Guide To Online Pr And Marketing

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A step-by-step guide on how digital PR firm, Abraham Harrison LLC, does its blogger outreach. While the deck is an overview, it is very detailed in terms of process and procedure.

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Guide To Online Pr And Marketing

  1. 1. A Beginner's Guide to Online PR and Marketing Chris Abraham President and COO cabraham@abrahamharrison.com @chrisabraham Daniel Krueger Director of Client Services dkrueger@abrahamharrison.com @d13vk www.abrahamharrison.com www.marketingconversation.com Before We Start: Don't Be Seduced by the Lure of Astroturfing “You may be attracted to covert online marketing: special ops, black ops, spycraft – “fifth column marketing,” if you will. Don’t be. The blowback that can result from using a false name, a false email (a Yahoo, Google, or Hotmail address created for the campaign and the false name), and a false bio, isn’t worth it. Even though your reputation online is more defined by your contributions to the conversations rather than who you are, the culture of the Internet doesn’t suffer being fooled, duped, or suckered.” If you are ever found out, you are screwed.
  2. 2. “Markets are Conversations” • “Through the Internet, the people in your markets are discovering and inventing new ways to converse. They're talking about your business. They're telling one another the truth, in very human voices.” • “These markets are conversations. Their members communicate in language that is natural, open, honest, direct, funny and often shocking. Whether explaining or complaining, joking or serious, the human voice is unmistakably genuine. It can't be faked.” • “But learning to speak in a human voice is not some trick, nor will corporations convince us they are human with lip service about "listening to customers." They will only sound human when they empower real human beings to speak on their behalf.” The Cluetrain Manifesto, 1999, by Chris Locke, Rick Levine, Doc Searls, David Weinberger http://www.cluetrain.com/book/
  3. 3. The Cluetrain Manifesto • Whether delivering information, opinions, perspectives, dissenting arguments or humorous asides, the human voice is typically open, natural, uncontrived. • Already, companies that speak in the language of the pitch, the dog-and-pony show, are no longer speaking to anyone. • Companies can now communicate with their markets directly. If they blow it, it could be their last chance. • Companies need to come down from their Ivory Towers and talk to the people with whom they hope to create relationships. • Most marketing programs are based on the fear that the market might see what's really going on inside the company. • To speak with a human voice, companies must share the concerns of their communities. • But first, they must belong to a community. • Companies that do not belong to a community of discourse will die. • Markets do not want to talk to flacks and hucksters. They want to participate in the conversations going on behind the corporate firewall. • The inflated self-important jargon you sling around—in the press, at your conferences—what's that got to do with us? • You're too busy "doing business" to answer our email? Oh gosh, sorry, gee, we'll come back later. Maybe.
  4. 4. What We Do at Abraham Harrison • Online Brand Promotion Practice – Blogger Outreach • Strategic messaging campaigns to A-list and B-Z-list bloggers • Targeted PR-style pitches tailored to social media expectations • Plain-talk messaging devoid of any sales or marketing-speak • Outsourcing all assets to Social Media News Releases • Bloggers produce earned media and so we must earn coverage • Poorly-handled campaigns result in Very Bad Things happening • Long-term blogger prospecting and cultivation (dossiers, etc) – Social Media Community Engagement • Engaging conversation where it takes place online • Facebook, Twitter, Digg, MySpace, YouTube, Forums, Listservs • Widgets, Apps, Fundraising, Profile Management, Groups and Pages creation & management, blogging, and microblogging
  5. 5. Goals, Expectations, and Audiences 1. What is the goal of the client (what is your goal?) 2. What is your desired outcome (how do you define success?) 3. What sort of gift are you willing to bring to the party – Online, generosity is always rewarded and stinginess is always punished – Gifts can be emotional, physical, ego-driven, exclusive, sentimental, informational, etc 1. Break this down into target audience(s) – Demographic Audience – Psychographic Audience – Geographic Audience – Profile and Celebrity of the Audience 1. Where does the audience “live?” – Blogs are often the best earned media – Twitter and other microblogging communities – Message boards, forums, newsgroups (Usenet) – Social networks (Facebook, MySpace, etc) – Mailing lists, Listservs 1. YouTube, Qik, Utterz, and other communities
