Friday, February 26, 2016


I am in the midst of another social media experiment – Instagram.  I see the value of the platform for savvy marketers.  I understand the value of utilizing it as a connectivity tool with friends, if one has friends on Instagram.  To me, Instagram is a game changer.  

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To better understand the relevancy of Instagram as a leading social media platform, let me share some key stats.
·        400 million active monthly users that share 70 million photos per day. 

·        It is a global phenomenon; 70% of Instagram users come from outside the U.S. 

·        eMarketer projects that Instagram will generate $2.81 billion in ad revenue by 2017 (last year it generated approximately $600 million).

·        56% of the platform’s users have been on it 1-2 years of which 53% actively share what they are doing.  Note: 7.4% share food and beverage photos.

·        71% of their users’ access Instagram when they are free; 12% every hour! 

So why do I believe it is a game changer?  Two things: 1.) We live in a very visual society.  It is easier to share photos rather than write about an activity even if we have a social platform (Twitter) which enables us to write 140 characters; and 2.) It will eliminate the need for mailing postcards to family and friends, thus reduce the revenue generated from postage stamps.  In addition, it will negatively impact the revenue of numerous specialty magazines (e.g., travel, food, fashion, etc.).

Will I continue to utilize Instagram?  Not as frequently as the other platforms I am committed to such as Twitter and LinkedIn because I enjoy aggregating information.  But it certainly is a great way to fantasize taking a trip to a warmer part of the world, especially in the dead of winter here in Philadelphia.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Happy Birthday Abe

Last Friday was Abraham Lincoln’s birthday.  As the 16th President of the United States he led our country through one of its most difficult periods in U.S. history, the Civil War.  As a result, he preserved the Union, abolished slavery and strengthened our government.  Abe was also a major trendsetter!  

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What is with all the beards being sported by Millennial males? 
I remember listening to a speech about Millennials by Michelle Barry, President and CEO of Centric Brand Anthropology.  She indicated that beards represent a form of expression, but also exhibit pragmatism.  I decided to conduct my own research to better understand the current proliferation of Millennial male hirsuteness.  I actually found a study published by the University of Western Australia that analyzed numerous species of primates and concluded that those that live in larger multilevel societies, use beards as a badge to compete for attention.  Suzanne Boccalatte, co-editor of the book Hair, explains that throughout history facial hair trends come in waves.  The current trend potentially indicates masculinity is being “in” since beards have been associated with men that exhibited simple, traditional values (Henry David Thoreau), masculinity (Ned Kelly, Australian bushranger) and strong leadership (Karl Marx).

Abe, you were definitely a hipster, ahead of your times.  Happy Belated Birthday! 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Sense of Gravitas

Meaningful word gravitas:  grav•i•tas /’ gravɘ , täs/  (noun) a very serious quality or manner. 

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It is the beginning of February.  Are you still sticking to your 2016 New Year’s resolutions?

It has been years since I made any resolutions because candidly I always ended up breaking them.  Instead, thanks to technology issues over the holidays, I had no choice but to shut down.  I used the down time to think about those things that really matter plus what I should focus on over the next passage of time.  I renewed my sense of being (a.k.a. gravitas).

“I gravitate towards gravitas.”  Morgan Freeman (actor)