The Right Way to Write About Technology

Business-to-Business (B2B) technology is everywhere, and often companies are working hardest on software that we may never see. Even when you can’t see this technology, it’s affecting you—hopefully for the better.

b2bFor example, B2B technology may be helping your primary care physician understand the treatment you received while in the hospital through a health information exchange (HIE), or getting a customer service representative to resolve the issue you wrote about on Facebook through customer relationship management (CRM) software. These types of technology impact us daily, and provide needed business services in growing industries. For the public relations professional, that means new opportunities and projects.

The challenge is, how do you share their message with an audience who may not even know about, much less understand, their offerings? That’s where your writing expertise can play a crucial role. It’s all about finding a happy medium between too-technical jargon and fluffy nonsense.

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Source: www.dilbert.com

My first encounter with writing about technology came the day I churned out a newspaper article on iPods in the classroom, and my editor asked…

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5 Tips to Ensure Digital Marketing Success in 2014

ClickZ-Live-Logo-NewIn early April I had a great experience at the ClickZ Live Digital Marketing Conference in New York. During the three-day event I was bombarded with glorious amounts of information, stats, “aha” moments, head scratchers and confirmation that what I’ve been reading hasn’t been a bunch of malarkey. It’s impossible to synthesize all the information I ingested into one blog post, but I hope this synopsis provides some high-level insight into and provokes thought about how brands and marketers currently utilize the digital environment.

The State of Digital Marketing

zettabyteThere is no magic marketing bullet: I’ve spoken about integrated marketing in past posts, but this conference really confirmed that success in the online world will rely on a multitude of tactics, strategies, devices and channels to ensure that marketers reach their target audience. In a landscape where 2.7 zettabytes of digital data exists, campaigns that solely focus on paid, earned or owned media will easily get lost in the noise created by this continual and exponential growth of digital data.

Ensuring Digital Success in 2014

To cut through those zettabytes of digital noise, great content needs…

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BuzzLine: Fly Little Peep!

Finally, spring has sprung.

peepsI know this because the sun is shining, it feels great here in RVA and Peeps have made their annual migration to the candy aisle.

The Easter-time favorite, however, is about to make a push for year-round relevance.

According to BusinessWeek, Peeps’ manufacturer Just Born will launch Peeps Minis on May 1. The “bite-sized, flavored version of the old-time candy” will come in three flavors: strawberry crème, chocolate crème and sour watermelon.

This week on the BuzzLine, let’s see if we can help the little Peeps take flight – with some six-word taglines, of course!

Maybe… Peeps Minis:

  • A sweet treat for peeps everywhere.
  • Any time is the right time.
  • Tweet Tweet! We all love Peeps!

I know you can do better than that… Here are the rules.

Put your suggested SIX-WORD (no more, no less) tagline in the comments below. If we like yours best, you’ll win a Starbucks gift card for a treat of your choosing. Marshmallows optional.

We’ll announce a winner next week. And congrats to last week’s winner, Lauren Smith!

Now, Peep it up.

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Wine, Food & Nutrition

4 Tips for Working with Supermarket Dietitians

shopping cartOver the past ten years, the number of dietitians employed by supermarket retailers has grown tremendously. The midwestern-based chain, Hy-Vee, now employs a registered dietitian in almost every one of its 230-plus stores. What better place for consumers to seek dietary guidance than where they shop? The Food Marketing Institute’s Shopping for Health survey, taken by 1,500 retailers, showed that 85 percent employ dietitians at the corporate level, and about 50 percent employ dietitians regionally.

The FMI survey also reports that nearly 50 percent of shoppers are confused by information surrounding nutrition and, if they had to choose an expert to help them live healthier, most would choose a dietitian over a personal chef or a personal trainer. A few reasons why grocery-goers may utilize the services of a registered dietitian are to seek guidance on shopping for specific diet-related health concerns, for help on how to read food labels and ingredient lists, or for ways to help them create healthy meals for their families.

Supermarket dietitians wear many hats and their role(s) differ store to store. They lead found-in-store tours that teach customers how to navigate the aisles and decipher front of packing claims…

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Brand Journalism: Health Providers Embracing New Storytelling Strategy

The movement toward brand journalism offers special benefits to the health industry. Healthcare affects everyone’s life, so audiences naturally relate to timely news and information about topics like medical advances, patient treatments and personal health advice. Equally compelling are the human-interest stories that abound in the healthcare field.

Such high-interest content makes brand journalism sites a no-brainer for many healthcare providers.

In fact, several top healthcare organizations have implemented this storytelling tool and are seeing success. For those considering adopting this approach, we’ve shared a few examples of providers who are setting the standard.

Advocate Health Care health enews

Advocate Health Care, a hospital group in the Chicago suburbs, launched health enews a year ago to increase mindshare among local journalists and consumers.  An in-house newsroom of six core communicators develops content for the site, including videos, feature stories and commentary on breaking health news.

Advocate Health 2 (3)While the site’s intent is to build awareness of Advocate’s services and expertise, some of the most captivating articles are personal stories told by people within the organization.

For example, Tim Nelson, an Advocate public affairs manager, shared his experience helping his…

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