Interviews

FIR Interviews

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

FIR Interview: JerryGarcia.com developers Mark Silverman and Amy Haiar from Critical Mass

JerryGarcia.com

The websites of most musicians adhere a highly predictable template. There’s a bio, a page hosting some music, another with photos and video, a tour schedule, and a merchandise store. In developing the recently launched Jerry Garcia website, the team at global digital agency Critical Mass were anxious not only to explode the traditional artist’s site, but to take the website experience to a whole new level.

The site is a wonderland of content for fans of the iconic Grateful Dead front man, as well as a place to share their own experiences and content, and connect with friends…all within the site without reliance on third-party social networks. The concept is transferable to any brand that has a history, a lot of fans and a lot of content.

The site has earned high praise. When the site launched early this year (without the Parking Lot, where fans can share their own content), Rolling Stone‘s Mike Ayers wrote that the site features…

a massive set of archival material for fans to explore, including 15,000 hours of recorded music and 3,450 shows, as well as timelines and information about 26 of Jerry’s bands and 77 of his musical collaborators. Fans will also be able to “follow” 10 different tours undertaken by Garcia’s bands. ...Garcia’s family provided the site with a wealth of unseen photos, concert material, ticket stubs and even Garcia’s own artwork to augment the experience. Currently, there are no plans to charge fans for access to the site’s material and the experience has been optimized for mobile devices as well.

From MusicTimes:

The sheer amount of recordings available isn’t even the best part of the deal. Fans will be able to trace ten of the tours Garcia embarked on with various bands throughout his career. For example, you could follow the entirety of the ‘77 Grateful Dead tour, listening to every concert set included. Nine of the included tours are from the Dead, but the ‘93 Jerry Garcia Band tour is included as well.

In this FIR interview, co-host Shel Holtz speaks with Mark Silverman and Amy Haiar, who headed up the Critical Mass team that developed the site after Silverman’s outreach upon discovering the sorry state of the domain. (A big shoutout to original Inside PR co-host David Jones for letting us know about the work Critical Mass was doing on the site.)

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About our Conversation Partners

Mark Silverman, Planning Director, Critical MassMark Silverman, Planning Director—A culture-loving, creative problem solver, Mark is a user experience strategist focused on delivering extraordinary, results-driven, digital experiences for some of the worlds biggest brands. With a background in science and technology, sociology, social psychology, and cultural studies, Mark joined the Critical Mass team in 2008. He is inspired by the ever-changing digital landscape and all things geeky. Mark has covered various roles during his tenure at Critical Mass, including UX strategy, brand planning, analytics, content analysis, and account management.

Connect with Mark on Twitter at Mark_Silverman

Amy Haiar, Creative Director, Critical MassAmy Haiar, Creative Director—With over 15 years of interactive experience, Amy has delivered thought leadership and award-winning experiences for brands like Harley-Davidson, Nike, Hewlett-Packard, Vail Resorts, USAA, and United Airlines. She also led the creative effort for the first ever fully responsive, fully accessible heath care website for Humana. With an eye for innovation and pixel perfection, Amy believes craftsmanship is critical to the art of web design, and lives by the overarching philosophy: make beautifully simple work.

Connect with Amy on Twitter at Amy_Haiar

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by shel on 04/15 at 12:29 PM
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Friday, April 04, 2014

FIR Interview: Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gioglio, co-authors, The Power of Visual Storytelling

The Power of Visual StorytellingFIR co-host Shel Holtz talks with Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gilglio, who are out with a brand new book from McGraw Hill, The Power of Visual Storytelling: How to Use Visuals, Videos, and Social Media to Market Your Brand. The publisher’s description of the book notes:

  • Human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text.
  • Web posts with visuals drive up to 180% more engagement than those without.
  • Viewers spend 100% more time on web pages with videos.

Filled with full-color images and thought-provoking examples from leading companies, The Power of Visual Storytelling explains how to grow your business and strengthen your brand by leveraging photos, videos, infographics, presentations, and other rich media. The book delivers a powerful road map for getting started, while inspiring new levels of creativity within organizations of all types and sizes.

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About our Conversation Partners

Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gioglio

Ekaterina Walter (left in photo above) led strategic and marketing innovation for brands such as Intel and Accenture, and is currently a CMO of Branderati. She is an international speaker and author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller “Think Like Zuck: The Five Business Secrets of Facebook’s Improbably Brilliant CEO Mark Zuckerberg” and co-author of “The Power of Visual Storytelling: How to Use Visuals, Videos, and Social Media to Market Your Brand.” Ekaterina sits on a Board of Directors of Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA). Her thought leadership was featured on CNBC, ABC, NBC, Fox News, Forbes, TechCrunch, CNN, WSJ, Inc., Entrepreneur, Huffington Post, and more. You can find her on Twitter: @Ekaterina. Her blog is at ekaterinawalter.com.

