Gossip Genie Blog


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There’s a new Twitter Bot in town and you don’t want to mess with this grammar conscious corrector. The account is predicated on a hilarious concept, hence over 12,000 followers in just a few days and after less than 70 tweets. The bio states: Correcting people saying your in America and telling others to learn to speak English.

Your versus You’re is one of the grammatical errors that irks me the most. You can read more about in a post I wrote back in August. What Not to Post: Your vs You’re

Back to the Bot! The feed for this account is hysterical because 9/10 times the original tweets are being erased due to the embarrassment caused by this Bot’s blatant correction. Follow along here @YourInAmerica

Black Friday By The Numbers

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I went shopping on Black Friday for the first time ever this year.

Let me preface this with saying I’m not a shopper and I’m usually the person who waits until Christmas Eve to do his Christmas shopping. But I figured I’d get an early start this year and get some deals while I was at it.

I didn’t camp out in any lines or go at midnight; I was too busy recovering from my food coma. I did, however, brave the mall on Friday, a place with long lines and big crowds of angry shoppers that gives me anxiety on a normal day.

On this particular day, there were people directing traffic, porta-potties set up in the parking lots, and every store was jam-packed. Definitely not my idea of a fun time.

Most stores had lines to get in the door and security guards letting groups in one at a time like a bouncer at a club. Is it really worth it to stand outside in 30-degree weather for 40 percent off? I guess that’s your call but I value my warmth (and sanity) too much. Needless to say, I stuck to the stores that didn’t have a mile-long line to get into.

When I read reports that spending hit a record high this Black Friday, I wasn’t surprised based on my experience. Here’s a look at the numbers:

  • The number of Americans visiting stores to shop on the holiday jumped 83% this year, while a record number of people shopped online.
  • The average shopper spent $423 this weekend, up from $398 a year ago
  • Total spending reached an estimated $59.1 billion, according to the National Retail Federation.
  • 28% made it to the store by midnight on Black Friday, compared with just 24.4% a year ago.
  • An estimated 35 million Americans visited stores after gobbling up their turkey dinners, up from just 6 million a year ago, according to the NRF
  • A record 247 million shoppers visited stores and web sites, up from 226 million a year ago, according to the NRF survey
  • U.S. retail e-commerce spending this Black Friday reached $1.042 billion, making it the biggest online spending day to date in 2012 and marking a 26% increase from the 2011 period, according to data from comScore

I ended up getting some really good deals and can check a lot of things off my Christmas shopping list but I haven’t decided yet if Black Friday shopping is for me. What are your thoughts? Is Black Friday shopping an annual tradition for you?

Recovery Vlog

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

I have always wanted a reason to vlog in order to document a life event. Therefore, I figured what better time to try it out than my knee surgery. Last week, I wrote about my upcoming knee surgery and this week I am writing about my recent knee surgery. The thing about this surgery, patella realignment is that it’s not very common and therefore, I would love to use my social media savvy to provide others with information about the procedure. Despite the difficult recovery, I feel very blessed that there was a solution to my knee problems that did not require a full knee replacement. I am dedicated to my profession because I think every social media maven should vlog about something at least once in their lifetime and despite my sickly appearance, I felt like now was a great time to try it out.

The day of surgery – a couple of hours before the procedure

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Day 4
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Twitter Mourns the Loss of Twinkies in 140 Characters or Less

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Amdist news of Hostess Brands, Inc.’s decision to shut down 10 months after filing bankruptcy for the second time, the masses took to Twitter to grieve the loss of Twinkies, which have been a staple on the shelves of grocery stores and gas stations for over 75 years.

I’ve collected some of the funniest tweets mourning the loss of the iconic spongey dessert.

It’s interesting to see the attention Hostess, and Twinkies especially, have gotten surrounding news of the brand’s demise. I haven’t eaten a Twinkie or Hostess product since I was a child, but based on nostalgia factor alone, I can see where the intense reaction is coming from. Will I ever pay $20,000 for a pack of Twinkies as advertised on eBay right now? Definitely not. But it’s sad to see a brand that has been so iconic, especially in the Chicagoland area where Hostess resides, leave so abruptly.

Yet still, Twinkies might live on! With high brand recognition and over 2.5 million dollars in revenue each year, companies are currently bidding to save the Hostess product. And based on Twitter chatter alone, it looks like the demand is definitely there!


It looks like Twinkies really do last forver!


What Not To Post: Cryptic Messages to Company Pages

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

As most of us now know, Facebook has allowed users the ability to privately message business pages. This is a new feature that can be set on or off depending on what the page administrator prefers. Gossip Genie clients have this feature set on as we like to communicate with fans should they have a question or comment that they do not want to write on the wall. It is also useful for exchanging information when a contest winner has been chosen.

