August 31, 2010

Jack Leslie - the PR Landscape In South Africa

Jack Leslie, Chairman, Weber Shandwick discusses the PR landscape in South Africa with Senior Strategist Josh Gilbert.

(full interview - video below)

Senza Tempo - a film by Gabriele Muccino & Peroni Nastro Azzurro

Peroni Nastro Azzurro has partnered with award-winning Italian film director Gabriele Muccino to create Accademia del Film. The Italian film 'academy' aims to promote the iconic world of Italian film in the UK by celebrating the principles that have made and continue to make the Italian craft of film-making so unique, such as its rich heritage, passion and flair for aesthetic narrative.

The Accademia del Film Peroni Nastro Azzurro is brought to life by this bespoke short film director by Muccino - 'Senza Tempo' - which exemplifies the passion and attention to detail that Italian film-makers put into their craft.

August 30, 2010

Kiwi! When the End is only the Beginning!

"All the breaks you need in life wait within your imagination. Imagination is the workshop of your mind, capable of turning mind energy into accomplishment and wealth." - Napoleon Hill

Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try. Video below (Kiwi) tells a story - if you want something strongly enough, you will achieve it.
Keep It Short & Simple (KISS): When there is a will, there is a way!

(motivation video - watch below)

August 29, 2010

What is the story behind "Twitter Fail Whale"?

The image of the "Twitter Fail Whale" has a creative story behind, as "Twitter Fail Whale" means ... "lifting a dreamer".

The whale is a happy thought. The biggest dream you can't achieve. The love that the designer wanted to give her friends when she was unable to visit their Birthday parties. It's a creative idea, isn't it?

Yiying Lu, the designer of "Twitter Fail Whale", talks about the story behind social media's most iconic error message.

(full interview - video below)

August 27, 2010

What is the role of PR?

Public Relations brings value to Business Communications. Successful management of Internal and External Communications results in positive corporate image and reputation.

How PR people perceive the value of their job?

Hear DC area Public Relations professionals share their views on the value of Public Relations. Appearing in this video are PRSA-NCC Board and Committee members Aaron Ellis, Brigitte Johnson, Robert Udowitz, Rebecca Andersen, Heathere Evans-Keenan, Suzanne Holroyd, Sylvia Aguilera, Jeff Ghannam, Amie Hornbaker, Fred Whiting, Michael Sheward, and Amy Robinson.

Video below premiered at the PRSA-NCC Thoth Awards on September 24, 2009.

August 25, 2010

Digital Influence Index - Canada

"When Canadians find information online, it's more likely to lead them to conclusions."
- Michael von Herff, Regional Director, Canada, Fleishman-Hillard

6 Drivers of Digital Influence

  1. Speak at the masses one at a time
  2. Share your values
  3. Be on the tips of the fingers
  4. Use authentic voice
  5. People like people like them
  6. Take the best of the new PR tools & the best of the old PR tools - make them into something enduring and ultimately powerful!
(full interview - video below)

How far does your Creativity go?

This film is part of a integrated campaign for Panamericana School of Art and Design, created by Andre Godoi and Andre Gola, from AlmapBBDO.

Video shows - Creativity is attitude! Creativity is inspiration!

Digital Influence Index - London

Dean Russell, Director at Fleishman-Hillard Digital talks about the influence of the web.

Advice for PR people:

Understand the process of how people use the web, how they engage with it in their busy lifestyles!

(full interview - video below)

August 16, 2010

Change Management - Who Moved My Cheese?


Being good at change is a competitive advantage of a company or a person. In order to be good at change you need to know what change is and how it happens.

Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life by Spencer Johnson is a story on how we deal with change, as the four characters are parts of all of us. "Cheese" is whatever you want at work or in life. Sometimes in order to succeed you need to go out of your comfort zone, to go into an area where you have never been before to find new opportunities and achieve your goals.
5 Phases of Change
Phase 1 First shock
Phase 2 Provisional adjustment
Phase 3 Inner contradictions
Phase 4 Inner crisis
Phase 5 Re-construction & recovery

These are the most common 5 Phases people go through as they encounter professional or personal life change. As people have different personalities & life experience, it’s not necessary that everyone goes through all 5 Phases in the same way.
5 Tips on Change Management
  1. The more important cheese is to you the more you want to hold on to it.
  2. What would you do if you weren't afraid?
  3. When you move beyond your fear, you feel FREE!
  4. When you change what you believe, you change what you do.
  5. Adapt to change quickly, the quicker you let go of old cheese, the sooner you can enjoy new cheese.
"Who Moved My Cheese" ... the movie on Change Management
(video below)

August 15, 2010

To get an MBA or NOT - Guy Kawasaki

The only way to learn how to manage is to manage! Great advice from Guy Kawasaki at the Stanford University!

