The Power of the Social Media Message

I decided to take a break from my having my friends guest blog this week to share with you how social media impacted where I live.

Social Media hits home

Wednesday morning, I watched as a story developed nearby my hometown of Roanoke, Virginia. I got word of what happened where two journalists from WDBJ-TV were killed doing what most in the TV news business would think was a routine morning live shot.  As the word spread through social media I received a text from a friend in Arizona who shared a screenshot from a headline in England…he asked me, “What is going on in Roanoke?????” News, especially tragedies, spread fast.  My father who has been a broadcaster his whole life and is still in the business had calls and emails from family members who wanted to make sure that he wasn’t involved.

Information moves at a rapid pace through social media.  It is a conduit that most consume mass quantities of on a daily basis.  We look at our phones when we get up, check our computers throughout the day, and catch up in the evenings. Journalists have a very important and hard job of keeping up with what is going on in communities all around the world and feeding it to us the consumer.  They need to accurate and the competition is incredible to be first….because there is always someone right there ready to beat you to the punch.

Here in Roanoke I’ve seen an outpouring of compassion from WDBJ’s competitors who have risen to the occasion. Community organizations, businesses, along with law enforcement have joined in through social media. I’ve seen this extend to journalists around the country and world sharing their condolences, posting tribute pictures, sharing stories from WDBJ, and lending their support.  There have already been spontaneous prayer vigils at WDBJ along with community members leaving flowers, balloons, and stuff animals.  So many thinking of not only those who lost their lives but also the folks inside the building who somehow needed to carry on.

My personal belief

I believe with each tool we acquire in our lifetime, we should use it with respect.  The same applies to social media.  This tool should be used by each one of us carefully and respectfully.  Businesses use it to spread their message. As individuals we can use the platforms to uplift and encourage your co-workers, friends, and families….and how about your candidate??  Post pictures of people helping others.  Post a few of those animal videos most of us really like to see. Social media can be a place for the light to shine.

I welcome comments and feedback.  I’d love to hear your stories about how social media has encouraged you or ways you encourage others.

Blessings,

Mary Lu

Mary Lu Saylor

Connect with me:  

Email: marylusaylor@outlook.com

Blog : https://socialmediamarylu.wordpress.com/

Facebookwww.facebook.com/mary.l.saylor

Twitter: @marylusaylor

Instagram: @marylusaylor

Mary Lu Saylor is an Emmy-award winning journalist who spent 30 years in the television news business. Her experience includes work as a videographer, newscast video editor, and ultimately as the newsroom Assignment Manager at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, SC. Mary Lu is currently pursuing her passion of social media, which began during her years at WSPA-TV. She is a Social Media and Personal Success Strategist with GrowGreatCompanies.com

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Guest Blogger: Alison Lowry

Family NYC smaller

Alison Lowry and I worked together at WSPA-TV for many years.  She was a reporter out of the Greenville, South Carolina office.  After her marriage to an amazing man she has gone onto wonderful things in the world of publishing, mission work, co-hosting on HISRadio (a Christian radio station in Greenville, SC), and I’m sure she’d agree her best role as a mom.

Alison is a delightful person and is a huge promoter of social media in her personal as well as professional life.  I thought that it would be great to get her take on how she shares her messages.

What social media platforms are you on?  And how do you use social media?
I use Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and, my current favorite, Instagram. I use social media to encourage others, make people laugh and promote my platform as a Christian radio host, magazine editor and big supporter of Water of Life.

What platforms do you feel are the best to engage your audience or ideal client?
In general, I seem to get the most “likes” on Facebook, although sometimes engagement is higher on Instagram. I also manage social media accounts for HIS Radio and we typically have the most engagement on Instagram. It’s so interesting how you can post the same image or video in several places and it will spark conversation in one place, but not another. Even after 8 years studying and using social media I still don’t understand how that works!

Share one or a few things that have surprised you about using social media.
I am constantly surprised by how social media shrinks the world. I happened to follow this lady on Instagram and she posted a picture of Ebola survivor Dr. Kent Brantly and his wife Amber’s new book. Although I don’t know her at all I left a comment that I would be interviewing the Brantly’s the next day. A friend of the Brantly’s living in Liberia saw my comment and asked me to tell them hi. So the next day I did that and the Brantly’s were amazed when I mentioned the greeting from their dear friends Pam and Eric. Immediately they seemed to relax and I think were able to feel more comfortable with me because of this random connection between their dear friends.

About Alison

My days start really early– 3:56am as a matter of fact. That’s because I host the morning show on HIS Radio, a Christian station that broadcasts across the Carolinas and part of Georgia. I’m blessed to be able to share my faith and encourage others by telling incredible stories on a daily basis. Since we are like a TV show for radio you can also watch live at HISRadio.com, through our app and on our Roku channel.

I was born, raised and educated in Iowa, but now live in the beautiful community of Greenville, South Carolina with my husband Tim and son Sammy.

sammy cake 2

An Iowa State University journalism graduate, I began my career as a television reporter, working in newsrooms around the country.  I write for various publications and serve as the features editor of Belle, a local women’s magazine. I also serve as publicist for my family’s Christian publishing company Ambassador International.

