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February 2013 Issue #1
Bringing new, out-of-the-box and contrarian thinking to our readers in PR and marketing is one key objective of Media Monitoring News. This week's issue admirably illustrates that goal.

The "new" is embodied in our featured article on a patented and still largely unknown technology that enables computers to assemble books and reports based on data found on the Internet. It's called "automated authorship" and it may have a dramatic (and hopefully beneficial) impact on PR and marketing in coming years.

The contrarian is contained in the set of articles that examines potential problems with social media. The articles serve as a counterweight to the typical hype that surrounds social media.

The out-of-the-box but highly relevant topics can be found in articles that consider who owns followers on Twitter, current issues in copyright law, and ways to improve customer communications.

This week's issue also contains instructive articles on more traditional topics including media measurement, social media program implementation and social media monitoring, content marketing and media relations during a crisis.

Happy reading!

  Bill
Editor: 
William J. Comcowich
CyberAlert, Inc.
editor@cyberalert.com
Google+

Featured Article:

Programmer Creates 800,000 Books Algorithmically, Starts Selling Them on Amazon

Extreme Tech
This is quite amazing … with major implications for marketing and PR. First a side note: back in the 60s when I was just starting my career, articles in the trade press started touting the ability of computers to write news releases. It hasn't happened yet. Or has it? Programmer Creates 800,000 Books Algorithmically, Starts Selling Them on Amazon explains and demonstrates the patented process of how Chris Parker, a marketing professor at INSEAD, assembles data on arcane subjects and then uses computer programs to draw together the data into a book or report. The computer does 100% of the work normally done by an author. The patent is called "automated authorship." The technology is especially useful for obscure or "long tail" subjects based on public data on the Internet. Many of the books listed on Amazon will not even be created until at least one buyer orders them. The 9-minute video depicts creation of a 235-page report on worldwide markets for antipsychotic drugs. The report required 13 minutes to create. Imagine using that technology for your content marketing program or proposals. The skeptic in me hopes it's not a scam.

Table of Contents
Best Recent PR & Marketing Articles
  Programmer Creates 800,000 Books Algorithmically, Starts Selling Them on Amazon
  The Big Problem with Social Media Marketing
  9 Tactics to Achieve Social Media Success
  White Paper: Hotwire Measurement Framework
  The Return of Story Telling vs. Corporate Speak
  New York Times Editor to Take 75,000 Twitter Followers Out the Door with Him
  Nine Simple Tips for Creating Twitter Hashtags
  The Nine Ingredients that Make Great Content
  20 Ways to Improve Customer Communications
  The Basics of Neuromarketing
  Must Executives Comment During a Crisis?
  News Companies Must Pay for Swiping Twitter Pictures
PR Meetings, Webinars, White Papers
PR & Marketing Job Openings
Best of Previous Issues
Media Monitoring Service — 14-Day F.R.E.E. Trial

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Featured Subject

The Big Problem with Social Media Marketing

Business 2 Community (Jeff Bulas)
Until very recently, social media platforms were the darlings of marketing and PR. They had no flaws; they were saviors. Lately, shortcomings have emerged and skeptics are questioning the value and efficiency of social media. Nay-sayers contend social media requires enormous amounts of effort for paltry returns. The Big Problem with Social Media by Jeff Bullas is a reasoned account of the shortcomings of social media as a marketing communications tool, calling it a "consistent and continual treadmill." The basic issue is how social media scale as a marketing tool. Bullas explains how social media must evolve to make it easier to create, publish, promote and manage social media content across multiple social platforms.
    It's Time to Cut Back on Social Media in Harvard Business Review contends that no organization can master all social media platforms. There is wisdom in pruning social programs and focusing on the platforms with the most impact as the key method to reduce inefficiency of social platforms.
    Psychologists are now assessing the personal effects of social media. Is Social Media Creating a Lonely Planet? by Brian Solis looks at the potential ironic outcome that posting social media updates may contribute to loneliness. The conclusion is not as perilous as the title suggests. Online interaction cultivates real relationships - but the perils of social media to personality traits such as narcissism, empathy, and self-esteem require further study.

9 Tactics to Achieve Social Media Success

Heidi Cohen
One of the very best writers today on marketing topics, Heidi Cohen concedes that social media can be overwhelming. In 9 Tactics to Achieve Social Media Success, she lays out a sensible and extraordinary well-organized plan to implement social media marketing in most any business. Point #1: set your social media goals. Point #3: monitorsocial media in your business space. Point #4: be selective in choosing your social media platforms. Point #9: measure results. It's a superb template for starting a social media marketing and PR program. More tactical pointers can be found in 26 Tips for Getting Started with Social Media Marketing in Social Media Examiner. If you prefer to learn from case studies, check out The 8 Best Social Media Campaigns of 2012 in iMedia Connection featuring Sephora, Grey Poupon, Nike Make It Count, Honda #Pintermission, and America's Got Talent.

