Waxing UnLyrical

Curious About the Harvard Business Analytics Program? Your Questions, Answered.

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Going back to school. I enrolled in, and graduated, the Harvard Business Analytics Program on March 31, 2021.

2020: The Year Data Saved The World

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How you think 2020 will be remembered? I think it will be as The Year Data Saved The World. Image: HCFM Communicate via Wikimedia Commons , CC BY-SA 4.0.

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Lessons in Pandemic Patience From an Orchid

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I find it simultaneously unbelievable and miraculous that we are almost halfway through December, and that — as we approach 2021 — I’d be sharing lessons in pandemic patience from an orchid.

How to Successfully Digitize Events During COVID-19

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“Please sir, no more” Yesterday I saw a tweet that made me grin: Please, sirs, no more ZoomsSlacksHangoutsGDocsAirTable pic.twitter.com/GQ1gfuRSPJ. Roben Farzad 🎙️ (@robenfarzad) April 8, 2020. I’ve been working virtually, at least in part, since 2006.

The Content Marketing Survival Guide: How to Navigate the Wilds of Social Media

Use this guide to inspire your creativity and ignite more successful and sustainable social media conversations.

When the FDA won the Internet (also, cicadas)

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The FDA winning the Internet? One of the coolest media wins last week came from the FDA (h/t Kristy Cartier ). It had to do with something I’m really into (and never expected to be): cicadas.

What a Sandcastle Reminded Me About Strategy

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Ground, unbroken. I thought I’d have broken blogging ground for 2020 by now.

“I’m vacillating between #nopants and very excited”

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“Twistin’ the night away” I am SUPER excited for tonight. Because, after more than a year of limited human contact, most of it virtual, I get to go dancing. DANCING! With REAL people! At a REAL dance hall! And REAL music!!!

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[EVENT]: PR Hacks for Small Biz (online)

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Event Alert: “PR Hacks for Small Biz” Friday, June 18, 10 am ET . A very quick post to share that I’m speaking on what promises to be a super-fun panel presented by DesignHill: PR Strategies and Hacks for Small Businesses.

The Future of PR is Precision – Less Gut, More Data

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Guest Post by Ben Chodor. The public relations industry has grown and thrived as a result of its ability to earn media coverage, generate creative campaign ideas and assist with crisis communications for their clients, brands and products.

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Social Media Marketing GPS

SMGPS will tell you the why & how to use social media for marketing, 1 tweet at a time. You'll learn essentials in digestible little spoonfuls.

[BOOK ALERT] The Non-Obvious Guide to PR & Communication

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Announcing The Non-Obvious Guide to PR & Communication. Super quick and exciting (well, for me) announcement: I’m writing a book!

Once Upon a Time …: The Art of Storytelling

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Guest Post by Elena Bosch. The art of storytelling is rooted in the origins of every society. As far back as history can reach, humans have used storytelling to teach the next generation, to connect with others, to protect their culture and much, much more. According to Dr. Brené Brown, research professor at the University of Houston and best-selling author, storytelling is innate. “We’re We’re wired for story.

My Three Words for 2020

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Countdown to 2020: Part II. When I published last week’s post, I noted that it was exactly four weeks to 2020. Exactly four weeks not just to a new year, but a whole new decade. The next decade is already knocking on our door! Looking back.

What Is This “Free Time” Of Which You Speak?

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“All this free time on your hands” As we move into Week 523 of The Shutdown To End All Shutdowns, I have noticed an increase in the number of marketing emails that offer suggestions on what to do with “all this free time on your hands.”

How to Be Social: A Social Media Manifesto

Learn the 10 worst social media marketing mistakes and how to avoid them.

Stop Chasing the Glittery Disco Ball of Influencers: Consider Micro Influencers

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Guest Post by Debbie Friez. On the marketing dance floor, influencer marketing is all the craze-because it works. In fact, 58 percent of brands have seen improved brand awareness and perception from influencer marketing campaigns. This is great news for marketers looking to increase the impact of their campaigns. But, this is not a one-size-fits-all white Saturday Night Fever suit for dancing.

