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Posts Tagged ‘PRWeb’

More on Vocus’ New PRWeb Social/Search ‘Enhancements’

This week Vocus announced new updates to its PRWeb service, so we’ll take a minute to review. After adding security measures to prevent fraudulent press releases, the company made some tweaks to its product in the interest of more fully “integrating” social and search into the press release experience. A recent study finding that people spend “27 percent of their time on social media, in contrast to about 3 percent spent on news sites” re-emphasizes the importance of making every release as social and sharable as possible.

Here are images provided by Vocus:

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Mashable, Others Run With Dubious Bitcoin Press Release

We love Mashable for giving us up-to-the-minute tech news, but a recent snafu shows us that they are not immune to the “reporting on a less-than-accurate press release” phenomenon.

Here’s the deal: “bitcoin” is a new kind of digital currency that’s popping up all over the news. The appeal behind the product is the ability to deposit, exchange and spend money without going through a bank (ICYMI, people aren’t too keen on banks right now). In Europe, which is still suffering through the aftershocks of the latest economic crisis, more and more people have become interested in the bitcoin concept — and yesterday several sources including Mashable reported on this press release announcing entrepreneur Jeff Berwick‘s plans to open the “world’s first bitcoin ATM machine” in Cyprus, the country hardest hit by the current crisis. (Note: “plans” is the key word in that sentence.)

The problem? The ATM featured in the video below is not the one mentioned in the PRWeb release — and it wasn’t created by Jeff Berwick.

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PR Stunts: Fake Study Links Fox News to Low IQs

Fox News ChannelIt was a headline destined to simultaneously inspire a dozen highfalutin op-eds and a million bitchy comments: Fox News Viewers Are the Dumbest. One problem, though: it was what we in the media world call “a bunch of BS.”

Here’s the funny thing: the “story” wasn’t some sort of stunt pulled by MSNBC or another one of Fox’s many ideological opponents in the so-called “lamestream media.”

No, this little bit of fakery came from the inside—its source, according to a Huffington Post follow-up, appears to be a longtime “PR guru” and dedicated Republican who wants his party of choice to loosen its ties to the Fox News brand in the interest of its future electoral fortunes. See, the purpose of the “study” wasn’t to call Republicans dumber than Democrats: it was to insinuate that conservative Americans who choose not to watch the Fox News Channel are smarter than those who do.

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Is PRWeb Just Spamming the Whole Internet Now?

Spam adYesterday we ran a cautionary tale about how some shady stock trader fooled almost everyone on the Internet (and made a bunch of easy money) by penning a PRWeb release about a non-existent Google acquisition and manipulating stock prices for a couple of hours. In asking the Big Questions, we wondered whether readers place too much faith in digital press releases and how much we should blame PRWeb itself for the mixup.

Last night, the SearchEngineLand blog followed up, exploring the issue with relish in a post titled “How PRWeb Helps Distribute Crap Into Google & News Sites”. Fun!

We’re not out to besmirch the Vocus/PRWeb brand: We’ve used it, and we’re fairly sure the vast majority of our readers have too. But blogger Danny Sullivan wonders whether PRWeb truly has the power to review all press releases and ensure their “integrity”, and we share his skeptical curiosity.

Of course, distribution is the service’s key selling point—for a one-time fee, reps can ensure that their releases will appear on a wide range of sites both mainstream and obscure/legally dubious. We’ll say this, though: The fact that official “press releases” hyping “Lowest Price Viagra” from “LICENSED and LEGAL European online pharmacy” moved through PRWeb’s filter intact and ended up on the websites of otherwise respectable “distributor” publications like The Houston Chronicle may tell you something about the intensity of the organization’s fact-checking process.

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Everyone Fooled by Fake Google Press Release

PRWebIn an almost comic case of pretty much everybody getting it wrong, a score of major publishers ran with a big-news press release that turned out to be fake–and the incident now looks more and more like an old-fashioned financial crime.

As if to offer further proof that anyone can use PRWeb, some shady individual with an interest in making a quick, illegal buck wrote and released a post announcing that Google had just acquired ICOA, a “neutral host” broadband wi-fi provider, for $400 million. If true, this announcement would have been something of a big deal signifying Google’s desire to move deeper into the competitive world of Internet service providers. Yet no one bothered to fact-check the release (probably because ICOA isn’t a big name), and now much of the Internet has egg on its face.

What was this funny business all about? In a follow-up email, ICOA’s CEO guessed that “a stock promoter with a dubious interest is disseminating wrong, false and misleading info in the PR circles”. Sounds like someone living in the notoriously lawful land of Aruba wanted to spark a short-lived bump in ICOA’s stock price—and according to a Buzzfeed follow-up report, said individual may have earned six digits’ worth of easy profits by briefly pushing the company’s share price up from one penny to five. We’re not terribly familiar with stock trader lingo, but we’re fairly sure this one falls under “fraud.”

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New PR Tools from MediaVantage, PRWeb, Business Wire, and Havas

MediaVantage has announced enhancements to its online monitoring offering, including additional social media content and tonality scoring. For additional detail about the latest offering, check out the video after the jump.

PRWeb has partnered with Hearst Media Services in the San Francisco Bay area (outlets like the San Francisco Chronicle) to offer additional marketing services to the media company’s advertisers. Offered as GateList, PRWeb and its SEO services have now been added to the marketing options.

Business Wire has introduced an enhanced version of its media monitoring service, NewsTrak Clips. The service will now offer 3D charts and graphs for measurement purposes, options for a branded newsletter created with clips, and other options.

Havas has a new tool, The Flightdeck, that allows users to track online sentiment around their brand and the influence of those who are commenting. Data is pulled from a number of sources including Sysomos. The Flightdeck was developed by Havas firms Cake and EHS 4D Group.

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Tools Round Up: Ketchum, Vocus, Gleanster, and more

Image from Pictela

Ketchum has launched the Well-Connected Checkup, a research tool that identifies a brand’s health and wellness traits, such as competitive strengths and weakness. The information is meant to help brands assess their influence in the space and with target audiences.

Vocus has introduced its Winter ’11 product platform, which includes on-screen filtering of results, analytics dashboards that can be customized, and distribution enhancements through the new PRWeb platform.

Gleanster, a site providing market research and analysis for tech-enabled companies, has launched. Among the topics covered by the site’s initial reports are social media marketing and monitoring.

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Vocus CMO: We’ve Got $100M In The Bank, Which Gives Us ‘Ability To Look For Acquisitions’

billwagner.jpg

It seems that everyone and their brother is trying to get into the PR services market as of late. One company that has been in the game since 1999 is PR software company Vocus (NasdaqGM: VOCS). CMO William R. Wagner told PRNewser today the company is “still growing” throughout 2009.

Vocus has approximately $100 million cash on hand (Vocus’ Q3 earnings show $100,650,000 to be exact), which gives the company “the ability to look for acquisitions,” he said. Potential acquisitions could include international expansion, a “tech buy” or a “roll up” or “customer buy” in which the company would acquire a similar service or company for their customer base.

Vocus acquired press release distribution company PRWeb in August, 2006 for $28 million, consisting of $20.8 million in cash and 494,543 shares of Vocus common stock. Sources tell PRNewser PRWeb had also received interest at the time from PRNewswire and Business Wire. Wagner said PRWeb now accounts for about 15 to 20% of Vocus’ revenue.

RELATED: Vocus Announces Q3 Earnings: Revenue up 5%