digital

Shake It Off: Lip Dub

Y’all can thank me later. Enjoy!

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5 Apps to Download Right Now

Before joining the iPhone world, I didn’t understand the pure genius behind the app realm. Sure, Blackberry’s had apps but I wasn’t too interested in anything besides the basics. Even in my first few months of iPhone-usage I kept it simple. Snapchat, Facebook, Pandora… Boy have things changed!

Check out my favorite apps of the moment:

Dark Sky

Dark Sky: Dark Sky puts other weather apps to shame. Utter shame. This app is the perfect thing to open right before you head out the door. It tells you things as direct as “light drizzle starting in 7 minutes and finishing 4 minutes later”. It’s great. There’s your normal weather information- radar, forecast, wind, all of that… just better. I highly recommend this for anyone who gets annoyed with the generic Apple weather.

Tinder

Tinder: Okay, don’t roll your eyes at me, I mean it! You’re lying to yourself if you haven’t either A) downloaded the app or B) thought about downloading it. Whether you are looking for love, lust, or simply the self esteem boost of swiping right to the hot guy/girl and receiving the “It’s A Match” pop up, we all go through a Tinder phase. It’s part of our culture.

Sleep Cycle

Sleep Cycle: I was pretty hesitant to download this when it was recommended to me. I prefer sleeping until the last possible minute- this app wants me to give it a 30 minute time frame of when I’d like to wake up? YOU MEAN WAKE UP 30 MINUTES BEFORE I HAVE TO? Yeah… no thanks! But, alas, I downloaded it and gave it a try. I’m officially hooked. I wake up more well rested than I ever. I’ve also discovered what makes me sleep better at night by checking on my nightly stats. It’s crazy how much an app can tell you… and how much better it can make you feel!

Fit Bit

FitBit: Disclaimer: you need to buy a FitBit before downloading the app… Don’t say I didn’t warn you! Anyways, this app rocks. The FitBit in general is incredible. I love tracked my steps and physical activity during the day. In case you haven’t learned by now, I’m really into being self-aware and apps like this are a great help! The app also lets me input my h2o and caloric intake. I program my personal info, my goals and my daily food, and the FitBit monitors my activity. It helps keep me on track to hit my goals. Not to mention it fuels my competitive side when I see I’m slacking on my steps!

buzzfeed

BuzzFeed: I’m only a little obsessed with BuzzFeed, I promise! I prefer the app to the site because it’s so much easier to navigate and use on the go. It’s perfect for when you’re sitting around doing nothing, ya know like at work? KIDDING! More like the waiting room for Drs appointments or while you’re broccoli is steaming. Anyways, check out the app and save yourself the headache of mobile site issues.

I know these are pretty basic, but you have to start somewhere! Once you teach yourself to use apps instead of the Internet you will want an app for EVERYTHING. Like hotels, food, happy hours, clothes, salon finders… It’s limitless!

Bloggin’ ADD

Let me preface this by stating that the blogsphere (in a personal sense) is still rather new to me. I’ve written blogs for work- but the past few months has been an adventure creating my personal blog. With every new adventure comes trial and error. That’s where my ADD comes in.

Instead of researching like a normal human being, I like to drive right in and start something. Yes, it can be a flaw, but when embraced, it’s a stellar attribute of mine. I’ve been jumping from blog site to blog site, trying to find the perfect way to share my thoughts with the world. But, when you change sites, you lose your work.

I don’t want to lose my work, because, let’s face it, I’ve written some interesting posts! For my own selfish reasons, I will be posting some old blog posts over the next few weeks, in addition to my new posts. Knowing me, I’ll probably say something along the lines of “original appeared” or “archived post”. Something that I think is clever to differentiate posts, when it fact is really isn’t clever at all.

 

so many apps, so little time

(originally posted 11/13 via tumblr)

So many songs, so little iPhone storage space. The struggle is real and you’re not the only one struggling!

I find myself constantly battling with myself on which songs to keep on my phone and which songs to take off. I try and think in advance, follow the boy scout’s motto and “always be prepared”, but sometimes it doesn’t work. How awful is it to forget to update your phone before a six-hour car drive back home and to realize that the majority of your music is either for studying or the gym. Trust me, neither of these massive playlists make for a dandy cruise home.

Perhaps an even worse tragedy, mentally preparing yourself for the jam a lifetime, to realize you haven’t downloaded that particular song you’re in the mood for.

How about hearing a song for the first time while you’re shopping at your favorite store and not knowing what it is?

The list of musical dilemmas goes on and on, but don’t worry, there’s an app for that. In fact, there’s an app for all of that!

It started out being the coolest thing in the world being able to store music on your phone, but now we have essentially every song we can imagine ready for our listening pleasure. Not only can we access every song, including some really cool remixes, but our phone can listen to a song and tell you the title and artist, and it can recommend songs based off other songs and artists you like.

Yup, your phone is that smart. But it’s not really your phone, it’s all of the apps that are available for an iPhone.

