Posts Tagged ‘Social Media’

The Evolution of Social Media In HIS Name HR LLC

The Evolution of Social Media

The Evolution of Social Media

It’s an average day for Average Joe. He wakes up, powers up his iPhone and checks his Facebook account. After scrolling through some posts, he updates his status. “Just getting ready for class,” he writes. “Hope the day rolls by fast!” He then checks his Instagram, commenting on his brother’s photo collage and his girlfriend’s latest cat photos. After scarfing down a bagel, he posts a picture of his own. “No gourmet meal here,” he captions the picture before heading out to class.

In English class, Joe’s professor discusses the upcoming Academy Awards show. The professor assigns the class to pick a movie that is up for an award, watch it and then write a review. Joe goes home and takes to Twitter, trying to find out which movie has gotten the most acclaim. He at last settles on a flick. After watching the movie, he updates his Facebook status again. “Better than I thought it would be,” he writes. “Hope it nabs an award.”

It’s dinner time, and Joe’s girlfriend is coming over. He’s not much of a cook, so he jumps on Pinterest to see what’s cooking. After searching up a few meals, he settles on a tasty looking Greek dish. He hopes to impress his girlfriend, who doesn’t know he has a Pinterest account. After dinner, Joe finishes his homework and hops on LinkedIn before heading to bed. He’s not very active on the site, but his professor says it’s a great way to find a job, so he’s been poking around. He updates his resume, checks out some profiles and reads a couple blogs. Before shutting down his phone, he checks his Instagram once more. He is pleased to see his Greek dish of homemade hummus and falafel has made it to his girlfriend’s account; the photo already has 62 likes. Joe drifts happily off to sleep.

Does Average Joe sound a bit like you?

Just two decades ago, students wrote notes and stuffed them into locker doors at school. When news broke, they picked up the old family phone and made a call. Families connected with relatives through the mail, penning letters on fancy stationery. When folks looked for a job, they scoured the local newspaper, delivered an application in person and waited anxiously by the telephone for good news. And when friends and family wanted to share photos, they took their 35 mm film to the drug store, printed them and popped them in the mail. But times have changed since then — just a bit!

These days, it seems almost impossible to imagine a world without social media. Whether it be Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest or LinkedIn, most high school and college students have been influenced by these tools in some way or another. Social media, without a doubt, has become a powerful part of our lives. With just a few clicks of a phone or computer mouse, we can send photos, post updates and share major events with those we love. Social media, and the wide world of technology, have changed our lives for good. Like it or not, there is no going back.

Wikipedia defines the classification of social media as many different forms: magazines, Internet forums, weblogs, social blogs, microblogging, wikis, social networks, podcasts, photographs or pictures, video, ranting and social bookmarking. Technologies include blogging, picture sharing, vlogs, wall posting, music sharing, crowd sourcing and voice over IP, just to name a few. New applications, websites and software are constantly evolving and showing up on the scene. The world faces an ever-dynamic system of new startups, upgrades, changes and enhancements, making programs more sophisticated than ever. Just as Apple continues to upgrade and redefine the iPhone every couple years, social media sites constantly seek improvement too. It is an ever-evolving world, and it can be hard to keep up. With technology advancing by the day, things will only move forward, not back.

Today, over half the world now uses some form of social media, with 60 percent of people on various sites. 4.80 billion people around the world use various platforms, with 150 million new users coming online within the past year. The average person, like Average Joe, spends nearly 2.5 hours on social media per day.

So just how did social media begin? And who had dibs on it first?

You’ve probably never heard of it, but in March 2002, a site called Friendstr was launched by a Canadian computer programmer named Jonathan Abrams. It grew to several hundred users within a few weeks and then to over 3 million users by early 2003, becoming the world’s first social media platform that engaged the mainstream. LinkedIn came along a year later, officially making its debut in May of 2003. While this went on to become a great networking tool for professionals, it was a little site called MySpace that really paved the way for social connection online. Launched by a guy named Tom Anderson (yes, that guy in the iconic white T-shirt, who became your first MySpace “friend”!) in August 2003, MySpace revolutionized the online community, particularly in the music sector. People could search for long-lost friends and lovers and reconnect. Initially, it spread like wildfire. In July 2005, MySpace was acquired by News Corporation for $580 million, and in June 2006, it surpassed Yahoo and Google to become the most visited website in the United States. At its peak in April 2008, Myspace and Facebook reached 115 million monthly visitors, but Myspace could not keep up with its newly emerged competitor. Launched by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook soon bumped MySpace out of its number one spot.

