Gossip Genie Blog

What Not to Post: Michelle Phan #Fail

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Michelle Phan – 25 year old, self-made millionaire. While working as a waitress in 2006, she began posting makeup tutorials on YouTube. Her makeup videos, which include titles like, “Romantic Valentine Look”, “Makeup for Glasses”, “Brighter Larger Looking Eyes”, and her most popular video, “Lady Gaga ‘Poker Face’ Tutorial”, were almost instant hits. Her videos have been seen almost 600 million times, and she has over a million subscribers to her channel. Her popularity has led to numerous magazine articles and editorials, including features in Seventeen, St. Petersburg Times, the Sun Sentinel, NYLON, and Forbes Magazine. She also formed a lucrative partnership with Lancome, and features their makeup in all of her tutorials.

Phan’s Facebook page has over 1 million likes. You would think that posts would be approved by a team of editors before publicizing when you have that kind of a following. Well, clearly that is not the case with one her most recent posts:










This post is a major fail on so many levels!

Elections, Hurricane and Halloween

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While it has been sunny (yet a bit windy) here in Chicago, a storm has passed not only on the East Coast but also in the virtual world. Social media feeds that were at first flooded with presidential debate talk then shifted to Hurricane Sandy on Sunday evening. Even if you weren’t amidst the hurricane, it was hard to stay away from the images (both real and fake) that came pouring in Monday and Tuesday. Mashable reported that 10 images per second were being uploaded to Instagram with the hashtag #Sandy. At least until their cell phone batteries died, residents of the cities affected were able to receive updates in real time from local officials warning them to stay away from certain areas. Thanks to social media, the whole country felt like they were weathering the storm.

There is no shortage of devastating photos of the storm’s aftermath but the light heartedness I enjoyed during these chaotic few days were the photos that captured the small, personal moments that haven’t been seen through the media. Friends making cocktails with the booze on hand, a dog curled up in blankets, a child ready to play board games. You can find all of these photos and more hurricane devasation by searching the hashtag #Sandy on Instagram. Currently, there are over 632,000 photos.  Many cities have postponed Halloween due power outages and other dangers in the area and after a long 3 days, the East Coast is rebuilding and trying to return to normalcy. Once the floods begin to dry up and East-Coasters head back to work, we’ll have a new topic to talk about on social media. November 6th marks Election Day and surely there will be no shortage of conversations happening on social media regarding this highly opinionated topic!

















Social Media Heating up the Debate

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Engaging with the debates on social media is a whole new forum to express your political views. The graphic below breaks down social media engagement by candidate (Romney on the left and Obama on the right).  Obama takes a lead with more mentions on Facebook while Romney’s name is used more on Twitter. Do you think the social media numbers will help to decide who wins the 2012 election? Don’t forget to take advantage of your right to vote on November 6th…#ElectionDay!


Photobombs Gone Viral

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Forget planking, the latest viral social trend is the photobomb. Inconsiderate, yet sly and hilarious, it’s just enough to humor the photographer and perhaps enrage the intended model. Exceptional photobombs have the ability to go viral as this stingray photobomb did a couple of weeks ago which was actually taken five years ago in Cayman Islands at Stingray City.


Photobombs can also symbolize a memorable moment and provide sentiment to the bomber. Case in point, a bystander in the Abbey Road album cover.


Combine a red carpet event, celebrities and paparazzi together and there is sure to be some amazing photobombs taking place. I shall call you…Mini Me photobomb.


Hasselhoff photobomb. No explanation necessary.


My all time favorite photobombs are the ones that involve animals. Unintended and at times just creepy.



What will be the next viral fad? Only social media can tell us!



10 Social Media Admissions

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10 things we all do/feel but won’t admit

1. After posting a status update on Facebook, you refresh the page every minute for the next hour via the computer or smart phone to check the number of likes and comments that post received. With each new like you feel a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment.







2. After following a bunch of people on Twitter, you obsessively check to see if your follower numbers have increased over the next couple of days.

3. You pin what you think is a great picture on Pinterest and are disappointed when no one repins it.








4. The emotions of being unfriended on Facebook – First it’s a sense of anger which soon turns to hopelessness and eventually you justify the reasons behind the action – for me it’s because I changed my last name when I got married which makes me barely recognizable on Facebook.

5. You selfishly like other pictures on Instagram, hoping they like yours back.

6. You remove the year of your birthdate from Facebook but not the year you graduated college. The point of that is???








7. You feel strongly that retweeting is better done manually.

8. You think less of a person when they have a grammatical or spelling error in their Facebook status update.

9. You often times feel like a stalker because of your activity on Facebook.

10. You have limited your  profile viewing on Linkedin because of the feature, “Who’s Viewed Your Profile?” Instead you stalk people every other way possible.

