The Digital Vibes


A free DIY approach to social media
April 8, 2009, 8:23 pm
Filed under: Online presence, Social Media | Tags: , , , ,
A nice post from iMediaConnection on getting the word out there on social media, without paying for viral power.
Published: March 25 2009
You don’t need a huge budget or a big agency to start harnessing the power of Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. These five methods will increase your audience — all by yourself.
Developing content in today’s user-generated media world is easy; marketing that content successfully is not. Numerous bloggers and site owners regularly ask me to explain how they can drive traffic to their sites in order to support their monetization goals. After all, quality content (or a unique product) leads to traffic, traffic leads to branding, and the combination of branding and reach leads to monetization. I respond to these entrepreneurs by telling them that their priority should be to understand and utilize social media strategies and tools, all of which can be easily accessed and are free except for the investment of their time.

Below is a “cheat sheet” of the five most impactful and immediate do-it-yourself actions you can take to increase your site’s traffic.

Access and empower your target audience within social communities
Social media is not as intimidating or complicated as it sounds. Simply start out by setting up your complete profile within various online and mobile communities, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Flickr, Tumblr, Twitter, Seesmic, YouTube, Meetup, Naymz, etc. Don’t worry — registering is free and easy. Then look for your friends and existing readers or users (more on this below) by searching for certain keyword topics, groups, affinities, etc., or by looking at the connections one or two degrees of separation removed from you.

Also, browse around for like-minded influencers — the people frequently starting conversations, writing product reviews, contributing their own posts, uploading videos, answering questions, or moderating the community.

Now, befriend these influencers and people you admire, and even consider inviting them as contributors or columnists on your site. For example, one female blogger I invited to be an early contributor to DivineCaroline was so honored that she added “writing at DivineCaroline.com” under her name in her standard email signature.

Keep in mind that using social media for marketing purposes must go beyond simply “collecting” a large amount of friends or connections. You need to connect with community members in a genuine way, by giving them feedback about their profile, sharing some content they might appreciate, or nominating them for an award. If you don’t have content to promote, you could consider launching a new product or making an exclusive offer to members of a specific community.

A friend of mine whose videos are frequently featured on YouTube told me, “I find exposure on YouTube to be an invaluable, free marketing tool that gives me credibility among cool, online influencers. I’m able to see who has voluntarily voted on the quality of my videos and then reach out to them.”

Twitter is a free, simple and effective tool for increasing your exposure, establishing a voice, and keeping tabs on conversation about your site, content, or brand. It’s not a fad you can afford to write off; last month, Twitter’s user base grew more than 33 percent to more than 8 million users in the U.S. The majority of publishers and businesses using Twitter have said the benefits of tweeting include keeping their brand in the public eye, humanizing them to readers on a daily basis, and building a stronger sense of community.

Even a traditional brand like BusinessWeek is sharing, connecting, and learning via this micro-blogging community. John Byrne, the magazine’s editor-in-chief, solicits questions from his audience of 10,000 followers, points out newsworthy articles around the web, and highlights stories from the BusinessWeek website without coming across as too pushy.

Through Twitter Tracker, you can see a real-time listing of some of the most popular media, entertainment, and consumer product feeds. Twitter is only one community out of a handful you need to participate in, so I won’t go into detail within this article. Rather, read these 10 tools for getting started using Twitter.

Next page >>

Leverage your existing user base
Encouraging your current readers or users to promote your site is the cheapest and most efficient way to acquire new visitors. First, take the time and effort to understand who your most loyal users are. Determine this by researching who regularly comments on your content, links to your site, or forwards your enewsletter most often.

Second, communicate with these users by doing things such as showing gratitude for their participation, asking their opinion, and replying to their comments or posts. I know a blogger that every week writes one post profiling a particular reader whose comments she appreciates. Not only does this reader become more involved and loyal, he is also likely to tell his friends to check out the post written about him. Now you can see how connecting personally with these users — and boosting their egos — will encourage them to talk about your interaction or your content with their friends and peers.

Third, show respect for their interests by asking for feedback about your site: What do they like most? In which section do they spend the majority of their time? What do they want to see more of? Implementing even small, creative tweaks to your site or content can result in a traffic upswing for the long-term.

Lastly, after you’ve communicated with and empowered your most active user base, find out where they came from and where they visit next on the web. This is called upstream traffic (the sites they visited before they came to yours) and downstream traffic (the sites they visit after yours). Companies like comScore and HitWise provide this information. Quantcast, a free service, also shows sites that your audience is likely to visit. As an example, Fast Company readers are likely to also visit USNews.com and DIYForums.net. Reviewing the sites listed and any emerging patterns can help you learn more about your audience’s interests, suggest promising new content areas, and point out possible partners.

