When Bad Online Stuff Happens To Good Organizations and People


It’s going to happen – if you put yourself out there, the negative people will come. Marketers call them trolls or anti-fans and there are ways we marketers can use our expertise to deflect their impact.

Just one more reason why marketing and PR professionals are indispensable – we are the brand defenders. We cannot control what these trolls, anti-fans or angry people post online, but we can bring balance and a way out of the negative muck.

One major US corporation secures web addresses for their top executives like NAMEGOESHERESUCKS.com and other possible negative web addresses – to protect their brand as well as their executives. They also closely monitor anything negative that might appear online, and they do it for these leaders as well as their brand name.

STARTING PLACE: The consumer is smart. Never underestimate the wisdom of the consumer; they get it. Too often we react to the 5% who are the trolls and neglect the 95% who truly do understand that not everything they read is true or fair. And they understand everyone makes mistakes.

It’s Just Not True – This is the big one and the online lies are what make most CEO’s crazy. “Get this off the web!” they say. And we can; but it takes a while and a commitment to online brand management. We cannot control people who tell lies. What we can control is dispensing the truth across every communication channel possible, and frequently. And often you will need the support of your legal counsel, the sales team and even the receptionist and other front line people who may ask about what they have heard.

TRUTH Augustine-QuoteCommunicate truth. That’s it. Just be sure to communicate, across all platforms and do it sincerely, truthfully and frequently. Start with your in-house team, move to others who depend on you for their livelihood (like retailers, suppliers or vendors) and tell your truth via email, product printing, your website, Facebook, wherever your customer normally finds you.

IT’S ALMOST OVER. Hang in there, depending on how much positive news you put out, it will take a minimum of 3 months for the bad news to show its ugly head all the time (or at least it seems) and by 6 months it should have disappeared from immediate view.

Lesson learned – maybe we should utilize our communication channels more often – to keep lines wide open with our audiences inside and outside the organization. If we do, next time these trolls just might look a wee bit smaller and less dangerous. And yes, you can count on a next time as we live in a world where anyone can say anything they like and once again smart marketing people will come to the rescue.

How Reporters Use Social Media in 2014


Originally posted on BusinessWired - Business Wire Blog:

In the piece, “The Role of Social Media in Today’s Newsroom” Business Wire senior editor Paul Bowman takes a closer look at how today’s reporters are utilizing social media in their day-to-day work. And the results are somewhat surprising.  While today’s reporters rely heavily on social media and company newsrooms for research and article promotion, they are not interested in receiving pitches on this channel.


So how can you influence reporters across social channels, without directly pitching them?  Read on to find out:  http://www.commpro.biz/social-media/social-media-pr-social-media/role-social-media-todays-newsroom/

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What’s Hotter Than Red-Hot? White is Hot-Hot!



Let me show you in 5 visuals just how your marketing can be hot-hot too.

White hot Miami Heat
#1 – use less color – This image is the Miami Heat – note the players and the spectators are all supporting their “white hot” message.

#2 – Use less words – Say more with less like this Facebook post from Oreo cookies on an anniversary of September 11th.oreo never forget

WHITE people as canvases#3 – say it all by letting your guests be the canvases of your message. They wear white, you project your message on them.

#4 – be cool – take one thing and be unique – and memorable (note the upside down lilies) From The Screen Actors Guild Awards gala.White hang flowers up side down

#5 – end the day with pure, white bliss. This image from the Westin Hotel’s Heavenly Bed collection shows an all-white room.

Inviting isn’t it? bed Heavenly

It’s news. It’s a sales tool. It’s content for your website, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter – It’s a press release!


The most undervalued and most important tool in your marketing arsenal is the press release. This one or two page piece is the center of the marketing world. This is where the facts, the news and the relevance come together and are approved by management.

Now that you have this document in your hands – it’s time to fly!press release

    That news release now becomes the center of everything you need to communicate and sell.

- It is a tool your sales team can use to give customers the inside story
– Put it up on your website under “News” and stimulate SEO
– It is your latest blog
– Link the blog to LinkedIn
– Choose a visual, and the headline and make it a Facebook entry with a link to your website
– Pin the visual to Pintrest
– The first paragraph, if written in AP style, should be a perfect Tweet
– Consider having a quick video made of the topic and you are now up on YouTube

And absolutely send it to the media.

