Capitalize the first word in a sentence. Sure, you knew that, right?
But what about capitalizing titles that appear before names, but not after? You’ll learn that and much more in one of the articles in our most recent BuzzWise newsletter!
We’ll also give you an inside look at one of the increasingly popular tools keeping our Coles creative team busy … VIDEO!
And what’s being dubbed content marketing’s quiet giant? It’s SlideShare! Find out more!
From a public relations standpoint, do you think the PR team at McDonald’s should have reached out to Charles Ramsey, one of the rescuers of the three women held for a decade in a Cleveland home?
Custom App Helps Guests Navigate Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar’s Extensive Wine List Using an iPad
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar launched the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™, a custom app on iPad that helps Guests easily navigate the restaurant’s extensive wine list tableside or at the bar. Offered at each of its 65 locations nationwide, the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ design mirrors the restaurant’s décor with a custom-designed case and color palette.
“For our Guests, the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ takes the guessing out of ordering wine,” said National Director of Wine Maeve Pesquera. “We look forward to enhancing the experiences of our Guests and taking the intimidation factor out of wine.”
The application was developed by National Wine Director Maeve Pesquera, and the brand’s National IT Training Coordinator Craig Sheppard.
As the contemporary iteration of the classic American steakhouse, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar is at the forefront of both technology and wine. Noted industry-wide for its technological advances and offerings, the brand heralds the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ launch as the evolution of the successful Fleming’s 100®, its award-winning wine program that features 100 wines by the glass. Not only does the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ boast easy-to-use, intuitive and interactive software, but it also provides label-specific tasting notes and, in some cases, the story behind the wine.
Another unique and differentiating element to the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ is the ability for Guests to match their current mood with specific varietal categories and tastes, providing a customized experience with the “What’s Your Mood” function. White wine moods range from Fragrant & Fruity to Rich & Elegant, red wine moods include Big & Intense and Rich & Voluptuous, and sweet wine moods feature Sweet & Mouthwatering and Sweet & Powerful. The Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ Mood Matcher function offers more than 10 moods with various wine selections for each to satisfy Guests’ ever-changing tastes.
Available tableside or at the bar, the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ has other standard features including:
• Wine List Tab – Sorts wines in progressive order from lightest to fullest by region, varietal, Fleming’s 100® selections, wines rated at 90+ by Robert Parker Wine, Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast and local selections chosen by the location’s Wine Manager;
• Maeve’s Raves – Presents wines selections recommended by the National Director of Wine Maeve Pesquera;
• Perfect Pairings – Showcases wine and food pairings based on the Guests’ menu selection by providing three perfectly paired wine options that deliciously accentuates complementary flavors. This takes the guesswork out of selecting the perfect glass of wine for each course;
• Spin the Bottle – Provides a fun and adventurous take on ordering wine for the indecisive. The bottle icon spins and lands on a different selection each time;
• Share This Wine – Gives Fleming’s Guests the ability to email themselves any wine on the wine list. The email comes to the Guest’s inbox complete with their new favorite wine, tasting notes and an image of the label;
• Register for ‘Friend of Fleming’s’ – Encourages Guests to sign up directly from the Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ to receive exclusive offers from Fleming’s and the opportunity to be the first to know about seasonal menus, exclusive wine tasting events and other extended offers;
• Tonight’s Features – Gives the inside scoop on everything happening at your Fleming’s tonight.
“Fleming’s has a 15-year history of innovation,” states Pesquera. “It’s in our heritage to adapt to our Guests’ changing tastes and needs as their daily lives seamlessly integrate technology. The Fleming’s WiNEPAD™ is the next natural step to giving Guests what they want – an exciting and educational interactive dining experience.”
For more information on Fleming’s or to make reservations, please visit www.flemingssteakhouse.com.
How do you like this television commercial for a transmission shop?
Before you ask — yes, it is a real ad for a real business. With nearly 700,000 views and counting, it’s also become quite popular on YouTube. The Mythic Show even did a follow up video showing how this wonderful piece of advertising cheese came together.
