Social Meets Psych & Bruins Launch Den


The Oscars of Social Media Names the Mayor of All Mayors


Last week the 4th annual Shorty Awards (also known as The Shorties) took place at The Times Center in New York City. If you aren’t familiar with the relatively new awards, they can be described as the Oscars of social media. They were hosted by Samantha Bee and Jason Jones (of The Daily Show), who were fitting hosts for the show.

What is really cool about The Shorties is that the majority of the voting is done on Twitter (if you don’t have Twitter you can vote online as well), where people can encourage friends to vote the same by using certain hashtags.

The awards range from the serious, best use of social media for government, to completely silly, like the best non-human in social media! Categories also include different awards for best uses by and brands and by people.

One of the coolest awards handed out this year was the Foursquare Mayor of the Year – which went to New York City’s mayor, Michael Bloomberg.

As a marketer – this is a great place to learn from the best in the business, with brand categories like Best Overall Brand Presence on Tumblr (Doctor Who Tumblr) or Best Location-Based Marketing = (Walgreens: Check-ins That Make a Difference).

As social media becomes increasingly important for brands and celebrity personalities, we expect to see The Shorty Awards continue to get bigger. Take a look at all the great categories and tell us what category you would add?


Under the Radar: Social Media Can Ease the Psychological Burden of Natural Disasters

Some say social media is contributing to the downfall of a social and communicative society. But there hasn’t been much attention focused on how social media is actually helping us in our social lives. That’s why we were excited to see this new study put out by the University of Western Sydney in Australia. A team of researchers found that social media can actually help to ease the psychological burden of natural disasters. And we believe it!

The study surveyed more than 1,100 people about their use of Twitter and Facebook during Tropical Cyclone Yasi in Queensland, the New Zealand earthquake, and the tsunami in Japan. And they found that social media not only allowed users to act as “amplifiers of official information,” but to also feel less alone. Why? Well, partly because, instead of hearing news from a third party like the news station, social media allows us to hear personal stories and get a more realistic look at exactly what’s going on. This knowledge allows us to feel less of a burden in the moments following a natural disaster.

Have you used social media during a national disaster? These days, I find myself heading to Twitter the second I hear about a potential disaster. Then again, Twitter is usually where I find out about the disaster. And while I haven’t yet experienced a national disaster, I do feel like the community on social media helps me feel more a part of what’s going on with its instant information and connections.


Around the Hub: Boston Bruins Launch Digital Network Heavy in Social Media

We’re not generally used to being first in Boston. And the Bruins are not generally thought to be one of the most progressive teams of our homeland. But after coming in first last year with a Stanley Cup win, they’re making another first in 2012. The team just launched a website that houses all their social, digital, and mobile efforts. The Boston Bruins Digital Entertainment Network, DEN for short, is said to be the first of its kind in the world of pro sports.

The snazzy, well-branded website consists of lots of exclusive video, mobile information, and feeds and links to a wide variety of the team’s social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, Instagram, and Tumblr. Yes, the Bruins are seemingly everywhere on the Interwebs. There’s even a section on DEN about where to find the Bruins Ice Girls on Facebook! DEN will act as a hub for fans who want to feel that deeper connection with the team and see non-stop up-to-the-second updates. In fact, serious fans may even spend all day on the site… Or at least the entire game time when they’re stuck watching on their couch instead of at the Garden.

Will other professional sports teams be following the Bruins lead? I’m almost surprised it took any team this long to figure it out (especially the Boston Celtics who are usually right on top of all things social media)! Simply having a Twitter and Facebook account is no longer enough and fans are looking for a deeper, more lasting interaction.


What are your top social media marketing stories of the week?  Tweet us at @451Heat


RFP – Request for Proposal or Request for Passion?

This morning I attended yet another amazing New England Publicity Club Masters Institute event. Today’s topic focused on the procurement process of RFPs and looked at “What Makes a Successful Agency Relationship?” Both in-house and agency people were in the room and on the panel which made it easy to see where we have mindshare. First, when it comes to RFPs most of us feel the same way—we hate them! Second, the “P” in RFP should really stand for passion, because that’s what companies are looking for from their potential agencies. The good news is that most agencies are loaded with it! Here is a quick list of tips for people on both sides of the RFP process for how to make it successful and relatively painless:



  • Be open. The more open you are to answering questions from agencies before their deadline to submit the better quality responses you’ll get.
  • Be prepared for some pain. Managing the RFP process requires juggling a lot including your executives’ expectations. Try to get their buy in ahead of time that you can call the shots until it gets down to the finalists.
  • Brevity is key. Keep your RFPs to 1.5 pages long. This lets agencies be creative.
  • Know the players. Ask to meet the team that will work on your account. They are the ones that will be in the trenches with you and the ones you’ll need to trust.
  • Don’t ask for the pie in the sky. Bold ideas are worthless unless they can be executed within budget and provide measurable ROI.
  • Don’t compare on price, but value. This is the hardest tip to implement, but the most important. Ask any client with a long-standing agency relationship and they’ll tell you that what makes it work over time is chemistry, trust and the value the agency brings. The most successful partnerships aren’t about the dollars and cents.


  • Demonstrate passion. How can you do this on a piece of paper? Connect with your contact in every way possible before the deadline. Ask questions, ask for a call or a meeting, connect on LinkedIn, etc. Showing interest early and often is a guaranteed way to demonstrate your agency is passionate about getting the business.
  • Be compassionate. Understand that your contact might be dealing with internal politics that prevents them from creating and executing the RFP in the way they know best.
  • Don’t give away the farm. If the RFP asks you for a three month plan and a press list then raise the red flag. This is outside of the acceptable boundaries of a RFP and it might mean the company is looking for free ideas.
  • Bring the whole team. Don’t just bring the head of business development and a few directors to your pitch meeting. I know it’s scary, but bring the team that will work on the business—even the young ones!
  • Be creative, but not irrational. Make sure you can execute on the creative ideas. Keep in mind budget, timeframe, and demonstrating ROI.



  • Double check that your “find and replace” removed all of the past company name references from your new proposal.
  • Spell “public relations” correctly. Don’t forget the “l” in public or the “s” on relations.
  • Don’t use case examples that are older than your cell phone (think two-year contract).


Many of the helpful tips I’ve listed here came directly from members of today’s panel. And they are:


Do you have more tips to share? Let us know by posting a comment or tweeting us @451Heat