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Gossip Genie

Tips to Tackle the 2018 Instagram Algorithm

By | Social Media, Uncategorized, Words of Advice | One Comment

If you’re starting to detect Facebook vibes coming from Instagram lately, you’re not the only one. Algorithm changes to both platforms that have taken effect, and have left some users scratching their heads, powerless as engagement and reach decline rapidly. You may be wondering, “can we ever win?!” As frustrating as it seems, there are a few ways to beat these new algorithm changes. The genies are here to show you how.

Engagement – where? 👀

Problem: Like + comment levels are plummeting

Solution:

Did you spend ages crafting your latest post? Caption on point, paired with a perfectly picturesque photo? Great! Unfortunately, Instagram now releases your content to just 10% of your followers to start. If those 10 % double-tap your donut pic to death, then congratulations, the other 90% will magically find your picture in their feed. If engagement is poor from the beginning, chances are it’ll stay that way unless you intervene.

First of all, if you can add a location tag to your photos 📍, do so. This increases the chance that your post will emerge in the explore tab and be pushed to followers outside your current audience. Another tip is to explicitly fish for engagement in your copy. “Double-tap if you think pufferfish are the coolest animal, land or sea” is just one example that popped into my head. Ask your audience to engage, and they often will.

Get Talking 💬

Problem: Emojis and short comments no longer count

Solution:

Gone are the days that users could hack their way to the top using comment pods – groups of followers that leave short comments in bulk like “nice pic” and “cute post” in order to boost reach. Now, Instagram has apparently implemented a strict 4-word comment policy. Simply put, only comments that are longer than 4 words will count as post engagement. While this seems a little unfair (I often leave a 😍 emoji on my friends’ posts to show genuine love), you can get around with some carefully crafted copy. Next post, try this: “In four words or more, tell us why you love ____ below. We can’t wait to read your answers!”

One more tip: try responding to comments within an hour of recieving them. Word on the street says that this is an easy way to generate higher engagment rates, and that Instagram rewards accounts that reply to their fans quickly.

#HashtagHeadache 🤕

Problem: Hashtags in comments no longer show up in the explore tab

Solution:

Rumor has it, what used to be a hack to keep posts cleaner and the feed shorter for followers now results in low reach and hidden posts. Instead of concealing hashtags in the first comment of your photos, select strong ones that are highly relevant to your brand and the content you are producing. Add them directly to your caption like we’ve done below👇. Switch them up for each post depending on the subject, and never use the fully allotted 30 hashtags. You may get shadowbanned. And now that users can follow hashtags, you’ll get a lot of fresh eyes on your content if you keep them short, sweet, and relevant.

Story Time 📚

Problem: Followers aren’t interacting with me like they used to

Solution:

The new algorithm LOVES stories. Brands that are the most active in this space stay on the top of their follower’s minds (and feed – literally). You might notice as you scroll Instagram, stories pop up every so often between posts, with previews that tempt you to tap tap tap!

If you’re stressed about this increase in work, don’t fret! Think of them as enhancements to your regularly posted content. Take that day’s subject and expand on it in your story. Ask a simple question via poll, add some GIFS (new to Instagram), or host a Live story and give fans a behind-the-scenes look at your products. Stories are just one more level of fan interaction that your brand cannot afford to overlook.

 

Notice Me 🔔

Problem: Followers that WANT to see your updates don’t see them

Solution:

We certainly can’t expect that our followers want to see every single piece of content we post without fail, right? Wrong! Believe it or not, if you understand your audience and produce quality content, many loyal fans will want to see it all. Case and point, I love #foodporn so much, I check @BuzzfeedFood daily just to watch their short clips and imagine I’m eating them.

The simplest way to help these loyalists see your posts is to remind them of post notifications. It’s the option you get when you tap the … in the corner of any Instagram profile. Once those are switched on, that follower will be notified whenever you post! Can you realistically expect 50, 40, 30% of your followers to do this? Heck no. But getting even a handful of fans to select this option can help when you’re experiencing engagement drought. Dedicate one IG Story this week to reminding your followers to turn on post notifications for your account. We dare ya!