Technology Makes Us Lazy Communicators

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Guest Post by Matt LaCasse. When Shonali reached out to me to ask if I’d write a guest post on technology in communication, I immediately jumped at the chance. My brain then said, “That’s like writing something about fish in the ocean, man.” Fair point. There are as many different angles to take on that topic as there are grains of sand on the beach.

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What Makes Us Influential?

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Guest Post by Patrice Tanaka. I returned last night tired, but energized from a four-day Dress for Success “Success Summit” attended by 100 women leaders globally. As I contemplated this post Shonali asked me to write on the topic of “influence” it occurred to me that the hugely gratifying Success Summit was a perfect illustration of the concept of Influence. Behavioral scientist Jon Levy in his TED Talk “What Makes Us Influential?”

Being of Service During COVID-19

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“It’s the end of the world as we know it…” Before I go any further: I hope you and yours are safe and well. Talk about the world being turned upside down, right? I imagine I’m not alone in R.E.M.’s

8 Stupid Simple Social Media Tricks to Boost SEO

Discover just how easy it is to boost SEO with social media.

New Year’s Resolutions for the Social PR Pro

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The “three words” still rule. In my last post, I talked about how, instead of setting New Year’s Resolutions, I was instead going to put Chris Brogan’s “three words” exercise into practice.

How To Translate Your Company Purpose Into Slick Visual Branding

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Guest post by Rodney Laws. Businesses come into existence through a complex combination of factors. Sometimes it’s a matter of the right skillset proving value at the right time, and an opportunity coming up to turn its use into a full-time operation. But no matter its origin story, every business needs a defined purpose — a core goal that, while contrived, communicates its style and intent. Identifying such a purpose though is just the beginning.

5 Simple Ways Small Businesses Can Ace Social Listening in 2019

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Guest Post by Amos Onwukwe. Big business bureaucracy stifles B2C communication. Small businesses on the other hand, are like the local government, they’re closer to consumers. However, most SMBs haven’t a clue how they can profit from this proximity which gets even better with social media via social listening. 2018 SBA reports show there are 30.2 million SMBs in the US , 90% of which analysts say fail. One of the reasons for this is brand deafness.

Influencer Engagement: Finding a Fit

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Guest post by Lauren Lawson-Zilai. Influence by definition means the capacity to have an effect on the character, development or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself. Which makes sense given that influencers bridge communications with your publics and help define the public’s attitude and behavior toward your organization’s mission and purpose.

Social Media Automation 101

A beginner's guide to social media automation tools and getting automation right.

Strategic Planning for Our One Very Brief and Precious Life

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Guest Post by Patrice Tanaka. We are often more strategic in business than in our personal life. At work we wouldn’t think of beginning any important assignment without first carefully determining and articulating the goals and objectives.

Announcement: The Social PR Virtuoso® Master Course Has a New Home

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It’s been quiet around these parts lately, hasn’t it? What can I say, there just seems to be so much going on. And that’s where I’ll leave that.). But before I go any further, I hope you and yours are staying as safe and well as possible.

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Become the Pied Piper of Community Building

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Guest Post by Samantha Lake. Communities have been around for centuries, however online communities have only been around for a few decades. According to Computerworld the first “online community” came about in 1973 when Talkomatic for the PLATO time-sharing system released a text-based group chat. From there it evolved into email discussion lists (who remembers LISTSERV?), Bulletin Board Systems (BBSs), finally leading us to modern day social networks.

Creative Storytelling: Picture This: It’s Not Just the Words – It’s What You Do with Them

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Guest Post by Mary Wascavage. Every morning I listen to the Elvis Duran Morning Show on my way in to work. I like to be entertained throughout my commute, and Duran’s show doesn’t disappoint. It’s talk-show-meets-freak-show with popular contemporary music added in for good measure. This one day, in particular, Duran told a story about the man who inspired his career choice.

I Need to Develop a Strategy. Now What? The Winnie-the-Pooh Way Forward

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Guest Post by Paula Newbaker. Aren’t word clouds great? They highlight what is important within a mishmash of related ideas. What stands out here? Vision, Statement, Mission, Goals, Organization, Strategic, Planning, Analysis. When planning and strategizing for your entire brand or a specific campaign, all the above come into play. Organization is paramount in moving from planning to developing, and then executing, the strategy. As A.A.

The 3 Most Valuable PR Metrics You’re Probably NOT Measuring

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Guest Post by Brandon Andersen. Attributing bottom-line success to PR activities has always been a tough gig. Unlike online advertising or organic search, where you know what content people clicked and what they did on your site afterward, traffic from PR activities is much harder to identify and track. However, there are some great PR attribution metrics that are often overlooked by PR professionals hidden away in most website analytics platforms like Google Analytics.

Short and Simple Ways of Making Your Instagram Account Boost SEO

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Guest post by Kristen Smith. Instagram has really transformed the world of social media with its visual orientation which has enabled a new generation of users equipped with smartphones to click photos, edit them and upload them to their accounts anywhere and everywhere. The sheer convenience together with the capability of displaying their photographic abilities to the world has enabled Instagram to acquire more than one billion monthly active users.

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Top Digital Customer Experience (CX) Trends for 2019

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Guest Post by Angela White. In the competitive market space within an ever-evolving digital age, prioritizing customer experience is arguably the most efficient way to stand out of the crowd for businesses. With the dawn of a new year and along with it, innumerable opportunities for improvement, the digital customer experience is bound to be a witness to a few significant trends.

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Transformational CSR: When a pro-bono client metamorphizes into a cultural change agent within an agency

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Guest Post by Lisa Holtorf and Dawn Buzynski. For most companies, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) means giving back to the surrounding community. It’s typically done by supporting specific organizations either financially, through time and resources, or both. Companies choose to give because it’s the right thing to do, and it directly impacts the communities in which their employees live and work. For creative marketing agencies, CSR often takes the form of pro-bono services.

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The 4-1-1 on the (Not So) New Marketing Trend: Influencer Marketing

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Guest Post by Dawn Buzynski. If you are a communications pro, I don’t need to tell you that influencer marketing is hot and could soon outpace traditional paid media spend. Everyone is jumping on the influencer marketing bandwagon because it’s all the rage, just like every other fly-by-night new trend. Funny thing is — it’s not really a hot new trend. Influencer marketing has been around for over a decade with the rise in popularity of YouTube.

Top Tips for Handling a PR Crisis

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Guest post by David H Lasker. It takes a business years to build a reputation as trustworthy in the eyes of consumers, but burning it all down can occur in just moments. A high-profile accident, product recall or allegations of illegal activity can cause profound, lasting damage to a company’s good standing in the community. In the age of social media, it’s not unheard of for a business to be held accountable for what one of its employees says online.

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15 Metrics You Should Measure in Content Marketing

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Guest Post by Brandon Brown. Did you know that 47% of B2B marketers and 34% of B2C marketers don’t measure content marketing ROI? And one of the main reasons is that they find it difficult to measure. Another reason why marketers don’t measure content marketing ROI is that they simply don’t know how to do it. The solution to these challenges is identifying the right metrics to measure the ROI of your content marketing and using tools to track these metrics.

Trust Me, I’m a Communicator

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Guest Post by John Friedman. It is a difficult time to be a professional communicator. Trust and credibility are two of the attributes that we rely upon to do our jobs. However, today, accusations of falsehood and deliberate deception are eroding trust in our profession by both those stakeholders we need to do our jobs as well as those we hope to engage in order to provide the maximum value to our companies, organizations or clients.

Cyberbullying: My Week on LinkedIn

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About a week ago, I posited what I thought was a fairly innocuous question on LinkedIn: It got a few interesting responses, which was great; I was, after all, asking a question. That was about a week ago. Suddenly, over this past weekend, the number of views had crossed 10,000. Oh my, I thought to myself. I guess this is hitting a chord with a lot of people. Little did I know just how much.