Category ArchiveMedia

Media 21 Jun 2013 09:47 am

The Search Goes On

Google remains at the top by providing searching capability

In a recent post on his blog “Newspaper Death Watch,” Paul Gillin cites from ZenithOptimedia that Google, with revenue of 37.9 billion dollars, topped the charts as the world’s largest media company in 2011. It was responsible for 49 percent of Internet ad expenditures worldwide. Google was the only company in the top five that does not produce content, with The DirecTV Group, News Corp, Disney, and Comcast making it as the other most grossing companies.

Content-based companies are still doing well, but searching sites such as Google seem to be taking over. As Gillin states, “Content rules, but search rules more.”

But, why? Why is the act of supplying media, not creating it, ruling the media industry?

Consumer preferences. People want the freedom to search for whatever they want, whenever they want; they want a customized, personal experience. This isn’t surprising. Actually, it’s expected. With technology’s rapid development- tablets, voice-controlled smart phones, and self-parking cars- people have the world at their fingertips with instant gratification of what they seek.

Now that they’ve had a taste of searching out their own media content, consumers want more, and Google provides it.

In general, the internet is taking over. Online shopping and advertisements have made our culture even more consumer-driven and materialistic. Google has figured out better than any other company how to capitalize on this and convince consumers that they need Google to search for what they want.

Larry Page, a past Ann Arborite and alumni of the University of Michigan, probably had no idea that his creation would change the world and become one of the most influential companies of all time. Today, Google continues to propel the media industry into the future with the power to search.

With the ever-changing field of technology, who knows how long content-based groups will remain key players in the media industry.

To read Gillin’s post visit:

Taylor Modrowski

Marketing &Media &Social Media 20 Jul 2011 11:50 am

Google+ versus Facebook for Marketing your Business

As Google+ supposedly reached its 18 million user mark late last night, critics are beginning to wonder what amenities the social media website will offer within its business profiles.

The search engine giant has deleted most of its Google+ business profiles, which has left many companies and corporations anxiously awaiting Google’s next big idea. So as most revert back to their Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter accounts, the question on everyone’s mind is whether Google+ will trump Facebook Pages?

Granted, Google has incredible search capabilities that Facebook can’t match, and has even outdone Facebook’s video chat capabilities with Google+ Hangouts. But what can Google+ offer to force social media execs to make the switch?

“Allowing businesses to chat directly with their users will assert Google+’s dominance over Facebook for business functionality,” believes PC World journalist Ilie Mitaru, “It will take us one step closer to customers and companies actually interacting in real time.”

There has also been recent criticism over limited room for creativity on Facebook Page layouts, leaving the social network vulnerable to Google programmers. “To dress up your Facebook Page, you generally need to know Facebook’s FBML coding language,” says Mitaru.

And as the Google-Facebook war wages on, a win is in sight for its consumers. Whether big or small, businesses will capitalize on such competition by having a great social media marketing tool at their fingertips.

Andrea Garcia

Business of PR &Marketing &Marketing Communications &Media &Technology PR Insights 25 Mar 2011 01:11 pm

Markers of Change: From Traditional to Interactive

In 2007, LG released their first television set with DVR installed allowing viewers to skip show advertisements entirely. The worst financial crises since the Great Depression shocked the nation in 2008, which called for innovation in the media industry. And in 2009 Google, controller of two-thirds of the search market, began using Behavioral Targeting advertising, changing the way the industry defined effective ad campaigns. All of these events precipitated a change in the public relations, media and advertising industry.

First, traditional media performance began to level as digital media took root. Marketers and PR professionals have been more reluctant to engage in digital campaigns because of their negligible reach in comparison to television. Still, Internet is showing alluring promise with its savvy capabilities. Furthermore, PR professionals are slowly coming to recognize the importance of fit of the message, over reach, which is where digital may have the upper hand.

Second, traditional media began to adapt to advances in technology and changes in consumer behaviors. The future of television’s 30-second spot is looking at changes toward interactive commercials, which encourages research on the analytics end about consumer preferences. With Behavioral Targeting, digital advertisers have also begun exploring the effectiveness of relevant ads, or ads that focus on fit, to an interested audience.

