Thursday, July 16, 2009

Entertainment Publicists Speak Out on Social Media Measurement How PR Pros Can Brand and Buzz on Twitter, Facebook and Blogs

Entertainment Publicists Professional Society Mixer

EPPS Summer Mixer Cools Off At
Poolside in Hollywood

By George S. McQuade

When you hear 90-year Entertainment Publicists Julian Myers in Hollywood talk about the importance new media, it makes you feel happy you are headed in the right direction or if you’re not, what you are missing. Myers was amongst several hundred Entertainment Publicists Professional Society (EPPS) members attending a Summer Mixer at the Skybar, Mondrian Hotel, West Hollywood, CA this week (7-16-09).

Season A. Skuro, PR, TECHNICOLOR
with Julian Myers

“Well, I enjoyed the Old Testament very much, and it’s nice new reading,” said Julian Myers, Myers PR, who used to wake up Actress Marilyn Monroe to go to celebrity events in Hollywood after partying all night. “I’ve been around for awhile, but after 2,000 years, I think I know new media quite well and I look forward to reading about more new media I heard about the other day- the Gettysburg Address.”
Myers admitted that he and other Hollywood publicists have lagged behind in new media, but like journalists who cover his clients, he said “the basic concepts of publicity are always the same. Be honest, and think of new ways to make first yourself, second your client famous.”
Myers also said, “It’s exciting to quickly get an online buzz, but the big question is how do you measure it? What are you supporters saying about your or opposition in the blogosphere?”

Glen Anderson with Skybar
Waitress Clare Porter
 “New media is definitely helping, but the only problem with new media,” said independent publicists Glenn Anderson, “it takes so much time to keep up and keep all of those Linked-In, MySpace, Facebook and Twitter sites up to day. You spend more time tweeting and Facebooking than time needed for your clients.”

“New media definitely has it’s time and place,” said Tiffany Victoria Bradshaw, Marketing Consultant. “A lot of people still don’t quite understand it the way they should. They often think it takes the place of traditional marketing Efforts.
I feel, because I’m kind of old school in marketing, not because I am old, but I still appreciate traditional marketing. Let’s make sure we have identified your target market, make sure you have a good 30 second networking pitch, and make sure you have a good sales presentation. All these still apply, market research, etc, regardless of new media, so you can not just skip over that,” said Bradsaw.

“I’m a little behind the times with the new media,” said PR Pro Ellen Giurleo. “I’ve been resisting getting on Facebook, because it will take all this time, but all the people I’ve talk to tell me and I know I have to do it, or at least get a business page up. Probably not a personal page though,” she said.
“Oddly enough, I was spending a lot of time on Twitter today learning how to do it,” said TV Guide’s Chad Sandhas. “I’m only 34 and I feel like I am catching up so new media I think is scary for all of us.”
“I have to agree with Chad,” said Eileen Salmas, “I don’t Twitter, I don’t text, and I’ navigating around Facebook and Linked-In. I’m trying to figure out how to use it for the company, but that’s not really my job. It’s a little bit daunting.”
Motion Picture & TV Fund Stirs Controversy
The EPPS mixer was sponsored by the International Cinematographers Union ICG Local 600 and on behalf of Motion Picture and TV Fund (MPTF), which is scheduled to close its hospital and end its acute long term care unit due “a $10 million loss,” at the end of 2009.

Ken Scherer, director, MPTF 
“We are an 89 year old charity in Hollywood, created by Hollywood for Hollywood and it takes care of people who have fallen on hard times,” said Ken Scherer, director, MPTF. “Everyone thinks that everyone in Hollywood makes $20 million dollars, which is simply not true, and so we provide financial assistance, medical care and all kinds of support including retirement care.”

In his speech to EPPS members he said, “We didn’t do a very good job in PR,” and later told this writer, “We have some people onboard doing new media and everything.” Additionally, Scherer said he “got involved while successfully starving as a TV producer, and was called to run the foundation, which raises the money for the MPTF, I was happy to take the job.”

Even Jeffery Katzenberg, principal partner of DreamWorks L.L.C. and Co-founder, DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. came out to help brand and promote the nonprofit.

Longtime Publicist Julian Myers was upset that Katzenberg failed to take questions after talking about the Moton Picture & TV Fund organization.
Jeffery Katzenberg, principal partner
 of DreamWorks L.L.C. and Co-founder
DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc.
Myers told this writer he had a lot of questions and said, “There is no reason to abandon the residents of the Motion Picture Country homed. NONE! The hundreds of us who, love our industry will back annual shows at the Coliseum (100,000 capacity), where our wonderful caring stars will perform to keep the dreams of us who have worked all our lives in Hollywood alive. Yes, Barbara Streisand, Dick Van Dyke, Julie Andrews, Tony Bennett, great comics and new stars will gladly appear.”

Julian Myers with ICG Rep.
Myers also noted that he was, “contributing to this fund before Mr. Katzenberg was born (1950) literally, and I know how it is in hearts of countless colleagues. 
There are hundreds of thousands of people, men and women who have worked in Hollywood all of their lives and had the dream that if necessary ‘Hollywood would take care of its own’,” said Myers. Myers also won the door prize of the 2009 O’Dwyer Director of PR firms.

If you want to donate or help out the Motion Picture and TV Fund 818-876-1900 or visit:

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