It’s banged around social media quite a bit, too, with typical comments ranging from “creepy” to “hilarious!” It’s certainly one of those love-it-or-hate-it deals. I noticed that men tended to find it funny, while most women regarded it as offensive. Several observers commented on the YouTube page that female customers might be less inclined to patronize a repair shop that features hoochie mamas shaking it in a marketing outreach.
But where is that elusive line between “edgy” and offensive? Advertisers often outwork each other to produce the most out-there piece they can. Think of the Super Bowl ads, which are often an exercise in one-upsmanship for the most off-the-wall 30-second spot. Millions of dollars and eyeballs are at stake.
But as most businesses tend to be rather risk-averse, is going for the bleeding edge really the best way to go?
Any company that tries to be funny or forward-thinking in its advertising has to be willing to suffer some backlash from time to time. One of the most high-profile recent examples is Mountain Dew having to pull an ad depicting five African-American men and a goat in a police lineup. It managed to be accused of racism, sexism, making light of violence and even animal cruelty.
According to PR Daily, one professor dubbed it “arguably the most racist commercial in history.”
That ad was never intended for broadcast television. But even web-only outreach runs the risk of hurting the very products and companies they’re supposed to pitch. USA Today summed it up best when it referred to the spot simply as a “dumb ad.”
Other ads that have been pulled recently after an outcry include one from Hyundai that featured a man trying to asphyxiate himself in his car’s exhaust and a McDonald’s poster of a depressed woman, telling her “You’re not alone. Millions of people love the Big Mac.”
The problem with humorous, edgy advertising is that cultural mores are so different from community to community. For instance, Ford must have thought it was OK to feature an ad with three scantily clad women bound and gagged in the back of a Figo compact car. It was supposed to promote how big the cargo area is. Instead it resulted in a lot of apologies from Ford and the British ad agency that created it.
The truth is that when a company exec says they want an “edgy” piece, they’re usually thinking elbow-in-the-ribs rather than avant garde.
You’ve probably heard by now about the announcement by NBA player Jason Collins that he’s gay. It’s being hailed by the media as a major event, both culturally and in sports.
Veteran media reporter Howard Kurtz, writing at the Daily Beast, calls the media’s reaction to Collins’ announcement a “bear hug.” The reaction has indeed been overwhelmingly positive, with other athletes, politicians and pundits praising Collins for being the first openly gay player in a major U.S. professional sport.
But are there other motives on Collins’ part with his announcement, other than standing up for homosexual athletes who shouldn’t have to hide who they are from teammates and fans?
As an avid NBA follower and now a marketing guy, I couldn’t help reading Collins announcement piece in Sports Illustrated without making a few connections.
Most casual fans have never even heard of Collins, and it’s no surprise. He’s been a pretty marginal player during his 12-year career, mostly coming off the bench and putting up unimpressive stats. Collins has stuck around by sheer dint of being 7 feet tall, plus a lot of hustle.
Reading Collins’ self-authored article, it’s hard to miss the overt pitch he was making to continue his career. At age 34, Collins is a free agent looking for a new team. He repeatedly referenced his reputation for tough defense and contributing to team harmony, aka “a pro’s pro.” The unspoken message seemed directed to NBA general managers: “Sign me!”
Kurtz noticed the same thing: “I know the news was billed as a cataclysmic event, as no male pro athlete in a major team sport had come out, so Collins deserves credit for stepping forward. But if anything, it sounds like a good career move, given the overwhelmingly positive reaction,” he wrote in the Daily Beast.
Having only played in about half the regular season games this year, Collins ended up traded to the lowly Washington Wizards, for whom he averaged a cellar-dweller 0.7 points per game. My point is not to diminish the bravery of Collins’ act, but to question whether there are not other public relations factors at work.
The blunt truth is that Collins had probably already reached the natural end of his career, and would have struggled to find work next year. Speaking on ESPN’s “Pardon the Interruption,” longtime sports columnist Michael Wilbon put Collins’ chance of landing another team next season at 50-50. Even that might be optimistic.
