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Archives: September 2009

Who Is The Hottest Guy On Twitter?


Twitter is already a bastion for marketing gimmicks. How many “Please RT to Win X” tweets have you seen lately? (Ok fine, we’ve done it once or twice ourselves.) One man is taking it a step further, proclaiming himself the “Hottest Guy on Twitter,” and even has an accompanying press release. That man is David Feingold.

Writes MediaPost’s Kelly Samardack, “What’s weirder than this been-done-to-death spoof is the PR company behind it and Feingold: Your Promote. That’s not even correct or understandable grammar.”

Either way, the PR firm better start working harder to justify their bill – if they’re even getting paid. The “news” has a whopping one result on Google Blog Search.

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Clean Up That Resume


Pollack is looking for Account Executives (plural)

Target 10 seeks a Account Supervisor for LGBT marketing

The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center in College Park, MD seeks a Communications Manager

A Senior Digital Marketing Manager is needed at Babelgum

Yak Pak wants a PR and marketing person

Laurel Touby: “I Haven’t Taken a Real Vacation Since I Started the Company in 1994″


FishbowlNY caught up with mediabistro founder Laurel Touby for a feature interview as she begins her six-month sabbatical, traveling the world with husband Jon Fine.

On what she is most proud of:

When you look back at the hundreds or thousands of Internet companies that were around when we started in 1994, there’s not many of them left. There was Nerve and AOL, but The Knot wasn’t there, Google wasn’t there, YouTube didn’t exist. I wish you could take a snapshot of the Web and see what was there at the time and what is still there. There’s not a lot that’s survived.

On if she had any “pangs of guilt” from selling mediabistro two years ago or going on sabbatical:

No, not really. I always thought of myself as sort of an adoptive parent, because when I got funding for the company in 1996 — I got funding from VCs, who were pretty serious investors — they said to me, “Are you sure you can do what it takes? One day you may not be CEO, you may have to sell it, you may have to go public and let someone else run it and it may become a huge thing that you aren’t capable of running.

Touby is currently in Italy and this Italian PRNewser certainly agrees with this statement: “Right now, it’s harvest season in Italy and Italians really know how to relax.” Read the full interview here and check out Touby and Fine’s blog chronicling their travels, Culture Tripping.

(Photo by Jon Fine)

From The Recruiter’s Desk: How To Make The Best Impression In an Interview and Land the Position

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Lindsay Olson is a partner and recruiter with Paradigm Staffing (and PRNewser guest columnist). She specializes in helping companies and agencies find public relations and communications professionals throughout the United States. Olson has over ten years experience recruiting in the PR industry and also writes a career-related blog at You can find her on Twitter via @prjobs.

Olson’s latest column addresses a question on the minds of many PR pros currently on the job hunt: what are the most important things to consider that make the best impression during the interview process and ensure success in landing a PR position?

Job seekers are certainly not lacking advice from career experts on how to get a job in today’s job market. Most of it applies in any job market – good or bad. I thought it would be helpful to get more specific and ask a small group HR professionals working in PR agencies their advice to help a candidate make the best impression during the interview process and ensure his or her success in landing a PR position.

This is what they had to say:

Read more

PR War on Jane Street; Agency Claims Blogger Collusion


In just four months, the Jane Hotel has become one of the hottest clubs in town, with the help of classic spot-the-celeb PR tactics of Nancy Friedman‘s NJF PR. Except, the Jane isn’t a club at all, but a hotel bar operating without a cabaret license. The club is trying to adjust, and now Friedman and her client have shifted to damage control to limit the blog swarm against the new venue and tamp down complaints aggregated on the Nightmare on Jane Street blog.

Friedman told us she’s convinced the same blogs that gave glowing reviews to the revamped hotel and ballroom have removed those posts at the behest of local residents. More on that in a moment.

The thumping music and crowds spilling out on to the street after 2 AM was enough for the affluent neighbors to hire their own firm Source Communications. It was revealed in an Andrea Peyser New York Post column (followed by the City Room) that Ken Frydman of Source was hired to knock down the club’s rep, and knock it down again. Frydman told me on the phone a member of the Jane Street Neighbors coalition knew of Source, and put in a call.

Friedman made her case in the Post, one of the few that let her:

“A lot of these issues have been rectified. Six people keep traffic moving. They control crowds. The hotel has done acoustical work.” She said there’s more to be done. “It’s a process. It’s not going to happen overnight.”

More after the jump:

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Which Press Secretaries Will Have the Hardest Jobs Come Midterm Elections?

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From taking bribes to switching parties, Politico determines the ten press secretaries that face “serious messaging challenges in the upcoming election cycle.” They are:

Glen Caplin: Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)

Debbee Keller: Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.)