Syndicate and execute link exchanges with relevant publishers
In today’s Web 2.0 era and going forward, the sad reality is that very few large media companies will pay to license your content, no matter how awesome you think it is. Does this mean that you should hoard your content? No. Just the opposite: Syndicating content or widgets for free to other publishers and distributors is a great way to establish authority for your brand, and increase exposure and traffic for your site.

I caution you, however. From my years in business development, the most important thing I’ve learned about collaborating is that every partnership must be a win-win for both parties involved. So when you share your content, you need to confirm a fair barter exchange: You’ll give content only if they’ll include your byline, logo, and a hyperlink back to your site. To view examples, check out how Huffington Post displays partial articles from DivineCaroline and how MSN features technology articles from PC World.

Another opportunity with partners who have an audience you crave is to agree to do a link exchange with them. This approach — in which you write about and link to a piece of content on their site and they do the same for you — requires little effort and has the potential to drive decent traffic, depending on the size of the partner’s audience and the relevancy of your content to what that audience is reading. This approach shouldn’t take up a large percentage of your time, so be sure not to waste too many hours contacting publishers with small audiences or giving more links than you get back in return. Two easy ways to execute a link exchange include creating a “best of” categorized list, like ReadyMade does, or creating a weekly round-up article with a particular theme, such as Lemondrop’s weekly Link Love.

Get exposure on social news sites
Social news publications and aggregators enable people to discover and share content from anywhere on the web. These sites, such as Digg, StumbleUpon, Fark, Yahoo! Buzz, and delicious, promote the best content as submitted and voted on by the community. When you contribute an article, image, or video, your submission will immediately be added into the mix, where other members can find it, access your site to read it, and vote for it. Once something has earned a critical mass of votes, it becomes worthy of appearing on the site’s homepage, which is the traffic driver you’re aiming for. Since you’ll have to compete with some of the nation’s leading content providers, you need to be strategic about which pieces of content you select to submit (they need to be unique and memorable) and which are most appropriate for a particular site’s audience (for example, Digg and Fark cater to more males than females).

There are several simple ways to package and market your content for success on these sites: write strong, bold story titles; use subheads within a story; organize bites of information into lists (i.e. “Top 10 ways to avoid a layoff”); offer new details on a popular topic (i.e. wacky info that makes you a hit at a dinner party); vote for great content, not just your own; and submit your stories regularly and frequently. Don’t forget to build a network on these sites — invite your friends, find related authors, and add them to your friends list so that you can collectively find news together.

Create tools for users to share your product or content
What good is your content if readers don’t know how to share or reference it? You need to add “take action” tools on all your article or video pages, such as print, subscribe to a feed, bookmark, share (email), etc. AddThis offers a free tool that enables users to easily share your content with social news sites. For example, when a reader wants to indicate he likes an article on NewScientist.com, he can scroll over the “share” button and select Digg.

Then he either registers or signs in as a Digg member, and can instantly vote for that article, thereby increasing the article popularity and promotional exposure.

Another free tool for exposing your digital content is a widget. You’ve probably heard the term, but you’re too embarrassed to ask what a widget is and does. Basically, it’s a compact, portable application that can be easily embedded into someone else’s site or blog. You can use this format to showcase your site’s headlines, features, images, or whatever you think will motivate a user to click through. I suggest asking a question, taking a poll, or somehow getting the user to enter information so that they feel more connected to your brand on a personal level. The Weather Channel’s widget does this well — users insert their zip code, and with one click of a button the local forecast appears. Products like Snap Shots and Widgetbox help you build, customize, distribute, and track your own widget.

Allison, who founded the Mrs. Fussypants blog, is a prime example of a content creator who used multiple social media tools and tactics to grow her audience. “I knew early on that I had to be proactive and that I needed something to offer my regular readers to spread the word. So I used Widgetbox, and also asked my readers to subscribe via RSS, favorite my site on Technorati, and write a blog post about me. One reader joked that soon I would ask them to name their next child after me. But all of these efforts have increased my traffic.”

In addition, Allison received so many requests from bloggers to be featured on her site that she decided to create an e-zine, called Blissfully Domestic, with each category written and managed by a specific woman.

Through friends, fans, partners, and free tools, you now have the education (and zero excuses) to greatly benefit from social media.