Shazam is great for when you hear a song and you want to know what the title is, or even who it’s by. Simply hold your phone out (preferably near the music source) and bam, it will read the song information for you. The best part about Shazam, it remembers all the songs you have asked it to recognize, so even if it’s a song that you know, but want to remember to download, Shazam it! You can even Shazam TV shows… but that’s a whole blog in itself, so I’ll save that for later.

Pandora is quite possibly the most used app on my iPhone. Yes, you can use Pandora on your computer, but how clutch is a personalized radio station on your phone? Yup, it’s pretty dang clutch. Pandora lets you type a keyword into the search and from there, it does most of the work. It comes up with a station for you, for instance, my station for working out is Applause. It’s full of upbeat dance-ish songs that keep me powering through my run. The only thing I do to better the station is click “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” depending if I like the song or not. It’s that easy to have an insane variety of music happening for hours on end.

My personal favorite app when it comes to music is Discovr. It’s brilliant. Think last.fm, but even better, and for your phone. I type in an artist I like to listen to, for example let’s say Lorde. From there it branches out with a bunch of similar sounding artists. I click one: The Naked and Famous (sounds cool, right?). Once I click that band, I can find even more artists. Apparently they sound similar to MGMT and Passion Pit. It can go on and on, creating a huge web of artists to look into. Or, I can share what I’m finding on Twitter, Facebook, text or email. I can save the music I like, I can follow other users who I think have a cool taste in music; I can even stream full songs or import full songs. This app does it all.

So, the music lover in me adores technology and the advances we keep making. In addition to these apps, there’s rdio, Spotify, Deezer, SoundCloud, YouTube, the list seriously goes on for a long time. It’s all about your personal preference and what you’re using the app for. It really depends on how much time you want to invest in your music, or if you’re just wanting something to play in the background.

These apps make it incredibly easy to integrate different social sites, share music and discover new music. The apps, all in their own way, are a form of promotion for the artists because they expose the listeners to the music, and from there it becomes a word of mouth phenomenon.  In fact, many of today’s top industry players are getting their hands on apps like these because they see the benefit for the artists and the consumer, as well as the potential financial profit directly from the apps.

music gets social

(originally posted 11/13 via tumblr)

Gone are the days of payola and disc jockeys being the sole musical influence for the masses. Twitter and other social media outlets have taken this concept and pushed it to a whole other level.

Take Miley Cyrus for example. Would Cyrus sell as many albums, concert ticket or songs on iTunes if it wasn’t for the online universe consistently pushing her name and brand out to the masses? Cyrus has capitalized on social integration for her personal brand, as well as being a brand that others are continually talking about. During the Video Music Awards, Cyrus became the most tweeted about subject in the history of Twitter with over 306,000 tweets being sent out per minute. The VMAs are a chance for artists to be rewarded for their triumphs, as well as share their talent with the world… but Cyrus did more than that. Cyrus started a buzz that to this day, months later, hasn’t died.

Continuing to capitalize on her social success, Cyrus took to her Twitter feed to promote her Vevo video release of “Wrecking Ball” using the hashtag #WreckedTheRecord. Whether it was her continuous updates on social media, or simply an intriguing video, “Wrecking Ball” did just that, it blew the Vevo record out of the water with over 19 million views in the first 24 hours online. The previous record holders, One Direction, had only 10.7 million views in the first 24 hours.

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Cyrus took another forward step with her social media and used it to slowly release her track list before her album was released.  By releasing her track list via Twitter, Cyrus was able to generate even more buzz about her upcoming release. Her timing of the track list was, of course, following the release and success of “Wrecking Ball”.

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Cyrus isn’t the only one releasing album information via social media. Fellow social media all-star, Justin Bieber, has taken to Instagram and Twitter with Music Mondays to encourage Beliebers to keep their eyes open for his releases.

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Bieber’s most recent release, “PYD”, dropped last Monday. Thousands of Beliebers took to Twitter to express their excitement for the track and how R.Kelly and Bieber “killed it”. Perhaps the incredible overload of PYD tweets and Instagram posts can be linked to Bieber’s followers. Bieber has over 47 million Twitter followers, the most any user has, and nearly 12 million Instagram followers.  Bieber and his team understand how important capitalizing on the social platforms can be and they use it to their advantage.

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Social media can be a huge tool to use when you’re dealing with music. The artist gains a following and sends messages out, fans feel a part of the artist’s life reading tweets, then fans send messages to their followers about the artists. It’s an incredible cycle and proves that word of mouth is a huge influencer over the music and artists that are popular today. Not only are the messages reaching the masses, but they are doing it for free. Bieber and his Beliebers and Cyrus and Smilerz are only a fraction of the most talked about trends on social media.

Next time you send a tweet out about the latest Cyrus stunt, or “Like” the selfie of Bieber on Instagram, know that you are helping influence the popular music and topics for today and tomorrow.

buzz about buzzfeed

 (originally posted 12/13 via tumblr)

It used to be when I opened up my Facebook I felt like I was drowning in my “friends’” relationship drama, family drama, friend drama, but not so much anymore. Now when I go to Facebook, I might as well be on Google. My Newsfeed is flooded with articles from some of the “it websites” of today, including one of my favorites, BuzzFeed.

