Archive for July, 2013

The C-Suite is Asking the “Wrong” Questions – Really???

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

Communication folks – ever feel like you’re bumping your head against the wall trying to get “them” to “get it”? Maybe it’s time to take a step back, do a brutally honest self-assessment and consider that maybe, just maybe, you aren’t getting it! (more…)

Provocative Gone Too Far? – IDK, but it pays to know your audience

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

One of the things I’ve done for a number of years is freelance writing. Whether I’ve been employed in a full-time job, or now as I run my own consulting business, it’s just something that I can’t bear to give up. Because I have also worked with clients to help them find PR placement opportunities, I’ve been fortunate to experience “both sides of the fence” so to speak. The situations I encounter help me in my client work and also often serve as good examples for the PR-related classes I teach. At any rate, a recent experience really resonated with me.

Is Social Media a Job, or Part of a Bigger Picture?

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

I found a recent reporter’s question intriguing: “Is social media a field of expertise in and of itself? Or will it eventually become subsumed into pretty much everything?”

My belief: ultimately, social media expertise will relate to the field of communications in the same way that graphic design, video, media relations, etc., currently fit under that umbrella.

Social media represents opportunities for communicating with an audience, but that communication does not occur in a vacuum – to be effective it needs to be part of a coordinated communication approach designed to reach some specific target audience with some specific objective. Expertise in using these tools will be important for communicators and there will likely always be a need for tactically oriented roles that focus on this area (just as, particularly in larger organizations or agencies, there continues to be the need for those who specialize in print, broadcast, web development, etc.). (more…)

Go-To Sources for Great Information on Communication-Related Issues

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

A former student recently emailed me to ask about suggestions for sources of information to help her stay up-to-date on communication-related issues. Her question made me think about the sources that I have come to rely on for current, accurate information about a wide range of communication-related issues from the traditional to the new media.

I thought others might be interested as well. So, here’s my short list of go-so sources:

All have web sites, social  media feeds and RSS/email updates. Some have a combination of free and premium (paid) services.  In addition to these tools, I also find a variety of LinkedIn Groups to be a good way to stay up-to-date on the issues that impact me, and my clients.
What about you? What tools have you found to be most useful in staying current about communication and marketing-related issues?

To Discount or Not to Discount – An Age-Old Question With No Easy Answers

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Pricing is a complex issue for any organization or business and one of the key considerations that organizations must make is whether to discount what they have to offer. Even the “big guys” sometimes get it wrong. Consider J.C. Penney’s recent missteps with their move away from discounts under short-lived CEO Ron Johnson. Pricing is one of (more…)

Developing Your Personal Brand – Yes, You Have One!

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

As someone who grew up in a family-owned business and then worked in the field of PR/corporate communications for a number of years I’ve long been well aware of how my actions, or inaction, impact not only my reputation, but the reputation of the organizations I serve. From the day long ago when my father chastised me for not returning a greeting from a classmate we ran into at a local department store to early training as a PR/media relations rep I’ve known that what I did — on or off the job — made an impression. While that knowledge, especially as a child, was sometimes burdensome, in hindsight it has served me well.

Some other early lessons: (more…)

Want to Excel at Generating Response From Your Market? Focus!

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Client question: “What’s the best way to communicate with the under-35 market?”

It’s a legitimate question and certainly marketers need to think carefully about how they will communicate with their market, recognizing that markets are different. The only problem with this question (and it’s one that most marketers ask in one form or another) is that it doesn’t go far enough to identify a specific market focus. The group of individuals who are under 35 is a very, very broad group, after all. What is the likelihood that there would be a single, “best” communication strategy for them?

When it comes to targeting marketing messages, the advice I offer, regardless of what you are attempting to sell or what response you are attempting to attain, is to (more…)