We just got a new Smart TV and I’m super stoked. Sean and I worked from home the day it arrived and we also ordered tacos which turned into a great game of tv or tacos?! It’s my first time having a *brand new* TV.
Our previous model was bought 2nd hand years ago, we’re retiring it to the cottage now. The Sony 4K Android Smart TV is so clear and it was really easy to set up. It comes with Google Play, Netflix, and internet connectivity making it easy to watch your fav shows, download movies, or watch videos on YouTube.
Over the last year, I’ve been making our home smarter with the addition of Hue Lights, a Dyson fan, Alexa, and now an Android Smart TV. As we start to make our home smarter, we’ve got so many entry points putting us at risk for privacy and hacks.
The solution is to make sure we can browse the internet and watch all our fav shows without having personal data compromised. ESET is a leader in security solutions for home computer & mobile. They’ve created the world’s first ever security solution for Android Smart TVs, using tech to guard against cybercriminals with their eyes on connected TVs.
I quite like their i-Robot style dude below.
Accept from the Home Menu
Good to go!
There’s a free version available for download as well as a paid version that gives you premium features for a year at $14.99. I went for Premium. If you have a Sony Android TV, the app is already downloaded you just have to pop into the HOME section from the remote and click Accept.
Android TVs are run on the Android OS used for phones and tablets meaning the software can extend to more of your devices. ESET can be used on up to 5 devices under one Google Account.
You wanna watch more Wild Wild Country tonight, honey?
There’s Anti-Virus and Anti-Phishing and the ability to set up regular scans anytime. It also keeps an eye on any browser you might be using on your tv. One thing that really peaked my interest was the ability to watch for spying using TV sensors like the microphone and camera. Audio spies really creep me out, we’ve all seen ads on Facebook after having a conversation about something.
In a time where we’re getting smarter with our gadgets, it’s time to get smarter with our home security.
This post is in partnership with ESET. Smart home security is important. Take the time to secure your networks and always use a smart password!
This summer I went to Vancouver to meet with the Canadian team of TelusAdvocates. I’ve shared my love for Telus over the years but this experience was truly amazing. They flew in content creators from across the country to visit their Vancouver office, tour Telus Garden, create, eat, explore, and build relationships.
I’ve worked with heaps of brands but I truly admire the influencer program Telus has built over the years. Ok yes, I am a little bias because I chatted with the team before they created the program and shared my likes, dislikes, and brand experiences. They have set the bar high for what it means to work with a telecom company or a big brand. The experience (as an influencer) is tailored to each person’s style of content and audience.
In this post, I’m sharing a few of my tips for creating a great influencer program with Telus as my example.
The thing about being an influencer is that you’re usually sharing your real life, so when you work with a brand, it means authentically integrating their content into your own experience.
You have to get to know each other in order to learn what works and create opportunities that mutually benefit the relationship.
It’s cool when you work well together and even cooler when it becomes a friendship. I’ve worked with Telus for about 8 years now and we’re colleagues but also friends. I can text with jokes, links, or that odd time on the weekend when I broke break my phone. (Sorry!)
Since we’ve built a good working relationship, we all reach out whenever something cool comes up like an event, giveaway, or content idea. That’s why working with new brands is one of the best things you can do as an influencer, as long as you’ve got the audience for it, of course. That’s why so many influencers tend to use services similar to Socialfollow®
in order to boost their audience numbers and make their profile more attractive to brands.
It really sucks when you’re scrolling Instagram and you see a sponsored post that seems kinda generic, but then you see another Influencer say almost the same thing, then another, and god forbid another. It doesn’t show personality, it’s not that creative, and it’s boring. Everyone is different and creates content (hopefully) in their own style.
Your influencer crew should be talking in their own voice and sharing photos that look like their real life, not just an #ad.
Telus is really cool about knowing what each of us likes and letting us create our own stories. At the start of the year, we have a 1-on-1 meeting where go through content ideas for the year. Each influencer picks out the events and ideas that speak to them, and we plan around that.
I am amazed that this doesn’t happen more. Brands have groups of influencers, sharing content around the same #hashtag, often in the same city, but they never hang out or have a chat. There are online platforms designed to help creators and businesses find each other like Socially Powerful, but I still feel more needs to be done. Bring your people together! It’s a great way to build relationships between client/influencer but also between the creators.
