Leap Day: What’s on your “Leap List”?


In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s February 29th. Things that happen on this date technically only happen every four years…That makes for a long time between birthdays, anniversaries, etc. I remember meeting a man when I was little who argued that he was only 20 years old, even though he was actually 80. By his argument, however, he had only had 20 “birthdays”. So, regardless of how you figure it, Leap Day is one of those fun occurrences that makes you want to go out and do something fun or memorable or adventurous . . .

This got me thinking about the new Honda CR-V commercials featuring the Leap List campaign. The commercials originally featured people who had goals they wanted to achieve before making a big “leap” . . . like having a baby  . . . or getting married . . . Then, they became more general, like this one about a guy who wanted to see where his Grandma grew up…

These commercials are part of a new campaign by Honda that includes a cool online “Leap List” creator. You can create a list of things that YOU want to do . . . Your own personal “Leap List” that you can share with friends on Facebook and check off your goals as you complete them. So, in the spirit of Leap Day, I created my own “Leap List” to share on the site . . .

As you can see from my list, I’m going to be pretty busy over the next two years if I plan to complete my list. But, it will be fun to try.  I even have a chance to win a year’s worth of gas by submitting my list to the Honda Leap List Contest.

One day . . . I will be able to look at my Leap List and be this girl . . .

So, this Leap Day, I encourage you to create your own Leap List . . . or Bucket List . . . or “stuff to do before I die” list. Then, get out there and start doing! 😉

Happy Leap Day!


Disclaimer: This post is in no way supported by, endorsed or paid for by Honda. All copyrighted materials remain the property of Honda and are intended to comply with the Fair Use Policy.


QR Codes Get Fashionable


Let me start by saying that I’m usually not a fashion magazine reader, because I rarely have the time. A few months ago, I got an email with a free $10 credit from MagazineLine. After browsing around the site a bit, I found that I could get a year of Elle and Allure for just $5 in addition to the coupon. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a good deal!

When my magazines came this month, my roommate beat me to reading them. She’s been listening to me for the last several months chattering away about social media and QR codes, so she recognized that there were more than usual in this month’s magazines. I went through the magazine and used my QR code reader, mobiScan QR, to read the codes. We found a wide range of ways that the codes were used, and I thought it would be fun to share! You will notice that some of the advertisements use Microsoft’s tag instead of typical QR codes. These rectangular, colorful codes work much the same as any other QR code, except they require the Microsoft tag reader to open them.

Here are the fashionable advertisements and the content that they shared via QR code or Tag:


Elle, June 2011, pg. 34-35

 The QR code for this super bright Sephora advertisement redirects to a YouTube video (below) about the product’s summer trends! 

Allure, June 2011, pg. 46-47

 The QR code for this golden Sephora advertisement redirects to a similar trend report video about Luminous Golds. I love the dynamic media used by their QR campaign and look forward to great things from it in the future. The company even created a QR code for it’s Make Up For Ever collection (see advertisement below). The QR code redirects to www.hd-not-retouched.com .

Allure, June 2011, pg. 71


Elle, June 2011, pg. 181

Allure, June 2011, pg. 51

The Microsoft Tags for these Garnier advertisements redirect to a cool how to video for the Creme Color and the Blow Dry Protector!

John Freida

Allure, June 2011, pg. 66-67

This John Freida advertisement (above) has a QR code that redirects readers to a how to video showing viewers how to best use the foam color!

And Many More . . . 

To see the QR links for the advertisements, simply click on the advertisement. Keep in mind that these links are optimized for mobile, so they may not show up as well on your computer screen. I hope you have enjoyed this quick look at how many fashionable brands and companies are using QR codes to reach their customers. You will notice that some of the more interesting campaigns aren’t so much selling the product as they are trying to offer assistance with the product or with how to select a product if you are in the market for one. I think that QR codes are a very interesting way to add content to print advertisements . . . What do you think????