From there, the social media revolution continued. Reddit came next, followed by YouTube. Twitter was launched by Jack Dorsey in March 2006, followed by Pinterest in 2010. Instagram made its debut that same year. Today, the younger generation prefers Instagram to Facebook when it comes to sharing photos and news. As one teen so kindly informed her mother: “Mom, Facebook is now for old folks.” But with nearly 3 billion people around the world still using the site, it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.

Like Average Joe, your life has likely been impacted by social media in some way. Beyond sharing cat photos, cooking ideas and vacation highlights, it can also be a great way to network and launch your career. To learn more about the evolution of social media, order your copy of College to Career today!

For more on your voice, check out College to Career today!


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Is Facebook Really Risky in the Workplace?

Is Facebook Really Risky in the Workplace?

Learn how to make social media use in the workplace a win for everybody.

What is your organization’s policy on social media? It’s time to better understand this powerful tool and make it work for you.

Research from Fierce, a Seattle-based training and development company, concludes that 80 percent of workers log onto Facebook during working hours.

Facebook is not going away. LinkedIn is right behind, and if you don’t know what Instagram or Snapchat is, well, you’re just missing out. Having worked in an era before these tools existed and then became popular, I offer you some vital insights from a Human Resources perspective.

Transforming connections and communications

In an age of smartphones, websites, and computers with preloaded social media integration, social media technology is standard fare in most environments. Customers routinely “check in” and post photos from restaurants, shops, attractions, and events. Pastors tell attendees to tweet quotes from their sermons. Celebrities make big announcements on Twitter, and the most important world news breaks on social media first. It’s not going anywhere. In fact, it’s growing, integrating, and upgrading faster than ever.

Despite this prominence, only 51 percent of organizations have any policy on social media. Some organizational leaders feel participation hurts productivity or even contributes to interpersonal problems (think of publicly bad-mouthing leadership), yet many more believe its use is crucial to good morale and a happy working environment, and current research bears this out.

Today, a whole new generation of workers considers social media a nonnegotiable aspect of their job environment. In a recent study by Fast Company, 40 percent of college students and 45 percent of young professionals said they would turn down a job or accept less pay rather than work for a company that disallowed social media use.

Be clever in how you integrate social media usage into your  organizational culture and policies. If you have bans on social media, review and amend them to fit the times. If you don’t have a policy yet, remember these key points before issuing sweeping prohibitions on the technology:

  • When treated as adults, most employees behave as adults.
  • Give great guidelines up front—don’t wait for a crisis. Regularly encourage responsible posting on social media.
  • Assign someone who understands social media to create a vision of how your company can be positively perceived or promoted online, and then articulate that vision clearly.

Risk vs. Reward

Without guidance, employee involvement with social media can be risky, but social media remains an excellent tool to engage participants and current or future customers and get your message out. The right use of this powerful tool can benefit everyone involved.

Many opportunities exist to mobilize your workforce to connect with others and broadcast a healthy and positive image of your company or non-profit. Some of the most productive and profitable companies have integrated it well, and so can you.

What type of policies do you have in place on social media?


Mark Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience.  Follow Mark on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

How We Became Number One On Google In HIS Name HR

How We Became Number One on Google

Social Media and Search Engine Optimization

This blog post is out of the ordinary. We are human resource experts not marketing or social media experts by any means. We have been asked way too many times and have had to explain in painstaking detail the same question:

How did In HIS Name HR climb to the top slot in Google’s search response to the query for “Christian Human Resources”

Having been peppered with this question from a wide array of sources, we decided to answer it here, and share our methodology.

Social media can be confusing to many people, but in reality it is very simple. Social media programs are nothing more than tools that allow like-minded people to communicate. What is critical to remember is that not all people use all programs. Therefore, to reach a large and diverse group of people, you need to reach them where they are, instead of hoping they’ll somehow stumble across you.

Many people make the mistake of only using Facebook, or Twitter, when they attempt to market their voice to the world. But what about all those people who use other social media programs instead, those who are not on Facebook or Twitter? If you rely only on those two platforms, you are essentially missing out on millions of potential people who won’t hear your message.

What you want to do is essentially send your same message out through all the various social media programs. However, you will need to tailor the way in which your message is sent out to accommodate the differing requirements or constraints of each social media platform.

To start, make sure what you present fits your voice—that is, how you want people to perceive you and your services. It is a combination of your mission, vision and values. Your voice can also be defined as a “niche” that you are working to create for your organization.

In just 6 short years we have been able to develop a strong social media audience.

We now have:

Over 15,000 followers on Twitter

Facebook Business Page now exceeds 3,100

Over 7,700 connections on LinkedIn

And our latest social media platform Instagram, now exceeds 4,100 plus followers