I attended the Mumbrella 360 conference in Sydney last week which was insightful, entertaining and very engaging. As well as meeting some really great people, I learnt a lot about the media landscape and witnessed some of the best digital projects taking place in Australia. Before I bring you a summary on the two day event I thought I would share more of an amusing post with you.  I’m not going to lie, I still love a goody bag and I’m the first to get my hands on any freebies that are floating around.


1. Here is a strange gift from MediaMath. There is probably a simple explanation as to what this actually does, but all I can think about is the episode in the comedy Black Books. Fran the owner of the shop next door, enlists the help of Bernard and his customers to find out exactly what an object from her shop is. Episode available here if you haven’t seen it already.

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2. Nutella is a nutty tasty treat that is popular amongst many and I for one, can never refuse it. Especially when it comes in these amazing tiny jars! The guys at Social Soup had plenty left so I did the cheeky thing and took two.


3. A handy drinks bottle gets my vote. Easy to carry and perfect for long days in the office as a water bottle. Thanks to Media Super for this one.

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4. This was the most ridiculous gift I found and it was available on the chairs just before the session on ‘ The Cult of Overwork’ started. They actually created a lot of conversation in the room and the gentleman next to me said with slight sarcasm, he would take them home as a present for his wife. I bet she was delighted!


5. This mini guide to Sydney is very useful and I was glad to find it at the bottom of the goody bag.  Anyone new to Sydney would appreciate the guide.

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6. Postcards are usually something you can easily pick up in bars, shops, museums, art gallerys and most post offices. However when they are hand picked and offer an interactive option via an app, they are quite cool.

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7. This is  my favourite freebie but I did actually have to ask nicely for this one. Ian Elliot actually handed the book to me after his speech and told me to enjoy it. Thanks Ian, maybe one day I can put some of the useful tips into practice.

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If you have picked up any useful or strange gifts at a conference before, please feel free to share them with me below.

If you are working in consumer/lifestyle PR, then you will probably be familiar with the process of gifting a celebrity or a very influential person with a high popularity score.

Gifting can be a great PR technique if done correctly and each party sticks to their plan. When a celebrity with 2.5 million followers on twitter is spotted wearing, carrying or pushing one of your products on a well-known news site such as the Daily Mail, expect a positive response. However things don’t always run smoothly and there can be complications with this activity. I have personally experienced situations where celebrities (without naming and shaming) have taken products for free and have either gone against the whole agreement or bent the rules to their advantage.

Here are a few things to think about before gifting:

If a celebrity has an agent and you are going via them, ensure you check that the ‘gifting process’ includes social media promotion like tweets and Facebook links. A lot of celebrities are charging for this service as it is now seen as ‘added endorsement for the brand.’

When sending clothing, accessories or shoes, make sure you check the sizing is correct and that is definitely a suitable match for the targeted receiver. There is always a risk that they may dislike the product or it is a bad fit.

If you are sending products out ‘In House’ then do make sure they are packaged nicely and a personalised messages is placed on a compliment card within the parcel. First impressions count and stick in the mind.

Be aware that if any images appear in the press and you wish to re use them, you will need to pay copyright fees and seek permission from the photographer directly. If images are picked up by magazines and newspapers from your blog or twitter feed, additional charges could apply to them individually.

Never start a twitter war with the celebrity you have gifted. This can look very unprofessional and will only turn them against you, resulting in negative vibes and more than likely, sour comments about your brand.

Kate Middleton is the most talked about female in the press and has become a huge, classic style icon. Many young females are aspiring to look like the Duchess of Cambridge and are searching for key items that have been showcased in newspapers and magazines. If you are an online retailer looking to optimise your website for brand names, it might be worth studying the trends and naming some of your products to coincide. The table below shows search results for Kate Middleton’s shoes after being spotted in a stunning collection during the Royal wedding and whilst on the Duchess’s travels around Canada.

When writing content for a fashion blog or a shoe retailer, make sure you get some of these popular key words into your content or start your title of the post with’As seen on Kate Middleton’. They are more likely to become recognised and crawled by our friends, ‘the Google bots’.

The proof is in the pudding- Check your blog posts before publishing

I have been reading the comments from a recent post on www.quora.com, titled ‘Is it acceptable to have typos in your blog posts? Some of the responses to this are as follows, I don’t think its “acceptable”, but it is inevitable.I’m a pretty prolific writer, and quite a grammar nazi, and I make little typos all the time. Without a second person to proof-read, it’s very hard to catch every typo.It always annoys me when one slips into my blog though.

How can we prevent this?

  • One you have written your blog post and filled it with creative inspiration, print it out and read through it thoroughly. (You don’t always spot mistakes on a computer screen)
  • Give the piece of copy to a friend or colleague to proof check and ask them to feedback to you. You could also put it through Copyblogger – http://www.copyblogger.com/ to check for duplicated content.
  • Before copying and pasting the content into word press make sure you paste it on notepad first before transferring. This will delete any unwanted formatting and will allow word press to display the text clearly without and odd symbols. Read More
Dragon Dictation is an easy-to-use voice recognition application powered by Dragon®
This nifty little application allows you to easily speak into it and instantly see your text or email messages. It is much faster than typing out a long winded message or e mail.
You can train it to recognise your voice so that it avoids making silly mistakes. Use it to create a blog post and give your fingers a rest. It is also perfect for wording a complicated email when out of the office or during a long commute.
Other uses,
  • You could use the app at a conference instead of scribbling notes.
  • Press days- Interviewing
Make sure you check over the text for grammar and punctuation errors. You may also wish to add in capitalisation of letters.
I rewrote the first paragraph of this blog post below using the Dragon Dictation app.
Dragon dictation is an easy to use voice recognition application powered by Dragon. This nifty little application allows you to easily speak and instantly see your text or e-mail messages in fact it’s up to 5 times faster than typing on the keyboard
My first attempt at using this little device has resulted in a near enough word for word paragraph, except for the odd one, highlighted in red. It also doesn’t allow spaces, full stops or capitalisation – which would all need to be put in manually.
Still quite a handy addition to the  PR toolbox I would say!!

11 Factors to Consider when Placing Content on Websites/Blogs

Everyone in the PR world are learning that optimising press releases and blog posts for search engine purposes is becoming a big part of their online strategy. We are told to make sure we include a link within the copy whenever it is published but what makes these links strong and worthy?

When looking at a website to place content on it is wise to check the following.

  1. Are the links within content do-follow? check for the tag attribute rel=”nofollow” on links within the content. You can download a free SEO book.com toolbar that will also help you identify these. Read More