Notes from Reading The New Rules of Marketing & PR – David Meerman Scott

Last updated on September 21st, 2023.

Link to buy: Amazon

Published / Read: 2022 / Jan + Feb 2023
Intro: The New Rules of Marketing & PR” by David Meerman Scott is a book that challenges traditional marketing and public relations strategies. Meerman argues that the internet and social media have fundamentally changed the way that companies should be promoting themselves and their products.
Would I read it again? No. For my taste, David shares too many anecdotes that are not supported by data. I prefer a more evidence-based approach when learning new concepts of Marketing.

The below notes are not a summary of the book. They are highlighted sentences and paragraphs. Ideas that surprise or resonate with me.

  • Comparing “old” and “new” way of marketing: (Push vs Pull): “When people come to you online, they are not looking for TV commercials.” The “old” way of marketing interrupted people e.g. by sending a tv commercial. Whereas the content-driven (“new” way as Meermann says) way focuses on delivering useful content at just the precise moment a buyer needs it.
  • Tone of voice: Priorly PR professionals were supposed to use jargon because their media releases targeted journalists who understood jargon. Whereas in the “new” way, jargon and colloquialism hould be avoided as you are talking to the end customer. Be descriptive. Many creators use “flexible, scalable, groundbreaking, industry-standard, cutting-edge, market-leading, well-positioned”
  • Social Media reporting at American Airlines happens by a weekly scorecard sent to top management. The scorecard includes the number of mentions, response time, top stories of the week, and top proactive posts
  • Be helpful: “Nowadays, people solve problems by turning to the web.” “Give more than you get.” “What problems can you help solve for your buyers?” “When you focus on buyers’ problems as you create content, you’ll often write about something that doesn’t relate to what your organization actually does.” The goal is that they learn something from the content. The consumer feels grateful and tends to pay you back the favor in some form. “You are what you publish.” Do not write about your company and your products. Content as a marketing asset should be designed to solve buyer problems or answer questions and to show that you and your organization are smart and worth doing business with.” “People like to do business with people they like. And they are eager to introduce their friends to one another. “
  • Thought Leadership: “[…] you need data to back up your recommendations.”
  • UX: “Create an online presence that people are eager to consume.” “Avoid […] dropdown menus that require mouse hovering and other gestures that are potentially difficult for people who struggle with fine motor movements”
  • Own your stuff: While Social Media is great to distribute, Meermann recommends publishing content on a site “that you own and control”. Social Media Networks may disappear. (Do you remember Clubhouse 😉 ?)
  • Expansion: “When you live in a country like Latvia, your home market is tiny, requiring you to sell your products and services internationally.”
  • What is newsjacking? “Newsjacking is inserting your ideas into a breaking news story by writing a real-time blog post or shooting a video to interest reporters and generate coverage.”
  • Goalsetting: “Think about the goals that most marketers have. They usually take the form of an epic to-do list.” “What matters is leading your site’s visitors and your constituent audiences to where they help you reach your real goals, such as building revenue, soliciting donations, and gaining new members.” “Prior, the ultimate goal of PR professionals was the press clip, which was proof that they had their work done. Whereas the “new” way focuses on lead generation.”
  • Types of lead: “In newer companies and those built around emerging technologies, this usually means generating new customers, but in mature businesses, the management team may need to be more focused on keeping the customers that they already have. Nonrpfoits have the goal of raising money; politicians, to get out the vote (for them); rock bands, to get people to buy CDs (?) or tickets to live shows.”
    Make it easy for the buyer to contact you. E.g. by adding “call me” or “contact me” CTAs.
  • Personas: “Marketers tell me that they don’t have time to build buyer personas, but these same people are wasting countless hours in meetings debating about whether the message is right”
  • Google Ads: “[Google Ads] is a classic example of a genuine marketing expense. You pay and you get something but when you stop paying it immediately goes away.” It refers as the “old” way of marketing, like the TV Ad. Opposed to the TV ad, Google Ads does not interrupt.
  • Social Media for personal branding: “Most people separate business and personal on social media, and I think that’s a mistake. A fun aspect of social media is getting to know a bit about the personal lives of those we do business with.” “Your profile should emphasize the skills you bring to your market niche and the value you add to your community.”

Corina Burri

Corina is a SEO Freelancer from Zürich. Since 2016 she's in SEO and has contributed to publications such as SEOFOMO, Tech SEO Tips, or iPullRank. When not grinding, she enjoys exploring Switzerland with her family.

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