I love to travel, especially with my husband. We have been to Belize, Guatemala, and the UK, but our most powerful journey was to Liberia, West Africa where we helped drill wells in remote villages with Water of Life. I also recently traveled to India and was blessed to see Water of Life’s amazing accomplishments for the Kingdom of Christ.

Connect with Alison

Twitter: @alisonstorm
IG: @alistorm
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/alisonstorm/
FB: https://www.facebook.com/alisonstormlowry
and
https://www.facebook.com/AlisonAStorm (Which I don’t use a lot, but someone once told me I needed. haha)

More about Alison: AlisonStorm.com

Thank you!

Thanks a bunch Alison for letting us peek in on your world. How cool is it to have friends that are so active in the social media world?!?  I am truly blessed. I hope you are enjoying the blogs featuring these great users.

I’d love to hear from the readers….leave a comment or a question in the box below.  I’d love to have you become a regular subscribers…click the follow button on the right side of the page 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and spending a couple of minutes with us.

Blessings,

Mary Lu

Mary Lu Saylor

Connect with me:  

Email: marylusaylor@outlook.com

Blog : https://socialmediamarylu.wordpress.com/

Facebookwww.facebook.com/mary.l.saylor

Twitter: @marylusaylor

Instagram: @marylusaylor

Mary Lu Saylor is an Emmy-award winning journalist who spent 30 years in the television news business. Her experience includes work as a videographer, newscast video editor, and ultimately as the newsroom Assignment Manager at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, SC. Mary Lu is currently pursuing her passion of social media, which began during her years at WSPA-TV. She is a Social Media Specialist with FindGreatCompanies.com

Guest blogger: Jaimie Moore

Jimmy, Jaimie and Spencer

I’ve been friends with Jaimie and her husband Jimmy Moore for a very long time.  We worked together at WSPA-TV.  Jaimie was a nighttime producer and Jimmy was an extremely talented photographer.  He was always interested in the stories he was telling and gadgets…yes, he still loves them!  There was a moment in August of 2011 that changed their lives forever.  Jimmy had an accident that left him paralyzed.  We immediately lost two precious people in our newsroom. Jimmy and Jaimie showed such strength through all of this.  I blogged about them a month after the accident…they continue to inspire me.

Jimmy and Jaimie are loved by so many.  Jaimie realized shortly after the accident happened that on that an enormous amount of people wanted to know how Jimmy was progressing.  She used the social media tool Caring Bridge to share news, pictures, and updates.  Jaimie is an incredible writer and she could use her skills to share the unfolding story.   At last check his page on Caring Bridge has over 54,000 views!

Jaimie took some time out of her extremely busy schedule to write this guest blog for me.  I’m very grateful!

What social media platforms are you on?  And how do you use social media?

I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Caring Bridge. I use social media after I publish each blog.  Social media throws my blog out into the internet world and sometimes lands in unexpected places. I get emails from people time-to-time who ask me questions or tell me they love my writing, or that our story is an inspiration to them or helps them. On the flip side, my blog has opened up so many doors to new friends and support that I didn’t even know I needed in this new life. A “blog friend” (whom I may never meet because she lives in Utah I think) had a two year old son that suffered a brain injury after a fence fell on him. He’s five now I think now, but, her life is drastically different now. So is mine. We blog through our hard stuff and support each other and before all this, I wouldn’t have known how to possibly begin to understand her life. Spinal cord injury and brain injury – way different. But there are so many similarities in the challenges we face. Just one example of how social media has helped me.

What platforms do you feel are the best to engage your audience or ideal client?

I think starting a “business” Facebook page — or a page dedicated to just my blog has helped. I could be doing more to get more followers probably but in the grand scheme of things, if someone wants updates about our life, they probably already like it. That’s why I use Caring Bridge for the important Jimmy stuff. Those people know what they’re getting when they sign up for those updates.

Facebook is a great way to get something out to our friends/family fast, and to update them on all events happening in our life, not just the SCI (spinal cord injury.)

Caring Bridge goes to those who purely want Jimmy medical updates.

Instagram allows for a more visual perspective of our life. I love telling our story through pictures.

Twitter, I can throw it into your feed. If you feel like clicking on it, you can. (I feel like adding blog/links to Twitter is the least effective platform for gaining readers.)

Pinterest can reach some really crazy-far places.

Share one or a few things that have surprised you about using social media.

I feel like I might have answered this question. Gaining support that I didn’t know I needed. Being opened up to others who are going through what I’m going through. Long distance relationships/bonds/tears/heartbreak happening over what I’ve written and what others have written. I didn’t expect to find an SCI community that would help me and I didn’t expect to form new kinds of lovely friends while living through a tragedy and sharing it on social media. While my introverted side wants to hide everything all the time, I know myself. I need support and even have to ask for it from time to time when everyone thinks I’m fine. I have to let them know sometimes I’m not and need some friggin’ help. 🙂

Moore family update

Jaimie and Spencer

A bundle of joy named Spencer arrived in November of 2014 for the Moore family.  This precious little girl is absolutely adorable and is the apple of both of her parent’s lives. I love seeing this sweet girl in my Facebook feed!

