Inside PR

Friday, December 12, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR 393: Our naughty or nice PR list…

FIR Presents Inside PRMartin here. This week, it’s Gini and me. Joe’s on the road traveling home.

And in the spirit of the season we thought we’d share our PR naughty or nice list for 2014.

First up: naughty.

And the lump of coal goes to…Edelman.

Really? Why?

Well, a Canadian company, TransCanada, hired the venerable agency to build support for a pipeline that will transport oil from Western Canada to refineries in the east. But when the agency recommended secretly using third-parties to attack the pipeline’s opponents and a document with the strategy was leaked to Greenpeace, TransCanada fired Edelman over ethical concerns.

Does this sort of program sound like a whisper campaign to you? It does to us.

Gini has written extensively about why whisper campaigns and other unethical tactics hurt PR. She likens the process to that of broken telephone, where what the last person hears is often very different from what was said at the beginning. Gini says that rather than sneaking through the back door, the profession should be open and honest. What do you think?

Now for our nice list.

Gini posed a question on Facebook asking people to nominate their suggestions the PR win of the year. She got a lot of replies including the Ice Bucket Challenge, Miley Cyrus, Taylor Swift (Gini’s selection on SpinSucks) and WestJet.

We chose WestJet for an imaginative follow up on its successful Christmas Miracle video. Once again, the company borrowed elements of classic holiday movies and showed, in an emotional way, how much they care about their customers and community.

Here’s the 2014 WestJet video.

And here’s the one from 2013.

Which PR programs would you put on the naughty list? And which ones would you qualify as nice? We’d love to hear what you think.

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

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You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 12/12 at 03:15 PM
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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR #392: The algorithm called journalism

FIR Presents Inside PRWe start this episode with a burning question from Gini: Is lasagna pasta – yes or no?

Joe and I both say yes. And so Gini, armed with the information she desperately needs, is ready to take on her dinner menu. That is, unless you, our listeners, think otherwise. Please let us know.

And now back to our regularly scheduled programming…

Joe starts the show talking about the notion of who makes news decisions – editors or algorithms. This was sparked by an Emily Bell speech and spawned a discussion online as well as several posts, including one by Jeff Jarvis.

In her talk, Bell contends journalists, who once controlled the determination and distribution of news, have lost their hold or maybe they’ve been supplanted. Their replacements? In digital channels, many editorial decisions are made by people fine-tuning algorithms or the algorithms themselves.

Martin says on the editorial front, we’ve traded one concentrated group of publicly-traded companies (media) for another (social networks as new media).

Gini says there’s so much info out there that until something’s been confirmed by the fourth estate, we tend not to believe it. Traditional media is the filter.

Joe contends PR is in an ideal position to bridge the gap between journalistic decision makers and the way algorithms pick content. And by seeing both sides of the coin, we can still help get news in front of people either though media or their feeds.

And that’s where understanding influence and influencers comes into play. Martin mentions a new type of influencer: a young video game player with an engaged audience who was featured in an article in the NYTimes. And the profession needs to refine its approach to public relationship-building to take this into account.

Are algorithms the new equivalent of editors – we don’t know who/what they are and yet they make many decisions? Is that a good or a bad thing? We’d love to hear what you think.

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 12/10 at 12:51 PM
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Monday, November 24, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR 391: Ch-ch-changes at F-F-Facebook—again

FIR Presents Inside PRMartin here and apologies to David Bowie but Facebook’s at it again and I couldn’t help myself.

Earlier this month, the company announced that in January, 2015 people will start seeing fewer promotional posts from brands, that is, things that push you to enter contests and sweepstakes, install an app or buy a product.

Joe and Gini think this is a positive shift because it puts the onus on brands to earn their way into a user’s news feed with relevant and useful content.

I say this goes well with the way Facebook lets folks mute brands and friends we may not want to hear from so often. Then I wonder about coupons. They’re both commercial and yet important to some people. Is Facebook treating coupons as pure promotion too? We’re interested if any of our listeners have insights on that.

