Posts Tagged ‘Deirdre Breakenridge’


Measuring Social Media: The Value of Influence

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Valerie Simon

“Influence is about the value you give,” emphasized Deirdre Breakenridge, author and President of Mango! Marketing at the February 15th PRSA NJ Measurement and Evaluation workshop on Monitoring and Determining ROI for Digital/Social Media. Breakenridge also noted that it is extremely important to consider the platform(s) where those you are targeting spend time. Measuring social media is about going where your audience is; if you are trying to reach teens, for example, consider focusing your efforts on Tumblr.

Here are some additional thoughts on evaluating influencers Breakenridge shared with me during this video interview following the event.


 

As we continue to counsel BurrellesLuce clients on new ways to identify influencers and listen to them across all types of media and platforms, one thing is apparent: the elusive influencer is not one who can be discovered by simply noting fans or followers. The power of a particular influencer may change based upon their platform, subject matter, and perhaps most importantly, the demographics and interests of your target audience (hint, no matter how “influential” Lady Gaga is reported to be, if you are attempting to convince my dad where to vacation, find another influencer). 

So what is the real secret to identifying key influencers for your community? It begins with taking the time to get to know your community. Listen. Understand who (and what) motivates them. Consider how you can help brand evangelists to become true influencers and how you can encourage influencers to become consistent and loyal brand evangelists.

What is your definition of an influencer and how do you determine the influencers that matter most to your brand, organization, or client? Who are your favorite examples of influencers and why? The comments are all yours. 

Required Reading for PR Professionals

Friday, August 27th, 2010

Valerie Simon

Required Reading for PR ProfessionalsAs interns head into the office for the first time this fall, eager to make a good impression and begin a successful career, wouldn’t it be nice to be given a reading list…a list of books that hold the secrets and lessons to give you that extra advantage? I decided to ask a few leaders in the PR industry, “Is there a book you’d consider ‘required reading’? Something you wish every new hire read prior to their first day on the job?” Here are their responses:

Beyond How-to and PR 2.0
“I think better than any how-to or PR 2.0 book are business bios that inspire,(e.g., Howard Schulz, J. Dyson), books re: creativity, and Mad Men,” says Dorothy Crenshaw, CEO and creative director Crenshaw Communications. Personally, I love reading the biographies of successful business leaders; in fact, Howard Schulz’s “Pour Your Heart Into It” has a special place on my bookshelf.

Good for All Levels
Stephanie Smirnov, president, Devries PR suggests “Making News in the Digital Era” by David Henderson.

Global Clientele and Mega Trends
Alex Aizenberg , group manager, Weber Shandwick: “Hot, Flat, and Crowded” and “The World Is Flat” both by Tom Friedman.

Must Reads
Richard Laermer, founder and CEO, RLM Public Relations: “Elements of Style” by E.B. White and “On Writing Well” by Wiliam Zinsser.

Start Your Career Right
Christine Barney, CEO Rbb Public Relations: “The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn’t” by Robert Sutton.

The World Around You
As Stefan Pollack, president of The Pollack PR Marketing Group points out, “With today’s explosion of information, to me, required reading is to read everything one can get their hands on.  Books, eBooks, white papers, blogs, etc..Today’s entry level pro needs to up their level of intellectual curiosity and their life experiences. They need to know more about everything and as important link it to their pursuit for a career in PR.” Pollack’s recommendation: “the Book of Life, the life that is around you both near and far. By upping one’s intellectual curiosity, new hires, run the greater chance of understanding the contextual relevance of what they read when applying it to what they do. ”

As for my suggestions? Attempting to choose a single book to offer up as required reading is certainly not easy. My friends at BurrellesLuce and I frequently pass around books and a few of my favorite books, among those that have circulated, include:

But I think that if I could mandate a single book as required reading for new hires, I’d just stick to an old favorite: “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. While Carnegie may have written the book in 1936, the simple lessons are timeless and perhaps more important today than ever before.

What book would you suggest a new employee reads before coming on board at your organization?

When PR Experts Emerge As Tastemakers…

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Valerie Simon

Last Friday I attended PRSA T3 conference and as promised, I wanted to share a glimpse of my experience with you. The incredible line-up put together by conference co-chairs, Rich Teplitsky PRSA Technology section chair and my #PRStudChat partner, 2.0 expert and author Deirdre Breakenridge, offered a full day of lively sessions,  including an intriguing session by Christine Perkett, President of PerkettPR, on “Driving your own influence: PR experts as influencers.”  Here are some of the key tips and takeaways from Christine’s presentation, provided by Heather Mosley of PerkettPR.

In the field of public relations, as within any other industry, “stars” emerge. Those who offer value and receive exposure gain attention. And while in the field of PR it is usually our clients who take center stage, Christine’s presentation highlighted tastemakers such as fashion PR maven Kelly Cutrone and social media experts such as Brian Solis who have become influencers in their own right. She encouraged those seeking to become influencers to share; write a book, offer quotes for a book, blog and tweet. Christine also cautioned that while sharing and participating in social media is essential, equally important is the need to offer value. Consider everything you put out there especially in writing, and what value it offers to others.

