1. Great article Laurel! Hopefully Australian brands and their PR will catch up with the rest of the world and accept that social media/blogging are changing the way things are done. It is still a challenge to source information and quality images from brands, even though I have users practically begging to see the new collections each season.

    1. ayep. The challenge is that a whole multi-billion industry has been built up of “mediators” – professionals who get between the brand and the client – and therefore there has to be a lot of handholding before brands understand that the fans can do a better job of connecting them to clients than broadcast media can… They will get it though!

  2. This is exactly the same as happens to food bloggers. And there’s a growing backlash. Too many Prs have no idea what they are doing with social media.

    1. I heard of a food company – I won’t name them – who asked top bloggers to give up a few days to advise them on some new products (they would take them to a conference centre out of town). When the bloggers asked how much they would be recompensed for time away from family and jobs etc, the PR organisers were shocked that they “would be so mercenary”.
      I don’t think every blogger wants to be paid all the time but some companies need to get serious about respecting the knowledge and power of committed, educated, knowledgeable, audience-building bloggers.

  3. Great post. I wonder if the PR industry (as well as brands) are using old methods to approach bloggers and struggling. I don’t think they’ll find success in simply applying what they’ve done before like there’s no difference. I like the suggestion about Facebook and that PR needs to understand blogging a bit more.

  4. Interesting about that food company. The other thing is PR people phoning up and picking your brains for free advice. I’ve now become quite militant on this as none are prepared to pay for advice so I won’t give it. They think a social media plan is inviting people to a few events and that’s it. They don’t realise the need to engage. I also think that they should give bloggers the option to opt out – unsubscribe – as not everybody wants to be sent loads of press releases.

  5. Hi Laurel. Using Facebook events is a great suggestion. I just had a question re your statement: “I don’t know if journalists care who else is going to a press event, but bloggers do. Any industry blogger knows the other bloggers, and can judge the must-attendness (new word) of the event.”

    I work in PR and typically don’t get asked by journos who else is going to press events. I’ve probably had this happen once in the last four years. Do you not just judge the event or opportunity based on its individual merit, the brand involved, your area of interest and that of your readers?

    1. Who is attending an event is THE most powerful motivator in Social Media. Which is why attendee lists are available on user generated conference sites like Facebook Events, Upcoming, Eventfull, Meetup etc.
      When it says “One of Your Friends is attending”, you ignore it. As soon as it says “Fifteen of Your Friends” are attending, it becomes a hot ticket item. I’ve been involved in events that have used no traditional advertising just that word of mouth statement… very successful.

      You’d have to have a killer idea/event and be able to describe it well enough in one sentence to be more powerful than Social Recommendation engines… I reckon.

        1. You’re welcome -btw of course you have to have relevant content and merit to be in the game. I guess it’s just that bloggers get paid in community respect/contacts/karma from peers, whereas journos less so. cheers 😛

  6. Well put! My personal fave was a PR company who failed to deliver a giveaway item to my winner in a timely manner. When I called numerous times to complain, and finally reached her, she replied, “I have to be honest with you – I would be much more concerned about this if you were a paying customer.” *blink*

  7. This is an interesting article, It’s becoming ever important to have an IT technician that is savy online and able to achieve what you want from online. Social Media is a hot new crazy thing that can generate attention to a service and product, which generates sales I’ve found a great place called http://www.knowyoursocialmedia.info where you can generate the sort of interest thats right for you. What greater is that I also to PR and I’m learning what it means to be a blogger and journalist and how their both important for an event.

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