Archives for April 2008

Web 2.0 Expo – Social Media Optimization

My first post from the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco is the second half of “Free Traffic: SEO/SMO 101 (Search Engine & Social Media Optimization) with Stephan Spencer of Netconcepts and Muhammad Saleem of Advantage Consulting Services. Unfortunately, I missed the SEO portion and gauging by the crowd around Stephan, it went quite well.

Muhammad Saleem’s portion of the presentation focuses on Social Media Optimization and Marketing 101. I’ve not met Mahammaed in person before and he’s sporting a very cool goatee with a waxed moustache.

Saleem’s presentation focuses on 4 aspects of social media:

  • Blogs
  • Social News sites
  • Social Networks
  • Online Video

Many other tools don’t have that big of an impact/conversionrate for the “average” company.

Groundswell Interview with Charlene Li

This week might as well be called “social media week” with the NewComm Forum, SMX Social Media and the Web 2.0 Expo all happening at pretty much the same time. Companies worldwide are trying their best to make sense of the emerging landscape of social technologies and the new book, Groundswell, from Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li of Forrester does a fantastic job at just that.

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Photo Credit stuartliroff

Charlene Li is Vice President & Principal Analyst at Forrester Research covering social computing and technologies. She is undoubtedly one of the most often quoted analysts on all things dealing with social computing and commerce on the web. After reading a review copy of “Groundswell – Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies” I’ve been referring every chance I get. Following is an interview with Charlene about the book and her insights into key questions for companies trying to demystify the social web.

Conversation Marketing – Join In!

Joseph Jaffe Presentation

[Note from Lee: Please join me in welcoming Jessica Cameron-Ruud as a contributor to Online Marketing Blog. Jessica works as an Account Coordinator with TopRank’s Online Marketing clients]

Over the past few months, MCAD and MIMA have hosted a series of events here in Minneapolis entitled ‘Conversations About The Future of Advertising’ (CATFOA). The most recent of which featured Joseph Jaffe, author of the new book “Join the Conversation”, who discussed conversational marketing as the next step for companies to connect with their customers.

A conversation is no longer defined as a sole dialog between two people, but as Jaffe explained, conversations are being held online between two or more sides including business to business, business to consumer, and even consumer to consumer. The conversation can be positive, negative or indifferent.

Direct Marketing vs Social Media Marketing

Thanks to the response received (@gyutae @AlbertMaruggi @AnnBernard @briansolis @martinbowling) from a Twitter post (follow here) on the topic of social marketing vs direct marketing, this post invites your opinion.

In a recent strategy session, some colleagues and I were discussing a promotion where one position was to focus on a direct marketing approach and another position involved social media, networks and communities. Compared to direct marketing efforts (snail mail, DRTV, email, etc) where an offer is created based on what the company wants to sell, a social marketing effort focuses more on involving communities with creating the offer as well as promoting it.

What would a direct marketing offer in this situation look like?

  • Develop top level messaging
  • Research and build an email list

Personality Not Included: Cultivating Corporate Personality With Rohit Bhargava

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This past Saturday, I visited local Twin Cities brewery, and soon to be local institution, Surly for their weekend growler sale. As per usual, my group and I were not alone in our quest as local denizens lined up to purchase as much as they could carry of the finest locally produced brew since the Hamm’s bear danced straight into our hearts.

So what is it that makes Surly, a beer that’s only been in existence on a local scale since 2006, a brand already demanded for by name and housed in a brewery that has become a Saturday destination point for many? The answer for Surly as well as other brands with an enthusiastic following can be found in Rohit Bhargava’s new book “*Personality Not Included.”

Joseph Jaffe Interview

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Photo Credit, CC Chapman

At last year’s DMA07 Annual Conference, I had the good fortune of giving half of a workshop on social media with renowned author, speaker and new media marketing guru, Joseph Jaffe. Too many marketing pundits don’t “walk the talk” and I found this not to be the case with Jaffe. A brilliant marketer who dares to challenge established marketing groupthink and advocates experimentation, Jaffe brings a fresh perspective that has attracted blue chip clients like P&G, The Coca-Cola Company, American Airlines and Motorola. He has also written two excellent books: “Life After the 30 Second Spot” and “Join the Conversation“.