We like hanging out, taking photos together, meeting new people. It helps strengthen the team, give each other ideas, and the brand has an amazing opportunity to create original content.
If you have a great team of people you like working with who are sending out good vibes and great content, why not use that power for good? Telus gives $45M a year communities across Canada and half a billion since 2000. This year at TELUS Days of Giving events 35K employees will be involved in 2,000 events across Canada.
In Vancouver, the Telus Advocates (us) and a bunch of Telus employees joined forces to pack 200 bags with weekend snacks for Backpack Buddies. This charity was started by two women to help fill the weekend hunger gap for Vancouver kids in need. We went around the room in a circuit with people doing different jobs to hustle through packing. It was a lot of fun and it brought us together. Love to see more of this from other brands. See more at #GiveWhereWeLive.
We packed 200 bags for Backpack Buddies and Telus donated $10,000!
If you’re building an influencer team or already have relationships, remember they’re good at what they do because they have experience. They work with multiple brands, agencies, timelines. You don’t need to get super specific but asking questions is a great idea. What do they like about other programs? Do they have ideas on how to make things better, faster, smoother? How could we use technology to tell stories in a different way? Asking questions helps you learn and when you learn you have more ideas, and everything gets better.
Telus Vancouver dinner and the day I first wore my fav dress.
Bring Them In
I love learning about a program while it’s still in development and giving feedback or sharing a related experience. I usually have a different perspective and turn it on its head. Last year, Telus brought a few of us in to ask about a new program they’re thinking about and while we were in Vancouver we talked a lot about Telus programs and the future. It’s great to hear about what the company is doing, planning, how you can work together.
You know what all content creator influencer people have in common? They all like to make things, create things. A lot of them even like the camera. ? Make stuff with them!
Telus had each of into Telus Vancouver Studio (inside their building) to shoot some fun stuff on camera. They planned it out well, has scripts, full crew, and we each took turns for private studio time. It was fun and now they have a whole bunch of fresh-faced content.
Last year before Mother’s & Father’s Day Telus had a bunch of us come to the Toronto office and shoot us talking about gadgets & gift ideas. We also called our parents to ask about their favourite present we ever gave them. You will laugh at mine because I was born on Mother’s Day and like, what is a better gift than THAT!? ?
Learn & Grow
Through building relationships, coming together, and asking questions, you learn a lot about people, marketing, and what works best. Your program should be agile and change with the times, the content, technology, the people. New feature on IG or app to make something cool, try it. Find a great new creator, reach out to them. Someone not posting as much as they used to bc they just aren’t really into it, cool no problem, work with that or move on.
You need to be constantly innovating or you will be left behind. Innovate or die.
Finally, this goes without saying at this point, if you’re working on all this stuff with someone or a group of people, you should pay them for their time and expertise. It can be cash (cheques are good) or in-kind (must have great value) but please recognize the immensely unique perspective and value someone of this nature can bring to your program or organization.
Sidenote, Vancouver is really beautiful. Especially in the summer!
How to Build a Great Influencer Program
Give Where You Live
Bring Them In
Learn & Grow
I love working with Telus as you can tell from this post.
Check out some of my other stories over the years here. 💚
I look forward to Prime Day each summer! I bought my first Instant Pot on Prime Day years ago and I’ve been obsessed ever since. If you’re an Aeroplan Member, you can earn you 5x the Aeroplan Miles on Prime Day this year. Think about that for a hot second, get amazing deals AND rack up those miles!
I’ve been earning Miles w/ Aeroplan as long as I can remember because mum was keen on getting any help we could in order to visit the fam back in New Zealand. I really love Amazon Deals and Amazon, in general, it’s such a great addition to life. An easy way to get just about anything sent to you in a day or two. If you don’t have a Prime Membership, sign up here. I love the future!
Amazon Prime + Aeroplan Details
WHAT IS AMAZON PRIME? The basic benefits of being a prime member are FREE 2-day shipping, access to Prime Video (Man in the High Castle, Mozart in the Jungle Transparent), access to Prime Music, AND special deals on Prime Day! There are over 100,000 deals across heaps of categories like electronics, fashion housewares, and more.
