Wednesday, November 14, 2007

PR 2.0 :: Strategies for the Global Era

Get ready. What I’m about to share will save you a lot of time. If you’re in one of my classes or a close business associate, you know I’m very pumped following the Center for Communication’s recent "Global PR" seminar, attended by more than 200 students and media professionals from throughout the tri-state area.

Overall, Fall 07 has been a professional development extravaganza! I always revel in how much NYC has to offer. Word to the wise, soak up all you can—and never think you’re too experienced to learn something new. You’ll find leadership is cultivated by honing your skills over the years.

CenCom’s Global PR Panelists said many “traditional ad folks” don't just try stuff … they evaluate and wait. The world is changing very fast and that’s what makes the integrated marketing communications arena so exciting! Speakers encouraged us all to rev up our game in order to get results in today’s splintered marketspace. PR pros are often known for our ability to maximize resources and act fast.

Everyone was encouraged to develop new niches and create unique connections. Just like Craig’s List and Ebay have siphoned off business once the domain of newspaper classifieds! There are tremendous gaps opening up, creating new communications models. Panelists challenged the audience to own online periodicals with journalistic integrity and create new understandings and relay non-traditional points of view. In sum, original content is queen and can definitely trump what was once king (traditional media)!

And, PR pros are no longer only dealing with the media. They’re communications specialists who tell stories—and help everyone in their organizations tell compelling stories that resonate in the minds, hearts and heads of communities. These communities range from important niche markets with hundreds of citizens to global communities with a vast, diverse network of millions that span a few continents.

Mike Moran wisely encourages us to “do it wrong quick … as we build your capital and credibility” on the web (you’ll learn more about him later). Act on what follows and you’ll be surprised how you can optimize results, project responses and rewards!

Personal Marketing & Professional Development Tips

> For full speaker and moderator bios, visit

> See recommended reading list at end of this post (one is a free download)

> Under the direction of Catherine Williams, the Center for Communication is an independent media forum that offers excellent panels on a wide range of topics

> Whether you’re 16 or 60, update your bio with new interests, promotions, new projects and other newsy tidbits

> Check out the moderator’s award-winning blog, then start your own! It’s never too soon to build your own unique network of power and influence. You two can become an industry leader!

Peter Himler (PH), Founder & Principle, Flatiron Communications, moderated the Global PR panel and did a great job (FYI, he’s also President of PCNY/Publicity Club of New York. He and I go way back to our days at Hill and Knowlton; we knew each other before we had kids :) While our sons are now teenagers, in college and young working professionals – we’ve kept in touch. Always know the power of your network and allow those you know to expand your circles of connectivity. Today’s colleague can be a future client or new business referral.

Okay, here’s what you’ve been waiting for … Millynneum Insight (MI) and panelists’ perspectives on the digital world …

Nicco Mele (NM)

> Founder of and creator of’s authentic celebrity blog (whatever you may think of Rosie O’Donnell, check out her blog which is fantastic); the beauty of it is that Rosie actually writes and uploads info herself, making her creativity and unique perspective shine through—rule #1 in the blogosphere

> Internet strategist for Howard Dean’s Presidential campaign

> Due to various forces, the industry has changed from a traditional to digital world

> You may treasure old techniques (read magazine or newspaper placements), but as a PR professional, you must figure out when, where and how select audiences want to be reached, and where they are migrating to

> Today’s tech tools offer individuals the luxury to be publishers, advertisers and advocates

> Technology redistributes power … he encourages anyone with a computer, especially a communications major, to “take that power and run with it!”

> It’s more difficult for PR pros to succeed, because the media has lost some control in this age of “citizen journalists”

> Always listen and be mindful of where there’s energy and excitement on the web and particularly in the blogosphere

> Today’s conversations and the marketing that supports them are like a “fast-moving train”

> Be very curious … try things … it’s such a new space

> Experiment with videos and blogs while you’re a student, begin to build your skills and resources; those skills can be useful to a potential employer

> There aren’t established career routes or professions … you can take a circuitous route

> New channels of communication are being created on a daily basis

> Communications professionals must manage and monitor these “virtual communities”

> “Our varieties of media experience are radically fragmented” (what a great quote); NM stressed that in years past, an audience of 200 would share readership / viewership of certain media (think New York Times or Nightline). Today, he estimates you can’t find one media outlet shared by a group of 200 individuals.