 

Did we miss any Instagram algorithm tips, tricks or hacks? Let us know in the comments below!

Lights, Camera, Engagement!

By | Client Content, Client Showcase, Digital Media, Gossip Genie Blog, Helpful Information, Social Media, Social Media Spotlight, Videography, What's Trending, Words of Advice | No Comments

It’s no coincidence that every time you scroll down your newsfeed, you are immediately inundated with videos. The secrets out, video content reigns supreme as the best way to generate engagement for a brand. According to a report from HubSpot43% of people want to see more video content from marketers. Even better, 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI (Source: HubSpot).

However, that doesn’t mean spamming your audience with low effort videos is the answer to your engagement woes. The key to getting the audience’s attention is producing eye-catching, professional shots that highlight the best aspects of your brand. That’s where Gossip Genie comes in!

Bring your brand to life with the video production services offered at Gossip Genie! Here is just a sample of our work that has helped spark conversations, drive traffic, and reenergize the newsfeeds of our clients.

ANNOUNCEMENTS – Creating a powerful announcement video helps create valuable buzz surrounding your product or event.

 

Posted by Vision Expo on Wednesday, December 6, 2017

PRODUCT & EVENT SHOWCASES – Highlight specific initiatives or products with a montage of visually stimulating shots.

 

Posted by Matt’s Cookie Company on Monday, June 19, 2017

COVER VIDEOS – Welcome customers and keep them on your page with a reel of your brands best work.

 

Posted by Café Turino Italian Style Espresso on Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Holidays – Capitalize on unique social media holidays with time-sensitive, easily digestible videos.

#NationalSunglassesDay

Every day is #NationalSunglassesDay at Vision Expo!

Register for Vision Expo West 2017 to see all the latest sunnies, sunwear fashion trends, and cutting-edge lens technology: http://bit.ly/2rYh6AZ

Brand Specific Holidays – Create your own brand-centric hashtag and spread the word with a short, energetic video.

Frame Friday

The aisles of Vision Expo East will soon be a veritable fashion runway, featuring the latest eyewear trends under one roof! Featured frames: Lafont (Booth G723), Costa Sunglasses (Booth 1853), State Optical Co. (Booth G823), and Matsuda (Booth U503). #FrameFriday #VisionExpo

Register for Vision Expo East for FREE here: http://bit.ly/VEEreg2018

If you want to elevate your brand’s social media presence with video, contact us today.

#Mood: Why Mood Boards are a Must Have for your Brand

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Helpful Information | One Comment

Branding is all about consistency, consistency, consistency. Especially with the new year at our heels (which, can I just say, OMG what??), there’s no better time to think about refreshing your brand with a new focus and perspective. At Gossip Genie, we shine by helping businesses curate their vision. One way we do this for our clients is to create a mood board to capture the overall scope of each brand we manage. It’s unimaginably valuable to have someone constantly keeping an eye on your company’s public-facing image.

If you’re from outside the design space, a mood board can potentially be seen as unneccessary, and even a bit daunting. A good thing to keep in mind is that a mood board is essentially just visual brainstorming. There’s no better way to bring a team’s visions and ideas to life than to add imagery to them.

Here are a few things the genies keep in mind when creating a brand vision:

1. Word association

A good exercise to begin with is to jot down a list of words you hope consumers will associate with your brand. These are the thoughts and emotions that should spring to mind when followers view your content. If it’s an outdoor-themed business, you may generate words like “adventure, freedom, earthy, textured”. If it’s a food product, maybe “mouthwatering, decadent, creamy, aromatic”.

2. Visualize the vibe

Once you have your keywords narrowed down, begin collecting visuals from other brands that have the aesthetic you hope to achieve. There’s no shame in recognizing that there is a lot of inspo out there that can direct your own vision. Expand this by finding other images that add to the desired vibe of your brand. Collect them in one place. You should be able to pick up on an overarching visual theme, whether it be a focused color pallet, or a particular subject matter.