Still, these professionals may be stuck in the old frame of mind. Jeff Einstein, digital pioneer of the Brothers Einstein, claims advertisers are focused too much on ineffective reach and do not recognize the potential of message fit.

“In an on-demand media universe the right audience always qualifies and declares itself simply by showing up. But in advertising, getting the right audience to show up is the easy part. The hard part is delivering the brand message once they get there because no one ever goes anywhere for the ads.”

As digital marketing and advertising continues to popularize and industry leaders are looking to gain the edge over their competition, the industry may see a move toward campaigns that aim to appeal to their audience through fit, rather than simple through reaching as big an audience as possible. In the future of this industry, it could very well be the case that quality of fit better predicts campaign success than quantity of target reached.

Jackie VanSloten

About Eiler Communications &Code of behavior &Media 25 Jun 2010 12:33 pm

China: A Double-Sided Internet Policy

A current concern of the average American citizen is monitoring the content of their online profiles. In a culture where an angry post or an inappropriate photo is made available for everyone to see, it is difficult to imagine having limited Internet access due to government censorship. However, this is the existing situation in China where the government has been monitoring online content since the introduction of the Internet years ago. While U.S. citizens are censoring what they put online, the Chinese government is censoring what their citizens can access.

The Golden Shield Project, more commonly referred to as the “Great Firewall of China”, operates as a censorship and surveillance program by the Ministry of Public Security division of the government of China. The Great Firewall of China blocks website content and also monitors Internet sessions of individuals. While it is hard to find an exact number, there are rumored to be as many as 30,000 government officials working as Internet police agents. These Internet police ensure that any critical or questionable material is deleted within minutes. The government expects all Internet service providers, businesses and organizations to abide by Great Firewall of China censorship policies.

To better illustrate the present conditions in China, Internet powerhouse Google pulled out of China last January after having trouble adhering to the strict censorship policies. Google decided that it simply was not feasible to censor all their search results. A few weeks ago, China released a White Paper on Internet usage and its future for Chinese citizens.

The overall message of the paper is that China is attempting to embrace the Internet and all it has to offer. They are aiming to be “a leader in global evolution by monitoring and regulating the Internet”. According to the document, nothing that “subverts state power, undermines national unity, infringes upon honor and interests or incites ethnic hatred and secession” is allowed. Also banned are a majority of social networking sites, terror-related sites, gambling sites, rumor-spreading sites, sites that support superstitious ideas and sites with vulgar or adult material.

As an American citizen accustomed to my First Amendment rights, the Chinese government’s Internet declaration seemed oxy-moronic. It came as a surprise that a government would allow for their World Wide Web to have kinks in it. One of the beauties of the Internet is that a majority of its content is user based. Censoring this content and restricting what is shared results in a bland, less enriched pool of resources. Is it possible for a country to attempt to embrace the Internet while at the same time control it?

Emily Rozanski

Media &Social Media 18 May 2010 02:34 pm

A new twist on the evolution of information-gathering habits?

Here is a breakdown of where respondents get their information according to a “Re:NEW Michigan®” survey April 15 -28.

Question: Where do you get news and information?

Comment: Are social media opinions and commentaries really capturing what these results show? Or do we remain in the “fad” stage where people are not discerning real news from opinions?

Looking at the substantial jump in the social media category, we would like to clarify this result a little better in our next poll in September. We think we uncovered something about how people’s information-gathering habits evolve. We believe that linking to news sites via Facebook & Twitter has become a “source” for many people online. The spread of news (case in point: Michael Jackson’s death or the recent oil rig disaster in the Gulf) became a trending topic over social media, where links to source material were shared.

“Re:NEW Michigan®” is a trademark of Eiler Communications (, which periodically surveys a sample of businesses, healthcare and educational institutions, governmental and non-profit leaders on various topics of broad interest especially related to marketing.

Ann Arbor, Michigan PR Firm &Electronic PR &Leadership &Marketing &Media &Michigan Positive 28 Jul 2009 04:23 pm

Dr. Twitter – The Psychology of Social Media

Social media (SM) users are relying on the web 2.0 sites for more than just networking these days. Might SM’s greatest contribution be mental health? SM’s use as a therapeutic outlet was studied and explored by Mental Health Camp, a Canadian-based conference in April 2009. This collaborative project investigated SM’s influence on mental health, both from a PR perspective and as a therapeutic outlet.

