How to Win Friends and Influence Bloggers


Earlier this month, the Daily Beast broke the news that Facebook had hired a powerhouse PR agency to plant negative stories about Google in the press. The agency, Burson-Marstellar, deployed two of its big guns for the campaign: Former CNBC tech reporter Jim Goldman and former Hotline executive editor John Mercurio. In one e-mail, Mercurio offered to help write and place an op-ed if the recipient, blogger Chris Soghoian, would lend his name to it. The savvy Soghoian asked who was bankrolling the campaign, and when Mercurio declined to say, Soghoian made the e-mails public.

What makes this incident interesting is that on one hand, Mercurio did many things right. He used a descriptive subject line: “Op-Ed Opportunity: Google Quietly Launches Sweeping Violation of User Privacy.” His first sentence succinctly and directly summarized the ask. He provided a list of talking points, each supported by a link to an independent sources. And his offer was tantalizing: Who in Washington wouldn’t want a byline in the Washington Post?

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How to Make Your News Clips Delicious


Last month, TechCrunch reported that the popular bookmarking site, Delicious, is trapped in “purgatory”: Owner Yahoo wants to sell the property, but in a way that protects Yahoo’s proprietary’s technology that Delicious shares with the rest of the purple family. Yet whatever its fate, Delicious continues to offer a service that’s not only superior to the competition but that also should be part of every digital PR toolkit. Here’s why.

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