Digital PR takes advantage of the viral web to expand visibility and syndication across traditional media, new media and the end audience.

The traditional PR approach is focused on direct media relationships to drive exposure opportunities and influence brand/message awareness. Typically the approach targets known relationships within traditional media. An effective traditional media program remains a critical engagement strategy  – particularly in highly regulated industries where compliance and regulatory constraints limit the full adoption of social media and internet outreach.  However, the traditional approach is no longer adequate.  With the advent of digital, we see a fundamental shift in media and news consumption. We are moving from information push to information pull. Information consumers can now use search engines and RSS readers to filter, manage and control the content they see.  To succeed, today’s PR leaders must engage both traditional media influencers and the new influencers like bloggers, forums and communities across social networks.

An effective PR strategy must incorporate Digital PR. Digital PR takes advantage of the viral nature of the web to expand visibility and message syndication across traditional media, new media and the end customer audience.  Below is a quick checklist of what you might consider in your PR strategy and plans. The list is based on how we at Revenue Architects approach building a Digital PR capability with clients:

Digital PR Strategy

  • Clarify goals and metrics for digital PR
  • Align target audience, key words, channels and influencers
  • Set up, selecting and supporting listening services to gain insight into activity and sentiment across the web
  • Use PR and marketing to speaking directly to your customers and buyers with targeted messages
  • Architect and select digital technologies – blogs, RSS, rich media, web 2.0, listening tools enhance the viral impact of news and information distribution
  • Evaluate and recommending newswire services that deliver effectively digitally
  • Facilitate the operating model and governance across functions

Digital PR Delivery

  • Optimize press releases and distribution strategies for organic visibility, inbound links and visibility
  • Support campaigns for new influencer outreach in the blog, community, wikisphere and broader mediasphere
  • Produce creative content including innovative video – Documentary Branding, Explainer Videos, Impact Creative
  • Manage listening programs and campaign analytical services
  • Manage key word implementation, landing pages, and key word optimization
  • Use more native social media style and content to engage new audience and increase transparency
  • Improve tactics around press release key words and links to enhance SEO

 

 

 

If you are exploring Social Media and trying to understand the impact it is having on media and business, check out this video on YouTube.  (adjust your volume)

 

 

 

I connected with iMedia about a speaking role at the Financial Services Marketing Summit in New York on October 15.  I will give a short talk to explore proposed solutions to the question of “how to operate your digital marketing in a way that doesn’t lose all of the personal touch you have with your customers offline.” We will use a fictional banking case study/scenario. I will then join a group of other “problem solvers” on stage with Jay Livingston, SVP, Global Marketing, Bank of America and two other brand marketers to discuss the problem, proposed solutions, and get the audience involved in a town hall type of format.

Fun!

Here is the abstract from the event web site – maybe we will see you there.

The Bottom Line for Digital in Financial Marketing

 

Welcome to iMedia’s Financial Marketing Summit—now in its third year—where you can join more than 100 senior marketing executives from a broad range of financial service companies, as well as their agency partners, as they spend full day exploring the digital marketing opportunities and challenges for this important sector of the online marketing industry.

Now more than ever, marketing executives for financial services companies are focused on strategies that deliver the maximum ROI. Digital is unquestionably a leading direct-response and lead-gen powerhouse. In a financial environment where trust and stability are key components of a consumer’s decision-making process, however, marketers are looking to deploy the full-range of targeted branding options within the digital environment, not to mention ensuring they’re part of the social media digital fabric being woven by their customers every day.

iMedia’s Financial Marketing Summit is a one-day immersive experience to gain insights into these challenges. And it’s FREE to financial marketing executives and their agency partners!

I will write a more complete debrief from my experience as a speaker on Social Media for Advisors and engaging with attendees and colleagues at Schwab’s Impact 2009 conference. It was a great event – very well run – and also well attended by Schwab’s registered investment adivsor community.  While there, I was able to have a catch up with Kristen Luke. Kristen attended my talk and also provided me some insights from her current projects. Below is a summary of her lessons from the conference and here is a link to the blog post.

  • Lesson #1: The more channels a client uses to interact with his or her advisor, the higher his or her satisfaction with that advisor.
  • Lesson #2:  100% of High Net Worth individuals ask their CPA for a referral to a financial advisor.
  • Lesson #3: Become better at dating your prospects.
  • Lesson #4: Web 2.0 helps with organic search engine optimization.
  • Lesson #5: There are tools available to make it easier for social media to comply with SEC and FINRA rules.

Kristen Luke is a Revenue Architects colleague and the Principal of Wealth Management Marketing, a firm dedicated to providing marketing strategies and support for financial advisors. Kristen works with independent advisors to develop effective marketing plans and provides the back office support required to implement the strategies.

