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Gossip Genie Blog

Wedding Planner + Social Media = One Amazing Day

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This morning, I told Laurel that if my blog were a baby, it would be dead right now. I have been seriously neglecting my blog because of the madness that is currently my life.

As I enter the final stages of my planning my wedding. I wanted to share with you the impact the Internet, specifically social media has had on all of my decisions. I am a Chicago born, bred and based bride who decided to have her wedding in Arizona. My fiancé is not from Arizona, he’s from Minnesota. My family has a second home in Phoenix and I have always loved it there so I decided to do something different and host my wedding at my family’s home. I thought it would be a piece of cake, I had the venue, the groom, the date, and what else would I need? A LOT! Reality set in when I registered on the Knot.com and they emailed me a wedding checklist of 150 items that I needed to complete before the big day. I did not even know where to start so I started searching on Google for Arizona based wedding planners. After sorting through a ton of people that I knew I wouldn’t connect with, I found my planner.

I instantly connected with her just by looking at her website. I thought it was too good to be true and prayed that she had my date available…she did! I consider myself extremely lucky to have found Ashley because she is amazing at what she does and I have such respect and admiration for her. I cannot say enough good things about Ashley. Trust me when I say that she will dominate the industry very soon. Check out her  her fabulous blog www.ashleygainblog.com,  follow her on Twitter and Like her Facebook business page. Ashley radiates with positive energy and her enthusiasm for what she does makes planning a wedding an incredible journey.

It may sound strange but it was important to me that all of the vendors I chose to work with understood the importance of social media.

Social media has had a huge impact on my decision to hire many of the vendors that I chose.

Save The Dates – my fiancé and I wanted to do these pictures in Chicago so I used Yelp to find someone that had amazing reviews and was reasonably priced – Peter Coombs was perfect! It worked out very well –

It would have been nice to use Peter to shoot our wedding but travel and accommodations for a photographer were not in our budget. Therefore, Ashley set up a bunch of meetings with Arizona based photographers. Ultimately, I chose Radiant photography, they do amazing work and out of all of the photographers I researched, Radiant had the most likes on their Facebook page.

Videographer – Again, Ashley connected me with the unbelievably talented group, Bright Bokeh. Every wedding video they create makes me cry, in a good way. Like them on Facebook to see what I am talking about   or follow them on Twitter.

Cake – Ashley let me indulge in my love of sugar and gave me a few options. Ultimately, I chose the bakeshop with the best reviews and a great Facebook presence. Actually, the cake I was originally going to have them create was trumped when they posted a picture on their Facebook page of a cake that I knew had to be mine. They tripled their profit from me by taking the time to post updates on Facebook. Sorry, I can’t reveal my cake before the wedding, I think it’s bad luck! Here are a few to enjoy by Classic Cakes & Confections
Without Ashley, I would be clueless., she has lead me to all of these vendors and social media helped me decide whether or not I wanted to work with them.

Win Big on Facebook

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I never understood how many opportunities there were to win things in the social media world until I worked in it. We have all seen these contests and giveaways advertised on Facebook but, so often we never think to actually enter. Is it our assumption that we will not win? Are we lazy? Or do we just feel we don’t have the creative brain power to do what the page is asking? Whatever it may be, push these fears and insecurities aside because you are missing out on tons of great things.

I am going to give you two personal experiences, and both are outside any contest Gossip Genie has promoted for a client. Exhibit A- City Swarm Chicago. They bring organized events to social Chicagoans ranging from meeting up at bars (2 free drinks included) to seeing plays—all at a discounted rate. Back in May after Memorial Day weekend, City Swarm asked their Facebook fans “What did you do this weekend? Comment below & we’ll randomly select one person to win 2 free tickets to our event at Epic Sky.”  I commented with something along the lines of “laid by the pool and sipped on cocktails.” Boom. I won. Turns out, only myself and one other person commented. Because I was the first to comment, I won 2 free tickets to the event. Sometimes it does pay to be the first person to the party.

Exhibit B- Burrito Beach; A Mexican food chain located in the Chicago area. Their contest asked you to take a picture of yourself in front of a Burrito Beach—okay… this involved a little more activity but there are six locations all in Chicago. Next, you had to post the picture on the Burrito Beach Facebook wall, tell them why you love burrito beach and you were entered to win one 1-day pass to Lollapalooza. Of course, Jacqui and I drove right to Burrito Beach, snapped our picture, made up a short poem about their food. One week later, we were notified we won! Simple as that. Now you’ve learned your lesson. “Like” your favorite brands, restaurants, businesses, etc, on Facebook and you never know what they’ll be giving away!

