On April 22, Colleen Coplick took the helm at b5media blog Buzz Networker, replacing former blogger Kevin Palmer. Taking charge of an established blog is always a hard thing, I know that for a fact (actually, it goes for most things), but it is something that happens all the time, with people buying and selling blogs. What makes this switch extra interesting is the fact that Colleen will be blogging about “PR 2.0”, which means social media and more, and she’ll be doing that with her 7 years of traditional PR backing her.
Should prove to be an interesting ride, so I sent her some questions, resulting in a short interview piece about Buzz Networker here, and a longer one coming to BloggerTalks later on.
Congratulations on taking over Buzz Networker, a b5media blog! What will you do with it?
I’m planning on examining the where PR, Social Media and Business intersect. I’ll be leveraging my network to interview as many interesting people in these spaces as I can including Loic Lemeur from Seesmic, Tara Hunt from HorsePigCow and Charlene Li from Forrester. I tend to be pretty opinionated however, so I wouldn’t be surprised if I end up generating some controversy. :)
You’ve branded yourself a PR rockstar. How will you use your knowledge in this on Buzz Networker?
I’ve been in PR for 7 years and understand very very clearly how to do it *right*. With the rise of social media, PR people need to understand how to use these tactics correctly. I hope to be able to apply my knowledge of both PR and social media to help people to understand how they can apply these tactics to their current promotions.
You got the gig more or less via Twitter, and have already written several posts about the service. What’s the ideal use of microblogs? What’s the point of 140 character messages anyway?
I love Twitter! It’s quite honestly changed my life. I know it sounds silly, but I’ve had things happen through Twitter that would never have happened otherwise. I think that the ideal use of Twitter, and microblogging in general is the conversation that is sparked. The connections made with people around the world – like yourself – that I would never connect to in real life. There are ways companies can use it to engage their consumers in conversation as well as promote their brands. The 140 character messages make you succinct. Anything you’ve got to say that’s longer than that needs to be reserved for blogs, emails or your website.
What are the 3 most obvious PR mistakes made by blogs?
I think that that most obvious mistakes made by blogs is that the writers aren’t honest or transparent. If a company is writing a blog, they need to be very clear about WHO is writing it. Take a look at the Southwest Airlines blog – they are very clear about who contributes the posts. Also, the frequency of the updates is important. you’ve got to be consistent – it definitely doesn’t have to be DAILY, but blogging is not something you can do once and then stop, especially if you want your readers to respect and believe you. The third main error that blogs make is in their posts themselves – no images, boring subject lines… you’ve got to engage your audience and make them want to come back to your site for more!
Congratulations to Colleen on her new gig, and thanks for answering these quick questions! Do visit Buzz Networker and see what she does with the blog, and keep a lookout for a longer interview focusing more on the PR aspects of blogging over at BloggerTalks.
Thord Daniel Hedengren is a designer, writer, and blogger, and also the former editor of The Blog Herald. He used to be a hotshot in the gaming industry in Sweden, but sold everything and went International. Most recently he wrote a book called Smashing WordPress: Beyond the Blog, and does loads of kickass design.