Nov 1, 2007
csalomonlee

PRMeetsMarketing Weekly Articles: November 1, 2007

Here’s this week of interesting articles. Enjoy! 

What’s Your CEO’s Name? Seth Godin brings up a good point about the accessibility or permeability of a CEO to his/her customers. But since we only use the phone line for the fax, I guess I won’t have to worry about telemarketers in the future. Now, how do I get a hold of the Citibank CEO again… 

What’s the Story Morning Glory? I’ve been reading Collaborative Thinking from Mike Gotta. He has some interesting thoughts. His most recent post highlights the backstory on products and the relation to corporate responsibility. This highlights how transparency is becoming an important component of every facet of business; thereby, enabling consumers to trust and participate with your brand, company and product. 

What are You Doing on November 8? David Meerman Scott posted about this totally free event to hear from some of the best marketing gurus out there. Great way to get leads and phone charges for the sponsor, Conference Calls Unlimited. Heck, I actually remember the article, “A Brand Called You,” when it was first published in Fast Company. Does this date me? 

Leave out the Welcome Mat Allen Stern of CenterNetworks did an interesting test of the power of welcome. For those coming from social sites, Allen greeted them with a welcome [site name]. Through his test, he increased the number of  subscribers and ad clicks from these visitors. From a PR perspective, this raises some interesting questions in terms of how “social outreach” can have an impact on your client’s/company’s site traffic.  

Tweet Tweet – Be Sweet B.L. Ochman writes about some Twitter dos and don’ts. Why do I have a feeling more people will be following in her footsteps? Frankly, I haven’t started this and don’t know if I want to get mired into another time suck! =) 

Telling a Story Through Social Media Now Is Gone wrote how they posted a slide show from American Red Cross (I assume this is a client or someone is directly associated with the organization) regarding the recent fires in San Diego. The article highlights some thoughts before jumping into social media – all good PR tips. 

So You Want Face Time? I like MarketingSherpa – they provide good, basic insight on how to leverage new tools for marketing and PR. Today’s lesson – how to market yourself and your company on Facebook. Damn, this means I probably have to spend more time on Facebook, which I was trying to avoid from an online reputation perspective.   

Shorter Sentences Please I attended an internal seminar that said optimal sentence length was no more than 16 words. (16 words exact!) Mike Volpe of Small Business Hub highlights this for readability of online copy. Now to cut down my paragraph length pitches… 

Technorati Tags: blogging

Uncategorized
Oct 31, 2007
csalomonlee

Spam I Am, Green Eggs and Spam!

Spam

This can of worms got started with Chris Anderson’s post regarding his frustration with PR spam. David Meerman Scott chimes in his post about blocking PR folks as well.

As someone who tries not to send obvious form letters, this is both refreshing and disconcerting. Even good PR folks may not hit the mark all the time, so what happens – would they get blocked for a slightly off target pitch? At least my name wasn’t included. Phew! 

Technorati Tags: spam

Oct 30, 2007
csalomonlee

Where Dell Succeeds, Citibank Fails

Citibank Email

As people who have read my blog, I have a bone to pick with Citibank regarding their email marketing tactics and, in my opinion, poor customer service (see here and here). I still don’t understand how they are voted one of the best. 

Mack Collier at The Viral Garden wrote about Dell’s turnaround in the social medium. If only Citibank could follow suit.

Simple ways to provide better service and participate: 

  1. Monitor and respond to any posts about Citibank

  2. Respond to snail mail letters with a letter, email or phone call

  3. Provide an unsubscribe service for those who have cancelled accounts (FYI – I was required to change my profile settings to stop the emails which I can’t do since I cancelled my email account, hence the problem) 

  4. Allow your customer service representatives to automatically cancel email notices instead of quoting a 30 day period for stopping correspondence. Obviously, this didn’t work either. Didn’t you know that email is NOT snail mail? An ability to go into a database and delete my email shouldn’t be so complicated.So I’m officially starting my Citibank Watch. How many days before I 1) hear back from Citibank and/or 2) get them to stop sending me useless email messages I can’t unsubscribe from.

Here are the dates:-          # of days since my first letter to Citibank: 90 Days

# of days since writing to William R. Rhodes, CEO of Citibank: 29 Days

I’ll try to do an automatic clock. If you know of a simple code that I can add, please send me an email.  

Technorati Tags:

Uncategorized
Oct 29, 2007
csalomonlee

Red Sox Wins World Series

Red Sox

Yeah! The Red Sox won the World Series last night. I have to admit, until I met my husband, I didn’t have a baseball team. I first became enamored with the team in 2004.

 

The story of the Red Sox captured everyone’s attention. The improbable run. The interesting personal stories.

Down 3-0 in the series to come back and beat their nemesis! Thank Dave Robert’s 9th inning steal for keeping the Sox Nation alive. Curt Schilling’s literal “red sox” that will live in baseball lore and Cooperstown.

Great stories capture everyone’s attention. And this past World Series will be remembered as well for Lester pitching after battling cancer. We will remember Ellsbury and Pedroia for their youth and contributions behind the bat. And Lowell will be remembered for his key clutch plays on defense and hitting when needed.

