erinism: #socialmedia and other explorations

Run, don’t walk, to your local bookstore…

Posted in social media,Uncategorized by Erin on October 29, 2009
Tags: , ,

For my next blog post, I was planning on writing about monitoring messaging versus controlling messaging.  Either that, or why using only 140 characters may be good practice for both PR pros and journalists alike (and ways to increase RTs and @mentions).

But scratch that.  After attending an invite-only Social Darwinism panel discussion on Monday, I’ve changed my mind.  Among the panel participants were Paul Argenti and Courtney Barnes, coauthors of the new book, “Digital Strategies for Powerful Corporate Communications.”

Digital Strategies for Powerful Corporate Communications


It was a great event—in the great venue of the 50th floor of the McGraw-Hill Companies building—and although I have yet to read the book for which the event was intended, as soon as I finish this post I am heading straight to Barnes & Noble.  Having conversed with Mr. Argenti via Twitter and email, he is truly an expert in corporate communications of all sorts, and modest at that.

I encourage you all to check out the #digistrat feed on Twitter to gain more insight; here are my top ten highlights of the interactive panel (straight from my Twitter account):

“Companies used to control…companies used to target. Those days are over.” @paulargenti at #digistrat

“Use social media as a means to change the nature of journalism” @johnabyrne at #digistrat

“Create convo & relationships w/ the thought that it can be = or more than = value to the reader” @johnabyrne at #digistrat

“The nature of search–google–is becoming ‘social search’…the function of google is now integrated” @courtneymbarnes at #digistrat

“People are at this very min talking abt us…with or without us. People trust info from other people like themselves” @jnjcomm at #digistrat

“Allow ppl to cmt…what do u do with it? Realize the audience can talk back–and provide info” @jnjcomm at #digistrat

“Elmnts like search, vids, wbcsts, etc r now part of ur arsenal. Take advantage bc others will. Its the only way 2 b successful” #digistrat

Orgs r usually geared twd 1way comm. Socmed moves twd r’ships. Move w authority, b flexible, talk in open & unrestricted way #digistrat

Measurement of ROI is difficult. How do u measure loyalty and participation? #digistrat

Ask urself – what are we trying to acheive w an integrated approach? Its all abt goals, ppl! #digistrat

For Pete’s sake–order it now!


Who owns the social media real estate?

Posted in marketing,public relations,social media by Erin on October 19, 2009

It seems that everyone is a self-proclaimed “social media expert.”  (Nevermind that the field is far too premature to be dubbing experts or gurus, especially those who are self-proclaimed. Did you major in it? Did you go to graduate school for it? This is an entirely different topic, I digress.)  Where do these “experts” come from?  That is, are they marketers, or do they have a public relations background?

It seems that both marketing and PR pros fancy themselves the owners of the social media real estate.  Though, in reality, who should win the social media debate?

Marketing Wisdom from

Marketing Wisdom from

Marketers are in charge of making sure individuals (and communities) are informed (persuaded) that their needs and wants can be satisfied by their employers’ or clients’ products.  Social media, yes, in fact involves communities and informing (persuading) their members.

Meanwhile, public relations professionals manage the communication between an organization and its publics. Surprise, surprise, social media does that, too.

Ultimately, both marketing and public relations exist to increase exposure of a company, and therefore, increase sales.  I think we can all agree that social media increases exposure (all while cutting out the middle man—the media).

Instead of looking at it as a marketing versus PR contest, perhaps we should first look at social



media and move outward.

At its core (and my favorite aspect of it) social media blurs the lines between marketing, public relations, and customer service.  It forces companies to be transparent, while giving consumers a voice.  This makes it necessary for each part to have a hand in social media and the strategy thereof.

Social media cannot merely be marketing; consumers are smart enough now to see through the fluff.

Social media cannot just encompass messaging and media hits; it needs more one-on-one interaction.

Social media cannot only reply to consumer complaints (or questions); there needs to be more motivation to partake in their social community.

If social media must encompass all of these aspects, then who are the right people to run it?  Well, until there are fully integrated social media education programs training actual experts, ideally, there would be a separate social media department linking marketing and public relations.

Social media needs to be considered in both the marketing and PR strategies.  The people within the social media department would not only run the social media communities, but also consult for and with marketing and PR on their strategies.  Ideally, a social media department would be a mix of both marketing and PR pros, and the right mix, of course, highly depends on the organization, the clients they serve, their goals, etc.

Do you agree?  Disagree?  I would love to hear other viewpoints.

A Guide: Finding a Job on Twitter

Posted in jobs,social media by Erin on October 7, 2009
Tags: , , ,

You’re in your mid-twenties and out of work. Instead of hitting the classifieds or even traditional job search websites, do as the Gen Y-ers do: use social media to your advantage.

When the rate of unemployment is 9.8 percent, it can be frustrating trying to find a job and having all your leads escort you to a dead end. However, in today’s real-time world of immediate updates and instant gratification, it’s easy to use social media to do anything, even find a job.

Here are my five steps to finding a job via Twitter.

1. Personal Branding

Everyone knows Kashi is all about tasty, natural foods and Vogue is the face of luxury. But who are you? What do you represent? If you’re a PR pro, tweet about things happening in the PR, marketing, and journalism industries, providing links to case studies and news articles. In the healthcare industry? Tweet about the insurance debate and the H1N1 virus.

2. TweetBeep Alerts

Much like Google Alerts, TweetBeep allows you to set up personalized keywords so you don’t have to constantly search Twitter. It scours all Twitter updates for tweets containing your keyword(s). Need an example? I set up an alert for the keywords “pr” and “hiring”—and I receive several emails per day listing tweets with links bringing me directly to appropriate job listings. (Of course, if you only want, say, one email per day, you can change your settings accordingly.)

3. Relationship Building

One of my absolute favorite things about Twitter is the daily interaction. It’s important to not just simply post links—you need to interact with your followers! Retweet their links, comment on their blogs, and, heck, @mention them to see how their workday is going. Doing so builds rapport and relationships organically. That said, don’t go overboard. If they’ve never mentioned their son or daughter to you, or their favored birth control methods to you, doing so will not only get you unfollowed, but also a possible restraining order.

4. Attending Tweetups

It’s one thing to maintain a relationship on Twitter or through email, but converting that affinity to real life is key. It will make your online relationship that much stronger. Tweetups are also great networking opportunities with people you don’t already know. Recently, I attended #SMPR (a group of NYC PR and social media pros) and made a few imperative contacts. One of those contacts referred me to her firm’s human resources department, and the next day I had a call for an interview.

5. In Real Life Translation

I already touched on this in regards to attending Tweetups, but it’s an important point to keep in mind. No matter how great you may seem on Twitter (or on paper), if you can’t demonstrate that same personal brand you worked so hard to create during an in-person interview, it’ll do you no good. If you’re transparent behind the screen (be yourself!), you should have no problem matching that brand in real life. (Please note: this does not mean oversharing on Twitter—we do NOT need to know about your most recent bowel movements or your relationship problems. Save that for Facebook.)

Following these five steps will not guarantee you to land your unrealistic dream job, but it should make the hunt for your next position a little less painful.

What do you think? Any others you would add?