Category Archive: media relations

@NBCOlympics takes gold in social media for the 2018 Winter Olympics

Olympics BlogThe #WinterOlympics have swept the nation and many have turned their attention to Pyeongchang. But the deluge of coverage isn’t just on your TV. Post after post about the Olympics are likely filling up your feeds, from Facebook and Twitter to Instagram and Snapchat. With such stiff competition, one account has climbed its way to the top in the arena that is social media.

Here are the top five reasons why we believe @NBCOlympics is taking home the gold:

  1. Outstanding preparation.

Those behind @NBCOlympics have obviously done their homework. Just by looking through the various platforms, you can see a lot of preparation was done. One post we believe represents this best is the “100 gold medals” video that was posted immediately after Shaun White took home Team USA’s 100th gold medal in the Winter Olympics. With the amount of research and the emotional pull, it’s obvious this video wasn’t put together in five minutes.

  1. Tapping into what’s trending.

On social media, the conversation moves faster than you can refresh your page. In order to get people to engage with your content, you need to plug yourself into the ever-changing discussion. @NBCOlympics is doing a great job keeping up-to-date with what’s trending. When Twitter exploded over snowboarder Chloe Kim tweeting about ice cream and churros, @NBCOlympics seized the opportunity in the form of a hilarious video featuring a churro in the place of the gold medalist’s snowboard.

  1. Creating shareable content.

What catches people’s attention on the internet and makes them laugh? Meme-worthy photos and hilarious captions. People love laughing at memes and most importantly, sharing them with their followers. @NBCOlympics has been creating some excellent content, balancing the professional and newsworthy with the more lighthearted.

  1. Reacting to outside events.

Just like it’s important to stay up-to-date with what’s trending, brand managers need to keep in mind what’s going on in the world. Valentine’s Day happens every year on February 14, and this year, it fell during the Olympics. @NBCOlympics did a great job using this holiday to write creative and funny posts like these Valentine’s Day cards.

  1. Encouraging engagement.

When you’re creating social media content, one of the main goals is to drum up engagement. @NBCOlympics is doing an incredible job creating content that gets people involved with the Winter Olympics. One way those behind the account are achieving this is through #EverydayOlympics. These are videos of ordinary people “competing” in Olympic events in their everyday lives, which both encourages people to create their own content and share with the brand and encourages others to comment and share.

If you’re looking for ways to spice up your social media accounts, get some inspiration from the account that deserves the gold, @NBCOlympics. And if you want some help in reaching gold status yourself, give us a call at 407-390-9999 or email Will at will@wellonscommunications.com. We’re already feeling inspired and can’t wait to help you become a social media champion.

 

 

Competing for attention in the Age of Distraction

Think for a moment about all the distractions that compete for attention in your work life.

Phone calls, texts, emails, meetings. Questions from employees. Questions from clients. Unanticipated interruptions. Add to this your personal life, which has the same ongoing level of activity.

WC#1-18, Jan 25, 2018The result? Very little time to stop and ask “Where are we, where are we going, how are we going to get there, and what are we going to say about ourselves that will help us achieve our goals?”

Now, put yourself in the mindset of your target audience and your clients. They suffer from the same busy professional and personal challenges you experience.

The point? Offices – and the people who manage and work in them – are enormously busy. In short, offices are centers of multi-tasking that offer little or no time to pause and contemplate the next steps.

Working in the Age of Distraction

Cal Newport, a computer scientist at Georgetown University, is the author of Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World.

Newport points out that constant distractions that challenge our work life tend to dominate our work life. They take away from what Newport calls Deep Work, which is the ability to focus without distraction on a demanding task.

According to Newport, Shallow Work (the opposite of Deep Work) fragments and pre-empts one’s ability to come up with one of those benchmark “A-ha” solutions that can make your unique selling proposition stand apart.

Apply Deep Work to communications and you get a sense of how important it is to think differently and clearly, without distraction, and how it can transform how you go about your business and what you say about it.

You can get learn more about Deep Work in a fascinating report that recently was broadcast on National Public Radio.

Getting your message past the distractions

So, how does Wellons Communications help you succeed in the Age of Distraction?

We adhere to the notion of keeping it simple. We develop strategies, approaches, and messages aimed at battling through the communications clutter.

When possible, we use simple, declarative sentences. And we project the same message over and over again, using consistency to ensure that once we have captured attention, our message is reinforced until our audience has absorbed and agreed with it.

What does simplicity do for your marketing?

Our “keep it simple” approach delivers three key benefits to your overall marketing approach:

1. Simple messages are easy to understand.

2. Simple messages answer “What’s in it for me?”

3. Simple messages attract attention.

The most visual example of great message-making in its simplest form is a billboard. They are quick to read, present a single thought, and tell you what they think you need to learn.

