Does your PR agency really understand Page Rank? A client checklist.


Talking to various people over the last weeks, it is clear that a small but growing number of PR firms are attempting to use Page Rank as a metric for measuring the value of online media coverage.  However, it seems that some either don’t really understand what Page Rank is – or are misleading clients over the real Page Rank (and value) that their coverage has delivered.

For example, I’ve been told of a few firms who if they gain a piece of client coverage on, say, Computing’s web site, will claim that the value of the coverage is Page Rank 6.  However, what they really mean is that the Computing home page has a Page Rank of 6 – the actual page where the coverage appeared will almost certainly have a Page Rank of 0. That’s a mighty big difference.

In fact, almost all press coverage (or indeed any new web page) will have a Page Rank of 0 to begin with. Any new page added to a site will first have to be indexed by Google. And it takes Google time to take account of factors that will determine what Page Rank should be assigned. It is certainly possible to get Page Rank up to 1 0r 2 relatively quickly if people begin linking to the coverage  – but unless you get some very high Page Ranked backlinks rapidly, the chances that a piece of coverage will have gained a Page Rank of 5 or higher in the space of a few days is highly unlikely.

Traditionally, gaining a piece of coverage on a major site like the BBC would be cause for celebration. And I’m not saying it shouldn’t still be. However, we need to be honest about what value that might really deliver. And why we need to be careful about using Page Rank as a PR metric.

For example, the Guardian has a massive 3.8 million unique visitors and 130 million page views per month in the UK alone. Some PR firms might be tempted to say that getting coverage on The Guardian site provides an OTS (opportunity to see) of 3.8 Million. Of course, this is not exactly the case. The Guardian has roughly 20.3 million indexed pages – not of all of these are going to be editorial pages, but most will be. Fact is, not all pages are equal. Only the publishers themselves know the real data, but I’d hazard a guess that a smaller percentage of the total number of indexed pages gain the majority of site traffic. That’s the same for any website.  The challenge with using Page Rank as a PR metric is that it is an indirect measure of traffic. If you think about it, if Google determines that a page has a higher relative importance than another then it is likely to have more traffic. In which case, try randomly sampling some pages from the BBC and other major sites and you’ll probably find that the Page Rank is o.

Here is another example. This story was one of the Most Popular on the BBC site a few days ago. However, it has a Page Rank of 0. In spite of 49 backlinks, including backlinks from pages with rankings of 7. Now the Page Rank may change over time, but again, this is unlikely unless further interest is generated via additional backlinks.

That’s not to say that over time, an article might not be able to build a higher Page Rank. But how many PR firms do you know that would recommend and implement an ongoing “merchandising” strategy to try and generate more backlinks and comments to a piece of coverage in order to improve Page Rank? Or would be able to track changes in Page Rank over time and demonstrate what factors may have caused that change in Page Rank? And have a plan for using that change in Page Rank to generate further traffic to the client’s website? (Disclosure: this is a standard approach at escherman)

The traditional PR mindset is one that says once a piece of coverage has appeared, the job is pretty much done (other than to prepare a clippings book and invoice the client). Part of the opportunity with online PR is that generating the initial coverage can in fact be the start rather than the end of the process.

So beware of PR firms touting Page Rank as a metric. Here’s a handy quick checklist of things to ask them:

1. Explain what Page Rank is and why it is important. Hint: go here to find out for yourself.

2. If a PR firm claims a high Page Rank for a piece of coverage that has appeared in the last 2 days, ask them to explain what factors have caused this to be the case.

3. Ask them if they have a plan for potentially improving the Page Rank of a piece of coverage – and how they would track that over time

How to Give a Lousy Presentation: BusinessWeek


9. Don’t bother with a backup plan. If you need a live Internet connection to demo a site, don’t bother making a screen shot of the site in case the connection doesn’t work. That way, you’ll be at a complete loss for words when the connection fails.

10. Don’t practice. At all. Practicing a presentation out loud takes work and will make you look far too polished. Just wing it.

