Posts Tagged ‘PR News’

How to Speak C-Suite

Friday, October 7th, 2011

Ruth Mesfun*

If you mistook the clattering of keyboards for cicadas in heat and saw your Twitter feed explode with the hashtag #prndigital, yesterday, then you were probably with me at the PR News Digital PR Next Practices Summit at the Grand Hyatt in New York City. The all-day event was a smorgasbord of useful topics and speakers flinging words such as SEO (search engine optimization), influencers, engagement, and fangate pages.

However, if you have ever spoken to your boss about using social media it probably went like this:

If your digital campaign does not translate to the C-Suite language (increased sales, decreased costs, or high ROI) then it wouldn’t matter if you grow their Twitter page to 100,000 followers. They will pull the plug. 

Here are eight steps I took from the panel on Prove the Value of Your Digital Efforts to the C-Suite featuring Margot Sinclair Savell, vice president of Measurement and Analytics at Weber Shandwick, Angela Jeffery, APR and member of IPR Commission and Nick Panayi, director of Global Brand and Digital Marketing at CSC.

1.      Define organizational goals. Make sure your goals are strictly C-suite speak. (e.g., Our goal is to increase sales by 30 percent.) That way they see that you are on the same level.

2.      Research stakeholders and prioritize. This should be done regardless if you are presenting a digital campaign or not; you should always know your audience.  

3.      Ask yourself: What do they care about? I want to add in a perfect line from Margot Sinclair Savell, “Don’t just measure communications; measure the impact on your bottom line.” 

4.      Set social media objectives that correlate with their goals. Now this is where you link your social media efforts to their C-suite objectives. (e.g., With the Twitter campaign, we are launching, our goal is to increase our followers by 50 percent and positive sentiment by 40 percent which in turn will increase our sales by 30 percent.)  

5.      Choose (the right) tools and establish benchmarks. Once your campaign has launched, use tools and benchmarks to monitor how your campaign is playing out in The Media. Remember to monitor both the social media goal and the main goal (C-suite objective).

6.      Analyze, Analyze, Analyze! Be sure to use both qualitative and quantitative metrics and have these also tie back to your communications and C-suite objectives.

7.      Present to management. Remember to add charts of correlation between the campaign and the C-suite objectives. Translate metrics into the language.  

8.      Continue to build on that foundation: monitor, analyze, and improve. Review and revamp your strategy and tactics, making sure to revise as departmental and C-suite objectives evolve. 

So, how are you proving your value of your digital efforts to the C-suite? Please share your thoughts with me, here, on BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.


Before joining the BurrellesLuce team in 2011, as social media specialist, Ruth worked as a marketing assistant in a kitchen design firm and, later interned with Turner Public Relations. She holds a BA in Economics with a minor degree in International Relations from Rowan University. In addition to economics, education, and finance – Ruth is passionate about understanding the business implications of social media, including how it can be used to increase ROI, find and maintain a career, and create a business. Connect with her on Twitter: @RuthMesfun LinkedIn: Ruth Mesfun Facebook: BurrellesLuce

PR News Facebook Conference: Engaging Your Followers – Developing a Winning Content Strategy

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

Colleen Flood*

What do you do with all your Facebook followers?

How does a brand come to life on Facebook?

These were just some of the questions addressed at a panel on “Developing a Winning Content Strategy to Engage Your Followers” at this year’s PR News Facebook Conference.

Stephanie Agresta, executive vice president and managing director of social media at Weber Shandwick, talked about the importance of assigning roles when it comes to the structure of community management. She highlighted four responsibilities that PR professionals need to consider when developing the structure of their community management team: community manager, trend expert, monitoring expert, and reporting expert.

When it comes to building a successful community, the personality of the community manager is key. It is their job to ensure that the consumer is getting value from the brand, as well as to oversee the reporting and monitoring teams. To be a good community manager, you need to: listen, be authentic and transparent, blog, and develop a social media presence. Maria Baugh, co-owner of Butter Lane Cupcakes, also affirmed that it is very important for the community manager to know your brand.

Some other takeaways for developing a winning content strategy on Facebook:

From Stephanie Agresta

  • As your community grows so should the frequency of your posts
  • Don’t hide behind your logo. Be real.
  • Measure.
  • Don’t forget about in real life – offer your community opportunity to come together outside of Facebook.

From Maria Baugh

  • Talk about your product with groups that seek you out and choose to engage with you.
  • Use Facebook to get instant feedback from and dialogue with customers. Again insights into what’s really taking place and what people want to see.
  • Be consistent in your messaging.
  • Build an authentic brand by being real – person to person – and avoid marketing speak.
  • Use all available tools, including photos, videos, polls, and promotions.
  • Decide what and when to invest for growth.