Mark Schaefer’s “The Tao of Twitter”: A Twitter Guide for Beginners and Experts



My first knowledge of Mark Schaefer came through a classmate, Aaron Sachs (@AaronSachs), who had worked with Mark on some social media stuff for Aaron’s business Symply Social . Aaron sang Mark’s praises to our Advertising 490: Social Media class, and when he mentioned Social Slam tickets were going on sale, I was one of the first in our class (except for Aaron, of course!) to sign up. I was eager to see what this social media conference was all about. I considered the cost of $40 kind of expensive until I realized that attendees also received free food and free books! Included with registration was a copy of Mark Schaeffer’s The Tao of Twitter and Jay Baer’s The Now Revolution. I decided that even if the conference was boring (which of course it wasn’t!), I would still have two free books. Needless to say, Social Slam was an amazing opportunity and I even got my free books signed by Mark and Jay!

Earlier this week, I had time to sit down and read Mark’s book. While I was reading it, I kept finding myself nodding in agreement with Mark’s points. Because I loved the book so much, I wanted to share some of its key lessons with you—or at least what I thought was key. Mark hits on several ideas that I myself have thought of but not been able to put into words. Below are quotes from the book that I will be referencing in many future conversations with friends about how to best utilize twitter.

“Business benefits are created through three elements: targeted connections + meaningful content + authentic helpfulness.” (pg. 11)

These three elements make up the core of Mark’s The Tao of Twitter, and he offers great explanations for the importance of each. I especially like his emphasis on the importance of authentic helpfulness. Just this week, I wrote a blog post about books I wanted to read for summer to beef up on my social media knowledge. Someone over at Wiley Business Books (@WileyBiz) was kind enough to send over a list of social media books they had recently published, 3 or 4 of which I had listed. I was reminded by the list of a few more books I wanted to read, but had temporarily forgotten about. Whoever was Tweeting for @WileyBiz that day had no guarantee that I would buy any of their books or mention them anywhere, but they tried to be helpful and perhaps promote their products a bit. 😉

“ . . . Under normal conditions, Twitter is about engaging, not broadcasting, so it probably does not make sense to just broadcast on a regular basis.” (pg. 40)

This one hit home because of my extreme frustration with some social media specialisists who simply post and repost and re-repost links to their blogs, which contain only information which I already read when I read their books. (Obviously, Mark isn’t one of these people. His blog, {grow}, is an amazing source of fresh, insightful content!) While HootSuite and other services can help you schedule tweets if you will be away for a while, I strongly believe in the need for interaction. While a little shameless self-promotion can go a long way, you need to be sharing good, new content that can actually help your followers learn something that they don’t already know from reading your books. Which leads to our third point . . .

“If somebody only takes about themselves, their business and how great they are, you’re going to want to get away fast! But, if a person shows genuine interest in you, and offers help without regard for their own personal benefit, you will like that person and connect with them.”(pg. 47)

I LOVE following and being followed by people who are willing to interact on Twitter, even if they don’t have an idea in the world about how they “met” you on Twitter. A random Tweet by @AaronSachs introduced me to Kaarina Dillabough (@KDillabough) who lives in Canada and posts some very interesting things about social media on her blog, Decide2Do. As Mark says on page 32, the rule of creating relationships on Twitter is “You just never know!” There may come a day when I could be helpful to Kaarina or she to me. If she ever needs a place to camp out in Georgia, at least she would have an inside contact. 😉 Which brings us to the final quote I selected . . .

“At the end of the day, as long as you are satisfied with the business benefits you are receiving from Twitter, what anyone else thinks is irrelevant.” (pg. 73)

Some people probably think I spend way too much time hanging out on my computer—or my Android powered smartphone—tweeting away to people I’ve never even met in person. But, I find benefit and think that Twitter is providing me with a wonderful opportunity to learn from people that are the experts in the field. No expensive classrooms for me! I’m learning the ins-and-outs of social media from the pros who are out in the field working on it. And, the best of them are following Mark’s guidelines! Shouldn’t you read The Tao of Twitter and get a head start on your future as a member of the Twitter Tribe?

If you are interested in reading a more traditional style review of Mark’s amazing book, you can read some of these great video reviews below or visit the Tao of Twitter site to see a round-up of great reviews here.

Note: There were some minor typos and grammar issues which prevented a five out of five star ranking. I’m sure, however, that Mark is working on these and will have them all fixed for the second printing. Overall, an amazing book!