Michelle Sullivan Communications

De Madonna à Lady Gaga: ou comment définir sa marque à l’ère 2.0

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(photo: Wenn.com)

Pas nécessaire d’être un Perez Hilton ou un Kanye West pour voir les ressemblances entre Mlle Gaga et La Madone. Si on s’en tient au concept de l’évolution de la marque personnelle (the personal brand), ces deux phénomènes du pop ont pleinement tiré profit des outils marketing à leur disposition. Madonna s’est réinventée ad vitam aeternam et a dominé MTV. Elle était de son époque. Normal, donc, que la machine Lady Gaga carbure plutôt au 2.0.

Cette vidéo intitulée « Brand Romance », de nos amis chez Newcast,  démontre à quel point Lady Gaga est la poster-girl du marketing 2.0

Brand Romance par Newcast de Newcast VivaKi sur Vimeo.

De la part d’une fille de lycée catho à deux autres, bravo mesdames!

Help Child Soldiers : a powerful Internet campaign

(Except for the fact that the site is in Flash and that the only social network sharing widgets/commenting capabilities to be found are related to the videos), this is a brilliant web campaign for a very important subject: the human rights of Child Solidiers. The social web has become a very dynamic tool in the activist’s toolbox, and I’m hoping to help Equitas, the human rights organisation on whose board I sit, leverage it to its full advantage as it goes through the process of revamping its own outdated website.

We definitely live in interesting times.

Check it out … and please support this initiative by War Child Canada, whose mission is to work « with children all over the world to reduce poverty, to provide education and to defend their rights. (to) work tirelessly to help children whose lives have been torn apart by conflict, providing them with the means to build a brighter future. »

Hat tip to @DonnaPapacosta who brought this to my attention through Facebook.

Disclosure update: War Child Canada is a client of Hill & Knowlton Toronto.

From the WPP Pro Bono Campaign site:

In 2008 War Child Canada, a charity which supports children in war zones, launched an intentionally deceptive and provocative campaign to call attention to the estimated 300,000 children around the world who have been forced or drafted into armed groups.

Partnering with War Child’s advertising agency, John st., H&K Toronto’s digital team helped develop a digital strategy for their ‘Help Child Soldiers’ campaign. The team used various media channels, including YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and blogging sites. They also contacted influential Canadian bloggers and taught War Child Canada staff how to tweet.

The ‘Help Child Soldiers’ campaign was a success. Just two weeks after it began the ‘Help Child Soldiers’ video was the number one featured video on YouTube.com’s global home page. Traffic doubled to the charity’s website (www.warchild.ca) and 1,000 people signed the campaign petition. Most importantly, donations to War Child Canada increased by $50,000 Canadian dollars, year over year.

No time for Twitter? You must be busier than Toronto mayor David Miller.

If you work as a social media specialist, you’ve inevitably come across the line ‘I don’t have time for things like Facebook and  Twitter’. Understandable coming from a client; most Canadian companies haven’t even started to test the social media waters or are just getting their feet wet. More of a mystery coming from a communications professional. When it comes to answering the latter, I usually just smile and nod, knowing that it’s just a matter of time before reality catches up with him or her. Saying you don’t have time for social media when you’re in the communications field is akin to going back in time 50 years or so and saying you’re in advertising, but don’t have time to understand this new-fangled thing called a television.

When it comes to the former, however, I try to put social media in context, explaining that there are tools to help make its use more efficient and, above all, emphasizing the power of it all.

The next time a client tells you he (meaning he, his communications team and his brand) doesn’t have time for Twitter, and you would like to beg to differ, ask him, without being sarcastic, if he’s busier than the mayor of Canada’s largest city. Then bring up the example of Joel Dembe. He might just start to see things from another perspective.

Who is Joel Dembe? No one famous or powerful or well positioned enough to bend the ear of someone like a big city mayor and get him to jump into action. Or so you’d think.

Joel has 75 Twitter followers, follows 96 people and is on 2 Twitter lists. A 26 year old marketing analyst, it’s reasonable to expect that he’d be on Twitter. What’s less expected is that when he found himself stuck on the 18th floor of his Toronto office highrise, because a power outage caused by yesterday’s heat wave shut down the elevators he needed to leave the building in his wheelchair, the person he chose to reach out to using Twitter is Toronto’s mayor David Miller. Even more surprising? One of the busiest men in the city was listening, and responded. Surely the Mayor of Canada’s largest metropolitan area must have one of his flunkies monitoring Twitter and answering for him, you say? Well, within 6 minutes of sending that tweet, Dembe received a Twitter reply and within 15 seconds of tweeting Toronto’s mayor his phone number as requested, Dembe received a call from David Miller himself. They spoke for 5 minutes:

Dembe said he made it clear to Miller and the fire department that his situation was not an emergency, but was happy to know that someone was listening.

Source: Maclean’s

How’s that for democracy at work?

If the mayor has flunkies working his Twitter account for him, they’re highly efficient flunkies with a direct line to the little red phone on the mayor’s desk. Either way, the good PR Miller has received online, in print and on national newscasts as a result should be proof enough of the power of using social media to be there to listen … and to respond. Not to mention that chances are he’s secured at least one more vote for the next election (if he were running again, which he’s not).

Our clients should be where their customers are. If their customers are using social media, our clients need to be there too. Let’s just hope that as communications advisors, we’re there as well. Before our clients are, ideally. In an age where some of our clients are starting to earmark their entire marketing/PR campaign budget for social media initiatives, we have no choice but to do so if we want to remain relevant.

Would it be great if David Miller would publish his phone number and take phone calls too? Well sure. But let’s not get carried away, now 😉

Inspiration on Facebook: Anne Frank House, a museum with a story

There are some truly wonderful things being done with Facebook, and the Anne Frank House is behind one very touching initiative that serves not only to promote the museum and its work, but to fulfill its mission of ensuring that the memory of  Anne Frank, the young symbol of courage during the holocaust of WWII, remains fresh in the minds of new generations. The museum’s Internet site, The Secret Annex, is promoted on Facebook through a Fan page, as well as an application that allows users to have quotes from Anne Frank’s diary posted daily on their Facebook walls.

Today’s quote from Anne is extraordinary, when you realize the conditions under which the words were written.  Definitely one to reflect upon:

Think of all the beauty in yourself and around you and be happy.

Hat tip to Marisa Curcio of Oxfam Quebec for bringing the fan page and application to my attention.