Jessica Gioglio (right in photo above) is the social media manager for Dunkin’ Donuts and the co-author of, “The Power of Visual Storytelling: How to Use Visuals, Videos, and Social Media to Market Your Brand.” Prior to joining Dunkin’ Donuts, Jessica held roles at TripAdvisor, State Street and Comcast. Reach Jessica on Twitter at @savvybostonian.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by shel on 04/04 at 04:45 AM
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FIR Interview: Therese Manus and Stine Jarmund, Norwegian Communication Association

#komdagen selfieAttracting record attendance to an annual conference is no small feat, but is one achieved by The Norwegian Communication Association (NCA) which saw the highest number of its members take part in Communications Day, its annual conference in Oslo at the end of March.

What attracted 600 NCA members to take part in Communications Day 2014 is one of the topics discussed when FIR co-host Neville Hobson - who was an invited keynote speaker at the event - sat down with Therese Manus, managing director, and Stine Jarmund, training and events adviser, of the NCA to talk about the communication landscape in Norway.

The conversation addressed hot topics that concern communicators and professional associations everywhere - professionalism, for example, ongoing education and training, transparency and trust - that are issues that the NCA is also debating and discussing with its stakeholders in Norway, and on the broader international stage via its affiliation with the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management.

The final part of the discussion looked to the future of communication - the theme of this year’s Communication Day conference - and the profession, and what that might look like in Norway during the next five years.

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About our Conversation Partners

Therese ManusTherese Manus is the Managing Director of The Norwegian Communication Association. She has previously worked as Head of Section at the National Library of Norway, Communications Advisor at Energy Norway and Journalist and Editor at Budstikka Media.

Therese has a Master of Management module in PR Management and Strategic Communication from BI Norwegian Business School, a Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies from the University of Westminster, and has several subjects from the University of Oslo.

Stine JarmundStine Jarmund is an Advisor for training programs and conferences at The Norwegian Communication Association. Stine has previously worked as a Consultant for SHL Norway and as an Advisor for JCK Communication.

Stine has a Master’s degree in Social Sciences with a specialization in psychology from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and a Master of Management module in PR Management and Strategic Communication from BI Norwegian Business School.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by neville on 04/04 at 01:01 AM
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Monday, March 31, 2014

FIR Interview: Jay Lauf, Publisher, Quartz magazine

In September 2012, Quartz entered the evolving mainstream media landscape with its offering, a digital business magazine intended primarily for consumption on tablets and other mobile devices.

There is no print edition.

Quartz

In the eighteen months since the launch of Quartz - what it described as "a new type of publication in the new global economy for a new class of global business executive" - the digital magazine now reaches five million readers globally, according to publisher Jay Lauf, with 42 percent of this number outside the US, illustrating the strong international attraction of the magazine.

On the advertising front - Quartz’ revenue model is based on attracting the right advertisers that enable the magazine to be available free to readers - there are now over 50 international blue-chip companies participating, according to Lauf, ranging from car makers such as Porsche, Land Rover and Cadillac; to Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse, Bank of America and UBS in the financial sector; Siemens, Boeing, GE and Exxon in global industrials; and luxury goods makers like Ralph Lauren and Rolex.

In this FIR Interview, co-host Neville Hobson spoke with Jay Lauf in a wide-ranging conversation that includes Lauf’s assessment of the media landscape of which Quartz is a disruptive part, how Quartz leverages the social web, and the future of print ("I don’t believe print will completely die out," he says); and an assessment of Quartz’ advertising model that, certainly from a reader’s perspective, is unlike most other advertising-supported digital media - with Quartz, you won’t find a pop-up ad, a flashing banner, or a sudden auto-playing video: instead, you have discreet and, often, elegant advertising that feels part of the magazine.

The conversation also covered brand journalism (with a look at the Wall Street Journal’s model of experimentation in this area), and the future for the mainstream media where the barriers to entry (and exit) in this evolving, tumultuous landscape have never been lower.

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About our Conversation Partner

Jay LaufJay Lauf is Publisher of Quartz and SVP of Atlantic Media. In his role, he oversees Quartz’s business operations and acts as a senior advisor to Atlantic Media on corporate initiatives.

Lauf assumed the role at Quartz when the digital, global, business news publication launched in September 2012. Under Lauf, Quartz’s innovative advertising has garnered awards and honors from Digiday, AdWeek, the Headliner awards, Deadline Club and more.

Prior to his role at Quartz, Lauf led The Atlantic’s revitalization as its Publisher. Under his direction, the publication attained its first profit in decades and transitioned The Atlantic to a "digital-first" brand earning the label from Ad Age: "an ultra-modern, multi-platform juggernaut".

Lauf has twice been named one of "The Most Intriguing People in Media" by minOnline (2010 & 2013), "Publisher of the Year" by AdWeek (2012), a part of the "Digital Team of the Year" by minOnline (2012) and "Publishing Executive of the Year" by AdAge (2010).

Connect with Jay on Twitter: @jlauf.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by neville on 03/31 at 01:01 AM
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Sunday, March 09, 2014

FIR Interview: Dan York and Neville Hobson in London, March 7, 2014

[L-R] Dan York and Neville Hobson

FIR correspondent Dan York spent the past week in London at IETF 89, the conference of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), in his capacity as senior content strategist at the Internet Society.