We switch gears and Gini talks about Facebook’s Rooms app, which is trying to connect people through a common interest and not necessarily their social graph. Gini likens it to the early days of Internet communities and anonymous posting. Here’s a blog she wrote about it and why you may not be as anonymous as you think.

Joe says Facebook’s two recent changes – offering a less commercial newsfeed and simplifying their privacy offerings – are driving more value to its business. He thinks they’ve got their mojo back.

I close off by talking about the latest meshmarketing conference and some highlights, including Ann Handley’s fun and informative keynote.

What do you think about Facebook’s algorithm tweaks? Will it improve your experience and, as a result, will you be spending more time on the platform? Will you be changing your privacy settings? We’d love to hear what you think.

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 11/24 at 04:43 PM
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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR 390: Throw Away Your Crisis Communications Playbook

FIR Presents Inside PRYou didn’t think we’d not do a show about Jian Ghomeshi, did you?

Though he was a CBC Canadian star, his crisis evolved beyond the borders and certainly hit the United States as we all watched in wonder to see what would come of it all.

If you are like me and have never heard of him, the story goes that he was abusive to some former girlfriends in the bedroom. His story is that it was all consensual. The side of the women is that it wasn’t so much, particularly when he punched one of them in the face.

There, of course, are always three sides to a story (his side, her side, and the truth), but what has been interesting to watch is how Ghomeshi has handled the crisis, from a communications perspective.

The moment he was fired from the CBC, he wrote a long explanation to his fans on his Facebook page. Then he filed a $55 million lawsuit against the media company. Because he was a union employee, he cannot file a lawsuit, but speculation is he did it so he could tell his side of the story in legal documents that couldn’t be held against him later.

Then things got really hairy. His high-profile crisis firm dropped him and he “fled” to California. The case is ongoing and it certainly hasn’t died down because he stopped being vocal.

We discuss how he and his team framed the issue, what they did extraordinarily well, but also what they forgot to include, based on the flamethrowers on social media. Joe brings up a good point about how this also relates to Gamergate and how, in social media, people begin to define the issue themselves.

We’d love to hear what you think about how crisis should be handled in 2014/2015 versus 1990.

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 11/12 at 10:39 AM
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Wednesday, November 05, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR #389: A merger, a Facebook departure, and a cool new tool

FIR Presents Inside PROn today’s Inside PR, we have three topics: The Vocus/Cision merger, Copyblogger shutting down its Facebook page, and a cool new tool called Slidebatch.

Vocus and Cision

As it happens, I was in Washington, D.C. for the PRSA International Conference. I attended the happy hour with Vocus and Cision to learn of their new name and what their plans are, now that the merger is complete.

They will keep the name Cision and will be headquartered in Chicago (which makes me happy), but it sounds like Cision clients will now have access to Vocus tools (PR Web and HARO) and Vocus clients will now have access to Cision tools.

But it is an interesting look at what is happening in the PR industry. Joe asks if we’re shrinking and what that could mean for our livelihoods.

Copyblogger and Facebook

Then we tackled the big announcement from Copyblogger that they shut down their Facebook page, even with 36,000 fans.

We talk about whether this is a publicity stunt (that clearly is working because everyone in the industry is talking about it) or just a really smart decision.

Though the algorithm at Facebook has changed and engagement, reach, and comments are down across the board, it still drives a significant amount of referral traffic for each of us.

It would be interesting to see if Copyblogger lost a significant amount of referral traffic when they did this.

Slidebatch

SlideBatch is going to change the look and feel of your newsrooms forever.

No more manual updates to the newsroom every time a story runs.

Instead of every time a story runs about your organization or about one of your client, you have to create an image, write a couple of sentences to entice people to click, and then link to the original story, you can create a Batch.

We talk about other uses for it and why we think it’s a nice tool for every PR pro’s toolbox.

We’d love to know what you think about these topics!

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 11/05 at 12:57 AM
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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR #388: The evolution of media and media relations

FIR Presents Inside PRWhile I was in the air for the recording of this podcast, the conversation Martin Waxman and I had about the layoffs at The New York Times launched the conversation he and Joe Thornley had today.

