Friday, March 29, 2013

Favorite Finds

Yet another "new" Facebook, the pros and cons of public shaming and the enviable job of doing PR for North Korea...all in all, another exciting week in reads on Twitter!
  • What your Instagram filter says about you. From sunrises to city skylines to that popular entrĂ©e at a new restaurant, 100 million monthly active users fade, age and brighten their daily lives via Instagram. This fun infographic predicts what kind of person you are based on your filter choices. 
  • Painting a different picture for North Korea. In what must be one of the toughest PR jobs on earth, a Spaniard is tasked with expanding North Korea’s influence around the world.
  • Do you know the new Facebook? After revealing multiple changes at once, five of Facebook’s new features might have gone unnoticed.
  • Vigilante Tweeting. When an L.A. restaurant called out reservation no-shows, it begged the question: is public shaming ever an acceptable PR tactic?
  • Petraeus apologizes. The former C.I.A. director began his PR comeback with a public apology regarding the scandal that forced his resignation.

Monday, March 25, 2013

In the Mix…A Taste-ful Gift for the Time Pressed Cook

Last week we helped launch the first small appliance line for Frigidaire Professional!  Hitting shelves at Target just in time for the spring gifting season, these stylish small appliances are designed to produce gourmet results in less time for the at-home cook. In the coming weeks, we’ll be getting the word out about these time-saving appliances to media, bloggers and consumers. For more product info and cooking ideas, check out the Frigidaire Facebook page.  

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Favorite Finds

The first day of spring may have been this week, but it sure doesn’t feel like it in Chicago. Social media, however, has been heating up this week with a yoga pants scandal, Pinterest redesign and March Madness brackets. Here are a few of our favorite stories this week.

·         State of the News Media. Pew Research Center released their 2013 State of the News Media Report. The report showed the biggest growth in news consumption was digital but with economic and audience trouble, the news industry is more undermanned and unprepared to uncover stories, dig deep into emerging ones or to question information put into its hands.

·         Pinterest’s new look. Pinterest rolled out a new design. Changes include, larger clickable images, a related pins sidebar as well as the option to visit the website, removal of hashtags and Facebook or Twitter links and a 160 character maximum profile description, to name a few.

·         A yoga pants recall? It’s true! Lululemon recalled a batch of its luon black yoga pants because they’re too sheer, casting blame on their manufacturer. But there’s more to the story than meets the eye. The manufacturer, Eclat Textile Company, said that Lululemon OK’d the shipment of the sheer yoga pants. PR crisis, anyone?

·         March Madness. Tis the season for NCAA brackets. PR agency Schwartz MSL Insights Group has provided the social media power bracket. Their bracket winner is based upon schools’ performance on the social media court. Schwartz MSL Insights Group has predicted that Duke will be crowned the NCAA social media champ.

Friday, March 22, 2013

An LCWA Legacy

With heavy hearts, we mourn the loss of our dear colleague and friend, Kay Degenhardt.  She passed away this week after a long battle with cancer.  We will miss her wonderful flair, her classic style and her love of life.   

Kay came to LCWA in 1995 to run our New York City office, bringing us her strong background and knowledge of home furnishings and design.  Her instinct for relationship building and storytelling made her a true media relations guru.  She had a passion for the industry and shared it with everyone.  Our teams and clients learned from the best mentor in the business, making all of us better professionals. 

We know that her legacy will continue.  Every brainstorm, media tour, press event and story pitch will have a little bit of Kay’s “fabulous” creativity in them.  It truly was a pleasure working with her for so many years. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Favorite Finds

Chicago may be stuck in a cold snap, but social media’s always hot! Below are some “favorite finds” for this week. 
  • Hashtags coming to Facebook? Facebook is looking to improve its search and indexing capabilities by adding the hashtag symbol, one of the most recognizable features of its social networking rival Twitter, according to media reports. The introduction is not imminent, but reports are that it’s being considered.
  • The demise of Google Reader. Many sad “Reader-ites” are looking for a new RSS Reader option after Google announced that it is shutting down Google Reader.
  • Facebook ‘likes’ shed light. Researchers can accurately and automatically predict sensitive personal traits of people on Facebook by analyzing the patterns of "Likes,” according to recent reports.
  • Pinterest becomes measurable. Pinterest launched web analytics to track popular content – great news for those of us who want to follow what’s popular on the social media channel.
  • Animals take the spotlight. Eyes were glued on the Vatican this week during the Papal Conclave, but a seagull perched on the chimney briefly become an Internet sensation as it trended on social media – while at SXSW, Grumpy Cat was the breakout star.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

