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July 2013 Issue #2

Feature Article:

Sponsored Content: Pay for Placement Issues

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PR Jobs, Meetings and White Papers

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Feature Article:

Sponsored Content: Pay for Placement Issues

Marketing Profs / New York Times / Dummies / FTC / Gawker
Most bloggers (60%) charge fees of $50 to $500 to work with brands or publish sponsored content. Though How Much Bloggers Charge to Publish Sponsored Content offers details on the practice, it does not provide an analysis of the propriety of "pay for placement" practices. If a blogger charges a fee for publication, should sponsored content be labeled differently from normal editorial content to signal the reader that the content is not "independent and objective?" With such labeling, does sponsored content lose at least some of its value? And how is sponsored content best valued — by space, or like an ad?
        The New York Times examines these issues from the corporate viewpoint in Sponsors Now Pay for Articles, Not Just Ads with examples of "pay to publish" content in mainstream online publications such as Forbes and Huffington Post. At a time when print publications are struggling financially, "pay to publish" creates a new revenue stream, as explained in Growth of Content Marketing Provides Opportunity for Publishers. The article analyzes the publishers' business perspective and editorial obligations with sponsored content. That obligation is to subject sponsored content to the same rigorous editorial review as traditional news and opinion pieces. Based on the quality of writing from its "contributors," Forbes seems to be closely vetting all sponsored content.
        In March, The Washington Post became the first metro daily to announce it would start using sponsored content. Its BrandConnect clearly labels sponsored content. If publications do not distinguish editorial and sponsored content, then both will lose value. For Dummies recommends that bloggers, like The Washington Post, Create Separation between Sponsored and Editorial Content — and explains various ways to do it. To assure compliance and standardization, the FTC published ".com Disclosures," a guide to understanding exactly how to disclose sponsored content in social media including "Endorsements and Testimonials" in Tweets, Facebook ads, blog posts, and mobile ads. Bottom line: transparency is mandatory. If not, trouble ensues as illustrated by New York Times Blogger Demanded Travel and Expenses from Companies.
For PR Pros

Understanding the Cycle of Media Attention …And What It Means for Story Placements

Seth Godin
Getting placements is hard enough. Getting placements to "trend" is even more difficult. Understanding the different audiences in The Cycle of Media Attention, from initial story placement to "going viral," to the stage that includes the belligerence of talk radio, can help provide better assessment of reach and impact.

Hashtags & PR

Hashtracking Blog / Razor Social / Simply Measured
Following specific Twitter hashtags is one effective way to monitor the latest happenings that may affect your business. 10 Hashtags Your Business Cannot Ignore identifies the CATEGORIES of hashtags that are important for any business or not-for-profit organization. They include: competitors; industry topics; industry experts; industry conferences; trade organizations; and news. Each business must then identify the Hashtags specific to its industry and issues. Useful Twitter Hashtag Analytics Tools reviews three tools to identify influencers, find useful links and references, analyze trends and more. How to Use Hashtags for Competitive Analysis delves into one key application of hashtag monitoring. Though not specifically about hashtags, 10 Ways to Measure Twitter Audience beyond Follower Count shares methods into measurement of reach and influence of tweets.

The Investor Relations Website: Must-Haves and Should-Haves

CommPro.biz
What content should an investor relations site include? Ibrey Woodall of Business Wire divides it into Must-Haves and Should-Haves for an IR Site. Must-haves include the annual report in a readily-accessible and downloadable format, along with SEC documents, corporate governance documents and proxy statements — in other words, the documents that provide transparency to professional investors. The Should-haves include analyst reports, press releases, email notices, FAQ, near real time stock quote, and events/presentations. All content should be formatted for easy viewing on mobile phones and tablets.

Secrets to Pitching Creative Services to Big Brands and Companies

Planning Pod
Usually, big brands and companies hire big agencies to do their creative work. But sometimes smaller agencies with specialized experience get a shot at a specific facet of the business. 5 Secrets to Pitching Your Design Firm (or Any Other Creative Service) to Big Brands (or Companies) suggests key tactics for a successful presentation. In-depth preparation is essential to get to know the company, the brand and the decision-makers. The presentation must focus on your highly specialized capabilities. It's also important to make it clear you know how to play in the big leagues that require detailed standards and reporting. Finally, use case studies with demonstrable results to prove your capabilities.

The Information CEOs Expect from PR and Corporate Communications

The Measurement Standard
Modeled on Peter Drucker's "Information Executives Truly Need," What CEOs Need and Want from Their PR and Communications Functions by Fraser Likely proposes a framework under which communications executives supply the C-Suite with five types of information: foundation information about budgets and benchmarking; productivity reports on requirements, processes, and accomplishments; competence data on staff and corporate results; resource assessments on how staff, financial and other resources are allocated; and environmental analysis of relationships with key external and internal constituencies.

