Friday, November 30, 2007


While the association of this and marketing/pr/industry trends is a huge stretch (notice how SS Patrick is the only one who posts anything useful) this is just too good to pass up. Continuing the theme that our office has of passing around links to old fashion catalogs featuring men who's manliness is measured by the amount of chest hair peaking out over the top of their oversized collars, I now give you these select pictures from Ebony magazine.

I'm pretty sure this collar gives him the power of flight. You think the girl is looking up adoringly at him, but she honestly can't see past the collar.

Its like a crime fighting superhero who had his grandma make his costume. This polyester knit deflects bullets while remaining see through... for the ladies.

Don't look at this photo for more than 30 seconds or your eyes will explode in a technicolor shower of disco-themed confetti.

So what does all of this have to do with marketing/pr/industry trends? Well if I had to make something up (which I am) i'd say its this: All of the wonderful pr campaigns and ideas that you have and implement today, will be ripe for ridicule in just 30 years. Except in the future, it will be our robot overlords laughing at us. The more outlandish your pr ideas are now, the more likely the robots will be amused and spare your life. So keep brainstorming.

(more pics can be found at here

Monday, November 26, 2007

Get Social in 2008

The latest reports in PR Tech trends show that 2008 is going to an even bigger year for social media, which means that some way or another these tools need to be incorporated into 2008 PR plans and PR needs to be interacting with these social networking sites. Here are a few proof points that will show you the direction social media is moving in.
  • The New York Times recently decided to get rid of their online subscription based model and open up their online content to everyone. This was due to the fact that most people were ending up on their site via search engines. Building a search and social media campaign to find your online audience will be important. Every press release should be optimized for search engines so that you are making it easier for your audience to find you.

  • The Nielsen figures for the top U.S. social networking sites and blogs in October show that sites where word of mouth marketing is big now are only getting bigger and how important it is to find your 'fansumers' on these sites. Those are fans of your client's products - think of the groups that people create on these sites - those are where you'll find your 'fansumers'. Nielsen's November 2007 report below shows:
    - Facbook more than doubled their traffic in the last year
    - MySpace had a 19 percent growth over October 2006
    - LinkedIn grew 189 percent!

Myspace, 58,843, +19%

Facebook, 19,519, +125%

Classmates Online, 13,278, -2%

Windows Live Spaces, 10,261, +32%

AOL Hometown, 7,923, -15%

LinkedIn, 4,919, +189%

AOL People Connection, 4,084, -30%, 4,082, -14%

Club Penguin, 3,880, +157%, 2,397, +117%

Source: Nielsen Online

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

What's the yiddish word for lol

Thanks to a botched Outlook migration, I find myself on some new email aliases for the Paris and Barcelona offices. This has resulted in exposure to much more relaxed office settings, such as the public distribution of hilarious links of questionable HR content. Behold the power of Godtube and Jewtube
In the above screen capture of Jewtube, please note the following:
- Top featured video is "Ask the Erabbi"
- Recently viewed videos include "Adam Sandler's Chanukah Song" and "Cool facts about Israel"
- Popular tags include "Borat" "Judd Apatow" and "Super Heroes"

With such "enlightened" options for outreach available, it makes me wonder what other options are out there.
This now stands as an open challenge for others to find me equally hilarious/interesting (blank) sites out there.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Pitching with Buckshot

Peter Shankman, author of "Can We Do That?! Outrageous PR Stunts That Work," recently said that rather than spraying buckshot, PR people should research beats and specify a single reporter, "Don't want to do that?" then "Get the hell out of my industry." Ouch.

He's right though, spraying with buckshot will give you a wide pattern, like the one in the photo. Your shot is spread out across your target, or should I say, target markets in the case of PR, and often results in inconsistent performance. In the past few weeks we've seen a couple of influential bloggers start to call out PR people, by email address, for pitching them using buckshot. It's like firing with your eyes closed hoping you get one or two hits.