Using the search function on the page, find Amazon.ca
Enter your Aeroplan number and last name
Click on the ‘Shop Now’ button to be redirected to Amazon.ca.
GET ALL THE DEALS. Happy shopping!
The Aeroplan eStore promotion starts on Prime Day and lasts until July 18th.
Prime Day starts at 3pm ET on Monday, July 16
This week is an exciting one, today is Prime Day, tomorrow I’m back at Sassoon Toronto and will be announcing a REALLY GREAT makeover giveaway, then Wednesday I’m off to Portugal #withAeroplan for almost 2 weeks. What a time to be online!
This post is sponsored by Aeroplan as part of my ongoing partnership. Make sure you tune in next week because I'm off to PORTUGAL#withAeroplan!
Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend a dreamy weekend driving around in a 2017 Porsche Boxster GTS. This car is INCREDIBlE. I drove all over the place, taking friends to run errands, back and forth to get groceries, from Scarborough to the far West, and all over downtown. I’ve never owned a car and I’ve joked since I was a kid that my first car would be a Porsche, well, there’s still time!
Suits me, right?
Cool thing about this car is that the engine is right behind the 2 seats so there are two trunks, front and back. You can fit groceries and your weekend bag but only one friend at a time, it’s perfect. 😜I took Embot around for a drive listening to music and felt like the coolest step-mama ever.
It’s got amazing handling for city or highway. It is also VERY fast, not that I was speeding ever at all. The roof is fully automatic and pretty fast, you can put it down to take the top off while stopped at a traffic light. It’s pretty good on gas but you have to put premium, however nothing compares to the beautiful German engineering of a Porsche. My dad was v jealous!
Porsche is celebrating 70 Years, (HBD!), and tonight they’re hosting an event. I would love to work on this relationship so I can drive more and more cars for the media fleet, that way, when I buy my very own, I really know what I want! Ha! I’m serious. They gave a few media peeps the opportunity to drive cars. I booked this drop top baby a few months ago and waited patiently for the day I could pick it up.
Thank you Porsche Canada! ILYYYYYY!
As I sadly returned the Boxter, I saw this BRIGHT yellow Carrera and thought, that would look good on me! Maybe next time?!
Disclosure: Porsche Canada gave me the car to test drive for the weekend but I said that already!
A couple weeks ago I was invited to Telus Toronto to share some of my Pride memories. I’ve been going to the parade since I was a teenager. Dad took my sister for our first time when we were in high school. It’s been a place for positive self-expression, to celebrate, to join friends for their first Pride after coming out, or to remember friends who have past. Every year we get together to share love, joy, and friendship while dancing in the street together.
Thank you, Telus for having me in to share what PRIDE means to me. I am so proud and glad to work with a company that supports diversity, LGBTQ, and gives back in communities across the country. This weekend I’ll be walking in the parade with Telus. I love being there and feeling the happy energy flying all around.
Sending you sunshine and I hope to see some of you at PRIDE!
I love Twitter, I have since the day I joined over 10 years ago. It’s still my favourite social media platform, it’s the place news breaks and where you want to be when live events happen around the world. Thanks to Twitter, I’ve been able to share my voice, meet like-minded people, and build life-long relationships. I love sharing random thoughts, photos, links to things I read and write, and getting the latest news.
“When something happens in the world, it happens first on Twitter” @KayMadati, Head of Content at Twitter
If you’re not familiar with the term ‘Upfronts” it comes from TV and has to do with advertising. The Twitter Fronts are a chance for agencies, brands, and advertisers to see what options are available for branded content and partnerships.
Upfronts: In the television industry, an upfront is a gathering at the start of important advertising sales periods, held by television network executives and attended by major advertisers and the media. [Wikipedia]
According to the source, Twitter users are engaged, affluent, and educated. They want to make sure brand partnerships have contextual relevance, they have to make sense, and be mutually beneficial relationships.
They’re bringing exclusive partnerships for live content straight to Twitter to leverage their storytelling capabilities. We’re talking Buzzfeed, BNN, Corus, sports, BetaKit for tech, and a new media centre for brands who want to create live content. They’ve got everything covered, #onedirtydish will feature your fav chefs,
This year, for the first time the MMVAs will be broadcast live on Twitter, the show AND the red carpet. This is huge! I was the social media manager for the show when I worked there back in 2010. It was a dream of mine to see the show live on Twitter, although video wasn’t introduced on the platform until 2015 and there definitely wasn’t a ‘live’ option.