PR Preparations for a Social Media Catastrophe

ARCompany
Many organizations still avoid social media for fear of customer complaints and a potential PR crisis. Preparing for a PR Social Media Crisis contends that organizations overestimate the incidence, dangers and consequences of social media missteps. They therefore avoid social media and hamper or paralyze their marketing efforts. Understanding and preparing for the pitfalls can allay social media fears. Author Amy Tobin outlines the basic steps to prepare for a social media dust-up: admit misgivings and the causes; review and fix customer service issues; allow unhindered conversations with customers; assemble the right team; be prepared for spontaneity.

Two Best Values in Media Monitoring

For Marketers & Social Media Specialists

Why Implement the New Social Media Measurement Standards

The Measurement Standard
As revealed in the feature article in last week's issue, a consortium of PR, social media and media measurement organizations has promulgated a new set of PR measurement standards. Katie Paine, in her typical "let's get it done" style, outlines 7 Reasons Why You Should Implement the New Standards Now. To prove Katie right is not one of the seven reasons. In short, applyingstandards will make you smarter, save you time and money, put your measurement program on equal footing with everyone else, and make vendor selection easier. Successfully implementing the standards will also make switching jobs easier and make you a more attractive job candidate.

Using Online Video and Social Media to Stimulate Business Growth

Jay Baer
Gary Vaynerchuck grew a family wine business from $5 million to $45 million largely through online video and social media. From his experience, Jay Baer enumerates 32 Lessons for Online Video Social Media Marketing Success. Some key items: show your face and your personality in your marketing; be distinctive, even eccentric; create an enthusiastic and outspoken fan-base, continually listen to your customer base and make corrections based on customer feedback; promote incessantly especially in online video; small guys need to find and own a niche.

8 Challenges to Measuring Social Media Performance

BBC
Simon Kendrick, an audience analyst for the BBC, examines Eight Challenges to Measuring Off-Site Social Media Performance. The BBC's social media measurement issues apply to most organizations. They include: lack of a single credible measurement source such as Nielsen for TV or Arbitron for radio in the U.S.; limited ability to identify geographic source of social media posts; inability to aggregate data across multiple accounts; lack of standardization of metrics and measurement approaches across social media platforms; ability to distinguish active users of social media from inactive - that is, lack of recency data; ambiguity in sentiment analysis; difficulty in measuring any form of impact.

Social Media Monitoring in Market Research

eConsultancy
Social media monitoring tools, such as CyberAlert Buzz, can quickly and easily mine thousands of conversation about companies and brands. The results of social media monitoring are additive to traditional market research in its ability to uncover trends not previously spotted, or in verifying findings from traditional research methods. Using Social Media Monitoring for Market Research examines various research applications of media monitoring including competitive intelligence, identifying audiences, and insights into consumer audiences.

Content Marketing: Are You Doing It Wrong?

Salesforce.com Blog / Copyblogger / Hubspot
In jumping on the content marketing bandwagon, many companies fail to apply key connections that transform content marketing into lead generation and sales. Among the 8 Content Marketing Principles Most Companies Get Wrong are: content should serve the audience, not the company; volume and speed trump perfection and polish; and content is wasted without a call to action. Once you've bought into the key principles, then you have to create relevant content. How to Find More Content Ideas Than You'll Ever Be Able to Write explains how to mine a rich vein of content ideas with three questions. The first is: What questions in your industry is no one willing to answer? Answer them and you'll fulfill the first principle of content marketing: serve the audience, not the company. To assure you're meeting high quality standards for content marketing articles, you can refer to The Ultimate Editing Checklist to assess articles.

Lessons from Great Social Media Campaigns

eConsultancy
Examining winning campaigns is an effective way to spark new campaign ideas. Adapting the approaches of 5 Great Social Media Campaigns and Their Metrics may help you generate a winning campaign of your own. Creative Marketing Ideas from 10 Thought Leaders might also spur some creative thinking on marketing issues. Ideas we like: "the more content I put out, the luckier I get" by Gary Vaynerchuck and "stop ignoring, start answering" by Marcus Sheridan.

The Conversation Prism — 2013 Social Media Platform Landscape

Brian Solis
In one graphic, Brian Solis captures the social media landscape and the specific market position of most every social media platform. Reproductions of the graphic have appeared in many places in the past week, but most versions are unreadable. This version of The Conversation Prism is both readable and expandable.
       Yet by highlighting social scoring platforms like Klout and Kred in the influence category, the prism misses a bigger part of the influence picture, Danny Brown contends in Why the Conversation Prism Misses the Boat on Influence. In the article, Brown appends his debate with Solis on LinkedIn to discuss whether Kred and Klout truly are social networks that can accurately gauge influence. As Brown opines, both platforms offer limited, if any, networking opportunities. Rather, platforms that should have been included in the influence line: Tellagence, which tracks the flow of influential communities and how they change; Appinions, which uses offline data and reactions to measure influence; and Measurely, which identifies the sentiment behind content and social media posts.

