Gossip Genie Blog

Is Social Media Changing the Way We Watch TV?

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Reality TV, Social Media | No Comments


Something is stirring in the landscape of broadcast television. And social media is at the root of the shift.

Did you know 80% of Smartphone and tablet owners use their devices while watching TV? And 51% of those who post on social media while watching TV do so to connect with others who might also be watching the same thing. They’re tweeting, commenting, and talking live as the events unfold during broadcast, a notable change in how we’re experiencing television series in the age of social networking. Gone are the days of “watercooler” TV talk. Now, chatter and spoilers are easily accessible through social media. The TV landscape is shifting from the watercooler to the Internet.

It looks like more and more networks are starting to integrate social media into their series to enhance the viewing experience of their audience, thereby creating more loyalty among their viewers. While most shows on television have a Facebook page and Twitter account for their fans to like and follow, some TV shows are taking social to a whole new level.

Take Bravo, for example. Aimed at a younger, female-driven audience, the network has engaged viewers by integrating social media in real-time, placing themselves light-years ahead of competing networks. Now, viewers can answer questions while watching the broadcast to vote on what is happening on screen. Ever had the desire to share your opinion on whose side you are on in a housewife fight? Now you can! Bravo’s Play Live! Site serves up real-time content, questions and polls around whatever show is airing on Bravo at any given time. As people vote or interact with content on the site, the tally is calculated and displayed on the television screen in real-time, during the show.

It will be interesting to see how social media plays in the ratings and popularity of a television show. Will networks catch on to the importance of social media and rely more on popularity on social networks than on Nielsen ratings? Many shows are cancelled because they don’t have enough viewers based on Nielsen ratings, but what if social media chatter could change the fate of your favorite shows at risk of cancellation?

Trendrr TV measures social media activity related to specific television shows (e.g. mentions, likes, check-ins) across Twitter, Fcaebook, GetGlue, and Viggle. Here’s a look at the top television on social media last weekend:


Interestingly enough, Spongebob Squarepants was the most talked about show on the air in 2012. Here’s the top 10 list:

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As more and more television shows begin to integrate social media, it may seem inevitable that everything on TV will be in the social sphere soon. Have you become a superfan of your favorite shows by connecting with them online? Are there any shows you feel have dropped the ball in the social game, and you wished they’d expend a little more effort on it? How about TV shows that possibly shouldn’t go social? Does such a thing exist in our interconnected world?

Back to Baltimore

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media Spotlight | No Comments

The time of year is upon us once again, Christmas morning for the management and culinary students of ProStart. It’s the National ProStart Invitational this weekend and I am off to Baltimore on Friday to cover the event, live through social media. 43 culinary teams and 39 management teams from all over the country are competing. It is a very exciting weekend. 524326_10151580910790634_1673319676_n 576335_10151580085940634_1370549779_n148995_10151584548975634_362374371_n

This year, Celebrity chef Maneet Chauhan has booked a stop at the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s ProStart Invitational while touring the country to promote her brand-new culinary book. Chauhan, the James Beard award-winning chef and judge of the Food Network’s hit TV show “Chopped”, will appear at the NRAEF’s 12th annual National ProStart Invitational in Baltimore, April 19-21, as part of her “Cutting Edge” tour to promote “Flavors of My World: A Culinary Tour Through 25 Countries,” the book she co-authored with Doug Singer. During her ProStart visit, she will interact with the 350 students from 43 states who are competing for $1.4 million in scholarship prizes. The contestants will demonstrate their leadership skills in restaurant management and the culinary arts.

If you want to join the party this year, follow @ProStart on Twitter, Like the page on Facebook and follow us on Pinterest. Our hashtag for the show is #itselectric13.

To watch a live feed of the culinary and management competitions, please visit on Saturday and Sunday, April 20 and 21.  Tune in again Sunday evening to watch the champions crowned.

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Ride Your Bike to Pinkberry!

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It’s sad but true, when you get busy, the blog is the first thing to be neglected. Busy is good but ignoring your blog is wrong! Anyway, our beloved client and healthy addiction, Pinkberry has just launched a Pinkberry Greek, it’s not frozen, it’s Greek (and DELICIOUS). Ever Wednesday in April between 11 – 2pm you can try it for FREE at one of the Pinkberry Chicago locations – 635 N State St or 1533 N. Wells! Make sure to tweet us a picture @PinkberryChi
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If you are planning on riding your bike to get your free Greek Yogurt from Pinkberry, you should back BikeSpike. A bike GPS tracker that automatically reports a crash to contacts, alerts you if tampered with, IOS/Android/web friendly with open API.

  BikeSpike has nearly reached their goal of $150K through KickStarter, help them get there in the next 4 days. 

Let it Snow… and Stop Posting About It!

By | Gossip Genie Blog, What Not to Post | No Comments

In case you didn’t know it was snowing in Chicago….

This is a perfect example of why some prospective clients think that social media is a forum for discussions about the consumption of breakfast food and the weather.

