Tina Cassidy Archive
At the White House correspondents’ dinner, President Obama said, “I remember when BuzzFeed was just something I did in college after 2 a.m.”
Indeed, while the website founded by MIT grad and Huffington Post co-founder Jonah Peretti is 7-years old, until recent months, BuzzFeed might have been something only college students were reading at 2 a.m., searching for LOL cats and photo bombs that they could share on Facebook.
But all that is changing and it feels as if suddenly, BuzzFeed has all the media buzz.
- Propelled by high-profile news events such as the Newtown shooting and Boston Marathon bombings, the site seemed to intuit exactly what readers wanted during and after the crisis and its content was even more viral than usual. In January, the site had about 30 million unique visitors. In April, that number had spiked to 65 million uniques. The New York Times’ website has nearly 29 million monthly uniques.
In the horrifying moments after the Boston Marathon bombings, after ensuring that everyone we knew was safe, we told all clients who might have scheduled tweets to shut them off. Some of them already had and some were shocked that it took almost 20 minutes to finally stop the process.
Thankfully, having a business Twitter blackout has become standard procedure during any crisis because a brand’s social chatter – even if it’s not self-promotional – seems wrong when people are trawling for vital information about breaking news. Going silent is the digital equivalent of giving a fire truck the necessary 500-foot perimeter to do its job. Get out of the way of the #disaster hashtag.
Last month, as I was trawling Twitter, I experienced one of those moments of truth that often lead to a blog post. “Stop the Madness! Why do we spam the crap out of each other #CRE?” It was an excellent question from @TenantAdvisor. His screenshot (above) showed a whole bunch of emails from the real estate world; no doubt property listings or announcements about recent transactions.
This is especially true in the brokerage community, where deal flow means everything, competition is fierce, and an old-school approach to marketing is pervasive. But when everyone else is doing lead generation the same way, namely by email and even cold calls or printed fliers, it is simply not effective, as I explained in a previous post.
First, let me say that doing the Pope’s PR would be a really hard job, even for a Catholic. He’s controversial in some quarters, his audience is spread around the globe, and his message needs to be translated into many languages. Critics also say the Holy See lacks transparency and is clinging to historic doctrine at a time of global social change. But on top of that, its communications methods are quaint: Latin Mass still happens, and news of Pope Francis first went out by smoke signal (ok, that might be more high-tech than you think).
Of course, not all of the church’s problems can be solved by PR. But there are a few obvious communications tactics that could create the perception of real change and perhaps even lead to it.
Today, InkHouse is thrilled to welcome John McElhenny as a vice president. I came to know and respect John many years ago when we covered politics together. He was at the Associated Press at the time. Not only did he always ask sharp questions but he always made his fellow reporters – and sometimes elected officials — crack up from the dry application of his wit.
While InkHouse does not have a “sense of humor test” akin to Google’s famous hiring process, we do screen for likability, brains, innate curiosity and the ability to write well while applying AP style. (A recent piece that he ghost-wrote for a client in a major outlet included references to Magnum, P.I.; Ron Burgundy and Smokey & The Bandit in the same breath.)
The numbers are astounding: Approximately 4,400 apartment and condominium units are under construction in Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville, according to my friend Paul McMorrow, who did the math. But that number is only half of what is in the pipeline in the same geography. From Jackson Square, to Downtown Crossing, the Seaport to Northpoint and Assembly Square, that’s a lot of housing – and it’s a lot to hit the market within a relatively short time period, making the competition for consumer mind-share fierce among developers.
But first, who’s going to live there? Since all of these units are urban, and quite a few will be super-small “micro units,” it’s clear that developers are targeting Millennials, also known as Echo Boomers. There are about 80 million of this cohort in the U.S. Born between 1980 and 1995, they’re the largest population group since the Baby Boomers.
Anyone with a cat (or a kid still under the influence of laughing gas from the dentist) can make a video and receive a lot of hits on YouTube. But there are also a lot of bad videos out there – that might get some hits – but will make you look ridiculous. Not in a good way.
So if you are a business or a mission-focused organization, here are four keys to making a successful viral video.
Our office is working remotely today – as are most – because of the Frankenstorm. With many calls and all in-person meetings cancelled due to the weather, it’s freed up a lot of time to catch up on other assignments.
But in addition to preparing for the storm, it’s also an excellent reprieve to do some serious social media tending, weeding out followers who may no longer seem relevant, adding new ones to the list, writing that blog post we’ve been meaning to write (this will be my third today), connecting with new contacts and groups on LinkedIn, and building out more blog syndication channels (that’s how my morning went thanks to NetworkedBlogs and IFTTT, which is a pretty cool tool that lets one social media push trigger another social media action).