Cleveland One of Top 25 Fittest Cities

I just came across a new Forbes list, America’s Fittest Cities, and was both excited and surprised to see Cleveland listed as #24. Go us! There were also 2 other Ohio cities listed, Columbus (#29) and Cincinnati (#14).

Forbes used varying criteria to come up with its rankings, including obesity rates, heart disease statistics, number of parks and recreation areas per capita, percentage of population that smokes, etc.

The top 3 were DC, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Denver. Boston, my old stomping ground, was #4.

I hope next year we can creep up a few notches. The list only contained 45 cities, so technically Cleveland was still in the bottom half. I’m optimistic though, and I think we’re making headway – it seems that people that I know are trying to eat healthier, lose weight, etc. and new gyms are opening up around me all the time. The races I’ve run this year have claimed to have record attendance. Also, I’ve noticed a significant increase in Farmers Markets this Spring, and some cool new programs for having healthy, farm fresh groceries, like the Fresh Fork Market.

Cleveland2To check out a slide show of the entire list, click here. For more information, check out the whole Forbes article.

*Thanks to @megrote for tweeting about the list!

WMJI Rebrands Itself (or has some fun during playoffs)

I listen to the radio in the shower every day – I can’t help it, I’m a shower singer. And I always to 105.7 in the morning. Last Monday, I kept hearing what I thought was a “Beeeeep” on the radio, as if someone had said an expletive. Which to me, didn’t make much sense – as more of a family-friendly program (with interviews with figures such as the director of the Cleveland Zoo) the Lanigan and Malone Show hardly ever have swearing. Was it a part of their “Monday Moaning” feature? Negative. So I ignored it, thinking I was hearing things.

 Then, driving into work, I noticed that each time the station was playing their recording of their jingle “Majic 105.7,” they beeped out the word magic. When they stated station related things, they said “Cavs 105.7” – and that’s when it hit me – they were rebranding themselves during the playoff games!

 I mentioned this to my boyfriend, and he looked at me like I was crazy. “Re-branding? You see things differently – not everything is a PR opportunity,” he said. “It’s just a cool thing they’re doing to support the Cavs.” 

While I’m pretty sure that the marketing people at WMJI weren’t sitting around one day during lunch and saying, “How can we do a mini-rebranding experiment during the Cavs playoffs?” Radio, like all forms of traditional media, can always use a little livening up and I still think this is a great opportunity for them to rebrand themselves. Why?

  • majic cross outFirst, “Cavs 105.7” is memorable and amusing. Using the “bleep” noise traditionally reserved for expletives is both noticeable and funny. 
  • Second, they’re creating an identity for themselves that their audience can relate to. They’re endorsing the Cavs, the team that the majority of their audience supports. I ‘m not saying that Cavs fans by association are now going to become WMJI fans, but having your audience identify with you is always a plus.
  • Third, this mini-rebranding is relevant and timely. The Orlando Magic are playing the Cavs RIGHT now (literally, I’m writing this post during halftime of the Cavs game), and this name change is occurring right now as well. Once the tournament is over, their name will probably go back to as usual.

 To read more about the temporary name change, you can read more about it at WKYC and the Cleveland Leader.

And check out their website (screenshot below) you can see it says “This Is A Majic Free Zone.”


NightTline: More Proof That Twitter is Going to Rule the World

ABC just announced that “Nightline” is increasing its involvement in social media with the introduction of NightTline, their newest program that uses Twitter for real-time discussion with its viewers. The show will use Twitter as a vehicle for viewers to discuss and debate topics with the show’s correspondents.

The first show airs tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. EST and according to ABC will “provide a forum for viewers to simultaneously discuss and debate the news of the day through the prism of Twitter.” According to Mashable (my favorite blog), the show will also have a Twitter widget that allows viewers comment on and react to the debate.

ntl_twitter_090511_mnThe show will be air on the Nightline website and ABC News Now, ABC’s 24 hour digital news network.  Tomorrow’s show theme is torture.