Let us simplify your public relations and communications.

If you have read this far, you’ve been distracted enough. If our message has worked, we hope you will want to learn more about how Wellons Communications can assist you in marketing your product or service. You can reach me at 407-339-0879 or by email at will@wellonscommunications.com.

Believe me, I will be happy for the distraction.

How to get more media coverage for your company

Sometimes you make news and don’t even know it. Other times, you have a big story to tell, but you fail to capitalize on it.

Companies that generate positive publicity are often the first to respond to opportunities and take advantage of them. They move with a sense of urgency and find a way to cut through the approval process to put their message ahead of others competing for recognition.Past deadlines

Journalists, no matter what media they serve (TV, online, print), work against deadlines — and that means those who recognize deadlines and respond to them as quickly as possible are often those chosen to be quoted or recognized, particularly in fast-breaking news situations.

Here’s the formula: Editorial need + Content = Publicity

Editors have an insatiable need for content. The journalists who serve the editors (and ultimately, their audience) are required to create that content — and deliver it in time to meet demanding editorial deadlines.

Publicity-hungry companies, however, often drag their heels in making decisions about getting ahead of the news or responding to it. They often bring too many people into the decision-making process which slows up the approval process and causes them to issue news after it has already broken or moved out of the news cycle.

Jack be nimble. Jack be quick

Take a close look within your organization and identify who can (and should) make decisions on issuing news information.

The list should be short (the fewer the better) and limited to those who can make on-the-spot decisions while still ensuring whatever you issue is accurate and meets the criteria of what editors or journalists are seeking.

Strive for decisions that allow your publicist or PR team to get the news out the door and to the media. Drafts of press releases, quotes, plans and programs that sit in inboxes don’t have a chance until the information is actually distributed. And if that information is issued after a deadline, fuhgeddaboudit, as our friends in Manhattan would say.

The companies who make the news first are often those who reacted quickly or anticipated a journalistic need.

Be a soothsayer. Identify — or announce — a trend.

Sometimes news exists where you least expect it — like in research about your industry or observations from your staff.

If you can recognize a trend, you can own the trend. But you have to tell people about that trend before they can recognize it.

If you see, for example, that contract managers are overwhelmed by data, resulting in missing contract expiration dates or the information in the fine print, say it. And back it up with data that makes your observation valid.

Even if the information is old hat to you, it may be brand new to a journalist, particularly if that journalist is new to your beat.

Editors love to “discover” trends and reporters love fleshing out what might be totally new information for their readers and viewers.

Does all this guarantee news coverage?

Nope.

When you compete for news, you are up against more than your competitors.

You are battling for share of mind and space against everything else in the world. Presidential tweets. Kim Jong Un’s latest missile test. Taylor Swift’s hairstyle. Tropical depressions in the Caribbean. Solar eclipses. The latest diet trend.

Your news has to battle its way through a maze that is constantly shifting, with stories moving up and down in relevance.

News shape-shifting is the primary reason no one can guarantee publicity.

You must be willing to release information on time, with the same sense of urgency editors and journalists live by. You must provide information that makes sense for each media’s audience. You must put your news into a competitive posture…and the simple act of getting it out there is the first step. You news cannot make news while residing an inbox.

We work to serve our clients…and the media in which they want to appear.

Our team has experienced how news teams function…from both sides of the desk. We know how challenging news-gathering can be. And we know how challenging getting news out to editors and reporters can be.

If you want to get more news coverage, particularly coverage that defines you as a recognized leader in your chosen field, call on us.

We work quickly, effectively, and with the kind of savvy that comes from working in a newsroom.

Find out more. Call me at 407-339-0879 or email me at will@wellonscommunications.com.

Social media lessons from The Bachelorette

Whether you love it, or love to hate it, The Bachelorette is one of the most successful reality series on TV. But perhaps the only thing more entertaining than the on-screen drama is the social media drama that seems to follow contestants. As season 12 of The Bachelorette winds down, we thought it would be interesting to reflect back on lessons learned. No, not love lessons, but rather lessons you can use to build your social media following.

Promotion is everything

Robby better #TeamRoJo instagram

Brands use social media to promote their goods and services. Bachelorette contestants use social media to promote themselves. Robby Hayes is a perfect example. The Florida native has made it to tonight’s finale, in which he will either propose to JoJo or be left heartbroken in Thailand. Robby’s motives have been called into question multiple times this season. Check out his Instagram and you’ll understand why. He broke up with a long-term girlfriend just before learning he’d be a contestant on the show, he has tried his hand at modeling, and he’s constantly working on improving his image. He’s even been rumored to have paid others to promote his brand using #TeamRoJo. And while we certainly don’t recommend being quite as smarmy as Robby, his tactics certainly keep people talking.

