Writing Sample - Social Media
Background: I wrote the below social media content for former client NTT America (wholly-owned subsidiary of NTT Group, one of the world's leading telecommunications carriers). This was part of a media campaign. I posted all of the below on the client’s behalf.
NTT America is at Channel Partners Evolution in Washington, D.C. today discussing the successes of its Channel Partner Program. Highlights include: strong sales, 100+ new sub-agents, collaboration with Fluent Edgeworks & new spiff award [Link to release]
NTT America is at Channel Partners Evolution in Washington, D.C. today celebrating the successes of its Channel Partner Program. Highlights include: strong sales, 100 +new sub-agents, partnership with Fluent Edgeworks & new spiff award [Link to release]
Twitter (M, T, W, Th, F)
We’re at #CPEvolution celebrating our Channel Partner Program’s 2 year anniversary! Read about goals and successes here: [PR LINK]
We partnered w/Fluent to help a global consumer #tech co deploy a unified, scalable global network. Find out more: [PR LINK]
Channel Program highlights incl: 100+ new sub-agents, 30% plus increase in contracts secured by sub-agents! [PR LINK]
From consistent strong sales to closing a multi-million-dollar opp, our #channel program has a lot to celebrate! #CPEvolution [PR LINK]
New security services award, including spiff payouts of up to $25,000, are just a few perks of our #channel program. Read more: [PR LINK]
Writing Sample - Blog Post
Dear Taylor Swift, Thanks for the Social Media Marketing Lesson
Before social media, public relations was ironically not so great at actually relating to the public. It was almost one-sided. Brands had a corporate spokesperson pushing the company line, as they say, and maybe a newsletter and that was it. Of course, those who didn’t agree with the brand could always protest or pen the occasional strongly worded letter to voice their opinions, but who has time for that today?
Last month, Wireside attended an AMA luncheon at the University of Richmond where Natalia Dykyj, Director of Product Management, Cision, gave a brief presentation on how PR and marketing have changed from the “old-school” way of doing things through the influence of social media marketing. In this post, I’ve outlined a few of Natalia’s key points, supplemented with some real-world examples of marketing success stories.
Today, the consumer wears the pants in the relationship and the brand can very easily, and often does, end up in the proverbial doghouse. The power of social media (and an angry mob, albeit a virtual one) can greatly impact a brand’s choice – and fast. A very recent example of this comes to mind. Apple recently released a music streaming service so new users can stream music for the first three months of their trial period for free. This seemed like a great idea, until music artists realized they wouldn’t be paid for their music to be streamed for the trial period. Taylor Swift wrote an open letter to the company voicing her opinion on this, saying that it is unfair to not pay artists for their work and that maybe Apple shouldn’t get access to her next album. Uh-oh. Less than a day later, Apple changed its policy, agreeing to pay artists during the trial period, and wrote Taylor a mea culpa letter begging for her forgiveness. Of course this particular situation involves a celebrity and one of the most well known brands on the planet, but wouldn’t it be nice if all customer service issues were resolved this way? To be fair, similar interactions can and do happen on a smaller scale.
Marketing: Who’s Doing it Right?
“Brands are lucky if audiences engage them in conversation,” Natalia said.
And she’s right. If, as a brand, no one is engaging with you in some way, you probably need to change your marketing strategy. So who is doing marketing right? Natalia’s first example was Target. Target, she said, has not one, but two official Twitter feeds. The official feed is purely for messaging purposes. This is where the company updates followers on what’s going on with Target, essentially pushing out its desired message to followers. The second feed, however, is conversation-based. This feed is where consumers can voice opinions and ask questions, and Target will talk back. This is a great way to interact with brand followers, involve them and make them feel like they matter; that they have a voice. It’s this kind of open brand participation that helps make loyal brand ambassadors.
Target’s Twitter success had me thinking: What brands have utilized two of the other biggest social media platforms of today, Facebook and Instagram, in a way that set them up for marketing success? Inspiration came from my own personal Facebook and Instagram feeds: Humans of New York and Kayla Itsines.
