Welcome to the Ampersand Blog

The peeps at Kel & Partners have a lot to say. After all we are public relations and social media zealots who thrive on sharing interesting news and great stories with the public. The Ampersand Blog is really the voice of our Peeps – the kick-ass team of people that work at K&P. Whether it’s a story about the way PR works NOW, the social media universe, our families, beloved pets or quirky travel experiences, you’ll find it all right here. You may laugh, you may cry, but the best part is you’ll leave feeling “wicked smaht” as we like to say here in Boston.

Archive for the ‘Facebook’ Category

  • Facebook

    Deirdre Carey | Tuesday, July 12, 2011 21 Comments

    Facebook – The New Love Connection?

    As a single, 44 year old divorced woman, I’ve been in and out of the dating scene for about 8 years now. And boy, how times have changed. I remember a long time ago when we young gals would meet guys at local bars, work parties, or even weddings (which is where I met my future ex-husband.)

    Then along came Match.com. At first, no one would ever conceive of admitting to going to find a date, heaven-forbid, at an online dating site – that would mean you were desperate, right? WRONG! Well, with Match.com’s almost instant success, opinions quickly changed – and everyone was uploading Match profiles (I hate to say it, but I know of people who weren’t even single who joined to “see what was out there and available!”) On a happy note, I personally have five friends who have met & married someone they met on an online dating site.

    While perusing the Today Show website this morning, I came upon a story that piqued my curiosity – “Hot or Not” Facebook app leads to marriage.

    In a nutshell, three-years ago a Brazilian woman named Gisele (not to be confused with the other famous Gisele from Brazil who I’m convinced stole my soon-to-be 2nd husband Tom Brady) posted a picture of herself not only on her Facebook profile, but also on the Facebook app “Hot or Not.” Gisele, a flight attendant, had broken up with her boyfriend and was trying to get back into the dating scene.

    Low and behold, a gentleman by the name Gavin Jenkins found Gisele “Hot” and months of IMing, emailing and Skyping lead to a first date and ultimately marriage!

    Why did this idea work? According to Gisele, being able to see his pictures on his Facebook page, and learning about his hopes and dreams from his profile information was what sealed the deal for her. Gavin proudly confesses, “I have a lot to thank Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg for. He helped me find my soulmate – I definitely owe him a pint.”

    It is an interesting concept, don’t you think? If you’ve ever created a profile page on an online dating site, you’ll know that you’re instructed to fill out pages and pages of information about yourself. And for those who have (me) filled one out, you write and edit, and write and edit in the hopes that you sound interesting, and intelligent, and witty and fun, in the hopes of attracting someone with similar personalities and interests –while weeding out any Ted Bundy’s or sounding too much like The Virgin Mary/Tara Reid!

    But with Facebook, I’m guessing about 80% of the profiles are legit. Your page clearly showcases who you are – through your status updates, images, causes you belong to/support , what you are passionate about, what brings you joy, and your true beliefs.

    I’m thinking we’ll see more Gavin & Gisele stories popping up in the near future, don’t you? And I have to agree that this may be a great way to met someone – because both of you get to see the real deal!

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  • Facebook

    redheadmeag | Thursday, April 28, 2011 22 Comments

    Let’s get it on…line

    As a PR person, I am a rabid consumer of media. I subscribe to 12+ magazines and get giddy the days they arrive in my mailbox. My day always begins by flipping between Today, The Early Show and the local news stations. On my drive in to work, I listen the radio every day, flipping between local stations and NPR.

    But the biggest rock of crack in my pipe (to borrow a phrase from Kel Kelly) comes from the internet. I subscribe to dozens of newsletters from media sites and bloggers to have news delivered to my inbox, all fresh and ready for me when I get in to work. My Google RSS feed should have it’s own internet zip code. And Twitter….ah, Twitter. I follow every mass media outlet known to (wo)man, use TweetDeck to separate news sources by topic so at a glance I can consume dozens of pieces of information to stay on top of what is going on. My friends share tons of news via Facebook, and Facebook Connect enables me to communicate with them about the stories they read across the internet. What a wonderful world!

