Monday, February 17, 2014

I never thought about my copious skills until they were shown to me


In January (2014) I completed an online candidate assessment.  It consisted of 3 parts each containing 17 questions and I had 45 minutes to complete the test.  The first part was made up of what I would call IQ type testing where I had to choose a missing piece of the puzzle to complete a very complex patterning sequence.  It was very challenging and I did not feel very confident about my answers.  The second two parts of the test were more about personality traits.  Ordering traits that are more or less important to you and ranking personal attributes on numerous scales.  This was also challenging in that I had to make decisions such as: Am I more likely to hurt someone's feelings or show up late for work?  Ideally, I don't want to do either of things but honestly, I'm more likely to hurt someone's feelings than be late for work so I chose my answers as honestly as possible.  It wasn't an easy assessment to complete but I got it done within the time given (I think - there was actually no clock telling me the amount of time remaining); maybe that's how they assess your time management skills, by not giving you a count-down clock but telling you numerous times that you only have 45 minutes?

So I completed the assessment and logged in the next day to see my results (click here to see).  To my surprise, they are amazing. Not only are my test scores high in terms of percentages and "rarity" in the workforce, as I read through the different attributes that apparently described me, I was shocked how accurate the descriptions were. The "bell curve" images for each attribute also appeal highly to my sociological mind!

I am most pleased with my task management score (95.5%) and problem solving score (78.9%) as the test says that based on averages, 50% of the workforce will not achieve a score higher than 50 on problem solving and I'm almost 30 points higher than this!  I guess I didn't do so poorly on those patterning sequencing after all.

Another high point in the test results is my conscientiousness score of 94.5% - placing me in the top 6% of the workforce.  That descriptions says I am exceptionally likely to excel in being organized, industrious, diligent and hardworking. Compared to most people, managing time, staying motivated and exercising self-discipline are likely to come extremely easily for me.  Individuals with similar scores have reported they greatly enjoy and shown an exceptional ability to execute complex tasks, to adhere to deadlines, and to follow procedures, such as sales processes, reporting, admin work, and safety procedures. I am extremely likely to have exceptional attention to detail, extraordinary aptitude for following up on tasks and processes that take place over long periods, and being unusually careful in thinking before acting. I am very likely to set much higher standards than most people and to have an exceptional ability to attain those standards. -  While I know this to be true about myself on the small scale, to hear so many great attributes applied to myself makes me feel like a worthy employee and that I am an asset to the organization where I work.

At first I was disappointed by my low "Agreeable" score; only a 16.6%?!?! But when I read the description, for someone who wants to be in a manageable position like myself, it's a good score as it says: Being assertive isn't difficult for me. I am a reasonably critical person. It is unlikely that I'll be taken advantage of, and compared to most people I don't struggle with making decisions. If forced to choose between protecting peoples feelings and getting something done right, I'll choose the latter almost every time. - Wow, this is true and, like I said, just the attributes a leader needs to have.

I have saved the images and descriptions from this assessment b/c I have no idea how long cream.hr is going to keep my profile live on their website. I have create a page on my own website to display my results.

After seeing all my skills and attributes in this new way I am convinced that I can be a grand asset to any organization who allows me to achieve my potential.

Monday, December 30, 2013

2013; year end

The final, or almost, day of 2013... Happy to be posting something before another year passes since my last post. So where are things at at the end of 2013?  I'm still most commonly found on Facebook.  Although I've come to enjoy seeing people's photos on Instagram even though it's by far full of photos of my 'friends' children and their doings. I see the appeal of Instagram, thanks to our (not so new anymore) social media gal at work. That's right, I'm still working the corporate sales and we hired someone else to take over the SM. 'Twas sad to let it go but I couldn't do it all so I've off-loaded the 'fun' SM campaigns and tracking (and contests!!!) to the 'new' gal, who is awesome btw. Anyway we're using Instagram at work and it's enjoyable to see customers post photos of their gifts.