> According to NM, social networking is about mapping offline and personal relationships

Mike Moran (MM)

> Dubbing himself the “resident propeller head,” Mike is a former IBM engineer

> Author, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes Old Marketing Rules

> Calls the web the best direct marketing tool full of opportunities if you pay attention and take note of audience responses

> Like the title of his book, Mike encourages marketers to “do it wrong quickly”

> Says traditional ad folks are “risk adverse” … scheduling meetings on end

> Encouraged audience to lower their fear factor – and just do something!

> Companies are trying things at a very rapid pace

> The big winners are usually those that get to market first with an idea

> Always have a feedback loop so you can fine-tune your campaign

> In the old days, when I used to work at IBM, it used to be “focus groups”

> Now, the web has “democratized” things … information is out there for the taking, without much expense

> You can obtain nearly free market research to help you, via a survey, using tools such as (one of many free or low cost online survey tools)

> There used to be a few media voices … now you don’t have to be a big company to have a voice!

> Consultants and professionals have their own networks, via social networking sites like—it makes total sense

> “Before, we consumed stories, now we consume a lot smaller stories, which results in the business of PR expanding enormously!”

> Everyone is now searching for “who understands my problem, my point of view”

> It’s incumbent on PR professionals to write helpful content that helps people solve problems

> PR pros have to know how to tell stories and connect the dots

> Told everyone to keep trying, experiment and persevere

> Keep iterating, trying, educate your audiences

> Always have a story to tell

> Think about “what blows you shirt off” … carve out a niche … know and share all you can about that subject

> Now that we’re in an election season, MM encourages students and professionals to look at the “selling techniques” of candidates

> It’s an “artificial” arena where they have to make the sale now and there is one clear winner … there’s a lot of desperation, thus, it’s the perfect incubator for communications techniques – fascinating stuff!

Cuban, Sorkin & Fast Reaction

:: Backstory ::

For example, here’s a quick story to put these thoughts in perspective and show the power of blogs and the world of citizen journalists. PH shared a story about a not so favorable article written about Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban by Andrew Mark Sorkin, mergers and acquisitions editor of the New York Times.

PH saw the story at about 7 AM one morning and fired of a quick email to Cuban to alert him. According to PH, within 30 minutes, Cuban had posted the entire unedited transcript of the interview on his blog,, complete with comments from his perspective under the headline “Why Sorkin’s Story Was Wrong.” Mark Cuban has been known to be a maverick and a man of fast action. Take note of his business acumen, and use the power of the click to your benefit.

MI: the business model is no longer brick and mortar … it’s click and shorter info blurbs to meet the needs of today’s info age consumers. That’s the power of the blogosphere. That’s the power “You Too” can leverage on behalf of your blog, your business or your clients! Blogs provide an individual or collective voice for an issue, in a new medium whereby you can bypass the filter of journalists and speak directly to consumers. All agree, these are exciting times! Now, back to business.

Michelle Horowitz (MH)

> Vice President, Corporate Development, PR Newswire

> MH explains PR Newswire has expanded their repertoire to include much more than just news distribution. The company has evolved over the past 50 years to meet the demands of the fast-changing communications profession

> Armed with an MBA, MH has a strength in emerging technologies and works directly with the CEO of PR Newswire on ways to grow the business

> She explains, PR is a rapidly changing field and her organization must “constantly work to provide better tools”

> Text, video, photography … wherever info wants to flow … if it’s Times Square then that’s where PR Newswire and other nimble organizations will be

> MH suggests PR professionals must always do research to determine bloggers, for example are “who they say they are”

> “Due to the transparency of the web, you will eventually get caught!”

> While there is “no delete” button on the web, MH cautions against AstroTurfing (see below) and other attempts to “veil” conversations

> She also advices students to selectively study their favorite websites and bloggers

> Always be on the lookout for how you could make the conversations more authentic

> Also, pay attention to solutions offered to corporate challenges

> She cited Marriott as a CEO blogger/website that does an honest job, not veiled as a senior executive who is not crafting his own dialogues with consumers or investors

> Start asking why, why, why … and start to answer those why’s with responses!

Whole Foods’ John Mackey

:: Backstory ::

> MH shared Whole Foods’ CEO John Mackey’s foray into the blogosphere which purportedly affected the stock price of Wild Oats Market, a company it sought to acquire this summer

> Mackey pretended to be someone else in his online conversations, a big “no no” in the age of transparency and authenticity

> To form your opinion, visit

MI editorial note: Whole Foods is among this publisher’s favorite haunts in NYC! I often stop into these savory food markets during my long walks to and from Brooklyn. Overall favorite: 59th Street/Columbus Circle; New favorite: Houston Street, Lower East Side; Presentation … A+; Quality of Food … A+; Associates’ Attitude & Helpfulness … A+; Overall grade: A+.

