Gossip Genie Blog

Facebook is Not Free

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Old Spice Commerical As one of the world’s largest manufacturers of consumer goods, Procter & Gamble has earned the title of the world’s top marketer. This also means they have the highest annual ad budget ($10 billion), which I have to say, was well spent when those Old Spice ads began running a few years ago ;).  P&G received 1.8 billion in free impressions generated by this campaign – not too shabby!

A few days ago, current CEO Robert McDonald announced P&G is cutting marketing costs and focusing more on utilizing Facebook to reach their audiences. He told Wall Street analysts that he would have to “moderate” his ad budget because Facebook and Google can be “more efficient” than the traditional media that usually eats the lion’s share of P&G’s ad budget. Wow, he’s JUST coming to this realization? I’m not saying he’s wrong, but the headline from Business Insider that explained the story was a little misleading, “P&G To Lay Off 1,600 After Discovering It’s Free To Advertise On Facebook.”

People need to stop citing that it’s FREE to advertise on Facebook. It’s not. A business needs to budget for social media strategists, a social media plan, Facebook Ads, creation of content, etc. – there are a lot of moving parts to maintaining a fruitful social media presence.  However, I do think allocating more of their ad dollars to social branding is a step in the right direction for P&G. Facebook seems to agree as they favorably cited P&G in their IPO released yesterday:

“Procter & Gamble chose to advertise on Facebook to generate awareness for Secret deodorant’s “Mean Stinks” program and selected a female audience likely to be receptive to the campaign. The ad featured a confessional-style video of a girl admitting that she had bullied others, realizing the damage she had caused, and apologizing. In the 26 weeks after the Mean Stinks campaign launched, Secret experienced a 9% increase in U.S. sales and an increase in engagement with its Facebook Page.”FB Landing Page for P&G Brand Secret's

While our clients are all aware of the necessity and relevance of designating funds to social media in their marketing budgets, there are many who are just discovering and realizing the potential of these social streams. It’s time for an intervention: If you or someone you know would like to reach your target audience via the channels that they spend the majority of their time online, hire a social media team.


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Lululemon, everyone’s favorite, over-priced yoga gear had a warehouse sale this past weekend. The brand is notorious for never marking their items down more than 20%, therefore a warehouse sale rumored to have mark-downs near 50% was a bargain-hunting lulu lover’s dream. To inform the public about their upcoming sale, Lululemon decided to create a Facebook event invite and communicate sale “teasers,” waiting times, merchandise pictures and FAQ’s via social media. The Facebook event invite went from 0 RSVPs to 5,000 in a matter of hours. As the questions started to flood the event wall on Facebook, it was clear this was not for the fair-weathered lulu fan. People flew in from Ohio, Minnesota and Detroit to attend this sale. I spent a good deal of time researching what this process would be like and decided to read the tweets from sale attendees the previous weekend in Ottawa. After learning that I could be waiting in line for up to 6 hours, my dedication to Groove Pants was questioned until my girlfriend, fellow attendee gave me a pep talk.

The next thing I knew, my alarm was beeping at 5:30am and I was awakened from an anxious dream about having missed the Lululemon sale. The first thing I did was pull up the #LululemonWHUS Twitter feed and tweeted to @LululemonWHUS and asked how the lines were -(no response, which I took as a good sign). By 6:30am we were 15th in line waiting for the doors to open at 7am just to wait another 2 hours indoors. The line:

Was it worth it? YES! I did quite well – my total purchase amounted to $341 and all the items I purchased are currently on sale full price in the store – had I purchased everything at the store, my total would have been $715

Check out what other people were saying on the  Lululemon Warehouse Sale Chicago 2012

William was just mugged BUT he still can’t get those sweatpants off of his mind…Clearly he is mocking the fanatics because

Not sure I would agree with Tanya but to each his own!

3:30 am wake-up call = dedication

People admitting to “flying in” for the sale, clearly Lauren is not a true Lulu fan (in her response to Mara) she suggests not checking bags at O’hare, obviously, Mara was talking about the Lulu sale!

Another male mocking the lulu fanatics 

Today – my arms are still sore from the pile of clothes I grabbed in an effort to give myself choices before committing. In the end – I went home with all of this:

Let’s Get Listed by Elizabeth

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As common as someone asking, “where did you grow up?” I find myself being asked, “Are you on Facebook?” as soon as we are introduced. Years ago, I would have hesitated at such an outright request, but ever since Facebook updated it’s (still very confusing, but getting there) privacy settings, I have less of an issue adding acquaintances as friends and designating them into their rightful list. One popular list that Facebook creates for you is the family list – because not everyone wants to see photos of your grandmother’s 90th birthday party. I am a firm believer in people utilizing these lists for groups such as their close friends, work acquaintances, college friends, family members and so on. This also means your professional Facebook friends are less likely to “hide” your posts if they’re not seeing every check-in from Foursquare and updates about what you ate for dinner.

