SDF podcast 10: Big Data is never a be-all and end-all

Amid congressional hearings and FBI investigations in the US about whether and how Russia interfered with the US Presidential Elections, discussions continue about the efficacy and ethics of micro-targeting voters. In our latest and 10th edition of the SmallDataForum podcast, Neville, Sam and Thomas reflect on the outcome of the recent general elections in the UK. This episode’s show notes were written by Thomas Stoeckle. We agree that, unlike last time, Labour did better than the Conservatives digitally at this

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

Fearless Girl

How to get the media on board to end AVE

One of the hurdles along the road of seeing an end to the “advertising value equivalence” (AVE) measurement metric that’s decried by many in the PR and measurement communities is persuading organisations to stop using it. The issue with AVE is well summarised in a white paper published by The Institute for Public Relations in 2003, in which this succinct text appears: We urge you to move away as quickly as possible from statements of the nature, “Our news coverage

Thought / via Pixabay CC0

SDF podcast 9: Either back to the future or fast forward to a new normal

In the latest episode 9 of The Small Data Forum podcast, hosted by Thomas Stoeckle in conversation with regulars Sam Knowles and me, we enjoyed a wide-ranging, lively conversation over the course of 45 minutes on topics as diverse as the 2017 general election campaign (what went wrong for Theresa May and the Conservatives with a clear focus on the politics) and the latest global communications report from the Annenberg School of Communications (we focused especially on PR and AVE).

Labour won social media election - Guardian front page

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

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

Theresa May

Theresa May’s fragile foundation

It was rather a surreal experience watching the BBC’s election night analytics and opinion show on the BBC News Channel on Thursday June 8, from shortly after the closing of the poll at 10pm (I lasted until about 1am on Friday morning). It was the exit poll – a joint effort by the BBC, ITV and Sky News – that set the scene for a night of traumatic change for the ruling Conservative party led by Theresa May, and qualified

British Airways Dreamliner

The big asks of British Airways

It’s hard to know what to fully make of the dreadful mess in which British Airways finds itself today. It follows over three full days of massive disruption to the airline’s business that has resulted in wide scale flight cancellations around the world, huge queues at terminals at the UK’s major airports and many in other countries, and a severe hit on reputation and trust that could cost BA dearly. According to BA, a computer systems failure led to all

Question Everything

SDF podcast 8: Seek out those you can trust

In the latest episode 8 of The Small Data Forum podcast, hosted by Thomas Stoeckle in conversation with regulars Neville Hobson and Sam Knowles, we explore whether following the ‘interesting times’ of 2016, we are seeing some sort of ‘regression to the mean’, with a right wing populist not succeeding in general elections in the Netherlands, with Emmanuel Macron becoming president of France, and with Chelsea FC winning the Premier League (following Leicester City’s surprise success last year). And such

The end of AVE in PR?

If there’s one phrase guaranteed to generate debate in the PR business, it’s ‘advertising value equivalence,’ AVE for short. In simple terms, AVE looks at the volume of space an editorial article takes in a print publication, or the amount of time an editorial audio or video segment plays, and equates its value to the price you’d have paid if you had bought the equivalent-size space or time as advertising. For decades the use of AVE has been a controversial

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