$14,342,819,149,604.76 #nationaldebt

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[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBoYYc1APr8]

Fourteen trillion, three hundred forty two billion, eight hundred nineteen million, one hundred forty nine thousand, six hundred and four dollars and 76 cents. By the time I finished that sentence, our national debt has already increased.  I had to go back to my middle school years when thinking of how to pronounce a number that large. The national debt has become a heated debate across the nation as the countdown continues to credit default on August 2nd. While many of you are off watching CNN and CNBC, I spend most of my day on social media sites finding all relevant news.  In doing so, I came across the National Debt’s Twitter account (@NationalDebt) as well as an overly depressing website, USDebtClock.org,  that totals the the debt of each segment of the country every second. Welp- Happy Friday!

 Me either, Greg. 

 

Comparison of $1,000,000,000,000 dollars to a standardized sized American Football field and European Football field. To see what our almost $15 trillion debt amount would look like, visit http://usdebt.kleptocracy.us/

What Not to Post: Tweets Recent Grads Shouldn’t Send

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Now that job recruiters are seeking out potential employees through Facebook and Twitter, many recent college graduates have become hesitant as to what they will post on their social media sites. This young woman, however, does not seem to be concerned with her future career as she enjoys her last job-less summer while tweeting away from her public Twitter account.

And here’s a tweet you shouldn’t post no matter who you are.

 

Social Petworking: Facebook’s Newest Superstar – ALFIE

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After reading, Social ‘Petworking’: the top 10 pets on social networks, I knew it was time to introduce the world to my pride & joy, my nearly 2 year old, oversized, abnormally long bodied (see pic) Havanese.Despite the fact that I felt guilty taking the time to create a Facebook page for Alfie, I knew it was necessary. The extra time I spent carefully crafting Alfie’s Facebook debut will cost me a little bit of extra time servicing my paying clients which I will make up for at some point during the wee hours of the morning. Running a company, planning a wedding and being involved in endless negotiations associated with a short sale, leaves me with minimal free time, less sleep and several unwatched episodes of Teen Mom.

However, should Alfie and I meet again in another lifetime and our roles were to be reversed, I can’t imagine the punishment I would receive as for not celebrating Alfie’s life via a Facebook page.

Alfie, aka “The Mini Cow” comes from a mother that weighs 10lbs, a father that weighs 12lbs, his brother weighs 11lbs and his sister weighs 9lbs and Alfie is 25lbs. More to love, right? Anyway, Alfie was Gossip Genie’s first official employee or rather company mascot.  Obviously, my fiancé and I think he is the cutest, best dog in the world, so naturally we took him to a modeling agency we found on Craigslist about a year ago. The agency required us to spend about $100 on professional photos because they guaranteed us Alfie would be the next “big thing.” We are still waiting for a call from them. With his tubular obese physique we had to come to terms with the fact that our dog just didn’t have the body for modeling. The only way to make him a star is through Facebook. Which is exactly what we are going to do. If you’re jealous of this superstar, too bad, the gene pool stops here. Alfie is super smart but that never got anyone laid in college, so we took that option off the table and neutered him.

I regret not livestreaming that procedure for all to see online. From every poop to every pee, not to worry, Alfie’s life from this point forward will be documented on his Facebook page. Okay, just the cute stuff, so please like Alfie on Facebook!

#notguilty

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The entire time I have been watching and hearing about the Casey Anthony trial – I am reminded of Diane Downs, the woman that shot her 3 young children in order to make herself more available and attractive to the man she was dating. From a psychological perspective, Diane Downs and Casey Anthony are very similar, both sociopaths and psychopathic liars. Downs is in jail for life, Anthony will be free in a matter of hours. When Downs was on trial, Facebook was not even a thought in the mind of (most-likely at the time) the fetus that would develop into Mark Zuckerberg. Tweet was nowhere near being a mainstream verb. Social media was not yet in existence. The opinions publicized were only from people involved in the case. 28 years later, everyone can publicize an opinion on Casey Anthony’s case.

Casey Anthony, synonymous with baby killer. According to social media, she is guilty but an Orlando jury of 12 declared her “not guilty” yesterday. Outrage over the verdict erupted on Facebook and Twitter. Tons of posts and tweets that compared Casey Anthony to OJ Simpson.

Thanks to Twitter, here are a few celebrity tweets regarding yesterdays verdict:

Kim Kardashian: WHAT!!!!???!!!! CASEY ANTHONY FOUND NOT GUILTY!!!! I am speechless!!!”