Twitter remains in the background for me. I still re-tweet some interesting tweets from time to time and follow an array of famous-for-five-minutes reality TV "stars."  Linked-in gets my attention a few times a week. It seems it's becoming more popular for job postings, which seems like a great use for this platform. I hope to see more of that. We hired our awesome SM gal through Linked-in and the job posting fee (about 6 months ago) was less than $300. If they can keep the fee reasonable like this it could really take off as the place professionals go to job search IMO. I've filled in my profile to the max and even I'm impressed by my profile. This seems like a great unique use for this platform. Remember when Facebook used to have a marketplace where you could post things you wanted to sell?  Does that still exist? That never really took off, I'd say. Linked-in has real potential if it can keep up and focus on it's unique strengths.

For 2014, besides goals I won't publish on my public blog, I'm hoping to take up a new hobby.... Collaging!  Spell check isn't a fan of that spelling so maybe that's not a word.  That is to say, making collages from magazine clippings in unique ways to depict other types of images. It's something that has interested me since university days. On my dorm room door in Hilliard I had a collage of words and images that I thought described me at the time. In fact, I have a big envelope, from those days, full of magazine clippings I can't wait to dive into again after allllll these years.  I have been using Pinterest for inspiration. Collaging will hopefully be my new 2014 hobby!  I'll let y'all know how that goes. Signing off, 2013, over and out.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

A year gone by! A social media (in my life) update.

Wowzers!  I stumbled upon my own blog today and imagine my surprise when I see that it was a year ago since I set up the account and a year ago since I posted anything.  For shame!!!  My intention was to have "interesting" things to say at least every month or so.  So far that certainly hasn't happened.  Will it change going forward?  I won't promise anything.  I do love writing and now that the PhD degree is on hiatus perhaps more blogging can be a writing venue for me.  Again, I won't promise anything.

So where are things at with Social Media in my life?  Not much has changed.  Facebook is still my main social network.  I sometimes read updates on Twitter (such as t.v. show spoilers) and sometimes retweet an interesting post.  Rarely (if ever) go on Pinterest.  No good reason... it serves an interesting purpose but I don't take time to creep it.  I do enjoy creeping Linkedin on a bi-weekly (or so) basis.  I wish more people were on there and I had more connections.  The new feature of "endorsing" people's skills is nifty... you can quickly click "endorse" on a specific skills on your connection's profiles.  Linkedin keeps a running tally of those endorsements.  That seems like a quick way to interact with people and takes much less time then writing an actual endorsement for the person. 

Have not spent any time on Google+, nor Instagram (has anyone???).  I do enjoy the new photo filters that Facebook has introduced in the past few months (did this come from Facebook's purchase of Instagram?  Probably).  Besides the filters I have little use for Instagram.  As said, Facebook still reigns supreme in my life.

A friend/acquantance recently suggested to me that his daughter (who is approx 11 years old) ONLY communicates on Twitter with her friends.  He says this is b/c her parents aren't on Twitter (and they are on Facebook); so she's avoiding her parentals creeping her on Facebook.  And mainly the reason for her being on Twitter is b/c that's where her friends are.  It's an interesting thing to think about... is Facebook not appealing to the younger generation?  Is Facebook now going to only appeal to people in my generation and the yougins are to be found on Twitter.  This could have great impact for social media marketing.  Anyway, I have not looked into the stats but anecdotally it's interesting to note that Twitter is still alive and well, at least in my friend's daughter's peer group.

Work and social media - I've been *so* busy with corporate sales in the past several months that my social media expertise is falling behind.  Hopefully I can get the corporate sales responsibilities lifted back onto another employee so I can get back to the fun social media marketing activities.  I did sign up and take a quick "look around" HootSuite last week.  Totally unimpressed.  What's the big deal?  Unless you are managing several *very active* social media accounts I really don't see the big whoop about it.  And creating reports (that would hopefully be meaningful), takes more than the 4 minutes I put into testing it.  Although, before I write it off, I should spend some more time with the app. 

Okay, I'm signing off.  Hopefully I'll write something up again on here before another year goes by.
Stay social ya'll.  Cheers!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Why is KD's "Battle Zone" Facebook Contest Failing?

Have you seen this?  Am I missing something or is this Facebook contest an "epic fail"?KD's Battle As social media marketers, what can we learn about this "epic fail"?



So KD is running a Facebook contest called "Battle Zone."  ( http://www.facebook.com/kraftdinner ) The basic premise:  There are 5 battles. People submit an entry and people vote on the entries.  The entry with the most votes at the end of the battle is the "winner."