The all day Camp looked at ways to erase social stigmas associated with poor mental health “one tweet at a time” through social media marketing. Camp presentations and discussions pitched SM as an opportunity to release public service announcements from a personal perspective.

Additionally, presenters positioned SM as an outlet for those dealing with stress and anxiety. In terms of daily relief, individuals can blog and tweet away mental angst. According to Mental Health Camp counselors, mental health ranges from mental wellbeing (e.g. minimum stress, interpersonal problems) and serious illness (e.g. addiction, schizophrenia, anorexia). Mental wellbeing is our focus in this blog. Rather than keeping thoughts and burdens weighing on your mind, why not write a soothing blog or post on Twitter? In this sense, SM is a new age, productive version of the punching bag or stress ball.

Although the Camp concluded in April, online therapy continues on the Mental Health Camp’s website (here) as well on sites throughout the internet. As we have documented on this blog Web 2.0 and SM continue to weave into communication networks in productive ways.

Personally, I find blogging and other SM software both fun and therapeutic. In addition to a quick cure for boredom, networking with friends on Facebook is a great distraction from daily stresses. And when my girlfriend and roommates are sick of listening to my rants about my favorite sports teams, I continue the discussion on the blogoshpere. I know, I know…how pathetic right? Well, the stigmas surrounding these online outlets are quickly disappearing while the benefits are becoming more apparent.

Case Ernsting

Ann Arbor, Michigan PR Firm &Business and Economy &Electronic PR &Entrepreneurs &Marketing Communications &Media &mobile marketing 20 May 2009 10:10 am

How Are You Using Twitter?

If you’re at all into Social Media you know about Twitter; but do you know how you can use Twitter to effectively market your company?

One company using Twitter to their advantage is Kogi BBQ, they are a Korean-Style taco vendor that sells their food out of a lunch truck, and they are using Twitter to their advantage. Kogi “tweets” the location of their two lunch trucks throughout Los Angeles as well as extra items not mentioned on the menu. Kogi has only been around since November but is already one of the most recognizable names in the country. They have close to 24,000 followers.

Another company out in Los Angeles using Twitter is The Westin Bonaventure, a hotel in the heart of LA’s financial district. Recently they gave away rooms to twenty-five followers. This created such a buzz that media outlets such as USA Today and The Los Angeles Times picked up the story. Obviously, all their followers knew about it and around 100 of them retweeted the news as well. In an interview with the PR firm responsible, an estimated twenty million impressions were generated from this campaign. Twenty million impressions resulting from a single tweet, you can’t ask for anything better.

As you can see, Twitter can be very powerful. If used correctly, it’s a great way to reach the masses in expensively. Find a unique way to grab people’s attention, and the rest will follow. Twitter is free and easy to use, so if you and your company aren’t already using Twitter, it’s about time to start. Happy Tweeting.

Christian Bittner

Business and Economy &Corporate Communications &Electronic PR &Journalism &Media &Social Media &Writing 19 May 2009 04:55 pm

Journalism on the Silver Screen

Moviegoers were graced with a glimpse into the world of journalism in April with the premiere of two top-notch press-centric films; State of Play and The Soloist respectively. The investigative reporting and journalistic flair of newspaper writers drive the two films. State of Play and Soloist are just the latest in a long line of movies centered on the cunning investigations pivotal to the newspaper world. Remember All the Kings Men? Citizen Kane? Or The Pelican Brief? While the most recent cinematic journalism adventures are far from the first to feature press writers, might they be two of the last?

As newspapers continue to search for new business models, the “Watchdog” function is changing or disappearing. New forms of social media have accelerated the public’s demand for news. Whereas reporters once had weeks to cover an in-depth story, the editorial calendar has shrunk significantly. Instead of investing in investigations guarding public interests, newspapers are forced by high print and distribution costs to watch over their pocketbooks.

Some of the best movies of this generation are marked by newspapers in some way. If newspapers continue the current downward spiral, it will definitely be reflected at theaters…but how much remains to be seen. Five years from now, Denzel Washington may be on stage accepting an Oscar for portraying a Twitter-er. Or M. Knight Shyamalan might be directing a horror flick about Facebook. Enjoy the likes of The Soloist and State of Play while you can. Journalism has been celebrated in our society for many, many years, but the changes on the printed page are usually reflected on the reel.

