Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Trading Up The Chain: How To Make National News in 3 Easy Steps (Excerpt from Trust Me, I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator)

Trading Up The Chain: How To Make National News in 3 Easy Steps (Excerpt from Trust Me, I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator)

I enjoyed clicking through this interesting Slideshare presentation on how to manipulate the media into giving you national coverage. The author really seems to understand the ins and outs of how the media works.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on if you think he has taken the “deception meter” too far in pursuit of his goals?


On Hiatus for a While…

In case anyone stumbles upon this blog, I just wanted to leave a note that after two years of supporting clients whose missions were specifically tied to social media, my client since October 2009 does not have such a focus. As such, I have been more focused on traditional strategic communications (e.g., website content, speeches, event planning, newsletters).

Hence, I have not kept up with this blog since learning social media best practices and trends is completely on my own free time — which is very limited as a new dad 🙂

I hope to be back to share more in the future!

Has social media changed the amount you communicate face to face?

In a recent International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) pulse survey, the majority of respondents said that, despite the explosion of social media tools, the amount of face-to-face interaction in their organizations has remained the same throughout the past year. The survey was conducted by the IABC Research Foundation earlier this month and received 218 responses from communication professionals.

The survey found that:

  • 63% of respondents said that face-to-face interaction in their organization has remained about the same.
  • 16% said there has been more overall face-to-face interaction in their organization.
  • 12% said there has been less overall face-to-face interaction in their organization.
  • 8% said there has never been significant face-to-face interaction in their organization.

What do you think? Have social media tools changed the amount of face-to-face interaction in your organization? What about in your personal life?

Automatic Retweets from Washington Nationals — Good business practice or a big gamble?

Are companies taking a big risk by automatically re-tweeting Twitter content?

I usually try not to complain, but last night I felt like venting because it took WMATA an hour and a half each way for me to travel from the Vienna Metro Station to the Navy Yard Metro Station to attend a Washington Nationals game (and, yes, the Cubbies did win – so life was good).

When I got home, I made a vow that I would rather have to fight DC traffic and pay for parking than ever have an experience like that again. I logged into Twitter a little before midnight and tweeted, “I’m NEVER taking the Metro to a Washington Nationals game again. 1.5 hours each way from Vienna metro station to game.”

Then this morning I was really surprised to see that the Washington Nationals’ Twitter account had automatically retweeted my post an hour afterward…

Nats Twitter

Nats Twitter

At first – for about half a second – I was afraid some underpaid, bloody-eyed Nats marketing guy was up at 1am Sunday morning looking for people referring to his employer so he could retweet them. I thought to myself, “Wow – the Nats sure are committed to engaging their stakeholders through social media. And they’re so transparent that they’re even willing to retweet complaints about how hard it is to get to one of their games.” Then I started thinking they might have the evil ulterior motive of stealing WMATA’s customers in order to sell more parking spaces.

But, no, they had definitely automatically retweeted my complaint to their 750 followers (much less than the 12,000 following my Cubbies!). In fact, on the Nats’ Twitter page, they even retweeted one user who noticed this trend as well, who wrote, “If you need to build your RT file, just mention Washington Nationals!”

Is this a good business practice?

While this is transparent, is it worth the risk?

What if I said something really bad – like trying to start a Nats boycott?

Have you seen any other examples of this – or other strange Twitter business practices?

11 Questions to Ask Yourself When Writing Your Resume

I wanted to share this great article with you from Lily Whiteman — a public affairs officer at the National Science Foundation and author of “How to Land a Top-Paying Federal Job.”

This is some powerful advice on resume writing…

I was recently consulted by the communications director of one of the most powerful members of the Senate because his job search wasn’t producing pay dirt. A quick scan of his résumé identified the likely cause: Reading it was about as impressive as reading a stranger’s ho-hum “to do” list. If I hadn’t already known what a skilled, productive and creative power-broker he is, I never would have known it from his résumé.

Here are questions to ask yourself, to help you define your achievements in compelling terms:

  • Why is my work important?
  • How have I improved my organization’s reputation to internal and external stakeholders?
  • How have I saved time or money, or streamlined processes?
  • Which of my achievements am I most proud of, worked mightily to accomplish or earned recognition for, such as awards to me or my organization, promotions, bonuses or praise?
  • How do I do my work better or differently from peers or more junior professionals? What do I offer that no one else does?
  • How would my organization’s services, resources or morale suffer if I had never worked there?
  • How have I shown initiative and gone the extra mile?
  • How have I wisely used my judgment, discretion or creativity?
  • What am I an expert in?
  • When have I contributed to high-pressure, high-profile, high-dollar or high-priority projects?
  • Which of my accomplishments warrant superlatives like the first, the only, the best, the fastest, the highest rated, the most or the strongest?

You don’t have to be the first climber up Mount Everest to have an important superlative under your belt. Automating a process, creating a new Web site, developing new training, creating a document or completing a project in record time warrant superlatives.

When writing assessments or resumes, remember to focus on RESULTS more than roles, responsibilities and processes!

What questions would you add to this list?

The end of journalism as we know it?

A blog from described how the Air Force recently refuted reports that its GPS technology is failing. What was interesting is that it did so by going straight to the public… via Twitter.

The author, Mitch Wagner, concludes his blog by saying:

Social media allows government to take its message directly to the people, bypassing journalists. Much of journalism has always consisted of “he said she said” reporting. The journalist goes to a government official to get a statement, dutifully transcribes it, runs to an opponent to get an opposing statement, and then brings both those statements to the readers. Social media helps put he-said-she-said journalists out of a job, because the government official — and his opponent — can get their message directly to the people themselves. That means journalists need to concentrate on going beyond the public record and provide analysis and investigation.

Is he right? Do you see Twitter — or other social media tools — eventually changing the face of journalism (and, hence, media relations) as we now know it?

Question: How do we genuinely care about marketing audiences?

A recent blog by Jason Falls entitled, “Marketing without faking it – A case study” describes a visit Jason made to Austin, TX. One of his followers on Twitter — a restaurant marketer — offered him a free lunch at his restaurant when he heard Jason was in town.

Jason writes:

“I anticipated I would have a really nice case study to write about relative to targeted outreach. For a restaurant to target 20-30 influential bloggers, filmmakers or musicians in Austin for SXSW and invite them in to try the food, is pretty smart. Even if only five or six take them up on the offer, they’re going to post Twitter messages, invite some fellow attendees who will do the same and so on. If the restaurant were able to land someone with a vast network, they could literally have lines wrapped around the building to get in just to eat with a cewebrity.”

But it turns out this wasn’t a marketing gimmick. The marketer was buying Jason lunch because she genuinely wanted to.

“She said she thought to herself, ‘I know that I guy. I follow his tweets every day.” So she invited me. That’s it. There was no real strategy behind. She was just being nice to someone whose blog she reads and Tweets she follows.'”

From this experience, Jason said,

“The learning we can take from this is that when a business communicates like human being, connects with a customer and treats them like they would treat a friend, even the smallest gestures can reap the biggest rewards. Deborah’s outreach wasn’t a carefully planned strategic effort orchestrated to drive buzz. There was no market research involved. Deborah took off her marketing hat for a minute and provided a social gesture of thanks to someone whose blog she read and Twitter stream she followed. Even though the gesture ended in someone trying her product, she did it out of basic generosity.”

So my question is this… How can we genuinely reach out to people on a human level without them feeling like they’re one of our “targeted stakeholders?” It’s time to bring back face-to-face (F2F) communication where possible. What are some ways we can do this without making people into metrics for our clients?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Blog Stats

  • 2,538 hits