Moral of the backstory: Despite web drama, CEO or Federal Trade Commission (FTC) actions – if you focus on your core product (fresh food) and customer service (I always get smiles), then your customers “stick” to your site. In this case, a website OR brick and mortar store!

David Bradfield (DB)

> Senior Vice President and Partner Fleishman-Hillard (F-H) New York

> Know this: there is a “social media function” at leading agencies

> He estimates that nearly 40% of time at F-H and other firms is spent researching clients, competitors and monitoring “conversations on the web”

> “The game has changed and the sandbox continues to shrink”

> You must retain a “sense of the digital culture” … “determine and influence who is driving the conversation” … “we’re only at the tip of the iceberg … PR pros can help determine what’s underneath it”

> F-H was a founding partner of WOMMA, the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (below)

> Depending on your training, experience and mindset … agencies and professionals have varied ways of looking at interactive, advertising, PR and marketing … as well as how all industries impact and intersect with each other

> If you can figure out a way to promote tech in your organization, along with a clear understanding of interactive vehicles and PR capabilities, you have a leg up on the competition

> “With ad people, it’s all about control. PR people are on the ‘uncontrolled side.’ It’s raw, you can reach people on an innate level … help craft the stories … tell stories in new ways … create digital communities and channels … become social media experts.”

> DB encouraged audience to become subject matter experts and thought leaders, working behind the scene to impact and influence

> Quoting a F-H colleague, DB says, “the riches are in the niches!”

> Now, with communications, there is a layering strategy, allowing for different points of few

> The old model offered a narrow point of view, told via select outlets – now there are multiple ways to deliver your message, resulting in a lot of excitement!

> The goal is to make clients more relevant; connect to people differently

> And, remember to always leverage your “branded assets”

Dell Computers & The Buzz Machine

:: Backstory ::

> PH relayed a story about Jeff Jarvis, publisher of Buzz Machine and his displeasure a few years back with Dell Computers

> Due to Jeff’s loyal following, his blog traffic created a lot of buzz, resulting in a near customer service crisis for Michael Dell and his computer company

Check out Jeff’s fantastic blog

> Then fast forward to this year, and see how “relationships” can bear fruit

> Supposedly, Dell is contributing a chapter to Jeff’s forthcoming book

> Hence the power of PR, buzz and the brilliance of sharing your point of view!

> Tip, stick to the facts and don’t fabricate

> Pay close attention to the About Me | Disclosures section of Buzz Machine; it show’s Jeff’s connection to sound journalism tenets—which are always in style, much like the AP Stylebook!

Naptime @ Comcast

:: Backstory ::

Now this one is funny, if you haven’t heard about it. A once-obscure cable repairman (now a celeb) working for Philadelphia’s Comcast Cable, tries to fix a computer problem … but inadvertently falls asleep.

Mistake. The world is 24/7; no time to sleep in the digital age.

The customer snaps a photo, it’s on You Tube, and there are more than 2 million downloads, resulting in a mini customer service issue for Comcast in Summer 06.

Embarassing, yes. Free publicity, yes. Consumers decide. But, as PR pros, we must craft the message, or help manage the fallout.

> PH notes that anyone now has these tools at their disposal.

Ernst & Young—First to Market … Risk and Reward

:: Backstory ::

Traditional Ernst & Young, recently revamped their standing with college grads, by being the first employer to establish a Facebook page, repositioning their perception as a stodgy accounting firm to “the” place to work. Since then, Motorola, AT&T and others have joined suit, but there’s nothing like being first.

Remember, first to market, usually reaps untold rewards!

Check out this glowing endorsement of their strategy from Steven Rothberg at “On balance, I believe that this is a brilliant move by E&Y. College students and other members of Gen Y reward employers who embrace transparency. This is a big step towards E&Y becoming more transparent. It also sends a powerful message to students that E&P is listening to their needs, wants, and desires. Recruiters who tell highly qualified candidates that they must apply through traditional channels will lose those candidates if those candidates want to connect through newer channels such as Facebook because those candidates have options and they know it.

Ernst & Young recruits where the college kids hang out—Facebook

© Los Angeles Business Journal

March, 2007

By Jabulani Leffall

A passive employee is only one bad workday away from becoming an active job applicant. Likewise, a tech-savvy college graduate is one job removed from a room at mom's and dad's.

