November 24, 2017

Helping PR pros make smarter decisions

Radio Roundtable: Reply All mishap, Google+, and Walmart goes local on Facebook

Radio Roundtable: Reply All mishap, Google+, and Walmart goes local on Facebook

This week, Sarah Santucci joined me on the Roundtable to discuss how *not* to conduct blogger outreach (The Bloggess Edition); Google+ and an engineer’s manifesto, and WalMart’s move to use Facebook to promote local deals.

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This week’s show is 33 minutes long.

  • First, Sarah and I discuss the dust-up surrounding a series of exchanges between popular blogger The Bloggess and a PR firm. The PR firm appears to have created for us a textbook case of how not to conduct blogger outreach: first, an off-topic pitch for the blog (bad research), which led to a characteristically snarky response from the blogger. A terse email response from the PR rep, followed by a “reply all” from a company VP calling the blogger a Bad Word. The reply all, of course, went to the blogger too. Sarah and I dissect what went wrong here, and ask why these mistakes are still being made. I note that Gini Dietrich posted a great rundown of the issue on Spin Sucks, which makes a number of excellent points. Sarah adds a sidebar that the tendency of Internet audiences to “go all vigilante” is a bit disconcerting.
  • Next, we look at the rapid…plateauing…of Google+. After making massive gains after exiting beta, Google+ traffic is down. By 1269%. I’m not a math person, but that seems like a lot. So will Google+ be able to be more than a niche product used by a subset of people unhappy with Facebook? A Google engineer by the name of Steve Yegge has some strong opinions on the issue, which he–apparently inadvertently–shared with the public instead of just internally at Google. The Jerry Maguire-style manifesto examines why Google is struggling with the social concept, and makes some very insightful observations about Facebook along the way. (My favorite of his observations about FB: “There are hundreds or maybe thousands of different high-quality time sinks available, so there’s something there for everyone.”) Sarah notes that after gnashing her teeth to get a Google+ invite, she now never goes there.
  • Finally, we look at a new program being launched by Walmart in conjunction with Facebook. Walmart soon will be launching “store-level messaging” through a Facebook app, making local deals available to shoppers. Sarah says this has a Groupon/Living Social feel to it, in a good way. Local deals for local retailers make sense. And with the world’s largest retailer using the most popular social network, both Facebook and Walmart stand to benefit if this works out well.
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About The Author

Jennifer Zingsheim Phillips is the founder of 4L Strategies, and has worked in communications and public affairs for just over 20 years. Her background includes work in politics, government, lobbying, public affairs PR work, content creation, and digital and social communications and media analysis.

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