Media Relations Summit Wrap Up

China Town San Francisco

M&O PR’s Kevin Sawyer and I are now finally back in the office after two jam packed days of Media Relations Summit. Public and media relations professionals, academics and business communicators from across the country gathered at what is known as the largest event for media relations in the world. Kevin blogged the event over at Media Relations blog and I made a few posts here and many more on Twitter.

Here’s a summary of the sessions we attended and covered:

The compelling morning keynote presentations were sandwiched by PR Technology updates and then followed by 4 tracks of sessions. Here are the sessions that Kevin and I blogged:

Charlie Rose Keynote with Howard Rubenstein

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In the opening keynote at Media Relations Summit, the legendary TV journalist and interviewer, Charlie Rose, had the tables turned and became interviewee with the famous PR guru, Howard Rubenstein.

Rubenstein: Why are your interviews so revealing? How do you get your guests to reveal so much?

Rose: The thing about a story… Describes the recent news over the weekend about the Clinton campaign manager getting sacked. People that do what I do want to advance a story like that. Stories are about communicating the range of emotions that are important to people.

The world I live in is driven by relationships. It’s not who you know, but how you know them.

How To Upgrade WordPress

Upgrading to a newer version of WordPress isn’t to complicated, however some precautions should be taken. The list below is a bit more detailed that WordPress provides, but I’m just trying to line item out everything.

Prerequisites:

  • FTP access.
  • Blog admin access.
  • 10-30 minutes for most blogs. This is also dependent on how big the blog is and how many plugins the blog has. Webhosting and internet connection speed can also play a big part.

Notes:

  • No other authors should be in the blog during the upgrade. If they are, it probably won’t hurt anything, but they’ll be confused as it won’t work correctly.

Mike Moran Keynote: What Corporations Need From PR in a Web 2.0 World

The day two Media Relations Summit lunch keynote is given by Mike Moran, a distinguished engineer from IBM, who starts out with a question: Did Robert Scoble make you feel technologically stupid this morning and now you’re thinking you have to listen to an engineer? Mike admits he can’t be Robert and neither should we.

“You have permission to sip from the new web 2.0 world, rather than drink from it like a fire hose”. Give yourself permission to do a little bit of this. What I don’t want is for you to feel overwhelmed by all of this. Also, “I’m going to count clips and thats it”. Don’t retreat to what you’re comfortable with. Be willing to experiment.

Getting the Most Out of Your Corporate Blog

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This session at Media Relations Summit includes Tac Anderson from HP, Jennifer Cisney from Kodak and Robert Scoble from Fast Company.

First up is Tac Anderson from HP, who shares a specific example of a tactical execution of a blog. HP has had bloggers for 3 years. 60+ blogs.

Example of using a business blog as a competitive response. Xerox announced a change in pricing. Charging more for the printer and less for the consumables – ink and paper.

The next day, HP blogger Vince Ferraro responded followed by analyst responses. Ensuing media coverage became more about HP’s response than the original Xerox announcement. HP was able to instantly get their viewpoint into the coverage by using a blog.

The Future of PR: Media Relations Summit 2008

Union Square San Francisco

Our client visit to San Francisco last week fell right next to the Media Relations Summit conference happening this week at the Westin St. Francis on Union Square. The near crossover meant a weekend in one of my favorite cities.

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As one of the largest conferences dedicated to media relations, this event attracts an array of public relations practitioners including the top PR agencies in the world, large and small corporate PR staff and academics from PR programs at major universities. Overall theme seems to be looking to the future.

I am joined by media relations specialist, Kevin Sawyer who will be blogging the event over at Media Relations Blog. Today was made up of pre-conference intensives and workshops. Monday and Tuesday sessions are filled with high level and practical how to programming.