At the end of last month Wired Editor and author Chris Anderson posted the email addresses of over 300 PR people that he had permanently blocked from sending him any more spam/pitches. Now, not only are these people blocked, but they're also going to get a taste of their own medicine because their email addresses, being posted on the site, will be picked up by spam bots that will in turn spam them with unwanted mail.

Here's the post that started it all:

Here are some other bloggers that decided they had had enough as well:

I love this blog posting - if you have time to read it you should. Marshall Kirkpatrick posts a few PR pitches that he received that day and instead of ripping them to shreds he points out the good the bad and the ugly and offers a few tips for getting it right the next time.

Is your name/email address on any of these lists?

Monday, November 5, 2007

Seattle Dailies Borg the Competition

Bucking the trends of nearly a decade of sliding circulation numbers, both the Seattle Times and Seattle PI posted slightly increased circulation numbers this year. The reason? Assimilation of the King County Journal's readers. So if both papers continue devouring other newspapers, their eventual world domination is guaranteed. Some interesting numbers from the story:
- Both papers have a combined audience of 1.35 million adults in King County, southwest Snohomish County and Bainbridge Island.
- The electronic editions of both the Seattle Times and Seattle PI only netted 2,000+ subscribers combined.
- Oddly enough, the circulation of both papers matches the career path of Britney Spears when drawn onto a graph.

Similarly, if Spears continues devouring other pop stars, her eventual world domination is also guaranteed.

YouTube & Oprah

Oprah created her own channel on YouTube last week which not surprisingly already has 7,018 subscribers 92,671 channel views. Her first video has received 224,925 views in the first 3 days. Check it out:

It looks like the partnership between YouTube and Oprah will be announced on her show tomorrow, 11/6. The show will also have the two YouTube founders, Chad Hurley and Steve Chen on along with some others who have 'made it' on YouTube. Oh and P Diddy will be on the show. Apparently he is going to be announcing who is new assistant is going to be - whom he chooses off of YouTube.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


No, this isn't a post about "Bee Movie", which coincidently hits theaters today. Although the movie does look promising, it has that Jerry guy after all, it's got to be funny, right. There isn't any one out there, bees included, that haven't heard about this movie. There's been some great Bzzzzz, I mean Buzz, about the movie these past few months thanks to Jerry's massive bankrolling for the adverts, or maybe it was the appearance on Oprah that did it. Anyway I thought it was smart of them to create a 'Bee Movie' myspace page where they now have over 7,000 friends and where they have uploaded all of their trailers and other videos for myspace users to pass on to each other. Below are some tips on creating a viral marketing campaign of your own.

Check out today's Top 20 Viral Videos on YouTube: Nightmare Before Xmas

Here are a few ideas from 'The Art of Buzz Blog' on making your campaign go viral.

1) Give It Away
Who doesn’t love free crap? Look at Hotmail. By giving away free email accounts, Hotmail grew to over 12 million subscribers in less than 2 years. Like any good startup, they got bought up by Microsoft for a meager $400 million, but only after agreeing to eliminate from their records.

2) Make It Small
Proof positive that size doesn’t matter, its how you use it. In the latter part of the 19th century, Montgomery’s Ward was the king of the mail order catalogs, the Woot! of his time. How did Sears and Roebuck, a late entry into the mail order game, eventually rival and then surpass Montgomery’s Ward? Among the many brilliant ideas implemented by Richard Sears was the smaller catalog. Volume wise it remained just as thick as Montgomery’s Ward but as Sears explained when you place the two catalogs on your coffee table, you will almost always stack the smaller on top of the larger.

3) The Promise
Sears was also a man of catchy slogans such as "Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man" and more famously, "Satisfaction Guaranteed or Your Money Back." The miserly Sears didn’t want to give money back but it did put his integrity and that of the company front and center. My last washer and dryer combo is proof that his slogan was complete BS, but that’s besides the point.