Many have labeled the New York Jet’s acquisition of Tim Tebow as a P.R. move for the team. While the intentions behind the move are up for debate, one thing is for certain; Tebow has had a profound effect on Jets’ P.R., and in particular, its social media presence. Tebow was the most talked about quarterback across the entire N.F.L. on social media during the month of October, well ahead of his teammate and starting quarterback for the New York Jets, Mark Sanchez. Overall, Tebow drove more than half (61%) of New York Jets social media conversations in October propelling them to be the sixth most discussed team, despite a 3-5 record.
– Aaron Auscavitch
We know that an Olympic Gold medal can be worth millions of dollars in sponsorships for an Olympic athlete. Sponsors are already lining up to offer millions of dollars in sponsorships to Gold Medal winners like US gymnast Gabby Douglas and swimmer Missy Franklin. But what is the value of an Olympic sponsorship (or any major event) for a corporation?
Having just spent countless hours holed up in a “listening room” analyzing earned media coverage for a tier one Olympic sponsor, we learned quite a bit about what adds and detracts from an Olympic (or any major) sponsorship. One of the first things we discovered was not to underestimate how sponsorship agreements may handcuff a company’s PR and Marketing team. Stories and photos we found that had great mentions for our clients often could not be “shared” – tweeted or put on Facebook or corporate websites. Limitations included geographic restrictions, which are difficult to manage in a global media environment, as well as the incidental inclusion of non-sponsored athletes or teams in the story/photo/video.
These rules are in place to protect the value of the sponsorship, but seem to be rooted in the history of paid media – which is slow, geographically-bound and fully controlled. I have an enhanced respect for sponsors and their diligence in staying true to athlete agreements and the IOC while doggedly remaining engaged and proactive in a fast-paced, global, semi-controlled earned media environment.
There’s a lot of red tape – often cut vertically – when it comes to major event sponsorships. CommPro recently asked if I would share some of my thoughts and impressions in a casual Google+ Hanghout event they organized and recorded. You can view it here: http://www.commpro.biz/champions-of-imc/2012-olympic-games-what-is-the-value-of-a-corporate-sponsorship/
Cision is getting ready to publish its 2011 Social Journalism Study across four European markets (UK, Germany, Sweden and Finland). The study, carried out in partnership with Canterbury Christ Church University, surveyed 1,560 journalists about their use and perceptions of social media. The results have produced exciting findings so we are sharing some of the key points ahead of the report’s publication.
Social media is a missed opportunity for PR professionals
Journalists are social creatures. 71% use social media sites to network and to source stories – the most popular are social networking sites (40%), blogs (36%) and microblogs (31%). PR professionals, however, are not contacting journalists through social media, with only 14% of respondents being contacted on social networking sites and 10% on microblogs like Twitter. This is a missed opportunity for PR professionals to connect with journalists in one of their key communication channels.
Scoff at your peril: why Wikipedia should matter to PR
Information depositories like Wikipedia are the most popular social media tool, with 76% of journalists across the four tracked markets making use of them every week. More importantly, information depositories are being used to verify stories. This is especially true in Germany and Finland where 54% and 63% of journalists (respectively) authenticate stories in this way. If that doesn’t have you running to check your organisation’s Wikipedia page, then maybe knowing that 68% of German journalists have sourced stories from these sites will get you moving.
In addition to information depositories, 60% of journalists use corporate websites to verify a story, yet traditional news sources (55%), social networking sites (19%) and blogs (15%) are also used. So while you are sending out that press release via e-mail or fax, you will also need to make sure that your organization’s Wikipedia page, Facebook page, website, etc., all reflect the latest news.
Journalists use social media tools to engage with their audiences, too.
Most journalists agree that social media tools help them engage with their audiences better (73%), and three-quarters use social media to publish, promote and distribute their work. Chances are that as a PR professional you are also using social media to engage with your end consumer.
Indeed, there is a fairly good chance that PR practitioners and their key journalists are trying to reach the same social media group. This may just seem like a common interest that you can talk about on all those telephone calls, but it is also a great opportunity. Effective engagement with that shared audience will help to build interest in your organization and increase chatter. Journalists want to report on the topics of interest to their core audience, so an increase in chatter about your organization is likely to increase the attention journalists pay you.
These are just a few of our thoughts about the study’s findings, and there is certainly an awful lot more to learn. The most important point is that journalists view social media as one of their tools and, as a PR professional, you might be missing a trick if you are not joining them.
We’ll let you know when the full study for the four markets is published, but Cision has already published its 2011 Social Journalism Study for the UK – feel free to download it here.
Even though it is still in BETA testing, some are already billing Google+ as a Facebook killer. While it’s much too early to declare any clear victories, people are definitely getting very excited about Google+ (whether it will ultimately be the king of social media remains to be seen). At least for now, it appears that Google+ is a real contender, as it was just recently announced that the new platform had an estimated 10 million users and could rapidly reach 20 million by this weekend. With all of the hype surrounding Google+ you’ve got to wonder; how has Facebook’s reputation been fairing amidst all this media attention on Google+?
The results actually may surprise you.
Since the beginning of the month, the two goliath’s have been pretty much neck and neck when it comes to simply generating coverage. Google’s newest feature hasn’t resulted in an increase in media coverage. In fact, in terms of who has achieved the highest peak in volume, the nod so far goes to Facebook. An announcement during the first week of July surrounding the launch of Facebook Video Calls and Group Chat features (to combat features offered in Google+) managed to propel them past Google.
