New Developments

Job opening for a Communications Trainee

We are on the lookout for an enthusiastic, media-minded and social media savvy trainee to support our consumer team!

The following skills and competences are what we are looking for in a candidate:

• Research skills
• Copywriting
• Creativity
• A feel for social media
• An interest in media relations
• Fluent in Dutch & English (any additional language is a plus!)
• A hands-on mentality

Depending on the profile of the student, we will make sure she or he gets a tailor-made trainee program which builds on the student’s individual talents and selected assignments from the following categories:

– Support in the day-to-day client work
• Monitoring and evaluation of media programs for consumer clients
• Research / data mining for specific client projects
• Copywriting for social media, press releases, fact sheets, backgrounders, Q & A’s
• Support media outreach and follow-up of media requests
• Blogger outreach
• Content development for social media programs
• Development of collateral material (Powerpoint, Word) for client meetings

– Support of new business projects
• Research and creation of new bizz presentations
• Participating in creative brainstorms

– Sharpening writing skills (social media copy, press release drafts, memo’s, ‘pr-style’ writing)

– Attending consultancy training sessions (pr skills, business development, aspects of management)

Interested? Please send your CV to Febe Boone (febe.boone@porternovelli.be).

 

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Let’s have a moment of silence for Social Media Experts

By Jeroen Gaudissabois (@JGaudiss)
 

I would like to bring to your attention that a once majestic species is on the verge of extinction. I am talking about the Social Media Expert. It was only a couple of years ago that a lack of knowledge about social media proved fertile ground for the rise of scores of these self-declared experts. If you believed them, these lone predators-for-hire were raised by the internet itself and were a one-stop shop for digital success! But something has changed. The number of these “experts” is declining and one cannot help but wonder what is going on here.

 

The last of their kind? Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/anonymous9000/4281777022/

The last of their kind? Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/anonymous9000/4281777022/

 

The habitat that was once so inviting to these “experts” has changed. The ignorance about social media and digital communications is gradually making way for a general level of basic understanding. A lot of the expertise that the experts claimed is now freely accessible online. Furthermore, companies are realising that digital communications, like every form of communication, are no exact science. The very concept of communication hinges on the most unpredictable parameter of all: people.

On top of this, digital communications have additional difficulties to cope with. They are indirect, lack a supporting context and take place in a landscape that is subject to rapid changes. It is now clear that “expertise” is a false claim. How can you master a subject on which the book is being written faster than you could ever hope to read it?

Is there no hope then? Are we to stand by and watch this once majestic species fall? Will companies have to stumble around the internet blindly, hoping for a kind soul to illuminate a portion of the treacherous path they’re walking? Do we throw in the towel and roll over the floor crying because there will be no one left to help? Of course not.

Luckily for us, a new species has risen: the Digital Strategist! Strategists, as opposed to their solitary predecessors, live in communities and refuse to boast complete knowledge of social media. They base their decisions and recommendations on experience, data analysis and shared knowledge. By continuously gathering and sharing experience, they can partially predict the unfathomable course of digital communications.

Undoubtedly, there are some very smart cookies out there, but unless they become part of a network that actively shares experience, best practices and data analyses, their position will become untenable. The isolated experts, whatever the level of their expertise may be, will have to make way for strategists that are supported by a wider network and have access to a sufficient pool of data.

So will the “experts” go extinct? As a species, yes, but we can find comfort in the thought that the brightest of them will find a new home in a pack of strategists. As my favourite scientist of all time, Dr. Ian Malcolm, once said it: “Life finds a way.”

 

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THE NUMBER GAME

By @CharlottCatt

number_game

 * Image source: http://dejoi.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/number_game.jpg

Let’s be honest. Most of us still have that little kid inside us that really wants a good grade. I know I do. And I suspect some of our clients might as well. When determining the objectives of a new project, these tend to take the form of a certain quantitative measure as an indicator for success, such as the amount of press coverage, the number of consumer reviews or event attendance numbers.

 

However in our business, it’s not just about the numbers. What we strive for every day, is a fine balance between quality and quantity (and in an ideal world, achieve both). Getting your messages published in that specific trade publication or having those select few key influencers attend your event can have a significant impact. You’re not just reaching a broad anonymous public, but a targeted audience that’s in line with your strategic goals. And that is exactly what our job is about.

 

When a brand takes its first steps in the field of digital communications, it can easily fall into the quantity trap. Fans, friends, followers … they’re all such seducing KPIs. One gets greedy and keeps wanting more and more of them. But this greed for community members may in fact be a hindrance, blinding us to what really counts.

 

Granted, as a warm blooded community manager, my heart skips a tiny beat with every new fan, every new person to connect with. Nonetheless, we should always strive toward a qualitative, rather than a sizable fan/followers base. Sure, a Facebook page with thousands of fans looks nice, but it isn’t automatically proof of an effective digital program.

 

Through a relevant content strategy and balanced advertising plan we should aim to reach those people that matter most to our clients. You can imagine how much more valuable it is for a baby care brand to reach one young mom, compared to having three teenage boys as new Facebook fans. From the outset we need to focus on quality, and set out to touch those fans and followers that will connect with the brand in a significant way and form an engaged community – A community with a strong conversion rate, because that is where the return on your social media can be found. So in a way, it does all come back to numbers, now doesn’t it?

 

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Facebook Graph Search – PN Connect Rapid Briefing

As a feature enhancement, as a search engine and as a new ad platform, Facebook’s beta Graph Search announced on January 15  has the potential to impact the brand social media landscape in a number of ways. Our global team has prepared a 15-page briefing outlining our initial perspective and recommendations regarding Facebook’s Graph Search.

For the full post, please visit Porter Novelli’s global blog: Facebook Graph Search – PN Connect Rapid Briefing.

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