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Posts Tagged ‘Ed Zitron’

Journalists Recommend Getting More Strategic with Event Invites

Tony Romm covers tech for Politico, so of course he would get multiple invites to the Consumer Electronics Show Las Vegas, or “the Global Stage for Innovation.

It’s not just him, though: we’ve received several invites ourselves from PRs repping ad agencies and ad tech companies; we even got one from straight from Time, Inc. CES is a big conference that’s been around since 1967, and the fact that it’s not open to the public makes it a prime stage for showing off the work of clients even if they have little or nothing to do with larger trends in technology.

That said, the lead-up to this year’s event has also seen some grumbling from writers receiving a deluge of form pitches. Friend of the site Ed Zitron got a bit of attention earlier this week for collecting all related emails and trolling the hell out of the PR professionals who sent them.

We definitely wouldn’t go that far; we have enough people angry at us on any given day. But we do feel like the event could be a great opportunity to stress the value of strategic targeting. We asked Alan Henry, tech blogger for Gawker property Lifehacker, for his take.

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It’s Time We Gave Bad Pitches a New Name: ‘MULGE’

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This is a guest post by Ed Zitron, EZ-PR founder, Inc. columnist and author of This Is How You Pitch.

Every industry has its own specific terminology and neologisms. The PR industry has done fairly well at creating a few – “pitching,” “source-filing” and more – but we don’t have many of our own straight-up words.

TV producers, bloggers and reporters regularly receive 400-word blasted emails that don’t actually say much of actually other than how good a given client is. As I’ve established in the past, it’s my belief that this is what everyday PR pitches are like. At no point should anyone in our industry pretend that this is not what goes out every day from most agencies, whether the messages come from an Account Executive or a Director.

Mail-merging aside, unread and unlovable email blobs unfortunately remain standard practice.

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4 Things PR People Can Learn from Malcolm Tucker

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This is a guest post by Ed Zitron, Twitter personality and EZ-PR founder. SPOILER: It contains some salty, NSFW language.

The movie In The Loop and the British comedy/fake reality show The Thick Of It feature the only realistic PR person in fiction: the beautifully Scottish Malcolm Tucker, played by Peter Capaldi (who is now Doctor Who).

Tucker, the Director of Communications of the United Kingdom, has a style that the word ‘acerbic’ doesn’t quite do justice. Mere minutes into In The Loop, Tucker yells “fuckity bye”; he refers to someone in the first episode of The Thick of It as “as useless as a marzipan dildo.” He’s a true anti-hero — he goes over the cliff of “honesty” into the realm of ferocity, verbally destroying anyone in his path. He manipulates, he tortures (verbally), he storms into rooms and immediately starts saying “here’s what we’re gonna do.” He’s quick, and mean, and cruel, because he wants to fix the mountain of problems the characters of the show create for themselves (and the government).

I have yet to scream swearwords at someone who works for me (or a member of the media), nor have I deliberately told someone to remove something lest they see sensitive information on a cake. But I do have a certain affinity for Tucker, and you should too.

Here’s why.

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The Real Top 14 PR Twits to Follow in 2014 (Part 3)

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There are numerous PR blogs on this World Wide Web, many of which we highly recommend you bookmark today. And although we pride ourselves on being the hottest tourist spot in the Mediabistro nation, we implore all PR professionals to get a bit more familiar with their industry.

Baffling fact: media lists are one thing, but for many PRs the only “who’s who” list that matters concerns people within their own agency.

And yet, there are many incredible people of note in this industry. That’s why we try to shine a light on the real motivators of media, purveyors of PR, and sultans of SEO. And now, after some due diligence (and ignoring our inbox for a few days), we have another list. In fact, it’s Part 3 of a series.

Get your bookmarks ready for the next 14 power players of PR on Twitter.

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Why Do So Many Journalists Dislike PR?

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This morning we came across a post on LinkedIn written by Account Executive Kim Cox of The Cline Group and titled “There’s a Reason Journalists Hate PRs.”

We were compelled — especially since the premise of the story was a reading of EZ-PR founder Ed Zitron‘s book This Is How You Pitch, which he also discussed with us two months ago.

The headline’s conflict is a problem to which we see no long-term “solution”. Cox’s point (and Zitron’s) is that each PR professional needs to develop something approaching a relationship with those on the other side of the media aisle rather than simply sending blind emails and wondering why no one ever replies.

But we all know this. And it’s not so simple, either: no matter how often the journalists Cox cited in her post talk badly about PR, we also see them going back and forth with smart reps on Twitter. And those are just the public interactions.

We reached out to Zitron, who had a few things to say and write.

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15 People Business Insider Left Off Its ‘Top 50 Tech PR’ List

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ICYMI, yesterday Business Insider posted another of its famous clickbait listicles (not that we would ever do anything like that, cough cough). This one was of particular interest to the people in PR.

It’s true that “The 50 Best Public Relations People in the Tech Industry in 2014” was — as one of our industry friends put it — “so arbitrary.” At the same time, it’s always good to see journalists highlighting the real, valuable work done by PR rather than denigrating the entire industry.

It was also nice to see friends of the site Ed Zitron of EZPR and Barbara Bates of Eastwick get some respect.

A couple of things we noticed: someone really likes working with Waggener Edstrom and Brew PR and there weren’t a whole lot of names on the list from the usual suspects. Check out the O’Dwyer’s top tech firms list and notice how many of them didn’t appear in the BI post.

After the jump, we listed some people — both abstract and specific — whose absence we noted.

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Ed Zitron Wants to Help You Learn How to Pitch

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Ed Zitron is several things: author; PR veteran; founder of EZPR; extremely prolific tweeter; British person.

His book, This Is How You Pitch, promises to dispel the unfortunately common idea that a career in PR is an endless series of parties and mutual back scratches between journalists and the people who do what we do. According to its own site, the book can “tell you how to avoid becoming a buzzword-spitting automaton that the media will hate.”

Curious? We spoke to Zitron to learn more about his (very blunt) take on the art of pitching…and the just-as-important art of clearing up misconceptions.

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Can PR Spending Predict a New Tech Bubble?

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Earlier this week the San Francisco Chronicle published a sort of insider’s perspective on how the state of tech PR could reveal a pending Silicon Valley “bubble”—and they asked a couple of our favorite contacts to weigh in.

Tech’s venture capital take in 2013 was its highest since 2001, leading some unnamed observers to both wonder whether there’s a new bubble approaching and, if so, when it might burst. As white-hot industries begin their rapid fall back to earth, PR budgets are usually the first to get cut—so market experts look to the communications industry for clues regarding the health of Silicon Valley at large.

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Here’s Why You Should Never Make Another Follow-Up Phone Call to a Journalist

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OK, hold on: that headline is a slight exaggeration (notice we said slight).

Friend of the show Ed Zitron‘s latest story for Inc. magazine concerns the tendency of otherwise knowledgable PRs to overuse that most arcane of communications tools. Plenty of people know that cold calling is a bad idea but do it anyway due to a combination of desperation and the fact that this is the way things have always been done.

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6 PR Experts Weigh in on Google’s New Guest Post Crackdown

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Earlier today we posted on Google‘s latest in a long line of attempts to discourage spammy guest posts designed to boost sites’ rankings with keywords and the dreaded “dofollow links.”

As the marketing/PR blog world freaked out around us, we wondered: should we swear off guest posts altogether?

Of course not; today’s clarification from the kings of search says that you’ll only be punished if your sole reason for posting is the rankings bounce we mentioned. In order to understand what this means for PR, we asked several of our favorite contacts for their takes.

Quotes (emphasis ours) after the jump.

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