(video below)

In order to succeed you need to have a great idea, to make meaning, make a difference and strive to make the world a better place! Video below presents a great advice from Guy Kawasaki.

(video below)

How to Think With a Hat?


Edward De Bono‘s concept on lateral thinking and its efficient application in multiple business situations has received worldwide acceptance and popularity. According to Edward De Bono a creative idea must have value. Just being different for the sake of being different is not creativity.

Edward De Bono’s Six Thinking Hats method provides the means of addressing one of our most challenging and "lowest hanging of fruits" - Meetings. Meetings are sometimes insufficiently focused and can consume more time than we'd like.

Benefits of Six Thinking Hats

  1. Smooth planning
  2. Focus & a clear thinking agenda
  3. A strategic planning process expedited with great efficiency

Before making a decision, you need to think with all of the Six Hats!

"What's behind different Thinking Hats?" (video below)

Creative Fire Animation


August 14, 2010

What Color is Your Brand

  • Color is a powerful branding tool
  • Color enables brand recognition
  • Color evokes emotion
The question is NOT
"What's your favorite color?"

The question IS
"What color best expresses your Personal Brand Attributes?"

(video below)

August 12, 2010

Evian Roller Babies - Live Young

Let's observe the effect of water on your body - Great message!
This Ad does not promote a product, it promotes common values:

Everybody wants to live young!

(video below)

Successful Ad - Makes You Feel Good


How do you define a successful ad campaign?

A Successful Ad:

  • Makes you laugh
  • Has a catchy jingle
  • Is memorable

A Successful Ad is based on:

  • Creative Idea
  • Communication Objective
  • Engaging & Involving Message

A Successful Ad just Makes You Feel Good!

(video below makes you feel good)

Edward Bernays on Public Relations

Edward Bernays is called the Father of Spin (The Father of Spin: Edward L. Bernays and The Birth of Public Relations by Larry Tye) because of his great contribution to the development of the Public Relations profession. Bernays was wise enough to:
  • link democracy to business
  • to shape the new mentality of America
  • to transform the way Americans thought about products
The success of his PR campaigns was based on tactics that influenced the subconscious mind and made people buy products to satisfy their only need of feeling better.

Bernays made smoking cigarettes socially acceptable, through the idea that cigarettes for women were a form of liberation, a sign of the new, free woman. The cigarettes were "torches of freedom," a new step in the march towards equality of the sexes.

(full story - video below)

August 10, 2010

What is it like Being a Student Today?

Students today - how we learn, what we need to learn, our goals, hopes, dreams, what our lives will be like, and what kinds of changes we will experience in our lifetime.

A Vision of Students Today (video below)

Have your own goal, do not be afraid to be different, because when there is a will, there is a way! "One doesn't discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time."(Andre Gide)

"Be the change you want to see in the world."(Mahatma Gandhi)
You need to be pro-active in order to succeed.

If not Now, then When? If not You, then Who?

MAC vs PC - PR lady

To talk as a PR ...

PR vs Journalism - Roles We Play!

When you call yourself a PR or a Journalist what role do you play?

Produced for the Public Relations Society of America's National Capital Chapter's 2007 Annual Thoth Awards Gala, these Mac/PC Spoof Commercials personify the battle between Public Relations (PR) and Journalism (and the Media/Press).

Steve Jobs - Stanford University Commencement Address

The best commencement speech & the most motivational address to ALL recent graduates! Steve Jobs' Stanford Commencement address is as powerful NOW as it was back then in 2005!

(watch video below)

August 08, 2010

Choosing a Career

Success can be very subjective.
Success is knowing your purpose of life and purpose gives stability. Successful people discovered their own purpose. Life is not to "go out of Graduate school and join the crowd" or be what you are expected to be. "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." (George Bernard Shaw)

Watch below a creative description of the path to success

Richard Branson says that conventional wisdom of most business schools is "specialize in one area". Will graduate school teach you business values such as creativity & innovation?

Learn the business secrets of Richard Branson (video below)

Choosing a Career
"What are you expected to be?" vs. "What do you want to be?"