3. Get a second (and third) opinion

Once you’ve created your mood board, take it to a few fresh sets of eyes to get their perspective. Have them view the images without your list of keywords. Ask them to reveal the words and emotions that they feel when viewing your board. Do they match your vision? If so, success!

To close, feast your eyes on a few examples of how the Genies curate our client’s overall look to create a united, consistent, visually appealing social presence:

Vienna Beef Mood BoardInternational Vision Expo Mood Board

Naot Footwear Mood Board

Wigwam Socks Mood Board

How to Refresh Your Social Media Feed for 2018

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

As we get ready to bid adieu to 2017, it’s a great time to start thinking about your 2018 marketing initiatives and how you can breathe new life into your social media feeds. Take a look at some innovative campaigns that we have been running for our clients to reinvigorate their presence before the New Year.

Revamp Your Look

Head into 2018 by doing an audit of your social media channels and updating your cover photos, “about” section, logos, etc. Facebook recently implemented cover videos, which is a great way to revamp your page. Check out the Facebook cover video for our client Matt’s Cookies.

Run a Contest or Giveaway

Running a contest or giveaway on your social channels is one of the most impactful ways to increase engagement. Accounts that run contests on a regular basis are noted to grow 70% faster than those that don’t (Source: Sprout Social). Stay tuned for more info on holiday giveaways we’re implementing for our clients!

Implement a Social Media Takeover

Inject new life into your social media feed by allowing someone else to take over. Putting your account into someone else’s hands is a great way to get in front of a new audience, thus increasing your follower base and engagement. During our client VIsion Expo’s tradeshow in Las Vegas earlier this year, we had an influential optometrist take over the Vision Expo Instagram, resulting in our most popular Instagram posts and stories of the month. You can learn more about the takeover and Vision Expo here. 

Take Advantage of Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories are all the rage, essentially replacing Snapchat. It helps stay top of mind with your audience and is a cool way to introduce new content. Violet recently wrote about how to market your brand on Instagram, including using stories. Check it out here.

Utilize Short Video Content

Video is a must for any social media campaign. While long-form videos are useful in their own right, short, bite-sized clips (even an animated photo), can do a world of wonder to your social media’s organic reach and engagement. Short clips are easy to create and edit and can make a huge impact.

Team Up With Another Brand

This gives your brand exposure to another audience and co-marketing is a win-win situation for both brands. Consider a cross-promotional contest or giveaway, blog post exchange, or Instagram takeover.

How-to’s & Tutorials

Give your audience a little education with how-to posts, such as recipes. We regularly share recipes on our client Cafe Turino’s pages, which receive incredible engagement.

Go Live

People spend three times longer watching Facebook Live videos over pre-recorded content. Live streaming is a great way to answer questions and educate your audience. We recently hosted a few Facebook Lives on our client Vision Expo’s account to highlight their tradeshow exhibitors and answer questions from the audience.

Poll Your Audience

People love to share their opinion. Get a pulse on what your followers are into but polling them on Twitter. It’s a fun, easy, and unique way to engage your audience.

Share a Milestone

Celebrate your successes and victories with your followers! Hit over 100K fans on Facebook? Thank your audience and promote this milestone.

Update from the Genies

By | Gossip Genie Blog | 2 Comments

Transition is the word best used to describe the past couple of months at Gossip Genie. Restructuring internally is the toughest part of my job but in the end, it always works out the way it’s supposed to. That being said, we are grateful for our relatively new team members, Violet, Janelle and Lizz.

Violet is an assistant social media manager working 40 hours a week while in school full time. Let me just say, we all tell Violet that she’s our spirit animal because there is NOTHING she can’t do, furthermore, there is NOTHING she can’t do WELL and even furthermore, there is NOTHING she can’t do WELL and in half the time it takes the regular person. Despite being busier than most 19-year-olds, Violet is able to craft incredible content and produce amazing results for any demanding client.

We often laugh about how her peers are spending their time trying to start a fashion blog but most of them just appear to be narcissistic portraits of themselves that provoke the question, what are you looking at? This question is the result of these young “wannabe” fashion bloggers imitating Kylie Jenner. Cheers to Violet for spending her time doing something useful.

