Posts Tagged ‘SXSW’


Digital Marketing Insights from the Mid-Atlantic Marketing Summit

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

Social media is boring, so let’s find a way to influence the physical world, says Peter Corbett, CEO of iStrategyLabs, when highlighting his latest projects during the Mid-Atlantic Marketing Summit on April 20. The full-day event, sponsored by the Capitol Communicator and Potomac Tech Wire, was held at Gannett headquarters and included insights from marketing, communications, advertising and public relations experts.

With many folks overwhelmed by the number of social media platforms available, one panel attempted to put the social networkings into perspective. Moderated by Geoff Livingston, vice president of strategic partnerships at Razoo, the panelists looked at several options beyond Facebook and Twitter and shared what worked for their organizations. All the panelists encouraged participants to find out what platforms their core audience use.

Commenting on Google+ users, Kevin Dando, director of digital marketing and communications at PBS, says the site is just a place for men to talk about being on Google+. However, you shouldn’t discount Google+ because it will help your website’s page rank. Additionally, Google+ and YouTube are becoming closer and will soon have shared search. On the other side of the spectrum, Pinterest has mostly female users and can be very effective for visual campaigns.

PBS, like other TV networks, needs to be on GetGlue, a platform that allows users to check into TV shows and other entertainment media. Dando says shows with live Twitter events have ratings one percent higher than those without. He commented Tumblr doesn’t drive a lot of traffic, but it does have a lot of engagement.

The role of chief marketer has become chief storyteller, says Debra Lavoy, director of product marketing at OpenText. You should use the story to pull the team together and that content marketing should be renamed substance marketing.

If his marketing budget was increased, Vocus’s Jason Jue says he would wish for more storytellers. (Download this PR Storytelling tip sheet from BurrellesLuce). Speaking of storytellers, when I asked the Beyond Facebook and Twitter panel if they could review Storify, they said they were all fans, especially for events. At SXSW, they said they barely left a session before someone would post all the tweets from the event to a new Storify.

Examples of brands using marketing and social media for good and helping causes were also abundant. For example, Terry Macko, senior vice president of communications and marketing for the World Wildlife Fund, discussed WWLF teaming with Coke to raise awareness about the environment. Despite backlash and confusion over the white cans, the campaign raised over two million dollars.

The summit inspired several great blog posts, including:

PR Takes the Lead: A Cautionary Tale

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

Gail Nelson
Last week’s Ad Age article, “How PR Chiefs Have Shifted Toward Center of Marketing Departments was the talk of the public relations Twitterati. But in one instance where PR was given responsibility for overall marketing of a Fortune 500 firm, it’s not turning out so well.

This Sunday, as my friend and I enjoyed a leisurely lunch at Ana Beall’s in Westfield, NJ (yum!) we dissected the sad case of leading with the creative idea.

In this large company, marketing reports to the chief communications officer (CCO), A strong PR campaign featuring researched-based creative can attract new customers during the recession.  whose background is in public affairs. Wanting to attract new customers during this recession, the CCO agreed that new advertising was in order.  Here’s the FAIL, though: Being fond of a popular song, it appears he asked the advertising agency to design an ad using that song without conducting any research. As a result, neither the song nor the visuals have much to do with the brand or the firm’s customers. Here’s an unfortunate postscript: Ad placement for a very strong campaign featuring research-based creative was de-funded a year earlier.

Neither my friend nor I are privy to the inner workings of this company. But given the circumstances, it was wasn’t a shock to learn  that this executive will not be in charge of marketing and advertising much longer: The hunt is on for a strong CMO.

Now, I am not saying that a creative PR idea can’t launch a company’s fortunes. This weekend, I read the story of Twitter’s founding as told by author @shelisreal in his new book, Twitterville. Twitter invested its meager resources in a smart campaign at the 2007 South by Southwest (SXSW) conference; Its clever tradeshow strategy knocked a competing micro-blogging service out of the market, tripled the roster of  users, and secured Twitter’s future.   

But back to our Fortune 500 company: Will this company ever again trust a public relations practitioner with strategic oversight of marketing? Does this gaffe make the case for a broader strategic curriculum in PR education and/or wider professional certification? Please share your thoughts with me and the readers of BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.