The BLACK paPR Report

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PR from an African American Perspective

Playdates

Last week, I blogged about status updates, posts and tweets showing up in a public timeline in the form of Google and other searches.  Some of those updates can come back to haunt you if they are not carefully censored. 

That’s a bad look.

However, I am a huge proponent of ‘playdates’ with clients or even by myself. Playdates is the intentional use of updates, posts and tweets to initiate a discussion, engage online followers/friends or even to track traffic to a site. Playdates when used intentionally is a great publicity, PR and marketing tool.  Playdates are anything but random though the results can be.

During the presidential campaign process had a lot of fun, sometimes too much, tweeting on Twitter. On some days I posted random updates but during pivotal campaign moments I was intentional for a variety of reasons. The chief reason was to articulate, without directly boasting,  my ability as a practitioner and publicist to predict outcomes. Perhaps, my most impressive playdate were the days leading to Mr. Obama’s selection for vice-president. As my choices narrowed I predicted it would be Joe Biden and many of the people who follow my tweets objected. That wasn’t a big deal. The big deal was when I projected to the minute when the Obama campaign would reveal via text message the selection. I tweeted it would be at 3 a.m. and while many of my followers disagreed,  the playdate presented me with an opportunity to explain in 140 characters why I thought it would be at that time. (Wisdom dictates you send out breaking news at the start of a print and broadcast shift change. It’s a courtesy extended, plus if you want the news to break big, you break it at dawn.) And because my updates were unlocked and unprotected (a part of the public timeline), I acquired a lot of new followers on Twitter. 

I also established myself as an expert in a way that was comfortable for me who doesn’t like to brag or boast. I just like to work and win. Go figure.

Practitioners and publicists can use playdates to post information on projects or just the normal tasks related to our work. And we can also have fun with clients.

I love scheduling in playdates with clients and even potential clients to demonstrate the viral nature of online exchanges. With all due respect to my clients and potential clients, I never worry if these playdates will cost me in income, because that’s the nature of social networking/media – sharing. Plus, it’s not all I know. 

Facebook.com is perhaps the best tool for playdates and intentional exchanges because updates and conversations can be seen on friends’ home pages. I’ve acquired new friends using this practice and even business inquiries. Clients and potential clients have received the same as well as a method of tracking people from Facebook.com to their sites. 

Have fun by posting links, videos, articles and anything you can think of to draw attention to the playdate. 

Best, Robin

robin@thejstandard.com

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Filed under: Client Relations, Help for the Practitioner, Social Media, , , , , ,

Contagious 2

royaleLast week I introduced everyone to the amazing vlogs I’d discovered on Facebook.com. There are more and this vlog by Royale Watkins somewhat explains the power of these videos on Facebook.com — they engage and connect:

If I had the embedded code I’d share one of the most poignant vlogs recorded by Royale addressing the suicide of Abraham Briggs, the 19 year old Floridian who took a lethal dose of pills on-camera and then laid down on his father’s bed to die as people observed via a camera he’d set up. That camera ran for over 12 hours and someone finally had the courage and sense to contact the company hosting the streaming video to report what happened to Abraham to authorities. 

Comedian Stevie Mack created the FBTV Network to serve as a hub for the vlogging talent pool on the social network. Members of the group are privileged to information regarding intellectual property issues and video hosting.          

Last night I discovered another gem, a real GEM (Good Enough Mother), René Syler, the author of Good-Enough Mother: The Perfectly Imperfect Book of Parenting (Simon Spotlight Entertainment). René spent four years as an anchor on CBS’ The Early Show, and is a spokeswoman for the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Read about René HERE. René’s vlogs are incredibly smart and witty, they also incredible marketing tools that engage readers of her book and engage a legion of new fans. (PR Tip: Wanna sell a book? Sell the author first.)

Watch here:

Connect and engage. Vlogging as a marketing device or networking device will not work without making an effort to connect with people and then engaging them on a personal level. The beauty of these wonderful vlogs is that people, famous and infamous, are building the field and people are showing up. This is real reality TV. 

Best, Robin

robin@thejstandard.com

Filed under: African Americans, Public Relations, Social Media, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , ,

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