  6. 6. Blogger Harvesting and Prospecting 1. Who do you need to reach? – Activists, animal lovers, educators, parents, moms, dads, politicos, the faithful, shoppers, travelers, sports fans, marketers, democrats, environmentalists, foodies, greens, Los Angelinos, New Yorkers, college grads, Pennsylvanians, etc… 1. Where do they spend time and doing what? – Are they bloggers, on Facebook, Twittering, on YouTube, etc… 1. Develop lists of blogs and their bloggers – Search Google for exactly what you want • “Top mommy blogs,” “best green blogs” – Leverage blogrolls like you would endnotes – Bloglines’ Most Popular Feeds, http://www.bloglines.com/topblogs – Technorati Top 100 Blogs, http://technorati.com/pop/blogs – Technorati Blog Directory http://technorati.com/blogs/directory/ – AllTop http://alltop.com/
  7. 7. Blogger Contact Information • “Whois” is a fine resource if a blog is hosted on its own domain name, such as chrisabraha.com – I recommend: • More and more blogs “private register” – Private registration hides email addresses – DomainTools premium offers historical snapshots of registration information, sometimes showing pre-private register emails • Long-story short: if someone goes out of his way to hide his identity or email, let him go, he does not want to be contacted! • Many blogs have about pages and or offer obfuscated email addresses like cja[at]well[dot]com or embedded in graphics. • Sometimes names and emails can be discovered by searching Google for “chris abraham”+email
  8. 8. Topic Universe Example
  9. 9. Example of an Outgoing Message • We have tried many different styles and this is where we are: – Short, terse, minimal, highly textual, with a clear message and a clear request – Any verbiage that sounds like it is selling or marketing must be removed – All assets, graphics, movies, or videos are collected into a “microsite” or “SMNR” – Do not include conversion GIFs, hyperlinks, hot emails, images, or attachments
  10. 10. Social Media News Release (SMNR) http://banclusterbombs.smnr.us
  11. 11. The SMNR (Steal this Content) • As you might have noticed, our pitches are very spare • We offload all content, message, keywords, images, links, and videos onto what is essentially a microsite • It is convenient for our clients and handy for our outreaches • We can get metrics and not have to change our clients’ websites • To be honest, bloggers are even lazier than journalists • A lot of the time, bloggers steal images and entire tracts of copy, paste it, and then just do a “blockquote” attribution • You’ll get to define message, keyword-density, and even sneak SEO-optimized links in there, even encouraging organic Google-bombing • This allows you to easily keep everything closer to “on message” than you usually can otherwise: SMNRs rock!
  12. 12. Example 2 of Outgoing Message
  13. 13. SMNR For Sharp Electronics http://sharpgreen.smnr.us
  14. 14. Measure Twice, Cut Once • Generally, before any outreach, bloggers are combined into a master universe to make sure there are no dupes or doubles • One blogger can have more than one email – check for doubles • Make sure the master universe does not contain A- list or “do not contact” bloggers (check twice)
  15. 15. Respond Quickly & With Love • At Abraham Harrison, we don’t use autoresponders or let emails wait until morning. When we send out an email outreach, we staff the INBOX almost constantly over the next hours and days • If a blogger gets pissed off by a pitch, we have only minutes to respond • A personal, immediate, and human response can make the difference between earning a blog post or being forwarded to Bad Pitch Blog • When you respond, never lock horns or rise to the bait – people have busy, complex, lives: • "Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle" -- Philo of Alexandria • Always respond with either support or desperate Mea Maxima Culpa!
  16. 16. Tracking Responses & Mentions • Be sure to always track who replies • Also, be sure to remove anyone who asks immediately • Finally, if you can’t find their email, ask them if they use another – some people collect all their email into one account, usually a Gmail account, and reply from there • Also, be sure to track all blog mentions as they occur • Using Google Alerts and Google BlogSearch is generally good enough • Don’t hesitate to ask your bloggers to pop you the link to their post when they say that they will • Also, don’t hesitate to hold a blogger accountable for posting if he offers
  17. 17. Follow-Up Boldly and Proudly • If we don’t get a reply from a blogger, we send 3-4 follow-up emails • We assume that email gets lost, blocked, de-prioritized, ignored, missed, or put off until later – and later never comes because folks are just busy • The squeaky wheel does get the grease and we get our biggest successes in response to the second and third email outreaches • We generally allow a week to pass between email follow-ups
  18. 18. Thank You For Your Time! Chris Abraham President and COO cabraham@abrahamharrison.com @chrisabraham Daniel Krueger Director of Client Services dkrueger@abrahamharrison.com @d13vk www.abrahamharrison.com www.marketingconversation.com Other Suggested Topics for Conversation: •Special Strategies & Techniques for “A-List Bloggers” •Reports, Reporting, and Metrics •Social Media Engagement •Social Network Profile Management •SEO Benefits of Blogger PR •Reputation Defense benefits of Blogger PR

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