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Recently I sat in on a corporate workshop on the ‘Role of Gender in Workplace Communication’ and it really got me to thinking about the importance gender values and communication methods should pla...
Considering gender predominant values can improve efficiency of a social media strategy.
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An exciting part of running a business is communicating with your target audience – creating and sharing marketing collateral, engaging on social media, and sending emails to subscribers. However, it is possible to over-communicate – so it’s important to tune in to how your audience reacts to these types of communication in order to determine just how much is enough to fulfill, but not exceed, their expectations. It’s true: frequency improves compliance. However, you don’t want to annoy your loyal audience by repeatedly sending out communication to reach those who haven’t taken action yet.
Successful social media efforts can result in a dramatic increase of positive recognition for a business or brand. Many of these strategies, such as posting engaging updates or replying to a follower’s comment, require no additional resources. However, there are several aspects of the most successful social media marketing campaigns that are easier to accomplish with a few trendy resources.
Why is having a content strategy so important? Social media is just media now. The convergence is no longer a possibility. It is a reality. According to the 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks study by NTEN and M+R, nonprofit Facebook pages grew by 46 percent last year and nonprofit Twitter audiences rose by 264 percent. The need to feed the beast with content is only growing more important.
The struggle to create effective content strategies for social networks either comes from not having enough time to devote to social media or not having enough content to post. Truth be told, most nonprofits have an overwhelming amount of content on their websites or other communication channels that can be easily repurposed for social. Below are 10 tips for managing your time and dealing with the problem of feeding your organization’s social media beasts.
Think of the planet’s best human being. Who are you thinking of? Pope Francis? Your parents? Justin Bieber? According to Business Insider, it’s Mark Zuckerberg. Why? Because he’s planning to donate $1 billion (less than 5 percent of his massive fortune) to charity. While it’s certainly welcome, philanthropy is far more insidious than it appears at first sight. It tends to lead to fawning press coverage, but little in the way of good reform. Worse, it perpetuates the myth that society’s problems can be solved by the rich and powerful.
Great article. It explains why charity is a very profitable activity for the rich. It works as a humanitarian mask hiding the underlying economic exploitation.
You're about to launch your 2014 communications plan. But are you wondering: “Are we normal? Are we doing the right thing?” Kivi Leroux Miller's newly released 2104 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report helps answer ...
The idea that people buy your products and/or services as an emotional reaction is not exactly true. To say that people will not buy anything from anyone if they are not touched in some way emotionally is true. However, at the end of the day, when it comes to the decision to actually purchase, it is rarely a purely emotional decision.
Most people think creativity is divinely-inspired, unpredictable and bestowed on only a lucky few. There are a lot of popular myths about business creativity, yet none of them have much scientific evidence. A new study based on the latest research-- "The Myths of Creativity," by David Burkus -- helps demystify what's behind the forces and processes that drive innovation.
Burkus' research supports what I have always believed -- that with the proper training, anyone with a common-sense mindset grounded in reality can deliver creative and innovative new ideas, projects, processes, and programs.
In scientific research on what makes articles go viral, amusing stories were shared more frequently than less amusing ones.
Berger, who is now a professor of marketing at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, worked with another Penn professor, Katherine Milkman, to put his interest in content-sharing to an empirical test. Together, they analyzed just under seven thousand articles that had appeared in the Times in 2008, between August 30th and November 30th, to try to determine what distinguished pieces that made the most-emailed list. After controlling for online and print placement, timing, author popularity, author gender, length, and complexity, Berger and Milkman found that two features predictably determined an article’s success: how positive its message was and how much it excited its reader. Articles that evoked some emotion did better than those that evoked none—an article with the headline “BABY POLAR BEAR’S FEEDER DIES” did better than “TEAMS PREPARE FOR THE COURTSHIP OF LEBRON JAMES.” But happy emotions (“WIDE-EYED NEW ARRIVALS FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE CITY”) outperformed sad ones (“WEB RUMORS TIED TO KOREAN ACTRESS’S SUICIDE”).
