Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide

by lisette.paras
Category: B2B, Technology

Disclaimer: I support Novell’s PR in Asia Pacific.

On Monday, Microsoft released code for the Linux kernel community. Stories found below:



Two years ago, when Novell bridged the gap between Open Source and Windows,by forming an alliance with Microsoft, the Open Source community was up at arms. Novell was derided for getting into bed with Microsoft. Websites, bloggers and even journalists took sides. Novell became what one might call a second-class citizen in the Open Source community.

There were blogs calling for Red Hat to be acquired, so that they can be strong enough to fight Microsoft, because there is no one else out there to stop them.

And now, this latest Microsoft move to give up code to the Linux community. While there are a few reports saying its a move to better compete with VMWare, other commentators have said it will allow for better collaboration of virtual machines between Linux and Windows.

This could only mean good things for customers, who more and more have multiple platforms in their organisations and they just want things to work, and focus on making IT work for their organisation – not having to spend money on middleware, worry about interoperability or lawsuits.

Perhaps its a realization of Microsoft that there is no one-stop-shop solution to computing needs.

Now, tell me if I’m asking a silly question, but why is there always a rethoric of “war”, “conflict”, “competition” when it comes to operating platforms?

Yes, I believe that with competition comes innovation. But innovation can also come from collaboration, from sharing, from focusing on solving the problems.

Isnt this what the customer wants – people collaborating, proprietary coders exchanging ideas with the open source community, solving problems, looking at how applications should all work together?

And why the continuing suspicion among the Open Source community of Microsoft? Perhaps, in the past, Microsoft has not played fair.

But that’s in the past. I think the future’s about collaboration, about talking and solving problems – for the customer, for the industry – rather than conflict and competition. I believe that Novell’s relationship with Microsoft has opened the way to bigger things. It’s all about the customers and what they need to forge ahead.

The “peace” process is a long road, but it all starts with small steps, no?

“I don’t oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war.” – Barack Obama.

Change, we can indeed.


A year ago this month, Intel (an Ogilvy PR client) launched the Intel Insiders, a social media advisory board of 10 highly engaged, influential thought leaders in technology and new media.

This diverse group of prolific content creators and tech-setters includes:
-Brian Solis of Bub.blicio.us and PR 2.0
-Cathy Brooks of Other Than That
-Sarah Austin of Pop17
-Justine Ezarik, iJustine
-JD Lasica, author of Darknet and publisher of SocialMedia.biz
-Adriana Gascoigne of Girls in Tech
-Irina Slutsky of Geek Entertainment TV
-Frank Gruber of Somewhat Frank
-Tom Foremski of Silicon Valley Watcher
-Christian Perry of SF Beta and Snap Summit

Since the launch of the program, we’ve collaborated with the Insiders on a number of fun projects that’s helped Intel extend their reach and build key relationships with the online tech community. Highlights from the first year of our program have included a range of activities from hosting the Intel CES Kick-off Blogger Party, inside looks and visits to Intel’s FAB in Portland, Oregon and attendance at multiple industry and Intel events such as Computex, SxSW, ISEF and Intel Developer Forum (IDF). continue reading

by lisette.paras
Category: Tech PR

Ogilvy Gives Back

In honor of the Great American Cleanup Day on May 6th, Ogilvy PR’s  San Francisco employees headed to Inspiration Point in the Presidio of San Francisco to do our part in keeping California beautiful.

Decked out in our finest running shoes, cargo pants and parkas, Ogilvy PR spent hours “giving back” while enjoying the sites of one of San Francisco’s most beautiful parks. In an effort to restore the native biodiversity of the Presidio, we set out to pull even the most stubborn and invasive weeds out of Inspiration Point’s trails. The end result? Eighteen sweaty, but happy, Ogilvy PR folks and a dozen bags of weeds we conquered.

Did you participate in the Great American Clean-up Day? If so, comment and tell us what you did!

by lisette.paras
Category: Technology

When I was a…

… systems architect I had the opportunity to design these whizz bang things that would change the world one company at a time <tone check: sardonic>. The problem with the world was that it wasn’t always ready for change. So one of the skills I had to develop was to convince the world that it really did want to change.

I would go out and talk to all the stakeholders top down, bottom up, left to right and ensure that everyone felt included in the process and understood the mandate.