Carson Daily: This is Bull(Bleep)

Mandy Moore: I’m from Orlando and have been hooked on the trial the last few weeks. the defense team was abysmal! this is shocking! poor, poor caylee.

After the shock set in, the jokes came – Tomorrow’s sentencing will likely cause another outrage, especially if Casey is freed for time served.

Casey Anthony has become a celebrity for murdering her 2 year old daughter – that’s worse than how Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian became celebrities. Let me leave you with a disgusting website that is basically promoting sex with female murders…Lizzie Borden, really?

Are you suffering from “Popcorn Brain”?

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“Popcorn Brain” — a brain so accustomed to the constant stimulation of electronic multitasking that we’re unfit for life offline, where things pop at a much slower pace.

Reading this blog right now could be a symptom of your very own Popcorn Brain.

CNN recently published an article on this ability, or disability-depending on how you use it. After self-diagnosing my self with Popcorn Brain, I started to see how much it truly effects my day. I often find myself eagerly awaiting each web page to load. At times, I become so anxious, I open another tab and begin a completely different task while the other page loads.While watching a television show on my DVR, my roommate skips through the commercials. In the 10 seconds it takes to reach the program, I have already began reading tweets on my Twitter iPhone application.

We all do it-and I will be impressed if you get through this entire blog post without checking your e-mail or cell phone…If you do, then  I am proud to hold your attention to this point. Call it Popcorn Brain, or ADD. Either way, the human race has become so addicted and accustomed to the speed and convenience of technology that we crave it day in and day out. Doing an everyday activity, such as waiting for the microwave to finish can feel like it takes much longer after being exposed to luxuries like high speed internet and the capability to have an endless amount of information at our fingertips.

Check out these quotes from fellow Popcorn Brain sufferers:

“I never know what the next tweet is going to be. Who’s sent me an e-mail? What will I find with the next click of the mouse? What’s waiting for me?” says Cash, who practices in Redmond, Washington. “But I know what’s waiting for me in my garden.

I take a walk with my husband and I can’t resist the urge to check my e-mail. I feel guilty, but I do it.”

At this point in my life, I am thankful for my Popcorn Brain as it allows me to do many things at once during the work day. If you’re worried about your symptoms The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction offers a virtual Internet addiction test that can help you decide how serious your popcorn brain is.

Bashing of the Bachelorette

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It’s that time of year; summer has begun, all of our favorite television shows have ended and many of us hopeless romantics, or those who just enjoy watching a cheesy reality show unfold, have to succumb to watching the Bachelorette.  This leaves us time to discuss who is being bashed this season. Instead of finding one of the contestants to poke fun of, I (along with the rest of the viewers) am going to have to go right for the Bachelorette herself, Ashley Herbert. Bless her heart, but this poor girl has completely humiliated herself this season. The fun-loving, bubbly dentist finds herself falling for the bad boy, Bentley, even after she was warned by a previous Bachelor contestant that he is bad news (nicknamed “Bad News Bentley). Bentely, sweet to Ashley’s face, sour behind her back, leaves the show because “he misses his daughter,” when in reality he has no interest in pursuing Ashley. While reading my Twitter feed during each episode, it becomes more apparent that viewers are quite annoyed with Ashley’s inability to move on from this creep.

 

Here are some of the infamous Bentley quotes (From Omg.Yahoo.com)

On being a douche: “The competition makes it exciting, competing for her. That’s the extent in terms of my interest. You know, I mean, she’s just not my type.”

 

On marrying Ashley: “I mean, that just sounds terrible. I would literally rather be, like, swimming in pee than trying to plan my wedding with her. Because I’m not thinking like, omigosh, this is like the girl of my dreams. I’m thinking, like, she’s not my type.”

 

On winning an “immunity” rose, Ashley’s affections: “Can we just bag this and go play blackjack? … It’s almost like the game’s over before we even push the start button. Like, let’s not even play.”

 

On potentially kissing Ashley: “Actions speak louder than words. Do I need to force this kiss? Do I need to ram my tongue down her throat?”

 

On actually kissing Ashley: “That was kind of a bor — It started out good but it sucked towards the end. But it’s more of, like, an expected feeling. I’d be lying to everyone if I’m, like, ‘Yeah, I’m in this ’til the end. I’m gonna ride this out for two months.’ There’s no way I’m going to last that long.”

 

On his plans to leave the show on next week’s episode: “I came in thinking that Ashley was not attractive at all. I’m not feeling it. … I’m gonna make Ashley cry. I hope my hair looks OK.”