In the Mix...Finding Form and Function in Outdoor Living

To shine a spotlight on its new “Engineered Artistry” marketing campaign, our client Trex brought together two experts in their respective fields, culinary artist Tyler Florence and landscape architect Lisa Switkin. As part of the new campaign, launched for the 2013 decking season, Florence and Switkin appear in a video that explores why these two elements – engineering and artistry – are essential in outdoor design. The personalities also take center stage in print and online ads, as well as on Trex’s social media channels. From outreach to marketing media to organic Facebook posts and a sweepstakes planned for spring, LCWA will be generating buzz for the campaign among Trex’s target demographic throughout outdoor living season. Check out to see Tyler and Lisa in the “Engineered Artistry” video!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

In the Mix…Contigo Makes a Splash with No-Spill Cups at the 2013 International Home & Housewares Show

Last week, LCWA helped new client Contigo®, a leading producer of innovative water bottles, travel mugs and kids cups, create a no-spill “splash” at the International Home and Housewares Show.  The Chicago-based company, which is known for spill- and leak- resistant beverageware for on-the-go consumers highlighted new innovations, as well as the company’s popular Contigo AUTOSEAL™ and AUTOSPOUT® collections, to more than 40 media outlets during the four-day trade show at Chicago’s McCormick Center. We’re excited to be working with Contigo and look forward to turning our long list of media appointments into coverage for the brand later this year!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Favorite Finds

As we dug out from another major snowstorm in Chicago this week, the social media world was filled with inspirational stories, major Facebook changes and some mind-boggling facts about the Internet. Here are a few of our favorite stories this week:
  • Face-Lift at Facebook. Facebook announced the first major changes to its news feed since it launched in 2006. The news feed will include more visual posts, the ability to view content-specific feeds, and feature more consistency between mobile and desktop experience. 
  • 2.8 Million Emails Per Second. Nearly 3 million emails are sent each day and more than one-third of the entire global population goes online ever day! An infographic from shows just how ubiquitous the Internet has become on a global scale. 
  • United’s PR Win. We learned of a heartwarming story in which United Airlines employees and crew delayed a flight to help a man see his dying mother.
  • Social for B2B. According to Media Bistro, 64 percent of B2B companies are currently invested in social media marketing. This interesting infographic shows how B2B businesses can leverage the potential of social media in 2013.

Monday, March 4, 2013

In The Mix…A Matter of Record for Healthcare Client

We recently secured a cover story in “For the Record” magazine for client Pyramid Healthcare Solutions, a leading provider of revenue cycle management services.  A Pyramid executive was quoted throughout the article that focused on the divide between coding curriculums and the criteria hospitals seek in new coders. The publication covers the healthcare information industry, and the prominent placement brought attention to Pyramid’s industry expertise and services offering in the healthcare arena. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

Favorite Finds

It was a week of highs and lows in the media world. It began with a rare apology from The Onion after an Oscar misstep, continued with a big milestone for Instagram and ended with mystery meat crisis. Here are some of our favorite from the Twitterverse this week:
  • Social Media’s Big Night: The stars weren’t the only ones on the edge of their seats on Oscar night – social media teams for big name brands were all abuzz. Here’s the good, the bad and the ugly – and what you can learn – from real-time social media marketing during the Oscars.
  • #InstagramMeansToMe: This breakout mobile app, launched in October 2010, announced this week that it has reached 1 million monthly active users – a milestone that took Facebook four and a half years to hit. The app is asking it’s users to join in the celebration by using the hashtag #InstagramMeansToMe.
  • Sell Out: Tribune Co. hired investment bankers to sell off its newspaper unit, which includes the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times This comes on the heels of The New York Times Co announcement last week that it plans to sell the Boston Globe and other related papers.
  • Mystery Meat: It might sound like a story straight from a grade school cafeteria, but this mystery meat fiasco has become a global PR crisis. Traces of horse meat have been found in food products from a number of well-known brands – including Burger King and Ikea – in the U.K. Meanwhile, the rest of the world is voicing their thoughts on Twitter, and PR pros are handling the crisis on and off social media.