The IETF is a large open international community of network designers, operators, vendors, and researchers concerned with the evolution of internet architecture and the smooth operation of the internet.

In far more an informal conversation than an interview, Dan and FIR co-host Neville Hobson met up in the evening of March 7 to talk (and reminisce) about the internet, the milestone of the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web, and more, in a wide-ranging discussion that began with Dan’s perspectives on his week in London at IETF 89.

Their conversation embraced views about online security, privacy and identity, issues of trust surrounding government eavesdropping and surveillance post-Snowden revelations, and the "Internet of Things." It included Dan’s and Neville’s perspectives and ideas on what communicators need to be thinking about and doing that will help others understand the changes that online technologies bring to society, to organizations, to individuals.

  • Technical aspects: The conversation was recorded on an Olympus LS-14 portable digital audio recorder in WAV file format; final MP3 file production was carried out with Adobe Audition 3.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by neville on 03/09 at 03:01 AM
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Wednesday, March 05, 2014

FIR Interview: Eric Sauve, co-founder and CEO, Foko (think of it as Instagram for the enterprise)

Foko appAnything that takes root on the Web eventually finds its way into the enterprise. Social visual communication has exploded in the last few years with the success of Instagram, Pinterest and other tools, along with the surge in photo sharing via Facebook and other social networks. Creative internal communicators found ways to take advantage of these external resources for internal purposes, but how long would it take before tools designed for employee-to-employee photo sharing emerged?

Foko is the first app designed for the enterprise. Launched at Demo 2013, Foko earned coverage from GigaOm, Simply Communicate, and BetaKit, among others.

In this FIR interview, co-host Shel Holtz talks about the app and its potential uses with Foko co-founder and CEO, Eric Sauve.

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About our Conversation Partner

Foko co-founder and CEO Eric SauveEric Sauve is the CEO and Cofounder of Foko, private photo sharing for companies. Previous to Foko, Eric founded Tomoye, an enterprise social software company which was acquired by NewsGator (now Sitrion). At Tomoye and NewsGator, Eric helped manage social business Intranet deployments at organizations such as the US Army, John Deere, Citi Bank and more.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by shel on 03/05 at 09:34 AM
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Thursday, January 16, 2014

FIR Interview: Laura Thomas, Dell’s new Chief Blogger

Direct2Dell.com

One of the pioneering organizations that ventured into the embryonic blogosphere in the early days of social media was Dell with its Direct2Dell corporate blog.

Launched in 2006, Direct2Dell gained early praise for its authenticity and transparency in how it enabled the company to engage with customers, fans and critics during a challenging time for Dell in customer relationship management in what became widely known as "Dell Hell."

In the ensuing years under the leadership of Chief Blogger, Lionel Menchaca - who has been a frequent guest on FIR podcasts - Direct2Dell evolved and developed as a credible place on the social web for many individual voices to tell Dell’s story.

Now Direct2Dell embarks on a new chapter with the transition into the role of Chief Blogger by long-time Dell communicator, Laura Thomas.

In this FIR Interview, co-hosts Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz discuss the transition with Laura, who talks of her vision and plans for Direct2Dell  as a "new era," expressed in detail in Dell’s Blog Manifesto, a guide for internal use that Dell has made public (embedded below).

 

Manifesto for Dell’s Official Blog – Direct2Dell.com from Dell Inc

Topics discussed in the interview include Laura’s desire to gain reader feedback (via an informal online survey) as a foundational step that will influence Direct2Dell’s development; and discussion on specific elements in the Blog Manifesto such as editorial policy for contributors and guidance on developing effective content.

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About our Conversation Partner

Laura ThomasLaura Pevehouse Thomas has been part of the Dell organization for 13 years playing various roles in corporate communications, employee communications, public relations, community affairs, marketing, branding, social media and other online communication.

Laura is currently Chief Blogger for Direct2Dell.com, Dell’s official corporate blog that she helped launch in 2007. As part of Dell’s Corporate Communications team, she previously focused on Global Commercial Channels and US Small and Medium Business public relations. Prior to that, she was responsible for global strategy in social media and community management, as well as marcom landing pages, as a member of Dell’s Global SMB Marketing, Brand and Creative team.

When she was part of Dell’s Global Online group, Laura provided internal consulting that integrated online and social media opportunities with a focus on Corporate Communications and Investor Relations. She managed the home page of Dell.com, one of the top 500 global web sites in Alexa traffic rank, and first brought web feeds and podcasts to the ecommerce site. In her spare time she led Dell into the metaverse with the creation of Dell Island in Second Life.

Laura has earned the designation of Accredited Business Communicator from the International Association of Business Communicators, and received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Louisiana State University. Before joining Dell Financial Services in 2000, she worked at the Texas Workforce Commission and PepsiCo Food Systems Worldwide.

  • Connect with Laura on Twitter: @LPT.

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

You can also send us 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.

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.

This FIR Interview is brought to you with Lawrence Ragan Communications, serving communicators worldwide for 35 years. Information: www.ragan.com.

Podsafe music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

Posted by neville on 01/16 at 02:09 PM
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