For Immediate Release 109: CEOs Torturing English

Shel and I recorded the October edition of the monthly Hobson & Holtz Report. This month’s topics: Three distinguished PhDs propose a Magna Carta for Artificial Intelligence. Too soon? Research establishes a connection between CEOs who mangle English during analyst calls and falling share prices. What can PR agencies and associations do to build a reputation of trust in the wake of the Bell Pottinger scandal? New data points reinforce the importance of companies taking positions on social and political issues. Most importantly, Edelman’s 2017 Earned Brand study found that 30% of consumers are “belief-driven” buyers. In the UK, political activists are using an app to influence party conference votes. Two crises — one from Facebook and one from Unilever’s […]

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For Immediate Release 105: Centre Stage for Credible Sources

Shel and I got together for the September edition of The Hobson & Holtz Report to talk about these topics: The self-inflicted downfall of the UK PR agency Bell Pottinger (and kudos to the PRCA for putting teeth in its ethics code) How various fields will be affected by speech recognition (including PR and communications) Mitch Joel’s open letter to the advertising industry: Let’s not mess up ads for voice The proliferation of fake scientific journals (and what it means for the PR industry) The Pew Research Center has identified five “types” of people who search for facts and information, with implications for content marketing Are Americanisms killing British English (and does it matter)? In his Tech Report, Dan York […]

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For Immediate Release 100: Locked and Loaded

Using Twitter

In the August episode of The Hobson & Holtz Report, Shel and I talked about these topics: The Society for New Communications Research has launched an initiative to assess options for the communications industry to address fake news. An artificial intelligence bot can detect plagiarism (85% of the time). Supporters of US President Donald Trump are amplifying their tweets through a little-known Twitter feature that lets you create and name a Direct Message group. And let’s talk about that twice-daily folder the president gets filled with only positive coverage about him. Agencies are cropping up that focus exclusively on Generation Z. The Westin hotel in Buffalo, NY, is putting an Amazon Echo in every room. Ask Alexa for a toothbrush […]

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For Immediate Release 96: The crisis that keeps on giving

In the July installment of The Hobson & Holtz Report, Shel and I talked about these topics: A 15-year-old participating in a work experience program took over the Twitter account of the beleaguered Southern Rail in the UK. The response to #AskEddie was undoubtedly a welcome break for Southern Rail’s social media team, but what did it ultimately accomplish? The online publication Quartz experiments with display-type ads in the text of stories that let users ask an artificial intelligence-based chatbot named Hugo for more information about just the stuff you’re interested in. Will artificial intelligence eventually take over the creative side of content marketing? Takata’s air bag crisis is in its second decade, leading ultimately to the once-mighty company’s bankruptcy. […]

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For Immediate Release 92: Marketing failures of the UK’s Conservative Party

Labour won social media election - Guardian front page

We said we’d do one episode together of the For Immediate Release podcast as a ‘limited return engagement,’ emulating The Hobson and Holtz Report that Shel and I did for ten years. We did do that with episode 84 in April. We enjoyed it so much we decided to do another one, and so we recorded episode 92 yesterday. In keeping with our ‘hefty but good’ slogan, Shel and I enjoyed a conversation over an hour and forty minutes that covered a big agenda: There’s a new mobile-based social network that has been described as Twitter for audio. Neville has been using Hear Me Out for a week, and Shel has been listening to the 42-second audio clips. Neville delved […]

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