Annotated Bibliography

The Future of Digital Marketing & Small Business Growth Annotated Bibliography

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Video Rhetorical Analysis: Am I Alive

The music video I choose to do my rhetoric analysis over is Indian Lakes “Am I Alive.” I stumbled across this song in my Spotify discover weekly account and was immediately drawn to its lighthearted sound and quirky/spunky vibes. The more I began to listen to the lyrics in tandem with watching the music video; I began to question what kind of message this video was aiming to convey.

This music video was produced by Triple Crown Records and directed by Sigismund S. Pikul. The date of release – much to my surprise – was November 5, 2014. The genre of music that this band falls under is a bit tricky, but is always what makes them unique and enjoyable to me! They have essentially blurred that lines between indie, post-rock, and alternative. The theme of the video is precisely what I cannot put my finger on. Take a watch, and then lets chat!

 

I think many audience members would initially listen to this song, or watch this music video and believe that it is talking about a bad break-up, and how difficult it is to process and move on from moments like that in life. It can feel like you are drowning, you can feel like – as the song says – a lost cause, and need friends to come and help pull you out.

However, on the flip side, a break-up could have nothing to do with this video at all! After analyzing this a bit more, I decided that I think this video is addressing the difficulties of depression and suicide. I believe he has a girlfriend, or a wife, whom he loves and he can tell is trying to help but is probably feeling like a failure because it is beyond the bounds of anything she can fix herself. I find demon/friends rescuing him from drowning dichotomy fascinating because, in those moments of utter despair, I could understand how friends helping would feel like a nuisance.

I think analyzing colors is my favorite thing to do! I find it fascinating that the girl swinging is wearing a white dress, symbolizing perfection, wholeness, purity, and innocence. I think that subtle clothing color statement supports my argument that they are not suffering from a break-up, or are in the midst of a bad relationship, but rather she is pursuing him with pure and sincere intentions, but he is not in a good place mentally which makes their relationship taxing.

There are gray tones throughout the editing of this video which creates a mood of detachment of indecisiveness. In the introduction of the video there is a book or journal floating in the water, with several other material items swinging around, but then shortly after this beautiful shot of dirt was edited in a way that looks golden symbolizing material extravagance. Maybe the are trying to portray that the material things of this world are the very things that are drowning the essence of who we are as people?

Joey’s body language is really perplexing to me, as he is sitting with this legs together, and hands folded in his lap like a little boy sitting at a desk in school. It makes him appear timid, and unsure. I think the lyrics, storyline, and age of the lead singer is precisely what provides this music video with ethos, pathos, and logos. Pictures and videos have the power to say a thousand words.

The Future of Marketing

Oh, friends!

There is nothing that shoots me to the edge of my chair, captures my attention, or draws me in quite like asking questions about what is to come in our future, regardless of the topic. I believe it is of utmost importance to practice forward thinking in every area of our lives, but of course, today I am naturally going to drift to discussing the future of marketing since I like to consider studying marketing to be a passion project of mine. Small business owners like to do all the things (a blessing, and a curse I tell you!)

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Daniel Newman, an analyst and researcher of all things digital, wrote an intriguing article for Forbes.com titled “10 Top Trends Driving The Future Of Marketing.” Guess who was hooked? Yep, me.

The point he made the struck me the most was this,

“The power of user-generated content will surpass branded content as brands begin to relinquish control of their own brands’ marketing to their customers.”

Wait, you want brands to do what? Something about that statement causes the controlled, predictable, structural, and organized tendencies in me to do a double take. I am more than comfortable with studying a market, and then crafting a brand to meet that market’s needs, but when you ask me to “relinquish control” of my brand and allow the customer to do that kind of work I start to question things.

Do you will we will even need marketers in the next 40-50 years if we are starting to relinquish various aspects of our job? Do you think this idea of co-creation marketing will turn into customers running the show? I want to know YOUR thoughts.

