Digital Marketing

BuzzLine: What’s your (tiny) New Year’s Resolution?

1 Tis the season of “losing 10 pounds,” “giving up carbs,” and “working out every day.” That’s right; it’s that wonderful time of year when people start brainstorming their New Year’s resolutions.  As healthy and optimistic as our intentions are every year, how many of us can say we actually keep up with them for more than a week? A month? A couple of months? Trying to make these huge lifestyle changes each year clearly isn’t working, at least for me…or I’d be a marathon runner with a six pack.

In fact, only 8 percent of people who set New Year’s resolutions actually stick to them. Maybe that’s because we consistently set goals that require us to change our lives in a major way. So this year, let’s commit to setting smarter, smaller and more fun resolutions. You’ll reach them faster and have more reasons to celebrate throughout the year, and who doesn’t love a celebration?

My tiny goals this year are:

-          Remember friends’ birthdays… without Facebook’s help

-          Finish a Chapstick before losing it

-          Try new wine: Boxed doesn’t count

-          Celebrate the small successes, every day…

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Product Marketing

Ho Ho Holiday Gift Guides

What do you think is the most heavily pitched topic in the PR media relations sector? Well, if it’s not the “new year, new you” pitches that are on their way out, it’s most definitely holiday gift guides.

New York Magazine Gift Guide

Can you imagine how many people simultaneously sent merry messages about their client’s perfect stocking stuffer? It’s easy to say we’ll get a product into the hottest holiday gift guide, but in reality – it’s hard work!

So now that you’ve finished pitching those gift guides and you wait for last-minute coverage to trickle in, you must be asking yourself: was it worth it? Really, is there value in furiously pitching seasonal gifting stories in such a crowded market?

Here are three reasons I believe they’re one of the most powerful methods for consumer product awareness.

1. They Need You as Much as You Need Them

In order for writers to compile a holiday gift guide, they need gifts to write about. There’s no question there. They need options. The trick is getting them to choose your product over the awesome Star Wars Light Saber Chopsticks out…

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Without a leg to stand on: Four observations about healthcare (that I learned the hard way)


I have worked with hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, outpatient services and medical professionals for more than 30 years. I thought I really KNEW the healthcare industry.

But, I learned more during the past seven months than in all the 30 years before.

In May, ruptured discs pinched nerves in my back and literally drained all strength from the quadriceps muscles in my left leg. Three days after surgery, while dutifully doing my walk therapy, I stumbled and immediately depended on my “good” right leg to steady me.  Evidently, one of the seven pre-MRI falls had damaged or stretched my right knee.  Instead of steadying me, the Patellar tendon in my right knee ripped apart in multiple places.  My knee cap was yanked into my thigh and a sunken hole replaced my previously dependable knee joint.  Ouch.

As I laid on the ground suffering, I knew my wife was (now) right.  I did not have a leg to stand on….

But, this became the first day of my real on-the-job healthcare training – as a patient.

Based upon my first seven months of first-hand experience, here are four key learnings and observations:

  • Good medical insurance is amazing. I admit, understanding the 47 different…
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    Ditch Your Agency’s Process

    Choosing not to follow the rules laid out for you might just be the difference between mediocrity and greatness.


    Browse a few communications agency websites and you’ll quickly see that every agency has a branded process for their work. They preach it internally and promote it to clients and in new business presentations. Many of these processes are proprietary, yet nearly every one of them includes some combination of research, strategy, creative development, and measurement. Each agency has its own unique twist, spin or terminology, but the basic building blocks are always there.

    It’s so important to have a well-defined process and approach. Following a process is how we learn. It’s how we grow and hone our craft. No matter the industry in which you work, you must spend time practicing the basics. Where would Fred Astaire be without his first dance class? Where would Shakespeare be without learning the basics of sentence structure?

    But the hard truth, the one most agencies never grasp, is that you can master the basics—you can follow them to a “t”—but that approach will never lead to great work.

    Truly great work happens after you’ve mastered the…

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    Digital Marketing

    BuzzLine: Instagram vs. Twitter

    buzzlineIts official – Instagram has beat out Twitter as the most actively used social networking site. Wednesday Instagram reported it has 300 million active monthly users. That’s a lot of #picsoftheday! Although Instagram’s growth has been fast, it’s no surprise, really. As visuals become ingrained in everything we do from reading the news to calling up a friend on FaceTime, it’s no revelation that a social networking platform based 100% on pictures would quickly rise to the top.

    However, Twitter remains an important platform not only to communicate with your friends, but for brands to engage with their consumers. Millennials will continue to gain more and more buying power, about $200 billion annually by 2017, so being able to interact with them on the variety of different platforms they’re using is not just fun and games anymore – it’s vital to brand exposure.

    So let’s brainstorm! Imagine you are the Chief Marketing Officer for Twitter…what six-word tagline would you create to help the brand continue to gain popularity and active users?


    - Connect through conversation and tweet on!

    - Save the bird, send a tweet

    - Some pictures aren’t…

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