Good check list – points 9 and 10 in this BusinessWeek piece struck a chord

For Teens, Has Texting Replaced Talking? – The Juggle – WSJ


“My son had racked up nearly 2,000 incoming text messages, and had sent nearly as many. That means he was having more than 60 two-way communications via text message every day.” Sue Shellenbarger

The Top 100 UK tech folk to follow on Twitter: Pocket-lint


UPDATE ON UPDATE: To make even more clear I’m not simply reposting and attempting to claim all the glory, you’ll have to go to the Pocket-lint site for the full list.
UPDATE: Just so everyone is clear, this is NOT my list, I’m simply reposting – this is the list from the original Pocket-lint post here.  As Richard (see comments below) pointed out, there was no link to the original article – my apologies – it’s there now.
The Top 100 UK tech folk to follow on Twitter 0

3 September 2009 10:00 GMT / By Dan Sung

Twitter’s a pretty big yard these days. So, with no time to go chasing wild geese around, your friendly neighbourhood Pocket-lint has compiled a list of the finest geek minds and microblogging wordsmiths in the UK that you should follow for all things tech.

Without further ado, in no particular order and by their own bios, here are the top 100 tweeters you should be following.

A

@AlmostZara – Zara Rabinowicz writes about technology and beauty and likes gadgets, gaming and frozen yogurt. She is Staff Writer for Stuff Magazine.
@alexfarber – i like news and booze.
@andylim – Half Chinese, half Spanish Londoner. Editorial director @recombu – I love mobile phones like I love air. Founder UKTJPR.com and @UKTJPR.
@adamhleach – tech analyst, photographer and londoner
@asimqureshi – Consumer Technology PR – anything that makes life that bit more simple and pleasurable!!
@alanburkittgray – Editor of Global Telecoms Business magazine. See burkitt-gray.com for other links

Newspaper people on Twitter – Media UK


Newspaper people on Twitter

We list the “top of the twits” for newspaper titles (a-z) and people (a-z). Media UK runs a variety of services on Twitter too – not least, @mediauk – follow us!

Followers Following Ratio
1.

Jemima Kiss: Journalist, The Guardian

13,604 298 2.2%
2.

Charles Arthur: Journalist, The Guardian

8,684 496 5.7%
3.

Jack Schofield: Journalist, The Guardian

6,618 876 13.2%
4.

Emily Bell: Journalist, The Guardian

4,642 304 6.5%
5.

Bobbie Johnson: Journalist, The Guardian

4,411 895 20.3%
6.

Tim Bradshaw: Journalist, Financial Times

4,106 1,350 32.9%
7.

Shane Richmond: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

3,464 1,177 34.0%
8.

Joanna Geary: Journalist, The Times

2,611 760 29.1%
9.

Ian Douglas: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

2,237 1,958 87.5%
10.

Ruth Gledhill: Journalist, The Times

2,034 1,965 96.6%
11.

Chris Nuttall: Journalist, Financial Times

2,022 128 6.3%
12.

Toby Harnden: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

1,825 425 23.3%
13.

Steve Wollaston: Digital Editor, Sunday Mercury

1,727 1,902 110.1%
14.

Harry Wallop: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

1,690 207 12.2%
15.

Jo Wadsworth: Journalist, The Argus

1,562 1,920 122.9%
16.

Sarah Hartley: Journalist, Manchester Evening News

1,502 348 23.2%
17.

Gideon Rachman: Journalist, Financial Times

1,465 30 2.0%
18.

Alison Gow: Journalist, Liverpool Daily Post

1,440 493 34.2%
19.

Marc Reeves: Editor, The Birmingham Post

1,407 942 67.0%
20.

Claudine Beaumont: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

1,298 277 21.3%
21.

Justin Williams: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

1,202 476 39.6%
22.

Will Lewis: Editor, The Daily Telegraph

1,078 52 4.8%
23.

Sarah Ebner: Digital Editor, The Times

892 830 93.0%
24.

Michael Bailey: Journalist, Norwich Evening News

809 1,511 186.8%
25.

Samantha Shepherd: Journalist, Daily Echo

753 390 51.8%
26.

Anna Arco: Journalist, The Catholic Herald

750 738 98.4%
27.

Tom Scotney: Journalist, The Birmingham Post

736 470 63.9%
28.

Luke Coppen: Editor, The Catholic Herald

707 597 84.4%
29.

Sarah Booker: Digital Editor, Worthing Herald

689 847 122.9%
30.

Paul Cockerton: Digital Editor, Lancashire Telegraph

597 586 98.2%
31.

Jon Swaine: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

508 112 22.0%
32.