White Paper: Hotwire Measurement Framework

Hotwire PR
With a forward by Barry Leggetter, executive director, International Association for Measurement and Evaluation of Communication (AMEC), Hotwire Measurement Framework by London-based Hotwire PR presents a well-conceived approach to implementing a PR measurement program including the brief, objectives, strategy, tactics and account management. The framework for measurement involves awareness, knowledge, consideration, support/preference, and action.

The Return of Story Telling vs. Corporate Speak

SlideShare (Ishmael's Corner, Lou Hoffman)
Back in September, Ishmael's Corner published an infographic comparing Story Telling vs. Corporate Speak which succinctly compared the two communications approaches. The Return of Story Telling vs. Corporate Speak is a slide presentation which expands on that theme delving into why storytelling equals good business. Simply put, a captivating narrative is more convincing than boring corporate speak. Making the same point, CRM Buyer, not a typical source for PR and marketing articles, questions Is Your Storytelling Smothering Your Customer Relationships? Conclusion: just say no to corporate speak.

New York Times Editor to Take 75,000 Twitter Followers Out the Door with Him

Paid Content
Who owns followers on Twitter? The person who tweets or the organization s/he works for? New York Times Editor to Take 75,000 Twitter Followers Out the Door with Him tells the story of Jim Roberts who is taking a buy-out as assistant managing editor - and is planning on taking his Twitter followers with him. That's Twitter's policy. Followers stay with the person, not the organization. It's something to think about when you appoint an individual (or agency) to tweet on behalf of your business.

Nine Simple Tips for Creating Twitter Hashtags

eConsultancy
As McDonald's demonstrated last year, misusing a Twitter hashtag can create a business crisis. Nine Simple Tips for Creating Twitter Hashtags can help marketers avoid committing some of the cardinal sins of hashtagging etiquette.

Omnibus News

The Nine Ingredients that Make Great Content

KISSmetrics
The verdict is unanimous: you need to have great content on your blog or website in order to boost SEO rankings, gain traffic and/or leads. The Nine Ingredients that Make Great Content first looks at exactly what constitutes great content and then offers examples of business websites that produce great content. By far, originality is the most important characteristic. Based on the number of articles from KISSmetrics that we've included in Media Monitoring News, it would seem that KISSmetrics may be the best example of industry-focused content that is original, thoughtful, helpful, and actionable - all characteristic of great content.

20 Ways to Improve Customer Communications

Pragmatic Marketing
There are some offbeat recommendations to 20 Ways to Improve Customer Communications. To understand just how offbeat these communications approaches are, here's one: Send your customer to your competitor. Here's another: intentionally let some prospects get away. Not all the suggestions are applicable to all businesses, but one of them could well be a magic bullet to solve one of your customer issues.

The Basics of Neuromarketing

Fast Company
The term sounds high falutin', but The Basics of Neuromarketing are quite straight-forward and apply to most every form of corporate communications: don't make it all about you; don't make it too long; seeing is better than reading; and employ emotion. Side note: the value of visuals are indisputable; the added value of a talking head video instead of text is nil.

Must Executives Comment During a Crisis?

Financial Times
Most crisis communication playbooks say that the chief executive should make the apology. Must Executives Comment During a Crisis? questions that conventional wisdom. The crisis was the major recent snowstorm in the U.K. The affected businesses include public transportation services and airports. The article includes opinions of a PR executive, corporate CEO, academic, and entrepreneur. Their answers focus more on what to say than who should say it. One interesting point: snow is inevitable. Why aren't transportation services prepared in advance with answers? Handling Media in a Crisis: Why Your Entire Team Needs to Be Prepared is Brad Phillips' Lesson #84 out of "101 Things You Absolutely, Positively Need to Know Before Your Next Interview." Even receptionists, security guards, and spouses of executives need some media relations training. Training basic: "I don't know" is a perfectly acceptable answer to media questions. Refer the question to someone who does know.

News Companies Must Pay for Swiping Twitter Pictures

Paid Content
News companies that lately have pushed hard to prevent copyright infringement and to collect fees for redistribution of their news content were caught pilfering photographs from Twitter feeds, sued, found guilty and required to pay a summary judgment of $300,000 for publishing photos without permission and with the wrong attribution. News Companies Must Pay for Swiping Twitter Pictures (but our photo laws are still a mess) tells the media version of the man bites dog story. The article includes some superficial analysis of the myriad problems with current copyright law and proffers some potential solutions. Under the current system, both publishers and users suffer. Publishers are deprived of income from their copyrighted material; users may be subjected to onerous redistribution rates imposed publishers. Opinion: the solution is mandatory licensing in which all users must pay a standardized royalty as a percentage of sales for redistribution of copyright material and all publishers must participate. The royalty levels and fee distribution are administered by a neutral party such as the copyright office.