If you also put it out on a wire service like BusinessWire you will land on hundreds of news sites internationally too and further impact your campaign’s credibility. And BusinessWire also assures it will be picked up on the all important mobile devices.

A press release is at the heart of marketing – maximize it and realize that it is your best tool.

No matter where else you might begin a marketing campaign you are going to need the facts, the story, the visuals, quotes from leadership and approvals of the message you are using – in other words a well-crafted press release.

Never underestimate the importance of the writer of the release and their ability to wordsmith, spell, use proper grammar and pay attention to detail. After all where you start makes all the difference in where you go.

The 5 Definitive Rules to Media Relations in 2014



As a very long time customer of BusinessWire, I value their keen insight and wanted to share this with you – take note if we all focus on just these 5 ideas, we will continue to be successful. Thank you BusinessWire for this insightful piece of tips and tricks!

Originally posted on BusinessWired - Business Wire Blog:

By Serena Ehrlich, Director of Social and Evolving Media

Earlier this year, Business Wire released their 2014 Media Survey in which we asked 300 reporters, journalists, editors, bloggers and freelancers a wide range of questions related to how they cover company news.  Their answers provide a very clear road map to media relations best practices in 2014.  In this post, we look at the top five questions that make up the new rules for media relations in 2014.

1. Reporters have to meet metrics too With 44 percent of media survey respondents now writing for online publications, the metrics in which the success of an article is based upon have changed. Thanks to unprecedented speed and reach of news enjoyed by the world today, story views have replaced print sales, social shares replacing water cooler discussions.

Media Moving Online

Tweet this statistic now!

As we have discussed many times, one of the easiest ways to…

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A Marketing Manifesto – 4 Truths


At some point (maybe even today) you will say to yourself “how can I ever keep up with all the changes going on” and then the second truth will hit you “the more things change, the more they stay the same.”

Which leads me to the Marketing Manifesto and these 4 truths:Manifesto

#1 – Marketing is communications pure and simple. The latest term for this is “H to H”, Human to Human.

#2 – The absolute best communication is a conversation.

#3 – Matching the audience, with the right conversation via the most effective and open communication vehicle is the challenge of a marketing pro. Indeed it is what divides the best from all the rest.

#4 – At the end of any day, anywhere, the consumer just wants to know they are getting value, their lives will be even slightly improved if they spend their hard earned money, and yes this seller of products or services might care about them.

And thus it was, and thus it is – and you can count on this being a truth as long as there are humans.

The 911 – What The Best Event Planners Have In Their “Just in Case” Box


Do you have a box in your car that is “just in case”? Well the best event planners do too and over the years we have accumulated the best of the best … sharing with you.chip clip

  1. A photographer brings potato chip bag clamps – one day when hotel drapes would not close and she needed the sun to be blocked for a special photo – she pulled out her  potato chip bag clamp, brought the drapes together to block the sun temporarily and the photo turned out perfectly.
  2. A can of WD-40 eliminates squeaky chairs, especially if they are on a podium with miked speakers!  Says one convention services planner.
  3. A business meeting planner brings the essentials – at least they are to him – 3 m sticky notes in a large size and sharpies … when the presentation fails to show or fails to play – here is an option that could save the day.
  4. A wedding planner in California includes shoe laces in her go-to kit.  Not for shoes but for all the other things that need to be open, closed or tied.  An entrance door that will not stay open – those shoelaces do the trick (she brings extra-long ones) and they are easy to untie too.’
  5. Have you ever picked up your event signs and the directional arrows were the wrong way?  Or counted on a facility to provide the signage and they were wrong? Pack a small chalkboard or two and colored chalk and you’ll get guests where they need to go.
  6. Extra cell phone chargers (including for your cell), an extension cord and granola bars – the first two are obvious but the planner who offered this tip said the granola bars are the most important part of the trio because if you have a cell phone about to die, you want a client who is ready to handle what comes next. chalkboard 2
  7. Gaffer’s or duct tape, push pins, eyeglass cleaner and lipstick remover were other great ideas.
  8. Phone numbers of the support team, cash to tip valet parkers, and extra business cards are mandatory “must haves” too.

Most of these helpful items will fit in a shoe box and might be something you consider having at your ready … and if you don’t have a 911 box – start one now and keep updating it!

Share with us your smart ideas, cannot wait to hear them!