain in the ass to get in and out of the doctor’s office, but I’m slowly learning that sometimes it’s worth it.

-HP

(Hayley Piekkola)

#thirdblogpost

Changing Education Paradigms

Sir Ken Robinson is a phenomenal speaker, who is hilarious and insightful in turns. His lectures focus on the challenges faced by public education systems worldwide. During one of his many talks at TED conferences, he made great points about how our current educational systems diligently work to “education people out of their creative capacities” and therefore kills innovation and artistic thoughts/actions.

One video in particular, titled “Changing Education Paradigms”, was so profound that it changed how I think about the public education my children (and I, as a university student) receive.

Sir Ken Robinson’s comments about “children living in the most intensely stimulating period in the history of the Earth” and being “beseeched with information and calls for their attention from all directions” while “we are penalizing them for getting distracted from the boring stuff” we teach them in school truly resonated with me. As citizens of a wealthy and intellectually advanced nation, I often wonder why we are not seeking and demanding more innovative means to educate our children (and ourselves as lifelong learners.)

To bring higher education into the 21st century, I think we need a cultural paradigm shift to change the way we structure our educational institutions, the manner in which we deliver information and more importantly, our attitudes and ingrained thoughts about what it means to be an educated person. I am curious why we focus education on reading, writing, and arithmetic and not incorporating visual arts, dance, drama, music?

Practically speaking, some education needs to be separate from professional work. Students need to learn basic skills (reading, writing, math, science, critical thinking) to allow them a foundation to build future skills upon. However, I believe “education” should come from a COMBINATION of a variety of sources, which may include traditional classroom experiences, courses through engagement with community and civic organizations, on-the-job skills acquired through employment, as well as more abstract skills for learning through life lessons. As a student in my 30’s, I feel better prepared to apply newly acquired information (from any source) that I did in my early 20’s – and that mainly comes from the education and maturity gained through life experiences.

I invite you to watch the 11 minute video by Robinson in partnership with RSA Animate and then ponder the below questions.

As adults, and society as a whole, should we value an education separate from professional work?

What should we do to bring education into 21st century?

What do you think about the following quote by Robinson in his video How School Kill Creativity“?

“Kids will take a chance. If they don’t know, they will have a go. They’re not frightened of being wrong. Now I’m not saying that being wrong is the same as being creative; but what we do know is, if you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original. By the time they get to be adults most kids have lost that capacity and they have become frightened of being wrong. … We are now running our national education systems where mistakes are the worst thing you can make. As a result we are educating people out of their creative capacities.”  (5:27-6:32).