Facts, Fun & Inspiration

Brain Picking Etiquette: How to Ask Nicely; How to Refuse Nicely

Forbes / Marie Forleo / Open Forum
"May I pick you brain for a few minutes?" It's a phrase we've all heard and used. To some, it's a compliment. To others, it's a major transgression as evidenced in No You Can't Pick My Brain. It Costs Too Much by consultant Adrienne Graham. In her view, the questionner is asking for free advice for which she charges her clients — and "it's not gonna happen, sorry." A 6-minute video by Marie Forleo How to Say No to People Who Want to Pick Your Brain takes a softer path to saying no - and moving the brain picker to paying client status. Lesson: consultants are touchy about giving away advice. Tread carefully. In contrast, 6 Ways to Let People Pick Your Brain without Wasting Your Time suggests ways to filter the pickers, focus the picking and set limits while still being gracious in sharing expertise.

Breaking Out of Your Comfort Zone (and Why You Should)

LifeHacker
Pushing the boundaries of your normal work routine to do something extraordinary can be daunting, but exhilarating. What is the comfort zone? Why is it so hard to leave it? How do you break out of it? What are the benefits? That's what The Science of Breaking Out of Your Comfort Zone (and Why You Should) attempts to answer. Short take answers: "the comfort zone" is your secure space; "anxiety" is the reason few attempt to leave it. When you break free, you'll be more productive, deal better with change, have more personal fire to accomplish more. Check out the specific steps to break out of a comfort zone at work.

Problem-Solving: 5 "Whys" Technique

Wikipedia / Knowledge Solutions
Problem-solving may well be the most important business skill. Almost incomprehensibly, a well-orchestrated trouble-shooting technique can resolve most process or product design issues in only five steps or iterations. The 5 Whys is a question-asking technique aimed at getting to the root cause of a problem. The system uses the Isikawa diagram as its primary technique. In creative services like marketing and PR the problem-solving process involves the well-known 7 Ps: Product=Service, Price, Place, Promotion, People/personnel, Process, Physical Evidence. Stepwise assessment of each factor will usually lead to a solution. The Five Whys Technique by Olivia Serrat from Knowledge Solutions deftly explains how to apply the system to most any problem. Eight Disciplines Problem Solving (8D), created by the Department of Defense, is another effective system of team-oriented problem solving.

Fast Food: The Highest Calorie Menu Items

Market Watch
Most of us try to watch our weight and calories, but also eat at fast food restaurants with high-fat, high-calorie foods. The Highest Calorie Items at 10 Fast Food Chains identifies the "should avoid" selections on the menu. Warning: watch out for those breakfast items!

Factoids of the Week:

78% of a brand's Facebook fans are already customers — Click Z
77% of Global Fortune 100 companies have a Twitter account and 48% are now on Google+ — Otherside Group.

Quote of the Week:

"The two most important days of your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why." — Mark Twain

Upcoming Conferences and Webinars

PR News' Digital PR Awards, hosted by PR News, will be accepting entries through July 19. The cost is $350 per entry and $525 for late entries from July 13 through July 20.
The Crucial Secret to Surviving Crisis, hosted by James E. Lukaszewski, will be held July 18. The cost to register for the webinar is $195.
The 4th Annual PR Summit, hosted by VentureBeat, will be held July 30 in San Francisco, Ca. The cost to attend is $350.
PR News' Next Practices Annual Conference, hosted by PR News, will be held Aug. 6 in San Francisco, Ca. The cost to attend is $795.
Digital PR Best Practices Conference, hosted by Ragan Communications, will be held Aug. 15 in San Francisco, Ca. The cost to attend is $745.
TRENDS 2013, hosted by Marketing Cloud, will be held July 18. The virtual conference is free to attend.

Recent White Papers and eBooks

5 Key Steps to Social Media Engagement. The five steps to track and monitor social media engagement, including easy steps to start engaging with customers as soon as possible.
Insiders' Tips for Placing More Stories in the Media. Four frontline PR pros share their thoughts on how to cultivate and sustain long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with journalists.
Leveraging Social Data Expertise to Maximize the Value of Social Listening. Top-performing brands capitalize on the skills and experience of outside analysts to generate actionable insights from social data.

Omnibus News

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
Communications Specialist — Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF)
Media/Public Relations Specialist — Baptist Health of Northeast Florida
PR Specialist — Yelp
Public Relations Specialist — The Humane Society of the U.S.
Assistant Director, Public Relations — Boys & Girls Clubs of America
Communications Assistant — American College of Surgeons
Sr Publicist — The Walt Disney Studios
Public Affairs Specialist — Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Communications Manager — Braun Intertec Corporation
Marketing Positions
Marketing Assistant — Applied Research Associates, Inc.
Senior Marketing Associate — Kitchell Corporation
Product & Market Research Manager — Porsche Latin America
Associate Marketing Manager — AAA Auto Club Enterprises
Marketing Engagement Coordinator — PETA
Marketing Services Manager — PGA TOUR, Inc.
Marketing Manager — Yapstone
International Marketing Manager — Little Caesars
Brand Manager — AMN Healthcare
Marketing Content Specialist — Morningstar
Marketing Analyst — Kohler Co.

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

NEWS MONITORING
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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.
Netpinions - consumer discussion / word-of-mouth / buzz monitoring service monitors 100,000+ online message boards, forums, and Usenet news groups. Twitter & Facebook - Monitor your key words in all Twitter tweets and all Facebook public posts.
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