BuzzFeed’s AM2DM is a weekday show at 10am with all the latest entertainment. Canada’s managing editor said they’re bringing ‘next level conversations’ and I am here for it.
Twitter is also working with brands to create bespoke content. They’re breaking down what relevance means and making sure content is reaching the right people. Check out Producer, Twitter advanced brand tool for live broadcasts.
I’m excited to see all this roll out. Gone are the days when we need cable TV, the future is INTERNET!
I was so looking forward to being in the city this weekend. We’ve been away for almost every weekend since March! I got a few things done around the house and took some good time to fully relax. It feels great! We all need days like this.
After watching The Wedding on Saturday at Windsor Arms, I came home, changed into sweatpants, sat on my bed, opened my computer, and set up my iPad. It was the perfect day to chill. Tbh, I love sitting at home, quietly, on the couch or in my bed.
I’ve got a great little setup using a small table I made last year. I originally found it on Etsy but was crazy expensive on Etsy so I made it myself! It’s great it for sitting or working in bed, and as a footrest at the desk. For my mouse, I use a book or a marble board I got at The Drake General Store.
The rest of the weekend I watched The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon Video (good show!) and caught up on the Y&R. Drove to the beach with Sean. Hung out with some friends in Trinity Bellwoods. Did some fireworks, played with sparklers. It was the perfect city weekend!
This week I’m in Vancouver with #TeamTelus. I can’t wait! We’ve got 2 days of activities with the Canada-wide Telus influencer gang. Most of us are staying at the beautiful Westin Bayshore, the view looks amazing.
My flight is super early so I arrive with plenty of time to explore before we all meet up for dinner. As usual, I’m leaving packing to the last minute!
Here’s to a great week.
☀️ Sending you sunshine! ☀️
Over the past couple years, I’ve attended FITC in Toronto and highly recommend it. I’m not shy about my love for emerging tech and welcome any opportunity to see what’s new, learn from innovators, and get my hands on the latest gadgets. If you love that stuff too, you should GET A TICKET NOW. Use code FITCCASIE for a 20% discount. Tell your boss you need to go for professional development.
FITC is a hub for creatives and stands for Future, Innovation, Technology, Creativity. My first FITC was in 2011 and I was blown away by all the cool stuff I saw. It’s amazing to think about how technology has changed since then.
Last year I was walking around showing off my Snapchat glasses and this year nobody really uses the app anymore. I love tech because it moves so fast and it always changing. I’m writing this to you from the tech centre of the world in San Francisco, California. 🌁 Since 2012 FITC has held events all around the world bringing people like-minded people together to embrace design and technology.
FITC: The Technology & Creativity Conference
What to See at FITC Toronto 2018
Here’s a few things I picked I’ve added to my schedule. You can make yours on the website. The list of speakers is great and there’s heaps to learn. Something I really like about the website is for each session they detail an overview, objective, target audience, and 5 things the audience will learn. This helps you maximize your conference experience based on your own personal interest and desire to learn.
One of my fav things last year was the lounges set up for chatting and relaxing between sessions, one had mini massages and essential oil, another had bean bag chairs and beer. They have everything!
Wondering who attends? All kinds of people including a couple well-known companies you *might* have heard of. It’s a great place to meet people, network, and be inspired.
I would love to meet you there and attend sessions together/catch up. Use my code FITCCASIE for a 20% discount and LMK when you get a ticket.
Watch the 2017 FITC Highlight Reel
This post is in partnership with FITC. FITC produces design and technology events worldwide which inspire, educate and challenge attendees. Since 2002, FITC has brought together like-minded professionals and students in Toronto, Amsterdam, Tokyo, San Francisco, Chicago, Seoul, New York, Los Angeles and many other cities.
Last week I attended a Women in Tech Panel hosted by Booking.com to kick of March which includes International Women’s Day. It was nice to see some of my fav ladies and be inspired by powerful women on the panel. The panel included: Melissa Sariffodeen, CEO & Co-founder of Canada Learning Code; Helen Papagiannis, Ph.D, a world-leading expert in the field of Augmented Reality; Huda Idrees, the founder and CEO of Dot Health; and Ioana Popa, Strategy Manager at Booking.com. It was refreshing to hear their stories of creating new things, fighting stereotypes, and career struggles.
