Tag Archives: digital

The New Era of Creative Storytelling (Part 2 of 2)

{Editor’s Note: This is the second of a two-part post focusing on what we’ve learned as social media marketers over the years and what our industry looks like moving forward}

Live journalAs you (hopefully) read in the first part of this post, social media marketing and user behavior have covered a LOT of ground in 15-ish years. First, being able to share written word on the Internet, then the ability to start your own personal web page with photos and music, on to easily being able to create and post content of all kinds online, interacting directly with brands and organizations, and eventually live streaming content that “disappears” after a few seconds. Creative storytelling has never been more complicated. Which brings us to today…

2018: The Modern Age

What is Happening?

Blog period3There’s a TON of noise. And individuals are (successfully) trying to find better ways to receive and organize the information they want. The social media algorithm pendulum has swung from content we wanted/selected, to what the platforms assume we want to see (the echo chamber effect), back toward the content we interact with most often (but definitely NOT chronological, because there’s no money in that). The interesting outcome of the “Hooli Effect” (mentioned in Part 1 of this post), is that individuals are using social platforms the way they want to use them, not necessarily how each platform would want you to use them.

Read more after the jump…

Getting to the Point in Public Relations

Getting to the Point in a PR Pitch

When he’s not peering into my purse and desk drawers to scout for contraband snacks and gum, Gil Rudawsky spends his days as one of GroundFloor Media’s fearless leaders. As a Vice President, he has more than two decades of communications and journalism experience. This translates into expert counsel for our staff and clients, particularly in the areas of issues management, crisis communications and public policy campaigns.

Prior to joining GroundFloor Media, Gil served as the deputy editor on the business and metro desks at the Rocky Mountain News. When asked to describe the number of pitches that crossed his desk during those years, he estimates 50,000. This volume of requests has helped him to finely craft pitches of his own.

As colleagues, we review one another’s client communications constantly. Gil is adept at revealing the heart of the matter and never mincing words – a quality I deeply appreciate and admire in a teammate. I sat down with him to talk about how digital and public relations professionals can get to the point.

Press releases then and now

CLARE: With ever-expanding digital media, has there been a shift away from lengthy press releases?
GIL: Going back 30 years, lengthy press releases were always looked down upon, and that’s the case today. I don’t think anybody should have ever sent them, even when we had newsrooms that were four times the size they are now. Because of the breakneck pace of news, journalists have always been too busy. Back then and today, they are only attuned to the top one or two paragraphs of a pitch. If you haven’t sold your story or angle in that spot, you haven’t done your job.

From journalism to public relations

CLARE: Given your background at the Rocky Mountain News, how does that experience as a journalist serve you in your day-to-day work as a communications leader?
GIL: I use the skills I gained in journalism on a daily basis in a variety of areas, mostly in messaging. I focus on writing concisely and getting to the point quickly and I encourage our clients to do the same. In terms of strategy, I’m always thinking about audiences and the best way to present the information. I love capturing a narrative through an engaging video, graphically or in a podcast. For better or worse, we don’t need journalists to tell our client stories anymore.

CLARE: Your personal writing is succinct and to the point. Do you have a method to harness that style when you write content for clients?
GIL: Succinct and to the point are good but context and good storytelling are more important. Color, flavor and storytelling can bring dry or mundane issues to life. Always ask “Why should the audience care about this?”

Supportive proof points and audiences

CLARE: Do you have specific questions you ask a client during the briefing process?
GIL: For messaging, we always want to focus on three key points that we want to get out to their audiences. At the same time, you should your identify the audiences, whether internal or external stakeholders, customers or regulators, etc. You want your three key points to be strong and include supporting proof points that make sense to each of those audiences. I always look at it as a pyramid —  simple messages and building to more in-depth proof points.

CLARE: What are some common mistakes companies make during the messaging phase of a release?
GIL: I think it’s forgetting your primary audience. The general public doesn’t care about your internal terms and branded words – these are meaningless. Companies forget how to be conversational and accessible.

Fewer specialized journalists

CLARE: You have written on our blog about the changing landscape of journalism (one, two, three). Do you want to share any learnings from 2018 so far?
GIL: The trend over the past 15 years continues. We have fewer specialized journalists. Journalists who used to cover a beat now have to cover a variety of topics. Everyone has to be a generalist and that makes our job more difficult. You used to talk to a reporter and they were just as knowledgeable about the topic as you were, if not more so. Because journalists are stretched thin, that’s a rarity now. Educating the media is becoming more important.

CLARE: What do you enjoy most about working in public relations?
GIL: My favorite work is the collaboration between our staff at GFM and CenterTable and the variety of our clients. Our strategies and thoughtfulness can make a real difference in how clients communicate, and therefore how they are perceived by the public. Personally, I feel like the work I do is valued by both clients and teammates and that’s easily the best part for me.

Laurel vs. Yanny: Brands React

An audio clip took the internet by storm this week, described by many as the second coming of the white and gold or black and blue dress phenomenon.

Some listeners hear the word “laurel” and others are hearing “yanny.” The audio hotly divided the GroundFloor Media and CenterTable offices as we declared our undying loyalties to #TeamLaurel or #TeamYanny. Yesterday, the New York Times even developed a tool to change the frequency of the audio clip so readers can hear both “yanny” and “laurel.”