When something as trivial as snow overwhelms my Facebook newsfeed, I can only imagine what it would be like if aliens invaded. That would make for some interesting content.


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Facebook Plans to Revamp News Feed

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media, Social Media Spotlight | No Comments

Whether we like it or not, social media outlets will continue to advance, change, and revamp itself, and we best believe our hands will not be held during the process.  All we can do is hop on the social media-driven train, pray we don’t get lost in translation, and give in to the idea of change.

Facebook’s users, which have reached over 1 billion people in 9 years, will have to hop on Facebook’s fast moving train fairly quickly. On March 7th at its Menlo Park, California headquarters, Facebook will be unveiling a revamped “news feed” during a media event; consider it an Internet-friendly face-lift.

The notorious news feed is home to a single stream that’s constantly updated with photos, videos, news articles, and life statuses, which creates a smorgasbord of information about friends and other interests.  Putting it simply, the news feed is the hub of Facebook.

According to the Huffington Post, the last major modification to Facebook’s news feed was in September 2011.  Since that change, Facebook began to allow ads directly into the feed.  The network also redirected its focus on creating “mobile first experiences” since people now access social sites at all hours of the day on their mobile devices.

The Huffington Post continues to say that Facebook has gone through many changes since its introduction in 2004. This newest development is just another alteration to add to the list.  Although users tend to have an aversion for all of Facebook’s many changes, the social site continues to grow and maintain a leading role in the Internet world.

Some speculate that the up and coming changes will include stronger ad engagement and tweaks to the mobile feed.  We won’t be able to truly grasp the tweaks, pulls, twists that will be done to the feed until it pops up on our own computers or mobile devices.

On that note, I guess there’s only one last thing to say: Welcome to a world where change is a leading character, and social media has taken the reins.

How do you feel about Facebook undergoing another change?

Yay or Nay

The Oscars Took Over Social Media

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media | No Comments

The Oscars hit the stage for their 85th show yesterday.  Like expected, the show was glittering with the red carpet, must-see interviews, extravagant attire and endless entertainment.  There was one more factor, however, that the Oscars wanted to focus on this year: social media frenzy.

The Academy encouraged celebrities to snap quick shots of themselves in the backstage green room during the event, which is a private area for stars to hang out before making their début on stage.  Once the photo-booth shot is taken, the stars were asked to then tweet the snapshot into the Twittersphere for all the fans to see.  Some celebrities took a quick self-shot, others posed with poise and then a few took a shot with a celeb friend, making humorous faces at the camera.  You just couldn’t help but laugh and wish you could join in on the fun.

Melissa McCarthy & Paul Rudd

Denzel Washington & George Clooney

Catherine Zeta-Jones


It was a perfect mix of “behind the scenes” and getting up close and personal with some of the most famous movie stars out there.

Some of the top moments talked about in the social media world were Michelle Obama’s surprise appearance, Jennifer Lawrence’s epic tumble and the Jaws-themed music that played when acceptance speeches went a bit too long.

According to ABC News, Michelle Obama presenting the Best Picture award to Argo on the big screen was the biggest moment of the night with 85,300 tweets.  Jennifer Lawrence received twitter fame as well.  ABC News announced that there were 71,600 tweets being sent out like rapid fire when she won.  Unfortunately, most tweets were about her fall as she attempted to walk up to the stage.

To get a better idea of the amount of people taking part in social media during the Oscars, ABC News lays out the incredible statistics: Over the course of the night there were over 8.9 million tweets about the big show.  With that said, 2.1 million were during the red carpet and 6.8 million during the awards show.

I would say The Oscars successfully created a social media frenzy filled with celebrity snapshots, both funny and elegant, chit-chatter about the show and an overwhelming amount of community engagement for fans everywhere.



Breaking Up in the Digital Age: Is KillSwitch the Solution?

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media | No Comments


Breaking up is hard to do.  From the tears and anger to the constant reminders of them in your life and the dividing up of shared stuff, I’m sure there are times you’ve wished you could just forget them altogether.

In today’s digital age, that is increasingly more difficult. Reminders of our exes don’t just mean walking past the coffee shop where you had your first date. Now, it’s as simple as logging onto Facebook. Photos, wall posts, and messages of your life together are all neatly packaged on the social media site, a daily reminder of your relationship and ex flooding your newsfeed and profile.

Have you ever wished you could just delete your ex from your mind completely?

The new mobile app, KillSwitch, might be able to help.

Released on Valentines Day (how fitting), the app, whose tagline is “Making breakups suck less,” makes it easy to eliminate your ex’s entire presence from your Facebook timeline.

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The app searches your profile for content such as photos, videos, wall posts, and status updates linked or tagged to your ex’s specific Facebook ID. Once it identifies all the content, you have the option to delete it all or manually select certain interactions you want deleted. If you don’t want to delete your entire history with your ex on Facebook, you can choose to save photos, videos, or anything else in a secret KillSwitch folder that lives on your Facebook account for easy access whenever you want, invisible to others.