Let’s get back to business. Unless I don’t know you at ALL, I am most likely going to accept your friendship. After all, social networking is about building relationships and connecting with people. It increases your opportunity to network with others – people you may not know. I have found the answer to countless questions posting my inquiries on Facebook and waiting for the “oh so prompt” Facebook Gods/my network to respond. In everyday conversation, I find myself answering my friends questions with “I don’t know, I think you should post that question on Facebook.” While I may go to Yelp to see if the new dentist I chose is legit, I will probably start by asking my network if they can recommend the right DDS for the job.

The moral of the story is, use Facebook for all of it’s glory, don’t discount a friend request because you don’t want them creeping around your page. Change your settings to your liking and accept away. You never know who knows who, and the more the merrier when it comes to power of social networking.

3 Reasons Not to Watch This Season of The Bachelor

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If the title of this blog post grabbed your attention because you agree with me, then I have already accomplished something today. This season of the Bachelor has been a big snooze fest in my opinion. There are a few factors that play into this.

1.) Two words: Reality Steve. If you haven’t already heard of him and you hate surprises, I am about to make your day. This guy receives all of the inside scoop on each season of the Bachelor/Bachelorette AS IT IS BEING FILMED. He will tell you all the nitty gritty details from each episode as well as the winner of the MOST DRAMATIC ROSE CEREMONY EVER. His posts are extremely witty and he does not hold back when making fun of the contestants; a guilty pleasure at the very least.

As usual, we can always find someone in the Twitterverse to agree with us!

2.) Ben is boring. All of those Ben lovers out there are going to find this hard to read but Ben is just not meant for reality television! I am sure he’s a very nice guy in person but as far as reality dating shows go, we all want to see a little more action. I have not figured out of it is his mono-toned voice or just the way the show has been edited but as each Monday night passes, I find myself zoning out into Pinterest land while the episode airs. All you pinners know what I’m talking about.

3. )  Pyscho girls. Is it the show that makes a young woman this insane or is it a requirement for the casting department? From blogger Jenna Burke’s meltdown to  Blakesley and Monica’s bizarre flirting scene, after 16 seasons of watching this dramatic show, I think I’ve had enough.


Who am I kidding…until next season.

Divorce (Irreconcilable Differences, HOLLYWOOD or FACEBOOK?)

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As a newlywed, the thought of divorce makes me sick to my stomach.  My husband and I were on day 1 of our honeymoon when we heard about Kim Kardashian splitting from Kris Humphries. Despite the fact that we all saw it coming, I still felt a twinge of sadness because to me, marriage is so sacred and special.

Hollywood has really facilitated the deterioration of what marriage means. Hollywood is only partly to blame for the prevalence of divorce. Our beloved social network, Facebook, has been cited as the cause for one in five divorces according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

In Hollywood, the likelihood of your marriage last more than 3 years is slim.“The divorce rate among celebrities may be as high as 80 percent,” said celebrity divorce lawyer Raul Felder. This week in LA, divorce seems to be contagious! Katy Perry and Russell Brand and more shockingly, Heidi Klum and Seal (my go-to couple for beating the Hollywood odds) are trending on Twitter today because they are getting a divorce. I doubt the cause of their separation has anything to do with Facebook but it’s certainly fueled social conversations.









Facebook connects people, therefore, it’s great for businesses, it connects my clients to their customers. On the contrary, from a personal side Facebook can offer temptations that would not be present otherwise. People that have been married for 20 years join Facebook and reignite with old flames and this destroys their marriage. I believe that the people that succumb to Facebook temptations would find another outlet for their infidelity if Facebook did not exist.

The World’s Largest Virtual Popcorn Party

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If you haven’t heard, Thursday is National Popcorn Day and our client, Kernel Season’s does not treat this holiday like any other day. They are doing it BIG!..with the World’s Largest Virtual Popcorn Party! Social media is a perfect way to bring all the popcorn lovers of the world together for this special day. The Twitter and Facebook fans of Kernel Season’s are some of the most enthusiastic fans I have seen and that is why we love them here at Gossip Genie. We created a Facebook event for the big day and within 10 minutes already had 100+ RSVP’s! We will also be using the hashtag #VirtualPopcornParty so feel free to give them a shout out this week. Not only do these people love their popcorn, they are huge supporters of the Kernel Season’s tag line “No More Naked Popcorn,” promoting the use of their exceptionally delicious sweet, salty (and sometimes both)  seasonings.

