Michelle Sullivan Communications

YULBiz : nouveau site web

J’ai eu beaucoup de plaisir à retrouver la ‘gang’ de YULBizzeux (?!) mardi dernier au Café Mélies. Sympa, aussi, de poursuivre la soirée au Red Thai avoisinant.

Ce regroupement de blogueurs d’affaires se rencontre le dernier mardi de chaque mois pour réseauter et parler blogues, médias sociaux, SEO, Facebook. Bref, communications.

Et YULBiz fait des petits depuis quelques temps déjà. La prochaine fois que vous serez de passage à Québec, Paris, Barcelone, Bruxelles et Varsovie, vous trouverez un réseau bien établi, c’est garanti.

Vous trouverez le nouveau site YULBiz international ici.

Enfin, un vrai chez soi.

Ce qui me permet d’annoncer que 3e mardi Third Tuesday Montréal aura, lui aussi, son petit chez soi en ligne, grâce à une entente de commandite négociée avec K3 Media. On devrait être en mesure d’en faire le grand dévoilement le soir de notre première activité, le 19 février prochain.

À suivre!

Article of the day: Business Gets Social

This January 14th article in eMarketer looks at the realities of B2B PR in the social media age. While it leaves blogs out of its survey for some reason, it still comes to the conclusion that companies need to start paying more attention to social media, web-based events, trade shows and conferences in order to reach corporate decision makers.

Quote : In fact, according to MarketingSherpa, the number of people involved in purchase decisions continues to grow, averaging 21 people in larger companies.

« The most efficient way to ‘see’ more prospects and influencers face to face, » says Ms. Phillips, « is through the use of new online media alternatives. »

Article and report here.

Corporate screw up of the month : Target


There’s an old marketing adage that goes something like this : there no such thing as bad press, just make sure you spell my name right whatever you have to say about me.

But are you kidding me? Did T-a-r-g-e-t really want to be the TARGET of the blogosphere’s wrath when they responded to a blogger inquiry this way?

“Good Morning Amy,

Thank you for contacting Target; unfortunately we are unable to respond to your inquiry because Target does not participate with non-traditional media outlets. This practice is in place to allow us to focus on publications that reach our core guest.

Once again thank you for your interest, and have a nice day.”

Dave Jones and Doug Walker use this case to launch their new Shill podcast. It has the honour of making the podcast’s ‘shit list’ (pardonnez mon français, comme diraient nos amis dans le ROC)

Doug talks about ‘oily’ stock responses of customer service reps.

Somehow I doubt the customer service rep made this up : no CSR is going to deign comment on corporate practices regarding media. Sadly, my gut tells me that the PR dept at Target is responsible for this positioning.

Either way, it’s regrettable to treat anyone with such condescension. Especially dangerous to treat someone with an audience this way. The result? Predictable. As my finger moves towards the ‘publish’ key, there are 88 comments for this posting.

Interesting tone to the Shill podcast, by the way. Short, but not sweet. Down and dirty, more like it. Pretty refreshing. May I never incur their wrath …

Quote of the day courtesy of Dave Jones, imagining the mindset of Target’s PR dept :

The Web : a fad.

And he’s right about another thing, by the way. Prepare to see this reference appear in every single talk on how-not-to-manage-blogger-relations from now on.

The Edelman / WalMart team must be kinda relieved… there’s a new kid in town to kick around.

Campaign of the day : Two Tits and a Vote

It’s provocative, humourous and launches a direct hit against wait times for women’s health care in Ireland. Inspired by the real-life stuggles of a blogger, this PR campaign is already generating a nice buzz.

Sabrina Dent, the driving force behind the lobbying initiative is quoted in the TT&AV media release as saying :

Women make up more than 50% of the Irish population, but as a group, we’re not particularly politically active, nor are women or our issues well represented in government. Of the current lot of TDs*, only 12% are women. Because we’re not vocal enough as voters, we’re not regularly demanding attention where we want it to be focused.

The blog houses not only posts, but petitions, letter writing and postcard campaigns, an Action Alerts mailing list, a comment stream, links to resources as well as a donation tool.

Visibility in the Irish Daily Mirror here and the Irish Independent here.

Behind the scenes stuff on Sabrina’s blog starts here. American-born Sabrina is a freelance web designer, internet marketer and ‘sometime’ journalist now living in Cork.

As for the anonymous blogger whose case is outlined in the TT&AV campaign, her outrage begins in an October 2007 post entitled Girl Trouble and the Irish Health System.

This form of armchair activism will certainly continue to rise in popularity as more and more grassroot movements come to recognize the distinct advantages that come with harnessing the power of social media.

I’ll be following this as a particular case study, as it fits right in with some tactics I would have liked to have used a year or two ago with clients who just weren’t ready for them.

* Teachtaí Dála (member of the Irish parliament)

Blog post of the day : Tech PR Gems 2007

Today’s blog post of the day is actually a year old. It’s fascinating in that it’s a snapshot of the pre-Facebook era, back when MySpace commanded the spotlight. Ok, maybe fascinating to me and a few other social media freaks with a sense of the historical. But fascinating nonetheless.

I feel like I’ve opened a time capsule.

In her post, the blogger gives some visibility to Tretorn/Puma, whose PR rep (Karl) set up a MySpace page, invited tons of ‘hot chicks’ as a means to to lure in men to his MySpace page (kinda like a Ladies’ night at the local club), then proceeded to give free Tretorn running shoes away to his ‘friends’.

Here’s what the blogger wrote in her post :

All I was told I had to do was wear them and tell everyone what I thought of them. So I decided, a blog post would work. I LOVE the shoes. They are fun, snazzy, colorful and comfortable and everyone constantly asks where I got them when I wear them out.

Blog post here

Be sure to read the comment thread. Karl contributes actively, and is transparent about his strategy. I’ve added a comment of my own, hoping for a where-are-they-now kind of update on the campaign. I see a Facebook group (not started by Karl) but it’s not going anywhere fast, from the looks of things.

As for the MySpace page, it seems to have been taken down. Campaign over, I guess.

So there it is. A new PR blog for the blogroll and a ‘new’ case study on my social media radar. Here’s hoping Karl gets back to me.

Tech PR Gems blog : Thoughts and insights at the intersection of technology and public relations in the 21st century from the folks at Topaz Partners.