Sword and the Script

General Electric Theater: Reagan met Content Marketing in 1954



by Frank Strong

General Electric Theater Where Reagan met Content Marketing in 1954-1
In 1954, the television had reached a critical milestone:  26 million U.S. households (56%) owned a TV.

Long before product placements and sponsored content, one iconic American brand placed a big bet in creating its own television program – another example of an early content marketing initiative – at the urging of its public relations department.

The show, General Electric Theater, was born and its host would be none other than Ronald Reagan.

The experiment was a wild success. Read More…

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4 Free Chrome Brower Extensions for a Digital PR Edge



by Frank Strong

4 Chrome Brower Extensions that Give PR Pros a Digital Edge

Blog posts that recommend some absurd amount of tech tools that are labeled “must have” amaze me. Some of the titles list dozens, even hundreds of tools that are “essential.”

Nobody, except perhaps a carpenter, needs a hundred tools and the chances are the proponents of such posts hasn’t even tried them all.

To that end, I can promise readers three things:  This post recommends a manageable number of tools to try four tools, I use each one on a daily basis and these truly provide a digital PR edge.   Read More…

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Survey says PR Best Positioned to Manage Corporate Social Media



by Frank Strong

PR in a Better Position to Manage Corporate Social Media

Ownership is a strong word in the high-stakes game of corporate social media turf wars – yet consensus increasingly points to PR as primary proponents.

A recent survey by the employment agency, The Creative Group, says corporate executives are increasingly inclined to pin the communications shop with such responsibility. More than half, or 51% of executive surveyed said the public relations or communications department is “is best suited to oversee an organization’s social media efforts.”  Read More…

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Best and Worst of Sword and the Script in 2015



by Frank Strong

Best and Worst of Sword and the Script in 2015

The process of analyzing the best performing and worst performing is both insightful and humbling.

It’s insightful for thinking through why content performed or underperformed.  This is an analytical skill that is easily parlayed into one’s professional work.

It’s humbling for the posts thought derived from epiphany, inspiration or passion that seemingly go nowhere. Every blogger, indeed every writer, can likely relate to this phenomenon. Read More…

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7 Superior Podcasts for Super Listeners Eyeing the Big Picture



by Frank Strong

7 Superior Podcasts for Super Listeners Eyeing the Big Picture

Podcasting as a medium has ebbed and flowed for the last several years. It hasn’t exploded like some have said, but it’s certainly captured a respectable share of the market.  Some 17% of Americans listen to podcasts monthly according to Statista.

There’s several other important points about podcast listeners.  They are affluent, educated and maintain “listening habits dramatically different than the average American,” according to Edison Research.  In other words, these people listen to lots of podcasts.

In a 5-minute webinar titled Why Podcasting Might be Bigger than you Think (video embedded nearby), the research firm says podcast listeners consume upwards of 5.5 hours of podcasts a day.  That may sound like an impossible amount of time, until you realize listeners take “audio where it may not have been previously consumed.” Read More…

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Instinct: What Public Relations Can Learn from the Wild



Animal Instinct What Public Relations Can Learn from the Wild

Note:  This is a contributed post by Samantha Virgil, an intern with NYC-based Spector PR.  

You’re absolutely in love with your dog, your pet fish or caged bird, but have you ever wondered what you can learn from animals beyond loyalty and compassion? Have you ever considered that animals have profound lessons to teach you about – your public relations career?

If not, don’t worry – we’ve done the work for you. From lovable companions inside your home to living in the wild, animals have many incredible qualities that could change your PR trajectory. Here are five – unlikely – creatures worth your admiration: Read More…

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How PR can Integrate Industry Reading Efficiently into Workflow



by Frank Strong

How PR can Integrate “Industry Reading” into Workflow with Efficiency

“Industry reading.”  Those are two words that have no business on a PR agency’s invoice.

What client wants to pay for “reading?”  Is there a metric attached – reading at so many words per minute? Or a knowledge measurement – a test of information retention?

Though logging of billable hours doesn’t apply, the same fundamental value question is true on the corporate side of the table.

Reading isn’t a business function, but it’s inherently important daily habit of the best PR professionals.  The reality is, the value of reading is in understanding media trends, industry perspective and more broadly, a form of research social medialites call “listening.” As if listening was new.  Read More…

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In Content Marketing, Marketers Might be Losing Their Way



by Frank Strong

In Content Marketing Marketers Might be Losing Their Way

Content marketing is blending the functions of marketing and sales to the extent, marketing has lost its focus on creating demand.

That’s my take after listening to Tom Webster evolve a concept over couple of podcasts on The Marketing Companion and finally rendered in a more polished format on Mark W. Shaefer’s {grow}: The dangerous confusion of sales and content marketing.

He makes several interesting points, and two that stood out for me:

1. Content proliferation for irrational buyers. Read More…

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The Empire Strikes Back:  3 Reactions to Amazon vs. NYT



by Frank Strong

The Empire Strikes Back 3 Reactions to Amazon vs

Former pitch man for the President, Jay Carney, came out swinging in a big way for Amazon today.  He managed to revive a 60-day-old story the rest of the world had forgotten with a post on Medium: What The New York Times Didn’t Tell You.

Though the initial reaction to the Times story certainly wasn’t planned – the spontaneous and candid response of one Amazon employee went viral – I instinctively believed it worked out in Amazon’s favor.

It was an event with a lesson that organizations of all sizes should examine, because in a crisis communications scenario, there are few spokespeople more reliable than a passionate employee. Read More…

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