The Five Things You Shouldn’t Have Missed This Week: Friday, June 07, 2013
Children’s Cancer Center Rebrands Chemotherapy As “Superformula” - via Buzzfeed
NIVEA Creates An Ad That Charges Cellphones With Solar Energy - via Design Taxi
#PubLooShocker Restroom Drunk Driving Stunt Will Scare the Crap Out of You - via Mashable
Fake Subway Ads From PBS Critique Reality TV - via PSFK
Urban Ears Scratch Poster - via Adverblog
It may be the most important paragraph you will write about your company. You have most likely seen it, but may not known what it was called or its origin. What is it? It is your boilerplate.
In public relations, the boilerplate is the last paragraph of a press release that describes the company product, service or brand featured. This should contain facts about the company (where are you based, what do you do, private/public, services, clients, awards) as well as some compelling information, your mission, positioning (first brand to do such and such). In the digital age, it should also contain hyperlinks to your website and/or social media profiles.
Plainly, it’s the “About Us” section that is copy and pasted onto every press release, fact sheet and any additional marketing communications materials – even on your company’s LinkedIn and social media profiles.
So where did this term come from?
The term boilerplate actually dates back to the 1800s when manufacturers of steam boilers would attach a metal plate on their boilers as a sort of trademark so people would know who made the boiler and where it was made. In the early newspaper days, they had “boilerplates” or actually printing plates for each company they covered regularly, so they could easily include the company background with stories they wrote. This saved time in the printing process. The term stuck.
Here’s an example of a boilerplate for our client, Liebherr:
Driven by innovation and characterized by sophisticated, elegant design, Germany-based Liebherr Corporation brings the best of Europe to the refrigeration category in North America. Visit www.liebherr-appliances.com to view Liebherr’s full product line of freestanding, built-in and fully integrated refrigeration and wine and humidor cigar storage units.
Check out the other installments of our 101 Series posts:
April 1st also known as April Fools’ Day has, in the past, had people on their toes wondering if they’ll run into any pranks. Then a funny thing happened. Brands started to put on their own pranks and jokes. In fact, Google’s yearly pranks have become something to look forward to.
Why would a brand want to play a joke on their customers though? There might be a few reasons. One of the most important reasons is the potential press coverage the brand may receive. The right story at the right time can get your brand front and center in from of very large audiences. Then there’s the engagement factor. With the rise of social media, it’s become more and more important to connect with customers and fans. Pranks or jokes allow the brand to create humorous content that can have a much higher “viral” factor than brand content might normally have. It can also help to humanize the brand and show a lighter tone.
Of course, some people are bound to take the brand jokes as serious news. Fans of Scope’s Bacon Mouthwash voiced their displeasure when they found out it wasn’t real and that the prank actually began prior to April 1st. Even Google, whose jokes tend to be popular, faced some backlash over the “shutting down YouTube” prank, from users angry over their actual shuttering of Google Reader. So while an April Fools’ joke can be beneficial, you have to know your audience and make sure the jokes don’t touch on sensitive subjects.
Below is just a sampling our how brands “pranked” the public this year (even the White House got involved).
1) Scope’s New Bacon Mouthwash
2) Vowel-less Twttr; Vowels For Twitter Plan To Cost $5/month
3) Seamless Offers Deluxe Delivery By Models
4) US Army (Grumpy) Cat Recruitment
5) Virgin Air Announces A Glass Bottomed Plane
6) Google Maps’ Treasure Mode
7) Sony Animalia Tech For Pets
8) The White House’s Special Message by Kid President Not The President
9) Lunch Meat DVD Kiosks From Redbox
10) Sour Patch Kids Candy Launches Shower Patch Kids Body Wash