Stories by Mark Renfree

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Mylan CEO Shows How to Prep for Dynamic Media Interviews

August 25th, 2016 by

After facing intense backlash for the price increase of EpiPens—a life-saving medication for individuals with severe allergies—Mylan CEO Heather Bresch outlined the company’s plan to make the drug more affordable during an Aug. 24 interview on CNBC. By shifting the conversation to the broader—and incredibly divisive—issue of health care in the U.S., Bresch offers her critics something else to direct their ire at. But what she really did in this interview was display a mastery of media training skills.

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Ryan Lochte and the 3 F’s of Crisis Communications

August 22nd, 2016 by

Ryan Lochte, the embattled U.S. Olympic swimmer who falsely claimed to be robbed at gunpoint with three other swimmers in Rio de Janeiro, began an apology tour on Aug. 20. Speaking with NBC’s Matt Lauer and Felipe Santana of Globo, one of Brazil’s largest television networks, Lochte accepted responsibility for his actions, at times appearing on the verge of tears with Lauer. But some in the PR world said his apology and overall crisis communications leave much to be desired.

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5 Essential SEO Metrics and 4 Tools to Track Them

August 16th, 2016 by

SEO can be one of the most powerful tools at a communicator’s disposal—if it’s used correctly. Having an optimized website will drive valuable free traffic that can be converted into leads, advocates, fans and customers. But SEO can work against a site too, making poorly optimized destinations all but disappear. One of the bedrocks of a competent SEO strategy is having the right metrics in place. But with the fluid nature of Google’s algorithm changes, metrics have to be consistently monitored. Before the work of monitoring and adjusting an SEO strategy can begin, a baseline needs to be established.

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6 Ways to Turn Employees Into Ambassadors When a Crisis Hits

August 11th, 2016 by

It’s no secret that a crisis can pop up at any time and put an organization in a precarious position. The crisis can present itself seemingly out of nowhere—like the diving and water polo pools at the Rio Olympics turning mysteriously green, or Delta Airlines’ power failure—and dangerously skew the perception of a brand. While it’s essential to focus on a transparent and progressive external response, communicating clearly and efficiently with employees can create powerful brand ambassadors in troubled times.

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It’s Delta’s Turn to Scramble From a High Tech Outage

August 8th, 2016 by

It’s been a tough day for Delta Airlines. But it’s been even more excruciating for the company’s customers. The company seems to be doing its best to keep passengers informed and is offering refunds and waivers for ticket exchanges, which are both good things. But as technology becomes more heavily integrated into the airline industry, these types of outages and glitches are becoming major problems for airline brands. Only a few weeks ago, on July 20, Southwest Airlines experienced a similar technology related problem that caused days of delays and cancellations.

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3 Ways SEO Has Changed and What It Means for Your Site

August 5th, 2016 by

Like almost everything in the digital space, SEO is in a constant state of flux. Driven by Google’s mandate to give web searchers the best possible experience, algorithms are continually tweaked to deliver on that promise. The only way for communicators to stay relevant in such a space is to stay informed and always use the latest tactics. To decode SEO in general and comprehend where it’s going, you have to understand where it’s been.

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Instagram ‘Stories’ Brings Snapchat’s Style to the Platform

August 2nd, 2016 by

If you or your brand has been wary of jumping on the Snapchat bandwagon, Instagram is rolling out its own take on social evanescence in the next few weeks that’s likely to be a much more brand friendly way to use disappearing content. Facebook’s photo-heavy app announced that it’s launching a new Snapchat-esque feature called “Stories.” The company hopes the move will encourage users to post more of their everyday moments to the platform, whereas only the best, most visually stunning parts of life made it onto Instagram in the past.

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6 Building Blocks for an Unbreakable SEO Strategy

July 29th, 2016 by

Securing that coveted top ranking in search results requires equal parts art and science. Search companies are constantly changing and updating their algorithms, and recently they’ve been favoring quality content over quantity of content and keyword stuffing. To rank well your content has to first be good, and then be optimized.

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[Infographic] How to Create Perfect Social Media Posts

July 28th, 2016 by

Navigating the various social media platforms can be a little like traveling the globe. Each network has its own individual customs, languages and culture. If you want to thrive in such strange and often disparate arenas, you’re going to have to approach each social space on its own terms. Just as every traveler needs a pocket dictionary to help fumble through choppy conversations in a foreign tongue, myclever Agency created an infographic that should serve as a helpful reference for communicators who navigate the wide world of posting on social media.

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Internal Comms Breakdown as Kmart Employees Believe Brand Will Go Bankrupt

July 25th, 2016 by

Kmart employees believe the company is approaching bankruptcy and closing all its locations, despite comments indicating the opposite from its parent, Sears Holdings, Business Insider reported on July 23. After speaking to employees and reviewing an online message board that workers use to communicate with each other, Business Insider found that the recent implementation of “path to profitability” plans left many store-level employees fearing the worst.