Following the session, Christine shared a few thoughts with me for young PR practitioners who seek to become influencers.

So here is my question to BurrellesLuce readers: What are your thoughts on PR experts as influencers? Is it the role of the PR practitioner to stay behind the brand, or do those PR influencers who are able to emerge as veritable tastemakers offer an added value to both clients and their community?

Integrating Social and Real-Life Networking

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

Valerie Simon

Integrating Social and I could not be more excited to attend the PRSA T3 conference on June 11, 2010. The co-chairs, PRSA Technology section chair Rich Teplitsky and my #PRStudChat partner, 2.0 expert and author Deirdre Breakenridge, have put together an incredible agenda of topics and speakers that are sure to excite anyone looking to stay ahead of the curve in public relations and social networking.

Here are a few of the ways I’ll be integrating social media into my conference experience to assure I make the most of the opportunity.

Advance preparation

  • Twitter: If you follow me on Twitter, you may already have seen that I’ve begun tweeting about the conference, speakers, and other attendees using the hashtag #techprsa. In addition, I’ve participated in a pre-conference Twitter Chat and started a Twitter list of T3 attendees, so that I could get to know them better outside of the hashtag. I’ve even set up a column using hootsuite.com to begin monitoring pre-conference conversation using the conference hashtag.
  • LinkedIn: I’m a longtime member of the PRSA LinkedIn Group and am watching closely a discussion posted by Nicole Zerillo, marketing communications social media manager, PRSA, regarding the conference. I also joined the PRSA technology section group which is much more focused on the upcoming conference than the general PRSA group on LinkedIn.
  • Facebook: My Facebook account is really more personal, than professional, but sometimes the lines blur a bit. For example, I’m keeping a close eye on the PRSA Facebook page and have left a comment on one discussion about the T3 conference.
  • Google Reader (RSS): I’ve confirmed that the blogs of all speakers are in my Google Reader and organized them in a special folder. Now to continue adding the blogs of other attendees I anticipate meeting…
  • General Social Media: When it gets a bit closer to the event, I plan to update my status on all social sites and share that I will be attending the event. 

As important as the online preparation is, don’t forget the value of offline communication. Many speakers are also authors; in fact, I am hoping to finish speaker Justin Levy’s book, Facebook Marketing: Designing Your New Marketing Campaign, before hearing his session!

Live attendance
When the big day comes, I’ll be there early. While a conference offers many opportunities to share information live, I don’t intend to focus on live blogging/micro-blogging. I am there to take advantage of the benefits of face-to-face networking and learning. Perhaps I’ll tweet a few of the brilliant remarks from speakers, but only if I find that it is not distracting me from making the most of what is happening in that room.

But don’t worry, I won’t forget about you, the readers of BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas. I’ll bring my flip cam, in hopes of introducing you later to some of the incredible people I meet. Perhaps I’ll take a few photos to share; I’ve really enjoyed the Whrrl stories created by Perkett PR… maybe it’s time I create my own, or perhaps interview some of the speakers for a future Fresh Ideas or Public Relations Examiner post.

Conference follow-up
I am sure that I will return from the conference with many new connections and valuable resources and expect that the night (and weekend) after the conference, I’ll be very busy. In general, I make it a point to follow EVERY new contact on Twitter (and plan to add those from the conference to my T3 PR Twitter list); this allows me the opportunity to continue listening and learning from them. And I send personal LinkedIn invitations to those I have connected with, and want to be sure I keep in my network. 

I’ll also be downloading video and sifting through notes, taking some time to contemplate all that I heard and learned, before sitting down to blog. And finally, I intend to make a trip to Barnes and Noble. (I always seem to walk away from these conferences with some great new book recommendations.)

Whew. It seems like a lot, but I am a firm believer that there is a direct correlation between investment and return. What steps do you take to maximize the opportunities of the conferences you attend? What are your plans for this year’s PRSA T3 conference? How are you integrating social and real-life networking and capitalizing on the ROI?

Afraid of Tweeting on Twitter? You Are Not Alone…

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

by Colleen Flood*

I set up a Twitter handle months ago, maybe even a year ago, (@cgflood) so I could follow my clients and the trends in my industry.  I had some followers, but never garnered the courage to tweet anything.  I was so afraid I might say the wrong thing, use the wrong symbols (# @, etc.) that I never tweeted…until now. 

Flickr Image: cjc4454

Flickr Image: cjc4454

I came to San Diego for the International PRSA Conference (#PRSA09) and attended a “tweetup” the first night.  A tweetup is a gathering of tweeters who get together in person to socialize. (For a more in-depth look at tweetups and how you can get the most out of them, check out this BurrellesLuce white paper.) Many at this particular tweetup had never met each other face-to-face before.  While at the event, many people I met were asking me for my handle or address on Twitter and I reluctantly gave it to them, saying: “I don’t really tweet so you don’t have to follow me.” 

The following day I attended a professional development workshop, at #PRSA09, titled Social Media and the PR (R)evolution: It’s Not Just PR Anymore. (more…)