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Posts Tagged ‘Mother Nature Network’

SeaWorld Breathes a Sigh of Relief As Blackfish Shut Out of Oscar Nominations

So the Oscar nominations came out today, and we have to say: Jonah Hill‘s come a long way since Knocked Up.

We also agree with the Orlando Sentinel: there’s little doubt that SeaWorld execs and company reps were anxious about today’s announcement and even less doubt that they’re glad Blackfish didn’t get the nod for Best Documentary Feature.

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And yes, that’s definitely why they chose this week to announce that they’d broken attendance and revenue records in 2013.

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MasterCard Sees Brand Journalism As An Interactive PR Experience

Content. Content. Content. Content.

With Ad Week dominated by talk of content, content…CONTENT!!!, it should surprise no one to see more and more major brands create their own publishing platforms. As Matt Crenshaw of Mother Nature Network told us, “…it’s not enough to build a corporate website because no one goes to corporate websites.”

We’re interested in watching different brands offer their take on this trend, and the latest is MasterCard. While the brand has long maintained its own newsroom, its newest endeavor is a two-sided re-invention of that feature, which now consists of the Engagement Bureau news page and the Cashless Pioneers blog.

We posed a few questions for Jennifer Stalzer, VP of global digital communications at MasterCard, and we’ve posted her answers and our analysis after the jump.

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When Sponsored Content Met CSR and Made Magic Happen

Matt Crenshaw, Mother Nature Network

One thing we can all agree on: PR professionals will spend a lot of time working on sponsored content and corporate social responsibility projects for the foreseeable future.

“Sponsored content” is the hottest phrase in PR and marketing right now, primarily because it means such different things to different people. Yes, it’s a new twist on the classic advertising discipline, but SC can clearly amount to more than BuzzFeed listicles barely related to the product at hand or conspicuous blog posts that hang out at The Huffington Post under the “sponsored story” heading.

Last month we spoke to Matt Crenshaw, president of environmental and social responsibility news site Mother Nature Network, to learn about how his organization has begun to serve clients by combining CSR and sponsored content in one fell swoop.

Why are brands increasing their focus on CSR? 

Well, a recent Cone Communications study found that 80% of people feel that brands have a responsibility to tell them what they’re doing for the greater good, and another study found that brands that put “values” at their core outperform the S&P 500 by about 300%. We all joke about Whole Foods being “Whole Paycheck”, but they are really a lifestyle platform based on “values”, and they’ve done a great job of taking this niche movement and making a big business out of it.

What role can sponsored content play in this equation?

We live in an age where brands need to tell a story and hit you on an emotional level. MNN wants to be the Whole Foods for content: if you’re AT&T and you want to reach the high-value, socially responsible consumer, then you don’t talk about a discount on your phone, you talk about these tablets you created for kids on the autistic spectrum to help them learn. So MNN created a documentary series about it:

Of course, at the end it’s “AT&T: Rethink Possible”, and it’s clearly labeled “content provided by AT&T“, but our role is to say “here’s the story behind the brand.”

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Roll Call: Olson, Ogilvy PR, MWW and More

Olson announced that it has rebranded its public-relations and social-media unit as Olson Engage. According to Olson Engage president Bryan Specht, the new moniker better reflects the work the agency is doing – and winning – as it grows nationwide. The group has operated as Olson PR since Olson acquired Chicago-based Dig Communications in late 2010, but the increasing prominence of digital, social and experiential work at the agency necessitated a change. Headquartered in Chicago, with offices in Minneapolis, New York and San Francisco, Olson Engage’s clients include MillerCoors, Wrigley, and Kraft Foods, among others. (Release)

Ogilvy Public Relations (Ogilvy PR) announced that Suanne Buggy has joined the Sacramento office of Ogilvy PR West as vice president. Suanne will lend her extensive healthcare experience to key clients including the California’s Health Benefit Exchange, Covered California. Buggy joins Ogilvy PR with nearly 15 years experience in public policy, healthcare and foreign affairs. Most recently she was the senior communications officer for the California HealthCare Foundation. Previously she served as an sssistant secretary in the California Health and Human Services Agency and was a department deputy director in the California Department of Public Health. (Release)

Coinciding with zcomm‘s 24th year in business, the national PR and marketing agency has moved its headquarters from Bethesda, Maryland to Washington, DC. zcomm’s new address is: 910 17th Street, NW, Suite 1190, Washington, DC, 20006. As zcomm moved offices, it has expanded its staff to handle a wider scope of work involving healthcare, consumer, environmental and military industries. zcomm is a Marketing Communications agency and provides an unique mix of PR, marketing and media services that span news and promotions to reach niche and national audiences where they live, work and play. A certified Women’s Business Enterprise and Women-Owned Small Business, zcomm services corporate, government, associations and non-profit organizations. (Release) Read more