Summer Fun at IMS13 With PerkettPR – Get Your Schwag With Bite

ActualSharksIf you’re attending IMS in San Francisco today, please be sure to find our own Jennifer Hellickson, who will be giving away these cool shark bottle openers to the first 100 folks to connect with her. We’re having some fun at the show by combining our love of summer, Shark Week and our intent on delivering killer marketing. Find Jennifer at the show (hint: follow her or us on Twitter to help you do so) and you will also get directions on how to enter a chance to win our $100 gift card drawing, which will be announced on Friday, August 2 at 10 a.m. PST/1 p.m. EST on Google+, so join us there, too.

If you’re not at IMS this week, take heart! We also thought it would be fun to share some shark trivia, so follow along today and tomorrow on Twitter or Facebook and test your shark knowledge. We’ll be randomly choosing five online folks to receive a complimentary bottle opener as well. (Hint, you could increase your chances by tweeting with @PerkettPR and #killermarketing in your tweets!)

Enjoy learning at IMS, San Francisco, and contact us if you need help taking a bigger bite out of the industry with #killermarketing strategies.

Saying Thanks

It’s that time of year again – time to say thanks to clients, partners, staff and others who we have the pleasure of working with. We’re very grateful for everyone who has supported us in one way or another this year – from referrals, to recommendations for great new staff members, to sharing our content and reading, Tweeting, following, liking, Pinning or otherwise spreading the word about what we’re doing at PerkettPR for our clients.

 

Thank you!

As for what else we’re grateful for? It varies, of course, but the overwhelming response from staff was gratitude for family and friends. We think we’re nice people – and we also like working with nice people. Here’s what some of our own nice staff members had to say about what they’re grateful for:

 

I am so thankful for my family and friends as well as clients’ and co-workers’ support this year. While we have likely all had ups and downs this year, Thanksgiving is a great time look back on the good times and good people in your lives and tell them how much you love and appreciate them. Hug your family and friends, be kind to one another, and enjoy every moment of togetherness the holidays bring.

 

I am thankful for my health and home, my work and art. I am thankful for my wife and her wisdom, my children and their innocence. I am thankful for bacon. But I am most thankful this time of year when everyone sets aside their differences to remember what it means to be human and to enjoy one another.

 

Grateful most of all for my family’s health.

 

I am thankful that through my wife Laura’s efforts, 1,500 dogs have been saveed that would have otherwise been put to death.  Check out her efforts at www.dogsneedhomes.blogspot.com.

 

I’m grateful for friends and family – they brighten each and every day throughout the year, but I’m particularly thankful to be able to celebrate them around the holidays!

 

I’m grateful for the opportunity to work with the great PR pros at Perkett!!

 

I am grateful for all the men and women in the military that risk their lives for us each and every day.

 

I’m grateful to live in a country where I have the freedom to choose and to make my own way. From the opportunity to work, to vote, to become a parent; to marry who I want, to buy a home, or a car, or a horse if I want to – every day I get to make choices that we all too often take for granted. And of course, I am grateful for friends and family who encourage me to never give up, always believe in myself, and to work hard to achieve my dreams.

 

Happy Thanksgiving – what will you be saying “Thanks” for this year?

 

 

 

 

“Trading cards here! Get your trading cards here!”

New PR Tips Collection to be Featured Weekly; Ultimately Producing a PR “Bible”

 

What do baseball and PR have to do with one another? Other than individual performances adding up to a team win, maybe not much (although it could be a fun subject for a future blog post). Regardless, PerkettPR is hoping to create some fun with its new “PR Trading Cards,” which will be featured on our Pinterest and Facebook pages starting this week.

Remember collecting baseball cards as a child – trading and sharing and trying to obtain them all?  We wanted to create some similar fun – while also sharing some best PR practices – by showcasing our own “trading card collection” of PR Tips, by way of trading cards that you can trade, share or just keep handy.  You can even print each trading card off and stick in the spokes of your bicycle if you like. ;) We’ll be featuring two trading cards each week with our top PR and marketing tips.

In addition to sharing and trading them, we’d love for you to submit your own PR tips – we’ll design the best tips into a trading card to be featured in the collection.  A fan-contributed PR Tip trading card will be featured each Friday on our Pinterest and Facebook pages and included in an upcoming “PR Bible” as well.  This “PR Bible” will include the first 50 PR tips submitted, along with your name as the contributor.

To add to the fun, if you collect and share 10 tips or more, you can win a PerkettPR coffee mug. So be sure to like, follow, plus, view or read us and let us know that you’ve been sharing!

Are you ready for some fun? Head on over to our Pinterest and Facebook pages and check them out! To contribute a PR tip, please email your idea to prtips@perkettpr.com.

 

Everyone Works for the Marketing Department

Last night I was fortunate enough to make my way with Heather Mosley to deCordova Museum in Lincoln, MA for Marketing Profs Smart Marketers Tour – Boston. In addition to a gorgeous venue and evening, the crowd was lively and the speakers – interviewed by Matt Grant of Marketing Profs – were excellent. I’m also a big fan of Marketing Profs Chief Evangelist, Ann Handley – so anytime I get to see her and chat for even a minute is a bonus.