If you have your own business page, at some point you will receive strange messages. Whether they are in another language, incoherent, requests for free products or just strange and inappropriate, you usually have to decide when to ignore and when to respond. I complied just a few of my favorites along with one that a friend of mine received on her company’s page (bottom photo). We believe this young woman meant to send a message to my friend, not her company’s business page!

Forum Fear

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For the past 15 years, I have suffered from a chronically unstable knee that dislocates frequently. The damage to my cartilage has been severe and unfortunately, my only option is to undergo patella realignment surgery. After countless hours of physical therapy, I finally came to terms with the genetic deformity that is my shallow knee groove. Luckily, I do have a solution but unfortunately, it requires a major surgical procedure. That being said, for the past year, I have had numerous x-rays and MRIs, I have been consulting with knee specialists and patella realignment surgery is the definitive solution. My doctor specifically told me not to read information about this procedure online because every patient’s experience is different. This is one of my doctor’s orders that I did not follow but I wish I had. After an emotional night of scouring the Internet and absorbing the horror stories surrounding my upcoming surgery, I decided that I will no longer turn to forums for additional information on anything related to my health.

It was this post in particular that did it for me…











There will be no early dust biting for me…

My Digital Style

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

One of the social media sins I will never commit is over-publicizing political commentary. Now that the election is over, I am relieved that Facebook and Twitter will no longer be a battleground of Romney versus Obama. That being said, I was extremely careful this election when it came to social media. I carefully followed all of the news and considered myself a quiet observer. The Gossip Genie team did the same and I was really proud of our posts this week. If you haven’t had a chance to read Anthony’s blog post on Hootsuite’s 2012 Election Tracker, Elizabeth’s Social Media Update on #ElectionDay post or Laurel’s post entitled Tweeting for the Record, I would urge you to do so. Each one offers a great perspective on the important role social media played during the election.

I always encourage my team to publicize their posts for the world to see because the fabulous writing represents us well. Laurel posted her Tweeting for the Record post on our Gossip Genie Linkedin Page.

From there, I liked the post on Linkedin and that activity showed up on my Linkedin feed for my connections to see. Keep in mind, the post has absolutely no reference to any political affiliation.

Minutes later I receive a Linkedin message from someone who clearly has way too much time on his hands.

I was shocked by the message and surely thought this person had accidentally contacted the wrong person. I responded by saying, “I think you have the wrong person” and figured I would soon get an apology. Instead he responded with, “How so?” to which I responded, “I haven’t been posting any political commentary.” I had to screenshot the rest of the convo because it’s hard to believe anyone would respond like this…

Never in my life have I encountered someone that is trying to control the message as much as this person. If you don’t like what I have to say or the way my digital footprint is publicized, disconnect, defriend, unlike, unfollow but please, don’t try to change my digital style because that’s not going to happen.

Tweeting for the Record

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After we posted Obama’s history making tweet this morning on the Gossip Genie Facebook page, I decided to see where it matched up against the other popular tweets in Twitter history. posted the top 10 tweets of all time and I was surprised to see the other 9 tweeters stacking up against Obama are comprised mostly of pop stars. I also found it interesting that all of the tweets besides Mr.President’s do not mention any significant events in our recent history! Check out the ‘Top 10 Most Popular Tweets’ below and read the full article here.




Hootsuite’s 2012 Election Tracker

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Hootsuite has set up a 2012 Election Tracker to provide a look at the social media chatter surrounding tomorrow’s Presidential election. The comprehensive command center tracks everything from tweets from @BarackObama and @MittRomney, mentions of the Presidential candidates and VP candidates, and even mentions of the women vying for the title of First Lady.

What I thought was really interesting about HootSuite’s Election Tracker was the tracking of social media sentiment for each candidate. This section of the tracker tracks the mood of the tweets surrounding each candidate. You can see what percentage of tweets for Barack Obama and Mitt Romney express sentiments such as affection/friendliness, enjoyment/elation, amusement/excitement, anger/loathing, sadness/grief, humiliation/shame, and others.

Matt Switzer, VP Partnerships & Corporate Development at HootSuite, explained that, “Social media has become an incredible barometer of public opinion, and the public expresses more opinion during elections than almost any other time. This election-focused social command center dashboard provides a public opinion poll happening right in front of you during the entire election. Up-to-date info is essential during an election that sees candidates giving speeches, and potentially making mistakes, every hour of every day.”

This will be a great resource to stay up-to-date on the reactions surrounding the results of the election tomorrow night. Stay tuned for Elizabeth’s blog tomorrow where she will talk about the social media stats of the Presidential election!