Social Media Best Practices for Developing Your Brand Image

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Anyone who is developing a brand should ask themselves: What are social media best practices that focus on developing the brand image? Brand image is huge! It’s the impression of your product held by real and potential customers.  Brand image doesn’t just happen over night, it is developed over time.  Since starting the above all, try something brand just 3 short months ago, and with the help of my Harvard Extension School course, Social Media and Branding, I have developed a list of some of the most elite social media best practices that I have found to be true throughout my journey.

Social Media Best Practices

  • (1) Keep a consistent image and message across all social media platforms.  This does not mean that you post the same content across all channels, in fact you do the opposite.  You cater your posts to your audience on each platform.  But you do want to keep your brand image and message consistent so your audience does not get confused.  Take LinkedIn for example. LinkedIn’s image is consistent across all channels: Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc.  It is a picture with an astronaut and the saying, “you’re closer than you think.”  The whole idea behind LinkedIn is that it will help you get where you want to go in life and this is easily recognized on each platform.

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Overcoming my Flying Fear: The Sky’s the Limit

With summer quickly approaching I thought it would be a good time to write about my own “Charlie Tango” helicopter adventure last summer. The irony here is that I am petrified of flying.  I still fly because what kind of life would I live if I never traveled? I want to explore different parts of the world but if I let my fear consume me then I will miss out on a lot of great adventures.

So back to last summer. Mike and I spent every weekend at the Great Sacandaga Lake or GSL for short. With the motto: the best kept secret of the Adirondacks, it truly is a hidden gem.  When we are at the GSL we stay at Giuseppi’s camp (super Italian name I know). Giuseppi is Mike’s childhood friend and Giuseppi’s two brothers, Giacamo and Gaetano, and his college roommate, CJ and CJ’s girlfriend Courtney, spend the weekends with us. Their “camp” really isn’t much of a camp, it’s more of a house.. a big house, that’s right on the water.

A view from camp
Our view from camp: sitting on the back deck

The Lanzi Family 

Giuseppi’s family is very well known in this area because they own three out of four restaurants on this lake:

I recommend stopping at anyone of these restaurants if you are in the area. Sport Island Pub and Lakeside Tavern are more casual places.  If you are looking for food, drinks, and entertainment, you can’t go wrong with either one. If you are looking for a formal restaurant that is a little more fancy, Lanzi’s on the Lake is the place to go.  The best part about all three places is that you can pull your boat right up to their docks and leave it there while you eat. Now back to the helicopter ride…

The Sky’s the Limit

Mr. Perrone, a family friend of the Lanzi’s, owns a very successful aviation leather company, so as you might have already guessed, he owns a couple airplanes and helicopters too.  One day last summer he flew his helicopter to camp and graciously took everyone that was there for a ride.

Mike and me in the helicopter before we took off
Mike and me in the helicopter before we took off

I’m not going to lie, I was pretty scared at first because like I mentioned earlier I am petrified of flying.  But I wasn’t going to let my fear stop me from this once in a lifetime opportunity.

Mike and me in the helicopter flying
Mike and me flying in the helicopter

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My Big Apple Adventure

NYC Skyline

This weekend Mike (my boyfriend of 3 years) and I went to NYC to visit my cousin Vanessa and her husband Nick. We’ve visited them a dozen times before, but this trip was extra special. Usually when we go down to the City we hit up all of the local bars and just kind of bounce around with no set plans, however this time we decided to do something neither Mike nor myself have done before. We decided to make this an educational trip and go to the American Museum of Natural History and the 9/11 Memorial.

A T-Rex fossil at the American Museum of Natural History
A T-Rex fossil at the American Museum of Natural History

Ever since the Night at the Museum was released back in 2006 with Ben Stiller, I have craved to go. To be completely honest, the museum was packed so it was a little overwhelming at times especially once we made it to the fourth floor, which was where all the dinosaur fossils were (the part I longed to see most). No surprise though since it was a Friday afternoon and we were in the middle of one of the largest cities in the world in one of the most popular museums ever created.  The T-Rex fossil that is depicted in the photo to the left was incredible to see, it honestly left me speechless. To think that this creature once roamed our Earth is remarkable.

Of course after the museum Mike and I did take a pit stop to grab a couple drinks.  We stopped at the Beacon Bar, which was right down the street from my cousins apartment. I recommend this sophisticated cocktail lounge to anyone who is near the Upper West Side or as NYC residents call it, UWS. When you walk in your eyes completely surpass the brilliant lit bar and they go right to the black leather couches in the center of the room. It really is a quaint little place, where you can unwind with friends by drinking a couple of their signature cocktails, while occasionally listening to live Jazz.