Give the people what they want – content

Providing your audience with newsworthy and authentic content is important in today’s social media-crazed world. No Bachelorette contestant has done that better than resident villain Chad Johnson. Despite being kicked off early in the season, Chad’s bad boy persona has grown immensely on his Twitter and Instagram accounts. He has dated his fellow co-stars exes, he’s bought the domain names of other contestants and he’s created hashtags for his ridiculous insights (#Chadisms and #BadChad). His content might be crazy, but it’s exactly what people expect from the memorable contestant, and he provides it often.

Chad Twitter

Say yes to engagement

Wells Twitter

No, not the engagement we expect on tonight’s finale—the social media engagement! Responding to and interacting with followers is important to building a brand. Making them feel like part of a community is essential to growing that community. We can think of no two contestants that have been better at interacting with their fans than Wells Adams and James Taylor. Both adorable underdogs of the season utilize their social media to engage their followers. Whether it’s Wells’ drunken Snapchat stories as he watches The Bachelorette on Monday nights, or James Taylor’s hometown concert contest, they reach out to fans like no other. Any brand would do well to borrow from their tactics when connecting with followers.

James Taylor Insta - interaction with fans

We know we can’t wait to see who is “the one” for JoJo on tonight’s finale —and we can’t wait to put some of these social media strategies to the test.

Online reading: Changing the way we think

In today’s society, it’s getting easier and easier to reach for our phones and tablets to read the latest news story, article or book. Businesses and classrooms are turning away from mail-outs and textbooks in favor of marketing emails and ebooks. But what does that mean for the way we take in information?

Digital reading Apparently, a lot. According to The Washington Post, your brain doesn’t comprehend the information you read online the same way it does in print. Digital screens seem to cause people to focus on the information they are reading at the time instead of how it fits in a broader context.

Researchers from Dartmouth College and Carnegie Mellon came up with different experiments that could compare the effects of reading on different platforms. In one experiment, a group of participants read a short story online and another group read a printout of the story. A pop quiz was given to the participants once they were done reading, and it revealed that the physical-copy readers scored better on questions requiring participants to make inferences, while digital-copy readers scored better on concrete questions about the text.

According to the researchers, the results of the experiments show that our reading comprehension is changing as it is becoming more typical to read information on a digital platform. Our thought processes may slowly be evolving so that we will have to make an effort to look at the bigger picture.

So what does that mean for PR? Even though communications professionals will likely still make use of digital tools, the study shows the key is to try and make digital audiences think more abstractly. When writing an article that is going to be consumed via screen, try to challenge yourself to put in context which will help readers think critically along with the facts of the story.

Advice for new PR and communications graduates

It’s almost unavoidable on social media this month. Tons of photos happy college graduates in caps and gowns are filling your feed.

But what kind of future awaits these new job seekers, especially those new grads looking to go into PR?PR graduates

In 2013, PR Daily published this advice for PR and communications graduates, and while much of it is still sound, we at Wellons Communications wanted to provide an update.

Here’s our take on what today’s PR graduates should know.

Writing is key.

In today’s media landscape, it’s easy to discount the old-fashioned pen and paper and chase the next social media craze. And while social media is certainly an important tool today, we agree with PR Daily here: Writing skills are essential.

Whether you’re crafting a news release, media pitch, award application, email—or yes, even web copy, a Facebook post or tweet—it’s all about being able to effectively put your ideas into words.

Agency life is a great way to gain experience.

Again, this is solid advice from PR Daily. Working in an agency gives you the opportunity to build skills in a way working for a client doesn’t always. You get to be a jack of all trades, becoming a pro at working with media, crafting social posts, planning and running events and communicating with clients.

You also have to learn to be organized and to juggle multiple projects on varied topics—all skills that will transfer to a variety of fields and positions.

Your online presence matters.

When employers look at your résumé, you want to jump off the page. One way to add depth to your job applications is to build an online portfolio. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but this is one way to share more about your style and personality with employers. Be sure to include a short summary of your work and professional interests, a link to your résumé and links to work you’ve done in internships or classes. Also, don’t forget to update this so you can be ready when the next opportunity comes.

And while you’re working on your online persona, now is a great time to give yourself a social media makeover. As fun as it is for you to live tweet The Bachelor or the NBA finals, employers might not be as interested. Have fun, but add your voice to industry topics. Also, check to make sure your privacy settings are where you want them to be—or just remove any materials you wouldn’t want a potential employer to see.

