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I hear you Howard, but to take a given campaign and ask the PR team to brainstorm visual assets for the campaign isn't such a big project. It's more a case of PR pros being conditioned to think in terms of words when it comes to narrative.
1 week, 4 days ago on Six Digital Media and PR Lessons From 2013
Enjoyed the post Martin. While I agree with your point on transmedia storytelling, the concept can sometimes overwhelm the PR team. Simply embracing visual #storytelling and thinking in terms of visual assets can make for a good first step.
@LynnMcConaugheyThe question of morality in regards to an agency taking on a client is a tough one. As you put it, these things are rarely "black and white." One could argue that even Russia falls into the gray area.
We ran into a situation earlier in the year when an online company that facilitates infidelity approached our Asia Pacific team for PR support. Our AP head called me to say the management team had decided to take a pass. A check around the region showed no one was comfortable working for this company.
That's not a bad litmus test. If people who are intrinsically curious and always up for a challenge say "this doesn't feel right," it's probably not.
2 months, 1 week ago on Ketchum and the Putin OpEd Create Disclosure in Media Relations Debate
Gini, I agree with your broad point. But I also think it's
reasonable to hold journalists accountable for framing their stories
Rewinding the tape to the Burson whisper campaign on behalf of Facebook, yes the firm should have been transparent and shared the name
of the client. However, until Christopher
Soghoian posted his exchange with the BM rep on the Internet and Daily
Beast blogger at the time Dan Lyons connected the dots, many journalists used the same information from BM to write their stories ... without
the context of knowing who was footing the bill for BM’s work. I
suppose this dimension didn't get any play because laziness doesn't make
for good copy.
As a more recent example, the New
York Times ran a story a couple weeks ago called the "Boy Genius of Ulan
Bator." There's no question in my mind that MIT's communications team
placed this story as part of its thought leadership campaign around
MOOCs. For 99.9% of readers, they simply see a feel-good story (with the
MOOC "medicine" sugar coated). Would their impressions from the story
change if they knew MIT placed the story. Probably. At the very least,
the reader becomes guarded in absorbing the information.
@Frank_Strong One message I took away from the treatise is the inordinate emphasis Google puts on fresh content. I have noticed this but didn't put any thought into it until now. I thought my blog moving up from searches like [storytelling techniques] was a byproduct of gaining "authority" over time. In retrospect, it seems to be a benefit from new stuff.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Google to Clamp Down on Press Release Anchor Text
Enjoyed the post.
These brand studies are a little like the Mark Twain quote about "lies, damned lies and statistics." Naturally, companies package up selected pieces of information to put their best foot forward.
I also think the airline industry makes for an interesting petri dish when it comes to brand study. With limited choices for a given route -- plus how many airlines truly delight in the eyes of the customer -- I suspect there's more value in translating "familiarity" into sales in the airline industry.
I wrote a post last year on United called "The Worse Customer Service Narrative in the History of Branding" www.ishmaelscorner.com/2012/03/06/the-worst-customer-service-narrative-in-the-history-of-branding/ making the case that "putting that best foot forward' can be illusive.
3 months, 1 week ago on Delta: How the World’s Worst Brand can also Be the Best
Gini, Glad you wrote this post. Tom Foremski like many good journalists likes to provoke, but his track record as a prognosticator of the PR industry is a bit spotty. When the economic model of publishing started to crater Tom predicted doom for PR agencies with fewer people/publications to pitch. Fast forward to today and the opposite has happened.
I completely agree with your point- Google is doing us a favor. "It’s making us better" (though I'll miss those "cheap" links).
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Don’t Die PR Agencies! What the Recent Google Changes Really Mean
@Frank_Strong Now, I get it. Thanks.
4 months ago on Reading: Indie PR CEOs Frown on Omnicom-Publicis Merger
I suppose it's natural that independents would take the position that girth does not equal good.
Many of the media stories shared Gini's view that the scale would help the merged entity when it comes to the purchase of media from the Facebooks and Googles of the world. I must be dense because I don't get this point.
@martinwaxman Sorry about that. I suppose getting the first consonant right only takes me so far.
4 months, 2 weeks ago on Community Management is the New PR
@martinwaxman Mark, it's interesting that you used the word "humor." For the longest time, we tried to push clients toward the H word with mixed results. Since changing to "levity," our success rate has improved. The way one client explained to me, levity = amusement while humor = laughter which in turn makes the levity bar much lower (and less scary).
When I first read the holy grail is "community management" I'm thinking that's a leap worthy of Evel Knievel. Yet, you lay out a pragmatic road map for getting there.
I think there's a "killer app" in not only swearing off the corporate speak, but bringing levity to the table. Because this type of communications scares so many companies, there's even more of an opportunity to stand out.
Enjoyed the post Lindsay.
The effort that Spin Sucks puts into guest posting shows in the quality of writing/thinking that comes your way.
5 months, 1 week ago on The Top 10 Guest Blog Posts of 2013 (January – June)
Enjoyed your post Cameron.
Great to see HootSuite have the storytelling religion.
Your point about how we talk about our children is a keeper (I might "borrow" this one).
And you're right Red Bull is a poster child for the power of owned media. Actually, wrote a post on Red Bull a couple years ago www.ishmaelscorner.com/2011/06/16/revisiting-the-debate-on-paid-media-versus-owned-media/
6 months ago on Social Media and Storytelling Part 1: Why Storytelling?
Appreciate the pragmatic advice.
And somewhat encouraged to see the average time on my own blog is similar to Spin Sucks (I thought readers were just "fast" with me).
6 months, 2 weeks ago on Three Data Points to Measure Your Blog Efforts
@Howie Goldfarb That's a fair point though I think it's fair to say people gravitate towards people they like ... which brings us back to the chemistry variable.
7 months ago on Guide to Hiring a Digital Agency
I agree that chemistry should be part of the decision-making process. But figuring out chemistry through a few interactions can be a challenge. Everyone tends to be on their best behavior during a review process.
It still surprises me how few companies make onsite visits to their short listed agencies. Just through "sheer osmosis," you gain so many cues that play to the chemistry question.
Of course, sometimes this isn't practical, particularly when you're based in a different city that the agency. Still, I bet not even 10% of the companies kicking our tires build in an onsite component.
I think Laura hit the nail on the face with the "J" word.
It's easy to fall into the "jealous" trap. More than a cultural thing, seems like a human thing.
7 months ago on The Success Trap and Regrets of the Dying
You had me at "start drinking at 10 am."
Seriously, I enjoyed your post and appreciate the reminder to "love thy client."
7 months, 1 week ago on Mad Men: Ad Agency of the Future
Thinking on your last point, it is rather odd that properties like Mashable, TechCrunch, etc. haven't reported on Triberr.
But I'm not sure there's anything nefarious going on.
Packaging the Triberr story for mass consumption is not for the squeamish. As they say in the movies, "it's complicated." I like and use the platform, but am still figuring out the functionality myself.
Also, while I can appreciate getting the product right is all consuming for any new venture, the company might benefit from PR help (internal or external). We did a study a couple years ago that showed one if the first moves by any journalist considering a story is to search on [name of company + press room]. Doing this for Triberr doesn't lead to the company's press room. Perhaps the company doesn't have a press room.
It's possible that Triberr has made a conscious decision to depend grass-roots communications. After-all, the people using it are writers ... right? It just could be that underpinning such an approach with basic building blocks like a press room would amplify the grass-roots effort.
8 months, 3 weeks ago on Triberr: Blog Building for the Magic Middle