    My dependence on the internet to stay up-to-date becomes most apparent on those oh-so-busy days when I find myself with several out of office client meetings, on location for news segments and knee deep in pitching. If I go a day without checking Drudge Report, Huffington Post, Business Insider, CNN, Slate (and many more) – the next day, I am shocked to realize how much has happened without me even knowing it. I can’t imagine my life without internet news to stay informed.

    What about you? Is the internet your primary news source? What is your favorite media format?

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  • Facebook

    Deirdre Carey | Friday, October 22, 2010 27 Comments

    Social networking and fundraising – from door knocks to in box

    If you’re around my age – let’s just say 40-something – I bet you can remember your first fundraising efforts, soliciting money for a worthy cause. In the suburb of Boston I grew up in, the charity of choice in school was Unicef. And every Halloween during my grade-school years, my mom would slave over designing me a beautiful fairy, or princess, or ballet costume, only to then release me into the neighborhood bundled up in a down jacket and carrying a flashlight and a Unicef box. Mind you, I grew up in a huge neighborhood with about 50 other children who were all soliciting change on that one night during the year. No wonder when I dragged my tired, sweaty body home to dump out my pillowcase full of sugary treats and then, subsequently, my Unicef box, it was only filled with pennies and an occasional nickel! The obvious reason for the lack of larger monetary donations was simple – 50 kids were hitting up the same group of people! And then as we got older, we were hitting up the same neighbors, aunts and uncles with the school wrapping paper and Yankee candle fundraisers! It was such a tedious task, going door to door with the catalog, the sponsor sheet, having people give me checks, or cash, it got to be too much!

    Boy, how things have changed! Now kids today (and adults too) don’t even have to physically interact or have a verbal conversation with their potential donors since social media hit the scene. For kids with Facebook accounts, they simply write up a brief description on their profile, and send a link to where you can donate. As adults, the same is true, whether you’re walking to find a cure for breast cancer, or cycling across the state to bring awareness to domestic violence, you don’t have to “hit people up” face to face any longer. Zip them an email, send a message through Facebook, Tweet about what event you are partaking in, and then just wait and see who responds. In fact, you don’t even have to collect any cash or checks because the majority of nonprofits who are sponsoring these fundraising events are set up with PayPal – so no money exchange is necessary. They even have templates to send out “Thank You” notes via email once someone sponsors you. The good news is, you can post pictures of yourself participating in the event, and you can Tweet about it every set of the way.

    We are all busy, going 100 miles an hour everyday, so yes, the quick fix is to go online, and make a donation to support a friend or family member with their cause. And the plus side is you can reach a far wider audience when soliciting online, rather than going door to door. But lets face it, when it comes to my kids needing to fundraise for their school or sports program, the paperwork lands on my desk, and I then do the fundraising – all via social media outreach. I just don’t have time to call people, explain what the fundraising effort is for, chase people down for their donations, and then send thank you notes. And I’ll be honest, during these tough economic times, it is somewhat awkward and uncomfortable to have to ask people to hand over money, even when they know it is for a good cause. So I think it’s easy to hide behind the email or Facebook message. That way the rejection or “sorry I can’t help” is less uncomfortable for all involved. So from a timing, logistics and a comfort-level perspective, for me, social media outreach is the way to go!

    But I can’t help but think the lack of human contact deflates the purpose of doing something good for humankind. I can tell you this much, a chubby little cross-eyed Boy Scout, sporting white tubes socks with his Teva sandals, and huge coke bottle glasses shyly rang my door bell not that long ago and there was just no way humanly possible that I could not buy the $19.00 box of Kettle Corn popcorn from him. I had never met the child before, didn’t know where he lived, but to see that sweet innocent round face looking up at me, I raced for my checkbook. Now if that same child somehow got my email address and sent me an email, or a message through Facebook, I highly doubt I would have purchased what was surely the most expensive popcorn I’ll ever have in my life!

    How do you feel?

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