Archive | March, 2014

#MusicMonday: Ultra Music Festival or EDM Allstar Game?

31 Mar

Today’s Music Monday is dedicated to Ultra Music Festival. Over the weekend, I had a chance to tune into the electronic music event in Miami. And to my surprise, there were hosts during the live stream… or more like side-line reporters without any knowledge of the basketball players. These Ultra VJs were asking questions like “What are you wearing?” and “What did you think of the songs you just played?” Additionally, there was one point where they asked Nicky Romero to blow a kiss to the camera… looked like it caught Nicky off guard. Not the most informative or interesting for the Ultra live stream viewers in my opinion. I would have liked to see more detailed Qs.

Remember, if you are hiring hosts for a live stream or event, prep them with as much information about the subject beforehand. Or use social media to your advantage by crowdsourcing (better)questions from the viewers. With more than 1M viewers tuning in from all over the world, this would have been the perfect opportunity for Ultra to let the crowd do the work for them.

Alright, back to my music Monday picks! Here are my top favs from the lineup. Let me know what you think in the comments. Enjoy!

Listen Up! Lorde Can Teach a Thing or Two About Millennial Marketing…

28 Mar


This week, I had the pleasure of speaking to author Marc Shapiro on examining the career of Lorde, the 17 year-old New Zealand musician who just won her first two Grammys for her hit song “Royals”.

Lorde: Your Heroine, How This Young Feminist Broke All the Rules and Succeeded, released by Riverdale Avenue Books, explores the many facets of Lorde including her feminist viewpoints, how intellectually inclined she is, and her talent of writing meaningful music. Shapiro shows over the course of a year how Lorde’s career went from complete obscurity to superstardom.

During my interview with Shapiro, I wanted to focus on how Lorde uniquely markets herself and her brand. I wondered, was she being strategic in the way she dresses, addresses questions and connects with the youth? According to Shapiro, it turns out she’s actually just being true to herself — simple as that. I asked him, “What makes her brand unique from a marketing perspective?” He explained, “During interviews, if she gets a question, she’s going to answer it. She speaks her mind.”

So, it’s her transparency and authenticity that makes her relatable. Even her tweets are written by her — it’s obvious by the scrappy pics she takes (see below)! Very similar characteristics to the core principles of marketing to this very age group, aka Millennials.

Shapiro goes on to say, “Lorde is a jumping off point for creativity, no matter the age.” “We have not had good pop music and I think there was a backlash.” Sounds like we need to recognize, Millennials are looking to cut the bullshit. They want the rawness of music and not the glitz and the glamour, the smoke and mirrors.

“The intriguing thing about writing about Lorde is that she is so damned contrary to everything that pop music has become,” said author Marc Shapiro. “She’s a true intellect whose songs have been guided by great authors and deep thinkers rather than the predictable template of current pop music. She’s smart, creative, a true individual and only 17. Stories that are too good to be true but that ultimately are just that makes a biography of Lorde truly something special.”

Buy the ebook for $9.99 at Amazon and or the print version for $16.99.

About Marc Shapiro
Marc Shapiro is the New York Times bestselling author of We Love Jenni – An Unauthorized Biography, The Secret Life of EL James, Who is Katie Holmes? – An Unauthorized Biography, Legally Bieber: Justin Bieber at 18, J.K. Rowling: The Wizard Behind Harry Potter, Justin Bieber: The Fever!, Game: The Resurrection of Tim Tebow and many other bestselling celebrity biographies. He is a freelance entertainment journalist covering film, television, and music for a number of national and international newspapers and magazines.

Guest Post: What The 90’s Taught Us about Public Relations: Branding, Transparency, Digital Capabilities, and Public Opinion Can Bring Your Client Success

26 Mar


By Kate Connors, Senior Account Manager & Social Media Strategist at Media & Communications Strategies

Although I was born in the 80s, I consider myself to be a full-blown 90s child. The TV show Wishbone™ was where I first developed a love of history. If someone uses the word “bop,” my mind immediately goes to my first Bop It™ game and I want to yell back “Twist it – Pull it – Flick it!” When parents complain about their kids having too many stuffed animals, I cringe and think about the multiple boxes of Beanie Babies™ living in my attic that I continue to hope will be worth something one day. But the 90’s weren’t just about all the must have tows and wonderful TV shows; They were also a time when future PR professionals like myself had the opportunity to learn a thing or two about how to bring clients success. Below are a few examples of PR tips we learned from 90s culture and icons.

1) Giving a Face to Your Brand is Crucial – We fell in love with the Olsen twins on Full House, but in reality that was only the beginning of their success. They truly owned their brand and developed movies and products that fit their target audience. In today’s world, where most interactions take place online and not in-person, personalizing and humanizing your brand is crucial to success.

2) If you are Facing a Communications Crisis, Be Transparent: I can’t even begin to list all the wonderful children’s TV shows that aired in the 90s, but there is one show we will never forget for the delightful scandal it brought with it. On July 26, 1991, Pee-wee’s Playhouse host Paul Reubens was arrested for indecent exposure. What did Paul Reuben do to rebuild his reputation? Almost absolutely nothing for the next decade. Reuben’s situation was a no-brainer for the courts. He did what he did and paid a fine. What can we learn from this? If you want to save your career or company and not sit on your butt for ten years, apologize, be transparent and regain the trust in your consumers/fans. Hiding is usually never the answer.

