Rob Coleman

Social Media’s Super Tuesday Predictions

In Election, Social Media on March 5, 2012 at 4:58 pm

Can social media predict an election? Super Tuesday is tomorrow, and the folks at SocialMatica.com are examining this possibility.

The notion being tested here is that by measuring the influence of each Republican candidate in the social media realm, we can identify the winner. In short, Buzz=Votes. It will be interesting to see whether this is indeed any type of predictor, or whether it offers better accuracy than the traditional polling.

Are people more likely to discuss a candidate on social media if they intend to vote for the candidate? Probably so, but can that lead us to forecast an election? Color me skeptical, especially given that Rick Santorum isn’t predicted to finish in the top two in any state on Super Tuesday. That flies in the face of all the polls. But regardless, as a case study in social media, I’ll enjoy seeing the actual results.

Here are the Super Tuesday predictions from SocialMatica and Real Clear Politics, which offers the results of many traditional polls:

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Crisis Mode

In Crisis Communications on February 9, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Much has been written about the PR maneuverings in the Planned Parenthood vs. Susan G. Komen kerfuffle. There are some great lessons to be learned by communications professionals, as we review the winner and loser in this story. (Need the background on this story? Read it here.)

From the outset, the PR team at Planned Parenthood drove this story, both through social channels and traditional print and broadcast networks. They created the narrative, while the Susan G. Komen Foundation apparently hoped it would go away quietly. As a result, the talking heads and opinion leaders had no shortage of Planned Parenthood spokespeople at their disposal for interviews. The Komen people issued a statement.

Komen was caught flat-footed, while the nimble PR professionals at Planned Parenthood were out in full force. The question is how Komen didn’t see this coming? Anyone taking a stand in the abortion debate is engaging in the most divisive issue of the past two generations. And to most of America, Planned Parenthood means just one thing….abortion clinics. Right or wrong, this is the perception, so any de-funding of Planned Parenthood is sure to fire up the abortion debate.

So, how can we learn from this and apply it to our companies?

(Arguably) The Best Communications Websites

In Blogs, Corporate Communications on January 26, 2012 at 9:25 am

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Which websites do I find most useful? Glad I asked.

I’ve created a list of websites that have benefited me and should help every corporate communicator. Before I get to it, here is the criteria on which my list is based:

1)      Original Content: Independent research and unique stories that are hard to find anywhere else.

2)      Case Studies: Sites that share real-world examples of success and failure are of particular interest. When you explain how something works and couple that with case studies that drive the point home, the lesson truly resonates.

3)      Broad Topics: Most of us communicators need to know about every platform – digital and print, social and traditional, visual and verbal.

4)      Depth of a Single Topic: Some websites provide such thorough social media content, it’s not a problem if they ignore everything else.

5)      Established Leader: Tried and proven. Some sites have been around for a long time and have developed a loyal following – for good reason.

With that criteria established, here are the websites on my must-read list: