BYE BYE BRUCE, HELLO CAITLYN

It’s Trans-Jenner Time

Risë Birnbaum

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Caitlyn Looking Coy

Just when you think you’ve heard and seen it all…there’s more.   World — meet Caitlyn.  Caitlyn is gracing the July cover of Vanity Fair and, yes, Caitlyn used to be Bruce.  Annie Leibovitz captured Caitlyn for a cover that will go down in history about a his-to-her story.

No, this is not a still from Ex Machina, it’s formerly Bruce Jenner, the worlds’ greatest Olympian, who is looking pretty hot in some lingerie.  I’m not sure she’ll be the next Victoria’s Secret model, wait — strike that.  I think Victoria’s Secret might jump all over this opp.

Remember, this is the same testosterone-fueled person who jumped higher and ran faster than any other Olympian in the world (though hormone levels have probably changed).  And now this javelin-tossing athlete is striking a pose like a 1950’s  pin-up girl.

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Bruce Jenner wins the Decathlon

As the red blooded all American woman that I am, I still drool over pics of Bruce when he won Gold.  That said, I guess Bruce-turned-Caitlyn still looks pretty fetching.

I could crack jokes all day.  It’s too easy.  This is an amazing story that will hopefully liberate men and women who believe they were born the wrong sex and are determined to do something about it.  If Bruce had not become Caitlyn, he might have died.  He and his family admit that.

So, Caitlyn is waaaay out of the closet, way beyond that box of Wheaties and way beyond the limits that we place on ourselves.

Bruce was amazing at the Montreal Olympics in 1976.  But, mon dieux, Caitlyn is even more amazing on the cover of Vanity Fair in 2015.

CRACKING THE BLOGGER CODE

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BY: JASMINE WALTON

In the world of PR, blogger outreach is one of the sharpest, new arrows in our quiver. Why? More laser-targeted impressions, which means the right reach. And it’s only natural that followers are more likely to trust a blogger’s word over a branded ad.

Our zcomm team taps into the blogger world, in addition to other digital marketing tactics, to target specific audiences in industries including health, beauty, food, consumer and non-profits.

One of our key partner bloggers is Kimberly Vetrano, the founder of “She Scribes.” Kimberly doubles as a mother, wife, photographer and freelance writer. She decided to become a blogger because she loves to write, and blogging was a way to write about her life.

Kimberly prides herself on blogging about a variety of topics for a diverse readership. Her tag line is “A little bit of this, a little bit of that.” In fact, her blog topics are heavily influenced by her readers. She makes sure to read her fans’ comments, and even does yearly “polling” to find the topics that her readers find most interesting. In addition to blogging about her life, she also tracks and writes about what’s trending — crafts, recipes and style posts are all hot topics now.

When asked how she keeps her blog so active, Kimberly says her blog is her business, and she treats it that way. Kimberly says, “I make it a priority to post at least once a day, 7 days a week. If I have something planned on the weekend, I’ll write a post ahead of time and schedule it on the weekend.”

Kimberly tries to engage her followers through social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. “Social media influences my blog in a big way…there are plenty of readers who share the same interests and can engage with you about them on social media channels or via comments on the blog posts.”

Kimberly’s favorite social media outlet is Facebook. “I feel like I can connect with readers more on that platform. I can scroll down and read comments and reply to them when I have a chance. I feel like Facebook is more personal.”

When relevant brands come to zcomm for blogger outreach, we call Kimberly (and lots of other bloggers) with the kind of content that she loves. Because we know what she likes. So, when reaching out to bloggers, take time to read the blog on a regular basis BEFORE you contact them so you know exactly what they write about and the content that floats their boat. That’s the key to cracking the blogger code.

Social Media and the Election

This post is part of a series written by zcomm interns. Be sure to check back each week for their take on the latest in the public relations industry. This week, Hailey discusses the upcoming election and the role social media plays.

For months now, the internet has been flooded with political news and opinions. I’ve seen countless Facebook posts and tweets about the upcoming election and its candidates, but are all of these social media users actually planning to vote? Anyone can sit on the internet and rant and rave about candidates, but I hope that those who truly care will take their opinions to the polls.

During the third presidential debate, my roommate and I noticed that if we were to base the election results on candidate popularity, Barack Obama would win by a landslide. However, I saw someone post about the same concept, except that Mitt Romney would be the victor. Initially I thought my Facebook friend must be blind, but it makes sense. The majority of my Facebook friends and Twitter followers grew up near me, went to college with me, or were in my sorority, so it’s likely that we share similar views. You can’t really get a glimpse of the majority when you’re surrounded by others much like yourself.

To get a better idea of candidate popularity on social media, I was going to compare the exact amount of Facebook “likes” both Obama and Romney have, but in the past five minutes alone Obama has gained more than 2,000 likes. Each time I refresh the page, the number continues to grow. The same goes for Romney. Although both are seeing increasing numbers, Obama has nearly 32 million “likes,” while Romney has just over 12 million (as of 11:10 a.m. EST).

There’s a huge gap here, but is social media support in any way indicative of election results? I guess only time will tell.

The Queen Bee & PR

It’s the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, a time of pomp and circumstance that only the Brits do so well.  Flags & fireworks.  Really big hats & low curtsies.  Uniforms & striped cravats.  It’s a big deal.  The British stock market is closed for four whole days.  (I’d go crazy without seeing my Facebook stock go face down).

The last time we heard “The British are Coming” to this degree was either the Revolutionary War or The Beatles.

So, it’s quite a spectacle for us on the other side of the pond and I have a few quick thoughts.

First, they didn’t need much PR because thanks to every news outlet in the world setting up camp in London, AND a trillion (might be slight overstatement) Tweets, blogs, Facebook mentions, viral videos and pics, this Jubilee is making quite an impression (or impressions in PR lingo).   Check out CNN’s site and the official Diamond Jubilee site to see all the action.

