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Posts Tagged ‘PR Daily’

No, Brands Shouldn’t Pay for Blog Mentions

This week PR Daily posed an important question: Should brands pay for blog mentions?

Before the requisite “this is a complicated issue that will affect different parties differently and we want to avoid making overgeneralizations” statement, we’ll give you the short answer: no.

Don’t get mad before you read the qualifiers: well over 50% of the public turns to editorial sites for info on products, so if a prominent blogger truly enjoys/approves of your client’s product, any related content is PR gold. But you already knew that.

Here’s the rub: As readers and writers of blogs, we can tell you that if you are a blogger who consumers turn to for “unbiased” insights, they will begin to question your credibility the minute they discover that you were paid to promote something even if you’ve made that relationship clear to everyone who visits your site (which you’re legally required to do anyway).

No, bloggers aren’t held to such strict standards of objectivity as traditional journalists. But paid endorsements can never be 100% “sincere,” so their value is limited. The conflict of interest between blogger and patron ensures this fact.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t try to get bloggers to promote your client, but there are some big caveats:

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Infographic: The Current State of Social Media Teams

Yesterday Ragan’s PR Daily published the results of a study that most PR folks will find interesting: it concerned the current state of social media teams and the changing expectations of brands/firms in the social sphere.

More than 2,000 communications professionals participated in the study, which yielded some unexpected results:

  • Only 5% of companies are “very satisfied” with their social campaigns
  • Most firms/brands want to measure social ROI more effectively but don’t feel like they have the time or the manpower
  • The vast majority (86%) of companies measure the success of social campaigns via likes and followers, not click-through rates or sales bumps

In other words, most brands and firms still don’t feel like they’ve mastered the social equation. And while they seem keen on devoting more time and resources to getting it right, they don’t plan to expand their teams significantly this year. Click through for the full infographic:

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Affect’s ‘New York Job Project’ Turns the Application Process Social

Current PR students and recent college grads: are you stressed about turning your great internships into a full-time entry-level gig? Do you embody the phrase “shameless self-promotion”? Are you an expert in all things social media? (Come on, you know you are.) If you answered “yes” to any of those three questions, then you may be an ideal candidate for Affect PR‘s “New York Job Project“–a program designed to simultaneously encourage talented applicants and promote the firm itself by “crowdsourcing” the hiring process.

This all started more than two years ago when Affect, a small-ish Manhattan firm, started the “New York Intern Project” because, according to president and founder Sandra Fathi, they were “having trouble attracting interns in one of the country’s most competitive markets.”

Applicants’ resumes often boasted of college gigs with brands like MTV, Def Jam and Glamourbut Affect wanted to find dedicated public relations professionals. Affect’s b2b (that’s “business to business”) services are crucial to the industry at large, but they’re also not quite as flashy as those big names–so Fathi created the intern project in order to “make [the internship] more attractive to people around the country.”

A quick look at 2011′s entries will tell you that the project worked better than expected.

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Tesla’s Elon Musk Still Thinks The New York Times Is Out To Get Him

Elon Musk, Tesla CEOOn Wednesday we advised Tesla founder/eccentric weirdo Elon Musk to stop insisting that The New York Times auto critic John Broder intentionally sabotaged his Model S test drive because he hates electric cars.

We are shocked to learn that Musk did not take our advice, instead releasing another lengthy statement in which he critiqued nearly every element of Broder’s highly detailed follow-up to his initial post.

We won’t get into the technical specifics as others have covered them extensively, but here’s a good example of the nature of this tit-for-tat showdown: Musk accuses Broder of driving in circles in order to intentionally run down the car’s battery; Broder says that he was simply trying to locate one of the company’s poorly-lit Supercharger stations. He said, she said.

Again, we understand Musk’s desire to protect his baby.

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Interview with Susan Young, Author of ‘The Badass Book of Social Media’

We recently had the opportunity to speak with Susan Young: journalist, media veteran, regular contributor to PR Daily, founder of media training firm Get in Front Communications and author of the new e-book The Badass Book of Social Media and Business Communication.

