Tag Archives: marketing strategy

“Breadcrumbs: Using Curiosity to Strategically Reach Audiences”

Last week, Robert Scoble declared Tech PR useless.  My response, a light-hearted post to shake off the negative energy, called for change within the PR industry.  Many of you emailed me asking about the future of PR and marketing, so today I wanted to share those thoughts.

Changing Landscape

The founders of our industry, in my opinion, did not intend us to be keepers of the keys and intermediaries, but actual creators and facilitators.  The original press release was not an announcement, but rather a creation of compelling content that editors wanted to print.  They looked for stories to tell and then pitched these to reporters.  And it worked, as long as the mainstream media was in control of the information.

Things have changed.  Today, the Mainstream Media is struggling and the walls are crumbling.  The rise of the Internet has moved content consumption online.  Also, thanks to social media, everyone has the ability to create content themselves.  Translation: The Internet is a REALLY REALLY noisy space.

Information Overload

Technologies like search and RSS feeds make information easily accessible–but they never seem to find *exactly* what you want.  Also, social networks and bookmarking sites have added the human element to finding content, but even that isn’t always enough.  With traditional media, reporters distilled the real world into articles.  Likewise, bloggers take information on the Internet and present what’s good.

With decentralized information filtering, how do we make a significant impact to reach our audience, whether they are bloggers, reporters or consumers?

Curiouser and Curiouser

If I understand Robert and the other Tech bloggers, they are finding information through community and curiosity. They listen to what others in their online peer network (whether Facebook, Friendfeeed, Twitter, RSS Feeds, etc.) are saying/sharing.  They also track and discover products and services the same way consumers do: word of mouth and surfing/searching.

What does this mean for PR and marketing practitioners?

  • The goal is to leave breadcrumbs your audience follows to find you as if by magic
  • To do this, we have to think like our audiences
  • Instead of asking “What do we want our customers to think?”, we have to ask “What are our customers interested in? How can we reach them?” and “What can we teach them?”
  • We no longer create stories, we look for conversation
  • We execute strategy to reach audiences where they share ideas
  • We engage in industry wide discussions with our clients as the moderator

We Are The Music Makers, We Are the Dreamers of the Dream

Instead of just producing viral videos, widgets, blog posts and (gasp) press releases, let’s create content people will want to consume.  Let’s build rabbit holes of discussion that our curious audiences can crawl into.

The ultimate goal: Be known for facilitating stimulating conversation around topics related to our clients/services by creating content our audiences will be interested in.

How do you see the future of PR? How do you inspire curiosity and conversation to energize communities and build awareness?

[This post inspired by a conversation with Tim Dyson, CEO of Next15 (the holding company that owns my firm, Text100) and numerous conversations with Todd Defren and Brian Solis]

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[The above photo, “Down the Rabbit Hole” by valkyrieh116 on Flickr, used under Creative Commons]

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Filed under Future of Media, It's A Conversation, New Media, Public Relations 2.0, Social Media

“3Q’s in 3Min: Geoff Livingston, The Buzz Bin”

It’s May Day, and people all around the world are marching towards better rights for workers. That’s right, people everywhere are chanting for more time on Facebook and the ability to watch “3Q’s in 3Min” at their desks.

Every Thursday, socialTNT channels the spirit of citizen journalism by putting bloggers, reporters, PR pro’s or anyone with something to say about social media in front of the camera for a short, three minute interview. The videos are meant to encourage dialog between PR/communications practitioners, journalists and marketers on the future of media.

Last week while at Web 2.0, we caught up with Geoff Livingston from the Buzz Bin. From media relations to branding and online marketing, Geoff’s fifteen-year career has covered the full gamut of communications. Geoff’s blog is a must-read for anyone pursuing new media marketing and PR, and his book, “Now is Gone” should be required reading for marketing executives. In today’s “3Q’s in 3Min,” Geoff breaks out his crystal ball to look into the future of marketing and PR, and gives some practical advice on strategy.

In the age of new media, the same principles for marketing and PR strategies remain, it’s just the tools that have changed. Instead of trying to force the strategy to fit the tools (blog, twitter, video, etc), Geoff reminds us that it’s important to choose the tools that best work with the strategy we implement.

One of the first steps to developing any strategy is knowing your audience. With social media we have more chances to form conversations and relationships with our audience. Geoff stresses that we have to meet them on their turf, using the tools and platforms they use. It’s part of Geoff’s theory of learning to “think liquid”–move with the community without getting hung up on one particular tool.

In the video below (probably sTNT’s most raw video to date), Geoff postulates the future of communications and the steady march towards humanization of marketing. Oh, and he’s tired of talking about blogs.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

So how do you perceive the future of PR and marketing? Is it more humanized? Let us know in the comments!

No time to watch the video at work? Get “3Q’s in 3Min” free from iTunes and watch it on the go!

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[The above photo, “You Da Man” by CC Chapman used under Creative Commons]

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Filed under 3sdays 3qs In 3 Min, Blogging, Future of Media, It's A Conversation, Marketing, New Media, Public Relations 2.0, Social Media, Video Interview