Too many executives and boards continue to take a reactive rather than strategic approach to risk and reputation management
The regulatory responses to the many scandals of the past dozen years (Enron, WorldCom, Siemens, Wall Street and Fleet Street) should have curbed the excesses that caused them. But they didn’t.
The endless parade of troubles continues – if it isn’t one industry it’s another, if it isn’t one company it’s another, if it isn’t one hedge fund it’s another, if it isn’t one CEO it’s another, if it isn’t one insider trader it’s another, if it isn’t one briber it’s another.
What is the reason for all this malfeasance and recidivism? A root cause is that so many C-suites and boards don’t understand and have not adopted a strategic approach to governance or risk and reputation management. Risk and reputation management requires constant protection, care and feeding – it needs a strategic long-term approach, not reactive responses.
A strategic approach identifies stupid risk, unknown risk and illegal risk. A good system creates an early warning system to prevent serious reputation damage. It will also prepare an organisation for the scandal that will inevitably happen. It will build and embed better processes in the system that will curb or thwart bad behaviour.
Proactive approach to risk, CEO accountability and an empowered reputation officer are the building blocks of effective risk and reputation management strategy.
It’s six years since Nick Davies came up with the term “churnalism” and denounced the cosy relationship of the news media and the public relations industry in his book Flat Earth News.
Davies, backed by analysis from Cardiff University, detected alarming similarities between selected news stories and press releases, which in some cases had been published almost verbatim by the Fourth Estate. “I work in a corrupted profession,” complained the author.
Since then, through his work in The Guardian, Davies has led the way in exposing Fleet Street phone hacking. But neither that scandal, nor the publication of Flat Earth News, has strengthened journalism in terms of its relationship with PR. Churnalism may not have been the worst of it.
When Davies was researching his book, PRs were focused on permeating the messages of clients through press and television, what is known as “earned media”. Today our information culture has been so transformed by social media and rapid advances in mobile technology that PR strategy is often to bypass traditional news outlets by self-generating content that is delivered directly to the public.
Rather than seeking the approval of journalists, the PR industry and its clients would rather reduce the press to the margins.
A clear perspective on the relatioship between journalism and PR
Gough believes that concerns for the environmental and social impacts of a business should not be confined to some separate department. They must to be integrated into all of an organisation’s working practices.
To this end, The Crown Estate, the £8bn property portfolio owned by the Sovereign that pays all its surpluses to the UK Treasury, has created one of the UK’s first integrated annual reports. Rather than producing separate reports on finance and sustainability, The Crown Estate has combined the information and presents it in one over-arching document.
The 2013 integrated report, entitled Imagine, has received the ultimate accolade, according to Gough – people actually enjoy reading it.
“Annual Reports and Sustainability Reports often take a lot of time to produce internally, but they aren’t read cover to cover by investors and stakeholders. Managing agents and stakeholders have come back to us this year saying they enjoyed reading the integrated report, which is the best compliment we could get,” he says.
Gough believes the greatest benefit of integrated reporting is that it has forced the organisation to change the way it thinks and behaves. “You can’t do integrated reporting without having integrated thinking,” he says. “It is no longer enough just to have a sustainability strategy and a business strategy – you can’t deliver two strategies at a time. So we have ripped up our sustainability strategy.
Back when the world was less interconnected, companies protected their reputations using traditional means like word of mouth, print media, snail mail and television advertising. The speed of today’s digital environment, thanks to mobile devices and social media, requires businesses to be almost instantaneously responsive to negative publicity about their brands. The bigger the business, the more mentions it generates in cyberspace. Although businesses are getting savvier about handling viral customer complaints delivered through social media, they may not be as quick to react to a damaging online review tucked deep in a local directory.