Still, Google has managed to maintain a higher quality of coverage, as its Average Impact Score so far in July sits at +25% compared to +23% for Facebook. Extensive mentions of Google+’s features and placement of Google+ in headlines has kept Google ahead, albeit slightly.
It will be interesting to see in the coming weeks and months however, as Google+ climbs in popularity, if Facebook will be able to keep pace with the Google+ train.
This story is likely to run for a little while longer, but the closure of the News of the World is a good place to pause. The arrest today of Andy Coulson will help to drive this story through the weekend, while the UK opposition party’s continuing questioning of the relationship between David Cameron and News International, the likely government inquests, continuing police investigations and the upcoming government decision on whether News International will be allowed to purchase BSkyB will continue generating interest for some time to come.
When I think about Google’s earned media coverage, I’m not initially inclined to think about their products or their innovation, which is of course what has made them such a giant to begin with. For me, this coverage just doesn’t stand out. After going through their content I’m left with the perception that most of their coverage either concerns a major investment they’ve just made, or an increase in their revenue etc…
Interestingly enough if you take a look at the share of coverage Google receives, less than 25% of its content is actually in relation to stakeholder relations or financial mentions according to the Cision Index. While it isn’t an overwhelming amount, this segment of coverage is more memorable than any other type of coverage they receive.
Simply put, Financial and Stakeholder related news is more prominent than other type of coverage for Google. This type of news is discussed more extensively, exclusively, more often in a headline, more often visually and more often in the lead of an article compared to overall averages for Google. In fact, the Average Impact Score for Financial and Stakeholder related content is +33%, compared to +22% for Google’s overall average.
So while Financial and Stakeholder related news isn’t featured nearly as frequently as other types of coverage, when it does get discussed it is often much more prominent than the rest of their coverage, making it more memorable.
Conversation around Apple’s big iCloud announcement was certainly a huge media focus this week. One of my favorite quotes I’ve read about the story comes from the Washington Post: “Steve Jobs, who delivered personal computing to the rest of us, is now doing more through the iCloud to get rid of personal computing than anyone.”
In many ways, the cloud is old news, as devices with an Android operating system have actually been more cloud-friendly than Apple’s up until now. A media analyst at Gartner said in the New York Times: “Yes, Google and Amazon get to say that they were first….Apple’s service was superior.”
Authoritative quotes like these help journalists shape technology stories without sounding preachy. And with Apple being perceived as an innovator, there’s always a story to tell. That’s a major reason why Apple consistently has more analyst quotes than other major tech and media companies in the Cision Index.
Check out the graph above from January to May 2011. Even when Steve Jobs isn’t telling Apple’s story, the media are through analysts quotes!
In a recent infographic posted here on the Index, I mentioned that without any large-scale, negative stories it would be difficult for any other brand to impact more potential impressions positively than Facebook does. Well, I might have spoken too soon.
Last week Facebook admitted to hiring a PR agency in an attempt to smear Google. Yes, the situation is as terrible as it sounds and the media did not sugarcoat the situation one bit. In fact, you didn’t even have to read further than the headline to get a sense of what had happened, as headlines surrounding the story were to the point and enough to make you cringe; “Facebook Hired Ex-Reporters To Smear Google” and even “Facebook Busted in Clumsy Smear Attempt on Google”. All coverage surrounding this story contained a (negative) Facebook placement in the headline.
What was the extent of the damage? Last week Facebook was able to positively impact more than 271 million people, according to the Cision Index. However, this story alone negatively impacted 99 million.
Perhaps the only positive in all of this came when Facebook admitted wrong doing in a prepared statement released last week, well – sort of. “The issues are serious and we should have presented them in a serious and transparent way”, read part of the statement.
All indications are that this story has lost traction since it erupted. Had Facebook denied any involvement or wrongdoing initially, there is no telling as to how much uglier it could have gotten for Facebook.
Last week Google announced that it would invest another $100 Million in funding to Shepherds Flat Wind Farm of Oregon, bringing their total investment to approximately $350 Million. While the money invested is certainly something to sink your teeth into, the coverage generated from this is nothing to glance past either.
Below is a graphic illustrating how much coverage the investment generated from April 22-28. Perhaps most interesting out of all of these numbers; coverage surrounding the $100 million dollar investment mentioned Google 34% more compared to other Google news.
Had I heard four or five years ago that the President of the United States would someday be launching his or her re-election campaign on Facebook, I can only imagine how hysterical my reaction might have been. However by now launching a political campaign on Facebook, or any other social media platform for that matter, is nothing new.
Earlier this month President Obama officially announced his bid for re-election in 2012 and one of the first platforms he used for this was Facebook. This move has subsequently drawn attention from media outlets for the last several weeks, generating coverage not only for Obama’s re-election campaign but also for Facebook.
Facebook doesn’t need help generating coverage; it is consistently among the leaders in overall volume along with potential and realized audience figures within the Cision Index.
What is particularly interesting from our point of view is that across all of the topics driving Facebook coverage, Obama’s re-election campaign has been a consistent contributor, driving ten percent of Facebook’s coverage so far in April.
While ten percent may not seem like a lot, relative to the amount of coverage a brand like Facebook generates, it actually is rather impressive.