Make Video An Integral Part Of Your 2018 Marketing

Make Video An Integral Part Of Your 2018 Marketing

As many of you know, I love brainstorming with my team to distill ideas and tips that not only can be useful in working on behalf of our clients, but also to share with you in the PR Insider. This week my creative team and I were in the middle of just such a session when Jay York, our senior social media strategist, intrigued me with his thoughts about current trends in video marketing. Let’s face it. With today’s technology, combined with the vast reach of social media, it’s easier than ever to create your own video segments that can become an integral part of your overall marketing strategy. You don’t even need a studio worthy of “Good Morning, America” or special effects that would make you the envy of George Lucas. In fact, the less formal the production is the better. And once you arrive at your finished product, you can put your video on Youtube, share it on other social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and post a link to it from your website. Frankly, you can get a lot of marketing mileage out of just one video – but you shouldn’t stop there because there are so many approaches you can take. You might create a series of short messages filled with insights into your area of expertise. You might want to show your company culture with glimpses of team-building outings for example. It can show you’re a fun company to work with, or that you’re philosophically aligned and share commonalities with potential clients. These can be deciding factors when choosing a company to... read more
2018 Is Your Time To Shine

2018 Is Your Time To Shine

The start of a New Year is always a great time to focus on creating a “new you” – or at least an improved version of the old you. Sometimes we do that through resolutions about dieting and exercise that, sadly, we don’t always keep. Sometimes we enter January vowing that in the next 12 months we will travel more, read more or spend more time with the family. As you look ahead to all the possibilities that a New Year brings, let me suggest that if you’ve been letting your personal brand languish, 2018 can be your time to shine! It can be the year you rise from obscurity to fame – or at least to recognition as a voice of authority and go-to expert in your field. You just need to be willing and determined to make it happen! You can bet that if you don’t, someone else – possibly a direct competitor – is going to step into the limelight that you neglected. They will be the ones polishing up their personal brands and, as a result, speaking with journalists, chatting with radio and TV show hosts, and linking to their media success stories on their websites. Several years ago when I wrote my book Celebritize Yourself, personal branding hadn’t become quite as widespread as it is today. Certainly, some people – Zig Ziglar, Suze Orman and Bob Greene, just to name a few – had become extraordinarily successful at it, but at that time there weren’t always as many ways for people to promote themselves as there are now. Most of the social media platforms... read more
What Makes A Great Team?

What Makes A Great Team?

Each Monday morning I meet with members of my team to brainstorm ideas for that week’s PR Insider. On occasion coming up with a topic is a challenge, but always it’s an interesting and fun time because each person involved brings a different perspective to the discussion as we toss around ideas that will help our readers. This week during just such a session it occurred to me that the camaraderie, talents and life experiences that make up a great team are worth writing about themselves. This came to mind because my company recently embarked on a team-building excursion that involved a Greek lunch, a boat ride to an island off the Gulf Coast of Florida, and the retrieval of one deceased dolphin. I know that last item may sound strange, but it was in the name of science and not originally on the agenda. The Greek restaurant and boat ride were carefully planned in the name of fun. But the whole day, deceased dolphin and all, helps illustrate the importance of a strong team, whether you hire one or build it yourself. Our trip that day to the wonderful Greek community of Tarpon Springs was made possible by a client who sent a generous check and asked me to create a party for the team as a thank you for the work we did on their behalf. I presented the challenge to my team to decide what the outing would be. There were plenty of suggestions from this creative and adventurous group whose diverse backgrounds and experiences provided an equally diverse list of ideas to choose from. After... read more
How We Ended Up In The New York Times – And You Can, Too