You don’t know everything.

You’re young, you’re excited and you have so many ideas. It’s hard not to get cocky about your job prospects. But just like when you went from being a senior in high school to a freshman in college, you’re the low man on the totem pole again.

Don’t expect to be in your dream position right away. Nearly everyone has to start from the bottom and work their way up. Also, the job world might be different than your college classes. The best way to overcome it is to stay positive, work hard and try to soak in as much as possible. You might not know everything now, but you can learn more each day.

Good luck out there, graduates!

Council of 101 Hosts Festival of Trees Media Preview

The 29th Annual Festival of Trees took place at the Orlando Museum of Art. We have had the pleasure of working with Council of 101 for several years, and it was an honor to organize their media preview kicking off the 2015 Festival of Trees event.

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A media preview is beneficial to any business. It can offer a promotional boost in advance of an event opening or product launch, and it gives you the opportunity to spotlight your unique angles for an audience that is equipped to spread the word far and wide.

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Media events rely on having not only the proper contacts, but the right approach. A specific structure is expected for a successful media event as well. We pride ourselves on our ability to help you put your best foot forward for the most appropriate audience.

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Many thanks to the media guests in attendance, and kudos to Council of 101 for another enchanting display! The organization has raised over $6.5 million dollars benefiting the arts, children’s programs, and the museum.

Why You Need Reviews

In an age where consumers turn to social media and the internet for so much of their buying needs, reviews are more popular than ever. Reviews bring credibility to your business. Whether it’s a book, a product or a restaurant, consumers want to buy something they can trust. According to Marketing Land, when customers see positive recommendations, they’re more likely to buy it. Reviews can help erase any doubts of potential customers, and bring peace of mind with a purchase.

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Source: Business 2 Community

Besides the obvious benefit to consumers, reviews can help improve social media for a business by generating content.

Perhaps most importantly, from a business perspective, the word of mouth marketing effort will increase sales. As the graph above shows, reading reviews influences buyer decision. Many consumers read reviews before making purchasing decision. Reviews lead to more sales.

has-reading-online-reviews-impacted-your buying decision
Source: Marketing Land

Turn to a team that knows how to get reviews in digital and traditional media, Wellons Communications.

Binge Watching: A Sign of Changing Media Times

We’ve all done it. Watched hours on end of a show discovered on Netflix that we’re obsessed with and we need to know what happens next.

binge watching

Mornings turn into evenings, which turning into mornings again. Another day spent streaming.

Ah yes, this is now the modern-day practice for the younger crowd who typically don’t work full time and have varying schedules with classes.

Now that summer is over, will people stop their streaming habits?

Not likely.

This trend in streaming and quickly digesting television shows and movies also points to our cultural demand to have information at our fingertips at all times. Is this a new challenge for marketers across all channels?

Most definitely.

American teens spend 55% of their viewing time on tablets, laptops and smartphones. In contrast, adults age 45 and over spend half their time viewing via regular TVs.Viewing

Video on demand subscription services are growing too, with 87% of people subscribing to Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Go or HBO Now.

Streaming is now the norm, over traditional show viewing such as cable television, because people don’t have to wait a week or a season to find out what happened to a beloved character on their favorite show.

And when you’re done with one show, you can immediately start with the next.

All you have to do is click “play” or let the countdown end.

With every form of entertainment at our disposal 24/7, individuals have become their own editors for entertainment and news. It’s not likely to end anytime soon.

netflix

Domino’s: Using digital and social media to change the way we order pizza

Domino’s latest ad has the usual big brand flair of celebrities, bright colors and social media. Richard Sherman tweets a pizza emoji, Eva Longoria orders a pizza from her TV remote, Sarah Hyland texts the pizza emoji to place her order and Clark Gregg orders with his smartwatch. In short, Domino’s wants to change the way we order pizza.

dominos logo

While fans have been able to order via phone and through Domino’s website for some time, they can now order through Twitter, Samsung Smart TV, Pebble or Android Wear smartwatch apps, the Ford SYNC AppLink and through voice ordering via a smartphone. Even the pizza emoji can be texted to DPIZZA (374992) to complete an “Easy Order.”

Pizza emoji

This marketing move, coined as “AnyWare” ordering is set to rival Pizza Hut, who has more digital awareness than Domino’s. These new ordering capabilities have secured Domino’s brand association with smartphones and social media ordering.

This new form of ordering is set to take a hold on brands everywhere. The average millennial checks their mobile device 43 times per day. Millenials also value brands that have positive social interactions. These statistics are growing by the day, and with Domino’s new way of ordering pizza, the use of social media and digital media devices is sure to continue to rise.