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!
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:
Monitor and respond to any posts about Citibank
Respond to snail mail letters with a letter, email or phone call
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
- 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.
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 =(
“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:
- Had employees imitate reporters
- Called a press conference with 15 minutes notice
- 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)
- Positioned this as a way to “get information out as soon as possible”
- Asked softball questions to position FEMA in a positive light
- Still haven’t punished anyone for this “stunt”
Here are five simples things that they could’ve done differently:
- Hold a one-hour daily morning briefing to provide status updates on the most important issues
- Answer questions after the FEMA update and limit each reporter to one question
- Media brief your spokesperson on how to handle the Q&A and practice with questions that will be asked by the media
- Create a FAQ document on the FEMA website to answer the most commonly asked questions
- Provide an 800 number that allows two-way conversation
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.
Brian 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.
I 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.
- Great way to discuss your products and services over a free lunch
- Can leverage the event to look for new employees
- Position your company as forward thinking by hosting a networking event
- Network for prospective business by having employees in attendance
- 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
- There seemed to be an equal amount of Oracle employees as attendees
- The event was centered around the product reviews, so not much “networking” by the time I left
- 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.
Here are the weekly articles that I found interesting. There were so many that I’m posting a day early. I may revise my schedule to get this up on Thursdays instead of Fridays, because frankly, I can think of better things to do on my Friday. Here you go:
Hello, hello hello? Andy Beal of MarketingPilgrim points out the problem with the multitude of top blog lists and the risk of creating an echo chamber of self-importance.
All a Twitter B.L. Ochman provides some great reasons why marketers should consider Twitter. As she highlights, it’s important to give as much as take for any tool you use. Alternatively, David Berkowitz writes on Search Insider that maybe listening to Twitter is more important than participating. The issue is, do marketers really listen? =)
When Advertising Isn’t Marketing I just started reading David Meerman Scott and I don’t know why I didn’t start earlier. David points out the Forrester’s recent interactive marketing report if focused on the old rules of marketing versus the new rules. Check out David’s perspective on what new marketing means.
Don’t Be an Ugly American – Crossing Cultural Boundaries Ann Holland of MarketingSherpa provides an interesting look on crossing cultural boundaries for blogging. And who knew that she’s blogging from Serbia!
Fox Pisses Off Blood Thirsty Fans For fans of Buffy the Vampire TV series, you’ll love CK’s recent post about how Fox just pissed off tons of fans by serving a desist order for a sign along event. And you haven’t seen it, it’s one of the best TV episodes that’s been copied by other shows.
Trucking Down the Brand Fast Lane – Does Waggener Edstrom Have the Answer? KD Paine’s PR Measurement Blog had a quick post about this article in AdWeek. Waggener proposes an interesting brand management concept by visually mapping key words and their prospective impact on your company’s stock price.
Tracking Your Online Videos Michael Pick writes an interesting review of Tube Mogul for MasterNewMedia. For anyone trying to start a video marketing campaign, Mike outlines the pros and cons of Tube Mogul’s service. The cool part? Submit your content to several video sharing sites while getting an analytics overview. Now where are those old salsa videos…Disclosure: My company has a service that shares videos, podcasts, webcasts and online demos. Though not directly competitive, I felt it was important to disclose this.
Another Sign of Web 2.0 Exuberance? The New York Times ran a story about the Silicon Valley’s fuzzy math. So add fuzzy math to my list of signs that the Web 2.0 Exuberance is upon us. And Brad Stone outlines a conversation with Carlot Perez, who provides a historical look at tech bubbles and busts.
PR Folks Starting to Get Bloggers? Robert Scoble had an interesting post about PR folks gaming Techmeme. What interested me more about his post was how he highlighted some interesting way to get bloggers’ attention, both proactive and reactive. But then again, he was massed email press releases. I don’t know – emailing press releases to a blogger you know or don’t know doesn’t seem to be the right way to approach bloggers. Food for thought.
Cece Salomon-Lee is director of marketing for ACTIVE Network, Business Solutions division, 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.
- http://richboysblog.com on PRMeetsMarketing Weekly Articles: October 18, 2007
- electronic cigarette company list on PRMeetsMarketing Weekly Articles: October 18, 2007
- Karleen Szpak on Going Virtual Isn’t Necessarily the Answer to Replacing Your Physical Events
- http://www.flickr.com/ on Going Virtual Isn’t Necessarily the Answer to Replacing Your Physical Events
- youtube.com on Rise of Social Commerce – Nielsen and Hallmark Summaries