Davina Brewer @3hats
I blog, I comment, I stalk the Interwebs all while pretending to do some marketing, public relations, social media 'work.' Likes: wine, travel, food, friends. Dislikes: bullshit. Misses: naps.
This list drills down to one thing: you're not really social. That's why you ignore and delete, that's why you only broadcast and hype your own brand, that's why you sell, sell, sell but never listen to your customers, don't bother to make real connections. Per Clay's comment, success in SM will all depend on goals. If all a brand is interested in is dumping a sales pitch message out there, then by all means broadcast away. But a broadcast in and of itself doesn't always reach an audience, doesn't connect, certainly doesn't influence or prompt action.
To do that, you need true communication, both directions. For companies that ROI is more than a quick sale -- they're about building a sustainable brand, a reputation as a quality company, about being a better business -- that means being (not doing) social. Reducing SM to a stripped down advertising channel or customer service center not only taints the waters of fans and followers, it limits the brand to what it can really do. FWIW.
2 days ago on Conversation @ http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/231912
The last few RFPs I read, I was like - I've got the smarts, know what to do, can assemble the team - but the process seemed rigged for big game. The red tape, the insurance requirements, everything seemed too out of scale with what a small or independent consultant can affordably do. Shame, think companies hurt themselves limiting their options this way.
I won't say NEVER, instead it's risk vs. reward. If it's a case like @HeatherWhaling and it's 1) a brand I'd love to work with on 2) a project I'd rock and 3) am very much in the running to earn the biz.. I'd consider a reply that I'm comfortable putting on the table. FWIW.
1 week, 3 days ago on Why I’m done with RFPs (for now)
This, this, this. Those three quotes from the reporters pretty much explain why, though I may follow and engage on social, I've always pitched via email. Along w/ the exclusivity piece and trying to make the pitch less ad, more newsworthy - it's the customization. Each reporter, each media outlet wants their take, wants to do a story unique for their audience. To do it right, you're going to repackage a story differently almost every time so it's simply best to stick with email. And yes, they got - no need to follow up 27 times in 3 days. FWIW.
1 week, 4 days ago on Do Journalists Prefer Contact through Social Media or Email?
Brian, Brian, Brian.. gonna duck some flying tomatoes a bit, 'defend' this crappy so-called PR firm a bit. To be clear: their "look it up your damn self" response was really bad, types the woman who has sent LMGTFY links. Worse is their claim of doing PR - not. They are a publicity firm from what I can tell, nothing more. They consider it successful performance if they get a blurb in the Cook County Shoppers Guide or a 2-inch link blip on any website w/ an Alexa ranking better than mine (which is pretty much, all of them). They get you in Gun and Garden monthly, they consider it a win.
A true PR firm would also 'sell' you as author. A real PR firm would recognize that you're more interested in marketing/sales than biz communications, than branding, and would plan accordingly. Why only target prestige press? Why not target book bloggers, influencers who run independent-author-only book clubs? Why not forums, communities of people who watch TV procedurals, maybe like to read that genre? See.. that builds following, readership, WoM.. which then yes gets sales which catches eye of big name list makers.
My other quibble from the NEW COKE side of the room. I've done wonderful work over the years, just smart and clever, did a great job 'selling.' But alas people weren't buying and that had nothing to do w/ the campaigns, the strategies, the PR. Nothing. There is an elusive X factor special sauce DNA gene when it comes to selling, a reason I love those power scenes in GGGR but I ain't got it. It's a key metric of course.. but I'm PR and I don't 'do' sales. FWIW.
2 weeks, 4 days ago on PR Firm Almost Lands New Client
This is at the core of what I learned, have tried to do. Integrated organizational communications.. it is PR, it is business. So many key publics impact the bottom line, have no contact w/ marketing/sales depts. It's HR, CRM, R&D, IR etc working together .. enough w/ silos and this exec b.s.
Your "SM cop" is perfect example, policing employees instead of motivating them. It's the newsletter rant I'll write someday, when the front page is some meaningless 'letter from the CEO' no one will read. (Hint, WIIFM: unless you're firing them or giving them a raise, the rank and file employees doing the actual work don't really care that much.) Why not have the building engineer who really likes his job, the company on the blog? Why not open up the newsletter to feedback - even negative - and gain insights, discover new opportunities? You'll be a stronger company, earn the respect and loyalty of your employees - and build some 'savings' for that rainy day. FWIW.
3 weeks, 2 days ago on Internal Communications Lessons from a PayPal Fiasco
This is made of so much win, it ought to be criminal. Hilarious! Love.
3 weeks, 5 days ago on Follow Monday: Say Happy Birthday to Gini Dietrich!
@Soulati | Hybrid PR I actually did apply years ago at WDW, but for the limited PR/corp dept. I'm not a good fit. And last year I sent an ambitious, out of the box cover letter (read: outspoken blog post) for a SM gig w/ Carnival - crickets. Part of the problem is my lackluster resume (a priority for a major overhaul; see also my website that I've been saying the same of for years). But the real issue is companies like that, they get job apps by the thousands. A day. You need an IN to put your name on a short list of 5 to have even a shot at a chance. And those people already get netWORKED to death, so what's a girl to do?!
