Ketchum's Blog Launches

Back in July when I interviewed Adam Brown, the director of eKetchum, he noted that there would be a blog from Ketchum Personalized Media. And, no, it's not KetchumIdeas.

And, it has launched ... to no fanfare, to no announcements, to no datelines, and pretty much to no content.

Ketchum has taken heat for a few things, most recently it's participation / non-participation in Global PR Blog Week II. Some of the complaints are warranted, some are not, and, well, the fact is that Mark Rose should not have posted the private email conversation he had to a message board ... I think that's a violation of some Well type operational procedure.

And, I always go back and forth on Ketchum. I know a few people that work there that I respect, and then there are whole teams I think are detriments to their clients.

But, the blog just doesn't do it. It doesn't cut the mustard ... and no, it's not because it's a large agency blogging, but because, well, it's lame. The posts have no dates, so it's hard to see if anything is current. There's not much interaction going on. The posts just aren't that interesting.

The KPM team needs to take a step back and look at other large firm's blogs - either from the CEO or other employees. Take a look at Edelman's 6AM by Richard Edelman and Employee Engagement by Christopher Hannegan. Take a look at Tim Dyson's Technology PR. Take a look at Michael Kempner's MWW Straight Talk - but, unlike his recent post on SUN, note when you write on clients. Transparency is king in corporate blogs.

Good luck with the new blog. It can only improve.

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  1. Maybe I'm just stupid but the navigation leaves a lot to be desired too. There seems to be no main page so you have to click on each individual post to read more.

    As I recently commented at Phil Gomes' blog, I'm not a big fan of PR firms, who put up a semblance of a blog, which is treated as an afterthought and adds no value just so they can say they "Get It" to clients and prospects.

    Since Ketchum's blog is new I'll give them the benefit of the doubt....for now.

  2. As with any corporate venture, it's all about buy-in -- what level of buy-in do you have from the senior leadership? The differences in quality and relevance between this blog and Edelman's is pretty clear, and I think that's the difference.

  3. Oh, and Jeremy: Did you change the name of the blog to "POP! PR Jots"? I'll update my blogroll. (Where was your re-branding campaign?);)

  4. No rebranding campaign, I admit it. But, I will post about it tonight.

  5. Ketchum is a leader in the public relations industry. As a student, Ketchum is the firm that marks the pinnacle of a public relations career. For this reason, the firm is looked upon with an extra critical eye by its competitors. Global PR Blog Week did not represent all of the public relations firms in the world or even the United States. However, it is Ketchum’s lack of participation that is a let down.

    The way I see it, the situation is very similar to that of my best friend’s dad, whom served as CEO of one of the largest banks in the South. At his level, the community and his colleagues expected more from him than any other employee at that bank. Every time I went over to her house, her father was working on some sort of philanthropy project, taping commercials for United Way or fundraising for the renovation of local landmarks. At some point, I feel like giving back to the community and to his profession became part of his job expectations.

    This is how I feel about Ketchum. At some point, it is assumed that the company will give back. When they fail to do so, they are looked upon unfavorably. Yes, I am sure they are very busy and maybe Global PR Blog week and blogging in general is not at the utmost importance, but as a market leader, they are expected to participate.

    Furthermore, as PR professionals begin to believe that blogging is an entirely new and important element in the field, Ketchum’s failure to properly jump on the bandwagon will be detrimental to the firm’s name and credibility within the profession.