My slides are posted on slideshare.

I am heading out west to San Diego today to speak at the Charles Schwab Impact 2009 Conference. It should be a great event and I am looking forward to meeting Advisors from around the country and discussing keys to Internet Marketing and social media. One of the top issues Advisors face is navigating the compliance considerations from FINRA.

I think that FINRA needs to update and improve its direction related to Internet communication and advertising so that the use of tools like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Podcast, YouTube, Blogs and other tools can be more clearly understood. For example – once content is approved by the compliance officer- why should there be restrictions in the syndication links to the content across these networks?

Here is a Slideshare of my talk. Let me know what you think.

I am working with Advisors to address these strategies and challenges and I am seeking input, so feel free to comment:

  • What are some best practices for using social media to promote a Financial Advisor firm?
  • How should an Advisor use Twitter, Facebook, a Blog or Linkedin?
  • Why does it matter?

 

This video speaks nicely to what Revenue Architects believes our clients need to consider!

 

Pat Lynch from Women’s Radio interviewed me last week about developing revenue architectures using Internet Marketing and Social Media strategies. I first met Pat at the Gilbane Conference in San Francisco.  Pat is the Editor-in-Chief and Host of “Speak Up!” Speak Up! invites women, and also men, who “speak” to women in terms of their values, their goals and their strong sense of community, to address issues, opportunities and successes that need to be heard by a larger audience of women leaders.

Here is the link to the interview. The topics we discussed were relevant to women owned businesses – and also apply to businesses of all sizes:

  • Authentic Marketing – don’t just optimize your website with SEO (Search Optimization) but approach your strategy in an authentic way – deliver real value for your target audience through focused content, tools and information.
  • Audience Relationship Management – go beyond “CRM” and outbound “interuption” marketing and engage your target audience through awareness and capture inbound audience intent with search visibility
  • Using Social Media – extend your presence beyond your website by engaging in social media presence to drive visibility
Thanks, Pat!

 

 

Per request, I am sharing 2009 Impact  presentation here.

 

Helping the Greensboro Association Go Online

Over the last few years, I have worked with a number of larger associations to modernize their online experience and build and enhance community among their membership. With the advent of web 2.0 and social media, these associations recognized that to sustain their membership and attract new members, they needed to deliver a more compelling experience online.  At the same time, I have had the good fortune to serve on the board of the Greensboro Association in Vermont. We are a very small community organization to enhance the village and the beautiful Caspian Lake area by promoting practices that enhance community interaction, protect the lake and serve members and visitors to this idyllic place in northern Vermont.  As the demographics of the community are changing and fewer summer members spend an extended time in the village and local residents become more engaged in the Association, the community will increasingly rely on the online experience to stay engaged with the community and the Association on a continuous, year round basis.

As part of this team, I volunteered to help launch a new web site and services for the community. Naturally, with the size of the organization, we did not have the luxury of a fully customized web presence and needed to deliver value within a low budget! What was the solution? I worked with the committee to select and launch the site on a strong back-end Joomla platform so we could take advantage of the plug and play modules and extensions available in the open community and the long term flexibility. The site was deployed with an off-the-shelf template, which provides a lot of flexibility- though we know that, over time, we will want to enhance the user experience. We decided on a number of extensions to enhance the functionality to include:

 

  • Online member directory
  • Resources application
  • Discussion forum
  • Community calendar and event listing
  • Connected Facebook group

 

Our membership is diverse demographically and not all members are fully comfortable with online experiences. Going forward, we will need to help committee and association leaders take a more active role in managing the online discussions, publishing content and engaging the site as an extension of the collaborative experience of the Association. We consider the online experience an extension to our already rich human interactions among the membership – while also appealing to those more comfortable and familiar with online 24×7 access now available.

I am sure an approach like the one we took would work with community organizations of a similar size and focus. Below is a presentation I made recently at the Annual Meeting. This presentation will give you an idea of the site and its functionality.

 

 

 

I have just returned from a terrific two day visit with OPEI at the Reynolds Plantation in Greensboro, GA.

I was speaking there on Social Media and Web 2.0. (Presentation below). OPEI is an intimate Association who’s members are both competitors and friends – they come together each year for a few days of learning and social activities at some of the finer venues across the US.

This was a chance to speak with leaders in Outdoor Equipment Manufacturing. A key focus they have is on advocating their message as a strong contributor to our both our economy and as facilitator of a green environment through their critical role in grass cutting and turf care – did you know grass is #2 behind trees as the top carbon-reducing natural asset? See the Slideshare presentation here…