The Washington Post aptly put it this way: “While he would represent a relatively inexpensive option for a team in need of a physical defender at the veteran minimum salary of roughly $1.35 million, Collins will turn 35 in December and is at a stage in his career when declining, low-impact players are generally pushed aside.”
So what are the implications for the NBA if Collins doesn’t get picked up by a team next year? To much of the world, it will look as if the league shoved him out because of his announcement about being gay.
Another factor to consider is endorsement contracts, which can be even more lucrative than an NBA paycheck. For months various media outlets have written about the huge potential payday awaiting the first pro athlete to come out — a conversation that intensified after Collins crossed that barrier.
There’s no denying Collins has done something historic that should encourage other gay athletes to come out of the closet. Kevin Allen at PR Daily summed it up well: “Collins will pave the way for other athletes to feel safe making similar announcements. We’re still in for more firsts — first Major League Baseball player, NFL player, NHL player, etc. — but Collins will forever be lauded for his courage.”
But it could also end up being a savvy PR move that might extend his career by several years and earn him millions more in salary and endorsements.
Congressman Steve Cohen of Tennessee isn’t the first person to make a Tweet that he later regretted. During the president’s most recent State of the Union address, the Democrat representative sent out some tweets to a twentysomething bikini model that seemed overly familiar: “Happy Valentines beautiful girl,” he wrote.
In the old days of political communication, it would be easy to hide such information. If it was a speech that no one recorded, claim it never happened. If it was a letter, tear it up. But now with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and other social media, such things are recorded for all posterity.
Even deleting the offending Tweet or post isn’t a surefire way to save face. A group called the Sunlight Foundation makes it the group’s mission to catalog social media communications by politicians in case they later decide to delete them. In Cohen’s case, his Tweets quickly spread from the blogosphere to mainstream political media.
It turned out that Cohen was simply communicating with his daughter — which was notable because the press and public hadn’t known that the never-married representative even had any children.
The story got weirder. Cohen, who turns out to be pretty social media-savvy, told the media he had “punked” them with that and other seemingly controversial tweets, because he knew they would be picked up by the mainstream press. He called it a planned move called “tweet and delete.”
With this tactic, a person or group tweets something they know will raise eyebrows, then delete it shortly thereafter. Social media monitors will pick up on the move and broadcast it out to the world — thereby raising far more attention to the information than it otherwise would have received.
“It occurred to me that a perfectly innocent, factually correct tweet, once deleted, would receive great media attention. And that is exactly what happened,” Cohen wrote.
Brad Phillips at PR Daily opined that this might make for a daring PR strategy by a company looking to be seen as edgy in the marketplace. But, he concludes, “this strikes me as a dangerous game to play.”
There’s also the danger of having your social media account hacked or cloned. Recently the Associated Press’ Twitter account was briefly taken over by pranksters who Tweeted that the White House had been attacked by terrorists and President Obama seriously injured. The fraud was corrected minutes later, but it sent stocks tumbling in the mean time.
It seems clear that trying to “fool” the legitimate press through social media is a strategy loaded with opportunities to backfire.
This week marks the official beginning of the summer movie season, with “Iron Man 3″ kicking things off. If you’re driving by your local cinema on Thursday night, don’t be surprised if you see lines around the corner as hardcore geeks strive to be the first to catch a midnight screening.
The Hollywood press is already pontificating about how much the sequel will earn at the box office this weekend, even guessing if records could be broken. But here’ s the thing: in most of the rest of the world, “IM3″ has already been out for a week. According to one source, it’s already tallied nearly $200 million in theater receipts, even before the Americans get a chance to see it.
Once upon time not so long ago, it was unheard of for a Hollywood movie to open anywhere other than America first. Now, as economic forces have shifted, the international film market has outpaced the native one. Whereas American films once did the bulk of their business here, now it’s not at all uncommon for a movie to do just so-so here — see “Life of Pi” — while cleaning up globally.
And other industries are seeing the same thing, too. More and more, companies have to think globally when it comes to launching a product or service. Think of Android-based smartphones, which vie with iPhones for market share in the U.S., but on an international scale they far outpace their Apple counterpart, accounting for 69% of sales.