Such was the thinking when Ernst & Young LLP shed the stodgy image often conferred on accountants and stepped into the uncharted realm of online social networking, becoming the first company to sponsor a page on specifically aimed at attracting young talent.

The firm wants to hire more than 5,000 interns and entry-level workers this year and so far, career strategy experts applaud the move.

"Good for Ernst & Young," said Kristen Fennelly, a recruiting consultant with Administaff Inc., a provider of outsourced human resource services. "It's fitting as old school approaches are long gone."

Ernst & Young's Facebook profile is a no-frills display complete with slideshows and video testimonials from evangelistic interns, various career tips and links to the firm's corporate sites. The firm's recruiters observe user activity and respond casually to visitors.

Nearly 6,000 users have signed up as "members" of the Ernst & Young page on Facebook, which claims that 85 percent of an estimated 8 million college students use its Web site.

While some see this as a good thing for businesses and job hounds, privacy remains an issue.

Companies can use these sites to weed out candidates, based on the content of their individual member profiles, warns Kristen Todd, career development adviser at USC's Marshall School of Business. "We try to tell employers that kids think of this as their private space and that both parties should keep that in mind when logging in to networking sites," she said.

To help temper these concerns, this spring Facebook and Jobster Inc. plan to launch a secured site enabling regular Facebook users to create more formal job seeker profiles that employers can access. Fox Interactive unit MySpace recently formed a similar partnership with

Meanwhile, Ernst & Young remains cautiously optimistic about tapping into social networking in general and Facebook in particular.

"We know (Facebook) is not a controlled environment, so we did lose a little sleep over pushing the envelope," said Dan Black, the firm's Americas director of campus recruiting. "But we've found the rewards have far outweighed the risks."

COPYRIGHT 2007 Gale Group

Tech Tools & Trade Secrets

The Big G … Google!

:: Backstory ::

> All panelists agreed that Google’s AdSense was about the best on the block to help make your website “sticky” and attract repeat customers/eyeballs

> Panelists indicated that there really isn’t a better deal out there, with a conversion cost of 45 cents to attract a qualified lead, as compared to about $10 for direct mail

> MM revealed Google has won the search engine war, making founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page billionaires with no ads, they did it all via “word of mouse”

> Learn, listen and lift their successful online marketing techniques!

> They approached things in a cool, different way … using a model that resonates with information economists

To Start a Blog



> Takes 10 minutes or less, voila, you have an internet presence

> And, it’s fun!

> Befriend other bloggers

> Make your site sticky

> Advocate for a cause you believe in

> Use “word of mouse” to spread the word!

To Enhance Your Blog

> NM recommends you spend about 2 hours, invest about $20 and buy a few Google keywords

Learn from the Masters

> MI (Lynne Scott Jackson, author of Millynneum Insight) recommends you invest in yourself, take the time to read everything Google has to offer

*Learn about Google Analytics

*Learn about Google AdSense

*Learn about Google Keywords

*Learn how Google Documents can expand capacity and create cache for your work team or “for impact” (nonprofit) organization

*Learn how Google Alerts can effortlessly alert you to what others are saying about you or client companies on the web (in PR you always have to stay ahead of the pack and keep tabs on what’s being said)

*Create an iGoogle homepage and effortlessly organize what you need to know

> Learn, earn … eventually, make millions!

Discipline & Direction

> Like MM, discipline yourself to blog everyday

> Your site is timely, you can change “the feedback” loop to real time

> MM even wrote portions of his new book online!

Why is Facebook in everyone’s face?

> Reaches 85% of the college audience

> Represents the coveted 18-24 consumer demographic

Why is important?

> Original blog search engine

> Tracking 111.7 million blogs

> Monitoring over 250 million pieces of tagged social media

Why make an

> Yahoo’s impressive search engine marketing tool

What’s a tag?

> A tag is a word that defines content

> Makes it easier for a search engine to trace

What makes so sweet?

> Social bookmarking tool that organizes networks and communities in a way that makes sense for you and your friends

What’s an SEO news release?

PH explained he recently did a SEO (search engine optimized) news release for a travel education/study abroad client. The beauty of this type of news release is that it is specifically developed to be found by journalists on the web. Chock full of “key word density,” the release is specifically developed to be found on Google and other search engines (yes Frank, Google isn’t the only game in town).

What’s on the horizon?

> Panel: video tags for blogs, allowing consumers to capture all the live video currently on the web … it’s the new frontier!

