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Interviews

Tips on Pitching and Media Relations from Facebook’s Media Coach Bill McGowan

Bill-McGowan

Bill McGowan has held many titles throughout his career: journalist, “A Current Affair” reporter, author, founder and CEO of Clarity Media Group.

His most recent role is media coach for executives, celebrities and artists ranging from Kelly Clarkson and Eli Manning to Thomas Keller and Tim Gunn. He’s also worked with major firms to help PR professionals hone the art of the pitch.

Two of his most recent clients’ names might ring a bell: Sheryl Sandberg and Mark Zuckerberg.

In McGowan’s latest book Pitch Perfect: How to Say It Right the First Time, Every Time, he draws on decades of experience working both in front of and behind the camera to offer tips and tools on how to deliver a message efficiently and confidently.

We recently spoke to Bill to learn how that experience applies to PR.

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Mediabistro Course

Storytelling for Media Professionals

Storytelling for Media ProfessionalsStarting April 22, this in-person workshop will teach you the specific ways to incorporate storytelling into your personal and professional life. Students will examine the role of storytelling in business and put their newfound skills into practice with a series of improvisation, writing, and presentation exercises designed to help them uncover personal stories. Register now! 

More Tips for Avoiding and Containing Social Media Crises

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It’s only Tuesday, and already this week has seen a year’s worth of headlines regarding major airlines and terrible publicity on social media.

The incidents–whether self-inflicted or not–were severe enough to inspire yet another round of questions regarding a brand’s ability to both stand out and defend itself online.

We spoke to Peter LaMotte, SVP at LEVICK and Chair of the firm’s digital communications practice, for insights on this topic.

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The Future of Content Marketing Is Here, and It Looks a Lot Like Snapchat

snapchat

One of the more interesting social campaigns honored at this week’s Shorty Awards was the one promoting Wet Seal on Snapchat–a campaign for which the brand’s agency ICED Media lent the “keys” to its account to a 16-year-old fashion vlogger.

Like many of our readers, we’ve only begun to dip our toes into the Snapchat pool (by drawing various hairstyles on our puppy). We’re still not sure what to make of the network as a promotional tool, yet Wet Seal’s campaign earned the brand more than 9,000 new followers.

Many top agency leaders will tell you that Snapchat and networks like it represent the future of creative content marketing.

We spoke to ICED president Leslie Hall to learn more.

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Museum Hack Will Help Shake Up Your Stuffy Institution

MH at AMNH

Do you represent a museum or other notoriously stiff-collared institution? Do you ever wish for something to make your client’s consumer experience a bit more…dynamic?

Meet Museum Hack, a group founded by hardcore museum lovers to help others learn to better appreciate the considerable wonders on offer at New York’s best-known galleries. These hackers don’t just direct tourists and locals alike to pieces they might have missed–they also turn museum trips into corporate team building events for local companies.

As longtime museum-goers, we were curious–so we asked founder Nick Gray a few questions about his passion project.

We think you’ll agree that Museum Hack provides us with a great example of how to do things a little differently.

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National Youth Violence Prevention Week Needs More Champions

stop the violenceThis week is National Youth Violence Prevention Week

As the proud father of two school-age children, I value this awareness more than ever before because it has become personal to me. I suppose that is what it takes to embrace a cause, but why can’t support in the 3Ts – time, talent, treasure – be provided without that direct connection?

Think about all the national causes that go on every day, usually unnoticed by passer-by traffic on the Internet because it’s not personal to many of the surfers. Make it personal and they stop every time, right?

And therein lies the PR component. We should create awareness because it is deserved before it is necessary, don’t you think? Here is some awareness for us all to consider… Read more

Valleywag Will Continue to Make Your Tech Clients Sweat

valleywag-touch-icon-200x200If you have big tech names or promising startup clients on your roster, you may flinch each time you hear the word “Valleywag.”

Don’t count on that changing anytime soon. In a new interview with New York magazine, head tech muckraker Sam Biddle promises that–while his online persona is not an accurate representation of himself–he will continue trying to make your tech clients nervous with more than a little help from anonymous tipsters.

Most importantly, he does use Uber…no matter how much he may hate the company and everything it stands for.

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Here’s What You Need to Know About Pinterest’s Promoted Pins

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The first reports on Pinterest’s entry into paid media territory came way back in September, yet the “Promoted Pins” rollout has been more of a slow dribble. While first adopter Four Seasons received some press, for the most part all related stories have been teases designed to leave brands salivating at the potential.

Even a recent Wall Street Journal story calling the project an effort to “reinvent online advertising” noted that, while investors are convinced that Pinterest will prove profitable:

“The company declines to comment on precise timing, costs of the ads or who the first marketers will be.”

Vague enough for you? We recently spoke to Eric Schiffer, CEO of DigitalMarketing.com, for his take on what to make of this newest attempt to monetize social.

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STUDY: How Do Women Really Feel About the Word ‘Bossy?’

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This is a pre-Lean In pic

Facebook exec/Lean In founder Sheryl Sandberg‘s “Ban Bossy” campaign used Beyoncé to do the thing she does best: start a conversation. In the process, it inspired praise and backlash among men and women alike.

Viral videos aside, how do American women really feel about the word and the sentiments behind it? SheSpeaks, a “social activation and consumer insights platform” that specializes in helping brands connect with women, recently conducted a survey on the topic–and its findings may surprise you.

For example:

  • 55% of women think being bossy can damage a man’s career
  • Yet only 51% say it can damage a woman’s career

There’s more…

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New Mozilla CEO Tries to Control ‘Gay Marriage Firestorm’

Brendan-EichIn case you missed it (and you probably didn’t), Mozilla’s incoming CEO Brendan Eich has weathered a bit of criticism thanks to a 2008 donation to a group supporting Prop 8, the law that outlawed same-sex marriage in the state of California.

While Mozilla released a corporate statement reaffirming its support for “equality for all, including marriage equality for LGBT couples”, other companies like OkCupid turned the issue into a cause.

Mozilla employees also made their disapproval quite clear on social.

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The Onion President Talks Content Strategy

Mike-McAvoy-articleThe Onion: you know it and you probably like it. You may also know that the publication’s Onion Labs group creates sponsored content for a variety of clients. (You probably don’t know that the Labs’ home page includes a quote from the blog you’re reading, but we’ll remind you now because we love shameless self-promotion.)

So what sort of strategy underlies the creation of all that content? And why do so many companies want in on it?

Mediabistro’s wickedly talented Valerie Berrios recently talked to Mike McAvoy, president of the organization, to learn more.

On company culture:

“…what’s great about The Onion is everyone here cares about the content; they care about the products, so you have this united front in that everyone wants to see The Onion flourish…Everyone’s really smart, and they have to be in order to get the joke.

There [are] no bylines for the content that we create…it’s very team-oriented.”

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