Multilingual Business Communication

April 8, 2009

Searching for innovative press releases

Filed under: Anja Peleman, internship — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 9:21 am

Maintaining good press relations is of vital importance for every company. It is a way to communicate a message to the general public. And this is surely the case for VMMA, the Flemish Media Company. This flourishing media company is the parent company of the first Flemish commercial television station: VTM. Nowadays, the media company has expanded its television stations with JIM and 2BE. Furthermore, VMMA owns two radio transmitters, namely Q-Music and JOE.

The ongoing changing media environment is an additional difficulty for the Press Relations department of VMMA. That is why they must always keep looking for new methods for launching their press releases in the new, digital media environment. During my internship, I will try to contribute to this by doing research on how press releases can stay effective in this digital media environment. Next to that, I will also scan newspapers and websites on what is written about VMMA’s programs, organize press conferences and write press releases. 

I am very enthusiastic about doing my internship in this media company, so… VMMA, here I come!


April 7, 2009

The eBay of job hunting

Filed under: Anja Peleman, business communication, employee communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 8:41 pm

What would you get if you crossed for example the auction website eBay with the job search engine No need to reflect too long on this, because there is an example of this combination:! This website was founded in March 2008, as a school project of three students, who wanted to create a new type of e-college-job marketplace. The target group were students of Boston, who could use the website for earning some cash for college. Nowadays, the website has grown to offer different types of jobs, from babysitting to finance. Furthermore, because of the great succes of the website, a second Beta-version has been released in January 2009.

How does it exactly work? First of all, employers post a job offer on the website and write down how much they will pay for that position. Then it is up to potential employees to start tossing out their qualifications and to ‘bid’ on how much they would be willing to work for. So the system is quite similar as how people bid on clothes or antiques, but the outcome is different of course. 

Is this the new way of job hunting in the E-world we live in?

Anja Peleman

April 2, 2009

Cities turn into stars thanks to Sultan Sushi!

Filed under: Anja Peleman, company, Jana Mahieu, Karen Decabooter, Kirsten De Weerdt — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 11:08 am

Nowadays, an increasing number of city governments are discovering the benefits of promoting their city. Therefore, it is not surprising that city marketing is gaining more importance. Most city marketing projects mainly focus on attracting tourists and investors. Think of the city Hasselt, that wants to present itself as ‘The city of taste’ to attract tourists. However, we can ask ourselves whether tourists and investors are really the most important target groups of a city.

ss2 Sultan Sushi, a Belgian production company, believes in another city marketing strategy by mainly focusing on inhabitants. Since they are the producers of the popular television program Fata Morgana, they want to translate this Fata Morgana concept into a creative city marketing project. For those who are not familiar with the program: in Fata Morgana, citizens were challenged to fulfil five assignments in order to win stars for their city.

Sultan Sushi would like to provoke the same emotions and togetherness between the inhabitants with their new city marketing project.  The main difference is that  the assignments will  focus on social responsibility, so the result will be something permanent and beneficial for the inhabitants.

We are looking forward to witness their first city marketing project. Cities, seize this unique opportunity!

(Karen Decabooter, Kirsten De Weerdt, Jana Mahieu, Anja Peleman)

March 31, 2009

Can I please use a US toilet?

Filed under: Anja Peleman, business communication, crisis communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 8:17 pm

This is what Gennady Padalka, a Russian cosmonaut on the International Space Station (ISS) is asking, because he is no longer allowed to use a US toilet on the Station. Conversely, he is being asked to use only national toilets. This is not the first time something like this happens, Mr. Padalka is also no longer allowed to use a US exercise bike. Moreover, the US and Russian cosmonauts now have to eat their own rations. Honestly, I do have to say that all of this does sound a bit banal, but I can imagine this may create some unpleasant situations up there in space. That is also the reason why I am wondering: how can situations like this be created?

