Real Time PR – Hit the ground running

Last week we focussed on how your company can harness UGC to bolster your corporate culture and satisfy consumer desires to be a part of the stage show that is PR and marketing. Today, we discuss another way of using relevant information to satisfy the societal desire for immediacey:


We’ve seen how not-for-profit organisations have utilized this method to communicate their messages and results via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. But how do we as profit-making corporations, benefit from this quick and snappy technique?

One trick, is to ride the curtails of an event.

Oreo was showered in glory when their single tweet during the 2013 Super Bowl Sunday black-outs got a laugh…or ten thousand re-tweets to be exact.

Punchy. And delicious.

Regardless of the black-outs, the 2013 Super Bowl was reported to have still had the second largest audience in 27 years.Reuters estimated that advertisers paid an average of $4 million for a 30-second spot during the game. Oreo did this also, however it’s safe to say their off-the-cuff tweet has left a longer lasting impression than any commercial that comes on while Super Bowl fans are up getting another beer from the fridge.

I don’t know about you, but I hate commercials.

I do however LOVE TO TWEET.

Especially during a high stakes football game. If you can capture the some of the attention of that devoted audience for less than a few million, I’d say it’s a success. They were dubbed the big winners of this year’s sporting-spectacular by the Wall Street Journal

Stunts such as this, if you can pull them off, have an added element of credibility (and they’re free!). It shows that you’re tuned into the same media channels as your consumers.

Thinking on your feet and keeping up with the current hot topics being discussed right now will score you big points and big re-tweets. This is the modern chit-chat that will create the “social buzz” we’re all scrambling for in this industry.

Don’t waste another minute wondering where your audience came from and where they’re headed.



UGC: Instagram savvy PR in Web 2.0

With social media increasingly permeating our lifestyles, consumers are gravitating towards more “Natural Search” methods of finding and absorbing information. Why read a big block of text when a picture paints a thousand words?

If Instagram‘s most recent Press Site statistics updates are anything to go by, 2013 is shaping up to be


– In April 2012, the image sharing app boasted 40 million users.

– In January 2013, 90 million(it seems reports of changes in their terms of service made in December didn’t result in the #instadoom as predicted by some. The Verge has a great piece on what the changes really mean).

– Today, the number stands at 100 million.

That’s a consumer data base, dripping in UGC, that should get NGO PR Pros salivating.

User Generated Content is a fierce driving force behind Web 2.0 PR campaigns. It’s plucking consumers off their chairs and placing them on the brand name stage. These are the products they want, this is the world they want to be a part of.

Marc Jacobs (not to be confused with Marc by Marc Jacobs) was fashionably ahead of the UGC trends in 2011.

Screen shot 2013-04-10 at 3.40.33 PM

The fashion brand embraced their online community by asking them to contribute their holiday snaps to the trend #MarcFam. Consumers could then see their own happy snaps collaborated into a collage on the MarcFam website; a virtual catwalk for the fashion savvy. Old example? The hashtag is still trending on Instagram today, upwards of 4500 photos.

Our own Sarah Wilson has also jumped on the UGC bandwagon to promote her “I Quit Sugar” recipe books.


The IQS Instagram account routinely uses images of recipes made by followers, tagged with #IQS, in conjunction with Sarah’s own images of book releases and media appearances.

UGC marketing on Instagram plays to the Gen Y “goldfish” attention spans of us all. Whilst nurturing a culture of listening, a company can showcase products in a way that is valid to their consumers’ lifestyles. This clip discusses the benefits of presenting information to people in a valid form (I had to watch it twice, I got distracted).

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”; frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>

Utilizing and evaluating (Statigram and Simply Measured offer analytic tools for this) UGC in your Instagram campaigns with consumer images is a way of building respect within your publics.

Basically, it shows that you care! It shows that your company is no longer a hidden corporate body behind a shiny logo, but a team of active individuals building a company that is responsive and reactive to their consumers.

This is a mindset that will build brand loyalty. This is an initiative that will sell me your new release high tops. I look forward to seeing myself wearing them on your website soon!

– Thanks for reading, love to hear your thoughts on this piece. Comment away folks.