Why Your Brand Needs to Come Clean with a New Generation of Buyers

By Michael Shepherd / August 13, 2020 /

One of the things that makes us better problem solvers is the diversity of thought and perspectives that we bring to a challenge. In this edition of Brand Matters, we hear from Gen Z professional Cait McGinnis, as she weighs in on a once beloved brand whose behavior doesn’t pass the smell test.   Reputation…

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Will Marketers Pass the COVID-19 Test?

By Michael Shepherd / July 16, 2020 /

Slash and burn is well underway in corporate marketing departments worldwide, as CMOs clear out old growth initiatives and replace them with makeshift fire lines in response to COVID-19. With few exceptions – sectors like e-commerce, telecoms, and utilities among them – the budget ax is falling and nobody seems quite sure when the clear…

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Packing Your Brand Parachute

By Michael Shepherd / May 20, 2020 /

Now that all but the most contrarian or delusional have resigned themselves to the fact that business in 2020 looks nothing like it did in 2019, the question looms: What are you planning to do to survive the fall?  If your answer is something along the lines of cutting back and riding things out, I…

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Why the Media Just Isn’t That Into You

By Michael Shepherd / May 6, 2020 /

Good press. Everybody in this post COVID-19 world wants it, from the president of the United States to CEOs, as well as nonprofit and government agency leaders. Even when the media coverage is bad, the exposure is good. You matter. You’re relevant. You’re trending.  So, why are so many brands struggling to find PR love…

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Finding Your Way Through Today’s Newspaper Jungle

By Michael Shepherd / February 28, 2020 /

Perhaps lost amid the news that rolled across your electronic and office desktop last week was the announcement that 163-year-old family owned McClatchy Co., the second largest newspaper group in the United States, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.  From the Sacramento Bee to the Miami Herald, the Charlotte Observerto the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, McClatchy…

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How the Multiplier Effect Works in PR

By Michael Shepherd / February 14, 2020 /

One of the things I enjoy most about my job is finding out how our communications create customer value. At Shepherd we measure everything – or, at least we try to, and thanks to the wonders of Boolean search technology and digital cookies, we are more effective than ever in how we capture those data points.

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Brand Value: Buy It or Earn It?

By Michael Shepherd / January 22, 2020 /

One of the most memorable advertising taglines ever delivered came nearly 40 years ago, when respected actor John Houseman, pitchman for a Wall Street investment firm, looked into the camera and told us, “They make money the old-fashioned way: They earn it.” There may never have been a more credible messenger or message. When something…

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The Question That Makes Every Communicator Squirm

By Michael Shepherd / December 18, 2019 /

You’ve pulled your web analytics, downloaded social media dashboards, and generated detailed reports showing open, click-through, and conversion rates from your last campaign. Well done, data pro. So, in preparation for your meeting with the C-Suite, just one more question: How did you add value? In other words, can you explain the financial contributions your earned…

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Hoops and the High Cost of Freedom

By Michael Shepherd / November 13, 2019 /

Turns out freedom really isn’t free. Professional basketball players and shoe companies who lost millions of dollars in China following a social media post (since deleted) from a National Basketball Association executive sympathizing with government protestors in Hong Kong are understanding just how costly it can be. While many might not be inclined to feel…

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Is Your Brand Aging Beautifully or Badly?

By Michael Shepherd / October 17, 2019 /

The problem with being old is that you wake up one day and have no idea how you got there. Oh sure, there are a few signs along the way, but we pay about as much attention to those as we do to seeing cones suddenly appear on a freeway. What starts as a one-lane…

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