Rebecca Weeks Watson is director of business development for Real Girls Media.



Top 20 Ways to Share a Great Blog Post
April 6, 2009, 10:39 pm
Filed under: Blogs, Online presence | Tags: , ,
Great post on how to  generate online publicity for your blog post, from Mashable:

March 29th, 2009 | by Ben Parr

One of the best things about the web and social media is how much great information is written and produced every single day. If you’re a regular reader of blogs, you probably come across great articles that you just want everyone to know about. But what’s the best way to share these posts?

Luckily, there’s no shortage of ways to spread the word. Blogs, social networks, instant messenger, and mobile phones are some of the many ways to let others know about the best content on the web. Here are our 20 favorite ways to share a great blog post:


Sharing Via Social Media:


Mashable Twitter Image1. Using Twitter to Tweet and Share: Perhaps the fastest and most effective way to share a great blog post is through Twitter. Sharing or retweeting a link in Twitter can spread like wildfire. Use a URL shortener such as tinyurl or bit.ly to shorten links to fit within 140 characters.2. Posting to Facebook: Sharing a blog post on the world’s largest social network is as simple as going to the Facebook homepage and posting a link.

3. Digg it: Not only will you help bring that blog post one step closer to reaching the front page of the news site Digg (which will spread it even further), but all of your Digg friends will see it as well.

4. Post on MySpace Profile: Don’t forget about the world’s second largest social network when sharing your favorite articles. Post the link to your MySpace profile so your friends can enjoy it too.

5. Posting to LinkedIn: Some blog posts are worthy of being shared by your business network on LinkedIn . Post a link to the Network Updates area in the homepage.

6. Stumbling on StumbleUpon Stumble the post! StumbleUpon is a favorite network for discovering fun websites and useful information, so make sure that you give the post a thumbs up. The StumbleUpon Toolbar is the easiest way to Stumble.

7. Bookmarking to Delicious: Delicious is great for not only sharing posts, but for helping categorize blog posts for others to find. In addition, you can import your delicious bookmarks to Facebook, FriendFeed , and other social media websites.

8. Sharing on FriendFeed: The social media aggregator FriendFeed has a vibrant community who love to share videos, links, and pictures. Use the FriendFeed bookmarklet to quickly share a good blog post to FriendFeed.

9. Adding to Reddit: Reddit is another great social media site for sharing and voting on articles. It’s quick and easy to submit a link


Sharing Via Blogs:


10. Reblogging Great Posts: Blogging about a great article is one of the best ways to engage with the topics being discussed. Post a link, write some commentary, and share it with all of your readers. And don’t forget to share your own blog post as well!11. Sharing via Google Reader: Google Reader has a great feature for sharing blog posts. If you use Google Reader as your news reader of choice, all you have to do is click the “share” button at the bottom of blog posts to share it with all of your Google friends. You can also add notes and comment as well.

12. Posting on Tumblr or Posterous: If you want to share something via a blog, but don’t want to write a full blog post about it, there are great options for that as well, primarily Tumblr and Posterous . They are the quick and easy versions of full-fledged blogs, ideal for posting about pictures and blog posts.


Useful Tools for Sharing


Shareaholic Image13. TwitThat: TwitThat is one of the quickest and easiest tools for sharing blog posts. It will post to your Twitter quickly and easily. Just add the bookmarklet to your browser toolbar and click it whenever you come across a great post.14. Shareaholic Firefox Extension: There are a lot of great social networks where you can share a great post, but who wants to visit Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and LinkedIn to share a post? If you are a Firefox user, then install Shareaholic, an extension that goes on your toolbar. It provides quick links for sharing to all of the major social networks.

15. Ping.fm: If you’re a busy person, you might not have time to share on all of these social media websites. Isn’t there an easy way to share a blog post everywhere, all at once? Ping.fm links to all of your social networks and sends your updates to LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, to any other website you wish to link to it. You can even update from your instant messenger. It’s the perfect solution for those who like to share content all over the web.


Other Ways to Share:


ShareThis Image
16. Emailing: Email has always been a good way to share articles, especially with close friends and family. Although it may not reach as many people as Twitter, it will definitely reach anyone who isn’t as deep into social media as you are.
17. Texting: Did you know you that many blogs, including Mashable, support sharing an article via text message? Look out for the ShareThis button (three green dots connected by lines) under blog posts and select the “text” option. iPhones and mobile browsers have made it easy to read links sent by texts.

18. Changing IM Statuses: You probably have dozens, if not hundreds of IM contacts. Share great posts with all of them by changing your IM status to a great post you just read or wrote.

