Monday, May 18, 2015

Abusive Behavior on Social Media

Have you ever been called names on social media? Join us this Thursday 8 p.m. as we discuss the problem of online harassment, consequences, and legal remedies. Our hash tag is #txsocialmedia.


Monday, May 11, 2015

Are You A Digital Hoarder?

Spring cleaning is in the air.  Kudos if you have cleaned out a closet, de-cluttered a room, or tackled those dust bunnies.  But what about your digital hoard? Do you zealously bookmark or favorite interesting blog posts and online articles that you promise yourself you'll read later (outside of work)?

When was the last time you cleared out your Dropbox, Evernote, Twitter favorites, browser bookmarks, or Pocket (formerly Read It Later) accounts?

                   Audrey Horne from "Twin Peaks" has seen your digital hoard, and it's not pretty.

Before you start feeling defensive, I'll share that I have a Twitter account with over 6,000 (or is it 9,000?) favorited tweets, as well as two different Evernote accounts. However, it is a satisfying feeling to eliminate your digital detritus, even if it is only a bit at a time. Think of it as feng shui for the cloud.


1.  Go in and delete or tag as much as you can in one exhaustive streak, then continue to stockpile digital items on a daily basis until you feel the urge to "clean" again.

2.  Organize (tag) and clean a little at a time as you go.
This is probably the easiest and most realistic option.  Even if you use a rudimentary tagging system such as work and personal, at least everything won't be clumped together.

3.  Start over with a new account, or accounts.
How to delete your..

4. Pay money for premium space. Evernote, Dropbox, and Pocket all have premium options.

5.  Reduce the amount of items you favorite or bookmark on a regular basis. This may be the most difficult option of all. 

Personally, part of the reason I bookmark web pages, videos and other items is "just in case" I need them again. But to be perfectly honest, I only ever go back and look up maybe 10% of these bookmarked items...often, more like 5%.  Yet, if I see something interesting online while at work and don't bookmark it for later, I feel...anxious.  After all...
  • What if I need it?
  • What if it turns out to be life-changing information?
  • What if I could save money and time by reading/watching it, or be better informed than before?

If I bookmark it, I can instantly forget it and move on to the next thing, without those niggling doubts in my brain.

What about you? How do you manage information overload?

Yvonne Mulhern is a board member of TSMRI. She currently uses Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive, and Twitter favorites.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Data Privacy Day Infographic - Online Data Privacy is Good for Businesses! #SmallBusinesses

As part of our role as a Data Privacy Day Champion, we also wanted to promote this infographic focused on how privacy is good for everyone, including businesses! #DPD15

Friday, January 23, 2015

Schedule Tweetchat Questions (Buffer App)

If you haven't had a chance yet, be sure to check out one of our #TxSocialMedia chats every Thursday at 8 p.m. Central Standard Time

Our team has found Buffer App to be an invaluable tool for ensuring success with our chat.  We use it each week to pre-schedule our questions, which is a big time-saver.

Take a look at our brief video tutorial below.

Find out more about creating a successful Twitter chat here and here.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Join TSMRI as a Data Privacy Day Champion for 2015! List of Three Data Privacy Day Twitter Chats

We are pleased to announce that TSMRI is a Data Privacy Day Champion for 2015! Data privacy is an important topic and sometimes it might be easy to users to forget to check the privacy policies of their favorite apps or online software on a frequent basis. 

The last time TSMRI participated in Data Privacy Day was January 2013. Here is our press release focused on that day:

This year's Data Privacy Day features a wealth of participation opportunities, especially Twitter chats (which we love). Here's a list of their Twitter chats:

#ChatDPD Twitter Chat: Things You Should Know About For your Privacy on the Go
January 14, 2015 from 3pm to 4pm EST

IBM Data Privacy Day Twitter Chat (Use #IdentityMixer to Join)
January 28, 2015 from 10am to 11am EST

#ChatDPD Twitter Chat: We Heart Privacy - Top Privacy Tips for 2015
February 4, 2015 from 3pm to 4pm EST

We definitely plan to participate in each chat! Will you join us?



Monday, January 5, 2015

Start - and keep - a successful Twitter chat (part 2)

 Hi, and welcome back! Part one on starting a successful Twitter chat can be found here.

6. Vary your questions.

Mix it up and keep things interesting! For example, a few days beforehand, have the audience submit questions or topics.

Another way to do this is to do some research on your topic. What are other people saying about it? 

Need reputable sources? Add or to your Google search words. This will ensure that your results will be limited to college and university websites (.edu) or U.S. state or federal sites (.gov), respectively.

Alternatively, you can use a mind-map of your topic to brainstorm ideas.

7. Use sponsors.

Some of our sponsors for #txsmc14.


Who says sponsors are only for your blog or YouTube channel?

Get creative and make your Twitter chat a contest one week. Ask a local business that rocks on Twitter or social media to sponsor a week’s Twitter chat and give away a prize at the end (@GranburHoffbrau sponsored a @TSMRI #txsocialmedia chat!).

This is how you build relationships with your community! There are websites that will randomly pick a number or a name for you to keep things fair., Math Goodies, and Random Number Generator are a few.

Contest ideas:
- “Bring a friend; whoever brings the most to the Twitter chat will win ____.” (Friends can be asked to Tweet @ you with the person that “brought” them.)
- “A random participant will be chosen to win a gift card from ____.” 

8. Stay connected.

creative commons licensed ( BY-SA ) flickr photo shared by Cast a Line

Throughout the week, connect with your usual Twitter chat participants. Let them know that you value their participation.

Tweet at the participants in the days leading up to the Twitter chat.
Remind them of the topic for this week. Let them start thinking about the week’s topic in advance.

