Sunday, November 15, 2009

Twitter Stalling?

Interesting article on Twitter usage. The number of tweets is way up, but number of users is down.

All is not gloomy, however:

On an annual basis, Twitter is still going gangbusters with 1,271 percent growth from 1.4 million visitors in October, 2008. And on a global basis, it still seems to be chugging away with 58.4 million visitors in September. But a hypergrowth company like Twitter cannot afford to slow down in its home market.

Here's what I think this means: People sign up and then realize it's all a bit overwhelming. A smaller core actually use it actively. Plus, with Facebook and LinkedIn offering pretty much the same thing as Twitter...well, I think Twitter needs to evolve, a bit.

A while ago, I posted about a Harvard study on Twitter that showed most people on Twitter follow a pretty small number of posters. I recently waded back into Twitter on behalf of a client and found countless accounts with one or two tweets that were months old.

What does this have to do with communication? I think communicating in 140-character bursts isn't conducive to true conversation. It's more broadcasting thoughts that may, or may not, be interesting to others.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

You know how I hate definitive lists...

Well, here's one that I think is a bit over-eager. The writer points out, with apparent glee, that press releases, press kits, faxes, press conferences and trade shows are all "dead" PR tactics.

It's easy to understand her enthusiasm; she's selling expertise in social media and, therefore, relies much on claiming that everything older than right now is, by definition, outdated.

Remember when there was brief moment in time when profits didn't seem to matter? But I digress...

Allow me to share my thoughts on each of the aforementioned "tactics:"

Press Releases - Definitely not dead. In some instances, they are changing. But there is (are?) a whole slew of media folk, top to bottom, who still like to receive their information that way. A press release, by the way, is not a tactic. It's a tool.

Press Kits - If you believe that content has any value, how can you claim "press kits" are dead? What I think she's talking about is "over-produced and over-priced" press kit packaging. Fact of the matter is, people - journalists included - still need wacky information such as company backgrounders, bios, fact sheets, and YES, press releases. Press kits, by the way, aren't tactics. They are also communications tools.

Faxes - A fax machine isn't a tactic. It's a method of communicating. As the first comment to the posting points out, there are still areas of the globe where fax is a relied-upon method of communication.

Press Conferences - I agree here, that for the most part, press conferences aren't worth the time and effort. You really need something big to pull that off successfully.

Trade Shows - From a PR perspective, there are shows that work. Then again, some don't. Again, trade shows aren't really "tactics" but part of a larger strategy. And, I'd stay away from a blanket pronouncement that leveraging trade show presence is a useless (dead) strategy.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

PR vs Advertising

Came across this interesting post from Tom Trush. A PR expert, he's not. But there are some interesting ideas to ponder if you're a small biz and considering how to spend your dollars.

This is what makes America great.

"Let's get ready to rumble."

I may owe Michael Buffer some money right now.

Watch this video and enjoy.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Message is king.

Here's a nice post from Richard Miles on the importance of the message and distinguishing between the message and the medium.

Breaking news from Brazil. Student wears mini dress and gets expelled from school!

In doing some research on the Charlotte media market, I came across this article on WSOC-TV's website. A young female student was expelled from college for wearing a mini-dress and causing such a ruckus that she had to be escorted off the campus.

Arruda made headlines after the Oct. 22 incident, in which she had to be escorted away by police after wearing the mini-dress to class. She put on a professor's white coat and left amid a hail of insults and curses.

This in the country that brings us an annual fete of skimpy clothing and promiscuity.

So, naturally, I had to search for video. I found the following. Now, I don't speak the language, but one doesn't need to when reveling in the following: the female anchor's dress, that the clip is six minutes long, and it's only Part 1.

Congratulations to Geisy Arruda for milking her 15 minutes.

Twitter Tail Wagging the Corporate Dog

OK, it's not my headline, but I liked it so much, I stole it!

Paul Oestreicher, a PR pro by any measure, offered up this interesting post about Comcast. Apparently, CEO Brian Roberts publicly noted that his company's culture had changed because of Twitter and other social media.

Read the post and you'll see what he may be placing the cart before the horse (or pick your own, perhaps better, analogy).

Sunday, November 8, 2009

PR is about what you do...

This is hard to believe, but the Russian government is looking for a PR firm to help overhaul Stalin's legacy.

Can't wait to see who wins this business.