19. IMing a friend: If changing an IM status seems too impersonal, then just IM your friends the link. You can then have a fun chat about the blog post.

20. Talking to Friends: If you don’t have a computer handy, then don’t forget about the analog approach – call a friend or tell him or her over coffee about a great blog post you read. You can always send the link later if necessary.


How Do You Share Blog Posts?


This post only scratches the surface of sharing in social media. There are hundreds of tools and resources at your disposal. If you have another great way to share blog posts, please add it in the comments.



It’s the community not the tools
October 8, 2008, 12:37 am
Filed under: Online presence, Social Media | Tags: , , , ,

Like everyone who’s excited about the web2.0 space, I’m excited by all the tools and apps that really aid communication.

However, over the past week, I can’t help but start thinking about how it’s the community and where they are that matters. If your target audience are not social bookmarking fans of Digg and Stumbleupon, nor on Twitter or Plurk, nor any other niche social network that’s the flavour du jour, leveraging these tools in your PR campaign may make you appear a web2.0 native, but not yield the results you need.

How timely that Steve Rubel spoke about this, along with the future of PR and press releases, in an article on iMedia:

Published: October 07 2008
Steve Rubel on how blogs are changing the face of PR
Edelman’s director of insights explores the current evolution of the marketing and public relations landscape and explains why digital marketers need to focus on integration, not the latest technology fad.
If marketers want to succeed in this Web 2.0 world, they need to follow their audiences, not the technologies, says Steve Rubel. That might sound like surprising advice, coming from someone who spends at least two hours a day sifting through and digesting news regarding the latest in digital marketing platforms. But if there’s one thing Rubel has learned in tracking more than 500 RSS feeds related to digital marketing, it’s this: It’s not about the channel. It’s about how you use it.


Steve Rubel is senior vice president and director of insights for Edelman Digital.

Rubel should know. As a digital marketer with more than 15 years of experience, he’s seen a lot of platforms come and go. And as senior vice president and director of insights for Edelman Digital, it’s his job to identify emerging digital marketing platforms and gauge which ones are worth his clients’ investment.

In an industry where a shiny new application seems to be born every minute, it can be easy to get lost in the minutia — a tendency, Rubel notes, that can hurt a brand’s overall marketing campaign.

“A lot of marketers focus on individual sites and technologies,” he says. “They focus on Facebook strategies, they focus on Twitter strategies. And it’s very easy to get caught up in that and be very tactical and not think about how all these different genres integrate into a holistic system. I think that’s the biggest disappointment today. A lot of people are doing a lot of great work — very tactical work — but not thinking about how all this comes together and how it works together.”

The changing face of PR
As an executive at the world’s largest independent PR firm, Rubel has a keen sense of how public relations interacts with traditional and digital marketing platforms to form the basis of a company’s outward persona. He also recognizes that new digital platforms have greatly changed — and will continue to influence — the role of public relations in the overall marketing mix.

In July, when the SEC announced that it would recognize corporate blogs as public disclosure, some industry observers predicted the imminent death of the press release as we know it. But according to Rubel, rumors of the press release’s death have been greatly exaggerated.

“I see press releases having an important role in a few areas,” he says. “First of all, they communicate a message very quickly to the press, which is something that a blog or a feed really can’t do. And they reach a large number of people, particularly investors. Also, they can have a high impact on search engines, and I think that’s important to look at.”

That said, Rubel notes that companies’ dependence on press releases may decrease going forward. But, as with many traditional communication vehicles, the press release is more likely to respond to emerging digital platforms with adaptation rather than extinction.

Blogging into the future
Beyond providing a new channel through which to distribute company disclosures, blogs and bloggers are changing the face of public relations and marketing in many ways. And, daunting though it may be to consider that there are 25 million bloggers in the U.S. alone, Rubel says marketers and PR professionals need to embrace the blogger community as an opportunity rather than a challenge.

“There are a lot more places we can now go with smaller stories than we could before, more micro-niche audiences and more targeted outlets that focus on a unique segment of the market,” he says.

Rubel notes that in order to effectively communicate with the blogosphere, PR professionals and marketers need to bring their A games. “We can’t be spamming bloggers, and I think a lot of that is still continuing,” he says. “I’m disappointed in the industry in that regard, and I think we have a ways to go.”

Taking advantage of the huge opportunity presented by the blogging world requires PR professionals to think differently and leave behind some of their traditional tactics, Rubel says.

“PR people have typically been behind-the-scenes people, and I think that has to change,” he says. “The people who participate online the most and do that regularly are the ones who are most trusted. It’s easier for them to build relationships with the community.” Going forward, he notes, PR professionals must be prepared to build relationships with journalists and bloggers in a very transparent way.

If anyone can attest to the supreme importance of transparency within the blogosphere, it’s the folks at Edelman. Back in 2006, the firm received a virtual flogging when it was revealed that it had spearheaded a less-than-forthright campaign for client Wal-Mart. The campaign — in which Rubel played no personal role — involved a blog called “Wal-Marting Across America,” which was presented as the tale of a couple that was traveling the country in an RV, spending each night parked in a different Wal-Mart parking lot. But, as it turned out, Wal-Mart was underwriting the bloggers, one of whom was a Washington Post photographer.

Following an outpouring of outrage among bloggers, Edelman quickly stepped up to the plate and acknowledged its error in failing to be transparent about the identity of the two bloggers from the outset. And as Rubel reiterated in his immensely popular Micro Persuasion blog, the firm is committed to the transparency guidelines that it helped the Word of Mouth Marketing Association develop. Since the 2006 episode, Wal-Mart has continued to tap into the power of blogging — but with a much more upfront approach, evidenced in the company’s Check Out blog.

The need for transparency extends to all facets of marketing, particularly in Web 2.0, Rubel says. He notes that, on occasion, he’s had to talk his clients out of creating and posting their own articles to online resources such as Wikipedia. “Sometimes they really can’t quite understand why at first,” he says. “But I’ve found most times they’re often very receptive once I point to evidence that really underscores the ethics of the community. It’s pretty hard to dispute that.”

Digital best practices
Overall, Rubel says that online social networks present significant opportunities for marketers — if they know how to put this medium to work for their brands. Interactions and campaigns on sites such as Facebook and MySpace should develop naturally, he says.

“When a company can determine what it wants — and that overlaps with what a consumer wants — and you participate in a meaningful way in a social network to make that happen, I think that’s very credible,” he says.

As an example, he points to a program that Edelman Digital is running for Brita called Filter for Good. Tapping into consumers’ concerns over the impact that their bottled water habits are having on the environment, Edelman worked with the filtration giant to develop FilterForGood.com, a website where consumers who pledge to give up their bottled water can enter a contest and vie for prizes. “We activated that inside Facebook and helped execute an engagement program among people who are very green within Facebook and enthusiastic for these topics,” Rubel says. He notes that the campaign is a perfect example of a win-win situation in which a social networking tool helped to align a company’s interests with existing consumer interests.

In conclusion, Rubel reiterates his overall philosophy when it comes to interactive marketing. “Talk to consumers,” he says. “Study your audience and know how they interact with the web and what they like to do.” In the end, after all, it won’t be marketers who determine how media look and act it in the future — it will be the consumers.

“At this point, no medium has really replaced another, but I think that’s not an infinite loop,” Rubel says. “That has to stop at some point because people are so time pressed.” Rubel doesn’t claim to know which technologies and platforms will ultimately flourish and which will fade into oblivion, but he does know this: “Everything has to adapt in some way.”



Changing face of journalism and PR
October 6, 2008, 12:21 pm
Filed under: Online publishing, Social Media | Tags: , , ,

There’s no doubt that PR and journalism are linked, therefore any changes in the media landscape would affect the PR practice also.

Mequoda recently had a post on how to hire a kickass online editor… good insights into a different pool of editors that PR folks will soon have to deal with:

9 personality traits of the perfect Online Managing Editor that can write great content, sell your products, and create buzz about your brand (yes, it’s only one job)

Ten years ago, marketers were responsible for positioning products to sell, while editors were focused on producing great content. Online, the two are one in the same. You can’t be a profitable online business if no one finds your content or is enticed to buy your products. This is why we say that every editor must also be a marketer.

But there are plenty of other traits that make up an Online Managing Editor superstar. Besides the classic skills like their attention to detail, strong grammar, project management and creativity, there are less obvious personality traits you need to think about.

First let’s talk about the personalities that don’t fit the kick-ass Online Managing Editor description:

The “Print Guy/Girl”: A strong print portfolio doesn’t transfer online as easily as you might think. Print editors don’t need to think about SEO or selling anything. Your Online Managing Editor needs to write every article with both of these things in mind.

The Casual 9-5er: In online publishing, nothing is 9-5 anymore. Business hours don’t close, just like your website doesn’t close. When sudden news arrives that is detrimental to your audience, you need someone who not only is available, but also is willing to go the extra mile in order to post the content and satisfy your audience.

