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Posts Tagged ‘General Electric’

GE and Jimmy Fallon Show You Their GIFs

Here’s an interesting little case study that combines three things we like: sponsored content, social media and real-time marketing.

General Electric is all about invention, right? So the company encouraged fans and followers to submit their own great ideas using the hashtag #SomeoneShouldInvent and created customized GIFs of their favorites.

On to the sponsored part, which features Jimmy Fallon and a bunch of adorable kids (come on, you have to click)…

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The PR Measurement Debate Enters a New Stage

Going up...

Putting the usual cultural/political flotsam and jetsam aside, these are two of the month’s most interesting developments in the PR world:

1. A majority of marketing execs think PR should handle social media duties

2. Many clients are ditching the idea of “social ROI” altogether

In short, an increasing number of people think that PR is best equipped to do social, and many within the industry are pushing for a bigger focus on measurement. At the same time, the concept of measuring the success of social campaigns in dollars-and-cents terms is losing favor among certain higher-ups.

The second point got a big boost last week when four major corporations announced plans to adopt measurement standards developed by the Coalition for Public Relations Standards, a group created in 2012 with the participation of nearly every major PR industry group.

What does this mean?

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General Electric’s Gary Sheffer Named Chairman of Arthur W. Page Society

In what would appear to be another move toward greater focus on corporate transparency, the Arthur W. Page Society has named General Electric‘s head PR man Gary Sheffer as its newest chairman.

Sheffer, who’s been included on PRWeek‘s power list in the past, faced significant challenges at GE after the economic collapse and subsequent government bailout. He promoted a transparency strategy that included creating the “GE Works” CSR project, responding to political scuffles and promoting the company’s awesome “science fair” Vine project.

Sheffer has been a member of the Page Society since 2006, and in accepting the position he writes:

We live in a challenging era of heightened expectations and radical transparency. Page is working with CCOs to build public trust for their organizations through corporate character and authentic advocacy.

No easy task, that; we think it safe to say that true corporate transparency is both more valuable and more challenging than ever.

10 of the Best Brands on Vine

Twitter’s Vine short video sharing service is the new thing. You’ve probably heard of it–you may have even seen what was supposed to be the world’s first Vine press release. And you’re going to keep hearing about it, because six-second video loops are quick, impressionistic and perfect for our social media age.

Laugh if you must, but some brands have already proven this newest buzzy toy to be a worthy tool for spreading the (branded) message around social media. We searched the Internet high and low to find some examples of brands using Vine to get their names out there in creative ways–along with a couple that don’t quite make the cut.

1. General Electric: We don’t even care whether GE’s “six second science” series directly promotes the company’s products. It is awesome.

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Roll Call: Edelman, 360 Public Relations, We Are Social and More

Edelman PR announced this week that Ruth Edelman will serve as deputy chairman of parent company DJE Holdings following the January passing of her husband, company founder Daniel J. Edelman. This will be a non-executive role; Edelman will provide counsel to both clients and executives while also hosting agency-sponsored events. A new non-executive DJE chairman will be chosen from outside the company in due course. (Release)

360 Public Relations announced the addition of Meredith Gandy as senior publicist in the agency’s growing New York office. Gandy previously served as Senior Publicist at KQED, the Bay Area’s PBS station. She garnered attention for prime-time, nationally acclaimed programming, such as “Saving the Bay” and ” China From the Inside.”  Most recently at KQED, Gandy supervised national efforts for the top-rated PBS KIDS program, “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That!” Gandy will contribute to clients based in 360PR’s New York and Boston offices. (Release)

We Are Social filled a pair of important new roles within its New York office.

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G.E. Is Totally Cool With 30 Rock, You Guys

30 Rock Tina Fey Alec BaldwinSay you’re a PR/branding exec at a big corporation. Say there’s a certain sitcom that’s been making fun of you mercilessly for seven years (while appearing on a network that you once owned). What would you do?

Well, if you’re General Electric and that sitcom is 30 Rock, you embrace it after maintaining an adversarial relationship for more than six seasons. G.E., which has seen its “Six Sigma” super-productivity culture mocked repeatedly by Tina Fey, recently decided to let the public know that it is totally in on the joke.

We weren’t the only ones who noticed the company’s weird “thank you” commercial on last week’s episode. Global director of brand management Linda Boff explained everything to Ad Age, saying “G.E. employees and G.E. executives have laughed for the last seven years along with the rest of the audience.”