Humans of New York
Humans of New York is a more unconventional brand in that it began as a photographer telling stories. The photographer, Brandon Stanton, roams through New York City daily, stopping random people of all ages and asking them questions about their lives. He then posts a simple snapshot of the person with a quote from the conversation and posts it to Facebook. He has since expanded to Instagram and Twitter, and has even published a book. By utilizing its Facebook audience (with over 13 million likes), Humans of New York has not only gained exposure for itself, but has also done good deeds for the community.
In February 2015, Brandon photographed a 13-year-old boy on the street, asking him who inspired him the most. The boy said that person was his principal at Mott Hall Bridges Academy, a small middle school in Brownsville, a lower income area of New York. The reactions and sharing of the photo went viral, so Brandon started a fundraiser to help the school take its 8th grade class on a field trip to Harvard to inspire the students to set high goals for themselves. In two weeks, $1.4 million was raised for the school. With the use of Facebook, one of the world’s most popular social media platforms, a photographer was able to gain worldwide attention for his brand and help others while doing it.
In recent years, Instagram has taken the world by storm. The platform’s growing popularity means brands must find an effective strategy for promoting their product or service. 23-year-old Australian personal trainer/health and fitness expert Kayla Itsines has gained an immense following on Instagram, utilizing the platform in several ways. Not only does she share personal pictures, she also posts before and after pictures of weight loss/fitness success stories of fans that have used her fitness guides on her page. These pictures show real world results, serving as inspiration to others while also showing appreciation of her fans. Kayla’s 3.2 million Instagram followers show that she is able to capture and grow her audience with the motivational nature and variety of her posts. I find myself skimming Kayla’s Instagram page daily, and I’m not even into fitness!
Do you have a social media marketing success story you’d like to share? Which social media platform has your brand had the most success with? How do you use it as an effective marketing tool?
Writing Sample - Blog Post
Today on The Jetsons: Drones Delivering This Holiday?
I recently attended a PRSA talk titled, “Send in the Drones – Keeping Journalists out of Harm’s Way,” where Rose Mooney, executive director, Virginia Tech Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership gave attendees a full debrief on the what, why and how of drones and their use in journalism.
Being a part of a high-tech PR agency, as well as a consumer, I was interested to learn more about this emerging technology and how its use cases seem to be evolving. Originally designed for military use, the flying copters have made their way into other industries such as farming and will soon be landing into the hands of thousands, and maybe even millions, of Americans. Drones are expected to be one of the hottest gifts this holiday season and top retailers are seeing far greater value in the gadget than being just another item (literally) flying off the shelves. In case you haven’t heard, Walmart recently asked the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) permission to test drones for making deliveries to customers in its parking lots and to customers’ homes. After testing drones within facility walls, the major retailer wants to follow in Amazon’s footsteps with its drone efforts.
Earlier this year, the FAA began allowing Amazon to test drones for its new delivery system, Amazon Prime Air. This was step one in turning Amazon’s new, futuristic delivery service into a reality. Amazon Prime Air’s goal is “to safely get packages into customers’ hands in 30 minutes or less using small unmanned aerial vehicles,” according to the Amazon website. You can view a demo of Amazon Prime Air here. Pretty cool, huh?
Of course, not everyone is completely on board with the idea of drones. According to a recent Fortune article , FAA official Rich Swayze says that as many as one million drones could be sold during this year’s holiday season. These UAVs (unmanned aircraft vehicles) have proven to be dangerous on several occasions in the past. For example, pilots have reported drones flying too close to their aircrafts, and some drones have even obstructed firefighting efforts. The FAA is moving quickly to regulate the use of drones. Educational efforts are also underway by big box electronic retailers like Best Buy who have begun offering e-learning courses on proper use and safety regulations for recreational drones.
But the reservations of the FAA aren’t stopping Amazon. CEO Jeff Bezos says that someday, drones will be “as common as seeing a mail truck.” Furthermore, the company has requested that specific air space be designated for commercial drones so it can do quick deliveries. Although this plan has been in the works for several years, it will take several more to actually be implemented.
