In the News – June 2011
In PR Category, PR Shops Come Up Short
While Ad Agencies Stand Tall
By Alexandra Bruell, June 27, 2011
Public relations has been at the Cannes Lions Festival for three years, and the category’s entries were up 40 percent this year, to 819. But as Ad Age reports, there were 105 campaigns on the short list—but only about 20 were entered by PR agencies, compared with 45-plus for ad agencies. Two problems, according to sources, might be “cobbler’s children syndrome—PR shops failing to self-promote” and PR agencies’ “need to report stronger results and achieve more tangible objectives than publicity, identifying ROI such as behavioral change.” Marian Salzman, CEO of ERWW PR, felt, said the writer, that “part of the reason PR agencies are relatively scarce at Cannes is that they lack access to the resource of creative shops.”
Selling a Presidency
By Marian Salzman, June 26, 2011
Salzman, CEO of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, looks at the current 2012 U.S. presidential candidates as brands in her latest weekly column for the Holmes Report’s ThinkTank. Barack Obama “pretty much set the bar for how to market a winning campaign and position oneself as a brand,” she says. And the next election will be “all about resonating with voters and their values,” but “under the lens of brands.” The candidates—like successful brands today—will need to serve their consumers; showcase values and beliefs aligned with them, their communities and the world; be fully transparent; stand for something; and incorporate a 360-degree approach to their marketing efforts.
Euro RSCG: Brutal Honesty, Beached White Males
By Karl Greenberg, June 16, 2011
Trendspotter Marian Salzman decided to present a midyear trends forecast—stepped up from the usual schedule of her annual report—because of all the cultural chaos in recent months. Among her trends, all of which are discussed in this article, are these: The explosion in neurological research will replace “e” words (email, e-commerce) with those starting with “n” (nHancers, nGames, etc.); cell phones are the new trans fats (expect the debate to soon turn to cell-phone use by people under age 14); we will see a return to brutal honesty; and Americans are looking for new rituals.
Is Connectivity the New Killer?
By Marian Salzman, June 16, 2011
Marian Salzman, trendspotter and CEO of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, has long been forecasting the day we’d worry as much about talking on the phone as we did about smoking cigarettes. In light of the new report from the World Health Organization warning of dangers such as brain cancer (and, Salzman wonders, loss of fertility in men who stash their phone in their front pants pocket), she says, “Suddenly, ‘dead zone’ has a new meaning.” She also wonders how big telecom brands and marketers will deal with the news and says maybe we should look to millennials, who don’t use phones for voice calls but just texting, checking in and tweeting.
How Social Media and Sexting Can Kill Your Brand
By Marian Salzman, June 10, 2011
Marian Salzman, a go-to trendspotter and CEO of ERWW PR, has been talking for a while about the trend she calls Brand Me. But in this piece she says “Weinergate” highlights the fact that “we as PR people are often (and nail-bitingly) placing damage control for brands (and celebs and politicos) at the cornerstone of a strategy.” That strategy, and a stealth PR team, are much more important today than ever, she adds, “in light of today’s new normal of full disclosure and nothing to hide.”
Chinese Stars Committed to Young Generations
By Ma Zhenhuan, June 9, 2011
Two well-known figures in Chinese media will be contributing to the One Young World global youth leadership summit in Zurich in September. Shang Wenjie, who won China’s version of “Pop Idol” with the highest number of votes in its history, will perform a song she wrote at the Opening Ceremony on Sept. 1. And James Chau, a main anchor for China Central Television’s CCTV News and a leading global HIV/AIDS activist, will join the list of luminary counselors. Chau is also the first person on the Chinese mainland to be appointed by the U.N. as a UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador.
Street Fight Daily: 06.07.11
By David Hirschman, June 7, 2011
In this “roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal media, technology, advertising and startups,” the writer chose Marian Salzman’s thoughts on the Huffington Post in a piece called “Corporations: Pillars of the Community?” He focused on this idea of hers: “So it stands to reason that big business needs to be looking—wide-eyed—at how it, too, can integrate into their geographic area, by investing in local businesses (by giving them business or by sponsoring fundraisers or backing entrepreneurs) and ultimately supporting the community.”
Corporations: Pillars of the Community?
By Marian Salzman, June 6, 2011
“There’s a real paradox today in the meaning of the word community,” Marian Salzman says at the start to this thought piece. There are, of course, scores of online communities, letting people share likes and dislikes with others on digital and social media. Then there’s the hyperlocal, brick-and-mortar trend in our real-world communities. Take the rise in Patch, farmers markets and local businesses. What Salzman wants to know is, Why aren’t “big brands looking to go local when it comes to the service sector or business-to-business propositions?” Bottom line: “[E]ven if most big corporations are focused on global growth, it’s worth it to them today to view home base as a local source of pride, prosperity and success.”
Pittsburgh a Contender to Host One Young World
By Patty Tascarella, June 2, 2011
The second One Young World summit, a forum started by Kate Robertson, group chairman of Euro RSCG United Kingdom, and David Jones, CEO of Havas and global CEO of Euro RSCG Worldwide, will take place in Zurich in early September. But planning for the 2012 event is already well under way, and Pittsburgh is the only city in the U.S. on the short list to host as many as 3,000 global leaders age 25 and under. This article gives information on how to support Pittsburgh’s bid. The host city will be announced in September.
If Brands Gave Commencement Speeches
By Marian Salzman, June 2, 2011
Graduation speakers nationwide are giving the usual inspirational pep talks to follow dreams, work hard and seize the day. But with unemployment still up and student loan debt at the highest point ever, maybe the speeches need to talk about today’s 24/7/365 work/life blur, less talking and more listening, and making compromises, says ERWW PR CEO Marian Salzman. She then asks, “If your brand were giving a commencement speech, what values would you want it to share with the world?” Read the article for some important answers to consider when you’re facing a potential new audience.
Sexual-Health Products Secure Place in Mainstream Dialogue
By Alexandra Bruell, June 1, 2011
“Consumer demand for new products from sexual health brands is skyrocketing,” says this writer, who leads with Reckitt Benckiser’s recent acquisition of Durex and new positioning as a “sexual intimacy brand” (rather than a typical condom brand) in the United States—and notes that after the acquisition, the company selected Euro RSCG Worldwide PR as its agency of record. The article also discusses consumers’ new comfort level in talking about sex, especially online, and says word-of-mouth and social media are key to PR strategy in the category.