How We Ended Up In The New York Times – And You Can, Too

When our team returned to work this week after taking a brief break for Thanksgiving, we learned we had something to celebrate. No post-holiday blahs for us! Instead, it was high fives all around! The exciting news that greeted us was that Jay York, our senior social media and marketing strategist, had been quoted extensively in a New York Times article headlined “Brands Heed Social Media. They’re Advised Not to Forget Word of Mouth.” Every day we work to get our clients just this sort of placement, but on occasion, when the moment is right, we practice what we preach and do the same for ourselves. And, as it turns out, there are lessons for you in how this opportunity came about for Jay and EMSI. To begin with, the New York Times reporter did not seek out Jay. Instead, she wanted to talk with one of our clients, who happened to have the expertise her article needed. This particular client had served as a source for the reporter before and she obviously liked working with him, so it didn’t surprise us when she asked to interview him once again. But we encountered one not-so-slight problem. When the client heard about the topic, he felt he didn’t have any creative thoughts to offer the reporter. So he declined the interview. For one brief terrifying moment, it looked like we would need to tell the New York Times reporter we had nothing for her! Then one of our print campaign managers, Miguel Casellas-Gil, had a marvelous idea! Since the topic related to social media and marketing, he asked Jay if... read more
How Social Media Defines Your Marketing Audience With Precision

How Social Media Defines Your Marketing Audience With Precision

When it comes to marketing your brand, the most critical factor is to know who your target audience is and then find the best way to reach out to them. As you look to 2018, and make plans to promote your product or services in the coming year, one thing to consider is just how effective social media can be in helping you accomplish that. In fact, it’s the most effective means available when it comes to drilling down to a specific audience that would be the perfect match for what you have to offer. That’s not to say that other media venues are ineffective. TV, radio and print each have their advantages and all are effective in their own ways. But when it comes to sorting through a vast audience to find the small sliver who are the best match for your products or services, social media is in a category all its own. Social platforms provide tools that allow you to target precise audience segments so you know you are reaching the exact potential customers or clients you want to reach. For example, let’s say you’re a financial professional and you’ve decided women are a new target audience you want to reach out to. Where do you start? Well, we know that half the U.S. population is female, but that doesn’t exactly narrow things down for you very much, does it? After all, a 20-year-old college student on the other side of the country isn’t likely what the typical financial advisor has in mind as a potential client. Enter social media. Those social media tools can help... read more
Make Sure The Year Ends With A Marketing Bang – Not A Whimper

Make Sure The Year Ends With A Marketing Bang – Not A Whimper

With so many years of experience behind us – not to mention the availability of calendars – you would think we would be better prepared for what’s about to come. Yet, year after year, many of us act astonished and caught unaware by this annual, easily predictable time of year that still somehow manages to sneak up on us. Once again, it’s the last quarter! Suddenly, the holidays are here! And before we know it, 2018 will have arrived and just like in the past we’ll be wondering where those final months of the year went and whether we made the most of them when we had the chance. And too often we will shake our heads as we realize that we could have accomplished so much more with the right planning. If only… So before 2017 really starts winding down – and disappears for good – let me suggest a few things you can do with your year-end PR efforts that will help you feel that you did indeed make the most of the moment: First, put your marketing hat on. Think about the media outlets you can get your message in front of right now and in the coming weeks. Don’t limit yourself! Think print, both traditional and online. Think radio and TV. Think social media. Also, brainstorm on your own or with others to come up with ways you might be able to tie your message to the holidays, to year-end planning or to resolutions for the New Year. A financial professional, for example, could pitch something like: “4 Resolutions That Will Help You Become Financially... read more
Big Interview? Engage The Host And The Audience Will Take Care Of Itself

Big Interview? Engage The Host And The Audience Will Take Care Of Itself

It’s finally happened! You’ve been working on your publicity efforts, trying to land a radio or TV interview, and now the show is scheduled. Since this is what you wanted, why are you starting to nervously ask yourself: What have I done? Jitters! Stage fright! Call it what you will, it’s perfectly normal to get a case of the nerves when you start thinking about your interview and realize that thousands – perhaps millions – of people will be hanging on your every word! How will little old you ever be able to engage such a large audience?! I understand exactly where you’re coming from. When I came out with my book Celebritize Yourself several years ago, my staff booked a lot of interviews for me and I had these same concerns. In my case, I was fortunate to get a little media coaching from a good friend, Lee Habeeb, a talk radio producer who was co-creator of The Laura Ingraham Show and media coach to Salem Radio Network’s national talk radio hosts (e.g. Hugh Hewitt, Mike Gallagher, Dennis Prager and Michael Medved.) As I look back on the time I spent with him and all the wonderful advice he provided, I’ve realized that one particular piece of Lee’s wisdom proved especially helpful. “Don’t worry about engaging the audience” he said. “That’s the host’s job! The audience regularly tunes in to the show, so the host already has engaged them. They aren’t your concern.” My job, Lee continued, was to engage one person and one person only – the host! It was a revelation! Since then, when providing media... read more
Why People Share On Social Media And Why That Matters To Brands

