Happy Birthday #Ingenex7!

Yesterday, Ingenex Digital Marketing celebrated seven years of successful hard work by throwing a birthday bash. This special moment couldn’t have been celebrated in without the family and friends that are so supportive and motivational for us to continue to do our job.

Ingenex's Friends

The band Corndaddy brought the great sound of country rock to the party. Inspired by Willie Nelson, Buck Owens, the Byrds and other classic groups, the refreshing music chilled out our guests from the hot weather.

Corndaddy

The parents brought their babies and children making the event very family oriented. Parents didn’t have to worry about their children as they took over the conference room and watched Disney movies and ate delicious food from Katherine’s Catering services. With great drinks we were able to toast with the Ingenex family in the new office.

Watching the Incredbiles

This celebration is shows that entrepreneurship and dedication goes a long way with the dedication of a team that roll up the sleeves every single day to meet the needs of their clients. With this spirit and mentality, I am certain we’ll see many more celebrations in the future!

Managing your Social Media Footprint in the Digital Age

In an ever competitive job market, your online presence is becoming an important part of the interviewing process. Employers aren’t necessarily trying to “dig up dirt” on you as much as they are trying to make sure you’re the right fit for the company. Dan Schawbel, author of “Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success,” told MSN News, “Over 90 percent of recruiters use social networks to review candidates’ backgrounds.”  It goes to show just how important your online reputation is. Follow these easy steps to make sure you’re marketing yourself correctly:

Photo by: Search Engine People Blog

Photo by: Search Engine People Blog

Google Yourself
Start out looking at what employers would see if they searched you. Google, Bing, Facebook, etc. search your name. It will give you a good feel for what kind of digital footprint you’re leaving behind, whether it be positive or negative. If you can’t find you, then chances are recruiters are going to have a tough time too. However, that’s not necessarily a good thing; you want to be found in search results, for positive reasons of course. Searching yourself will give you a look at how much work you have ahead of you to clean up your image and make yourself more searchable for all the right reasons.

Clean It Up
Delete inactive social media profiles. There’s probably no reason to keep that Myspace from middle school, completely stocked full with embarrassing pictures. Once you determine what profiles you want to keep, and you realize they aren’t as professional as you’d like them to be, you might have your hands full. One useful (and free) tool students can use is SimpleWash. This application looks through your Facebook and Twitter and shows you everything from photos, to things you’ve liked or tweeted that have questionable content. You can also search specific words for the app to scan through. After it finds everything, you can sift through and delete things you don’t want employers to see.

Facebook Privacy Settings
They may be a pain, but they are important to keep up-to-date on so what you don’t want people to see, stays private. Facebook’s Privacy Settings are often changing, so you need to keep up with it. There are a lot of handy features to manage your profile. One of my favorites, Timeline Review, allows you to approve or hide tagged photos or posts before they are seen on your timeline. Gone are the days where you have to worry about quickly untagging yourself from an unprofessional (or just flat out unattractive) photo your friend posted from a night out. If there is anything questionable, you have have the ability to decide what can be seen.

Twitter
There are a lot of ways you can use Twitter, however some of them are better than others when it comes to getting a job. It might seem funny to tweet from the bar, but it won’t seem that funny when you can’t find a job after graduation. If you lack the self-control that so many college kids do, consider protecting your tweets. People will request to follow you, giving you the control over who sees your tweets. If you have your tweets public, remember who your audience is. Have an objective and make sure your tweeting relevant information.

Be Smart and Think Before You Post
Once it’s on the internet, it’s out there for good. Don’t post something if you are unsure of how it may be received by the public. Try to stay away from anything controversial. You don’t know the beliefs and values of recruiters who may be looking at your profile, so don’t say anything that could potentially offend them. Refrain from posting about politics, religion or anything illegal. “Posting while emotional” is another trap some fall into. We all say things we regret when angry or upset, but don’t share it with your entire online community.

Manage Your Friends and Followers
We’ve all heard it before, but don’t accept friend or follower requests from people you don’t know. Know who you are connected to and what you’re sharing with them. You can classify your friends into groups and share content that is specifically for them. As you get older, you might want to go through and manage your friends and followers to make sure they’re still relevant connections.

It’s important to keep yourself professional, but that doesn’t mean you need to sound like a robot in the process. Be yourself! Employers want to see your personality and the positive accomplishments you’ve had. Sprucing up your social media profiles may seem like a daunting task, and it may take you a few days to look through all those pictures from your college years, but it will be well worth it when your profiles are recruiter ready.