We thoroughly enjoyed watching different brands and celebrities seize the viral moment to weigh in on the debate throughout the week. Read more after the jump…

CenterTable @ SXSW: 2018 Preview

SXSW 2018GroundFloor Media and CenterTable are once again heading down to Austin to attend the 2018 South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) conference. Beginning Friday, March 9 and continuing through Tuesday, March 13 Adrienne Schafer and I will be hitting up as many sessions, panels, brand activations, concerts, networking events and food trucks as we can possibly stomach, and reporting back here on the GFM/CenterTable blog and a variety of social platforms.

The conference has changed quite a bit since we started attending seven years ago. The days of interactive sessions following a strict marketing and social media theme are long gone, replaced with niche programming tracks like health & wellness, sports, food and fashion as well as technology-focused trends like virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence (we really are living in the future, aren’t we?). But the thread that weaves all these “interactive” subjects together still remains communication, interaction and the place where brands and individuals meet. Change was inevitable as SXSW has grown, but it’s still an experience that can’t be found anywhere else.

Read more after the jump…

The Digital Advertising Landscape Evolves

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Facebook, Twitter and Google each claim to be rolling out shiny new features to make your digital advertising efforts easier and more effective, while Vero makes a push to become everyone’s next favorite social platform for personal use.

Vero 

Fast Company: What is Vero? What you need to know about the rising social media platform

Rising subscription-based social platform Vero claims to offer users an ad-free experience with content flowing in chronological order. Find out if and how brands can get in on the Vero game.          Read more after the jump…

Expanding Team with Digital Marketing Expert

Clare Frey Joins GroundFloor Media & CenterTable teamWe are excited to announce that our GroundFloor Media (GFM) and CenterTable family continues to grow thanks to the recent addition of Clare Frey.

Frey joins the CenterTable team as director of digital strategy. Prior to joining CenterTable, Frey’s experience included working as a web content manager for the University of Colorado, communications manager for Techstars and marketing communications manager at Inspirato. Prior to that, she contracted with various publishing companies. She is an excellent writer and has a deep understanding of how thoughtful social media and digital content can connect people to brands, and have a positive impact for both.

Originally from Poncha Springs, CO, Frey earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Fort Lewis College in Durango. After getting to know a few GFM team members over the years and stumbling upon CenterTable’s website last year, she has been eager to join our team.Clare Frey Joins the CenterTable and GroundFloor Media team

In her spare time, Clare enjoys spending time with her husband and dachshund named Boris. She has a passion for animals and donates much of her time and money to animal welfare organizations and shelters. Colorado Horse Rescue is especially close to her heart. She is a self-proclaimed book-worm and is a huge fan of the mountains and getting outside. Clare’s favorite ice cream is pistachio and she can’t go a day without talking to her brother.

Her favorite quote is, “Ever since happiness heard your name, it has been running through the streets trying to find you.” – Hafiz of Persia

We are incredibly excited to welcome Clare to the GFM and CenterTable family. Her experience
across a variety of industries will be a great asset to our clients as we continue to create meaningful, creative and integrated marketing communications campaigns.

Twitter’s New Promote Mode a Good Option for Small Business

Twitter recently announced that they were moving forward with a new advertising service that it had been testing this summer.

Twitter Promote Mode, which is now available to everyone, is a self-serve advertising subscription that for $99 per month automatically amplifies users’ tweets and profile. The tweets that are turned into ads through the new program appear just like any other paid Tweet with the small “promoted” language at the bottom of the tweet.

What’s nice about the program has positives and negatives depending on the account and how much time is available to do a more formal growth strategy. With the new Promote Mode users don’t have to do anything different to have these tweets seen by a wider audience – they just continue to tweet out their same updates, links and media as usual.

However, they cannot choose which tweets to promote – they can only turn Twitter Promote on or off. In addition, the tweets can be only be targeted by selecting up to five interest or metro locations or regions in a selected country. That’s significantly more contained then Twitter’s standard advertising platform.

For small businesses, individual influencers and brand new accounts, Twitter’s new Promote Mode is a great option to build visibility and followers more quickly.

Facebook’s New Campaign Budget Optimization Tool Is a Big Win

Facebook Budget OptimizationLast week Facebook announced via a blog post that they were soon going to be rolling out campaign budget optimization, which will allow for distributed budget across ad sets, often resulting in the best results for their campaigns.

By distributing more of a budget to the highest performing ad sets, advertisers will be able to maximize the total value of their campaign. This optimization will work in real time to determine the most effective use of ad spend to help lower cost per objective and improve results. It will also eliminate the need to spend time manually shifting budgets.

Read more after the jump…

Twitter Launches New Video Ad Format

Twitter Video Ad CardTwitter, despite being in the news seemingly every day, is still struggling to see improvements on the business side of the platform. Yesterday, the company unveiled a new ad format they’re calling the Video Website Card, a “creative format that combines the power of video with the ability to drive users back to a site to learn more or take action in the moment.”

Read more after the jump…

360 Video: To Gimmick Or Not to Gimmick

360 Video: To Gimmick Or Not to Gimmick | CenterTable & GroundFloor MediaTechnology is a fickle beast that can really creep up on you. One minute you’re blissfully content that two-day deliveries exist, and next thing you know, there’s shoes that order pizza and hoverboards that don’t actually hover and function as boneless scooters (turns out keeping wheels on things is still one of the best ways to keep your face from eating concrete).

The advent of 360 cameras was one of those things that crept up on me. From 16 GoPro camera rigs to smartphone clip ons, companies are constantly innovating the way consumers are telling their stories. However, like the proverbial cynical caveman that I occasionally am, the discovery of fire has left me wondering about the best ways to use it.
Read more after the jump…