Ipsos i-Say Review

I wrote this Ipsos i-Say post for Ipsos, but all opinions are 100% mine.

Last Updated: November 11, 2020


Ipsos i-Say: Why You Should Get Rewarded for Your Opinion!

“They couldn’t influence their way out of a wet paper bag.”

— words once uttered by a wise blogger friend on those who believe they have influence versus actual influencers

Despite overwhelming evidence of prizes available to those who have opinions and package them in the right way, too many of us still spend our time giving away something for nothing.

Our opinions should hold value—we all know at least one thing no one else does. They’re a key thing that separates us from the crowd, but in this age of oversharing we’ve somehow convinced ourselves that the power of our thoughts is but a fleeting thing… that no idea’s original and we lack the individual power to make any real change in this world.

And that’s where I’d tell you you’re completely wrong, and that the time to think about what even the thoughts that seem the most innocuous can do for you is long overdue.

Which is exactly why you should join the Ipsos i-Say online survey rewards community and share your opinion for some awesome prizes!

THE GREAT SOCIAL MEDIA STORY: NEVER Forget the Fun!!!

I’d been lying to myself all along.

I’ve been stuck in a rut for who knows how long, and it’s been getting harder to hide. My blogs grow increasingly critical of the blogging industry around me; I find it harder to put a solid post together now than in times past; and I just feel like I’m dragging my heels, lethargic and unable to keep up with my peers that are doing some fantastic things. I even spoke with a friend about whether I’d already peaked and now faced what looked to be a life of utter normalcy.

Turns out I was just looking at my life all wrong.

The Missing Ingredient

July 15th marked my 30th birthday, and I was happy to mark it with a few changes:

  • After years of badgering by family and friends, I finally got my driver’s licence — and in style, behind the wheel of a 2011 Ford Edge Select, which I’ve enjoyed taking for spins around Toronto so far
  • I held my second annual DoomzDay birthday party on the 19th, and while the night ended less than optimally by losing my wallet and testing my tolerance for tequila (yet again), I was surrounded by family and friends as I prepared to take one of the most significant leaps of my life in only a handful of months
  • I heard the stories of other 30-year-olds still living with their parents and working minimum-wage jobs, feeling blessed to have a steady job, be in a healthy marriage, own property and readying myself for the magical challenge journey of fatherhood

I’m known for my luck, and there’s a lot of good in my life — so why did I feel like I was all out of steam with nothing left to give?

It wouldn’t come to me until I started reading Gary Vaynerchuk’s Crush It!, which Sarah gave me as part of my birthday gift. It was nothing new — it was a simple point that we’ve all known since forever, but dutifully ignore it to fit in. And that point is this: we do best when we do what we’re supposed to be doing. We’re all coded differently — we all have things we enjoy and things we dread; things we’re fantastic at and others we’ll suck at no matter how hard we try. And when you find the thing you’re born to do, and you pour your blood, sweat and tears into it — they say no matter how much you work at it, it doesn’t feel like work at all.

It feels like fun.

Everyone. Stop the presses! We’ve forgotten how to have FUN!!!

Why We Do Social Media Wrong. So Very, Very Wrong.

I remember being sad the day after DoomzDay that I didn’t have quite the turnout that I did last year. With a storm watch afoot following in the heels of Stormageddon 2013 and three-hour delay, it was enough to slice the attendance to half of what I’d anticipated. I’d put months into promotion, planning, developing a playlist, scouting locations — I wanted it to come off just right.

Does any of this sound fun to you? It’s supposed to be a celebration — how’s stressing over every little detail going to make me enjoy my party any more?

And that’s only the beginning — let’s take a look at social media in general.

These past few years, I’ve been privy to numerous opportunities because of social media and my blogging. I’ve been to Vegas. Twice. I got a press pass to Toronto Pride, snapping pics of people like Keisha Chanté and Corey Hart up close and personal. I’ve stood on the court of the Air Canada Centre and eaten at more places than I can remember.

So much happened, and all people asked of me was to write about it. Take photos. Spread the word on social media. Which all works… for a while.

It doesn’t take long before you start figuring out who the “big names” are in the industry and start getting a taste of the green-eyed monster as you look at their lives:

“They got a free trip to where?”

“They got to drive what?”

Who gave them a free which?!”

And it’s not long before that envy turns ugly, with those feelings showing up in the conversations you have with your peers:

They don’t deserve that. They don’t even fit the image of what that brand should be looking for!”