The Facebook Birthday Post

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The Facebook Birthday post is something that is no stranger to most of us. If you read Elizabeth’s post, this annual experience was Tuesday for me. Once a year, our pages are flooded with tons of Facebook “Happy Birthday” posts. They come in all shapes and sizes.

1. Your close friends: They write on your wall out of true, genuine interest in the excitement around your birthday.

2. Long lost friends: These are the posts from people that you still consider your friend but have grown apart due to moving or life changes. These can have more meaning and will possibly reconnect you!

3. The non-friend: You may have friends on Facebook that you do not know. By ‘do not know’ I mean you literally have never met this person but decided to accept their friendship request on some kind of whim. Maybe it was an “I-am-new-to-Facebook-and-want-more-friends” decision or you just thought that person was particularly attractive. They most likely just wish all their non-friend Facebook friends Happy Birthday when they see that little calendar reminder on the right hand side of their news feed.

4. The Randoms: My favorite birthday posts. These people fall somewhere between the non friend and the long lost friend category and they come out of the absolute woodworks to wish you happy birthday. Your old babysitter, your 2nd grade boyfriend or your even your college professor that you still question how you became friends on Facebook in the first place. These people will write on our wall as if you are old buddies. Thank you Facebook birthday reminders!

The Power of Social Media

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Never has the power of social media been more prevalent than in the case of Jennifer Livingston and her husband’s support of her on his personal Facebook page. Livingston, a news anchor in Wisconsin, received an email from a viewer complaining about her size and how she isn’t a “suitable example” for the community’s younger people that see her on television. She took the air last week to defend herself after the attack on her weight.

The email went viral after her husband, a fellow anchor, posted it on his Facebook page. His Facebook posts on the subject have gotten an overwhelming response, with one post receiving over 60,000 comments.

Livingston addressed the issue on-air last week and if you haven’t seen it, take some time out of your day to watch her video below, as her message is an important one:

Jennifer Livingston Bullying Response

Livingston has said she has received thousands of responses on her Facebook page, thanking her for speaking out against bullies and sharing their personal experiences with her.

Since October is National Anti-Bullying Awareness Month, her message couldn’t come at a more opportune time. Her message “to all of the children out there who feel lost, who are struggling with your weight, with the color of your skin, your sexual preference, your disability, even the acne on your face, listen to me right now: Do not let your self-worth be defined by bullies. Learn from my experience — that the cruel words of one are nothing compared to the shouts of many,” is a timely one. And the shouts of many have poured out on social media outlets, showing their support. If nothing else, it has started a discussion. And for people who feel bullied or insecure or lost, it’s encouraging to know you’re not alone. If only social media could always be used in such a positive, encouraging manner, the world would be a better, more tolerant place.

Gif it up for Gossip Genie

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After Lindsey’s awesome gif post on Friday, I felt inspired to gif it up!

Here is how the Genies react to success and hard work at Gossip Genie!

When a client writes us a glowing testimonial 








When we reached 1,000 likes on the Gossip Genie Facebook page 







When Gossip Genie won the Office Depot Small Business Makeover







When we finish monthly reports









When Facebook, Twitter, Hootsuite or Sprout are down

How to: Use Popcorn & Social Media to help the U.S. Troops

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Along with October apparently being National Pizza Month, National Dessert Month, National Vegetarian Month, and National Apple Month, it is also National Popcorn Month! This has a bit more significance to Gossip Genie because of our client, Kernel Season’s Popcorn Seasoning. This year, we wanted to come up with different ideas on how to get fans more engaged without simply giving away product but at the same time still standing out above their competitors for doing something meaningful and memorable.  In the past, Kernel Season’s has had a unique relationship with the U.S. military, providing them with popcorn and seasonings to allow our soldiers to feel more at home while deployed. They have even received several awards from multiple divisions based on their efforts!


In August, we met with Kernel Season’s CEO, Brian Taylor and started brainstorming ideas. Brian was fully supportive of a way to help give back this month and we decided that it would be fun for the fans to tell us about “The Kernel” in their life by posting a photo of their military, community or personal hero. The homonym relationship between “Kernel”and “Colonel” is perfect for this type of initiative. In exchange, Kernel Season’s will donate an entire case of popcorn seasonings overseas to the U.S. Troops via a partnership with Support Our Troops. With minimal effort, our fans are able to help the U.S. soliders overseas feel a little more at home.  Also, it gives us an opportunity to touch a very specific market, military families.


I reached out to many military support website and blogs and the responses were overwhelming and extremely supportive of our plan! On October 1st, the campaign officially launched. Bloggers and websites we partnered with have already started posting about our campaign and fans have begun posting pictures. Each picture represents our fans’ willingness to help Kernel Season’s give back to the U.S. Troops! You can help out too by posting a photo on their Facebook wall today of your hero and Kernel Season’s will donate a case of seasonings to the troops!