A reputation management firm helps a business to be proactive about guarding its online presence. By evaluating the competition, monitoring negative publicity and taking timely and appropriate action, reputation management firms manage problems as they happen and prevent new problems. Of course, not all businesses have the resources to hire a reputation management firm. Companies that want to do this work in-house should start by focusing on five essential online priorities.
Affect, a PR and social media firm specializing in technology, healthcare and professional services, shares five New Year's resolutions businesses should consider for 2014.These resolutions reflect lessons learned from the past and opportunities in the year to come. The company's experience working with businesses in various industries has inspired these resolutions across social media, marketing and public relations.
Brands that people aren’t immediately excited to talk about—if they sell say, insurance or tampons—have figured out ways to make social media work.
In this world of tight deadlines, limited budgets and super-fast turnarounds, the process of proofreading is something that can often fall by the wayside. It’s an indulgence; the client will check the work anyway; we just don’t have the time! But proofreading – proper proofreading – can be essential to effective quality control. Here are some top tips…
Antony Jenkins may have tried to do the right thing at Barclays by waiving his own payout, but even the bonus-hungry City is shocked by the bankers' shameful behaviour
In reputation, actions speak louder than words.
Humor is effective in marketing because it humanizes and surprises. You can play it straight and write a blog post that clearly and emphatically states how your computer router can handle up to 6.4 terabits of data. Or you can get the point across and create something relatable, charming and (of course!) shareable. Cisco did this by positioning its decidedly impersonal router as the perfect "forever" gift for Valentine's Day: "Nothing says I love you like the Cisco ASR 9000." The former is boring. The latter infuses the message and brand with a human element that's anything but expected.
For small, scrappy brands, "humor can help you stand out in a crowded world," says the brains behind the router ad, Tim Washer, Cisco's senior marketing manager of social media and a comedy writer whose credits include Late Show With David Letterman and Saturday Night Live.
A common refrain from communications agency leaders is that the quality of candidates coming out of university programs does not meet the needs of the modern PR firm.
Ketchum's Rob Flaherty recently addressed this issue in a blog post on the PRWeek website and outlined the course modules he would like to see on university curriculums. It was a very useful insight into the skills young people need if they are to make it in the real world of modern communications.
Education programs tend to lag behind the “real world” almost by definition, in that they are scoped and planned at least 18 months to two years in advance of the actual course starting. Courses are also often taught by people who are coming toward the end of their careers and want to give something back and keep busy in their later years.
This is no bad thing. They are people who have years of experience to share and practical lessons to impart to their students. That is the nature of education and there are lots of benefits built in to this structure.
But the nature of modern business, and especially PR, marketing, and communications, is that it moves with such incredible pace it is difficult for the education community to keep up. Also, the boundaries between the different marketing disciplines are increasingly blurring and can't easily be defined in the nice neat boxes that typically make up a university curriculum.
The Economist recently wrote an article about the PR profession and how so many get it wrong. We explore how to do media relations the right way. (Media Relations: Why The Economist Thinks We Have it Wrong via Spin Sucks - By Gini Dietrich ...
If you have had your ear to the ground in the world of startups, you have probably heard the phrase "content is king." Indeed, many industry pros are pointing to content entering a golden age and companies are taking notice. Yahoo is bolstering its editorial strategy (including bringing Katie Couric on board), Vox Media continues to expand the companies under its umbrella and BuzzFeed may be taking over the world (well, not really). But with this explosion of content, there is a lot of room for sub-par "meh."
For many, to rise above the crowd, there needs to be a focus on storytelling (another huge buzzword). Not only does it creates an urge within the reader to read more about what is written, but it can also boost your brand and presence. Plus, customers are more apt to feel a connection with your company.
Until a few days ago, Michael Bay made headlines for the movies he directed, mainly blockbuster, action flicks like those in the Transformers series. But now he’s making headlines and trending on Twitter for a very different reason: his embarrassing moment at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES).
