Archive for the ‘News’ Category
Samara Finn, Senior Vice President of online media and influencer relations at Marina Maher Communications, will be a panelist at the #BlogHer15 conference on July 17th in New York City. Samara will share her expertise in building relationships with online content creators and co-creating content. She will also discuss best practices in forging increasingly complex branded content partnerships for marketers and online influencers alike.
Marina Maher Communications Had a Night Filled with Honors at Last Night’s PRSA Silver Anvil and Effie Award ceremonies in New York.
In the last week, chances are someone you know has dumped a bucket of ice over their head to raise awareness for ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). But a week ago you may not have even known what ALS was. This viral initiative has dared hundreds of thousands – perhaps millions — of regular folks as well as many high profile people like Mark Zuckerberg, Jimmy Fallon, the entire New England Patriots football team and Ethel Kennedy to douse themselves with ice water and generated millions of media impressions. Coverage has included leading broadcast and online outlets – even a live on-air accepted challenge from The TODAY Show’s Matt Lauer.
The #IceBucketChallenge was not propelled into the spotlight with the help of a recognizable pharmaceutical company or celebrity endorsement. Rather, the celebrity falls to regular people and patients like 29-year-old Pete Frates, who set the wheels in motion with his own challenge to a few friends and favorite athletes. The rest is history (or on your Facebook newsfeed).
This movement is not without controversy; with many questioning whether participants are only accepting the challenge to be part of the trend. The true test of the #IceBucketChallenge and viral campaigns like it is whether it can span beyond raising awareness and convert social posts to dollar signs for research and truly #StrikeOutALS. According to a recent interview with PRWeek, there have been a flood of donations to ALSA.org, with $5.7M being raised in the last two weeks alone.
Campaigns like this provide inspiration for other diseases that lack a recognizable celebrity advocate, including multiple sclerosis, lupus and mental illnesses. Parkinson ’s disease, for example, has benefitted from high awareness and research funding because of Michael J. Fox’s goal of eliminating the disease “in our lifetime.” The #IceBucketChallenge proved that you don’t need a recognizable face to attract awareness and funding. You just need a great idea that goes viral. #nopressure.
In response to a recent patent filing by Google, a number of online influencers (okay, Search-nerds!) are talking about something we already knew: earned media has a definite impact on organic search rankings.
Like most platform-owners, Google is usually tight-lipped when it comes to the inner mechanics of their algorithm. In the filing, however, a bit of the mystery is revealed: not unlike Facebook, their engine favors high- over low-quality sites. Anytime a brand (or company) is featured in a story on high-quality site, Google counts it as an “implied link.” The more links, the better the ranking.
Reacting to what many are calling an “inadvertent leak,” one watcher stated that “this single-handedly validates all of the PR that you’ve generated for your brand, all of the mentions and citations that you’ve accrued through hard work, great products and reputation, and effective public relations, even if you didn’t necessarily get an explicit link in the coverage.”
In short, PR is the new SEO.
So, if Google views media placements as “implied links,” how do we know whether or not the mentions we’ve secured through “earned” are having an impact? For site owners, there are number of tools that can provide the answer, the simplest (and most common) of which is Google Analytics.
If you’d like to see how many links point to a particular website, or if you’d just like to give Google’s algorithm a kick, try this hack: enter “links:www.sitename.com” into the search bar (minus the quotes, and obviously more descriptive than “site name”) and hit enter.
In case you missed it, Vine has just pushed a rather interesting update that introduces a new feature – Vine Messages – to their platform.
In a nutshell, Vine Messages (or VMs) enables video conversations – one-to-one or one-to-many – with other Vine users. The option can be found in the app’s navigation menu: to send a VM, simply go to the “Messages” screen or tap the “Message” button on a user profile – it’s that simple.
Now here’s where it gets interesting…
VMs aren’t limited to one’s Vine contacts: anyone can send a VM to anyone via email or SMS, even if they’re not part of the Vine community. Seems like an interesting way to engage our followers, crowdsource feedback, invite non-Vine users to connect, etc.
On the flip-side, having the service “open to all” could have darker implications… something to keep an eye on for sure.
This year’s ePharma Summit continued to bring out the best and brightest of the industry to share successes, exchange best practices, and talk about some of the new opportunities that exist where the worlds of digital and healthcare meet.
An exciting technology that presents lots of opportunity for Pharma is wearables. These devices, which range from the almost ubiquitous FitBit, Jawbone, and Nike Fuelband, all the way to Google Glass and the Google contact lens that can detect glucose levels in tears, have been around for a few years, but are really starting to become more mainstream. They were all the rage at the Consumer Electronics Show, too. Wearables are turning people into data centers, with a constant stream of information generated daily. Pharma is in a unique position to help make that data meaningful for patients, doctors and research.
While the future value of wearables in healthcare are yet to be fully realized, ZocDoc took a stab at predicting the future:
Wearable tech – An infographic by the team at ZocDoc
At the ePharma Summit there was lots of speculation about the use of wearables– and the data they generate– in health management, adherence, insurance and treatment. While the verdict is out on how to capitalize on this data and technology, this is an area that MMC, and all of Pharma, is going to be following closely. It represents an area for the courageous Pharma executive to lead.