Trust me, there was a lot less social media for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977; Bill Gates; was just getting started and Mark (hoodie) Zuckerberg wasn’t even born yet.

Personally, I wonder how all these queen-o-philes can get so about pumped up about a woman who always looks as if she’s having a colonoscopy…without meds.

But, heck, London is flourishing, Kate and Will are cool and Harry is the Monarch’s true dude.  Lord is he a hottie.  Make that Prince Hottie.

So what if the weather sucks, the Royals are shivering and half the crowd is in arctic parkas?  This is a once-in-a-lifetime event with a family that rivals the TV show Dallas in the ratings (biting corgis, g&ts, nazi uniforms, polo ponies, Camilla).  I only wish Bravo’s Andy Cohen would step up to the plate with a “Royal Housewives” series.  The world would watch that, just as we’ve been glued to our smart phones and tellies for the real thing.  Mazels your Royal Highness.

Has buying Facebook fans become a problem?

This post is part of a series written by zcomm interns. Be sure to check back each week for their take on the latest in the public relations industry. This week, Hailey discusses the recent news about musicians buying fans on Facebook.

Recently, a graphic emerged on the internet that accuses a handful well-known DJs of buying Facebook fans. They’ve received a lot of negative feedback, although no one has been able to prove whether or not they did in fact purchase fans. Even if some of their Facebook fans were purchased, it was likely done by their management or public relations team. I have a hard time picturing David Guetta sitting at a computer late at night searching for the best bargain on 500 fans.

If some of their fans were purchased, this plan seems to have backfired. They’ve received nothing but criticism. With Facebook fans or Twitter followers, quality should be better than quantity. This holds true for most companies. It doesn’t matter how many fans you have. What matters is how many fans interact with you.

In my eyes, buying Facebook fans diminishes your credibility. It makes your company or brand look desperate. The companies you can hire to buy these fans obviously state otherwise. I find their claims rather hilarious. Here’s what FansGalore
can do for you:

-For Facebook : FansGalore taps into its network of people who are
interested in learning about new products and brands. These
individuals are also excellent networkers and relationship builders –
all of them have over 5,000 friends that they share and converse
with!,
-For Twitter : We use the follow-back method, finding individuals or
brands who share similar interests to you, and following them. Twitter
etiquette often drives those who are followed to follow you back.
There’s a little more magic that goes on in our back-end, but for the
most part, it’s straightforward.

I honestly laughed out loud when I read this for the first time. I’d like to meet one of these individuals and find out what makes him/her an excellent networker, or even just to find out if these individuals are in fact real people. The whole thing just seems sketchy to me, and I think companies should stay far away from the concept of buying fans.

Your most important fans are those than actually like your company or brand enough to press the like button. Even more important are the ones who engage with you on a regular basis and those who will affect your business. Purchasing fans essentially just increases your numbers online, but makes you look bad. Earn your fans, don’t buy them.

Social media has changed the world

This post is part of a series written by zcomm interns. Be sure to check back each week for their take on the latest in the public relations industry. This week, Justin discusses social media’s effect on our lives.

I think we have all heard this statistic before: if Facebook were a country, it would be the third most populated country in the world with more than 845 million monthly users. In addition, Twitter just hit 500 million users as of 3 p.m. on February 22, 2012. So it is pretty easy to see that social media is now in full-blown takeover mode.

Social media is in everything we do

When we download a new application on our phones, we instantly link it to Facebook and Twitter. A phone number is no longer enough when we meet people; we need to be Facebook friends or follow them on Twitter. And forget calling or texting people; we would rather Facebook message or Tweet at somebody.

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SIN CENTRAL

Guilty pleasures — everyone’s
got ‘em but not everyone is gutsy enough to admit ‘em.  Well, must be the hot summer sun here in DC
or too many bus fumes, but here’s my list (not in any special order):


Burgers – ya gotta understand
I’m a relatively healthy eater, but happen to have this thing for juicy cheeseburgers
with tomato, pickle, ketchup, mayo and mustard. 
And with each bite I take, I just slather on more Hellmann’s.  Maybe I’m a condiment junkie disguised as
burger addict.  Add the fact I was
brought up Kosher and it doesn’t quite compute.

 

Vegas – what’s better than a
few all-nighters loaded with craps, clubs, good eats and then an affordable
room that could sleep 12?  Actually the
bathroom sleeps 12.

 

Fast cars – I know they’re
definitely not “green,” but I’ve been a car lover all my life and ‘til now have
liked cars that (sadly) guzzle gas like a 1960 Corvette.  But, I am eyeing the new Tesla.

 

Any movie – doesn’t matter if
it’s Journey to the Center of the Earth (with Pat Boone) or a Sundance award
winner, I will literally watch anything on a big screen where they also sell
popcorn.  I am that discriminating.
 

Reality TV – Def taken with every
show from “The Fatsos of Marin County” to “Watch Me Eat Bugs.”  Made up the titles, but you catch my drift.

 
Moose – Love my 15 year old maltese,
moose.  Talk to him, sing to him and if
anyone saw me they would take me away in a net and lock me up for life.

Hamptons – OK, so I know it’s a bit of “my Porsche is bigger
than your Porsche” out there, but beaches are beautiful, friends are
long-standing and cocktail hour is from like 4pm to whenever.

 

Facebook –No, I’m not a 23 yr
old (but have one) but it is such a kick to connect with “kids” I was friends
with and barely said a word to in high school. 
Unfortunately most look like my grandparents these days.
 

Online dating– as a single mom with a college grad on the west coast, it's a good way to fill time while scouting out the landscape. And if Jon Hamm's twin brother happens to be online within 50 miles of DC, so much the better.

-Risë