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“I have been hugely impressed by Melissa. She has a wealth of experience and contacts and this, together with her proactive approach, enables her to achieve first class results.” Jonathan Hand, Barrister, Outer Temple Chambers

Tommy Hill British Superbike Champion opens the offices of Fletchers, leading bike injury solicitors firm

 

 We’re only one month into 2015 and already you’re probably tired of hearing people exc

2015 social media marketing predictions

January 19th, 2015 | Posted by Melissa in Blog - (Comments Off)

 

 

2015 is upon us and that means it’s time to look at the year ahead and try to get some idea of what trends and strategies might be the best to invest in for those looking to enhance social media marketing over the next 12 months. If your social media strategy needs a bit of an overhaul then here are some of the biggest social media marketing predictions for 2015 to bear in mind.

 

1. Too much information. By 2020, the amount of information that will be online will have increased by 600% and so one of the biggest hurdles we’re likely to start seeing this year is how to fight through all that info to get to the important bits. This makes one of the biggest immediate marketing challenges cutting through all the increasing volume of information that everyone else is putting out there and gaining the attention of your client base. This is going to mean contending with filters used by consumers to make sure they’re not overwhelmed by information and possibly moving away from platforms like Facebook, which simply have too much on them.

 

2. Google+. There is a huge division in opinion over what will happen to Google+ this year. Some believe that, as a result of the Google Local Search results and the star rating system, Google+ is likely to go stratospheric in 2015. Others point out that it has no unique value not already brought to the table by Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. Either way it’s a platform to keep an eye on, either to develop or to drop.

 

3. Social media needs a human touch. Many brands have historically simply used their social media presence as a kind of loudspeaker, broadcasting views, publicising content and generally shouting loudly about achievements, developments and news at any opportunity. This isn’t going to work in 2015 as social media now requires humanising – it needs to be an interactive process that sees meaningful connections established and conversations had with clients and consumers rather than at them. Interactive is going to be the key word for effective social media over the next 12 months.

 

4. Relationship building and experience enablement become key. In law, client relationships have always been at the heart of a strong business but from this year the nature of those relationships is going to change dramatically. Customer service is going to be at the heart of social media experience – and the legal industry – like never before so it’s going to become crucial to employ people who not only understand this but can practically do it too. More and more, clients are going to turn to social media to register complaints, to seek advice or to make judgments about firms in terms of both the rate at which they keep up with client technology expectations and how accessible they are via platforms like Twitter.

 

5. Video is king. Experts all over the globe are predicting that in 2015 video is going to become the content of choice. However, the way it is delivered to consumers is likely to change, as YouTube will be replaced by other social media platforms hosting video internally instead.

New Year reputation/PR resolutions for the legal sector

January 14th, 2015 | Posted by Melissa in Blog - (Comments Off)

 

“Have you made resolutions this year?” This question seems to have been a part of just about every conversation between returning office workers since the start of the month and is often met by enthusiastically reciting a list of life improvements – or a blank look. However, rather than giving up booze for January, resolving to go to the gym more or taking up knitting, why not make some solid PR resolutions instead – your reputation management in 2015 will thank you for it.

 

1. Know your audience. Like never before this is the time to really get to know your audience, to live and breathe the desires and needs of your clients and to unleash all your creativity and intuition when it comes to reaching them. An increase in competition in the sector, as well as new trends for organic and inbound marketing mean that you can’t just throw PR at the wall and hope it sticks any more.

 

2. Do more. For most of us the lesson has now been learned that quality outshines quantity every time when it comes to marketing. However, that doesn’t mean that you should spend 2015 making do with a tweet a week and the odd blog. Resolve to make this the year that you tweet/post/Vine and blog more, perhaps even join a new platform – you’ll find the interest that you generate and the conversations that you start will deliver a great big kick to your online profile.

 

3. Look out for the next big thing. You know how digital marketing and social media works by now – those who can create or spot a trend are those who win the most exposure. Don’t sit back and wait to see how you could benefit from trending topics, actively get out there and find ways to give your brand the kind of profile it needs using fast moving social media activity as the spring board. You might even want to consider creating your own viral around a key 2015 event (here are a few to look out for: general election, royal baby, Rugby World Cup, the new Star Wars movie).

 

4. Focus on strategy. Review the strategies that you’ve had in place in the past and identify elements that haven’t been successful but that are still filtering through into your current work practices. Be ruthless when it comes to binning old ideas that just don’t produce results and instead create a strategy that incorporates cutting edge ideas, in depth audience knowledge and has defined targets and goals for the year ahead.

 

5. Celebrate your successes. All too often we fail to make the most of successes and achievements, whether that’s new work won, awards received or something extra curricular, such as employees taking part in pro bono or fundraising. 2015 is the year for humanising your business voice and there is no better way to do this than with smiling faces and congratulations all round. Resolve to give your brand a human face in 2015.

