Mar 7 2014
You have a little over a month to get those returns filed with Uncle Sam.
The sooner you do it, the faster you’ll receive that refund check, if you’ve got one coming to you. According to USA Today this week, the average refund so far this year is up three percent to $3,034.
Surveys show that most Americans will use the cash to pay down debt. Those between 18 and 34 years old are most likely to spend it on shopping or entertainment. What about you?
For a cup of coffee at the nearest Starbucks, tell us in six words what you would do with a $3,000 tax refund.
Put your six word refund plan in the comments below.
If we like your fiscal policy best, we’ll buy you a cuppa joe.
Winner announced next week. Congrats to Chance who won last week’s Ben & Jerry’s-themed…
Mar 6 2014
It’s awards season again, and not just in Hollywood! Chances are you or your company has been spending the last few weeks and months submitting your stellar campaigns for various industry awards. Recently we’ve had everything from the PRSA Silver Anvils to the PR Daily Awards, and the competition is even fiercer than best picture at the Oscars! So, how do you ensure your entry stands out, like Lupita Nyong’o’s powder blue dress against the red carpet? Here are some tips we’ve learned along the way:
1. Have a great title. Nothing starts off an entry summary on the wrong foot like a 20-word title with no drama or mystery! Cue the “get-off-the-stage” music now. Your title should give the judges a taste of what’s to come but leave them wanting more. For example, we’ve been submitting our work with Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU on their Holiday Cheer campaign for a variety of awards. A title like “Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU Spreads Holiday Cheer” probably wouldn’t even be in the running for Best Extra in a Short Film (yes I made that…
Mar 5 2014
After six years of the Big Apple grind, my husband and I relocated to the ‘burbs of Richmond, Virginia. Working in beverage marketing, I am fully aware this is media no-man’s-land. For nearly a decade, I had been so busy catering to major market influencers that I rarely thought about the best way to engage the other half of the country (aka, the more than 115 million people living in suburbia today).
Luckily, smaller markets offer communication professionals great opportunity to score big and perhaps hit a homerun long enough to benefit activities in major markets and the overall marketing campaign at the same time.
Here are three marketing lessons I learned from suburban living:
Mar 4 2014
Hollywood has long portrayed European reporters as being straightforward and ruthless. In fact, the 2009 film, Frost/Nixon, went a long way to reinforce this image. The film recounted famed British journalist David Frost’s series of hard-hitting interviews of former US president, Richard M. Nixon, regarding the Watergate scandal.
As a result, such portrayals beg the questions: Are European reporters as much of a potential “problem” as their image? Is their bark worse than their bite?
Oliver says it would be dangerous to extrapolate the British approach towards investigation and journalism, and broadly paint all European reporters with the same image. That certainly doesn’t hold true for French, Spanish, German, or certainly, Irish reporters, he notes.
But make no mistake about it. When working with European reporters, you’re dealing with a different breed of cat. European reporters write with a unique dramatic flair, Oliver points out.
With fewer global media brands, as compared to the U.S., European reporters aren’t encumbered with mega-corporations trying to manage the news and, more importantly, influencing the message.
Since European reporters tend to be very strong critics of big corporations, government officials and philosophies, Oliver warns that they tend to be more ideological than their US cohorts, often steering conversations and interviews into political directions.
So, here’s a word to the wise: PR pros should…
Mar 3 2014
Twitter, Facebook, Google, Amazon – these are where most of us are spending our time on the second screen. The second screen is the chronic TV watcher’s dream. Commercials come up? Back to Facebook. Boring plotline? Buy those headphones you’ve been eyeing on Amazon. Plot twist? Talk about it on Twitter in real time.
Marketers have been hard at work creating apps to take over the second screen – using it as another touch point for their TV shows, and another opportunity, of course, for advertising money. But, it’s taking some time to crack the nut… the app has to be engaging enough to keep people interested, but it’s important for it to connect to outside networks, particularly Twitter, to continue the global conversation.
This is what I like about it:
1) Direct Twitter integration: Twitter integrates live within the app, providing fun opportunities to follow his hashtag games. Jimmy announces his favorites during the show. Want to tweet? Just scroll to the bottom…