While it’s a focus on Canadian media, it shows a very interesting trend: There is an ongoing march of media consolidation, which could very well continue to affect the way communications professionals—particularly those who focus on media relations—do their jobs.

In the news, Post Media acquired Sun Media and they are suddenly the largest print publication in Canada. Martin suspects they have 100% media market in cities such as Ottawa and Vancouver. While they’ve said there won’t be layoffs, we surmise they don’t really need multiple news bureaus in every city so it’ll be interesting to see what happens.

There continues to be a consolidation of newsrooms and the disappearance of beats—PR pros today outweigh journalists four to one—which means we have to continue to evolve.

And speaking of evolution, Martin and Joe spoke to an interesting tactic Jesse Brown is taking with Canadaland.

For those of you who don’t know (I didn’t), Jesse Brown was an early podcaster with Search Engine. A couple of years ago, he turned that into Canadaland, which is a media watchdog of sorts.

He has broken big stories, such as the policy the CBC had that allowed Peter Mansbridge to be on the news every night and also get paid to speak at events for organizations that were in the news. Because of the Canadaland investigation, the CBC changed their policy.

But Jesse is facing something many content producers face and that is he’s not being paid to spend the necessary time to break news like this. So he has asked his supporters to become patrons of sorts…and it’s working!

Martin and Joe wonder if this could be a new trend, particularly for brand-new content producers.

What do you think?

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 10/29 at 07:35 PM
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Wednesday, October 08, 2014

FIR Presents Inside PR #387: Is another tech bubble about to burst?

FIR Presents Inside PRMartin here.

This week, it’s Gini and me – as Joe was under the weather. (And you can hear from my voice that I’m just a tad jet-lagged…)

We spend the show talking about a couple of recent news items that caught our attention, and especially the notion that we may be headed into another tech bubble.

There certainly are a few signs. First, the New York Times announced it’s laying off 100 people from its newsroom staff. Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com and founder of The Downtown Project in Las Vegas, announced he was stepping down as project lead and then laid off 30 people. And VC Marc Andreesen feels tech startups are burning through cash at a rate similar to the 1999 tech bubble and that’s a cause for worry.

Martin references Clay Shirky’s Last Call post on Medium about the impending demise of print.

Shirky offers three pieces of advice to journalists to help reposition themselves and Gini thinks they apply just as well to communicators.

Get good with numbers – we’re in an age where we need to be focused on how the content and communications work we do becomes an investment, not an expense.
Learn to use social media tools to get ideas for stories. That’s something we’re good at already, but we need to continue to test and learn.
Collaborate – that is, integrate paid, earned, shared and owned programs and understand how the pieces fit together.
What do you think? Are we heading into another tech bubble? How will that affect the landscape for journalists and communicators? Can we redouble our efforts to adapt and retrain ourselves? We’d love to hear from you.

Send us an email or an audio comment to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), join the FIR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Google+ Community, join the Inside PR Facebook group, leave us a comment here, message us @inside_pr on Twitter, or connect with Gini Dietrich, Joseph Thornley, and Martin Waxman on Twitter.

Get this podcast:

We’d love to hear your thoughts!

FIR Community on Google PlusShare your comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future podcasts, in the online FIR Podcast Community on Google+.

You can also reach Inside PR’s hosts by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address), or join the InsidePR Google Plus community or Facebook group. InsidePR is on Twitter at @Inside_PR. You can send us an instant voicemail via SpeakPipe, right from the FIR website. Or, call the Comment Line at +1 415 895 2971 (North America), +44 20 3239 9082 (Europe), or Skype: fircomments. You can tweet us: @FIRpodcast. And you can email us at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). If you wish, you can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Thank you to the people behind Inside PR: Our theme music was created by Damon de Szegheo; Roger Dey is our announcer. Inside PR is produced by Kristine D’Arbelles and Ashlea LeCompte.

Check the FIR website for information about other FIR podcasts. To receive all podcasts in the FIR Podcast Network, subscribe to the “everything” RSS feed.

FIR presents Inside PR is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years.

Posted by shel on 10/08 at 06:40 AM
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