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Archives: April 2009

PRWeek’s Last Weekly Issue

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After this week PRWeek will join Adweek as a marketing industry publication with the word “week” in its name that is not printed weekly. Adweek – owned by Nielsen Online Business Media – currently prints 36 issues per year, while PRWeek – owned by Haymarket Media – will scale back to a monthly print edition.

Writes The New York TimesStephanie Clifford, “[PRWeek] is now in the embarrassing position of all businesses that choose a too-specific moniker – think of the chef who christens his restaurant “8 Jones” after its street address, only to perplex customers when 8 Jones later moves to 14 Chestnut Street. So may the PRWeek subscribers feel confused when they receive a monthly magazine called PRWeek.

“We definitely had a debate about that, but the PRWeek brand is very strong and we’re very attached to it,” publishing director Julia Hood told Clifford.

[image courtesy The New York Times]

RELATED: PRWeek Goes Monthly; Weekly Edition Becomes Digital

The Ticker: Michelle Obama’s image; Corporations struggle with new media; Portfolio’s demise…

FishbowlNY: Portfolio Folds

Salt Lake Tribune: Corporate America’s messy embrace of new media comes with pain

New York Times: First Lady in Control of Building Her Image

New York Times Magazine Comment Is King: Reader comments are a key part of online journalism. So why do they mostly disappoint?

PRWeek: Omnicom posts 17% decline in Q1 PR revenues

Spin the Agencies of Record

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[Will SAG's new PR firm prevent another summer of protests? Via LAist]

This edition of Spin the Agencies of Record includes account wins in video gaming, track & field, trucking, a luxury hotel, and the Screen Actors Guild:

Cohn & Wolfe plays around with UbiSoft

Waggener Edstrom sprints ahead to win the Shanghai Golden Grand Prix, an international track & field event

The Screen Actors Guild (SAG) hires Saylor to keep its members from acting out. SAG previously worked with crisis guru Michael Sitrick

The Chatwal hotel shacks up with The Brandman Agency in time for its opening later this year

Old Dominion Freight Line keeps on trucking with Ogilvy Durham

Gibbs on Being White House Press Secretary “Funnest, Most Rewarding Job I’ve Ever Had”

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs made his first appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” yesterday, discussing the swine flu outbreak, (it is of “great concern to this White House”), prosecuting former Bush officials for torture policy (“we must look forward”) and what he makes of his first 100 days on the job (This is the “funnest, most rewarding job I’ve ever had.”)

Poll: How Long Until Twitter “Novelty PR” Wears Off?

Is it just us, or have you had more than your fair share of Twitter marketing/pr stories recently?

Pizza Hut got a ton of press for hiring a “Twittern” (Twitter Intern, get it?) to monitor the brand this summer.

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom announces his run for Governor of the state via Twitter.

Not to mention the NYTimes pens what seems to be about five Twitter related stories a day. (Tech reporter Saul Hansell counts 32 references on the newspaper’s website on Tuesday of this week.)

And we won’t event get into the whole Oprah/Ashton thing.

We’re guilty too, having just posted about this virtual “therapy session” service on Twitter. To top it all off, comScore reported today that worldwide visitors to Twitter.com increased 95 percent in the month of March from 9.8 million to 19.1 million, according to TechCrunch.

So, our question to you is: How long until this Twitter novelty PR wears off?

How long until this Twitter novelty PR wears off?(online surveys)

The Ticker: AOL’s Content, SAG’s Pricey PR Spend, Online Newspaper Audience Gains…

Today’s Twend, Twanalyze Your Twitter

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Does your Twitter feed accurately project your personality? Are you sociable, vain, chatty, academic? Apparently our feed is, according to a quick therapy session on the virtual couch of Twanalyst.com.

We’re also not practicing what we’re preaching by not following enough people and not even putting up our location, URL or bio–we’re too vain, and busy! We promise work on our personality right away. Give it a spin and see what you find out about your Twitter flaws.

Top 50 Publicity Stunts, According to a U.K. Firm Who Builds Them

PRNewser loves a good publicity stunt, and in our opinion a list of the top 50 isn’t nearly enough, especially when done from a British perspective.

U.K. consumer PR agency Taylor Herring assembled their picks for the best of the best, and we can’t blame them for putting in a few of their own such as floating an fake iceberg with polar bear down the Thames to promote the launch of eden TV (reaching 260 million people), and flying a Spider Pig to promote the Simpsons Movie DVD. According to that case study, “we employed a marksman to be on hand to take the pig down in case it attempted an escape”. Now that’s thorough planning.

The list is chock full of one-off classics such as the Beatles’ final concert atop the Apple Records office, the Britney / Madonna makeout, and the Blair Witch Project, perhaps the most successful stunt dollar for dollar (incidentally created by Mike Monello who went on to found Camfire, a firm I freelanced for last summer).

Other stunts went on to become institutions like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, the Tour de France and even the FBI’s Most Wanted List. The list doesn’t include the craven classic “Torches of Freedom,” a stunt created by the father of PR Edward Bernays to get women to take up smoking.

Vocus Earnings: Good or Bad?

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PR software company Vocus, Inc. reported earnings yesterday. But were the results good or bad? It may be hard to tell from these competing headlines from both the Associated Press and PRWeek.

AP: Vocus shares slump after 1Q results

The company posted a loss of $478,000, or 3 cents per share, compared with a loss of $403,000, or 2 cents per share, in the same period a year earlier.

Excluding amortization of intangible assets and stock-based compensation costs, Vocus earned $2.9 million, or 15 cents per share, in the latest quarter.

Revenue rose 14 percent to $20.4 million from $17.9 million.

PRWeek: Vocus reports 14% revenue growth in Q1 2009

On-demand PR management software provider Vocus reported $20.4 million in revenues for Q1 2009, a 14% growth over the same period last year. The company added 179 new subscriptions in Q1, bringing the total number of subscribers to 3,558

Confused? So are we. It’s pretty simple though: PRWeek chose to focus on revenue, which did increase, while the AP focused on profits and stock price, which were down.

[image cred]

Ellen Moran Leaves White House Communications Post

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Ellen Moran is leaving her post as White House Communications Director to become the Chief of Staff at the Department of Commerce. As Politico’s Ben Smith says, it’s not a common trajectory.

The AP reminds us that Moran was the only member of President Obama’s inner circle that did not have a long term relationship with him, and did not play a role in the epic two-year campaign to win.

To call it a frat house would be unfair as there are so many women in White House positions of power. However, dare we hazard an uninformed guess, she served her usefulness getting the Communication department organized in the first 100 days–skills learned from running EMILY’s List.

Like Bush and his longtime relationship with Karl Rove and Karen Hughes, Obama seems to have messaging and positioning duties more than covered with David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs.

[photo via New York Times magazine from NY Times Mag: Meet Obama's Communications Team]

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