Mr. Padalka himself blames the upcoming commercial aspect of the space missions since 2003, where Moscow started billing Washington for sending its astronauts into space. Take for example the US billionaire Charles Simonyi, a software tycoon who paid $35m for a 13-day trip to the station. It are ‘trips’ like these that create a kind of hindrance for the astronauts living on the Station, for having less space then. Next to that, Mr. Padalka blames the politicians for situations like these: “Cosmonauts are above the ongoing squabble, no matter what officials decide. It’s politicians and bureaucrats who can’t reach agreement, not us”.

Let us hope that his words can help to let the politicians realize that this Cold War-like stand-off must be solved very soon, so that Mr. Padalka can use the toilet he would like.

Anja Peleman

February 5, 2009

Need cash? Ask Bailout Bill

Filed under: Anja Peleman, business communication, marketing communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 7:28 pm

Was2154617The past two days must have been the most luckily moment of those people in need for money. A mystery man, calling himself ‘Bailout Bill’, handed out cash in New York. What people had to do for this? Not so much. First of all, standing in line for the ‘Bailout Booth’, a small cubicle, in the heart of Manhattan’s Times Square. Secondly, telling their problems to an assistant standing in front of the cubicle. And that’s it. Everyone was said to receive something. The minimum anyone could get is $50 with the maximum of $5,000.

A striking question is of course: why would anyone do something like that? Bailout Bill himself says there are two goals: firstly, it’s partly a publicity stunt for a new website, Secondly, ‘the mystery man’ says he also wants to help ordinary people in the same way that the US government is bailing out banks and other corporations. With this second statement, I do believe Bailout Bill wants to soften the real marketing basis of this stunt.

That’s also the reason why I do wonder the objectivity of this marketing stunt. wr_420_bailoutbill-420x0In my opinion, just handing out money to those people who are in need for it, seems to be an irrealistic fairytale. There is of course more in it for ‘Bailout Bill’ than just showing his good heart. Why should otherwise the cubicle be surrounded by people holding banners with the website printed on them? But I do wonder if the people who received money really cared about the fact that this website exists? Will a stunt like this be able to boost the number of visitors of this website? Nevertheless, I do have to say that it truly is a marketing stunt worth mentioning.

Anja Peleman

November 2, 2008

Halloween gives birth to anti-smoking ad

Filed under: Anja Peleman, business communication, marketing communication — meertaligebedrijfscommunicatie @ 9:24 pm

The National Health Service (NHS) has already made a lot of hard-hitting advertisements to discourage smoking. The newest one was a TV campaign, timed especially for Halloween. All these ads are part of the NHS’ Smokefree campaign, which was kicked-off in June this year. This was set up because numbers of the NHS showed that over a fifth of adults still smoke.

 In this anti-smoking ad, created by advertising agency Miles Calcraft Brigingshaw Duffy (MCVD), an obvious link with Halloween has been made. With this Halloween-ad, the NHS wants to promote the NHS Stop Smoking Service.  The NHS also set up a complete website for this. It is also not the first time that the NHS mimics smoking habits of parents: there was already an advertisement set to the famous kid song ‘On Account’a I Love You’ from Shirley Temple.

Even though the NHS tries to be original with this ad by anticipating Halloween, we can ask ourselves the question if linking the anti-smoking action to one event in the year will have enough impact? How long can this ad be broadcasted without losing its clear topic link to Halloween? In my opinion, this ad can surely be called very original, but I doubt whether the impact will be bigger just by producing an ad for this one event in the year. Even though, I can understand that the NHS searches new ways to convince smokers that smoking is bad for your health. But unfortunately, many studies have already shown that the impact of overall anti-smoking ads stays very negligible. A very important aspect for an anti-smoking campaign to be effective is that it must be a prologonged campaign, like McVey and Stapleton found in their study. So it seems to me that a good idea for the NHS could be to maintain this original way of making advertisements. An anti-smoking ad that is linked with Christmas for example, or with the celebration of New Year. Things like that could be the perfect way to catch the eye from smokers in my opinion.  

When talking about anti-smoking ads, a particular blog must be mentioned:  this blog was especially set up to collect different anti-smoking ads from all around the world. And there it is obvious again: producers of this kind of advertisements search their inspiration everywhere!

Anja Peleman

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