Media Relations: When Google Got Googled
Before meeting my soon-to-be-wife for the first time, I "Googled" her. Google, with its amazing alacrity, turned up several documents in less than a second.
It turned up a paper she had written for a medical journal. It displayed her dissertation. Iteven showed me an article she had written for her college newspaper.
A lot of our personal information is on the web. It's a legitimate concern.
So it was understandable when a CEO became irate when a snarky website published all of his personal information it could find ? including home address and financial worth ? just by going to Google. Sure, it was publicly available information, the CEO acknowledged, but that story was just beyond the pale.
The CEO was so furious, in fact, he ordered his staff not to grant interviews to the news organization, CNet, for an entire year. His choice to "blackball" a website with more than 23 million visitors per month for a full year was a serious one, but one he believed was the right thing to do.
Only one problem. The CEO in question is Eric Schmidt. Mr. Schmidt is the CEO of Google.
In the days following Google's decision, dozens of news organizations ? including National Public Radio, the International Herald Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, and the Associated Press ? covered it. Many of those stories lambasted Google's decision. One story was simply called, "Google Goes Berserk."
Besides being a stunningly tone-deaf decision on Google's part (the kind people should lose their jobs over), there is at least one big lesson to be learned here.
Sometimes, it's better to just be quiet.
Had Google chosen to say nothing after the original CNet story came out, it wouldn't have become an internationally covered story. It wouldn't have made it to the coffee shops of California, the bistros of Buenos Aires, or the patisseries of Paris.
Google took a relatively small story and, through awful crisis management, turned it into a much larger one. Even worse, it gave endless ammunition to Google's critics who have long feared the implications of so much readily accessible information on the web.
Finally, they did at least two other things wrong. We left a message for Google asking for their side of the story. To its credit, one of its representatives, David Crane, did call back within a few hours but said that they have not or will not respond to such queries "on-the-record." That means its enemies continue to get all the ink as Google does nothing. Companies in crisis mode need to say something, even if that means a terse two sentence statement sent via e-mail.
The other thing Mr. Crane did wrong was offer to make comments to me in an "off-the-record" capacity. I'm not a reporter, and was careful about identifying myself honestly. I had no obligation to honor his terms, and could have been the first "reporter" to finally get Google on-the-record.
Brad Phillips is the founder and president of Phillips Media Relations. He was formerly a journalist for ABC News and CNN, and headed the media relations department for the second largest environmental group in the world.
For more information and to sign up for free monthly media relations and media training e-tips, visit http://www.PhillipsMediaRelations.com
Media Relations: When Numbers Lie
NUMBERS, NUMBERS EVERYWHERE
Making Your Own News
Getting a press release published in a newspaper or magazines can be one of the best ways to publicize your business. First, though, you need a good story ? and that can be the hard part.
Publicity: Five Tips for Calling a Reporter
Always ask, "Is now a good time?"
Custom Reasons for Custom Publishing
Once considered the stepchild of the publishing industry, custom publishing now claims a legitimate slice of the B-to-B MarCom pie.
Publicity - Use This System to Track Publicity Progress
Tracking your correspondence with reporters, via phone or email, is important for two reasons. First of all, promises to follow-up can slip between the cracks of daily business and cost you a change at free publicity. Second, you don't ever want to contact a reporter twice about the same story. You will immediately destroy your credibility.
Writing a Press Release: How to Write Quotes
Ideally, you will have two types of quotes in your press release. A quote from yourself is mandatory. To give your release extra impact, get a quote from a third-party.
Transparency in Online Transactions
In these days of every increasing demand and competition, there is a considerable choice available to the cautious consumer. People have the choice of various types of media, if they are looking to shop for any particular product.
Get PR Off the Bench
Something that results in your most important outside audiences doing what you need them to do should not be warming the bench.
Community Based Marketing Strategies
As small businesses we have an opportunity and an obligation to help keep our communities strong. As small business people we have an awesome distribution system, reaching hundreds of people every day who come into our stores. If we are a mobile service business we see hundreds per day on our route. If you volunteer to deliver flyers to all your customers for an upcoming club event, you can develop incredible rapport with these groups. The word of mouth referrals will be great. Consider the fact that these service clubs contain the grass roots movers and shakers of the town. You can put up flyers for events on your counters or post a flyer in the window, this does tremendous advertising for positive events.
The 7 Deadly Sins of Press Releases
A press release is often your only chance to make a great first impression.
PR: Lets Talk Fundamentals
How much more fundamental can you get than this? As a business, non-profit or association manager, if you don't get your most important outside audiences on your side, you will fail.
Marketing-Minded Financial Planners, Create Your Very Own Story to Get Free Publicity
One big mistake that many marketing-minded financial planners make when contacting the media is to drop what's called an "information dump."
Mastering the Media
What do Monica Lewinsky, Shoshanna Lowenstein, and even Richard Hatch have in common? Media exposure. They were ordinary people who became household names.
Business - How to Build it Using the Media
Have you ever noticed that when someone is interviewed onradio, television or in the newspapers about a particularsubject, it tends to be the same people? You may even besaying - "Why don't they ever ask me?"
Publicity: Nailing a Media Interview, Part III (Staying on Topic)
In a media interview, always stick to your main points without rambling or digressing. Practice this when you rehearse.
Publicity: The Right Way for Marketing-Minded Financial Planners to Follow Up with a Reporter
Let's say you've called a reporter with some ideas for stories about financial planning, and they seemed interested. Congratulations! First, pat yourself on the back. It takes intelligence and gumption to come up with ideas that reporters like.
How to Use Community Relations to Grow Your Business
Community relations is one of those marketing strategies that isn't talked about much, even though I venture to say practically everyone ends up doing it at one time or another. Basically, community relations is when you and your business become involved in your community. For instance:
Managers: Do You Trust Your PR?
You can if, as a business, non-profit or associationmanager, you can honestly say you are doing somethingpositive about the behaviors of those important external audiences of yours that most affect your department, group, division or subsidiary.
Getting Free Publicity with Radio Interviews
Imagine that you are a radio producer. You have to fill three hours a day, five days a week, every single week. You need topics that inform, enrage, entertain, educate, motivate, and otherwise engage your audience. How do you find those topics, and the guests to make them come alive?
Another way to really become known in your area is to speak up. Make yourself available to talk to every civic,business and educational group that will have you. Stress your expertise, and, as with writing the newspaper column,never try to sell anything-except your reputation as a knowledgeable, trustworthy professional.
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