Interact with your participants on the social media platform that they use most frequently. Just because they are participating in a Twitter chat, doesn’t mean that Twitter is their most used platform. Be sure you are interacting on a platform that your audience uses the most, or interact equally on all platforms that you have (Don’t leave anyone out by only using one platform!).

9. Seek and find.

creative commons licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Au Kirk
Seek out potential participants.
Don’t hesitate to start a conversation with them, let them know that you enjoy their account, then throw something out about you upcoming Twitter chat. Sometimes people just don’t know how to look for Twitter chats so it helps to go out and find participants yourself.

Follow influential people in the topic that your chat is in.
Reach out and make connections. When you try to connect with influential people, research that person. Find out a little information about them and when you connect with them, let the person know that you find their tweets engaging and interesting--but only if you are sincere.

Join other chats. Don’t kill someone else’s chat by promoting your chat, but participate and connect with the other people in the chat. Afterwards you can tweet or DM them about your chats.

Lastly and most importantly:

10. Don’t get discouraged.

There may be a week or two when only three people (on a good day) participate in your Twitter chat. Don’t get discouraged; there is always another week!

Reach to more people and let anyone and everyone know about your chat for the next week.
Make sure you are interacting as the chat is going on. Favorite and re-tweet while your participants are answering questions. Don’t just schedule your questions then sit back and watch. It’s hard for people to interact with a wall; let them know that you care about their responses.

You can find out more about our weekly #txsocialmedia chat here. Here's a list of other Twitter chats.

Victoria Greer is a senior at Tarleton State University. Her major is Public Relations & Event Management with a minor in Tech Writing. She plans to graduate in May 2015. Currently, she is the Executive Social Media Coach for TSMRI and has been on the team going on 2 ½ years.

Friday, December 19, 2014

How to start a successful Twitter chat

This is the first of a two-part information session about how to start and maintain a successful Twitter chat. Enjoy, and happy tweeting!

1. Know your audience. Do your research.
creative commons licensed (BY-NC-ND) flickr photo by Singing With Light:

It is important to know who your audience is because that will help you form your questions more easily.

---Before starting your chat, ask yourself: Will my audience benefit from my chat? How?
---You want your chat to be useful and needed to attract people. If there is already a chat out there that is similar to yours, think, what would make people want to come to yours?
---How can you draw people to your Twitter chat? Giveaways, sponsorships, contests, and memorable hash tags help do this.

2. Keep it short.
Remember, you want people to share these questions on their accounts to get the word out. If you wrote 138 characters, there isn’t any room to quote your Tweet…Also, who wants to read a paragraph when questions are coming at them every 8 minutes (if your chats are like @TSMRI)? Also, you are allowed to shorten words &use symbols. If ur question is getting long, feel free 2 use symbols or shrtn words.But make sure ur question still makes sense if u shrtn words!

3. Choose a memorable hash tag.
creative commons licensed (BY-SA) flickr photo by romana klee:
Whenever a brand, company, or organization uses a long and random hash tag to promote something, it often doesn’t catch on like they hoped it would. If your hashtag is something like #VictoriaGreersTwitterChatOnThursdays or #VictoriasSocialMediaChat, consider a new one. Keep in mind that the hash tag will be at the end of your Tweets and peoples’ responses. The hash tags above are 24 - 35 characters long. This greatly limits someone’s response.

Think of a hashtag that relates to your business or organization or a product/service. If your business and chat is about social media, create your hash tag along those same lines. When your audience thinks of your business, they should be able to think of your chat hash tag too. Don’t make it hard by choosing a hash tag that is unrelated to your services or business.

If you’re in New York and your chat's focus is about social media, a possible hashtag could be #SocMediaNY or #NYSocMed. If you are in Idaho and your chat's focus is about food, try #FoodID or #RecipeID. Get creative and make it memorable!(Always search Twitter to make sure that the hashtag isn’t already being heavily used).

4. Use other (heavily used) hashtags to cross-promote your chat.
When you are creating your questions, feel free to “hack a hash tag” or throw in common hash tags. Be resourceful. If there is another chat that happens on the same day/time or that has the same theme, throw their hashtag around during your Twitter chat (Just remember: there is a fine line between hash tag "hacking" and hash tag "hijacking."). If your chat is about social media, try to hash tag #socialmedia in a question. Whatever the topic is, use related hash tags. Maybe it is travel & social
media; in which case, you can use #travel or #destination. But still remember, keep your questions short and don’t #hashtag #every #single #word (it can get confusing!).

5. Scheduling platforms are your friend.
Welcome to the fast paced world of Twitter, on top of an already fast-paced world full of family, work, and school. Pre-planning and scheduling your Twitter chat questions is a lifesaver. Research several platforms and decide which one is best for you (@TSMRI currently uses @Bufferapp, and has used @Hootsuite before).

There are several choices with various pros and cons. Here is a short list of some scheduling platforms and the social networks that they schedule to:

 Everypost: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Dropbox, Email, Company Pages
A screenshot from

 Hootsuite: Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram
 Buffer app: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+,

 For @TSMRI, we use Buffer app to schedule Thursday night Twitter chats!

 ThoughtBuzz: Facebook, Twitter

Don't forget to attend the TSMRI social media chat, which is most Thursdays at 8 p.m. Central Standard Time.  Our hash tag is #txsocialmedia.  You can find out more about the chat, including upcoming topics, here.

Victoria Greer is a senior at Tarleton State University. Her major is Public Relations & Event Management with a minor in Tech Writing. She plans to graduate in May 2015. Currently, she is the Executive Social Media Coach for TSMRI and has been on the team going on 2 ½ years.
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