Jonathan Godfrey: Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.)

Joel DiGrado: Sen. David Vitter (R-La.)

Bryan DeAngelis: Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.)

Peter Boylan: Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii)

Todd Jurkowski: Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.)

Princella Smith: Rep. Anh “Joseph” Cao (R-La.)

Alisia Essig: Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah)

Kate Kelly: Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.)

Read the full story here.

Interview: Mrs. Butterworth!


For today’s interview we decided to do something different. Rather than write about branding, spokespeople, and nostalgia in marketing, we thought we’d go right to the source, and talk to one of the classic TV commercial characters of the 1980s: Mrs. Butterworth, of Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup.

The spokesbottle is in the midst of a revival lately which may have begun with a guest appearance for Geico two years ago.

Now, the Mrs. is back, harnessing the power of her fans on Twitter, Facebook, and with a contest to finally reveal her first name.

To join the big reveal at 11:30 Eastern tomorrow, RSVP by sending an email and the call-in number will be provided.

The campaign is part of PR effort by Pinnacle Foods with the help of their agency, the Bender Hammerling Group.

We asked the Mrs. about everything from her new job description, the advantage of also being the packaging, the end of Schadenfreude in advertising, and even about those sugar-fueled parties of the 1980s:

PRNewser: Your boss used to put you on the Sunday TV with a few choice lines. Now you’re doing press conference calls, you’re on Twitter & Facebook–is that how you reach the people these days? Did you get a raise?

Tee hee, I’m not interested in a raise, I’m happy as long as people keep using my thick and rich syrup. But you’re right, dear; I’m quite busy these days and I haven’t always been so internet-savvy! It’s true, I find this is great new way to reach families. Imagine, I used to only be able to talk to kids at the breakfast table! Oh my, I’m reaching my friends on Twitter and Facebook and even on the YouTubes! You see, in 2007, I returned to TV commercials for the first time in a decade. I’m becoming quite the syrup celebrity.

PRNewser: How many contestants guessed your name correctly? How about the strangest guess–can you drop us that?

It still sends shivers down my bottle, dear, that over 8,000 people wanted to guess my first name! There were just a few who guessed my name correctly, and I’ll be announcing all of this today. As far as the strangest guess, just like there are no wrong questions, my dear, in my syrupy-sweet world there are no wrong answers! This contest was all about imagination and I’ve learned that my breakfast-loving friends are full of just that-playful imagination!

More after the jump:

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Kraft Learns About Risks in Crowdsourcing


“Crowdsourcing” has emerged as a popular trend for companies to have the public come up with everything from ad campaigns to slogans for their brands. There are numerous success stories of companies employing crowdsourcing – most recently Netflix completed an open competition to improve the algorithm for its recommendation system by ten percent. The prize was $1 million and the contest attracted tons of attention from software engineers and the press.

Kraft Foods, seeking a name for an updated version of Vegemite – a food spread popular in Australia – found itself in a less fortunate position. 48,000 potential names were submitted, and Kraft chose “iSnack 2.0,” which was submitted by Australian web developer as a joke. The problem? The name has nothing to do with the brand, and Vegemite fans hate the name, which has lead to the social media backlash and PR challenges which often result from these types of situations.

“The fact that the marketing communication will have to essentially explain the name (rather than the functional benefit), immediately prevents the brand from gaining any true emotional headway with the mass consumer who wasn’t familiar with the initial promotion,” said Richie Cruz, Digital Strategist for AgencyNet in a comment on Advertising Age‘s story.

Incidentally, Jeff Howe, the man who coined the term crowdsourcing, and wrote the book (literally) will be speaking at mediabistro’s upcoming User Generated Conference Expo (UGCX) in a few weeks. We’ll make sure to get his take on this latest crowdsourcing kerfluffle.


The Ticker: Twitter Scam; Newspaper Accuracy; Flu PR…

Former Portland Press Herald Opinion Editor Launches PR Firm

John Porter, the longtime opinion editor for Maine’s largest daily newspaper, the Portland Press Herald, has launched John Porter Public Strategies. Porter left the Press Herald in July after it was acquired by MaineToday Media Inc. There have been a number of Press Herald employees who recently left the paper for PR:

Former editor Jeannine Guttman now serves as Communications Director for Maine Sen. Susan Collins.

Former managing editor Eric Conrad is now director of marketing and communications at Augusta-based MaineGeneral Health.

Former business editor Eric Blom is now vice president of public relations for Yarmouth-based Broadreach Public Relations.

If anything this trend is not surprising. The paper closed all of its bureaus outside Portland in July 2008 in conjunction with the layoffs of 24 employees, and of course continues to face the challenging economic environment for print advertising.