I’m the first to admit that the initial flood of links was easy for me to ignore. Slowly but surely I began to click the links and read these articles that all of my friends were raving about. That was my mistake. I didn’t stay strong and avoid the addicting websites; I became addicted myself. The good news, I’m not alone in my addiction. The better news, this is yet another form of free public relations in the ever-evolving entertainment industry.

What is it about BuzzFeed that keeps drawing people in day after day? It might be the hilarious Gifs attached to smart-ass captions. Perhaps it’s the articles that deal with real-life struggles and when you read them, you can’t help but think “HOW DO THEY KNOW MY LIFE?” It could even be the posts about the new movie or music video that you just have to watch.

No matter what type of post you read, they all have things in common. The biggest commonality: if you don’t read it, you somehow feel like you won’t be relevant. In a generation full of FOMO (fear of missing out) and wanting to be relevant, BuzzFeed is #WINNING.

The short writing style, topics of relevance and use of humor are all pros of the BuzzFeed stories. Every day a handful of new stories become available on the website, but the archives are still easily accessible. The variety of articles that show up on my Facebook Newsfeed speaks for how well BuzzFeed does with circulating different stories, even if they are “outdated”. BuzzFeed also does a stellar job with integrating their social media outlets to help drive to the website. Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter and Facebook are all supplements to the BuzzFeed website. Each different area of the BuzzFeed site has a correlating Twitter page, too.

The BuzzFeed Muisc site is one of my personal favorites. I’m sure that you’ve heard the Xtina song… it’s heartbreaking. It brings tears to your eyes. Yes, that is stuff that I think, but BuzzFeed put it best in its quick article that perfectly complimented the YouTube video. In case you want to voice your opinion on the new tune, there are comment boxes at the article (and on every article, for that matter).
Perhaps Kanye is more your style and you’re not into the whole watch a YouTube video. Don’t worry, BuzzFeed did a story on the Yeezus Tour, complete with clever headers and Instagram photos. Maybe you don’t want to comment on the article, maybe Twitter is more your style. You’re not alone. A multitude of tweets have been circulating about the article and what people think, not only about the story, but also about Kanye.

BuzzFeed in itself is a way to get some free pr for different celebrities, movies, albums, etc. But the real draw to having BuzzFeed write about you is how quickly things can go viral. It doesn’t matter if it’s people tweeting about it or people posting links to Facebook, BuzzFeed is everywhere. If BuzzFeed is everywhere, that means its content is everywhere, which means the possibilities are endless for how you capitalize on BuzzFeed.

One thing’s for sure, if I’m releasing a new song or going on tour, I want to be the topic of BuzzFeed conversation.

oh, miley

(originally posted 9/13 via tumblr)

Have you seen Wrecking Ball yet? Chances are…you have. Did you see her VMA performance? Did you hear about it? Chances are… you have. Whether you like Miley or hate her, you know her name.

You probably also know that Bangerz is dropping soon and she used to be a Disney Channel star (yes, Hannah Montana, child star who gets the best of both worlds).

So, you hate her? You don’t like that she dances with foam fingers and runs around half naked? That’s fine. However, I don’t hate her. I love that she twerks, chops her hair off and is making a new name for herself. Did I mention she’s breaking records and doing music that makes her happy?

I was in the unfortunate situation of “watching” the VMAs via my Twitter feed. Boy was it blowing up. Although 9/10 tweets in my feed were disgusted and/or shocked by the performance, they were still tweets. I decided to start looking at trending topics… of course Miley is all over this. Some people thought she was brilliant, some thought she was insane… but all that really matters is that they did just that, they thought about her. After watching via Twitter… I was finally able to watch it. Yes, I admit I more or less had my mind made up about her performance (that I was going to love it). And I did. I would be lying if I said she didn’t rock the boat and make me slightly uncomfortable, but isn’t that the VMAs is about? Remember when the Britney Madonna kiss caused so much uproar? Exactly. You remember it because it was memorable, not because you loved it and it made you feel happy about life.

Miley tweeted following the VMAs… Smilers! My VMA performance had 306.000 tweets per minute. That’s more than the blackout or Superbowl!#fact.”

Point. Proven.

As VMA noise dies down, Miley gives the world another new “talking point” and it’s called Wrecking Ball.

The song itself caused lots of talking when it first came out. But not enough chatter, not for Miley’s style. The video, now that’s something that got people talking.

Miley broke the Vevo record, previously set by One Direction, for 19.9 million views in the first 24 hours. How awesome is that? You have to give the girl props, whether you hated the video or loved the video, you watched that video.

Miley tweeted about the day “Once we beat the record on @VEVO lets keep watching Wrecking Ball so we set a higher record #WreckTheRecordhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=My2FRPA3Gf8 …

Yup, she went ahead and #WreckedTheRecord. Her video is artistic. She means what she says. She loves what she does. And you can tell. Did I mention her body is flawless?  I’ll admit, I can’t hear the song anymore without visualizing naked Miley flying around on a ball and chain, but that doesn’t mean I don’t jam out to the song every time I hear it.

Long story short- Miley is making a name for herself, she’s doing the music she wants to do and she’s successful.