Bay was hired by Samsung to speak in front of CES participants and media to promote Samsung’s new curved HDTVs. When he went to deliver his speech, the teleprompter failed. Thrown off, flustered, and unable to ad lib, Bay walked off stage, leaving Samsung Executive Vice President on stage to apologize for him.
Both Samsung and Bay are being pummeled with criticism and are in major clean-up mode.
What went wrong from a communications perspective?
Bay’s speech was entirely scripted, so when the teleprompter failed, he lost his crutch. He initially said “I’ll just wing this” but clearly proved unable to do so. The problem with scripted speeches that either haven’t been practiced or that rely on technology to be delivered is that there’s little room for error. While the teleprompter structure can be helpful, it’s very constraining and not forgiving when issues arise.
What can we learn from this very public communication incident?
Preparation, practice and authenticity are the main ingredients of a good speech and the key to gracefully overcome unforeseen situations.
Une campagne de communication peut avoir trois résultats possibles : améliorer la visibilité de votre marque et, par la même occasion, la réputation de votre entreprise, passer complètement inaperçue, ou encore se transformer en cauchemar pour l’équipe de communication ou l’agence à cause d’une avalanche de commentaires négatifs (la réputation de l’entreprise pourrait alors être affectée). Dans cet article j’aimerais résumer quelques points qui font que les campagnes de communication sont un échec ou un succès, en me basant sur des exemples de bonnes et moins bonnes campagnes de communication.
Examples of good and bad communication campaigns and the lessons that can be learned from each.
Here are my observations on the past 12 months, which has seen the PR industry move to a much more important position in the communications sector.
Richard Edelman closes his analysis reminding the importance of his father values for all PR professionals:
"First, you are to focus on the client work, not the money (that will come as a natural by-product of excellence).
Second, you should be humble and hardworking, never satisfied, always learning.
Third, you should be entrepreneurial, trying new things, getting up when you fall down to try again.
Fourth, you must be both global and local, because our business relies on cultural mores.
Fifth, it is about the team, not the individual, about “we” and not “I.”
Great ideas to start the new year!
"13" was an unlucky year for a number of people trying to make their case with the media. And at 15-Seconds we enjoyed pointing out some of the best examples of mis-communication and offering the occasional tip on how they could have done better.As the year draws to an end -- here are ten of our favorite blog posts from the year almost gone by:
Good examples of what not to do in media relations. Some of them hilarious, some others tragic
For two years, maybe more, I’ve helped real estate agents, writers, and entrepreneurs create strategies for using Facebook for business. I’ve read countless stories and books on the subject, I’ve discussed editorial calendars, the benefits of photos, links, videos, private pages, Facebook groups etc. I’ve been to seminars, I’ve spoken at conferences. I’ve immersed myself in this platform but I’ve never liked it. Perhaps it was its emergence from a college networking program that made it always seem sort of clique-ish and invasive to me but more often I think it was because I had become accustomed to having a blog (or in my case, a series of websites, and blogs over the years) to codify my thoughts and journal. Facebook just seemed less interesting to me and to be fair, I never really got MySpace either.
Now I’m in the position of advising people that social media is more than Facebook and pivoting my own social strategy. There are a few reasons for this. The first is, as I always tell people, invest most of your time in the platforms you have control over (your website) and use the others to serve the hub. Social media is about distribution and communication and it’s always evolving. The second is that Facebook itself is being more and more restrictive with its algorithms for business pages. It was always bad but the latest changes make it nearly impossible for businesses to show up in feeds without paying for it. The feed itself is supposed to serve you more of what you like but instead what really happens is the filter bubble effect that cuts people off from things that they might like intermittently but not consistently. The third is of course, that people are moving on. For teens, Facebook is where their parents hang out. For early adopters, Facebook is mostly passé. It is terrible on mobile, which is where most of us are now, on phones and tablets. It’s beginning to feel dated.