Social Media: The Value of Adding Value

I like to think that most millennials get a high off of building large social media platforms, at least I know I do. Facebook was pivotal is launching my personal business, and I am now watching Instagram slowly sneak in to take its place. All of that to say, growing an engaged social media following is crucial to the growth of any business this day and age.

Jasmin Stars blog, “How to Quickly Grow Your Social Media” condensed and clarified a few very valuable tips and tricks. My favorite line?

“NO ONE WANTS TO READ YOUR STUFF…if you first don’t find a way to help or add value to their lives first.”

Relationship marketing has become essential in the business world, so it only makes sense for it to trickle down into building social media platforms. Let us take a step back for a second and talk about friendships. If you had a friend who did nothing but talk about themselves all the time (which let’s be real, some of us do), would you be inclined to stay engaged in that friendship, or would you slowly try and distance yourself?

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Building social mediums requires this same concept. It is okay to post the occasional self with a witty comment if that is your vibe, but too much of that is exhausting and uninteresting.

It order to build and maintain these followers, you have to give them value. Hence “the value of adding value” concept. Ask yourself what it is you are offering your viewer?

I  was recalling in a business communications class I took a semester ago, the professor relentlessly emphasized the YOU writing concept. Always write for your reader, always.

Sometimes these ideas and concepts seem so basic, but you would be surprised at how many people miss the mark. Do you think that there is value in adding value to your social media posts?

College Student Thoughts: Should I Work for Myself?

“So, what are your plans once your graduate?”

That is a question every college student is all too familiar with. There are so many emotions tethered within those eight little words, that it can often seem overwhelming. There is so much talk about getting a job, and working for an employer, which is great and much needed (don’t get me wrong), but what about being self-employed?

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Granted, I am utterly biased in this department being I have been self-employed since I was 12 (no joke), but gosh I would love to see students empowered to create businesses of their own if that is something they desire. The entrepreneurship path is certainly not for everyone, but it is worth looking at closely, so scoot up your chair, grab a cup of coffee, and let us chat this out. I am a firm believer that sometimes all it takes is for someone to say,

“Yes, you can do this.”

To change everything.

I think Jenna Kutcher‘s blog about the Ten Things No One Tells You About Working for Yourself, is a good place to start in analyzing if your personality type is cut out for this kind of a career. There is so much truth to what she has to say, so I copied three of my favorite points she had to make, but if you have the time, you should definitely pay her blog a little visit.

  • Life will feel like one big date from match.com. Suddenly you have no work friends, no reason to put on real pants, and you begin to question who the hell are your friends or if you even have any. Welcome to the phase of life where every interaction feels like an awkward set up from eharmony. Don’t say I didn’t warn you but I encourage you to nail down friendships before making this leap so you don’t keep talking to oranges (refer back to #1.)
  • You quit that 9-5 job so that you could work less, be with friends more, and chase those dreams, right? Well, get ready to work from 7-9… wait, that’s 14 hours, yup. Us entrepreneurs, we have an extra chromosome of hustle in us that forces us to become workaholics. The best part is that you’ll likely rather work 80 hours for yourself than 40 for someone else but now is your chance to mentally prepare.
  • You’ll want to quit (more than once.) Somewhere along the way you will question everything: the house, the job, the career change, the dreams. You will lay in a pile of tears all alone in your yoga pants and think that you can’t possibly go on. You will daydream of working at Walmart and how little responsibility you will have until you come to and remember that you are doing what you love.

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In a nutshell, working for yourself feels like a series of really awkward dates, sleepless nights, and tears, but at the end of the day, it is worth every second when you get to do what you love.

Sweet college student friends of mine, have you ever contemplated working for yourself once you graduate? Are you working on building a business now, or have a hope of starting one in the future? Or maybe entrepreneurship is not your cup of tea? Talk to me!

 

Instagram, Algorithms, and Wait What?

Happy Fri-YAY Friends!

