Vlogging and the New DIY PR

December 4, 2007

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(image: Andy Plesser shooting footage for The New York Times corporate site)

I’ve been talking to people in the industry about the fight for marketing dollars recently between interactive agencies, PR firms, and other consultants. Where PR people succeed and fail–and this was the main theme of the Critical Issues Forum–is in their ability to tell compelling stories. My theory is the overall nut of marketing dollars will remain the same, while PR firms fight to keep what they have, or learn new methods and take a bigger chunk. Creating new media, specifically producing video for the web is going to be the nut the industry fights for.

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Photo: Andy Plesser interviewing Robert Scoble

Sadly, PRNewser’s series on Gawker’s Conquering All Media is coming to a close this week. Caught up in the melee of the FEMA scandal we neglected to write up another key response from an agency head to Choire Sicha’s thoughts on Michael’s restaurant.

Andy Plesser, founder of Plesser Holland, placed gossip items and feature stories on behalf of the restaurant in the 90s prior to transitioning away from lifestyle clients in 1999. To summarize his thoughts: go to lunch to gawk, go to breakfast to cut your deals.

Plesser understands both the need for some offline gawking as well as the new rules of the self-referential blogodome. His Beet.tv is a mostly serious, and well-trafficked (Technorati top 10,000) vlog covering the online video revolution. See him commenting on Beet.tv v. Scoble here, and a vlog-within-a-vlog on Kara Swisher’s AllThingsD. Vlogodome? Copyright pending.

Like other influencers featured on PRNewser, Plesser graciously denied his impact on his former client. Before getting to his comments, I disclose that I worked for his firm from 2000 to 2006:

Jason, you flatter me that I’m the “guru,” it’s Michael and his staff who have brilliantly created an enduring scene and brand by knowing “who is important” in building the electricity in the room. The other cool thing is that Michael is very loyal to customers who are seen as important, even it they are not in the spotlight or employed. There’s a lot of buzz in the room, but goodwill, which makes the scene so enduring.

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