Oh yeah? Something tells us that former CEO/conspiracy theorist Jack Welch (aka Jack Donaghy) didn’t even chuckle, but at least somebody has a sense of humor.

It’s a bit of a rebranding, really:

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Do We Need Universal Standards for Measuring Success in PR?

The art (and it is an art) of measuring success for clients has long been a challenge for PR firms. In the era of “Big Data”, most industry veterans agree that metrics, otherwise known as “numbers”, are more important than ever–and that the PR business needs to continually work on improving the ways we show clients the true value of our work.

A recent Council of Public Relations Firms blog post by vice president of research and development David Geddes proposes the creation and adoption of industry-wide measurement standards. When every firm has a different way of measuring success, clients understandably get a little frustrated: how can they compare and contrast individual campaigns?

Geddes and his group, The Coalition for Public Relations Research Standards, brought together various industry organizations including the Council of Public Relations Firms, Institute for Public Relations, PRSA, Global Alliance, and AMEC to try and tackle the project. They also organized a panel of big-name clients like McDonald’s, General Electric and more to review the results of their efforts and determine, as PR customers, whether the standards are relevant and “usable.”

Their goal: come up with universal ways to show that projects involving social media, traditional media and even ethics are really working for clients.

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Why Do Marketing/PR Execs Resist Social Media?

For all the talk of original content and social interactions defining a brand in the current age, you’d think that the fingerprints of various marketing chiefs would be all over the social media sphere.

And yet, according to a study performed by conference company BusinessNext Social, the very opposite is true: only 20% of CMOs at Fortune 500 companies have a discernible social media presence.

We understand that most C-level execs, who tend to move from brand to brand throughout their careers, would rather avoid the PR risks of social media by letting other members of their teams take responsibility for spreading the brand message. But the study confirms that most remain stubbornly resistant to Twitter; isn’t that something of an old-school perspective?

The market may force them to jump online: The CMO Survey predicts that social media spending as a share of marketing budgets will nearly triple over the coming five years, and “Gartner Research predicts the CMO will spend more on IT than the CIO by 2017.”

What’s the social media model for the successful CMO? This handy infographic lists Beth Comstock of General Electric as the most influential marketing officer on the social circuit, and a quick glance at her account reveals why:

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What Will ‘The Future of Storytelling’ Look Like?

Charlie Melcher has been upending traditions and expectations in the publishing industry for more than 25 years. He first broke onto the scene in a big way with Madonna’s notorious “SEX” book, and his company Melcher Media published a string of successful titles ranging from Eminem’s autobiography to Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” before Melcher was forced “out of [his] comfort zone” in 2009 by a market that continues to push the industry in a digital direction.

Melcher Media’s first significant digital project was creating an app tie-in to Gore’s most recent book, “Our Choice”. After the app ruled the iTunes store for a few weeks and received both a David Pogue write up in The New York Times and a design award from Apple, Melcher became more fully invested in the idea of “reinventing the book for the digital age” and turning traditional narratives into multi-media experiences.

Melcher has some big ideas about the future that extend well beyond the world of traditional publishing and into the basic practice of storytelling, or the human desire to share and re-share personal narratives that touch us, move us, and even infuriate us. This Friday, October 5th in New York’s Snug Harbor, Melcher Media will host a one-day summit titled “The Future of Storytelling” to begin the complex task of turning those ideas into reality—and you’re invited.

This won’t be your conventional media gathering;

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Olympics Ads Boost Brand Perceptions for BP and Others

A recent survey conducted by YouGov BrandIndex in order to gauge the public’s perceptions of Olympics advertisers may prove that the coveted ad slots and expensive sponsorships are worthy investments, especially for certain brands with PR problems.

According to Ad Age, surveyors posed the same question for each brand: “If you’ve heard anything about the brand in the last two weeks, through advertising, news or word of mouth, was it positive or negative?” YouGov then derived scores ranging from 100 to -100 by subtracting negative feedback from positive (For instance, a score of zero means a brand received equal parts positive and negative feedback).

Oil company and international pariah BP, whose public image has soured since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf Of Mexico, reportedly saw its score jump from a negative 5.9 in the week prior to the Olympics to a positive 2.6 during the first week of the games thanks to ads like this one. Only Visa, which, according to YouGov, spent $100 million to be a “Worldwide Olympic Partner”, saw its brand perception rise more during the same time period. Ted Marzilli, global managing director for YouGov’s BrandIndex service, told Ad Age, “We have seen the recovery with BP over the last year and a half…but I think its association with the Olympics is showing benefits.”

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