> According to MM, in about 2 years, there will be another technological revolution, allowing more visuals to be tagged, monitored and retrieved online

> NM predicts videogames will be bigger than music … “we’re poised to enter the golden age of videogames,” which currently offer a wide opportunity for product placements and the like (think

> MH says there will be a shift of customers who track more video and photos, as opposed to text; companies will become more adept at reaching consumers on the run, on their mobile phones and portable laptops than ever before!

Mine & Mind the conversation

> PH encourages PR pros to “mine” the conversation, just like you mine for data

> Further, MI encourages you to always create mind share and “mind your business” by incorporating tech tools and fresh ways of thinking to expand opportunities

> Several panelists urged the audience to pick a sampling of credible/reputable sources, say 20-30 blogs, and count on the industry leaders to keep you informed (this prevents info overload

> MM suggests adding to the conversation—and amplifying the message via your unique voice

Practice “Link Love”

> PH advises that you should always check out key websites in your areas of specialization and encourage traffic back and forth by reading and posting comments

among your leadership groups

> Tip: always link to the “permalink” in a blog, which is the long URL in the header; this generates a track back and makes your site stickier

The 411 on RSS

> Rich Site Summary or

> Really Simple Syndication

> This handy service is revolutionizing way we search for content on the Internet

> Benefits: web searchers don't necessarily have to check back to a particular site to see if it's been updated; all you have to do is subscribe to the RSS feed, much like a newspaper subscription, and then read site updates, delivered via RSS feeds, in what's called a "feed reader"

> Streamlines info process, allowing the “gatekeeper” to be removed

The following excerpts are from Wendy Boswell’s RSS column on

> RSS feeds benefit those who actually own or publish a website or blog, since site owners can get their updated content to subscribers fast by submitting feeds to various XML and RSS directories

> These are basically simple text files that, once submitted to feed directories, will allow subscribers to see content within a very short time after it's updated (sometimes as short as 30 minutes or less

> Content can be aggregated to be viewed even more easily by using a feed reader

> Allows for maximum optimization/capture of websites by online communities

> Results in maximum viewership of your site, or website hits which can be tracked for clients/customers who pay you for results

> Most experts agree an RSS feed is critical for optimum website/blog viewership

“Astroturfing” :: Stop or go at the info-zone?

From Wikipedia: Astroturfing is is a neologism for formal public relations campaigns in politics and advertising that seek to create the impression of being spontaneous, grassroots behavior. Hence the reference to the artificial grass AstroTurf.

The goal of such a campaign is to disguise the efforts of a political or commercial entity as an independent public reaction to some political entity—a politician, political group, product, service or event. Astroturfers attempt to orchestrate the actions of apparently diverse and geographically distributed individuals, by both overt ("outreach," "awareness," etc.) and covert (disinformation) means. Astroturfing may be undertaken by anything from an individual pushing their own personal agenda through to highly organized professional groups with financial backing from large corporations, non-profits, or activist organizations.

Do you AstroTurf or do you play by the rules? You decide as you craft your career.

WOMMA/Internet Marketing Code of Ethics

> Review WOMMA’s guidelines to learn more

> According to DB, the CEO of Fleishmann-Hillard dedicates at least one post per week to the subject of internet ethics and is firmly on the “ethical bandwagon”

> F-H is a founding member of WOMMA

Market Research

> Survey Monkey, one of many free or low-cost online survey resources

New Titles, Areas of Expertise for the Savvy Communications Professional

> Director of Blog Relations

> Manager of Microbrands (blogs, influential online communities & networks)

> Online / Interactive Engagement Specialist

> Develop your strengths; create a title that suits your specific skill set … it just might just grab the attention of an on-point creative director, account manager or human resource associate—separating you from the pack!

PR 2.0 Global Strategies :: Recommended Reading

> Conversations with Robert Graves, by Frank L. Kersnowski and Robert Graves

> The Search: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture, by John Battelle

> Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking, by Malcolm Gladwell

> The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make A Big Difference, by Malcolm Gladwell

> The Wisdom of Crowds, by James Surowiecki

> The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century, by Thomas L. Friedman

> The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use News Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing and Online Media to Reach Buyers Directly by David Meerman Scott

> We the Media, by Dan Gilmore (free download)

> Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything by Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams

> The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More, by Chris Anderson

> Citizen Marketers: When People Are the Message, by Ben McConnell and Jackie Huba

> Creating Customer Evangelists: How Loyal Customers Become a Volunteer Sales Force by Ben McConnell, Jackie Huba, and Guy Kawasaki

Coming Soon!