Helpful tip: You have to still be friends with your ex on Facebook to use the app, so don’t make any rash decisions in the heat of the moment after your breakup.

KillSwitch begs the question: Can we ever really invest in a new relationship while evidence of our past ones remain etched into the peripheries of our digital lives?

KillSwitch’s site says it aims to be social media’s answer to helping people move on post-breakup. Their website says:

“Relationships ending and moving on is an essential, healthy part of life. And while social media intends to reflect many aspects of the human experience, it doesn’t yet easily reflect the key element- the end of relationships. With KillSwitch, we’re trying to fill that gap, bridge online with offline. To help people move on in their digital lives as much as they want and need to in their personal lives.”

This app reminded me of the technology used in the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, albeit on a much lesser level. In the film, Jim Carrey’s character uses a technology that literally erases his memories of Kate Winslet’s character from his mind after a messy breakup. Through reliving his memories with her during the erasure, he realizes that even though it hurts, holding on to the memories of her are still important.

Do we really want to erase everything about our ex? Sure, breakups are hard. The inevitability of love is that hurts. But just because we delete a few pictures and wall posts from our ex, does that make the sting of a break up hurt any less?

Not every memory is going to be good and love is not always perfect. It is messy and complicated, but isn’t it better to have those memories and to have loved than to have never loved at all? It might sound cheesy, but technology is already streamlining so much of our lives. I’m a big proponent of new technology and the innovative ways in which it can assist us, but I can’t help but wonder if using it to erase our memories is going a little far.

Memories and experiences make us who we are, and by deleting them, even just their digital imprint, aren’t we erasing a part of ourselves?

Interviewing Advice

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Words of Advice | No Comments

In the past, I have posted about resume blunders but I have never really blogged about the actual interviewing process. As a business owner of 3 years, I have conducted my fair share of interviews. The process of hiring, while it is exciting because it means a fresh perspective, it’s definitely not my favorite aspect of running a business. However, when I think about the experience and knowledge I have gained from it, I realize it’s been a very valuable part of the past 3 years. The 5 most important things I have learned are:

1. Always check references. Are you really going to hire someone without talking to anyone else about their work ethic, drive, motivation and previous performance? If it doesn’t work out, you have nobody to blame but yourself!

2. Unappreciative. Didn’t get a follow up email thanking you for the interview? No matter how much you liked the person, that’s a major indication of how they will handle communication and follow up with clients.

3. Late to the interview? That’s probably the biggest insult and indication of their lack of consideration for your time.

4. Jumper? 4 different jobs in the past year, each spanning for a total of 3 months? Major red flag and the sure sign of a “jumper.” Don’t fall for the phony enthusiasm because after you invest your time, energy and effort into training that person, they will already be interviewing at other companies.

5. Trust your instincts. This one is probably the most important. Don’t ignore those nagging doubts just because you are desperate for more help. Would you hire a nanny you weren’t totally comfortable with to take care of your baby? Take the same approach with the people you invite to be a part of your team.

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Oreo Scores a Slam Dunk: Are real-time Twitter campaigns the future of marketing?

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media, What's Trending | No Comments

As much as the Super Bowl is about football, chicken wings, and Bud Light, it’s also about marketing. A 30-second spot during the big game not only allows companies to promote their product and be seen by the hundreds of millions of people watching but also to be a part of larger media conversation. Who had the best commercial spot? Which ad was the funniest? Which featured the biggest celebrity?

(Personally, my favorite of the night was the Budweiser Clydesdale commercial. Who didn’t get a little misty when the horse recognized his trainer at the end?)

This year, CBS charged between $3.8 and $4 million for every ad shown during last night’s game. In a night of lackluster commercials, one of the most powerful marketing gambits came courtesy of your very own Twitter feed.

When the Super Bowl broadcast was abruptly interrupted by a power outage, Oreo jumped on the chance to promote their product. They tweeted this ad:

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It was retweeted more than 10,000 times in an hour. With the amount of people most likely on Twitter during the game’s broadcast, especially during a down time such as a blackout, Oreo brilliantly created a Twitter campaign to take advantage of a real-time situation.

AdAge reported that the tweet was “designed, captioned, and approved within minute’s” at a “social media war room of sorts” at the company’s headquarters.

For all the planning, money, and time that goes into making a Super Bowl ad, this one was just as, if not more, effective and was completed in mere minutes for no cost.

Working in social media, it’s exciting to see a brand as big as Oreo take risks like this and embrace the instantaneous, communal nature of social media.

Everyone watching the Super Bowl was experiencing the power outage and when they reached to their phones to check Twitter during the downtime in the game, you bet those that follow Oreo could relate, or at least connect with, the tweet ad in ways they might not have with some of the flashier, elaborately staged television spots.

On the ad industry’s biggest night, Oreo just might have scored the night’s biggest slam-dunk.

Besides the Ravens (and Beyonce), of course.