Jaimie’s Connection Points:

Facebook.com/theflyingtire

Twitter.com/prodgirl

instagram.com/jaimieleemoore/

www.pinterest.com/jaimielee/

www.caringbridge.org/visit/jimmymoore1

Jaimie’s blog: http://jaimiereda.blogspot.com/

Big Thank You!

Thanks Jaimie for taking time to put this together and share with my readers. Jaimie and Jimmy also deserve a big thanks for sharing their journey with the world.  I know that their story had touch thousands of people around the world.  There is so much to be learned from others.

Stay tuned for next week’s guest!  Make sure you follow my blog so it will come right to your inbox!

Blessings,

Mary Lu

Connect with me:  

Email: marylusaylor@outlook.com

Blog : https://socialmediamarylu.wordpress.com/

Facebookwww.facebook.com/mary.l.saylor

Twitter: @marylusaylor

Instagram: @marylusaylor

Mary Lu Saylor is an Emmy-award winning journalist who spent 30 years in the television news business. Her experience includes work as a videographer, newscast video editor, and ultimately as the newsroom Assignment Manager at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, SC. Mary Lu is currently pursuing her passion of social media, which began during her years at WSPA-TV. She is a Social Media Specialist with FindGreatCompanies.com

Guest Post: Jamarcus Gaston

I’m always looking for new ways to share information. I’ve invited some of my friends who are pretty savvy with social media to pop in as a guest blogger.  I think you will be pretty fascinated in how my incredible friends are using their platforms in so many unique ways.  I’ve asked each of them the same three questions to make things fair.

Guest blog kickoff

Jamarcus Gaston

We are kicking off our guest blog post series with Jamarcus Gaston. I met him when he was interning at WSPA-TV.  He was about to graduate from Furman University and you could tell he had lots of energy and enthusiasm.  After graduation he came to work at WSPA as an entertainment reporter and so many wonderful things happened for him.  He hosts a daily talk show (more info at the bottom of the blog) and honestly has more energy than a human should be allowed.  I’ve seen very few people accomplish so much in a day.

Q: What social media platforms are you on?  And how do you use social media?

A: The social media platforms I currently use are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, and PHHHOTO.

I use these social media sites to bring viewers, family, and friends along for the ride.  As an entertainment host and storyteller, I get a chance to see and experience a lot of things from a unique perspective and social media allows me (through pictures, video and sound) to share those moments instantly to the viewer. I get to show them really cool things as I am seeing them.

I use it to spark conversation—whether it’s a big sports story, an awards show on TV, or a quirky story that has everyone talking, social media allows me to hear my viewers directly.

I use social media to peel the curtain back on television. Back in the day, only select people got to see what happens behind the scenes, not anymore!

I use social media to get new segment ideas. I book about 3-4 segments a week based on leads on social media, mostly from Instagram.

I simply use social media to grow closer to those that I serve—saying hello is on Facebook is the first thing I do each morning, and that is important to me.

Q: What platforms do you feel are the best to engage your audience or ideal client?

A: Currently, I would say Facebook and Instagram are the best ones for our clients/ viewers. Most of segments are very visual and interactive so these platforms allow for that to really shine through.

Q: Share one or a few things that have surprised you about using social media.

A: The thing that surprises me about social media is how easy it can be. Yes, it can be a lot to manage, but as soon as you forget about posting and START thinking about connecting and sharing, it becomes less of a chore and more of a tool.

A little about Jamarcus….

Hey everyone! I am Jamarcus Gaston and I host and produce a daily morning TV show in Spartanburg, SC called “Studio 62.” We highlight food, music, arts, and all things local to the upstate of South Carolina and Western North Carolina.  Our show is only on TV for 30 minutes a day, so social media allows us to connect 24/7 and that is important to me. One of my favorite series is #JGBackpack which was a sparked after a viewer told me she wanted to ride along in my backpack, just to experience all the cool stuff from my vantage point. So now, when I am out and about and I see something neat or interesting, I use that hashtag #JGsBackpack.

Connect with Jamarcus

I would love to have you all along for the quirky ride—Follow me on Facebook @Jamarcus Gaston TV Host or @Studio62CW on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

We are also on the cool Gif, photo sharing site Phhhoto

Thanks, Jamarcus for taking time to put this blog together!!!  I know he is destined for big things in the TV world.  I hope you enjoyed this installment and will sign up to follow my blog.  I guarantee you are going to want to see who is coming up next! 

Blessings,

Mary Lu

Connect with me:  

Email: marylusaylor@outlook.com

Blog : https://socialmediamarylu.wordpress.com/

Facebookwww.facebook.com/mary.l.saylor

Twitter: @marylusaylor

Instagram: @marylusaylor

Mary Lu Saylor is an Emmy-award winning journalist who spent 30 years in the television news business. Her experience includes work as a videographer, newscast video editor, and ultimately as the newsroom Assignment Manager at WSPA-TV in Spartanburg, SC. Mary Lu is currently pursuing her passion of social media, which began during her years at WSPA-TV. She is a Social Media Specialist with FindGreatCompanies.com