 

6. Don’t ignore your website. It doesn’t matter how good your PR strategy is, if you have a non-responsive, boring website then you’re simply wasting all that effort. We all now acknowledge that the website is often the first port of call for a potential client, or at least a resource for researching a potential new relationship, so make yours part of your PR strategy and ensure that it works.

Why Play- Doh and sex toys shouldn’t mix

January 6th, 2015 | Posted by Melissa in Blog - (Comments Off)

 

January is a bit of a grey month and so it’s always nice to come across a good old PR fail in order to inject a bit of humour into this rather flat time of year. This latest story comes courtesy of Play Doh, perhaps one of the most common brands of household toys in the world. Most of us had Play Doh in our lives at some point growing up – but perhaps not like this latest release from the brand.

 

As the dust settled after Christmas and all the Play Doh presents had been unwrapped and were being played with, a number of rather upset parents began taking to social media in order to express concerns that the innocent toys they had purchased for their kids as part of Santa’s haul had taken on a rather more sinister shape once out of the box. Some parents had found themselves embarrassed by relatives who accused them of allowing their children to play with a sex toy because, unfortunately, the latest Play Doh release bore more than a slight resemblance to a dildo.

 

In fact, the penis shaped design is a two-piece syringe-like toy that is intended to be used for cake decorating. The problem is that Play Doh unfortunately didn’t have the foresight not to make it pink or to remove the corkscrew style ridges around the outside, which caused many to compare it to a famous brand of vibrator. The fact that the toy has a hole in the top through which the Play Doh is squeezed has simply added insult to injury for many.

 

Looking at the toy, it’s hard to believe that someone somewhere didn’t spot the potential for disaster. However, this sort of thing has happened in the past and will most likely happen again as even the biggest international brands can fall foul of a collective dirty mind. When Hasbro – the manufacturer of Play Doh – began receiving complaints via its Facebook page the smart company began responding immediately, demonstrating the advantages of using social media for customer service, including the chance to respond quickly and apologise publicly.

 

As the furore over the toys has grown online, the attention it has generated has also allowed the company to get its own response out there quickly and now all reports of the incident, as well as the places in which it is mentioned online, are accompanied by an acknowledgement of the problem and a statement that Hasbro is “in the process of updating all future Play-Doh products with a different tool.” The company has also been able to offer offended customers a replacement in order to head off further displeasure. As a result, what could have blown up into a global scandal with a large number of irritated customers is now simply laughed off as an unfortunate mistake with the brand suffering no permanent damage.

 

While this incident hilariously illustrates how sometimes big brands can’t see the wood for the trees with their own products, it also serves to demonstrate just how important it is to embrace the new horizons of customer service by social media in 2015.

Dry January – toxic digital marketing habits to give up this month

January 5th, 2015 | Posted by Melissa in Blog - (Comments Off)

January is upon us once again and for many of us that means a fairly savage detox after all the champagne of New Year’s Eve and the over indulgence of the Christmas period – the arrival of Dry January. Whether or not you’re taking part in the annual denial of booze this year, it’s worth taking a look at other areas where it might also be worth having a detox. If you’ve fallen into bad digital marketing habits and negative online behaviours then why not try going cold turkey on a few of the worst. Here are some suggestions.

 

1. Don’t ignore anyone. If you have an online or social media presence and you’re not responding to people who are trying to make contact with you then make this one of your bad behaviours to do away with this January. You will do far more damage to your brand and reputation by having an unresponsive Twitter account or not replying to enquiry emails than not having an online presence at all so get on the case and start being responsive.

 

2. Stop blindly rushing forward. Ok so it’s fair to say that the arrival of digital marketing and social media – and the pace at which all of it progresses and changes – is probably rather difficult to keep up with. However, that’s no excuse for blindly throwing effort into various areas and hoping that something useful emerges. In order to get into good digital marketing habits you need to start with a strategy – what are your intentions for your online content/statuses/publishing and how are you going to get there?

 

3. Don’t forget to track your progress. In order to successfully make the best use of all the latest digital marketing techniques you need to make sure that you understand the impact that each of them is having on your business. Define the ways in which you’re going to measure success and regularly monitor your progress so that you have a good idea of what works and what you don’t need to touch again with a barge pole.

 

4. Stop fibbing. In an industry like law you would expect precisely no one to be telling porky pies but unfortunately the competitive nature of marketing these days leads many of us to be a little economical with the truth. This is increasingly harder to get away with thanks to the access the general public has to information so don’t inflate your achievements and successes, report them honestly and with good intentions. If you don’t have enough to show for the past 12 months then set some clear goals and targets and generate something to crow about – very few people will fall for puff pieces these days, it simply comes across as disingenuous.

 

5. Don’t be insular. Law is an industry that has begun to pick up the digital marketing baton and run with it but it is by no means the sector that is right at the cutting edge. Don’t be afraid to look outside what your immediate peers are doing for inspiration – who is leading the way in social media profile, where are the best online efficiencies coming from and where is digital marketing getting the best results?

 

If you want advice on your digital strategy please drop us a line camila.reed@mdcomms.co.uk or 020 7438 1575