From Paull Younger, director of digital, charity: water

  • “Liking” a brand is similar to putting a bumper sticker on your car.
  • If you can’t say anything good, don’t say anything at all.
  • Focus on sharing, not publishing.
  • Every person you are connected with is a publisher – what will people share about your brand?

From Johna Burke, senior vice president of marketing, BurrellesLuce

  • All brands should not be everywhere. Understand where you can be most effective.
  • Stop using hashtags on Facebook – know the language.
  • Focus on the customer experience: awareness, engagement, persuasion, conversion, and retention.
  • Have clear calls to action; measure success.

In this way, the function of the community manager and building a Facebook community is similar to that of public relations practitioner. Securing media placements is not unlike securing tweets, blog posts, and Facebook posts. Ensure the target audience – regardless of the outlet – receives something of value and feels connected to your brand or client.

Got more tips for effectively using Facebook and creating quality content? Share your thoughts with me and the readers of BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.

Potential for Viral-Level Activity on Facebook?

Wednesday, July 20th, 2011
Flick Image: raphaelle_ridarch

Flick Image: raphaelle_ridarch

Are you responsible for growing your Facebook page? If so, and if your sole motivation is quantitative and not engagement, you may be able to use the latest update to drive your goal. The new Facebook administrator change is a new/old change and allows administrators to send a notification to “Like” your page versus the old method of sending email notifications that were often lost in the shuffle.

Why does this matter? Now, you can simply link to “Invite Friends” and not worry the call to action will be lost somewhere – as these invites come up as Facebook notifications rather than generic recommendations. The interesting option suggested on Inside Facebook is to increase the number of administrators to your page to help drive growth of new pages.  This gave me moment for pause because of the security ramifications. But, if Facebook is the preferred medium and the community owns the space and the page creator has taken the time to make informed decisions about who else they would like to have admin their page then, perhaps, this wouldn’t be as scary an option.

Facebook is being cautious with the use of this feature and is only making this available to administrators with the initial launch of a new page. Still, there’s the potential conflict that this free function could interfere with paid marketing efforts.

My advice. Try it. If you’re comfortable, increase your administrators for a week and see if you improve your conversion and overall numbers. If you do, please share your results here, on Fresh Ideas, so we can all learn.

If you want to experience a whole day of learning all about Facebook, please join PR News for the August 9th Facebook Conference in San Francisco. BurrellesLuce is a sponsor and I look forward to seeing you there.

Measurement and the Barcelona Principles: Angie Jeffrey, VMS, Interview With Johna Burke, BurrellesLuce, at the 2011 PR News Measurement Conference

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

Transcript –

JOHNA BURKE: Hello, this is Johna Burke with BurrellesLuce, and we’re here at the PR News Measurement conference. I’m joined by Angie.

Angie, will you please introduce yourself?

ANGIE JEFFREY: Angie–I’m Angie Jeffrey, vice president of integrated media for VMS.

BURKE: Angie, you spoke earlier about the Barcelona principles. Can you talk a little bit about the validated metrics for those that weren’t here to experience those, about what those mean to PR and to PR campaigns?

JEFFREY: Yes. The validated metrics guidelines were put together by a group of people from AMEC and PRSA who wanted to make public relations measurement much more–much more valid, and to give an alternative to ad value equivalency.  And they take into account three phases of public relations on the left-hand part of the matrix, and on the top they go through the five stages of the communications funnel so that you go from a very simplistic type of measure down to outcomes, business outcomes, much more complex. But the goal of the program would be to work a client down through that grid to that business outcome.

BURKE: Excellent. And I know that part of the benefit of being an AMEC member is having that international influence, and we look forward to seeing how those Barcelona principles continue to develop and influence measurement. Angie, can you tell people where they can connect with you online and in social media?

JEFFREY: Sure, Johna. I’m @ajeffrey1, which is A-J-E-F-F-R-E-Y-1, or my regular e-mail address is

BURKE: Thanks so much, Angie.

Top Five BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas Posts for the Month of April 2011: Smart Goal Setting, Brand Simplicity, and More

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Smart Goal Setting for 2010 smart goal setting concept
This post proves that setting “SMART” goals is always timely. To ensure success and empower ourselves to achieve both our professional and personal goals, goals need to be specific, measureable, attainable, relevant, and fit within a defined time frame.


When It Comes to Brands and Content, Simplicity Matters iStock_Communication_Small
The practice of using simple language to engage and connect with a target audience has always been an important part of solid communications. However, this is often easier said than done – especially for PR professionals working in specialty fields where communicating complex information is the norm. Few people have little patience for jargon and pretentious language. And this is equally true for journalists and bloggers who are often working under tight deadlines. This post reflects on several questions savvy PR professionals must ask themselves before pitching “Aunt Edna” and “Uncle Walt.”