In the meantime, we’ll look to the skies to watch this Jetson’s inspired world unfold. Have you seen a drone in action? If so, do you think they are the delivery force of the future? And more importantly, will you be adding a drone to your Christmas list?
Writing Sample - Company Narrative
Main Street Realty, a growing property and apartment management firm located in Richmond, Virginia, meticulously restores historical landmarks in vibrant, revitalized urban districts. Some of our restorations include an old distillery, a ham-curing factory, a coliseum and tobacco warehouses.
Main Street Realty works to maintain these beautiful buildings, that would otherwise go neglected. In our efforts to preserve the integrity of these great landmarks, we preserve more than the buildings themselves. The character of the community is restored. Along with renewed beauty and value to an area, there is a renewed spirit and pride in a city’s strong connection with its past. The upscale renovations include state-of-the-art technology and modern design, to meet today’s consumer demands.
We take pride in our dedication to the history and development of these properties as well as the unparalleled service we offer our residents.
Writing Sample - Briefing Sheet (intended to prepare a client for a media briefing)
Mark Chillingworth is Editor and Host of the Horizon Business Innovation CIO and CTO Podcast at Icon Business Media and a Freelancer for IDG Connect. At Icon Business Media, Mark conducts interviews and hosts debates with leading CIOs from the financial, government, manufacturing, retail and health sectors on the Horizon CIO Podcast. He created the Horizon CIO Network in 2015 to bring together next generation service providers and CIOs at a series of professionally moderated events.
Mark has over 20 years of journalism and editing experience across media platforms including online, live events, print magazines and television. He has been observing, speaking at, writing about and hosting CIO/CTO community events and podcasts since January 2008. From 2010 to 2016 he was editor in chief of the award-winning CIO UK. In 2011 he created the “CIO 100,” an annual power list of the UK’s most transformative CIOs. This accomplishment played a significant role in the publication winning the Association of Publishers B2B title of the year during his tenure.
Mark studied Journalism at Surrey Institute of Art & Design from 1992-1995. He currently lives in Surrey, United Kingdom.
IDG Connect is the demand generation division of International Data Group (IDG), the world’s largest technology media company. Established in 2006, it utilizes access to 44 million business decision makers’ details to unite technology marketers with relevant targets from 147 countries around the world. Committed to engaging a disparate global IT audience with truly localized messaging, IDG Connect also publishes market specific thought leadership papers on behalf of its clients and produces research for B2B marketers worldwide.
Icon Business Media’s Horizon CIO Network
The Horizon CIO Network brings innovative business technology leaders together. Developed from close feedback from the CIO community, the Horizon podcasts, websites, WhatsApp group and live events help CIOs discover next generation service providers and via the network build innovative business relationships.
Horizon CIO Network roundtables are a unique opportunity to create relationships with the most transformative business technology leaders in the UK in a curated debate led by Mark Chillingworth, who has been the CIO community editor for over 10 years. Each event features a CIO keynote presentation, insight from a next generation service provider that should be on CIO’s horizons and a professionally moderated event at a modern UK venue.
Wireside initially reached out to IDG Connect in October 2018 proposing former VP for NTT Com in the US, Brandon Curry, for a feature in IDG Connect’s Q&A Series. IDG Connect declined, as Kazu Gomi had already been selected for a Q&A feature for the publication’s C-suite careers advice.
Wireside then pitched a briefing on the IDG Connect Survey results. IDG Connect’s Head of Content, Kate Hoy, expressed interest in hearing more about the survey results and requested that we reconnect in the New Year.
Wireside followed up with Kate on the Q&A opportunity in mid-January. She explained that the publication doesn’t typically publish articles focusing on specific reports; however, she agreed to arrange a Q&A between a freelancer and NTT Com spokesperson. She emphasized that the discussion would not be focused on the research.
This is Mark’s first briefing with NTT Com. He has not previously covered NTT Com. NTT Com was last covered in IDG Connect around the Enterprise Cloud 2.0 launch, NTT Com retools Enterprise Cloud to accelerate digital transformation.
Topics Mark writes about for IDG Connect include: enterprise application integration, cloud computing, and IT planning and management.