As a former Harvard Square resident, I was very interested to hear the lessons learned – and continued innovations of – Harvard Bookstore’s Jeff Mayersohn, who bought the store in 2008. He talked about the challenges of buying a book and mortar business in an industry that has been rumored to be dying. He mentioned that many people told him he was “insane” – and I believe it is that kind of insanity that helps us reach disruption. You also have to be a little bit crazy to be an entrepreneur – it’s the only way to survive. Jeff’s craziness has obviously paid off, as the business has doubled its growth under his tenure, through online marketing, innovative events and unique offerings such as the Expresso Book Machine, which prints any book in just five minutes. In addition to his interesting tales of business and marketing success, Jeff reminded us why technology isn’t going to replace books but rather, can enhance the experience of reading and buying them. He had plenty of powerful and interesting quotes that rang true for me, such as “When you go into a bookstore, the best experience is finding a book you didn’t know existed but you just have to read.” He’s right – it’s akin to any online shopping for me, really. Online is about speed and convenience, but it is never as fun as going into a funky store draped in goodies that I can touch, feel, try out and discover.

The second guest was Lou Imbriano, the former vice president and chief marketing officer of the New England Patriots and current president and CEO of TrinityOne, a marketing strategy and business advisory consultancy, and author of Winning the Customer. Lou is a character. In addition to his self proclaimed “freakin’ brilliant” marketing ideas, he is chock full of sound bytes that had everyone Tweeting away during his interview. Lou took it well when members of the audience chided him a bit for touting his success for an organization that has different challenges – and deeper pockets – than most traditional marketers face. Nonetheless, Lou gave us interesting insight into his experiences in marketing a beloved brand through good seasons and bad, and how he continued to create new milestones for himself and his marketing team to surpass. I also loved that he talked about teaching everyone in the organization why marketing matters. In fact, one of his most controversial quotes of the night was,

“Everyone works for marketing; everyone needs to be a custodian of the brand.”

Now, non-marketers might not like this. Sales, HR, customer service, maybe even the C-Suite might take offense. But if they can set aside their egos for a minute and think about it, they’ll realize that although not technically accurate, it’s true. And of course, marketing works for every division in the company as well. Lou had some of his own great examples of this – such as the receptionist of the Boston Red Sox answering the phone in a shrill voice and having someone have that as their first interaction with the brand. I’ve said before in previous posts that marketing’s work is wiped out if the other departments of a company don’t hold up to and follow through on the promises marketing publicly makes to customers and prospects every day. Marketing can work consistently to develop a beloved brand, but no doubt that even one bad customer service experience can tarnish all that hard work faster that you can say “Twitter.”

In fact, I had my own such experience on the way to the event. I had recently received a new credit card from TJX – after many trips to Marshalls and as a self-proclaimed “Maxxinista,” they finally convinced me to open a rewards card useable across their stores. So while driving to the MP event, I called to activate my card. Only I couldn’t because they kept telling me that my birth date was inaccurate. (Um, no.) After 15 excruciatingly frustrating minutes of just trying to get off with the computerized system and on with an actual human being, I finally explained the situation and thought surely, this customer service rep could help. I was sure she’d recognize that human error on their end (inputting my DOB into their system incorrectly) meant they should run my social security number and see that they indeed had my DOB wrong, and simply fix it so I could activate my card. But no, this woman explained to me that it would a multiple step process on my end to fax in a bunch of information in order to fix this issue that was their mistake. By this point, I was beyond agitated and explained to her that I thought it was ridiculous to put the customer through all of these extra steps when 1) the error was clearly on their end and 2) they could run my ss# and all other details and confirm that they indeed have my DOB wrong and simply fix it. She didn’t seem to care that I was frustrated and just offered to cancel the card. That further irritated me because anyone knows that opening and closing credit cards haphazardly can negatively affect your credit rating. Furthermore, I found it absolutely ludicrous that in the end she actually did offer to activate the card for me – but told me I couldn’t pay it online or access my rewards. In other words, without my correct DOB I can still spend and shop with the card – but I CAN’T PAY YOU in the fastest, easy way possible (online)?

This experience – a cumulative 20 minutes – just tainted my feelings about the TJX brand even though technically, it’s probably the financial institution behind the card that is to blame (well them, and the woman behind the counter at Marshalls that made the error in the first place and is thus causing me this massive headache just to SPEND MONEY WITH TJX). Case in point – even your partners work for your marketing department. This partner of TJX left a bad taste in my mouth for going back in and spending more money with them any time soon.

So, what Lou said resonates with me – and it should resonate with you. You likely pay a lot to market your company, product and brand. Why not let other departments recognize their role in “working for marketing” – upholding those brand promises in every single interaction they have with customers? From the customer service rep to the receptionist, intern at a networking event to CEO speaking at a major conference, everyone does indeed have an impact on the marketing of your brand.

Christine Perkett and Heather Mosley of PerkettPR at Boston's MPTour

Thanks for the soundbytes, Lou, and for a great event with many fascinating lessons, Marketing Profs!