Kicked off with an eye on being a traffic puller to various blogs via links, guest blogging is now facing harsh criticism by Google Webspam head Matt Cutts over its transformation into a spam practice and link-building technique. Some of us might disagree with him but if we step into Matt Cutts’ shoes, maybe we would know how tough it gets for him to pass on the company’s unpopular policies and bear the brunt of subsequent criticism from the opposing end. Frankly speaking, his recent tweet stating, ‘Stick a fork in it, Guest blogging is done!’ definitely comes out as legitimate.
PR is extremely important for success; a good PR campaign can boost your profile, whereas a poor one can cause considerable loss for your venture. Having a good PR team can make a world of difference by effectively timing the campaign and sending across a strong message to the targeted audience. This has been amply demonstrated in differing fortunes of the recently concluded Delhi Vidhan Sabha elections.
Consider the situation last summer: BJP-led NDA had just stormed to a landmark victory in the Lok Sabha elections. The other parties were nowhere to be seen – AAP was licking its wounds, and Congress was in absolute tatters.Delhi had been under theGovernor’s rule ever since AAP’s infamous AK49 fiasco. Arvind Kejriwal’s resignation from the post of New Delhi’s Chief Minister was a very ill-timed, extremely negative PR move which not only dented his party’s prospects in the Lok Sabha elections, but also led to a major loss of goodwill amongst the masses. Any PR executive worth his salt would tell you the time was ripe for BJP to pounce in for the kill. So, as we analyse the aftermath of AAP’s resounding victory in the elections, where exactly did everything go wrong for BJP, and how did AAP manage to turn the tide around? The answer to both the questions would be the same – the PR campaign.
A friend of mine once commented that PR business is a dog’s work – you get blasted by your clients, kicked by your bosses, hassled by your colleagues and turned down by the journalists; in the PR industry the good that you do is only fleeting, but your failures haunt you forever. When queried upon why he continued with the profession despite all the problems, he dragged on a cigarette butt with all the concentration of a meditating sage before responding with, “If I don’t do it, someone else will.”
His remark had a ring of truth to it; Delhi alone has so many PR agencies and freelance PR executives within its bordersthat their combined population might outnumberthe Grand Duchy of Luxembourgthree times over.His comment, however, made me wonder about a few things;why would someone be willing to go through so much trouble for a pay-check or a payment from the client, and why were so many people willing to do it? Moreover, as a naturally reticent individual, I wondered if it was really required. After all, why would you need to scream over the rooftopsabout your work if you’re giving first-rate, superior service? Any prospective consumer would look for quality, and as long as you keep providing high-quality end-product spending extra does not come into the picture.
Working in a PR agency is a tough ask; you have to listen to the clients’ ranting and the journalists’ scoffing almost on a daily basis, and are still expected to work with a smile. It is a female-dominated industry (one of the reasons I joined); women excel at socialising, organising andcategorising (whereas men excel at belching, particularly after a few drinks). No wonder you won’t find many men here; given the amount of pressure PR executives are subject to, most men would either take up drinking or take up a gun (or in some rare cases both) to relieve the tension.It’s a man’s world, goes the cliché; however, the rules of the outer world do not apply in the PR industry, as I came to know unfortunately one fine afternoon.
“Men!” said Sonal. Recently married, she had been patiently advising all her unmarried soul-sisters of the pros and cons of marriage (which was at that point heavily tilted in favour of the latter) during the lunch break. “It is impossible to live with them.”
If you’re into Internet Marketing, you have probably heard a few things about Growth Hacking and how it helped startups and Internet companies with skyrocketing success. If you, too, wish to take full advantage of a rather complex web world, you should probably know much more than you think you need to.
Did you ever give Growth Hacking a serious thought? If you are an Internet Marketer or are planning an Internet start up, there are 100% chance you will do it after reading this blog post!
What is Growth Hacking?
There is nothing new about growth hacking; it is a term used to describe techniques marketers around the world have been using to promote startups for years. However, it is significantly different from tried and tested traditional marketing methods. It heavily draws from technology, is highly technology dependent unlike some traditional marketing tools and focuses on building a large fan/user base at a very fast rate.
Ever since my childhood, I would rush to meet the newspaper vendor just as he entered my compound every day, snatch the paper from him to see what funny ad Amul had created for that day. For me and many more across the country, the Amul girl with her hip polka-dotted dress and hair clip became synonymous with witty news deliverance. The ads commented on every social and political issue, yet remained neutral in their approach to things. All they cared about was butter.
“Hello Mr.IPC? Our coverage had appeared in ABC Times yesterday, but we haven’t received clippings yet.”
“We sent that yesterday only!”
*we frantically check our mail for the clipping*
“Mr.IPC, it’s not there. Can you resend the mail again?”
Four hours later, still no mail.
Every PR agency faces this problem; every PR Executive has fought with their tracking agency guys at least once and so have we. Almost every day someone from our team calls our tracking agency and rues over missed coverage. No amount of arguing, threatening or reasoning ensures that we get our clippings on time. Every morning we come and scan the newspapers in the hope of good coverage like little children rummaging for candy in a sack. Oh the joy!
Douse and Donate
For the past few weeks, social media has been awash with videos of people dousing themselves with ice water to raise awareness for ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) or Lou Gehrig’s disease. Last week Team GreenThumbwas nominated for the challenge’s Indian counterpart, the Rice Bucket Challenge by the social media team of our parent company Grasshoppers.
Instead of pouring a bucket of ice water on your head, you donate a bucket of rice – cooked or uncooked – to a needy person.
Operation RFC India 101
Our agency recently executed the PR Campaign for an amazing event, the Force Gurkha RFC India 2014.