This year, Booking.com is honouring International Women’s Day with a month-long series of events in partnership with Canada Learning Code.
I’m quite familiar with Canada Learning Code, it was Ladies Learning Code was founded by some awesome Toronto Women. Since 2011, LLC has had over 17,500 participants and held over 600 events. The organization is dedicated to ensuring all Canadians – particularly woman and girls – are given equal opportunity to access education in tech, a field still mostly run by men. Yes, ladies!
Booking.com has a two-part Ladies Learning Code workshop on March 21st and 28th. For $65, you’ll learn basic coding skills and build your own website in a positive and encouraging environment. It’s totally a-ok if you aren’t a code whiz, this workshop is perfect for beginners.
There’s more! Everyone who takes part in the workshop is has a chance to win a $500 Booking.com travel credit which can be used at any of the 1.6 million properties available on the site. PLUS, you’ll receive a professional one-hour mentorship session with a top female tech leader at Booking.com. Props if you get to chat with my friend Carolyn Van!
“Connecting with strong female role models is crucial to help women advance their careers, especially in the tech industry. Our recent research revealed that 90% of female respondents would be inspired to chase their dreams just by seeing more women in leadership roles,” says Gillian Tans, Booking.com’s CEO. “Booking.com explores female mentorship opportunities wherever we can so that we can continue to support women to progress and excel in their careers.”
The workshop is presented by Booking.com and the title partner is my BFF Telus. Both companies are committed to encouraging women in tech and it’s my pleasure to work with them both. Thank you for supporting us!
This post is in partnership with Booking.com and in line with my goals of female empowerment in tech. Booking.com is dedicated to providing women around the world with the tools they need to succeed in the tech industry. From the inaugural Booking.com Technology Playmaker Awards, to Women in Technology scholarships at the University of Oxford and the Delft University of Technology, to now partnering with Ladies Learning Code on coding workshops in Toronto, the company is working harder than ever to empower women around the world to achieve their digital dreams. Learn more here.
Mum and I arrived in New Zealand earlier this week and the flight was pretty great. I was a little nervous about driving in NZ on the other side of the road with a right-hand drive car but it was totally ok.
I was super alert after sleeping half of the flight from San Francisco to Auckland.
NOT A GOOD TRAVEL PILLOW
Everyone knows the travel pillows below but they’re bulky, not that stylish, and don’t really hold up your head.
Well, do I have the best travel accessory ever for you!
I ordered the Trtl pillow from Amazon and when mum came over before we left, she was like “ok I need one of these too”. So now I have ordered two. It was an absolute lifesaver for the journey here. It wraps around your neck like a scarf and the plastic bit under the cover holds your head up. I slept 5 hours on the 11-hour flight, incredible!
Here we go!
Best travel pillow!
Long flight but refreshed
I picked up a few other things for this trip and they’ve already come in super handy. We’re in Auckland this week and driving up to the Coromandel Peninsula tomorrow to spend some time at the beach with some family on my dad’s side. I love it here so much.
Last weekend on my way home from New Orleans I popped into the Iris Photobooth at the MSY Airport. I’d seen these booths on the internet and really wanted to give it a try. I thought the company was owned by LinkedIn but I have since learned it is not. The pop-up headshot station is marketed to LinkedIn users for new profile photos. Amazing idea if you ask me. However, you may want to use the services of a photographer who specializes in headshot photography instead.
Photos are $20 for 6 photos including retouching and you get 1 hi-res download. I unlocked the remaining 5 for $5. I also did 2 sessions because I love having my photo taken! ?
I think the photos turned out really good despite the fact that my hair wasn’t done, I did my makeup in the car, and had rushed to the airport. The lighting is super bright, almost better than a human headshot setup. (Sorry photographers, the robots are coming!) You can edit the photos right in the booth before saving in a FaceTune kinda way (smoothing, remove blemishes, whiten teeth etc).