If  you want to join the “No More Naked Popcorn” Revolution and celebrate National Popcorn Day with Kernel Season’s, RSVP here. All day long they will be giving away some amazing prizes and up until the big day,  be sure to enter to win a Popcorn Cart!

Popcorn = Rape (According to Facebook Ads)

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Creating a Facebook ad is like playing the game Apples to Apples. Precise Interest targeting lets you define your ideal audience by what they are interested in, using terms people have shared in their Facebook profiles. These may be drawn from their listed interests, activities, education and job titles, pages they like or groups to which they belong.

Recently, Facebook has added a feature when you input precise interests – it’s called, “Suggested Likes & Interests.” These are relative terms that are automatically generated to use at your discretion. For instance, you would assume that if you type in the term “popcorn,” suggested likes and interests would include, “Caramel Corn,” “Movie theater snacks,” “Kettle Corn” and so on…Well, guess again. I was creating an ad for our client, Kernel Season’s Popcorn Seasoning (RSVP to their upcoming event, “The World’s Largest Virtual Popcorn Party” on January 19th) and take a look at the suggested likes and interests that Facebook recommended:
Apparently, RAPE and POPCORN go hand in hand…
I refreshed several times and got the same result…
A few days later, I was creating another ad for my client, Lotus Blossom Consulting (an infertility consultant) looking to target people talking about pregnancy via Facebook.
 Apparently this is the context in which people discuss pregnancy on Facebook – there must be someone out there posting status updates like this (FYI THIS IS NOT ME, THIS IS AN EXAMPLE), “During my adolescencealcohol intoxication lead to sexual intercourse for money, in essence, prostitution. This resulted in an unwanted pregnancy, so I had an abortion   because the thought of childbirth scares me.”
My current goal is to find a post on Facebook that connects popcorn to rape…

The Simplicity of a Sour Patch Kid

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Do you ever wonder who the face might be behind a great Facebook fan page? I recently was wondering this when Jacqui introduced me to the Sour Patch Kids Facebook fan page. To me, this is an excellent example of a successful Facebook page. From clever posts to the “Human of the Week“, and even a rap music video – “World Gone Sour”- featuring Method Man and the Sour Patch Kids! They have managed to keep each post simple and original such as ” ‘Liar, liar, pants on fire’ must have happened at least once. Consider that a warning, liars” and “Are the holidays over yet? I have things to do like ignore my New Year’s resolutions.” Each post is crafted with humor and wit that I wouldn’t mind meeting the face behind the page!

The posts don’t always relate to the sweet yet sour candy delights but, I think this is what makes it stand out. No Facebook fan wants to see links to the company’s website everyday urging fans to buy their product or service. These are necessary from time to time but, maintaining a specific voice through the page and keeping it light, positive, and funny is what makes me want to click that little “Like” button at the top of the page. The Sour Patch Kids page also is not overcrowded with tabs and promotions. Humans are simple and are more likely to navigate through a page or website with a simple format . To wrap things up, when creating your own Facebook page, remember these words — Less.Is.More! Or…if you don’t know how to do that, Gossip Genie can surely give you a helping hand!

Tweeting Celebs by Cassidy VanSlyke

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Since a young age I was enthralled by the glamorous lives of celebrities. I would daydream about what it would be like to have the paparazzi chasing me, or a boyfriend who made millions playing for the NBA. In the early nineties tabloids and magazines were our only source of celebrity indulgence. Now we have Twitter, allowing us an all access pass to the daily thoughts of the rich and famous. As I began cruising twitter for the top ten most popular celebrity Twitter accounts of 2011, I was left with little shock.

According to @LadyGaga holds 11% of all Forbes Celebrity 100 Twitter following, with well over 17 million followers. Her universal success within the music industry and online popularity assisted her in ranking in 90 million dollars last year. Lady Gaga never fails to surprise us, with her on-stage antics or newest fashion display. This is why I consider her a must to follow. For pure entertainment value try following Twitter’s #4 celebrity @KimKardashian. Her rantings about her extravagant lifestyle and her ridiculous family never fail to amuse. Not all celebrity tweeters ramble about irrelevant issues, for more political and informative postings about the daily doings of our country follow our very own President,  @BarackObama, rated #6 by Twitter. As for my personal favorite, add a dash of wit and humor to your day by checking out television host Steven Colbert (@StephenAtHome) who tweets with absolutely no filter. I am no longer left to my imagination pondering the mysterious lives celebrities; I merely switch on my computer and begin indulging via Twitter. For the latest celebrity tweets and polls check out

Who do you think will top the Twitter charts in 2012?