Now if only my 49ers could come back =(

Technorati Tags: World Series

Uncategorized
Oct 26, 2007
csalomonlee

FEMA Screws up Again

FEMA CluelessWow, FEMA does it again. According to the Associated Press through SF Chronicle online, FEMA called a press conference that included FEMA employees as reporters: 

“The agency — much maligned for its sluggish response to Hurricane Katrina over two years ago — arranged to have FEMA employees play the part of independent reporters Tuesday and ask questions of Vice Adm. Harvey E. Johnson, the agency’s deputy director.”

 Here are six things that they did wrong:

  1. Had employees imitate reporters
  2. Called a press conference with 15 minutes notice
  3. Provided an 800 number to listen to the press conference but not participate (Hello – note to FEMA – participation is in. One-way dialogue is out) 
  4. Positioned this as a way to “get information out as soon as possible”
  5. Asked softball questions to position FEMA in a positive light
  6. Still haven’t punished anyone for this “stunt” 

Here are five simples things that they could’ve done differently:

  1. Hold a one-hour daily morning briefing to provide status updates on the most important issues
  2. Answer questions after the FEMA update and limit each reporter to one question
  3. Media brief your spokesperson on how to handle the Q&A and practice with questions that will be asked by the media
  4. Create a FAQ document on the FEMA website to answer the most commonly asked questions
  5. Provide an 800 number that allows two-way conversation

 Technorati tags: FEMA

Oct 25, 2007
csalomonlee

PRMeetsMarketig Weekly Digest: October 25, 2007

WOW! Who would’ve thought a $15 billion valuation for Facebook? I figured so many people are blogging about this that there’s no need to include in this weeks digest. Here’s your Weekly Digest: 

It’s the Positive that Counts. NOT!David Meerman Scott writes an interesting post about the power “negative” headlines to drive traffic on your website. Who knew, my glass half-empty perspective may actually help drive traffic! =) Where’s My Abacus? Accurate Online CountLouise Story of the New York Times highlights the frustration of web visitor counts – those reported by ComScore versus the online property itself. Would this issue be less relevant if we moved to a cost-per-click or action model versus cost per impression model? Probably not. People want to be able to say that have the largest slice of eyeballs. 

Know When to Fold ‘em…I’m an avid player of Texas Hold ‘em, so this post from Distilled caught my eye. Tom highlights how Absolute Poker’s slow response to cheating allegations is impacting their reputation. Take this piece of advice, when you have pocket Aces, don’t assume that slow playing is the best strategy! 

Measure Twice, Cut OnceA key point in construction is making sure you have the right measurement before acting. KD Paine summarizes 10 pieces of website measurements you should consider for your PR and marketing efforts.  

It’s a BBS. Not It’s a ForumWow – it’s interesting how some things come full circle. If you remember the term BBS, then you might find this article from Dee Barizo of netbusiness eerily familiar. She highlights the benefits of participating in niche forums for driving website traffic 

When Social Goes EnterpriseThis sucks. I just learned from paidcontent.org that CrispyNews was acquired by Salesforce.com earlier this year. Good thing, the PR group will still remain. Bad part, no new groups will be opened by non-corporate users. Granted, the RSS feed for the group seemed inconsistent at best. 

Another Reason Not to StealFor those Apple employees trying to get $100 rebates off a free phone, Apple acted swiftly and decisively. Seth Rodin writes that over 800 Apple employees were fired for stealing. Personally, this was the best thing Apple could do. Demonstrates a strong sense of ethics that is sorely lacking from our society. 

Less is MoreBrian Carroll writes the B2B Lead Generation blog and posted an interesting point about doing less may drive more results for sales lead generation efforts. Though Brian is writing this from a lead generation prospective, I wonder how much transfer to the media field? Imagine dissecting my pitch process to determine what yields better results with reporters and bloggers. Interesting thought indeed for me to consider. 

Technorati Tags:  advertising b2b marketing blogging marketing measurement reputation management Social media Weekly Articles

Oct 23, 2007
csalomonlee

Lunch or Networking? – Oracle Lunch 2.0

Fruits and vegetablesI attended my first Lunch 2.0 at the Oracle campuses today. Lunch 2.0 is an event that is starting to spread not only through the Bay Area but also overseas (Jeremiah Owyang of Web Strategist brought it to Hong Kong recently). 

The event had excellent food and presentations about Oracle’s upcoming Web 2.0 tech for enterprises. This leads me to think about the pros or cons of holding such an event.

Pros:

  1. Great way to discuss your products and services over a free lunch
  2. Can leverage the event to look for new employees
  3. Position your company as forward thinking by hosting a networking event
  4. Network for prospective business by having employees in attendance

Cons:

  1. If people are just attending for a free lunch, is this the right audience? Ironically, one of the speakers even pointed out the issue of a “free lunch” versus interest in the products
  2. There seemed to be an equal amount of Oracle employees as attendees
  3. The event was centered around the product reviews, so not much “networking” by the time I left
  4. There was a iPhone promotion to get contact information, but I don’t know if I would have done it based on questions you should ask before doing a promo/sweepstakes.

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About

Cece Salomon-LeeCece Salomon-Lee is director of product marketing for Lanyon Solutions, Inc. and author of PR Meets Marketing, which explores the intersection of public relations, marketing, and social media.

This blog contains Cece's personal opinions and are not representative of her company's.

Learn more about Cece.

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