Donald Trump's advice on choosing a career (video below)

August 07, 2010

5 Tips - Avoid Common Measurement Mistakes

  1. Focus on measurable objectives at the beginning
  2. Develop a dialog with stakeholders through a social media program (this way you can measure the volume of dialogue + tone & quality of conversations online
  3. Measure impact of the organization's objectives - not just the program objectives (counting the number of followers is not enough, measure the changes of perceptions based on online dialog)
  4. Measure the media impact on referrals, customer loyalty, business leads - thus you will be able to prove the value of PR
  5. Measure during the program, not just at the end

Evidence - Based Communications

1. Development (beginning)
All components of the communications program to be justified by evidence, not by guesswork

2. Monitoring (on-going)

3. Measurement (end)
Programs to be measured against organization's objectives (sales, votes, transactions), not just tactics (media hits, reach)

August 06, 2010

"Senza Tempo" Ad - Love Story of a Beer Brand

“Senza Tempo” or “Timeless” in English is a cinema ad directed by Gabriele Muccino (the director of ‘The Pursuit of Happyness' and 'Seven Pounds'). The stylish ad set in Rome tells the sad love story of a heartbroken director.

Although the ad does not mention the Italian beer brand, we notice product placement - camera shots of Peroni. The ad features Peroni bottle's iconic blue ribbon, a brand symbol used in previous ad campaigns.

Muccino said: "It is my pleasure to be working with a brand which is defined by similar values and shares my love of Italian film, through the ‘Peroni Nastro Azzurro Accademia del Film’ – a hugely worthwhile endeavour to share the values at the core of Italian film."

This article was first published on

August 03, 2010

Creativity Can Come From Anywhere

...including Post-It notes.

What Makes a Great Story?

Obviously a great story can take you anywhere ...

What Leads to Success?

  1. Passion
  2. Work ("They are not workaholics, they are workafrolics!")
  3. Focus
  4. Persist
  5. Ideas
  6. Good
  7. Push
  8. Serve

"I hate Mondays" - the name of Ineffective Internal Communications

  • what needs to be communicated to staff

  • when it should be communicated

  • how it should be communicated

Problems in Internal Communications

1. If I know it, then everyone must know it. Leaders' and managers' assumption that because they know some information, than everyone else knows it, too. Usually staff aren't aware.

2. We hate bureaucracy - we're "lean and mean." Increasing confusion may be caused when there are no archives of communication practices within the company.

3. I told everyone, or some people, or ...? Managers assume that communication just happens; as a result they're not aware of what they told to whom.

4. Did you hear what I meant for you to hear? Diverse workforce needs specific communication approach so that all employees understand the same information in the same way.

5. Our problems are too big to have to listen to each other!

6. So what's to talk about?

7. If I need your opinion, I'll tell it to you. Without constant feedback, management can’t control the stability of the internal company climate and job performance.

Result of Ineffective Internal Communications
(video below)

"I love Mondays" - the name of Effective Internal Communications


How to build Internal Communications?

Downward Communications:

1. Every employee needs to be aware of the organization's:

  • mission

  • vision

  • values

  • goals

2. Create a standard operating manual.

3. Hold regular management meetings - have meetings anyway in order to establish communication that there are no immediate problems.

4. Leaders and managers should have face-to-face contact with employees at least once a week.

5. Celebrate major accomplishments. This gives employees a sense of direction and fulfillment, and let's them know that leadership is on top of things.

6. All employees need to receive yearly performance reviews (goals for the year, updated job descriptions, accomplishments, needs for improvement, and plans to help the employee accomplish the improvements). Develop a career plan for each employee.

Upward Communications:

1. All employees need to give regular status reports to their supervisors.

2. Supervisors need to meet one-on-one once a month with their employees to discuss how it’s going. Such meetings cultivate an important relationship between supervisor and employee.

3. Solicit feedback. Ask how it's going.

4. Act on feedback from others.

5. Respect the "grapevine" - one of the most reliable forms of communication. Major "movements" in the organization first appear when employees feel it safe to venture their feelings or opinions to peers.

Basic Communications Plan

  • What are the key messages you want to convey?

  • To what key stakeholders do you want to convey the key messages?

  • Identify the best approach to reach each key stakeholder?

  • How will you know if you're reaching these stakeholders or not?

Result of Effective Internal Communications
(video below)

August 01, 2010

How to Inspire Customers - Lego for Grown-ups

Build a brand, create emotions, involve customers, promote values instead of products. Produce brand identity instead of product packages... take a look at this inspiring and absolutely successful case study - Lego for Grown-ups!
Video says it all!

What is Public Relations?



Public Relations is the practice of creating, promoting, or maintaining goodwill and a favourable image among the public towards a company, product, person. Public Relations - the condition of the relationship between an organization and the public.

How to create publicity?

1. Write your positioning statement

2. List your objectives

3. Identify your target customers

4. Identify your target media

5. Develop story angles

6. Put your thoughts on paper

7. Follow up

Creative Definition (video below)