I’m good at what I do — why don’t they pick me?”

“I heard they had to do this and this to get that and that!”

The lessons we learned about envy, gossip, grudges and spite as kids are the same ones we learned as teens and the same ones that apply to us now:

  • When we wish ill on others, it only hurts ourselves
  • You never get ahead when you use all your energy worrying about someone else, and
  • When you spend so much time welling all that negativity up in yourself, you leave so little room for positivity and actually enjoying everything that life has to offer you.

So what does this all mean?

I’m 30. I’ve been building websites half my life and blogging for a third of it. I know the importance of SEO, promotion, good writing and robust multimedia. I know that you need to stay authentic to stay relevant.

But I also know how easy it is to lose your way. To forget why it is you do what you do. To get so caught up in the minutiae of what others say you need for a great blog, and forget that your blog is simply the best representation of you and what you offer to the world!

Happy Birthday, Mr. Palmer

I am not my content — my content is part of my story.

I’ll still look at things to review, read the books, try the food and go to all the places. I’ll try new things and find new ways to integrate all of them into my life.

But if I don’t remember to have fun while doing it, I haven’t learned a damn thing.

I’m going to worry less about the page views and more about the stories. Less about the Klout scores and more about the feelings. Less about how many comments I get, and more about whether the blogs I write energise me enough to write more. Because I haven’t peaked. I haven’t quit. This isn’t the end of my life’s road — I’m only just merging onto the highway.

Happy belated, Casey Palmer — welcome to the rest of your life.

HYFR and YOLO,

–case p.

To All The Haters

Sometimes you have some really challenging days. Not only was I trying to take care of business at the day job, working against insane deadlines that always seem to spring up out of nowhere. Not only was I running on fumes, trying to get every last bit of productivity out of myself, despite the odds.

No, what was really tiring me out is that the Mansformation haters were out in full swing.

Can You Like Me but Not My Ideas?

I love my friends — and a lot of the ones I interact with regularly on my Facebook are intelligent, well-versed, but strongly opinionated people. For example, here’s a look at the words exchanged over the Man Lessons I’ve been putting out and what they mean (excerpts minimized as to not make brains explode):

Did it bother me that I was getting so much criticism from my friends?

Sure.

Did I think that they had valid points in their arguments?

Of course.

However, without them having a complete understanding what Mansformation is all about, I don’t know if I’m prepared to give full merit to the arguments made against it.

What Mansformation’s All About

They say you should write what you know. This is what I know.

Casey Palmer is a twenty-something heterosexual man living in Toronto, Ontario. He’s made a lot of friends and seen a lot of places in his time, and through all this, he’s made his share of mistakes. Through a list of friends that’s 90% female or more, he’s seen the kinds of mistakes that men can make. He’s heard the stories. He’s witnessed the aftermath.

And now he’s ready to do something about it.

This is me. This is who I am. Who I am not is neither female nor homosexual. So while I can easily share the background and perspective of a heterosexual male in the Man Lessons I distribute every day, who am I to speak for three other major groups of people? I think I’d be far better off getting a representative from each group to speak to their experiences rather than be presumptuous enough to think that I have the knowledge or the right to do it on my own.

I get a lot of critiques that many of my Man Lessons apply to women as well. Here’s a basic reasoning of why: All life lessons are potential Man Lessons, but not all Man Lessons are life lessons. Yes, there will be lessons that apply to everyone on the face of this planet, but at the risk of beating a dead horse, my lifestyle and choices cannot possibly represent every possible iteration of human being on the planet.

So I speak to the types of human beings I can completely relate with — the straight men in various stages of their lives, trying to find love. Trying to be more fashionable. Trying to live the lives they desire and just can’t seem to figure out how to put all the pieces together.

Eventually I’d love to put a team together to tackle female issues. LGBTTIQQ2SA issues. Issues bounded by culture and geographical locations. These would all be amazing to tack, but the fact of the matter is this:

In order to effect change, you need to start somewhere.

So here’s to my haters, who inspired me to really think about why I’m doing this and reassure myself that I’m putting a service together that helps the world. A service that can help men be exactly who they want to be in a world that only grows more confusing with every passing day. If you think that I’m alienating populations, you’re more than welcome to write material catering to them, but I’m gonna keep doing what I’m doing.

Don’t bring me problems, bring me solutions. I’ve got mansforming to do.

–case p.