If you’re looking to get some new photos done in Toronto there’s a booth at Ryerson near YD Square or you can catch them at airports around the USA. See locations here. I would love to be able to book it for a day at our office. I think I’ll pop into the Ryerson one next time I’m on the area. I had been meaning to get a couple photos for ages and this was SO EASY.
OK THAT’S ALL FOR TODAY OFF TO GET MY HAIR DONE BYE!
Did you buy any stuff today? I’ve been out and about around New Orleans but I’m back in my apartment to check on and share a few deals before the day is done. Last week for Black Friday I ordered a new Instant Pot from Amazon and an Echo Dot. I’ve been obsessed with the Instant Post since we got one last year for Christmas and I use it a couple times a week.
Today kicks off Social Media Week in Toronto. I’ve been part of it every year since it started, in some capacity. This year I’m on the SMTWO Advisory Board for my second year and speaking on a panel Wednesday. It is truly amazing to be part of an industry that has grown and developed SO MUCH the last 10 years.
I could go on an on about how special the start of it was and how there were so few people. Back then, the role of Community Manager didn’t exist, we couldn’t’ schedule updates, there were no analytics, no budgets, and advertising was few and far between.
Back then people had influence, we called them leaders. Fearless self-starters who took chances, tried new things and did things differently. We followed to see what they would do next. Influence came from their work and the impact it had on others, not just followers.
Things have really changed and they continue to change. This is what makes Social Media Week such an important event for our growing industry. Every year the topics are different and there’s new platforms, policies, and processes to discuss. For the past couple months, I’ve been tweeting ‘NEW THINGS EVERY DAY‘ almost daily when a new feature is added to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat. It’s a challenging space to work in because your tools and the entire drawing board are always changing.
#SMWTO has TONS of cool things, here are a few of my favourites!
On a rainy day last week I was almost late to pick Embot up from daycare so we decided to go for burgers and test out Prodigy Game. Em spent hours playing over the next few days. In that time she created an avatar for herself, explored Prodigy Game’s world, enhanced her math skills and even described it as ‘really fun.’
Prodigy is a free math game with over 20 million students, teachers, and parents using it worldwide. It combines gaming and education for students in grades 1-8, alleviates math anxiety and teaches valuable math skills aligned with the student’s curriculum at school.
I wasn’t very good at math in high school and did summer school or night school every year until I graduated. Safe to say I’ve always been on the highly creative side. It’s important to work on these skills as a kid so you’re equipped with the tools you need to excel in the future. Last year, our provincial government implemented a $60-million math strategy, but math scores in Ontario are still low with half of Grade 6 students not meeting the provincial standard. Prodigy Game addresses that major issue in our education system and helps students tackle – and beat – their math anxieties.
Emily doesn’t mind math but she reallllllly loves her iPad. Legit this kid could watch videos all day of people making slime or doing funny challenges on YouTube. I was so glad to see her using it to play an educational game, by choice. Parenting WIN.
Em was on Level 3 when 2 kids about her age passed by and saw her playing. The younger one said “She’s playing Prodigy” and her older brother said “I’m on level 77.” Ok, this is good. He mentioned that his teacher uses Prodigy Game in their class. I wish there was tech like this when I was a kid!
A cool feature of the game is the ability to create a parent account. You can check in on how your child is doing, where they excel and where they are having challenges.
A couple weeks ago I sat down with Stacey from Toronto based production studio Incite Creative Media, to have a candid chat about influencer marketing and how it really works. It works well with small business software as well! I think there are a lot of misconceptions about this whole new world of social media/influencer/brand partnerships so I shared some things I’ve learned over the years.
Stacey asked me a few more questions than you’ll find in this video so please LMK if you want to see more. I love talking about this stuff and think that’s the only way to build a better industry.
If you have any questions I’d love to know! Comments are open!
Ever wondered where to start with Influencer Marketing? Well today we’ve got you covered with 6 insights from Toronto blogger + influencer Casie Stewart. From where to find them, to what you can expect to pay – it’s all here. Enjoy friends! – Incite Creative Media
We shot this at my fav local spot in the Junction Triangle (where I live), Drake Commissary. They have amazing food and the entire atmosphere is trés chic. Very Drake. I highly recommend the tomato salad, miso cauliflower, sweet potato walnut loaf, and the Sterling Road Tiramisu.