After a while I started to get good at this and noticed that there were certain people who were important to win over. Most of them had been around for a while and their peers looked up to them. They said things like:

“The last time they tried to do this…”

“… the whole box and dice fell over and we spent months reverting to a paper based system. It was a nightmare.” When I came across people like this I knew there would be more deployment issues and helpdesk calls from the teams around them. It wasn’t all doom and gloom though.

“This is great!”

“Just what we needed, I’m so glad someone at head office was listening.” Sure enough, when we had people like that, they would be helping out at every opportunity to make sure it worked. As a result we had less problems or when we had problems they were of shorter duration and intensity.

I started to focus all my efforts on these guys…

If I could win over these guys, they would win over the rest, less effort for more reward right?


We had worked all weekend to cut over to new Whizz Bang 2.0 and my little influencer group tested it, and they thought it was great, the testers thought it was great. We thought we ironed out all the bugs. I was as happy as Tran.

By 10am on Monday morning, we still had no support calls hit the helpdesk. This was fantastic. By 11am I was getting suspicious. There are always at least one or two questions. I asked the engineers to check the load on the servers.

Do you see the tumbleweeds?

Barely anyone was using it! I called the influencers and they said that most people thought they needed to use it when the old system worked fine. I had to dig further, so I walked around and chatted to people:

“It was so and so’s pet project anyway”, “It doesn’t do this”, “I hate it”, “Why is this box here and that one there?”

Translation: EPIC FAIL

Long story Jonathan, what’s the point?

In agencies we have good relationships with the media. This is important. It’s what many of our clients come to us for. As good as we are at media relations we should not forget that we are in

Public Relations

Not all PR is media relations. PRIA has a fancy definition with terms like “mutual understanding”, “deliberate” and “sustained”. I prefer:

Do good stuff. Tell people about it.

If you do good stuff people will talk. Do enough good stuff and people will respect and follow and you will get media coverage. Don’t do stuff just to get coverage. It’s hollow and media consumers will see through it. We need to listen. Social media gives us great opportunities to listen to what people want and what people don’t want from our clients, but there are also other ways.

Where we can we need to advise and counsel our clients on how they can do good stuff to increase the love for their brands. Coverage is a by-product of being a good corporate citizen, a good vendor to your customers.

Coverage should never be the focus.

Some time ago on a blog not so far away there was a posting about the role that borders play in digital influence. The conclusion that I drew was that borders have an extremely limited role to play when undertaking online campaigns.

It’s an old model

An outlet’s reach is only as far as it can sustain continuous profitable distribution. In terms of heritage media, it was as far as they could truck newspapers overnight, or as far as a radio or television signal could be broadcast.

The result of this is that the only people that would have access to an outlet is those within its distribution network. This generally meant, within the same city, state or country.

It follows then, that what their audiences wanted to see and hear was what was happening in their communities.

So they catered to that audience

Which lead to the local, state, national and world approach to news that we see today.

So PR adapted to that model

Who can blame us? It just makes sense. We work in geographical teams handing off work to in-country teams because they have better knowledge of their publics.

Did you notice that?

I said knowledge of their publics not knowledge of their geos or regions. Although in the old world these two aligned, in the world of Internet, your publics could be anyone, anywhere, the only commonality is they may want to hear your message.

For example

Widget Company XYZ sells computer widgets globally. It’s customer base is truly global. The company is well regarded and its music playing widgets are popular the world over.

Due to its popularity there are a legion of bloggers, and tweeple that talk about its products the world over.

When customers have questions, they go to the internet and search for a solution and try to look for other people who have the same problem. Do you think they’re only going to try to find bloggers in Australia?

So what’s the solution?

Well it’s not rocket science and I’m no rocket scientist. I think the answer actually lies in creating content aligned, not geography aligned teams. The teams may be geographically dispersed to aid in cultural differences but these virtual teams can be anywhere in the world.

If you are running a campaign to assist a product launch or educate your publics, you should be looking at any and every influencer not just those that are in your geo. Your publics won’t be that limited.

It’s not going to be easy

But really, was adapting to a mobile workforce easy when we first started trying to 10 years ago? We start by counselling ourselves, talking to our teams and get the conversation going. We then talk to our clients and get them thinking about these issues. It won’t change overnight because people won’t change overnight, but we have to start talking now.






Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide