New Media in PR

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A longitudinal study done by PRSA shows that new media has changed the game that is public relations.

This study showed that PR practitioners have changed as new media has, but their methods have not adapted as quickly. The study has shown the practitioners feel they should measure the amount of information instead of the impact, because analytics are complicated and are not conclusive about impact.

How do you think the new media will change in the next ten years? Will analytics ever catch up?

It is Easier to Scam the Elderly

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A new study, presented by NPR, shows that adults over the age of 55 do not recognize untrustworthy cues in someone's body language.

In a study of 119 adults over the age off 55, they scored significantly lower than adults in their 20s.

AARP also did a study of fraud victims, and out of 723 victims found that the average age was 69.

Why is this?

Some say it is because older adults have a decrease in the part of their brain that processes risk. This could be because of a need to see life as more positive later in life.


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GALLUP is the rockstar of the research world. They have information about everything and anything. And they are great at figuring out how to apply their research and turn it into dollar signs.

One of the ways they are using their research is with StrengthsQuest 2.0.

Strengths, for short, is a 30 minute assessment that has helped over 8 million people discover their talents. The assessment asks you polarized questions that evolve based on your answers. You only have a few seconds to answer each question, so the answers are not thought out, but are a gut reaction.

Many schools and companies use Strengths to engage students and employees in doing what they do best everyday.

The University of Minnesota allows all of their incoming students to take Strengths. There is a well thought out and integrated curriculum around Strengths that really digs deep into how students function. Because of this, the U is one of GALLUP's top 25 Strengths Schools.

My Top 5 are Input, Communication, Strategic, Achiever, and Learner. This means I do best when I can collect information, swish it around in my brain for a while, and then create a plan with several different paths and explain and implement that plan.

Online Focus Groups

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Focus Groups.

My personal favorite in the world of research. So much depth and insight into how people actually feel about a topic can be gained through them.

Can an online version be the same?

My answer would be no, but I do think it could be interesting to reach more people in this style of research. More people means a broader understanding.

There are several companies capitalizing on this very concept including 20/20 and Goodmind.

I think they can be effective, but nothing will ever beat face-to-face interaction and conversation in my mind.


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Mintel is a research company that creates research reports on a wide variety of markets.

They do the research up front, you browse through their selection of thousands and thousands of report offerings, cough up a few thousand for access to the full report, and then you have all of the research you could ever want on plus sized teen girls that shop for jeans in the month of October.

How can this information be insightful for a company? How much could this information tell them about a subset of people? Is this the safest, most economical way to gather this research?

Richness in Electronic Mail

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We send and receive hundreds of emails throughout our weeks. But how much of that is worthwhile information?

This study published in MIS Quarterly way back in June of 1997, when email was just a toddler, explains how electronic mail can be used to create trust within organizations.

This study also poses new social communication theories that helped people to better understand how to effectively communicate through a digital interface.

Making Money Via Social Media

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This new survey explores companies ROI from investing in social media activities and advertising.


The votes are in, and it appears that engaging with customers on social media is a profitable pastime for companies.

Pinterest Analytics

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Analytics is the big word in web research. And Pinterest is the big word in social media these days. So how do the two combine?

Well, to put it bluntly, they don't.

The very nature of the beast that is Pinterest makes it very difficult to gauge how successful any particular pin is, or who is seeing it. Sure, you can tell how many people have repinned or like a pin, but millions more could have come in contact with it, clicked the link, or pinned it to a secret board; all things that are impossible to track.

Services such as Pinerly and Pinreach try their best to make some sense of the pinning landscape, but they don't offer information that could not have been collected manually, as explained here.

With Pinterest's new business accounts analytics might make new leaps, but only time will tell.

Whoever can come up with an effective and useful system of Pinterest analytics will be one financially fit individual. The race is on.

Tracking Personal Media

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Creating a strong personal brand if very important.

Employers, organizations, and media persons will likely Google you to see what they find. And they better find what you want them to!

Managing accounts on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, FourSquare, and Instagram (oh my!) can be time consuming and difficult. And how can you even tell if you are being successful in your branding pursuit? Who is looking at your content anyway?

This blog post lists some excellent sources to utilize in tracking your personal brand.

Customer Service Online

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In today's digital world people want to be able to interact with their favorite brands and companies online. And that includes complaining.

A recent survey done by Genesys found that over half of Fortune 500 companies are "socially shy", as Forbes reports. Yet, 90% of these companies do not post email addresses of their employees online for customers to reach out.

What gives?

How can this "social shyness" hurt companies, and what is a way they can overcome their fears of the social sphere online?