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Thanks X.

As a PR professional having a journalist as a girlfriend isn’t always an advantage. It has never helped me pitch a story one time to be honest. Whenever I talk about one my clients it seems my girlfriend is more critical towards the subject then any other journalist I talk to.

Some time ago we both had a day of, and R. received a phone call. Journalists should always be standby so she picks up her phone:

- “Hi this is R. speaking.”
- “Hi this is X from PR agency Y. I have send you a copy of our exciting press release about luxury cruises, you might have seen it?”
- “Well, I don’t remember seeing it but when did you send it over? I'm not working this week.”
- “Oh, I have send it over to you this morning!”
- “Ok, I haven’t been able to see it yet because ...
- “Maybe you could check your e-mail now and see if you have received it?”
- “That’s a bit difficult because I don’t have access to my e-mail now. When is your event planned exactly?”
- “In about one month.”
- “I see, usually we don’t decide what events we will cover until the …” (X interrupts her)
- “I understand but it’s really interesting!”
- “As I said before, I have a week of at the moment and don’t have acccess” (X interrupts her again)
- “Ok, please check it when you get back and don’t hesitate to contact me should you have any questions!”
- …

X has hanged up and R. turns to me:”God I hate you pushy PR people sometimes!”

Could you believe it?


A lesson from Exxon Mobil on Twitter

Following the brand jacking case of Exxon Mobil on Twitter, we have conducted a small research to see what's happening on Twitter for the 45 most important Dutch and Belgian listed companies. On one hand not a lot is happening by the companies themselves, but on the other hand there are some things to worry about from a communications point of view.

Out of the 45 companies researched, 2 companies are using Twitter in a way that can be linked to them. These are Tom Tom and Randstad.

27 out of 45 brand names have been registered as Twitter accounts, but 25 accounts have unclear ownership (examples: ING, AgfaGevaert, Heineken, KPN, Dexia).

18 out of the 45 brand names have not yet been registered on Twitter.

Should companies now jump on Twitter and get (back) ownership of their accounts? Well, it doesn't only depend on the question if they want to start using Twitter to communicate. As we have seen with Exxon Mobil, it can get quite confusing when someone else starts broadcasting Tweets using a company name. Followers might get the impression this is official communication from the company, when in fact it is not. Not even considering any reputational damage and potential influence on stock rates this might have by spreading rumours... After all, as we have seen in a previous post on this blog, social media (including Twitter) are gaining SEC acceptance as a way to communicate and make information public.

So if your company has not registered an account on Twitter yet, this is the time. Registration is easy and takes only a few minutes. Now is also a good time to start monitoring the conversation about your company on Twitter. Just search for your company name and subscribe to the corresponding RSS feed in your feed reader.

More info on Twitter for those unfamiliair with it.

Press release on the research: Dutch, French

We're interested to find out your feedback in the comments!