Merry Christmas and happy New Year. See you back here in January 2009 – I’m off for a mince pie and a couple of glasses of port.
Twitter cartoon I spotted on Social Signal which made me chuckle today.
You just have to love the Daily Mail, talk about getting into the Christmas spirit. Check out this headline and story……Robin redbreasts may be symbols of Christmas but are bloodthirsty killers. You couldn’t make it up!
The good part of being at home is being able to catch up with all my reading I haven’t had five minutes to do over the past couple of weeks. Who ever said that things start calming down for Christmas had obviously never worked at Berkeley in December. It has been bonkers with end of year reviews, new business pitches and strategy meetings for the forthcoming year.
Anyway, I read an interesting piece on Media Week which reported that, on average the UK’s leading newspaper websites saw an increase in page views by 23 per cent when compared with this time last year. Encouraging news for the nationals, especially when you keep on reading that the outlook for print publications is so grim.
According to a report by Deloitte, one in 10 newspapers will either cut print frequency, move entirely online or shut down in 2009. Harrowing reading for the industry, as there is always an obvious knock on affect to us PR professionals. Every time a paper dies the harder we have to work to get our clients noticed by its competitor titles.
Worrying times for the print titles but encouraging to hear about the continued growth of online news. Almost every client I know has a different perspective as to what they prefer. Some are old school and just love to see their name in lights in the hard copy while others have admitted to me that they can’t remember the last time they read their trade title but instead choose to take the highlights from the papers website.
Either way, the thirst for news is still there. I just hope that the news industry finds a way to feed it and still make money.
In the Berkeley PR office, we generally spend the first half an hour of the day reading through the papers in search of stories our clients can comment on or would be interested in. This month I have a Sunday paper so for the rest of the week will spend this time catching up on some on-line reading.
This morning I saw on Mashable and TechCrunch respectively that the prestigious award for American journalism, the Pulitzer Prize, is being extended to now also include online publications. Video is still however off limits.
Does this point to the increasingly important role that online news outlets are playing or does it reflect the increasing financial clout of online publications over print?
I am sure this isn’t the first time it has been used in this way but it was the first time it caught my attention. A Response Source came in this afternoon from Cliff Saran at Computer Weekly which unlike most, wasn’t asking for information, an interview or dare I say it, something free to take on holiday. Instead Cliff had already written his piece and was actually using Response Source to request comments on his blog.
A novel approach and I might click through in a couple of days to see if he had much success. In an age when most online publications are looking to drive people to their online stories I wonder if this approach will generate a greater communication with vendors and end users?
For those of you interested Cliff was asking what people thought was the greatest IT innovation – he chose the mouse.
I have just seen that the Independent has launched a blogging platform for the newpaper’s journalists and readers called Independent Minds, using the LiveJournal blogging platform. The blog has been set up to display content from Independent journalists, where they blog about their stories, highlight their pet projects and engage directly with Independent readers. It is also possible to have your own blog on Independent Minds and air your opinions among likeminded users.
This coincides with the re-launched website and the papers bid to step up their web pages and online features.
While sat at Amsterdam airport yesterday evening I was catching up on some reading and stopped by at Steve Earl’s blog and read his piece about how PR is still growing apparently Worth a read if you get a few minutes.
I left the following comment: I have to say my experience over the past few months is that most clients are more savvy than in the past. Most seem to understand that without marketing or PR you will disappear. In fact I nearly hugged one of my clients at the start of an EMEA meeting today when he said “a company that understands PR and its benefits is a company doing the right thing by its shareholders.
Most of us have had a client do or say something that makes us mad but let’s give them some love back guys. I am really heartened to hear clients talk like this and long may it continue. It also made me think of a conversation we had recently in the office where we discussed remembering to tell a client when they had done a good job. Everyone loves receiving that email from a client cc’ing their bosses and your boss saying what a great job/piece of coverage you achieved, so don’t forget to re-pay the favour once in a while.
As Steve said in his reply “hug a client, it is the new hug a hoodie”.
As more and more apps come out to help your prioritise, filter and get the most out of Twitter it is fast becoming invaluable to all in our office. One of my favourite is Twilert which has just launched and works on the same premises as Google alerts. You simply register and enter your keywords and the following day your email alerts start arriving showing who and what is being said about your specified keywords.
This is particularly interesting for those of us in the PR world who want to monitor the buzz about our clients. For example if you saw one of your clients products was being bad mouthed on Twitter, how cool would it be to be able respond to said person online and resolve it. I am sure they would be impressed that the client is tracking discussions and would be left with a good feeling towards the brand (if it is resolved).
The one thing about the app which did grab my attention was the proof that anything you put on the internet is there forever and can be read by anyone. I had set up an alert for one of my clients and saw an entry from my goodself come up after their yearly bash which I had posted a good few months back. Just because it is out of sight doesn’t mean it is gone forever. Something I would like is the ability to see the date / time beside the entry without having to actually click through, but you can’t have everything.
Aside from that, I have to say I like it and strongly recommend that if you are interested in knowing what is being discussed about you, your client or your competitors on Twitter start using Twilert.