If you’re running a small local business, you may not think you need to worry about the overseas market. But in the course of my two years here at Coles Marketing Communications, I’ve encountered any number of entrepreneurs who thought they’d never travel further than a gas tank to do business, and ended up finding lucrative opportunities in Europe, South America, Asia and elsewhere.
With about 310 million people, America is one of the most populous nations. But we still account for only about 4.5% of the global population. Any business that insists on catering to only people in the U.S. is ignoring more than 95% of their potential customers.
#whatisahashtag? They are everywhere and are an essential element to the Twitter experience!
If you haven’t already found a way to connect people through hashtags by directing them back to your website where you can control the conversation, then it’s only a matter of time.
Best to get a-Tweetin’ sooner than later. That’s just one of the articles in our most recent BuzzWise newsletter!
Plus, how do you keep your digital sanity in a world where people may not get back to you soon … or even at all? We’ll give you an inside look.
And it’s time to get your computer and social media channels spiffy in a jiffy! Get some spring cleaning tips to clean out the clutter.
U.S. Wine Consumption Outpaces Both France and Italy; Millenials Drive Growth
For the first time in 19 years, U.S. wine consumption per capita is outpacing France and Italy, as reported by Vinexpo. Currently, Americans account for a whopping 13 percent of total global wine consumption. The largest growing demographic of wine drinkers are Millienials, and their top reasons for wine purchase are varieties of wine by the glass and the ability to pair it with food. Additionally, according to Wine Market Council research, core wine drinkers want and expect choice.
However, despite the growing demand for wine and wine variety, the average list of wines by the glass only offers 25 selections, according to the Napa Technology 2012 Wines By The Glass Survey. This limits the variety of wine available to consumers.
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, a leader in the fine dining industry, is bucking their competitors and creatively offering its Guests 100 wines by the glass. Called the Fleming’s 100®, it is available at all 65 locations nationwide.
“It’s clear that choice and selection in most restaurants are limited compared to the growing wine demand. At Fleming’s, we are not just meeting demand – we’re exceeding it in an innovative way,” said Maeve Pesquera, National Director of Wine for Fleming’s. “We’re the only restaurant company nationwide to offer such an extensive selection of wines by the glass.”
The Fleming’s 100® takes a year to create and offers exactly what restaurant Guests are clamoring for: variety. The comprehensive wine list is divided by varietals, including traditional offerings like Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and emerging trend-setters like sweet wines, interesting white varietals, Rieslings, Moscato and Sauvignon Blancs. There are more than 30 wines on the list priced at $10 dollars or less.
“We’re known for our impeccable steaks and award-winning hospitality, but with current trends and increasing demand, we’re highlighting wine and giving our guests what they want,” said Pesquera.
Wines from the Fleming’s 100® can be enjoyed several ways: by the glass, as part of a flight, with a Big Pour or by the bottle. Wine flights are served on the Fleming’s Wine Vine. Guests can select three of the Fleming’s 100® to create their flight, and each selection is served in two-ounce pours and priced at one-third of the regular menu price. The Fleming’s Big Pour allows guests to savor a glass and a half of any Fleming’s 100® wine. All wines on the list are also available by the bottle.
For more information on the Fleming’s 100® or to make reservations, please visit www.flemingssteakhouse.com.
About Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar
The nationally acclaimed Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar offers the best in steakhouse dining – Prime meats and chops, fresh fish and poultry, generous salads and side orders—with a unique wine list known as the Fleming’s 100®, which features over 100 wines served by the glass. Fleming’s was launched in Newport Beach, California in 1998 by successful restaurant industry veterans Paul Fleming and Bill Allen. Today there are 65 restaurants nationwide. Fleming’s is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including Wine Spectator Magazine’s Award of Excellence.
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Coles Marketing Communications is proud to be a sponsor of the 2013 Discovery Ball benefitting the American Cancer Society (ACS) . In 2012, the gala event in Indianapolis raised over $315,000 in the fight against cancer. This year, the event will help celebrate ACS’s 100th year. For more information on how you can volunteer or donate to the event, click here: www.indydiscoveryball.org