Case Ernsting

Blogging &Business of PR &Electronic PR &Leadership &Media &Public Relations Tools &Social Media 03 Apr 2009 03:11 pm

Tweet Responsibly

I’ve been trying to explain Twitter and Facebook to my parents for some time now, and despite my best efforts, they still find the lack of privacy a little unsettling. “You mean everyone will know when you go to the bathroom?”

Not exactly Mom, you don’t tell people everything you’re doing. But her point is a good one. Social Media (SM) allows individuals to effortlessly communicate and share ideas across broad networks, but some recent news has shown what happens when social media goes wrong.

Twitter’s rapidly growing population consists of celebrities, presidents, companies, neighbors and even pets. Charlie Villanueva, Forward for the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA, has become an infamous Tweeter after two incidents last month. First, Villanueva or CV31 as he’s known on Twitter, posted a Tweet at halftime of a game against the Boston Celtics. Bucks’ head coach Scott Skiles quickly reprimanded these actions. (The Tweet can be read here.) For an encore, CV31 cited an inside source when he announced that Jim Calhoun, the coach of his Alma mater would coach in the next game of the NCAA Tournament for the University of Connecticut after health complications kept him out of the previous game.

“Juror Jonathon” ran into trouble in March for Tweeting details of a $12.6 million case from his cell phone. These Twitter updates, while not explicitly forbidden by courts, are believed to be grounds for a mistrial.

These two incidents are yet another example of technology moving faster than regulatory rules (or just a lack of common sense). Social media is a great public relations tool, providing ways for businesses and individuals to control their messages. But as more companies and businesses enter the social media circus, they must be wary of information leaking to the public through blogs, podcasts, Facebook pages, MySpace, Twitter, etc. The traditional walls of privacy my parents are familiar with are being torn down in favor of faster communication. Until rules are in place to control the expansive social media capabilities, remember to balance networking with personal responsibility and common sense.

Case Ernsting

About Eiler Communications &Ann Arbor, Michigan PR Firm &Business and Economy &Business of PR &Electronic PR &Leadership &Marketing &Media &Michigan Public Relations Firm &Public Relations Tools &Social Media 20 Mar 2009 03:51 pm

Thought Leadership

Are you a thought leader? Thought leaders are credible, insightful industry professionals (often heads of companies) with the expertise to comment on industry trends and issues…basically, the leaders of thoughts. This is highly desirable brand position requiring a focused public relations (PR) effort and a commitment to hard work.

Thought leaders provide insight and vision and therefore, are “go to” sources for members of the media often providing quotes and commentary for news coverage. Highly visible examples include Steve Jobs of Apple, Bill Gates of Microsoft, Larry Page of Google, Richard Branson of Virgin Megastores, or Mark Zuckerburg of Facebook. These leaders provide insight of global scale due to their product’s popularity around the world. It is also possible to carve out a niche for your company’s product or service locally or wherever you define your target market.

A few thought-leadership tips from, a Minneapolis based business-to-business marketing agency:

1. Availability: Respect the hectic schedule of the journalists and other members of the press and return all calls ASAP.
2. Preparedness: As a thought leader, you are expected to possess wisdom and a familiarity with a wide variety of topics in your field. It is advised that you prepare talking points prior to any media engagement/interview.
3. Be Opinionated: Donald Trump might be the best example of this type of thought leadership. Thought leaders are expected to bring something new to the conversation without sitting on the fence. Be bold, compelling and dramatic.
4. Persistence: Create your own fortune through thought leadership tools. Examples include determined press releases, knowledgeable speaking engagements, effective social media, white papers, by-lined articles, and/or case studies.

Eiler Communications has practiced these skills for over twenty years, establishing brand messages and thought leadership strategies for local and national businesses. David Mielke, Dean of Eastern Michigan University’s College of Business, is an example of a local thought leader Eiler Communications works with consistently. Mielke has established a voice in the business community writing articles in the Ann Arbor Business Review and on, often times commenting on the current state of business ethics. Mielke also serves on a number of economic and business boards.

So, are you ready to be a thought leader?

Case Ernsting

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