Last week, I had the honor of representing PRSA at an American Conference Institute panel on managing social media crises in the digital age. Joining me on the panel were three whip smart PR execs in Sandy D’Elosua (Front Burner Brands), John Moran (Schwartz MSL) and Jenny Dervin (JetBlue Airways Corporation).
Our full presentation is embedded below, but let me just say that my commentary paled in comparison to what my fellow panelists offered. Especially Ms. Dervin, vice president of corporate communications at what may be the epicenter for crisis communications management in the digital age: JetBlue. Continue reading
Remember when every blog post and article in AdAge and Mashable was about how great Twitter was for marketers? That seems so 2009, doesn’t it? When was the last time you read a big story on how Twitter is grabbing marketers’ attentions and clients’ interests?
It’s just not happening much anymore. And, as we all know, if something is hot in marketing, we’ll talk it up endlessly, analyze its benefits and potential downfalls and examine every little nook and cranny of what makes something the current/next big thing.
And yet none of that is happening around Twitter. At least not on the scale it was six months ago, and certainly not on the scale of Facebook. Continue reading
When the Columbia Journalism Review and ProPublica examined the growing value of public relations and its relationship with journalism, the scope of the piece, and the reaction it received from the journalism community were fairly predictable. A rousing chorus of “PR has too much influence” over [fill in the blank] seemed to fill the comments of both CJR.org and ProPublica’s website.
This notion was further advanced in July when New York Times Public Editor Arthur Brisbane explored the role of public relations professionals working with journalists in a blog post titled “PR Professionals: Bane or Boon?”
The underlying sentiment in both seems to be that as journalism continues to shed thousands of its craftsmen, while public relations grows rapidly — both in stature and the number of practitioners — there is an overt level of influence being exerted by the latter over the former. And the world is just bad because of that. Continue reading
Recently, I got married to my beloved Laura. As newlyweds, life is great. But like any relationship, it’s a lot of work, a whole lot of give-and-take and, yes, it can be stressful at times.
Hmm … sounds a lot like managing a PR campaign. To continue PRBC’s theme of exploring five ways in which PR is like __________, I thought I’d address the five ways that PR campaigns are like getting married. Continue reading
Could the celebrity plug — that beloved loathed centerpiece of many celebrity PR campaigns — be going the way of the Dodo? If the UK’s Guardian newspaper is any indication, it may be. And this could have profound effects on public relations.
To get the background on this movement, you have to go back to a somewhat obscure point in The Guardian’s updated editorial code. According to PRWeek, the revised code includes a new clause addressing the inclusion of promotional material in editorial. By its updated code, The Guardian — one of the world’s most influential newspapers — no longer allows its reporters to “promote products” in order to secure interviews with a PR pro’s client. Continue reading
Dear PR colleagues: Pls do not pitch earthquake-related stories unless you rep an earthquake preparedness company/expert.
I wrote that tweet Wednesday afternoon in response to a tweet from Forbes media reporter Jeff Bercovici that he, like every other reporter it seems, had received an irrelevant earthquake-related pitch from a PR pro.
And Friday afternoon, I tweeted this as Hurricane Irene beared down on the East Coast:
Oh wow. Bad PR RT @ShopWiki_Hlth_B Be prepared for Hurricane Irene with this awesome waterproof mascara by @LorealParis
*Headshaking* Far be it from me to fault my many excellent colleagues in the PR business, but let me be blunt, fellow PR pros:
Please stop being stupid with your pitches. Continue reading
Unless you’ve been in a cave the past two weeks, then you know things aren’t looking too good right now for the economy. It’s yo-yoing like crazy, which has investors, CEOs and entrepreneurs fretting.
Friday’s Wall Street Journal reported that America’s entrepreneur class shrunk during the Great Recession (despite predictions that it was rapidly growing because so many people were out of work). And The Financial Times reported that business leaders’ confidence in their industries and the global economy has deteriorated sharply.
But how well is PR holding up throughout this fracas? Continue reading
Another week, another PR crisis. This one comes by way of the Quixotic, pie-in-the-sky Silicon Valley start-up Airbnb, which allows people to rent their apartments, a bedroom or even their living room floor to complete strangers, with little to no background check of that person’s character. Think about how absurd that concept sounds.The crisis in question involved a San Francisco woman, known only as EJ, who blogged that she was the victim of a heinous property crime by a guest who arranged to stay there through Airbnb. In what is being called “#ranscackgate” (sidebar: Another “gate”? Really?), Airbnb has, perhaps not surprisingly, totally flubbed its response. Continue reading
“We accomplished what we set out to accomplish.”
Keep that quote in the back of your mind as you read skim pick apart the main points of this post. I’ll tell you who uttered this seemingly innocuous statement in a minute, but first, some background information:
It seems that the California Milk Processor Board — you probably know it as the folks who brought us the ubiquitous “Got Milk?” campaign and its many impostors — has gotten itself into some social media hot water over its most recent campaign.
What could be so unseemly about a milk ad, you ask? Well, when you try to use something that is wholly unfunny (like milk) as a way to poke fun of something that is also not humorous (e.g., women struggling with PMS) into an ad to sell more of your product, people tend to take offense at that. Or just get really annoyed. Continue reading