Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hand-Slap Rating System on Marketing and PR Mistakes

Yesterday I devised this unique rating system. It's called the "Hand-Slap" system. I decided that for every silly or ridiculous thing I saw someone do with their marketing, PR or book, I would rate it based on how many hand slaps I thought it deserved to let them know a measure of how "bad" it was. And when I say, "bad," I mean bad for business, bad for your image, bad for your brand, and just an all-inclusive bad! A version of this will appear in my newsletter too. So here is the rating systems decoded: 1H = moderately bad; 2H = bad enough to mention; 3H = not good; 4H = should not do it; and 5H = what were you thinking? So, here are some recently reviewed acts that require the slap-down.

True Confessions in Memoirs that Include Terrible Deeds = 5H
True confessions are salacious and draw people in. They are titillated and want to hear what you're going to confess. It's OK to "confess" stories where you learned an important and valuable lesson. It's not OK to confess stories for the pure thrill of getting it off your chest. The following confessions should be kept lock and key in your head: drug stories where you admit you loved it, you still do it, and you don't intend to stop doing it; drinking stories of any kind where you are not sorry and in fact proud of your antics; sex stories where you do some pretty racy stuff and now intend to share it with the world, which will also include your mom and dad; scandalous stories where you're the main character and you have no remorse over your participation. All of these stories are bad for every reason I described in the introduction.

Social Media Bad Behavior = 5H
Hmmm ... so far these descriptions are getting fives ... but I digress. What is up with people and social media posting that shouldn't be publicly posted much less posted at all? I'm horrified how outstanding professionals who are even in the marketing and PR industry and should know better post completely inappropriate personal information or worse shots of their bikini bods. Seriously, you realize employers now use Facebook and Linked-In to check up on job candidates, right? And if you're not looking for a job, realize clients look you up ... and these very same prospective clients will watch you. They will not alert you they are out there watching, because they're sizing you up to do business. Please be careful what you decide to put out on what is essentially a public bulletin board. Your image could be forever tarnished. And I'm talking about all those "fun" party shots too -- say bye-bye!

The Inappropriate and Irrelevant Blog Posts = 3H
So you have a blog -- that is great and certainly a positive step forward for your marketing. What are you posting on your blog? I hope it's about business-related or at least related material. Even if it's your personal blog, be careful what you post. If you work for a corporation and you "vomit" all your angst on your blog, prepare to be fired. It's still the Internet! It's public, and your boss may see it. Do not post anything related to the following: your bedroom antics, your party pictures (even if it's empty bottles of beer), your true feelings about your job or co-workers or product, your hatred of your neighbor's dog, your political viewpoint if its contrary to your day job and you work for the other party, and the list goes on. Measure everything you post by simple criteria: can it hurt my image in any way, shape for form?

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