Monday, August 18, 2014

At CNBC, the medium is the message

Posted by Greg Matusky
AS SEEN ON TV: Appearances on business TV are worth a
a great deal for your product, service, or investment.
Will an appearance on CNBC, FOX Business, or other business TV networks spike a stock price or drive demand for a product? Probably not. But if leveraged properly, it can be worth its weight in gold.

Last year, we secured scores and scores of appearances on CNBC, Fox Business, and Bloomberg TV for our clients. Still, such a rush to coverage always raises the specter of, "What is all this worth? How valuable is someone’s five minutes of fame among the non-stop talking heads and barrage of market opinion and analysis by an endless stream of commentators?"

Well, it turns out, it’s worth a great deal. Maybe not in the fleetingness of the appearance - which can easily get lost in the 24-hour news cycle -but rather the real value comes from how an appearance or series of appearances can push forward a narrative, build credibility, and differentiate a product, service, or investment opportunity from a crowded field of competitors. Here’s how:

Advancing the narrative. Storytelling is among the most powerful means of human communications. Stories hang in human memory. They trump fact and features. They seed meaning and affect decision-making. And they can impose discipline on an organization. Effective three minute storytelling is a learned art, often mastered in the pressure cooker of media training leading up to a TV appearance. It’s here where many clients crystallize their thoughts and distill the essence of their message. That exercise alone is valuable, but then distributing it on national TV amplifies it, not just for viewers, but also for employees, partners, and shareholders who can view it over time, thanks to the miracle of Internet.

Monday, August 11, 2014

If it bleeds, it leads

Posted by Greg Matusky
The old newspaper adage has more to do with us than with journalism. At least that’s one conclusion from Abundance: The Future is  Better than You Think. The 2012 book by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kolter. Diamandis is an engineer, physician, entrepreneur, and founder and chairman of the X PRIZE Foundation. I had been meaning to read his book for some time, and a recent remote working assignment away from the office gave me the perfect excuse.

Abundance presents a rare, positive look at our future and at how much progress our civilization has made, particularly in the past 50 years. It all goes under-reported, though, because Diamandis believes we are predisposed to negative biases by a primitive structure in our brain that is ever vigilant, searching for danger above all else. No matter the good, it’s our brain that allows the bad to dominate our attention, much of which is focused by the media.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Philly’s top PR firm lists most incendiary tech media

Posted by Greg Matusky
We call them the incendiary media, those tech publications that might not have the name cache of a Wall Street Journal or Wired magazine, but bring with them the ability to stoke national interest in a technology -- be it a consumer gadget or an enterprise solution. They tend to be read by the real technology enthusiasts, influencers, or other media as well as society as a whole. Many of them top our priority lists of target media. Incendiary in that they have the ability to spark interest and awareness in surprising ways:

Monday, July 21, 2014

Philly’s top PR firm gives advice to recent grads

Posted by Greg Matusky
Perhaps it’s something in the water, or maybe universities are just doing a better job of preparing graduates for the world of public relations, but our Junior Associate class of summer 2014 is turning out to be the strongest we’ve ever hosted here at Gregory FCA.

Each summer, we bring in eight to 12 Junior Associates as either college juniors or post grad candidates as paid members of the Gregory FCA team. It’s a great way to experience the industry and this year’s class is knocking our socks off with their attitude, aptitude, and aspiring altitudes and expectations for their careers.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

What if the aliens are already among us? When computers revolt

Posted by Greg Matusky
COMPUTERS: Are they becoming more like humans? 
I have been working a lot lately in some pretty funky technologies -- quantum computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other stuff I don’t fully understand, but somehow manage to write about and promote.

One of my most brilliant clients, Stephen DeAngelis at Enterra Solutions recently wrote a blog post for Scientific America where he considers where all this is headed and the threat that self-aware computers might pose to human beings. As he points out, self-aware computing has been the subject of any number of Hollywood movies, starting with HAL from a 2001:Space Odyssey up to and including Skynet from The Terminator. He tends to think that computing has a long way to go before computers can view themselves as beings with all the nuance, understandings and foibles of human beings.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Why Fox is the most trusted news source in the country and MSNBC is the least

Posted by Greg Matusky
TRUSTED NEWS: Recent survey finds Fox News
most trusted source, MSNBC the least.
Outrageous. A sham. Totally biased.  Bad data. Disgraceful. That just might be your response to a recently publicized survey that found Fox News to be the most trusted news source in America, while MSNBC to be the least. In fact, an astounding 25 percent of respondents cited Fox as the most trusted source, while only 10 percent said that MSNBC was their most trusted news source.

Friday, June 20, 2014

One company’s prescription for failure or why I don’t know what I am talking about

Posted by Greg Matusky
Perhaps my biggest joy of being in public relations is that every day, I am fortunate to work with a different business that views the world in a unique light and can offer new insights and learnings that I can use to grow as a professional. 

And then, there are the others. Companies locked in their own desperate struggle with the same old, same old. Unwilling to listen or to change, they defend the status quo out of a misplaced notion that change acknowledges some failure of the past.

Take last week, when I was summonsed to a sales call by a technology provider that really had no interest in learning anything new, and went out of their way to let me know it, challenging and criticizing my every recommendation. They showed a stunning lack of awareness of contemporary public relations and communications, all the while contending they knew it all. They obsessed on the inconsequential, while dismissing imperatives. At one point, debating the role of magic in marketing. Man, I wish that was a joke!

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