I never saw myself taking a social media class.
In fact, my first blog post was about how I was taking a hiatus from Facebook and other social networking sites. Imagine my chagrin when I found out that a requirement of the class was to use even more social networking sites to create and maintain a personal brand, the maintenance of which required daily posts on various social media platforms.
So, I made the accounts, standardized my profile picture, and added biographies. After the creation of the accounts, my activity on them stagnated and the accounts just sat. I was a horrible personal brand manager, but that was not a surprise to me.
I am a very personal and private person. I don’t like sharing my thoughts and life events online. Call me old school, but I enjoy talking to people in person. This posting thing is too impersonal to me. I needed something to get behind. I needed to make social media not about me. That was when a golden opportunity presented itself.
Since sophomore year, I have been volunteering for a community garden in North Omaha called City Sprouts. The organization is relatively well-known in Creighton circles because there are many Creighton organizations that volunteer at the garden every once in a while. Every year in May, the garden participates in Omaha Gives!, a 24-hour online fundraising event, which raises money for businesses and nonprofits alike. With such a busy schedule this semester, I was not able to volunteer in the gardens Saturday mornings. I thought working on a social media plan to help City Sprouts fundraise during Omaha Gives! would substitute for my Saturday morning gardening.
Once I got behind this social media campaign, I came to better appreciate the power of social media. I have logged on to webinairs about using social media in conjunction with Omaha Gives! and learned a lot from how other community organizations use social media. From working on this campaign and listening to Dr. Carol Zuegner’s lectures in class, I know that my social media presence will increase online. It is already growing.
Since January, my Klout score has doubled, from 19 to 42. In that time, I have also increased my “influence” on Kred. However, with an outreach level of one of 12, my social media presence still has room to grow and I mean to grow it, just like City Sprouts hopes to grow with the help of donations during Omaha Gives! this May 21.