The Digital Bus: A unique experience

My three month internship at Ingenex Digital Marketing is flying by! Right now, I am approaching the end of my second month, and the company has recently launched its Digital Bus Summer Tour of 2013.

Ingenex Team

Ingenex Team

The goal of the Digital Bus is to promote our services and brand awareness via digital social outreach as we engage in activities and events on our summer schedule. During the summer tour we hope to connect with  people through the use of hashtags in order to create conversation and establish new relationships.

The Digital Bus visits awesome places beyond Michigan’s borders. Our 1972 Volkswagen Westfalia Camper also travels to Illinois and New York. We encourage people that see us on the road or in person to take a photo and tweet us using the hashtag #DigitalBus so we can interact with them!

For each summer tour, our team wears personalized t-shirts to help us brand and promote the bus as well as our company. This experience allows us to combine the digital experience with the real world and connect with our community.

Joao and Erin at Nickel's Arcade

Joao and Erin at Nickel’s Arcade

I’ll try not to be biased, but the 1972 Volkswagen we have is extremely cool! The Digital Bus provides a charming and exclusive identity to our company. Promoting the digital services we provide via our vintage van is very ironic, but in my opinion that’s why Ingenex is such a unique agency to work for. Though we are digitally immersed in our daily work, all team members are extremely social, outgoing and this opportunity allows us to combine our skills and personalities.

This is also an opportunity for us as a team to get to know each other better in different environments. The Digital Bus is an experience that not many agencies can provide, and I am very happy for the opportunity to be part of this experience.

Learning from Dove’s Viral Marketing Campaign

A few months ago, Dove launched a hugely successful campaign called “Real Beauty”. The first installment of their viral video series was called “Sketches” which featured women describing their appearances to a police sketch artist. The sketches turned out to be much less attractive than how other people described them to be.

dove

Source: YouTube screenshot

This instantly struck a chord with viewers and the viral video spread fast with more than 114 million views on the Dove YouTube channel. Even with the popularity of the video, responses were mixed. Some found the ads to be empowering, while others claimed that they were playing into beauty stereotypes. However, comments about the video on Dove’s Facebook page suggested that most found the video to be feel-good and inspirational.

Dove’s campaign can be a teaching lesson for digital marketing firms. Companies looking to release some viral marketing genius need to be in touch with who they are trying to sell to. Just as Dove has tried to stay in touch with the attitudes and frustrations that women have the beauty industry in general, companies need to become savvier with the interests of their customers to a more personal level. People are more willing to support companies that go above and beyond simply the money-making motivations, but also make the effort to recognize the problems that their customers have.

Recently Dove released a new video to add to its campaign. “Camera Shy” is a cheery, playful video, but also brings in a more serious question, asking viewers, “When did you stop thinking you were beautiful?” Do you this video have what it takes to achieve the same success as its predecessor?

Independence From Smartphones

As an electronics laggard, I just bought my first smartphone a little over three months ago. The world has become so much more accessible since becoming a part of the iPhone family. I know the weather, find out how my friends are doing, go shopping, text, and more all before getting out of bed in the morning. However, over the Fourth of July holiday, I went “Up North” to Hale, Mich. for five days. While you are suppose to enjoy nature and get away from society for a few days when on vacation, I found myself constantly checking up with everything I left behind because Grandma and Grandpa Conrad decided to get WiFi. For the first time since getting my smartphone, I wished that I left it at home.

Photo Credit: Mike Licht Via: Flickr Creative Commons

Is my smartphone taking over my life? It has been reported that smartphone owners check their devices over 150 times during the average 16 hours people are awake during the day. This constant need to check on what everyone else is doing, posting and saying distracted me from enjoying the beautiful lake house I was staying in. Apparently, 84% of people worldwide say they cannot go a single day without their phones and sadly I have become part of this statistic.

My questions is, why couldn’t I put my phone down or turn it off? According to Judson Brewer of Yale’s Therapeutic Neuroscience Clinic, people are addicted to their phones for the same reason many are addicted to gambling. Cellular Devices comply with the associative learning pathway of human brains, and this makes us feel good or bad depending on the situation. When gambling, people do not know when they are going to win and this makes winning even more fun when it happens. When using smartphones, we don’t know when we are going to get a notification or what it is going to say. This triggers excitement within us, causing addiction to our devices.