The Ego-Centric Journalist: A journalist over-confident in his work is less likely to adapt to your style guide. Just the same, when your style guide changes or your company starts moving forward in new directions, your Online Managing Editor should embrace it, not resent it.

The Disciplinarian: Someone who reminds you of what their job entails and what they “won’t do” is not a superstar of anything. Online publishing is an ever-changing platform. Someone who joins your team in the fall, will likely be doing something slightly different by the springtime or summer. Adaptability to change is key.

On the other hand, here are the most desirable traits you will find in a kick-ass Online Managing Editor :

The Casual Marketer: Some editors just have marketing blood in them, and some need to be trained. Either way, an Online Managing Editor with copywriting experience or at least a background in information marketing will understand the relevance between great content and revenue potential.

The Go-Getter: Your Online Managing Editor should enthusiastically reach out to other Online Managing Editors and be able to find mutually beneficial relationships. Exchanging promotions, links and other trade-offs will expand your reach and build your audience. Your Online Managing Editor should understand that audience development is part of their job.

The People Person: Your Online Managing Editor is the voice of your articles and blogs and will be the personality of your brand. A strong desire to engage, both online and off, with your readers is a benefit that your audience will see right away.

The Sales-Driven Writer: This might depend on your compensation package, but an Online Managing Editor that is driven by sales is more likely to “write to sell”. A Online Managing Editor that will not accept bonuses dependent on how much they sell is not confident in their ability to do it.

The Social Media Junkie: The more in touch with social media your Online Managing Editor is, the more likely that folks in that space will trust their content, thus the more likely they will be to link to it and recommend it to others.

Question here. Larry Weber described the future of the marketing communications department in his book Marketing to the Social Web, with roles defined by paid and unpaid media. If PR has traditionally influenced unpaid media as a credible messenger to the masses, how then should PR deal with the marketing and sales-driven online editors that publishers should now be hiring?



How PR is changing in the web2.0 world
August 13, 2008, 11:58 pm
Filed under: PR | Tags: , ,

Mashable carried a really great post on The Changing Role of Public Relations, referencing Steve Rubel’s post questioning if the thrill of the chase makes PR obsolete.

Rubel then asks the question: “..what then for PR?”

To which, writer Mark ‘Rizzn’ Hopkins has an answer based on his interactions with PR folks whom he deems as connectors to the businesses that employ them, as well as to the journalists.

The social media landscape has changed the dynamics of the publishing industry and its resulting impact on PR is only natural.

It has always been the case where the most successful PR practitioners are those who understand journalists’ needs and are able to connect journos to company information and industry trends, not those who are merely information gatekeepers.

In the hyperinteractive web 2.0 world, the evolution of PR will only see this skill being even more important in the profession’s future.



The Pepsi Challenge
July 24, 2008, 12:14 am
Filed under: Random | Tags: ,

The most brilliant global PR stunt ever, in my humble opinion. Presenting the Pepsi Challenge circa 1985. 



Solis on PR Secrets for Startups
June 3, 2008, 5:58 pm
Filed under: Online presence, Social Media | Tags: , ,

Techcrunch recently published a long post by Brian Solis, with 12 PR secrets for web startups.

You can follow the link above to read the full post, but I’ve taken extracted the 12 points below for quick reference:

  1. Understand You’re Not the Only Story in Town
  2. Pick the Right Person or Team to Lead PR
  3. Participation is Marketing
  4. Identify The Target Audience For Every Step Of Your Growth
  5. Don’t Launch on Mondays
  6. No Two Bloggers or Journalists are Created Equal
  7. Measure Success, Not Traffic
  8. Customize the News For Each Influencer to Make His Or Her Job Easier
  9. Get a Spokesperson
  10. Your Company Blog is More Powerful Than You May Think
  11. Blogger Relations Extends from the “A-List” to the Magic Middle
  12. Follow the Conversations and Join In

If you are a seasoned communications pro, I think the points serve as a good set of guidelines for your online marketing/ PR campaign. For those reading the post without marketing or PR experience, a DIY approach based on Solis’ recommendations may get you somewhere, but nowhere as far as good PR counsel can get you.

If there’s one thing Solis nailed spot on, it has to be this comment:

PR is now more than ever, something more capable and influential than simply writing and sending press releases to contacts generated by media databases. The media landscape has been completely blown open to not only include traditional media, but also bloggers and most importantly the very people we want to reach, our customers.