David Ottewell: Journalist, Manchester Evening News

466 215 46.1%
33.

Martin Beckford: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

463 139 30.0%
34.

David Maclean: Journalist, The Shields Gazette

445 119 26.7%
35.

Simon Donohue: Journalist, Manchester Evening News

417 376 90.2%
36.

Jane Perrone: Journalist, The Guardian

386 164 42.5%
37.

Edward Roussel: Journalist, The Daily Telegraph

382 53 13.9%
38.

Ian Wylie: Journalist, Manchester Evening News

370 102 27.6%
39.

Kat Brown: Journalist, thelondonpaper

287 182 63.4%
40.

Jon Welch: Journalist, Eastern Daily Press

265 241 90.9%
41.

Matt Cornish: Editor, St Neots News & Crier

238 306 128.6%
42.

Sam Blackledge: Journalist, Surrey Advertiser

223 332 148.9%
43.

Iain Hepburn: Digital Editor, Daily Record

222 317 142.8%
44.

Dan Kerins: Journalist, Southern Daily Echo

192 158 82.3%
45.

Amar Singh: Journalist, London Evening Standard

185 235 127.0%
46.

Jonny Fordham: Journalist, Reading Evening Post

178 77 43.3%
47.

Martin Smith: Journalist, Coventry Telegraph

174 71 40.8%
48.

Steve Dyson: Editor, Birmingham Mail

166 7 4.2%
49.

Jonathan Barnes: Journalist, Ipswich Evening Star

135 146 108.1%
50.

Murray Kelso: Digital Editor, Worcester News

119 62 52.1%
51.

Kevin Ward: Editor, Worcester News

118 64 54.2%
52.

Tony Larner: Editor, Sunday Mercury

116 94 81.0%
53.

Carolyn McCall: Editor, The Guardian

116 38 32.8%
54.

Vicki Kellaway: Journalist, Liverpool Echo

95 181 190.5%
55.

John McKie: Columnist, Daily Record

93 111 119.4%
56.

David Brookes: Editor, Coventry Telegraph

92 18 19.6%
57.

Maria Breslin: Station Manager, Liverpool Echo

81 11 13.6%
58.

Tristan Harris: Editor, Bromsgrove Standard

65 61 93.8%
59.

Miriam Phillips: Journalist, Dorset Echo

64 107 167.2%
60.

Chine Mbubaegbu: Journalist, Reading Evening Post

60 69 115.0%
61.

Martin Hamer: Digital Editor, Lancashire Evening Post

55 47 85.5%
62.

Steve Carley: Journalist, Worcester News

50 9 18.0%
63.

Tim Nixon: Journalist, Lancashire Telegraph

26 34 130.8%
64.

Rob George: Journalist, Bromsgrove Standard

19 43 226.3%
65.

Kate Whiteside: Digital Editor, The Westmorland Gazette

6 14 233.3%

Interesting to note that The Guardian occupies the top 5 slots!

Social Media Guidelines: MIchael Gerrard – IDC


I’ve posted a couple of blogs recently about the rise of the social media function and how BtoB companies can best leverage social media. A common theme has been the need for marketing to provide guidance, guidelines and infrastructure without stifling the power of this new channel to reach customers, prospects and influencers. To help with your journey, I’ve included below a list of social media guidelines that several companies have published:

  • Cisco: http://blogs.cisco.com/news/comments/ciscos_internet_postings_policy/
  • Dell: http://www.dell.com/content/topics/global.aspx/policy/en/policy?c=us&1=en&s+corp&~section=019
  • Mayo Clinic: http://sharing.mayoclinic.org/guidelines/for-mayo-clinic-employees/
  • BT: http://richarddennison.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/bt-social-media-guidelines-mar09.pdf
  • eBay: http://ebayinkblog.com/2009/03/06/new-social-media-guidelines-for-reporting-company-information/
  • HP: http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/blogs/codeofconduct.html
  • IBM: http://www.ibm.com/blogs/zz/en/guidelines.html
  • Intel: http://www.intel.com/sites/sitewide/en_US/social-media.htm
  • SAP: http://www.sapweb20.com/blog/2009/07/sap-social-media-guidelines-2009/#
  • Sun: http://www.sun.com/communities/guidelines.jsp
  • Have any others to share?. . . Please comment below.

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