> Grassroots to Global PR: How to Excite and Interact with Today’s Mobile Consumer, Lynne Scott Jackson & Kevin K. Derricotte

MI motto: Nouveau niches—Internet riches!

To learn more, check Millynneum Insight often and check out the April 2007 post featuring comments from Derek “DJ” Gordon, Chief Marketing Officer of

>> MI

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Blogs & Wikis: Content with Purpose!

Wikis, blogs and other “convergence” technologies were recently discussed at an excellent New York University – Center for Teaching Excellence (NYU-CTE) seminar. This was a great post-script to an awesome tech symposium I attended last month in Chicago at the National Black Public Relations Society’s (NBPRS) annual conference.

You obviously know what a blog is since you’re reading this screen! Understand new tech tools and templates make all this stuff easy. One of my veteran PR / media maven friends was tremendously impressed with my blog. She was blown away when I told her it was a Google template! If I can build blogs—anyone can. The process is fantastically easy and fun. At this point, I have 10 blogs in development and more on the way to tie into various business and educational ventures.

With these seminars and personal study under my belt, I feel so smart! So, here’s a quick “wiki-blog recap” lesson for you.

What’s a wiki? Wiki means “quick” in Hawaiian (a la Wikipedia, the popular online encyclopedia), offering quick access to original information. Do you have original insight or knowledge? That mean’s it’s time to build a Wikipedia page and get your message into cyberspace. Just make sure it isn’t blatantly promotional—or your entry won’t be accepted. Remember that a wiki piece isn’t your own personal not a blog, it’s monitored!

CNN and other media outlets even have full-time internet/blog reporters who track trends and monitor who’s saying what. As long as your info is credible and there’s attribution, you’re good to go. For a journalist-educator-entrepreneur like me, it’s a real winner. Get busy building your wikipedia pages and blogs; expand your fan base and readership. As a citizen journalist, you can easily share your philosophy and thoughts with the world.

Let’s move on to a new course, Blog 101: A blog is a running journal or log, that’s disseminated over the internet or world wide web … hence “web log” or “blog.” See, this stuff is easy. The trick to anything on the internet is specialization. There is so much info out there. As communicators, our goal is to organize material in a way people can easily retrieve it. Think Google and what they’ve done with the “vast sandbox” which is the internet.

Organize what you know. Build specialized content that only you can create. What makes you tick? Use blogs and wikis as the fantastic personal marketing tools they are. Get your name out there. The great thing is right now, many of these tools are free!

Right now, convergence (of thought, technology) and integrated marketing communications are the buzz words. Further, there’s the process of integrated learning, via blogs, online courses/seminars/webinars. Think about how can repurpose information, refine the delivery for your audience and make money at the same time. In addition to being a wonderful informational tool, the internet represents capitalism at its finest. Add e-commerce and you can market/sell ways to make things simpler consumers, clients and audiences of all ages. Yes, a lot is free, but don’t negate the fact that folks will pay for information, if it’s creatively packaged and easy for them to retrieve and purchase.

For example, I’m working on a PR book – Grassroots to Global Public Relations: How to Excite, Inform and Influence Today’s Mobile Consumer, with a colleague, Kevin K. Derricotte. We will have a variety of interactive components to share what we know. Some if it will be for sale, but a lot of will be free. Keep posted. To learn a little about us, visit See, blogs are EASY and free. You have no excuse. Get started now and add as you go – that’s the beauty of blogging!

>> MI

Saturday, October 20, 2007

How to Manage Communication Overload

> Just Say No

- to procrastination
- to time wasters
- to interruptions
- to unnecessary phone calls, emails
- to people who don’t value your time, contributions or insight

> Prioritize & strategize to achieve success

> Eliminate what isn’t absolutely necessary

> Streamline & bulk similar tasks

> Complete difficult work during peak performance hours (we’re all different)

> Set deadlines … and stick to them!

> Plan ahead & expect the unexpected

> Offer timely responses
- use mode that works best for you … email/text/phone
- the key is to RESPOND and not let things fall between the cracks

> Strive for 80%+ completion and satisfaction rate (all projects/issues)

> Provide updates, obtain extensions & revise deadlines (if possible)

> Work to better manage time, resources & projects to achieve long-term goals

> Opt-out of what isn’t vital to your career/personal success

> Clear your “in box” each day

> Relinquish guilt of not being able to do it all … tomorrow is a new day!