Two Best Values in Media Monitoring

PR Meetings, Seminars, White Papers

MeetingDigital PR Next Practices Summit, sponsored by PR News, will be held February 27 in San Francisco, Ca. The early bird rate of $895 ends February 6, and the regular rate is $995.
MeetingInformation Industry Summit, IIS 2013: Breakthrough, sponsored by the Software & Information Industry Association, will be held January 30 & 31 in New York, NY. The cost to attend is $1,395 for members and $2,095 for non-members.
Meeting6th Annual Social Media for PR and Corporate Communications Conference at the Walt Disney World Resort, sponsored by Ragans, will be held February 6-8 in Orlando, FL. The cost to attend is $1,095.
MeetingContent Marketing Boot Camp, sponsored by Ragan Communications, will be held February 12 in New York, NY. The cost to attend is $495 for members and $645 for non-members.
MeetingPR Measurement Summit, sponsored by Ragan Communications, will be held March 19-20 in Washington, DC. The cost to attend is $495 for members and $645 for non-members.
MeetingSolo PR Summit, sponsored by Solo PR Pro, will be held February 20-21 in Atlanta, Ga. The cost to attend is $225 for members and $300 for non-members.
MeetingOnline Marketing Summit, sponsored by UBM Tech, will be held February 12-13 in San Diego, Ca. The cost to attend is $1,799.
MeetingSocial Media Measurement & Monitoring 2013, sponsored by Our Social Times, will be held March 26-27 in London, UK. The cost to attend is £445.00.
Meeting2013 Big Apple Awards, sponsored by PRSA-NY, you can enter the 2013 Big Apple Awards competition up until the deadline of March 4, 2013.
Meeting28th Annual SCIP Conference & Exhibition, sponsored by SCIP, will be held March 6-9 in Orlando, FL. The cost to attend is $1,650 for members and $1,900 for non-members.
White Paper"Structuring a Social Media Team," How do other organizations—from small nonprofits to multinational corporations—staff a social media team? How many people are using Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms? And what do these professionals earn?
White Paper"Changing Behavior Through PR," PRIME Research, Porter Novelli, Winning Case Study.
White PaperNew Media Relations Strategies for 2013, Visual storytelling has become the norm for news websites.
White PaperAn Introductory Guide: How to Use Twitter for Business, Master the essentials to better share, engage, & market on Twitter.
White PaperHow to Monitor Social Media in 10 Minutes a Day, Social media can be beneficial for your business, but monitoring different channels can take a lot of time. Where do you start?

PR & Marketing Job Openings

The listing for this issue includes PR job openings and marketing positions — with detailed job descriptions for each. Readers are invited to submit job postings to jobpostings@cyberalert.com.
  
Public Relations Positions
Public Relations Manager — Redbox
Public Relations Manager — Lands' End
PR/Media Relations Manager — Dunkin' Brands
Public Relations Specialist — Southcentral Foundation
Media Relations Specialist — Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service
Community Relations Manager — Port of Houston Authority
Associate Public Relations Manager — Hulu
Public Relations Manager — International Spy Museum
Marketing / PR Assistant — CyberAlert LLC
Director, Media and External Communications — Electrolux Major Appliances
Marketing Positions
Director of Social Media/Marketing — Marriott International
Director of Marketing and Communications — California Community Foundation
Logistics & Event Experience Coordinator — National Multiple Sclerosis Society
Marketing Manager, Social Media — The Jones Group Inc.
Director of Marketing & Public Relations — Southwest Health System
Project Manager, Marketing — USA TODAY
Marketing Manager — Amazon.com
Marketing Specialist — United Illuminating Co.
Marketing and Communications Manager — US Concrete
Manager of Social Media/Communications — USA Hockey Inc.
Associate Director, Research Partnerships — Michael J. Fox Foundation
Marketing / PR Assistant— CyberAlert LLC

Best of Previous Issues

Determining Your Media Monitoring Needs
Print News Monitoring Vs. Online News Monitoring
Broadcast Monitoring for TV & Radio News
Selecting a Social Media Monitoring Service
F.r.e.e & Low-Cost News Release Distribution Services

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ONLINE SOCIAL MEDIA MONITORING
BlogSquirrel - blog monitoring service monitors 7+ million new postings each day in 75+ million blogs worldwide. CyberAlert VDO - monitoring of consumer-generated video clips in 200+ online video sharing and news sites.
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