The article I am sharing today is a smidge on the outdated side. Meaning, it was posted in March of this year (so old, I know); however, the author Jasmin Star has a lot to say in regards to how small business owners should navigate Instagram’s algorithms. The reason I am bringing this back up is that I do not feel like small businesses owners got a good handle on everything when all these changes took place, so if you are feeling a bit behind let us catch you up to speed!

If you want just to get straight to the source, here is the link to Jasmin Stars blog: http://jasminestar.com/what-the-new-instagram-algorithm-means-for-small-businesses/

Here’s the summary, however! Instagram’s algorithm is now very similar to Facebook. What that means for you, is you will know longer see posts in chronological order, but rather posts that Instagram thinks you will be interested in. Annoying? Mmm, maybe a little bit, but I like how Jasmin Star puts it,

“Sure, we can collectively groan with this massive change, but instead of wasting time being upset, let’s use this as an opportunity to think of ways we can improve the ways we use Instagram for our businesses. In fact, let’s make this a homework assignment for a hustlin’ entrepreneur.”

She gives great insight into ways we can tailor the content we post as small businesses owners to target our audience. She encourages readers to analyze their post data, and navigate what it is that your views enjoy about YOU! Then build up your content curation from there.

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Hey! Side note, you should follow me on Instagram @sarahdelanie and say hi! It’s one of my favorite social media tools!

Sounds simple, right? Haha! I know, I know. Way easier said than done, believe me, I get it.

Have you noticed a shift in your Instagram following this year? Do you think that Jasmin’s article was helpful and applicable?

The Perks of Content Marketing

Hello, friends!

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I am so excited to be blogging about a topic that I have recently developed a new passion for – content marketing! I am such a believer that this dimension within the marketing field is going to be pivotal in the future of business, and that is why I want to share some of the perks of implementing this marketing strategy in your business today.beingbe-sarahdelanie8327

This year I began shooting social media content for BeingBe and Keisha Newton, two lovely fashion bloggers located in the DFW area. It has been so fun getting my feet wet in this content photography market and has allowed me to begin thinking about changes that need to be made in my own business as a destination wedding and lifestyle photographer. I am hoping that once December rolls around, and busy season comes to a halt, that I will be able to sit down and reanalyze my marketing strategies and make changes that will be beneficial to the growth of my business.beingbe-sarahdelanie8316

College student + small business owner = no small feat

Jackie Roy, in her article “24 stats about the importance of content marketing” creates a lovely list of sources to persuade you on the perks of this practice.

James Keady, digital marketing manager for McLaren Automotive, a British automotive manufacturer, said this:

“Content is the voice of your brand, and it is, therefore, important to allocate the respect, investment, and focus it requires. Creating great content is difficult, and delivering great content consistently through established processes is complex. However, this is what is required if you want to take your brand from good to great in today’s communication environment.”

Three of my favorite points Roy makes are the following:

  • Per dollar, content marketing produces roughly three times as many leads.
  • Twenty percent of users’ time is spent surfing the Internet on content-led websites.
  • Content marketing costs less than traditional, outbound marketing. Statistics show that content marketing costs 62 percent less per lead handout bound marketing.

Personally, Facebook alone has been a huge factor in the growth of my business as a young entrepreneur, and beefing up content consistency, and follower interaction is something I hope to change very soon.

What are your thoughts on the benefits of content marketing? Do you think that we are becoming a more visually driven/captivated society? Lets chat about it! 

 

 

Advertisement Analysis: Tommy Hilfigure meets Gigi Hidad

Tommy Hilfigure launched a new campaign to push his latest perfume, The Girl fragrance. Renown model, Gigi Hadid, was selected to be Hilfigure’s global ambassador, and has been used in several advertisements published throughout this product launch. I chose to analyze the products commercial Ad for my rhetorical analysis, and of course, a little giphy never hurt nobody (you’ll see it soon, just keep scrolling)!