My site isn't built for travel blogging; that's not the audience I have/want.. would not dare enter that already way, way overcrowded market sector. And remember, I'm talking the backend, the corp side not front line service. I'm talking doing what I do, bringing my style of PR/Comms to the exec table, the biz. It's the sector I like b/c I like food and wine, travel and vacations; but the biz of PR/Comm is still kinda the same if that makes sense.
So... that's what I've been doing lately, typing rambling blog comments. You? Hope all is good in your neck of the woods. :)
1 month ago on 10 Steps Using Social Media For Business Development
"If you ignore Twitter, it ignores you." True, very true. Flipside, if your target is ignoring you and Twitter, and people who know your target are ignoring.... all by way of saying if the fish ain't biting, go to other waters. This is what many need, esp. the DIY small business owner/manager who doesn't have the capital to invest, this plan to work - which all starts w/ developing a smart plan that's about earning work. That said, why can't I stalk Disney or Carnival? ;-) FWIW.
I have these thoughts.. esp. when I see people say and write one thing when they think, do another. I think authenticity and voice matter, as do goals and strategy. But when the goals are eyeballs and clicks to get social cred and vanity metrics that'll somehow turn into a payday b/c that's how the game is played - IDK, I think some tend to throw caution to the wind and go for it. It's a job after all.
I don't look at my GA that often -- very bad of me. I also don't worry so much about those referrers and keywords when in reality, I should. Doesn't mean I'd change my voice or personality. I do that now in so much as when I do post, it's out of obligation, it's from thinking 'hmm, what would a SMB owner be searching? would this get me the reader that connects me to my dream job?' And my lack of ROI is why (as I was just telling @CraigMcBreen) I'm on/off the blogging wagon these days.
Bringing it back to the GA-- it's not just authenticity you risk if you write ONLY for that; it's reach, it's audience, it's opportunity. My problem has always been the battle of writing for the audience I have (insiders mostly, no one doing the hiring, a few tire kickers) vs. the ones I want (those outside the echoblogochambershere, those hiring, not so small budgeted SMBs, and esp. a few major brands looking to shake things up). So if you focus only on what's already bringing clicks and eyeballs, don't you risk losing everyone else? don't you limit yourself to thinking that's why and what got people there, when it could be something else? And so on. Like everything else, the tools and data are meant to support, to aid not to drive, not to lead; you manage the tools, you don't let them manage you. FWIW.
1 month ago on Authenticity On The Path To Professional Blogging
@KenMueller @finecraftliving "We" - emphasis on the air quotes - are all just so sure, so certain that our thoughts and beliefs are absolute, are the right ones. If we think a certain thought or opinion is wrong or offensive, then it must be! And the person who dared think it and voice it and post it must be of the devil! And flogged from the free and tolerant interwebs we protect for puppies and kitties everywhere, now!! Ahem.
1 month ago on Dear Coke: Stop Making Waves!
H/t for having the guts to put this out there. I didn't spend too much time on my streams yesterday, but now that I've done a quick scan.. egads. Everything from this to serious, hate fervor (on both sides) to 'I liked it, unfollow me or shut it' and all things in between. I don't get political, I avoid any such 'controversy' as best I can for this exact reason, b/c you and @finecraftliving have it exactly right. It's a shame we can't be ourselves w/out judgement, that we have to watch and filter b/c it seems everyone is open to having hundreds of friends and thousands of followers - provided they think just like you. As to the ad itself.. I have an opinion, more than one actually. That I'm gonna keep to myself. ;-) FWIW
I ended up not watching much of the game, nor seeing many commercials. I do fall for the sappy cuddly animals sometimes, can't help it. I'm cynical of anything that's all 'home, apple pie, soldiers, USA rah' manipulation, so yeah ... when it's for one of those "American" brands that's not made/owned in America, I just cringe. (IIRC didn't Chrysler make similar mistakes in the last few years?) I liked the VW angel wings spot but like many people I didn't think the ads all that remarkable or memorable considering the price tag, nothing to make me run out and buy. FWIW.
1 month ago on Gin and Topics: Special Super Bowl Edition
The Onion ran a post not too long ago - amazing tale of a man found the elusive work/life balance, got to exercise, cook, read, even see his family whilst getting a decent night's sleep. All it took was getting fired. :-)
Everyone is different. It's that not-so-simple. Some people Energizer bunny it, others not so much. Some businesses and jobs allow for such flexibility, many others require much more structure. What works for this organization or that person won't for others. People work to live, (to me) living means having time off and flexibility, maybe unplugging and taking more control of how and when and where they work. Alas that's not always the case, for every visionary business there are too many who can't figure out how to operate if everyone isn't there, in the office, M-F, 9-5 week in and out. Shame.
I'd love to work at the kind of company that really respected downtime as part of the process, that appreciated the work got done no matter if it was cranked out over a weekend or while I was on a workcation some sunny beach. So long as work was rewarding and stimulating, so long as I got my job done, that's what matters. FWIW.
