Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Shrinking budgets make blogs appealing

The shift has begun. In the final chapter of Paul Gillin's The New Influencers he discusses the how the shift from traditional marketing - where the big $ is spent - to peer to peer marketing will slowly continue to change.

However, I would argue that the recent economic crises has changed that. With unemployment on the rise and companies scrambling to slash budgets, now is the best time for organizations to make their moved to break into the blogosphere.

This will not be an isolated trend.

As many bloggers are quick to point out, the technology surrounding this medium is developing so rapidly, that many organizations are now able to utilize and thus analyze blogs and social media networks in a quantifiable way.

For example, organizations like Telligent are creating social media analytics tools. According to a post on the Wall Street Journal, Telligent has announced the release of a new analytics tool that has the ability to:
Harvest 2.0 provides deep analysis and trending on how people are contributing within a community and helps enterprise organizations prove the value of their social computing investments.
New innovations in Harvest 2.0 include:

-- Social Fingerprints(TM) -- View the unique social fingerprint of every member of your community and quickly see how they contribute.

-- Scorecards -- Quickly summarize important information and enable community managers and business owners to understand the pulse of the community.

-- Sentiment and Tonality -- See what people are saying--either positively or negatively--in your community. Visual trending information lets you know immediately what people think.

-- Forecasting -- Predict future behavior based on current trends. Know where your customers are going before they get there.

-- Widgets and RSS -- All reports created within Harvest are reusable as either widgets or through RSS, enabling the reuse of data back into the community.
I believe social analytics tools such as these will continue to spur the rapid movement from traditional marketing mediums to blogs and social media sites.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

12 million to one, a lesson in pitching

Spam, the bane of all that is Internet. A pesky relic that remains from the dark ages of the Internet, when all was ruled by the simple phrase, "you've got mail."

However, in recent years, many public relations practitioners have had the misfortune of inheriting the occupational slur, "spammers."

Disgusting, I know.

But, to my dismay, I know this title isn't completely unwarranted. With increasing access to media gatekeepers via the Internet, PR practitioners are finding it increasingly easier to blast out "spam" pitches to any and all parties they can reach.


Conventional wisdom may lead you to believe more e-mails = more media coverage, but this couldn't be further from the truth. And the proof is in the pudding, and by pudding I mean an article posted on techradar.com.

According to techradar.com, for every 12.5 million spam e-mails, one response is received.

What does this mean for PR practitioners? Well, if you started pitching 500 leads each day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year for 50 years, you would convert on 1 media placement.

Not a particularly efficient method.

Moral of the story, sending out mass "spam" pitches just isn't efficient, and will not generate the results your organization is hoping for.

My suggestion, personalize your pitches and understand you're not talking to another computer, but rather another human being. Take the time to learn about those you're pitching, and don't send out releases containing no newsworthy information.