Lizz started with Gossip Genie a couple of months ago and it feels like she has been a part of the team for years. During her first month at Gossip Genie, she traveled to Las Vegas to represent Gossip Genie at Vision Expo West and blew us all away with her live social capabilities. Lizz is upbeat and easygoing which is contagious in the best way possible. She adds an element of humor to even the driest client and we are all impressed with what she has been able to accomplish for her clients in such a short amount of time.

Janelle started less than a month ago and while not recommended or advised, she came in yesterday morning basically on her deathbed. We sent her home and she is still doing work while actually on her deathbed. Janelle is working so hard to learn the ins and outs of her clients, she works well into the evening trying to absorb everything.

Not to mention, she is all about business development and has produced some very promising leads in less than 30 days at Gossip Genie.

Janelle and Lizz are already diving into the world of client photoshoots.

Our veterans are doing SO well.

Taryn’s 1 year Genieversary is today and we are all so grateful for everything she has contributed over the past year. Taryn has proven herself time and again. I admire her for so many reasons and one being that she doesn’t give up, despite how difficult a situation might be. Taryn is a ray of sunshine even on the darkest days.

Keenan was promoted to head of production and social media. He has allowed us to offer videography as a service and his work is praised by the clients that have chosen to add that service to their contracts. Keenie the Genie is such an asset to our team with his never-ending dad jokes and hilarious puns, he keeps us all sane during the most stressful times.

KEENAN FILMING AN INTERVIEW WITH LAFONT PARIS AT VISION EXPO EAST.

Anthony, as we all know, is the Dalai Lama of Social Media. Our team is thriving under his guidance and during the biggest challenges, he is always the voice of reason and reassurance. Anthony keeps us sane. In August, we celebrated his 5-year Genieversary and he knows we would all be lost without him.

Bringing the Buzz to Vision Expo West

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Social Media | No Comments

The Genies took over Las Vegas for Vision Expo West 2017 last month, marking the fourth time we’ve live covered the International Vision Expo on social media.

Vision Expo’s post-show press release noted the high volume of social media buzz during the event. “Social media buzz has reached an all-time high for Vision Expo, reaching almost 12 million impressions shortly after the show floor officially closed on Saturday,” said Melissa Ashley, Reed Exhibitions Senior Vice President. “We’re thrilled that attendees are sharing their excitement about the new collections and latest product launches previewed on the show floor, and engaging with the connections they’ve made via our new events and programs.”

This year’s Vision Expo West offered 182,000 square feet of exhibit space with more than 60 new fashion brands debuting fall lines, accessories and new eyewear trends throughout the high-end fashion pavilions and Gossip Genie was there to showcase it all through social media, photography, and videography.

Here are a few things we learned along the way:

1. Instagram Stories are a great way to capture the excitement of the show

Lizz, Instagram Story extraordinaire, covered all 182,000 square feet of the show floor through more than 14 minutes of Instagram Story footage and over 300 photos and videos uploaded to the three-day event’s Story. The Story allowed us to capture the exhibitors and the show floor in a unique way and offer a glimpse into what Vision Expo has to offer its attendees. Our Instagram stories resulted in over half of our total Instagram impressions and we noticed more views on Stories than Snapchat, which is something we will definitely be aware of for future events.

You can watch the full video here: https://splice.gopro.com/v?id=7wjDjZ

2. Influencers really do influence the audience

We invited a small group of influencers to attend the show and share blog posts and social media updates from the event. One of the influencers, GlamOptometrist, participated in an Instagram takeover of the Vision Expo account, resulting in some of our most engaged posts. 

3. Teamwork makes the dream work

It’s always a joy to bring the Gossip Genie team’s combined efforts together at live events like Vision Expo. Through everyone’s expertise, we reached over 3.4 million people through our social media posts and documented the show with over 2,500 professional photos and hours of video footage for Vision Expo marketing materials.