This advertisement has intertwined each rhetorical appeal in a unique way. Gigi Hadid is known globally for her playful, lighthearted, sex appeal. This campaign has essentially capitalized on her previously standing ethos with men and women worldwide, and tapped into the rhetorical appeal of pathos by crafting a visual commercial to tug on women’s desire for male attention and power. Just a side note before we jump into the pathos portion of this analysis, Tommy Hilfigure is a well-established brand that pulls in revenues of approximately 6.7 billion dollars per year. Therefore, the corporation has a strong ethos of its own, so the collaboration with Gigi Hadid was simply a recipe for success.

The composition of the video alone emphasizes the pathos appeal, with Gigi striking a power pose on the anchor with men looking up from down below. She is then centered in the frame as she walks the dock, having the sailor men gawk over her beauty, which apparently is completely due to the overpowering perfume scent.

What about logos? I think it is quite simple, what female does not want to smell fantastic?

When thinking about Kairos, I find this aspect of analysis to be a bit challenge. I think what makes this timely is the state our society is in. Women are always seeking for value, worth, and beauty. This ad seems to offer some direction in this pursuit of perfection. Therefore, I do not know that the ad is so much timely, as it is identifying a current trend in society, and capitalizing on that.

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This audience is all for women, women, women, and women! Why be unattractive, and unseen by men, when you can have all the male attention in the world, and look like Gigi Hadid with a simple spray of perfume?

The primary colors used throughout this ad is blue, red, and white. Let’s take a look at what each of these colors insinuates.

The color blue is seen as a cleansing color and is widely excepted by men. Ironic, right? It is associated with depth and stability and widely used in corporate America.

The color red represents power, sexuality, and passion. Red was subtly used throughout this ad, which I find interesting. If I were directing this, I would have had Gigi Hadid’s lipstick color be a much more of a vibrant red, rather than the more burgundy color they selected.

The color white is where it gets real fun. This color is associated with innocence, purity, goodness, and light. This is inevitably perpetuating the impossible diatomic standards women are encouraged to achieve. This color combination is also simultaneously tapping into a patriotic appeal.

It is the perfect blend of innocence and sensuality. Nice job Tommy Hilfigure, way to capitalize.

 

 

Mapping Words and Capturing Minds

Chapter two of “Media Writer”, by Sean Morey, spends a good chunk of time expanding on the knowledge of the rhetorical tetrahedron. Logos, pathos, ethos, (and my personal favorite) kairos are all addressed in depth.

Before we embrace these rhetorical ideas, we have first to understand exigency. I don’t know about you, but with a crazy life schedule like my own, I rely heavily on writing down notes on my phone to be sure I remember everything I need to do. I even go so far as to writing all my notes down at night before I go to bed so I can shut my brain off for a few hours. But what prompts those actions?

For me, nine times out of ten it’s stress. I do NOT want to forget something that needs to get done. Maybe it’s the type A personality type? I’m certain some of you reading this have all the feels whenever I say that!

In a nutshell, exigency is what prompts us to write. It is our purpose, our meaning. It’s the driver behind the wheel. The bee behind the sting. The joke behind the laugh.

Do you get the point now?

What’s next? We have to craft our purpose and mission behind the audience’s expectations. It is important to remember that we must always write with a “you” kind of attitude. I guess you could say writing is a great art to practice selflessness?

Now that we have a fire lite underneath our hinder-binder-booty-butts, and defined a clear map for writing with a final destination, does that mean we are done?

Not yet!

This is where our logos, pathos, ethos, and kairos come into play. Cultivating these rhetorical appeals in the midst of our writing is precisely what brings the heart-cracking goodness of words to life. It is our opportunity to spread a message, impact a life, or start a movement. Our words are more powerful than we know, and understanding how these appeals apply to our writing matters.

As a destination wedding and lifestyle photographer, takings these appeals and applying them to my craft has made all the difference. It has provided the opportunity for me to build deep relationships with my clients beyond the screen (ethos), capture imagery that appeals to a larger audience (pathos), all while learning the importance of strategies (kairos) that have been implemented in sharing content on social media.

So friends – keep creating – and remember that,

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle