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Archives: June 2008

Houston CBS Affiliate Falls for WWE PR Stunt


WWE wrestling is fake. Most people know that. However, there have been a few instances in which the organization has fooled the media into reporting its stunts as the real thing.

The latest example? Houston CBS affiliate KHOU, which posted the story, “WWE chairman hurt in freak accident,” after Vince McMahon pretended to be injured by a collapsing set at a WWE event in San Antonio.

Reader Chris at Blog of Hilarity used to work for WWE PR and sent in the following from his post on that matter [edited to remove obscenities]:

I worked for WWE’s PR department last year during the time Vince’s limo blew up. I will preface this by saying that I greatly enjoyed my time at WWE and was treated extremely well. It was an awesome experience and made me even better at what I do. I had to pretend TO LEGITIMATE MEDIA that Vince McMahon has actually been blown up in a limo accident. Actually, no, I couldn’t say “Vince McMahon.” I had to say “MR. MCMAHON” (because that’s the character).

Ah, the world that is WWE PR.

The Ticker: Howard Brandy, Google & Ads, AT&T

Engadget EIC: “The Value of a Press Release is Conversation”


PRNewser was present at this morning’s BusinessWire event, “A Social Media Conversation: How PR, IR & Marketing Professionals Can Engage and Participate in the Social Web.”

Publicity Club of New York President and Flatiron Communications Founder Peter Himler moderated a panel that included Rob Key, CEO & Founder, Converseon, Jim Neil, Chief Strategy & Marketing Officer, TNS/Cymfony, Ryan Block, Editor-in-Chief, Engadget, Josh Cohen, Senior Business Product Manager, Google News, Peter Hershberg, Managing Partner, Reprise Media and Melissa Bauer, Senior Public Relations Manager, The Knot.

As usual with “new media” events, there was the irony of no wi-fi available, despite being smack in the middle of Manhattan. Nonetheless, we welcomed the hospitality and ambience present at the 3 West Club.

When room for questions appeared, we asked Block what he thought about news aggregators such as Techmeme posting direct links to press releases and company blogs.

Read more

Clean Up That Resume

revolvingdoor1.jpg is looking for a summer PR Intern

The Humane Society of the United States is looking for a PR Specialist

Iconix Brand Group is looking for a PR Manager

American Assoc. for the Advancement of Science is looking for a Communications Associate

Associated Content is looking for a Community Manager

How Does a Social Media Campaign Succeed?


“You get it on Oprah, and you’re done,” stated Paul Beck, Sr. Partner, Executive Director of Digital, Ogilvy Worldwide at today’s OMMA Social conference.

Well then, it’s just that easy.

For live reporting from the conference, click here.

McCain Rep Spins Candidate’s Internet Use


The Personal Democracy Forum, which examines how “technology and the Internet are changing democracy in America,” is currently taking place in New York. On a panel this morning, a McCain rep was spinning the presidential candidates’ internet savvy.

From NY Times media reporter Brian Stelter, “McCain’s ‘net rep: ‘You don’t necessarily have to know how to use a computer to see how it shapes the country.’”

From Fast Company‘s Robert Scoble, “John McCain is aware of the Internet.” Defense of McCain on stage at #pdf2008 in argument about whether candidate needs to use a computer.”

McCain’s seemingly out of touch technology habits could continue to be a major talking point for the Obama campaign, as they raise tens of millions on the net, and are met with feeble responses such as today’s. Does it matter to you how computer savvy our next president is?

PRWeek/MS&L Survey: 75% Expect Digital Spending To Increase


PRWeek and agency Manning Selvage & Lee today released their 2008 Marketing Management Survey of 252 marketing executives.

Not surprisingly, 75.4% expect spending for digital/online initiatives to increase, compared to 42.5% for direct marketing spend, 36.5% for PR budgets, and 32.5% for ad budgets.

The survey also tackled ethical issues:

7.9% of respondents have either paid for or provided a gift to an editor in exchange for a news story about their company. In addition, 18.7% have bought advertising in return for a news story and 10.3% have had an implicit/non-verbal agreement with a reporter or editor that advertising will result in favorable coverage.

Read the full report here.

The Trick to Getting Front Page Ink

Who doesn’t want front page story? Whether it’s in a newspaper, magazine or trade publication, scoring a cover story will be sure to make your client – or boss – happy.

But how do you do it? Well, first off, you have to ask. Without a good pitch, a cover story you shall not receive.

Former Microsoft marketer turned consultant, Whitney Keyes, writes in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer how she secured a front page story for a Web TV show she hosts and co-produces.

Whitney’s tactic? A targeted pitch to a single writer, referencing a series of stories she was producing and suggesting a relevant topic for a future story. It took several months, but Whitney got her front page story.

NY Daily News Has Hit With PR


The number five most read story on the New York Daily News website right now is “Getting your business noticed through public relations.”

The story offers some “PR 101″ tips, mostly geared towards smaller business and newbies. Interestingly, PRWeb is the only wire service that is mentioned, (perhaps because it’s cheapest?) leaving out Businesswire, Marketwire and PRNewswire.

Former “PR agent” Howard Geltzer gives the money quote to end the story. “Don’t expect the end result necessarily to be all about you,” Geltzer said. “It might be about someone who’s succeeded because you provided a product or service. If you really want it to be exactly all about you, buy an ad.”

For Immediate Release Fridays: Live Nation

[Former LiveNation CEO Michael Cohl]

Co-editor Jason is away on vacation, so that leaves yours truly to deliver this week’s “For Immediate Release Fridays,” our weekend look at the buried bad news uploaded to the wires on Friday night.

Got bad news? Make it public on Friday at 5pm. People will care less, trust us.

In this edition:

Music industry bohemoth Live Nation announces that Michael Cohl has transitioned to a consultant role from his post as Chief Executive Officer.

A new economic report from the U.S. Conference of Mayors Annual Meeting in Miami reveals that U.S. economic growth for 2008 has weakened considerably, while unemployment and consumer prices have risen sharply.

The Schwarzenegger Administration, in an eleventh hour move, took action to delay a hearing on a temporary restraining order (TRO) sought by eight retail community pharmacies to stop the ten percent Medi-Cal provider cuts from taking effect on July 1, 2008