Why People Share On Social Media And Why That Matters To Brands

Every day people start their day by checking in on social media – and before too long the sharing of memes, posts, videos and cat pictures starts in earnest on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other platforms. What’s driving all that sharing? Lots of things, probably, but to boil it down to its essence, people share on social media because they come across something that appeals to them and they think it will appeal to like-minded people. They share because they like the feedback they get from sharing. And they share just because it’s fun. So what does that mean to you and why does it matter to your brand? After all, you’re looking for results! It all boils down to understanding how and why social media users behave the way they do. This information is valuable because if you understand the needs of your social media audience it will help you make decisions that influence those users to act in a way that benefits you or your brand. Let me share (there’s that word!) just a few key points about sharing on social media: They’re building their personal brand. Each time a user shares something on social media they are taking one more step in strengthening their personal brand. Yes, you may be surprised to hear that individuals have their own brands, but it’s true. Think about it, you may have some friends that focus on sharing pictures and updates about their fishing and boating hobby while others may focus on sharing humorous headlines, jokes, etc. While the former is presenting themselves as a fishing enthusiast, the latter is... read more
Left For Dead, Radio Adapts To A Digital World

Left For Dead, Radio Adapts To A Digital World

First it was TV that was going to kill off radio, sending it to an early and untimely death. But radio hung in and even thrived. Then it was the internet that was going to finish the job once and for all! But radio shrugged (at least metaphorically), adapted and even capitalized on its supposed foe, the internet, to get its message to the masses. And that’s why to this day I can still proclaim that talk radio continues to be a wonderful venue for giving a boost both to your brand and to your credibility as an expert in your field. In fact, because of the internet, radio is better than ever for that purpose. We’re well past the days when listeners had to schedule their time around their favorite radio talk show. Now in many if not most cases those shows are archived on the station’s website, so people can listen to the show at their leisure, sitting down to enjoy it hours, days or even months after it originally aired. Additionally, one way hosts build their audiences these days is through social media, using Twitter, Facebook and other online sites to drive people to their shows. That’s good for you as well as for them if you plan to make talk radio part of your publicity efforts. And if you aren’t making use of talk radio, here are a few reasons why you should: You can leverage those interviews for an extra PR boost. It’s great if people take the time to tune in to your interview, but you can make excellent use of the interview... read more
Creativity And Persistence Can Separate You From The Pack In The Publicity Game

Creativity And Persistence Can Separate You From The Pack In The Publicity Game

Grabbing the media’s attention isn’t always easy. Each day, reporters, editors, TV producers and radio show hosts scroll through a never-ending barrage of email messages, many of which they no doubt delete without even bothering to read. Let’s face it, they couldn’t write about or report on all those topics even if they wanted to! Time just doesn’t allow it. With competition for the media’s attention so fierce, how do you separate yourself from the pack and land an interview that will help build your credibility as a go-to expert in your field? I’d love to be able to reveal to you a super-secret strategy that will work every time, all the time! Sadly, that’s not the case. Sometimes you just have to get inventive, allowing those creative juices to flow as you brainstorm alone or with others about pitches that might resonate with a show host or article angles that will intrigue an editor. That’s what we do each day at EMSI. Sometimes those pitches and angles come easily – and we’re excited as we put them into action! Sometimes they don’t percolate so quickly – and in those cases we are even more excited when the right approach finally comes to us! There’s nothing like that PR eureka moment! But while no strategy is absolutely foolproof, there are some approaches you can take that definitely will increase your odds of success. They include: Follow the news. This is something we do every day on behalf of our clients. You increase your chances of getting the media’s attention if your pitch aligns with something people in the news... read more

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