Saturday was a day that Mike and I had been looking forward to for a very long time. We were finally going to go to the 9/11 memorial. Back in 2001 when 9/11 occurred I was in 5th grade and Mike was in 7th. For anyone that was alive during this time, it’s something we will never forget. You probably remember everything about that day, like what you did in school or work, the rumors that began to circulate, the horrifying details that came to be known, watching the twin towers crumble to the ground right in front of your eyes, and all of the overwhelming emotions that flooded your body.

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The Future of Marketing

My prediction: Video will be the future of marketing. In fact, video is on its way there already and others are noticing this trend.

Why? It’s easy, technology. Innovations in technology have made it increasingly easy to film and share videos.  Who do we have to thank? Apple, GoPro, YouTube and FaceBook, just to name a few.

What this means for brands? Video content allows brands to better connect and engage with their customers. Diode Digital has found some incredible video facts. They found that video promotion is 600% more effective than print and direct mail combined and before reading any text, 60% of site visitors will watch a video if one is available. According to Huffington Post, in 2017, 74% of all Internet traffic will be video!

If you or anyone you know has any inspirational, creative or fun videos please send them to us at   We want to post success stories of our viewers to inspire others and you may just be one of them! -JC

A Man With a Motive



Pave your own trail by taking the road less traveled by…

-Utility Associate: “You have two options sir, pay your bill or don’t pay it”

-Steve Erby: “If I don’t pay, you’ll turn my power off”

-Utility Associate: “Exactly”

After one man noticed that his utility bill had been continuously increasing each month with no obvious explanation, he called his utility company to get some clarification. Except he didn’t get clarification, he got something better. He got a motive to find an alternative source of energy for him and his family so they didn’t have to continue to pay into this monopoly. He turned his blazing obsession to outsmart the utilities into an astonishing passion to share with the world, which ultimately became an extraordinary example of success.

In 2009, Monolith Solar Associates, LLC was born.  The two founders, Mark Fobare and Steve Erby– one a Niskayuna-native, the other a US Army veteran– started the company out of a garage operation in East Greenbush, NY. Since then Monolith Solar has grown to be one of the most successful solar firms in New York State. Both Mark and Steve met through Hudson Valley Community College’s solar program. Mark has a background in engineering, while Steve’s background is in sales. Together they formed an unstoppable team.


From left to right: Steve and Mark. Photo credit: Donna-Abbott-Vlahos.
A photo of Steves house. This is the first solar system they ever installed and this is where the company started.
A photo of Steves house. This is the first solar system they ever installed and this is where they started the company out of.

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Window of Opportunity: Influencers

WIndow of Oppertunity

What is a window of opportunity? According to Macmillan Dictionary, it is “an opportunity to do something, that will only be available to you for a short time.”

I like to refer to the time we have on Earth as our window of opportunity, because before we know it, we can exist for an entire life time without actually living.

A few of my favorite key influencers, who have taken advantage of this window of opportunity, are Paid To Exist, EarthPix, and The Blonde Abroad.

Paid To Exist is a brilliant blog (partly because we share the same belief that you should get paid to do what you love), not to mention that it’s motivational, gives great advice and is brutally honest with a dry sense of humor. Take the title of popular posts for instance: The Best Way To Solve A Problem: Give Up; How I Stay Productive And Get Massive Amounts of Shit Done; and Kill Your Plans And Start Getting Shit Done. Catchy, interesting, and straight forward. Paid To Exist also does a great job of establishing interactive relationships among its audience. This is done through webinars and workshops that aim to bring people’s passions to fruition. Although an influencer, it’s also competition, and a worthy component indeed.

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Don’t Exist. Live.

IMG_0188Everyday the sun rises and the sun sets. It’s clockwork. Don’t waste the precious time you have on this earth doing anything other than what you love. “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”  We’ve been bred to graduate high school, go to college, choose a major that will make us a lot of money and then spend the rest of our lives working to make someone else’s dreams come true. It’s ironic that we live in a country where the national ethos is based on the American Dream. We have the resources and opportunities to achieve prosperity and success yet so few people take advantage of this. Wasn’t America founded on the basis of freedom?  So why are so many people slaves to corporate America?

We’ve been brought up to not take risks and to play life safe, to get a degree that will make us a lot of money rather than one that will make us happy, to believe that you need money to make money.

It’s time to stop living by these standards, falling victim to a mediocre, run-of-the-mill lifestyle. If you have a dream it’s time to take the leap of faith and go for it. As long as you have passion, drive and patience, nothing is impossible. Why work your entire life to fulfill someone else’s dreams, spend the valuable time you have in this world chasing yours. Remember, there is only one you, and if you’re not being yourself the world is missing out. Don’t exist. Live. -JC