I love having a smartphone because it connects me with the rest of society. Entertainment and information combined make having a smartphone so convenient and enjoyable. However, the addiction we have with our smartphones need to be controlled. Next year, I plan on leaving my phone at home while I enjoy what the physical world has to offer.

News flash for your smartphone!

More and more photos are being taken every day since the majority of smartphones have become our digital cameras. Many cameras have great pixel qualities; you can edit it and with Instagram even add effects to make your photo unique. However, there is still one problem with dark photos – the lack of a good flash. The evening is one of the times people socialize and interact the most and if you there isn’t good lighting around, your photos won’t turn out great.

Well, the problem might be over. The iblazr mobile phone flash is developing a product to be compatible with iOS and Android devices that gives the ability to take higher quality pictures at night. Another great aspect of this product is that it works effectively for both photos and videos.

As soon as people start using this product, we should be seeing a lot more pictures and videos in social networks taken in the evening. This new feature comes at a great time for Vine, as well as Instagram, who has launched video sharing capabilities.

by iblazr

by iblazr

People will be able to take more pictures during music concerts, inside a movie theater, and during special occasions like evening fireworks during the fourth of July and New Years.

This external accessory is connected in the audio jack of your smartphone and it also has its own battery so it won’t consume your smartphone’s power. The iblzar flash is only 10mm thick. It would be perfect for digital marketing agencies especially those that might be on a budget and are still looking to give their employees the ability to take quality photos and videos with their smartphone.

There is no official date set for the release of this product or of the price of this product, but this is something people can look forward to. Do you think you would use this new accessory? If so, share your thoughts below!

 

Do you know how to write for social media?

Today, I want to talk about copywriting! In college, students are exposed to many different courses to enroll in. As an intern at Ingenex Digital Marketing, I have the opportunity to put in practice my skills and knowledge from college but it is also opening up my eyes about other courses I should have taken before graduating.

Like the majority of the students, everyone had to take a writing class, but in the field of advertising it is very important to have sharp copywriting skills. I learned copywriting through my past and current work experience, but if you have a chance to take courses beforehand, do it! By taking a copywriting course these skills are transferable to many other jobs and in the field of advertising it will make you look professional.

by MDGovpics

by MDGovpics

Sending tweets and posting tons of statuses on Facebook does not make you a social media expert. There are many guidelines to follow when writing for social media. In copywriting for social media, the voice, language and tone varies from one platform to another, from brand to brand and other aspects in between.

In the advertising and digital marketing industry, creativity is the soul of successful campaigns. Copywriters need to be flexible, creative and quick in their feet, especially in the field of social media, as there are constant changes and rapid communication in the online communities.

“Copywriting for social media is an interesting and deep topic because there are so many different channels, mechanisms and purposes. It’s almost like you have to learn a separate business … there’s the ad business … there’s PR … there’s social. Each slightly different.” said social media expert, Jason Falls.

With so many mediums like Twitter, Facebook, the ultimate goal is for your audience to click and respond your online message. Communication on social media outlet is a two-way channel if not more, this one of the reasons it is crucial to be human when crafting your message.

To be a well rounded copywriter, I encourage you to learn about the techniques and practices of copywriting for SEO and learn about the importance and value of keywords as they will play a major role in allowing your website to show up on search results.

I also recommend the New Media Drivers Licence course. This course gave me a competitive advantage when applying for jobs and internships. Best of luck and if you have any questions, feel free to contact me!

WordPress Job Available At Ingenex

Ingenex Digital Marketing is looking to hire a WordPress Developer! Ingenex is a result driven digital marketing agency that has clients across the United States and Canada. Derek Mehraban, Ingenex CEO and your potential boss, is looking for an employee who is creative and understands web design thoroughly. “I want my clients to get the latest and greatest of everything,” Mehraban stated. This means you have to be able to create the latest designs and implement them into a WordPress CMS.

photo2

Not only must you be a WordPress professional, but Mehraban is looking for an employee who has quality personal traits. “We are looking to hire someone who is hardworking, pays attention to detail, accurate, fun to be around and always delivers above and beyond,” Mehraban says.

“I want a coworker who is driven, passionate about work and dedicated to staying current on new digital trends,” Content Manager Ashlie Forchione said. In the world of digital marketing, trends are always changing so it is important to evolve with technology. Clients need to be provided with the latest and greatest forms of technology, and that improves what you can provide as a WordPress Developer.