3) Never Discredit Public Opinion – For us 90’s babies, we hear the word “OJ” and our mind does not immediately go to the juice. Instead we think about the OJ Simpson’s trial, which gave rise to the idea that Hollywood can get away with anything. But the takeaway here for PR professionals it that your client’s public image is a huge priority, which is why getting them media coverage before a crisis occurs is important. The more friends you build in the media world, (usually) the less likely it is that they will tear you to shreds a later date. That being said, another lesson here is that no matter what you do, have done or who you know, a great story trumps everything.

4) Digital is the Future – I’m sure many parents cringed when their children suddenly began sporting numerous Tamagotchis and appearing late to dinner because they had to check in on their hand-held pet. But the creators of these little creatures, Akihiro Yokoi of WiZ and Aki Maita of Bandai, were on to something when they made these highly addictive toys. According to survey data released by, “Studies show that Gen Y and Millennial generation– which will comprise more than 50% of the workforce by 2020 – would prefer to use instant messaging or other social media than stop by an office and talk with someone.” So for those of you who talked lovingly to your virtual pet, you weren’t crazy – just ahead of the curve.

So next time you are reminiscing about which Power Rangers™ character was your favorite, think about it in a public relations context. Who doesn’t remember all the diversity conflicts around these action fighting heroes?

About Media & Communications Strategies, Inc:
Media & Communications Strategies, Inc. handles all kinds of critical public relations for US and international clients out of our Washington, D.C. office. We are a founding member of the Public Relations Boutiques International network for constant, far-reaching support. High profile crisis communications is one niche talent, reputation management in all kinds of media is our core expertise and client satisfaction is our specialty.

Music Monday: Tropical Eargasms

24 Mar

Happy Monday, Consuming PR readers! Today kicks off the first of many Music Monday posts. Every Monday, I’ll be sharing my top picks from the week(end) — songs that I’ve found myself, that friends and readers have shared, etc. This will be the place where I showcase music trends and artists to watch.

Today’s Music Monday wraps up a few songs that remind me of living in tropical paradise. Topical house, trop trap, trop step… you tell me which sub-genre 😉

Remember, feel free to tweet me (@ConsumingPR)any tracks and you might just see them showcased here with a shoutout. Happy listening!

ESCADA Launches E-commerce in USA

5 Mar


Luxury fashion brand ESCADA will launch today its online store in the United States of America, following the successful introduction of to the European markets in 2013. Welcome to the 21st Century, ESCADA!

The E-Store will offer a wide range of ESCADA lifestyle products, including apparel and accessories from the ESCADA and ESCADA SPORT brands.

Bruno Sälzer (CEO ESCADA SE) “In the new positioning of ESCADA there is a special focus on the digital world. Especially highlighted are multi-channel-experiences, interaction with the client and an integrated experience of the brand. After our successful launch in Europe one year ago, we are now present in the most important E-Commerce market, the USA.”

Usability and design is likewise important in the ESCADA E-Store. The navigation is easy and intuitive; the elegant design with large-scale images reflects the ESCADA brand identity.

And check this out: All social media channels are integrated into the new online store. The site, which is optimized for mobile applications, ensures an ideal display on all devices. Remember readers, always keep in mind mobile. You’d think it’s a no brainer, but many companies forget all about optimizing and scaling for different devices.

The store finder is placed on all relevant ESCADA E-Store pages and is supposed to stimulate multichannel experiences. In selected ESCADA retail stores sales staff will carry iPads to directly assist clients in placing orders in the E-Store for items that might not be available in the store.

The ESCADA online store provides a variety of different shipping options via Fedex, including free standard ground shipping as well as express shipping. Furthermore, the ESCADA E-Store offers its clients an easy and cost-free returns handling including a 14-day return policy. An exclusive packaging concept completes the range of service offers of the ESCADA E-Store.

Hermes NexTec, specialist in international full-service e-commerce solutions, provides all services along the online value chain including shop, content and IT management and in close collaboration with ESCADA performance marketing. In addition to these services Hermes Fulfilment supplies with warehousing, customer care, finance services and returns management.

Twitter: @ESCADA

Festival to Watch: The Do Lab Presents Lightning in a Bottle 2014

4 Mar

Lightning in a Bottle 2014

Lightning in a Bottle happens Memorial Day Weekend May 22nd-26th at the San Antonio Recreation Area in Bradley, California. Music, art, yoga and more… everything you need to recharge your mind and body. As a street teamer for the festival, I’m always spreading the good word. This festival will put a perma-smile on your face 🙂 And if you aren’t familiar with LIB, you might be with The Do LaB, the folks that support Coachella by featuring up-and-coming electronic acts on their own stage – and, of course, the famous water hose to cool off.

Tickets are on sale now: Get them now and listen to a few of my favorites: Gramatik, Phantogram, Little Dragon, Moby, The Polish Ambassador, Sugarpill, Chet Faker, Baauer (for funsies) and Cashmere Cat. But I can’t wait to discover more music from the lineup!

Follow LIB online: