Monday, October 20, 2008

Social Networking - Use it or lose it

I have to admit, I am one of the many that can not go a day without checking my Facebook.  Right after I check my e-mail, my cursor goes up and types  It is a dirty habit that I can not stop.  I will say "I am a Facebook abuser!"  

Now that I got that off my chest, social networks are popping up all over the place.  Not only Facebook and MySpace, but more specific social networking sites such as PeopleAggregator or Ning in which you can build a community with others with the same interest.  These can be great tools for the PR practitioner to use.

Everyone knows about Facebook and MySpace, but the article received in class by eMarketer explains that one cite, Ning, has nearly 500,000 social networks with 80,000 new ones popping up each month.  This could be a great tool for PR practitioners to use to go directly to their public because your customers are already filtered for you.

Even though great networking cites are now abundant PR practitioners must use them to their advantage.  One thing they must do is build relationship with their public by directly communicating to them.  They must respond, respond and respond.  If someone tries to communicate directly to your organization through a social media you need to respond to their question to make sure you build that community with them.  Yes, this will take time, but in the long run building a relationship with your customer through a social media is too beneficial to pass up.

Monday, October 13, 2008

RSS - Important?

In class this past week we learned more about RSS (Really Simple Syndication) and why it is important to PR practitioners.  RSS is basically a tool for people to get news or information sent to them.  Someone can set up a webpage through Google and click on the type of news they want to read more about.  Simply by clicking on a RSS tab the news of that company or organization gets sent directly to their website.  

This is very important to PR practitioners because they can get their information straight to their public and not worry about going through the media.  When PR practitioners send press releases to the media they hope to get their information out to their public through a story the media writes about them.  However, if the media does not think their story is worth writing about or sharing, they can simply set it aside and write about something else.  Through RSS the media does not have a say on whether your information gets sent to your customers because it gets sent directly to them.

This is a great tool for PR practitioners because of its simplicity.  If the customers wants to know more about you all they have to do is click on the RSS icon and information could get sent to them daily.  PR practitioners need to talk their company into using RSS.  It is a good way to feed your information directly into the people who want to know more about you.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

10 Reasons Your Company Shouldn't Blog

After reading B.l. Ochman's article titled, 10 Reasons Your Company Shouldn't Blog, I realized that I do not agree with her. I agree with her points, but disagree more of the title of the article. I agree that most companies blogs are boring and should not be a blog promoting your business. However, the article's titled should be 10 Things to Think About When Your Company Blogs.

I believe that if a CEO wants to blog about their company, then do it and hopefully they do it well. If the blog they create happens to be boring and does not create the following they wish then that is alright. I think it is alright because if you have 20 followers then that is 20 more people that are getting to know your company and hopefully you. Even though I think this is alright I think companies need to do different things in order to create the following they believe the blog deserves.

I believe that a blog needs to create "buzz" and having a blog that people consider boring will not create that. A CEO needs to be creative and inventive when writing a blog. Do something different. A CEO could easily write about something that has nothing to do with their company and I think that is great. Even though you are not promoting your business or product, the people that read the blog will know that you are a CEO of a company and will be more likely to research your company if they like you. By writing something completely "off topic" you will be creating more "buzz" and in turn you will actually be promoting your company.

I think Ochman's article is great. I do not think she should push people away from blogging. As the class has learned blogging can be a very important part of public relations. I think her article should invite companies to blog, but to caution them on how they blog.