We discussed the rapid changes in the communications business and the steps PR professionals must take to stand out in this brave new social world.

Why did you write this book and how do you feel it can benefit PR professionals?

I worked as a radio news director and reporter for 10 years. I know what’s newsworthy, what makes a compelling story and how to present it. I also worked for New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman in the office of radio and television before starting my own PR/communications training company.

There have been so many questions flying around the industry and the market, especially from people who are relatively new to the field. I wrote the book to answer these questions.

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Why Startups Should Invest in PR

We’ve asked ourselves the question before: Should startup companies with shoestring budgets spend their crucial capital on public relations services?

Of course we always wanted to answer “yes”, but now we have some testimony to back that answer up. According to Ken Gaebler‘s recent PR Daily post, a PR investment “boosts a company’s chances of getting acquired”. He cites his own personal experience, writing that his own tech startup used PR services to help make the big sale–and that any emerging business that chooses to avoid PR firms could end up depressing the value of its own product.

Gaebler’s points:

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What Are America’s 10 ‘Most Hated’ Brands? And Why?

Lord VoldemortToday we came across a list of “America’s 10 Most Hated Companies” courtesy of Ragan’s PR Daily and 24/7 Wall Street, which compiled the worst of the worst based on “stock performance, employee and customer satisfaction, and management decisions.”

We were intrigued, so we figured we’d peruse the list and see what we could make of it. What are these brands, and what did they do to offend the American public (and their investors) so badly?

Here they are, along with our past and present theories on why they suck:

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Is PR a Job or a Lifestyle?

Full disclosure: As we grow more deeply connected to the PR world, we find ourselves checking our Twitter feeds right before we go to bed every night and right after we wake up every morning to see what’s exciting or irritating our colleagues in the industry. It’s tough to keep up with related developments when we’re not plugged in.

And of course we’re not the only ones who feel that way. Two related stories drew our attention this week: one naming “PR Executive” as the #5 most stressful job in the United States and one declaring that public relations cannot be a traditional 9 to 5 gig.

Seems like those two might be related, doesn’t it?

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‘Kentucky Kicks Ass’: Legitimate Campaign, PR Stunt, or Both?

Kentucky for KentuckyThe new year brought us a fun tale of a unique statewide rebranding campaign: According to PR Daily, the state of Kentucky no longer wants to rely on banjos, bourbon and fried chicken to drive tourist dollars. A group called Kentucky for Kentucky that claims to represent the commonwealth used the new year to unveil a brand-new slogan: “Kentucky Kicks Ass!”

While we got a chuckle out of this campaign, we were also skeptical. Would any state tourism board really approve such a ballsy tagline? Turns out we were right to wonder: While the project supposedly stemmed from an effort to crowdsource funding for a pro-Kentucky Super Bowl ad, state officials do not share the Internet’s enthusiasm for this PR stunt.

And now we learn (surprise, surprise) that Kentucky for Kentucky is the brainchild of three advertising executives who don’t mind making fun of themselves and don’t much care for their home state’s current slogan, the vaguely inspirational “Unbridled spirit”. They’d like everyone to know that they have no problem with the fact that Kentucky is best known for “KFC”, “horses”, “whiskey”, “marijuana”, George Clooney, Jonny Depp and “that chick in The Hunger Games“, because it’s still a great place to live, vacation and spend money. Oh, and they also have lots of fancy t-shirts for sale.

OK, so it was all a little prank. But it worked–and their video is kind of cool:

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Will PR ‘Own’ Social Media in 2013?

Pope Benedict sends his first tweetWho should be in charge of social media campaigns: marketing or PR? Where should that line lie–and why? We found ourselves fascinated by a couple of year-end PR Daily posts exploring these questions.

The first post predicted that, as more businesses begin to understand the risks and rewards of social media campaigns and the importance of maintaining a direct dialogue with the public, they will specifically request PR firms and departments to manage related accounts–and that PR pros will “emerge as trendsetters” in the social space.

Today’s follow-up post elaborates on that point as firm founder Summer Goodwin explains why she believes that PR will be the go-to discipline for future social media efforts. Her arguments, in a nutshell (or five):

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