>> MI

Sunday, September 02, 2007

LSJ to Present Strategic Writing Seminar
At National Black Public Relations Society Conference
Sept. 20-23 :: Chicago, IL

Join Lynne Scott Jackson, communications entrepreneur and instructor at New York University and The City College of New York, plus distinguished colleagues for a coaching session offering successful strategies to put your documents on par with presentations from big agencies.

The result: account wins, publicity and consumer mind share via persuasive writing techniques and presentations that showcase your unique expertise and get to the point with impact and influence! Learn elements needed to expand your writing beyond the nuts and bolts of a press release to create insightful work to help propel your career into a strategic practitioner.

Strategic Writing will be moderated by Kathleen Jeanty of Innerleaf Communications. Panelists include: Professors Sherry Hicks, Michelle Najor, Wayne State and Natalie Tindall, University of Oklahoma.

LSJ will encourage learners to Discover the Power of Effective Communication, relaying tips from more than 20 years as a reporter, content developer, ad/marketing exec, entrepreneur, diversity and advocacy expert. Further, LSJ and Co-Author Kevin Derricotte will publish G2GPR: Grassroots to Global Public Relations--How to Excite, Inform, Influence and Interact with International Consumers (Fall 2007).

Visit to register. This year’s conference theme is “Making Our Communities Better through the Power of PR!”

>> MI

Friday, August 10, 2007

Tech Tip of the Day

Purchase an external hard drive. Why?

*stores ENTIRE desktop (all files/projects/databases)

*eliminates need to tote laptop

*connects via USB port to any computer

*size: 5”x4” (less than 1” thick)

*cost: about $100

*sound investment for portability and peace of mind

> MI

Travel via, &

Have last minute travel needs? I was able to book a cost-effective last minute business trip to Las Vegas via Kayak less than 24 hours prior to departure. Great deal: Round-trip airfare and 2 nights, 3 star hotel for $634.

Lastminute, formerly Site59, also has great deals. My all time favorite is CheapTickets – you can always find good rates. Back in the day, they had a wonderful Manhattan location on 57th Street. Folks had their favorite travel agents, who worked computer magic, finding even better rates for walk-in customers.

Good customer service is a powerful sales tool. Since those exchanges nearly a decade ago, I’ve remained loyal to CheapTickets for nearly all of my business/personal travel needs. As a New Yorker, I opt never to pay retail!

> MI

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Millynneum Business Acumen (MBA)
Mentoring & Career Mobility Breakfasts
Monday, Sept. 10 (7:30 AM – Manhattan Location, TBA)

Accelerate your career journey during monthly breakfast meetings with like minded MarComm pros; open to seasoned execs and junior professionals.

Hosted by Lynne Scott Jackson :: Guest Speakers from new media, entertainment, publishing, corporate, content development, journalism, research and sales.
> Invitation only (nontransferable)
> 6-12 colleagues - maximum interaction & idea exchange

To learn more, contact

In development: 2008 Millynneum Business Acumen (MBA) east coast tour schedule; contact us to access extensive network of trainers with expertise in writing, communications, legal affairs and business development.

For career advice & events, visit!

>> MI

The Road to Law School
Council on Legal Education Opportunity

Know anyone considering law school? Check out; an excellent program and companion website.

Remember, Experati (MarComm execs with 20+ years experience) share what they know! In order to survive and thrive, we must utilize all the tools at your disposal. On the paternal “Scott” side of my family, my father, grandmother and great-grandfather earned law degrees from North Carolina Central, Boston University and Cornell, respectively. I’m sure they would have found this program invaluable when they started their careers.

My good friend Lonna Hooks, former NJ Secretary of State and current mid-Atlantic real estate mogul (Howard University School of Law) shared this info with me … and now I share it with you! Take the tip and share it with someone who is considering law school; give them a leg up on the fierce competition.

Further, codify information that comes across your desktop. Organize the subject matter; write a blog. Post brief comments like this. Use the internet to your advantage.

Don’t hold things in; share what you know … everyone wins!

>> MI

Use Networks & Increase Net Worth!
BPRSNY: Connect >> Communicate >> Collaborate

While social networking is a popular phrase, do you really understand the power of who you know?

Know this: Black Public Relations Society—New York ( is the premiere industry network for marketing communications professionals! Visit our website; be a part of this fast-growing communications advocacy and education association.

Last evening, BPRSNY hosted a festive summer mixer at Manhattan’s 230 Fifth Avenue’s fabulous Rooftop CafĂ©. While the Manhattan wraparound views from the 20th floor of 230 Fifth Avenue were stellar—the camaraderie, conversation and connections between PR pros in attendance was even more memorable!

