The overlapping worlds of brand communications, advertising and public relations are engaged in a head‑scratching, chest‑pounding, eye‑rolling re‑examination of how organizations should be marketed. The shock-and-awe of it all was on full display this week at the Council of Public Relations Firms "2013 Critical Issues Forum" with the attention-getting theme "Content Frenzy" and a fire hose of comments from experts.
While the recent depiction of alleged Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine caused quite a stir, provocative images and subject matter are common tools to entice readers. Last year, Time Magazine featured a controversial image of a mother breastfeeding her three-year-old son and Newsweek declared Obama “The First Gay President” after he announced his support of gay marriage. According to the Alliance for Audited Media, magazine sales plummeted 16% on average in 2012. Was this bold attempt to attract lost Rolling Stone readers ultimately effective?
The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which limited the rights of same-sex couples, was overturned by the Supreme Court in an historic ruling yesterday morning. As with other pop culture happenings and current events, brands are quick to leverage the news to connect with consumers – a trend that has become known as “real-time marketing.” With countless eyes glued to computer screens, live-blogs and social networks, it’s a prime time for brands to get involved.
According to a study by Nielsen, the amount of time Americans spend watching television is on the decline, but viewing actually is growing as people use tablets and smartphones. Partly as a result of this research, Nielson predicts the rise of what they call the “Zero-TV” household.
Editors and reporters receive hundreds of product pitches every week, making it difficult to cut through the clutter and make your product stand out. Media mailers can be an effective way to get your product in the media’s hands, and with a little creativity, you can reach them in an innovative way that will ultimately drive brand awareness through media coverage. Here are some tips for planning your next product mailer:
“Perfect is the enemy of good.”
You’ve probably at least heard this proverb, even if you don’t know what it means. I’m simplifying things here, but the basic idea is that pursuing perfection can keep you from achieving good things. And this saying has been on my mind a lot lately as it relates to public relations.
With the 24/7 nature of news reporting, we constantly see breaking news alerts on our smartphones and online, and according to a new study, we’re commenting about news a lot more frequently than we used to. We’re also headed for more sports- and weather-related news, less governmental news and shrinking media budgets. These are just a few of the insights from the State of the News Media 2013, Pew Research Center’s 10th annual report on American journalism.
March 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of National Nutrition Month, a nutrition education and information campaign led annually by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association). National Nutrition Month focuses on the “importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.”
Awards season is in full swing. Dust off your best digs—and we don’t mean your swankiest business attire. First, polish up your award entry writing skills and identify your brightest campaigns.
Senior Vice President Mark Malinowski recently shared his perspective on brand mascots as the comeback kid – that the right mascot can position a brand for continued pop culture relevance, especially with the power of today’s social media landscape.
We’re all used to the Super Bowl commercial hype – what ad will shock us, make us laugh or make us wonder what they were thinking when they spent millions for 30 seconds of GoDaddy body painting with Danica Patrick. This year, ad agencies are upping the ante and involving consumers in their annual brawl for best ad.
Magazines have been a resource for women for fashion, recipes, lifestyle, health and nutrition advice since the 1700s. Though the format of magazines has certainly changed over the years, they remain an important channel for brands and clients to reach the female demographic. With increased space being dedicated to advertising within publications, securing editorial placement for clients can be challenging. Therefore it’s important to plan carefully and do your homework when trying to connect with editors. Here are some tips to help when planning your next deskside tour with long-lead media.
Nearly 25 years ago the National Women’s History Project, a grassroots organization, lobbied Congress to turn National Women’s History Week into a month-long celebration, designating March as International Women’s History Month. The project aims to recognize the achievements of women in many careers – science, community, sports, government, literature, art – and to help pave the way for new opportunities for girls and young women. Each year, Americans and people around the globe are encouraged to honor women’s rightful place in history.
I recently participated on a panel organized by the Corporate Volunteer Council of Greater Boston. The topic was “Telling Your Story, How and When to Showcase Volunteer and Philanthropic Programs.” At Cone, we believe telling your story is a critical piece to ensure your cause-related efforts are most effective in making both business and social impacts.
Twitter. It’s revolutionary and paradigm-shifting. But, what exactly is it? It’s a little bit Facebook status update, a little bit AOL Instant Messager, a little bit LinkedIn and a little bit RSS feed. Ask a thousand different people what Twitter is, and you will get a thousand different answers.
Since yesterday’s launch of The Cone Nonprofit Power Brand 100, we’ve had many great discussions about the research. Every conversation starts with the same question. “What is it about the Top 10 that makes them the Top 10?” The answer, in a word, is ENGAGEMENT.
A new report confirms short-term price cuts do little to breed customer trust or loyalty. In fact, the Yankelovich poll says, they can actually be damaging to your brand. Seventy percent of respondents said that price cuts probably mean the brand is overpriced to begin with or the company is just trying to move old product. “People are suspicious if you significantly discount your brand,” explained J. Walker Smith, president of Yankelovich Monitor. “If you make significant changes in your value proposition it can confuse them. You have to give them reasons to buy stuff as opposed to just lowering prices as a knee jerk reaction to the economy.”
It’s Election Day in the United States, yet still too soon to say for sure what the outcome will be. (Lemme give a shout-out to my friends in Florida.)