1 month, 1 week ago on The Power of Time Off
It all starts with the first one. If you don't know your audience, you're not gonna understand them. If you don't get them and why they're there.. how can you set the right tone, energy? select the visuals that will compel them? How will you tell a relatable story? Etc etc. Can't make the webinar, shame b/c you're right - it's not just the large audience speaking, everything is a presentation... 'all the world's a stage' so we need to learn that skill. FWIW.
1 month, 2 weeks ago on 11 Deadly Presentation Sins
@Howie Goldfarb Short memory, ITA and it's a big part of this crisis discussion. I've written (and writing again) about brands being 'marketing proof' and part of that is being 'crisis proof' to the point that they may take a hit, but no they won't go under. BP is still here. Once upon a time people drove past Exxon and perhaps even dumped the stock, yet look at them today. People need gas and oil, they want strong investments that make money and yes, some of them like chicken.
2 months, 2 weeks ago on Crisis Communications: How Chick-fil-A Weathered the Storm
@RobBiesenbach @Rieva @HowieGoldfarb @FranchiseKing @ClayMorgan I think that's it - it all comes down to how devout we are in our beliefs. It's not that we don't like X or really, really don't support Y or that we SAY we do -- it's how strongly we do in so much as we ACT and change our behaviors. And when it comes to our likes and dislikes, what's convenient or cheap or easy or our personal wants and needs, those beliefs often take a back seat when voting w/ wallet or stock portfolio or car full of hungry kids.
I'm in Atlanta, CFA backyard. Can't think of a single person I know that stopped going or even voiced any opinion as to the religious/political 'crisis.' Yes CFA has its following and yes they did certain things well from a comms standpoint. But I don't think nearly as many people kept going to CFA to 'vote by wallet' in support of the company or its political/religious views. IMO they kept going (perhaps in spite of those views?) b/c they like CFA sandwiches, lemonade, and service. FWIW.
Lots of good points here, can't really do much better. Big or small, I think you're right @ginidietrich - the agencies that evolve, that integrate and get a better handle of who and how and WHY customers behave, shop and buy the way they do, they'll be the ones to come out ahead. And yes that starts w/ data, metrics, w/ creativity, knowing where digital meets the traditional road; and then showing what they're really worth.
To that end are my thoughts. Like many other comments, the 'way it's always been done,' the powers that be (CMOs and their bosses too) circling the wagons. It's that "we're not changing the product/service/brand - and you're just PR, so what do you know of R&D or HR or anything? Fix the bad reviews and negative comments, get us some happy buzz and sales" attitude. When you're asking for the social meets winning ads meets content driven meets data optimized integrated agency to prove results – but they don't have any genuine influence on the business/brand itself – that old school mindset that silos Communications is as big a part of the problem. I guess my meandering point is: as we evolve, we need to show TPTB we do more than tell/sell good stories, we help build better brands and stronger companies. FWIW.
2 months, 4 weeks ago on Agencies Must Evolve or Die
@sydcon_mktg I'll let you know if/when I get to test the bands. I too think it'll add to my visit, but then.. I'm a planner (as you wrote a lot of folks like to go w/ the flow and not have to pre-plan their whole trip). Sadly don't have a trip in mind, but hopefully soon. :-)
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Experiencing Disney via new technology utilizing apps while traveling
@ginidietrich I wasn't saying you have this attitude, nor was I attacking this well-intentioned blog. Of course this was a mistake and of course brands, large and small, can learn from it.
I was speaking in general about the hype machine, seemingly every time this kind of thing happens. I live and work w/ many who aren't in the biz or 'social.' But they are online, they read and watch the news. You can talk about X mistake or Y disaster, they've never heard of it. Or if they have, they shrug it off and keep buying/shopping/watching what they want - sometimes as wary of the media pile-on as I. FWIW.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Home Depot Crisis: Social Media Requires Being Human
I have a couple of the WDW apps on my phone, they are helpful and smart planning for Disney. Wait times; maps; show schedules, dining reservations. -- We're moving to a 'self service' culture and many of us just as soon let our fingers do the tapping vs. having to spend time dealing w/ a person. Know some others who got to test these wrist bands, they liked the features. And I know, reading message boards, that many Disney faithful are UNthrilled by this latest change. Esp. w/ FP+. As someone who's unlikely to pay the $$ for ON property (and believe me, we could debate that 'value' all day) it's another of those exclusives that split the haves vs. the have nots. shrug.
I could go on and on w/ my Disney likes and dislikes, but in the end they're gonna do what they do. TPTB are moving forward w/ what they think will make a better overall experience -- and of course, what's in their own best interest (support and staffing expenses, tracking, logistics, you know there's a lot in the plus column here). I will say this - you and I probably both agree that Disney requires planning and guests that don't likely have the lowest satisfaction. I think they've done their homework; Disney gets that 1) as stated, we are an app and iToy using society and 2) technology can be designed to improve guest experience, service. FWIW.