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How to Move From Multichannel to Omnichannel Marketing

April 5th, 2017 by

A multichannel structure can be likened to the swim lanes in a pool: We line up our channels, the gun bangs and they each swim off in their own lanes, doing their own thing. The problem is, none of the channels are collaborating because they’re so focused on beating each other. And that creates a “Hunger Games” situation. But if multichannel means staying in a swim lane, then omnichannel is basically one big pool party.

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8 Tips for Working With Twitter Ambassadors

April 5th, 2017 by

When brands communicate on social media, there’s a built-in trust and understanding gap between professional communicators and a skeptical public. Finding a way to bridge that gap is crucial. Nation Hahn, digital director at Blueprint for Athletes and chief growth officer at EdNC.org, has found that for the right brand and the right campaign, a great way to make the connection is by working with third-party ambassadors to intertwine the brand’s story with the stories of real people.

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How to Communicate in Today’s Charged Atmosphere

April 4th, 2017 by

Few companies are trying to make a Starbucks-like statement in today’s highly politicized communication environment. Many brands want to respect the diverse opinions of their employees and customers and avoid becoming a target of unanticipated backlash. Here are a few ways communicators can help brands navigate today’s highly charged environment. Fortunately, most of them are basic tenets of PR and communications. Brushing up on the basics can be especially useful in today’s climate.

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As ‘PR’ Fades From Job Titles, Communicators Ask: Does PR Need Better PR?

April 3rd, 2017 by

Something we’ve observed at PR News in recent years: We don’t see “PR” in job titles quite as often as we used to. One reason may be that so few communicators today are restricted to traditional PR functions like media relations and crisis management. In 2017 they are tasked with so much more, from content creation and social media management to email marketing and brand development.

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3 Ways the Children’s Defense Fund Drives Online Engagement

April 3rd, 2017 by

Before she measures the success of any campaign, January Williams begins with the question, “What am I asking the audience to do?” Williams, the director of online communications and outreach for the nonprofit Children’s Defense Fund (CDF), doesn’t try to be all things on all platforms. While some initiatives, like increasing the CDF’s number of followers, are easy to measure, most of what the organization does—when issuing legislative calls to action or fundraising, for example—is all about engagement. Here are three ways she uses analytics to drive action.

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Navy, Marines Take 2 Paths on Crisis

April 3rd, 2017 by

There were many examples last month of organizations screwing up and resulting in crises badly handled. We could have piled on PwC for the Oscars, but given that Hollywood obsessed about it for weeks, it was hard to find much more to say. And of course, we would have loved to weigh in on the great leggings-on-United kerfuffle clinging to Twitter as, well, leggings do. But frankly, in these times, all that seemed trivial compared to a couple of serious crises plaguing America’s military.

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4 Pages From a Phoenix Suburb’s Crisis Plan

April 3rd, 2017 by

When a massive, five-alarm fire broke out on a Saturday evening in busy Gilbert, Arizona, a Phoenix suburb home to nearly 250,000 residents, the Gilbert Fire and Rescue Department partnered with Gilbert’s Digital Communications Department to take a teamwork and technology approach to communication and community outreach. Here’s how they did it.

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How Coca-Cola’s Quest to Measure Engagement Led to a New Metric

March 31st, 2017 by

Most of us are familiar with the core KPIs of Google Analytics such as users, sessions, page views, bounce rate, average time on page, search and CTR. These metrics are important to The Coca-Cola Company too. But do they provide the holistic view the company needs? The answer is, no, because they alone do not capture engagement. So, the company created its own KPI.

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A Disconnect? Journalists and Influencers Say Audiences Are More Responsive to Cold, Hard Facts Than to Emotional Content

March 31st, 2017 by

Journalists and influencers believe that factual content ranks higher with online audiences than emotional content, according to a recent Cision report. Yet at a panel discussion in New York this week, communicators said that emotionally driven content has undeniable power to attract audiences and can even build trust in a brand.

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How Southwest Airlines Preps Timely Content, Far in Advance

March 30th, 2017 by

Timely content is king. The good news in today’s digital world is that companies are now in the content driver’s seat. But with so many channels and platforms at their disposal, many brands struggle to be relevant on all of them, all the time. That is leading some to make poor decisions about content type, timing and topic. Here are two examples of how Southwest Airlines strikes while the iron is hot.