Check out the amazing photos from the event here and watch Keenan‘s extraordinary video work in this post-show video promoting Vision Expo 2018:

4. Working under pressure brings the best results

From running around to different events on the show floor to a last-minute photography job featuring Joey Fatone, I’ve often found that the pressure of live events always brings out amazing results. With an hour left in the show, I made Keenan’s anxiety fly through the roof by asking him to create a “Thank You” video to post at the end of the show.  Despite the tight deadline and quick turnaround, Keenan knocked it out of the park with an amazing highlight video of the past three days of the show and the video ended up being one of our most engaged posts across all platforms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Reasons It’s Good To Be A Genie

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

As August begins, I am celebrating five years at Gossip Genie. Five years, twenty-five thousand emails, and countless conference calls later, I’m taking the time to reflect on what I love about my job and why I’ve invested half a decade of my life with Gossip Genie.

In the US, the average time spent at a single company is 4.6 years. But what makes a person stay with a company and invest in their career there? As I look back on the last five years, here are a few of my reasons why:

The Challenge

At the end of the day, I couldn’t be in a job or position that didn’t challenge me. I thrive on learning new things, challenging myself and others, and getting out of my comfort zone every once in awhile. Being at Gossip Genie and working in social media, I am never bored. There’s always a new challenge on the horizon, which makes my job exciting and, ultimately, worthwhile. Without a challenge, there is no reward.

The Clients

I have been very lucky to have worked with some amazing clients over the last five years. Working with entrepreneurs, marketing professionals, and CEOs from all different kinds of industries, I’ve gained insight into worlds I’ve never imagined and had the privilege of being a part of their story, even if just for a little bit. Our clients are what drive our business and I relish the opportunity to create lasting relationships with them.

The Culture

Flexibility, work/life balance, and an energized culture are paramount to a person’s decision to stay with a company and at Gossip Genie, I ‘m lucky to have all three with a work from home policy, fun company outings, and flexibility to balance my workload and my life.

Work That Matters 

I’m not a doctor saving lives on a daily basis but I like the fact that the work I’m doing matters to my clients and their business. There’s a great deal of satisfaction knowing that you’re proud of the work you’re putting out there and that it is resonating with an audience.

The People

I am nothing without my Gossip Genie team. It’s great to work in a collaborative environment where everyone is marching towards the same goal. To my team: you motivate, inspire, and challenge me and I am lucky to not only call you colleagues but friends. And to Jacqui, our fearless leader, thank you for allowing me to be a part of the Gossip Genie journey.

A look through my past 5 years at Gossip Genie:

[tribulant_slideshow gallery_id=”1″]

 

Facebook Advertising 101: Ad Formats & Placements

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

When it comes to running Facebook ads, it’s important to choose the best type of ad for your campaign’s specific goals. In Part 2 of my series on Facebook Advertising, I’ll go into the different types of ad formats and placements available for your advertising campaign. Check out Part 1 for a recap on the different types of Facebook ad objectives.

Ad Formats

A Facebook ad format is the way your ad is presented creatively. Each ad objective has different ad formats you can choose from, and not all ad formats are available for all ad objectives.

Different Types of Ad Formats

  • Video Ads– Best used for awareness and consideration ads; videos uploaded natively to Facebook receive 30% more views!
  • Photo Ads- Ads used with photos of your product or company; always use high-res images
  • Slideshow Ads– Upload your own or use photos to create one- you can also add music and text overlay- make sure the first photo in the slideshow is the best to capture your audience’s attention
  • Carousel Ads– Format that shows a number of “cards,” each with a different image and the ability to link to a different destination
  • Canvas AdsFacebook calls canvas ads a “full-screen ad experiences built for bringing brands and products to life on mobile.” They are interactive, fully-immersive ads that eliminate the need to go off the app for information by combining photos, videos, GIFs, text, and CTA buttons, it delivers what some call a “microsite-like experience” that allows people to click, scroll, swipe, and tap to engage with brands right on the Facebook platform.
  • Dynamic Product Ads- Connected to a site’s product catalog, they automatically promote products to people who have expressed interest on your website, in your app or elsewhere on the internet. You upload your product catalog and set up your campaign once, and it continues finding the right people for the right product for as long as you want. (only available in Product Catalog Sales objective)

