Brands that haven’t yet tried investing resources in digital-based influencer marketing face a host of unknowns, the first one being whether it’s suitable for a particular brand or nonprofit organization. Tony Balasandiran, account supervisor for Flowers Communications Group and a speaker at PR News’ June 23 Digital How-To Conference in Chicago, shares some of the advice he offers clients that have yet to make the leap to influencer marketing.
Stories by Steve Goldstein
Most of us wish we could apologize to people in our past for one thing or another. As time passes, though, an apology can become a form of stalking or a self-centered quest for redemption. That person whose feelings you hurt badly when you were 18? She doesn’t want to hear from you now. If only you could board a magical aircraft, zoom back in time and make things right. Speaking of aircraft, United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz sent an email on April 27 to customers apologizing for breaking the bonds of trust “when a passenger was forcibly removed” from one of its planes.
We recently surveyed attendees for the upcoming Social Shake-Up, asking them a couple of basic questions: which social media platform is their main focus in their work life, and what do they want to learn about most at the Shake-Up. Judging by the responses to the first question, the past—in the form of relatively ancient social media platforms—has a pretty firm grip on the professional communicators who responded to the survey.
At its Social Shake-Up Show in Atlanta May 22-24, PR News will celebrate its first annual Movers & Shakers Awards winners—communicators from b2b and b2c companies, nonprofit organizations and agencies who have produced measurable, positive results from their social media efforts on behalf of their organizations.
This is the sixth year we’re including the CSR Hall of Fame as part of PR News’ Spring Awards luncheon, which will be held March 22 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. At the luncheon we’ll also honor the winners and honorable mentions of PR News’ CSR Awards and Nonprofit PR Awards.
Brand communicators can’t afford to lock away their smartphones for three-hour chunks during workweeks, however you define a workweek. They’re paid to stay connected, monitor brand sentiment, protect and enhance their brand’s or their clients’ reputations. Yet the requirements of their jobs put them at risk of addiction to digital devices.
In our personal and working lives, relationships get frayed; friends, colleagues, competitors and customers get angry at us. We have to decide when to just let things blow over, and when to reach out to the angry party. The same holds true for organizations. The only thing that’s different for organizations, perhaps, is today’s heightened political climate and the speed of news cycles.
In times of stress, one’s judgment is impaired, no matter how cool the head might seem. This holds true for both individuals and organizations in crisis mode, and the temptation to act out on social media can be too great for some. The best defense is a smart, succinct crisis plan that can be shared throughout an organization.
Professional communicators give, give, give on behalf of their brand and their brand’s audience. Little time is left over for asking themselves the WIIFM question. How often do they focus their communications skills on building their own public profile and enhancing their own reputation? What are they doing to make influencers of themselves, and would they know where to start?
Ken Peterson minces no words about the dangers of having no formal crisis plan in today’s angry, heated climate: “Our reputations are more vulnerable today because we have less time to recover. There are examples of this every week now. In that context it’s more important than ever to be prepared and to have the best messengers for the organization—the PR professionals—working hand in hand with the entire executive leadership team so your organization can weather any crisis in any form. “