We know your time is valuable and you have scores of options. Consider:

> All present exhibited a sincere passion for the marketing communications profession

> Seasoned media, entertainment and corporate professionals enthusiastically networked with newbies who wish to enter profession (always share what you know, it strengthens the network)

> Our marketing mix includes independent practitioners, agency heads, government execs, authors, corporate/legal executives, and communicators deft in digital and graphic design

> Members hail from Harlem to Hoboken, and all points in between

> Colleagues share stories about account changes, career opportunities, advocacy work, alumni associations and “for impact” organizations they support

> Positive vibes resulted in a new colleague from Delaware being offered a fantastic new NYC career opportunity (mum’s the word, I’m a journalist at heart and know we can’t post info online until she formally accepts the new gig … just received an email … so exciting!)

> Conversation and connections stimulated fresh perspectives and spurred us all to think in broad directions, using our leadership skills in exciting, new ways

Always try to learn more about who you know. Ask about their interests; figure out what makes them tick. Explore how you can help take their business to the next level. Discuss synergy and how you can grow together.

Don’t forget to take the time to make new connections. Never discount how a colleague may be able to help you. Gravitate to those younger … and older … than your contemporaries. Avoid cliques. Master the art of conversation. Mentor, and manage your associations to make a lasting impact.

Effectively “work” your network to systematically increase your net worth over time!

Special thanks to BPRSNY VP Renee Foster and Visual Historian Gerald Peart, who led the charge for this event and long-time org ambassadors Pauline Barfield of Barfield Public Relations and C. Adrienne Rhodes, Host/Executive Producer of complimentingVIEWS, an international/intergenerational program committed to informing, empowering and uplifting the masses.

And to our new friends, “all the very best until next time,” to quote Mike Millis, VP Special Events/Diversity. All board members, including Program Director Atiya Butler and Membership Director Kimberlee Bradshaw, look forward to your continued support and participation.

Leadership Lessons

To add value on an individual or collective level, BPRSNY shares these lessons as we fervently work to connect, communicate & collaborate:

> Quality usually reigns over quantity

> Keep it simple … don’t make things hard

> Think location, location, location* … which nearly always guarantees a good turnout and good time ... always keep your eyes and ears peeled for fantastic sites

*Our featured networking venue, the Rooftop Cafe, is conveniently located, has no cover and welcomes intimate gatherings and large corporate functions, with the capacity to expand to meet a robust RSVP list

*For great event sites in NYC and other cities, visit – a valuable and reliable online resource for locations and event suppliers

> Like the Nike slogan says – Just do it!

*Don’t over think it

> From concept to completion, we raised the roof and orchestrated a memorable networking event in less than 48 hours

-Board meeting & consensus (mid-June)

-Event format, invite copy approval (1 day)

-Distribution & RSVP’s via Evite* (1 day)

*continued for 3 week period

-Ongoing promotion & publicity … this is what PR pros do best : )

*Strategy: Evite & Excite (via word of mouth /repeat process often)

-Event execution and SUCCESS!

Networking Tips

As you develop a grassroots networking strategy for a client, corporation or “for impact” organization or professional association, remember:

> Folks appreciate the opportunity to share ideas, energy, insight

> Mentoring is valuable ... encourage colleagues ... embrace an "each one teach one mentality"

> Do something! Action motivates and generates momentum, which stimulates ongoing visibility, value and excitement. It's dangerous to stand still.

> “Keep on keeping on” and defy the naysayers, to quote Master Networker & BPRSNY Co-President Gordon Balkcom*!

*As BPRSNY Co-President, I truly understand and appreciate the value of effective audience/community relations. Know this … Gordon is my “go to” person when I need to know what’s going on in the communications industry.

*Word to the wise: your list of “go to” professionals should constantly expand throughout your career.

Mark Your Calendar
BPRSNY Human Resource PR Panel
Sept. 18 (Tuesday, 6-8 PM, NYC)

Meet representatives from leading agencies and corporations; Burson-Marsteller, 230 Park Avenue South. If you’re in career transition or ascending the ladder of success, you don’t want to miss this event! For cost and confirmed panelists, visit

BPRSNY and PRSANY Join Forces

Always leveraging the power of professional networks, BPRSNY recently forged an alliance with the Public Relations Society of America—New York chapter. Check out; together we’re taking a leadership role in mentoring and training the next generation of communications professionals, particularly those of color.

>> MI