Ad Placements

Types: Mobile and Desktop News Feed, Right Column, Instagram, and Audience Network (third party mobile app and mobile websites

Recommendations: When running an ad, use all ad placements (unless image or copy isn’t optimized for Instagram) and monitor the performance of each ad placement

 

7 Kickass Characters To Inspire You Professionally

By | Gossip Genie Blog, Helpful Information | No Comments

Let me just start by saying this: sometimes, work drags. You feel tired or burnt out and wonder why you have no drive to take your productivity to the next level. You do everything you can to jazz yourself up: brew a fresh cup of coffee with the office Keurig, put together a to-do list on stationary that says ‘hustle,’ crank up the 90s Pandora on your computer…. yet getting out of the slump can be no joke. We’ve all been there, and that’s where this list comes in.

As a creative, one of my very favorite things is to unexpectedly find motivation in my everyday life. One of the best places to find it is in the media we consume. For example, I went on a full-blown Mad Men kick once, which inspired me to constantly think ‘big picture’ (it also led to a 60’s-inspired wardrobe of bold patterns and high neckline dresses). I also had my La La Land phase recently that opened my mind to looking at colors and angles in brand new ways (honestly, I don’t think I ever quite left either of these phases…).

With this in mind, I asked each of the Genies to share with me a fictional character (TV, movie, or book) that gave them a career boost when they needed it. Each of these characters embodies a trait that they see imperative to success and have tried to implement into their own professional lives.

Without further adieu, here are 7 boss characters that can totally snap you out of your funk.

Ali: Kimmy Schmidt // Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

“Her positivity and courage inspires me to be like that everyday in and out of the workplace. Her love for life and the little things is contagious, and I hope to bring that happiness to my co-workers.”

7 inspiring characters

Anneliese: Elle Woods // Legally Blond

“Elle demonstrates that perseverance and hard work can really get you where you want to go despite her struggles. She lets her haters be her motivators and understands that she can accomplish anything as long as she sets her mind to it and believes in herself.”

7 inspiring characters

Anthony: Atticus Finch // To Kill a Mockingbird

“I read To Kill a Mockingbird in middle school and ever since then, Atticus Finch has stood out to me as one of the most inspiring fictional characters I’ve encountered. He embodies the kindness, intelligence, and sense of empathy I always strive for on a daily basis, whether it was in the way he raised his children as a single father or how he always stood up for what he believed in in the face of adversity. And he has one of my favorite quotes of all time, which guides me on how I act in my personal and professional relationships: ‘If you just learn a single trick, Scout, you’ll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.’”

7 inspiring characters

Keenan: Jim Halpert // The Office

“Jim always found a way to stay motivated and driven. Coupled with his knack for always trying to get a laugh no matter the cost, his outlook has always helped push me to see past the bad and chase the good!”

7 inspiring characters

Kristina: Leslie Knope // Parks & Rec

“In addition to her love of waffles and fervent commitment to friendship, Leslie inspires me to never, ever give up. No matter what unexpected challenges are thrown at her, she always finds a solution by thinking out of the box. She also manages to keep a positive attitude even when others try to bring her down (looking at you, Jamm). This perseverance and passion always reminds me to keep working to my goals!”

7 inspiring characters

Shannon: Alicia Florrick // The Good Wife

“She’s smart, determined, confident and doesn’t let anything stand in her way of being a total BOSS. She’s not mean, rude, or unprofessional, but she doesn’t take shit from anyone. She’s the best, and she knows it.”

7 inspiring characters

Taryn: Tina Belcher // Bob’s Burgers

“I most admire Tina Belcher because she’s a strong, independent, young woman that knows her worth. Tina is exceedingly honest with herself and others and doesn’t change her beliefs to become more agreeable. And even though she’s strong-willed, she knows when and where to ‘drop her charm bomb.’”