Twitter and news are no strangers to each other — major news stations have Twitter accounts, Twitter is always super active during major news events (remember the election?), and many people often cite Twitter as reporting about breaking news, even before the news media does (I remember hearing about the Minneapolis bridge collapse on Twitter before on the news, same with reading about the Chinese earthquake from @scobleizer, and more). Still, however, this is undoubtedly the most unique way I’ve seen Twitter being used by mainstream media.

What interesting ways have you seen the media use Twitter? Do you think the show will be a success?

What Is Social Media? The Cleveland Social Media Club Has Some Thoughts…

It seems like people asking are always me, “What IS social media?” Whether it’s a question on a panel (and it was the first question Michael DeAloia asked us at this panel!), part of a presentation, or part of every day conversation, someone is always going to be looking for the answer. (Note: One of my earliest posts,  Social Media Find of the Week, even looked at this question.)

Well, look no further for your answer -at the Cleveland Social Media Club meeting in April 2009, we asked members: How do you define Social Media? The responses were compiled into a video, now on YouTube. Check it out below!

Tips of the Trade

Last week I attended my first trade show – Windpower 2009 – on behalf of some of my clients in the wind industry. Not only was it a great experience to see everything happening with renewable energy and wind power throughout our country, but simply attending the show was a valuable learning experience.

Before I left, I asked the question to my Twitter followers to provide some tips. Not only did they prove a valuable resource, but I’ve come up with some of my own tips. Here are 5 of the best tips, compiled from my coworkers, some tweeple and my experiences:

1.  Wear comfortable shoes

I was told by many Twitter followers (thanks @Hirsh @BenBrugler @ActivDefiance84) to wear comfy shoes at the show. But don’t just save the shoes for the standing at the show booth — wear comfy shoes at the airport, on the airplane, walking around the trade show floor, etc. You see the trend here? With so much going on at trade shows, pain is the last thing you want to worry about.

2. Bring lots of cash

I’m not the type of person that carries around a lot of cash – I’m often guilty of using my credit card to pay for a pack of gum! You cannot assume that every place you go will be able to take credit cards, and you never know when you’ll need cash to tip people (i.e. the people who carry your bags to your room). In our situation, we took a taxi from the airport to our hotel, only to find that the credit card machine was down, forcing us to pay cash. Thankfully, we had planned ahead – because that taxi ride was not cheap!

3. If you’re bringing press kits, flash drives, folders, etc., ship them ahead of time

I prefer to bring a small suitcase and carry my luggage on with me. My coworkers prefer to check their bags and carry few items on the plane. Whatever your packing system is, who wants to lug anything extra than they have to? We ended up packing two boxes of electronic press kits (flash drives), one box of firm collateral and a box of print press kits. Because we shipped them ahead of time, we didn’t have to worry about any bringing extra baggage.

4. Bring a sharp object to open those packages you shipped

While we had planned ahead and shipped those packages to our hotel, we didn’t plan a way to open them! Between the three of us, we had some nail files, nail clippers, tweezers, and other less-than-sharp objects. Next time: bring a knife or razor blade or package opener! (A warning: If you’re only carrying your luggage on, you probably do not want to bring a sharp object through security)

5.  Know what’s essential to have with you at all times – and have a simple way to carry it all around

I found myself dragging two bags and three large boxes into McCormick Center. I was able to store most of these items at the booth, but what about when I met an interested member of the media when I was away from the booth (eating lunch/in the bathroom/walking the floor) and was without my supplies? You need to devise a way to carry some essential items with you. My solution: I had a good-sized purse with me, which carried my essentials (hand lotion, antibacterial wipes, mints, chapstick, my phone, and some press kits). Thanks to some great advice from my boss, I used my trade show badge (draped around my neck at all times) as a way of carrying the rest of my essentials: business cards and tickets to events.

Tradeshow tip honorable mentions:

  • “Don’t let the client see you in your jammies” – Definitely true. Be sure to pack something “presentable” just in case there are late-night client needs!
  • “Arrive early – even earlier than they tell you to” (via @monkeygrrl) – She’s right –you never know when your taxi driver will go the wrong way, when you’ll get stuck in traffic, or when the time difference (if there is one) will throw you off!
  • @AR_Robbrown used Mahalo Answers to give me tons of great responses to my twitter inquiry. His responses are found here.