Is Ingenex the right company for you? When asked about working at Ingenex  Social Media Coordinator Lauren Schneider said, “My favorite part about working at Ingenex is having the ability and opportunity to have your voice count. You aren’t just part of a mix, you will have your area of expertise and your work will be noticed.”

The Ann Arbor branch of Ingenex is located on Main Street, and will soon be moving to a new location in Downtown Ann Arbor within the month. “At the Ann Arbor location, we can appreciate what the city has to offer to the agency with the fun environment. It has always been my dream to work in Downtown Ann Arbor” Content Producer Erin O’Neill said.

Nervous about the potential interview? Here are some wise words of advice from current Ingenex employees:

“Don’t forget to smile!” — Forchione

“Be yourself and don’t be afraid!” — Schneider

“Be prepared to talk about your work. Come in with example pieces.” — O’Neill

To find more information about the position please visit:

Are you safe online?

Millions of Americans go online everyday and don’t realized how vulnerable their information can be due to the lack of security of some websites, an increasing number of phishing scams and the lack of control from their private settings.

Last year 12 millions Americans fell victim to the fraud and had their identities stolen. Today we are going to give a few quick tips on how to protect yourself from these cyber crimes. Social Media became one of the favorites “playground” for thieves and malicious virus to steal your personal information.

by FutUndBeidl

by FutUndBeidl

1. Passwords: When is the last time you changed your password? This is a very basic but important step to take but it is important change your password from time to time. Some websites allow you to see if the password you are entering is harder to crack, by stating if it is “strong” or “very strong”. Don’t make them simple like your pet’s name or “123”, but if the website allows you to include numbers, capital letter and symbols, do it! Make sure your password is “strong”, “very strong”; “very good” or “excellent”. Cyber thieves can easily identify your password if you ever made it public. On this note make sure the privacy settings on your social networks are well secure.

2. Emails: NEVER email your credit card number or Social Security number to anyone. Malicious hackers are always looking for this crucial information once they get into your account. Be very careful opening attachments and downloading files, even if you know the source.

3. Online banking: The same way you check your e-mail on a daily basis, you should monitor the activity of your debt and credit cards for any suspicious transactions. If you feel, that your account was compromised and you had your information stolen, contact your bank immediately. It is also recommended that online, you should use credit cards instead of debit cards, since debit cards do not have as a strong protection against fraud compared to credit. You also should contact your bank and ask if they have free software to protect your online banking.

4. Wireless connections: If you have a wireless router at home, make sure to make it secure by including a password, this way a third party won’t be able to access your signal connection. Some people also enable the encryption to scramble the information you send back and forth online.

To learn more about other steps you can take in case your information is stolen, click here. It is very important to share this information with your friends and family members as some of them might have your personal information stored in their computers as well. Keep an eye out and stay safe!

 

Avoid a LinkedIn Job Scam

As a college senior, I am always and actively looking for job opportunities. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are all sources someone on the job hunt can take advantage of during their search. LinkedIn is designed for career oriented individuals who want to network with others. Users can add people, endorse one another, look at profiles, and even apply for jobs using LinkedIn.

While all of this is fine and dandy there are some things LinkedIn users have to watch out for when applying for jobs, like scams. The basic form of LinkedIn is a free tool that anyone can access and use. That means not only can anyone look for jobs on LinkedIn, anyone can post them too.

Before hitting the yellow ‘Apply Now’ box, make sure to research the job and company. The job may seem glamorous and extraordinary in text, but you need to read between the lines. If the post states that the position is available immediately, no experience is necessary, or the company contacts you right after you applied- it can be a sign of a job scam. With all of these factors, it can be possible that the company does not care who they hire since they are not taking the time to gather resumes and host multiple interviews. Using sources like Glassdoor can help you research companies and what their job positions entail.

Photo Credit: cybursleuth via Creative Commons

For example, there was a job opening for a ‘Marketing Account Manager’ listed on LinkedIn that sounded like a position I would be interested in. After reading reviews on Glassdoor, I came to discover that this job was reported to be a door-to-door cable salesperson. I went into the interview anyways because the job title and description on LinkedIn made the position seem like I would be managing the cable client. Lone-behold it was a door-to-door position. Although that may be a career aspiration for some people, it was not the direction I wanted to take my career in.

So before applying for a job using LinkedIn, do your research. Websites like Glassdoor can help you make sure the posting is a position that matches your career aspirations.