7 inspiring characters

2 years as a Genie

Being a Genie Just Got 2x Sweeter

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

Time flies when you’re having fun! As cliché as it sounds, this is genuinely how I feel about my time at Gossip Genie. As of this month, I have now been here for two (yep, count ‘em!) whole years. Two offices, two job titles, two annual Cubs games, two (beautiful) Libermans, and ‘two’ many Happy Hours to remember later, I have experienced so much good during my Genie days.

Anybody who knows me well (even people who don’t know me well, honestly – I’m talking high school acquaintances and friends of friends) is well aware of the fact that I love my job. I talk about it constantly in-person and online because I’m fortunate enough to enjoy what I do day in and day out. Over the years, I’ve picked up quite a few life lessons that are going to stick with me for the long haul.

Practice What You Preach

2 years as a Genie

Social media builds your brand. Social media keeps you connected. Social media is a game-changer.

These are all things I tell my clients, and all things I truly believe. During my two years, I’ve seen what social media is capable of. For big and small goals alike, social is a roadmap to achieving them successfully.

Because I know how powerful of a tool it is, I take my personal social seriously. I started building my reputation on LinkedIn by sharing valuable content and making meaningful connections (you yourself are a brand too, you know!), and I’m dabbling with the idea of starting a blog of my own as a creative outlet. I stay up-to-date on the exciting happenings in the lives of my friends and family on Facebook and constantly check Twitter for the day’s trending news stories (pro tip: find the latest Chicago news, national news, and social media news in my Lists – @kristinaknap).

Never Stop Learning

Ahhh, I cannot express how much I have learned to roll with the punches over the past two years!

Social media is the most wonderfully and infuriatingly dynamic industry there is. Right when I really know how to work a platform’s algorithm or rock a blog post, guidelines and rules change at the drop of a hat. While this sounds exhausting, it’s also one of my very favorite parts of my job. It means I constantly have new things to learn, new puzzles to crack, and new hacks to figure out – so long boredom!

As Gossip Genie grows, so does our list of services. Since I’ve been here, we’ve added four more snazzy options to our bag of tricks: photography, videography, blogger outreach, and social media audits. I LOVE having not only the opportunity but the encouragement to be involved in this. It keeps me on my toes!

Your Coworkers Can Be Your Best Friends

2 years as a Genie

The Gossip Genie team is such a stone-cold pack of weirdos, and I could not be more proud (a Bridesmaids quote in this post was inevitable)!

No, on a very serious note, the people I have the honor of working with every day are a major, major reason that I love my job so much. We are constantly building each other up and pushing each other to reach our full potential. We never stop laughing and make time to hang out outside of the office. All of these factors make for one kickass and unique work environment! I can’t express how refreshing it is to work with people who just.. get it. They understand work-life balance and are always ready to pick you up when you’re down.

Adventure Is Out There

2 years as a Genie

New experiences are the spice of life and at GG, I always have plenty of them! Whether it’s flying off to New York to live cover an event or volunteering with Chicago Cares, GG has provided me with countless opportunities to immerse myself into a brand new adventure.

This holds true in my everyday life too. Sometimes the answer to life’s biggest challenges is just to dive in and take them head on! This past year has been a huge year for me. I got engaged to the most wonderful person in the world, moved out of my childhood home, crossed adopting a shelter dog off my bucket list, invested in a little, blue car, and am becoming a very proud aunt and godmother this month! While navigating all of these major life changes at once is pretty scary, I feel much more comfortable knowing I have such a wonderful support system – in and out of the office.

Be The Best Version of Yourself

2 years as a Genie

Potentially the most important thing I’ve learned from Gossip Genie is to never settle.

Professionally, dreams don’t work unless you do – this is something I’ve taken to heart. It reminds me to keep striving for more and to never cap the ceiling on what I can accomplish with ambition, elbow grease, and a little help from my coworkers. Personally, a motto that always sticks with me is ‘I will live my life sincerely.’ In order to live a life you’re proud of requires becoming a person you’re proud of so never stop working on you.