Here is what's WINNING about this contest idea IMO:

1.  Concept: The concept is fun and *should* appeal to a younger and older crowd.  It asks customers to interact with their brand in unique ways and entering the contest is easy.
2.  Facebook Design: It's very well designed.  The graphics are high-quality and appealing.  They have their own Facebook "app" and it's completely branded.  All round, it's very solid.
3.  YouTube: The "Battle Zone" YouTube videos are funny and snappy.  They represent and explain the contest well.  The "two guys" are on point throughout. Again, high quality. See their YouTube channel.
4.  Battles:  The battles themselves are relevent and pick up on popular viral campaigns.  For example, "KD bombing" (photo bombing) and a caption contest. This *should* appeal a wide range of Facebook users.
5.  TV:  They have TV commercials to support their contest; yes, you heard me correct.  TV commercials; that can't be cheap. While watching TV (in Canada anyway) you will likely see commercials that promote the contest with the two same guys as the YouTube vids. The commercials are short, funny, and snappy and tell you to "join the battle" on their Facebook page.



So with all these great things going on... why is this campaign FAILING?


There is one reason why I consider this contest an "epic fail" (as the yougins say these days). And that reason is: shockingly low participation rates!  Let's look more closely at this.
Battle 1 - "KD Bombing" - The "winning" photo bomb had 258 votes (258!!!).  The top three entries had a total of 619 votes between them (total!).  (Okay, it's the first battle, things will improve, right?)
Battle 2 - "Get Gify With It" - The "winning" GIF 133 votes (less than battle 1, what??!!?).  The top three entries had a total of 355 votes between them (oh man, half as many as battle #1, things are getting worse).  Maybe people don't remember what animated GIFs are?
Battle 3 - "Caption Clash" -   The "winning" caption had... wait for it.... 81 votes (yes, for real).  (185 total votes between the top three entries).  What is happeing here?
Battle 4 - "Make it Epic" - This is the current battle (at the time of writing this) and the first place leader entry has 142 votes thus far.  I've been "watching" this contest for a couple of weeks now so it is likely that this battle will end shortly; with little hope of much more success.
Battle 5 "FreeStyle" - Post ANYTHING related to KD... a poem, a picture, a commercial. This is kind of a cop-out?  Is this because they realize their campaign has failed?  As of posting this there were three entries and the entry in first place had 29 votes. Let's see how many entries and votes this one gets.....

This makes no sense...

Why are the low participation rates SHOCKINGLY LOW?  The KD page has 257,998 "likes" (fans) (at time of writing this).  You would think with an audience *this huge* this campaign would be doing better.  You would think that if you had a facebook contest that was being supported through commercials on television (which has an audience of MILLIONS), it would be doing better.


What was their campaign goal?

Sure, we do not know KD's campaign goal.  Was it to increase Facebook likes?  Was it to introduce two new "faces" of their brand?  Was it to test a new facebook app?  While, we do not know their specific goal, we can certainly assume that when they pump *this much* money into a campaign (2 actors, videographers, video editors, app developers, marketing folk, tv commercial production costs, etc.etc.etc.etc.) they very likely expected it to be more successful (in terms of 'fan' participation and virility).

"Bragging Rights"...?

I searched high and low to find out what the prizes were for "winning" in the Battle Zone.  I couldn't find the answer, so I asked....
facebook post
Lame! Well, maybe we have our answer here.  I think one reason this campaign is failing is because there are NO PRIZES.  What kind of contest has no prize?  Perhaps participation rates are so low because there is no incentive (besides 'for the fun of it') to participate?  I mean, you're KD, you've just pumped thousands of dollars into this campaign, why not at least have a "year's supply of KD" (and give each winner 365 boxes of KD)? That would cost the company pretty much nothing compared to what they've already spent.  Again, why have a contest with no prize?


As social media marketers, what can we learn from this "epic fail"?

How about, offer prizes when you run a contest (this seems like a no-brainer to most of us social media marketing people).  I just can't believe such a social media failure from such a large brand.  Who is their social media marketing manager?  I need to get in there and replace that person because something is wrong here....

Are there other lessons to be learned here?  Does anyone have any other ideas why this campaign is failing?  I'd LOVE to hear your ideas and discuss this more... Please COMMENT.