Part of the fun of working for a great agency is being encouraged to think. Here are some of the things we’re thinking about.

Keeping up with the Joneses ­– How Skype Could Have Better Marketed Its Latest Updates

July 3, 2017 Bradford Group Administrator

Skype

Image: Pixabay

Among this year’s tech releases, we have what’s been referred to as “the new generation of Skype.” The app’s latest updates include group chats, typing notifications and the option to edit photos with doodles, emojis and a black bar of text.

But despite all this “new,” headlines are reading, “Microsoft reboots Skype with new features aimed at Facebook, Snapchat,” “Microsoft’s new Skype redesign is a radical change that looks like Snapchat,” “Skype takes on Snapchat and Instagram with stories, chatbots, and more.” You get the picture.

They’re not really producing anything new. The articles aren’t talking about a new and improved Skype; they’re talking about Skype in relation to the pre-existing apps its new format emulates.

In Skype’s defense, they were beginning to fall into obsolescence, and it may have been time for a change. And after all, the copycat game has worked before (look at how quickly Insta-stories have become a staple for the average Millennial). But even those became mundane: “It’s Skype’s answer to Snapchat Stories, which has already been copied by Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp.” (Independent.co.uk)

In the process of keeping up with the Joneses, Skype is diverging from what originally made the app useful – the one thing it had to offer that other apps didn’t. As iMessage is to texting and Snapchat is to sending disappearing photos, Skype was immediately associated with video chatting from mobile or desktop.

Articles briefly mention backend fixes regarding the original purpose, like improved usability with larger screens, but Skype chose not to focus on highlighting those types of changes. (This may have something to do with the fact that Skype has released many updated versions, which probably isn’t helping their case with this one either.) Instead, in an attempt to keep up with the Millennial market, they honed in on what young people are already using in other programs.

Now this isn’t a vote for stagnancy in a company – don’t get me wrong. Change can be a very good thing, but it’s a tricky yet important balancing act to make those updates without losing the identity of the company and its key purpose.

In the end, if Skype truly wants to attract users who will stick around, it needs unique features, not just colorful, regenerated ones from other apps.

115 comments on “Keeping up with the Joneses ­– How Skype Could Have Better Marketed Its Latest Updates
  1. Lisa Alonge says:

    Great Article on Tips to Make Your Business Anniversary. I have done a lot of research online and 15 Marketing Tips to Make Your Business Anniversary. Keep sharing!!

  2. Chris Cantwell says:

    Hey there,

    My daughter just found a cheeto that looks exactly like Chester the Tiger. She was crushed to find out that the contest had ended but I wonder if Cheetos would be interested in seeing this for future promos perhaps.

    Thanks,
    Chris
    202.731.0080

  3. Rosa says:

    Excellent post. I belive PR will continue to be more important as customers begin to focus on experiences over material goods and conscious brands over big brands.

  4. samatha reddy says:

    Hi,thanks its very useful post. this helps to power point presentors

  5. Vickie Myers says:

    What a great educational article. Very interesting and informative!

  6. Lindy Segall says:

    from an old Texas media relations warhorse…
    like the template. kept simple, under the key message of one news cycle.
    suggested add to “Advance Prep” …make sure primary and secondary spokespersons are adequately trained for media contact. put them through videotaped/recorded simulations.
    noted that you provide these services in your menu.
    onward.

  7. Kit Hannigan says:

    I couldn’t agree more with what you said about how being uninformed can be dangerous. In today’s world of fast-paced news sharing, I would think that it would still be better if we choose to get our news from trusted news programs that we have learned to love. One can easily see how being informed of the current issues in our society can help us make more intelligent decisions when it comes to voting if we have the context of how things are currently playing out. https://www.auburnexaminer.com/

  8. Beth Alexander says:

    This is a really helpful template. Thank you!

  9. Brandsconnect says:

    That is a very good information and pretty cool stuff about the branding and elevation of pages which is written in beautiful way.

  10. Cara G says:

    While looking at case studies during my PR education, we looked at this Red Cross debacle! I really appreciated how the Red Cross used humor but with a tinge of responsibility in their response to stay true to the organization’s mission. It was quick thinking to combat a potential negative mark on their organization by addressing the mistaken tweet and lightening the mood with humor.

  11. Ritesh Sharma says:

    I was unaware before applying that cover letter plays this much of importance in interview so decided to create one for myself but didn’t had any idea about how and what should i include or which mistakes should i avoid while creating one but this article helped me while creating Cover Letter so thank you for the help.Cheers to this article.

  12. Stephen Gallup says:

    Thoughtful and helpful explanation of the need for SEO.

  13. Tim Swart says:

    This post was very helpful! I am a PR student who in just four days, will walk the stage one last time. I am looking forward to applying for the public relations internship with the Bradford Group!

  14. Toni says:

    Thank you for sharing.

  15. Joseph kelly says:

    Nice information shared Gina.Haven’t used some of them before.
    https://www.localseoinc.net/

  16. Terri Kersey says:

    I’m so so proud of you!♡
    You are an amazing young woman♡

  17. Stephen Gallup says:

    You are right about Gina!!!!

  18. Stephen Gallup says:

    learned about POP sales and byline phraseology

    what is the name for that hand clapping?

  19. Dave Delaney says:

    Love this roundup, Jeff. Thanks for sharing your lessons learned.
    I just celebrated six years and feel like I’m always learning more.

  20. Gregg Kuperstein says:

    Fantastic insights, a true primer for any company looking to create something lasting and special. I see your 19th, “It takes vision and leadership,” what you’ve brought in spades. Congratulations.

  21. Tim Richardson says:

    I’ve learned many of these same lessons. Kudos to you and your team for doing hard things, the right way. Continued success!

  22. SCG says:

    Enjoyed learning more about site maps and how they help.

  23. Denys Palmer says:

    Hal was my dad’s best friend when he died- and my dad has since passed. He was a great creative mind and helped me on my own path in Nashville, writing a rockstar resume for me. You hit the nail on the head about his personality. Bambi has since passed and they loved their more simple life and never wanted for anything, continuing to live on their own terms, but on a smaller scale. My only real negative feeling about your history of Hal is the term “nudist colony”. As he and my dad would say “we aren’t ants, damnit.” My father owned the nudist camp and stepmom continues the legacy as the current owner. Although not a nudist myself, I have much respect for all of them. They were able to live life on their own terms and comfortable in their own skin. Thank you for sharing your Hal story….ps- I bought one of the last red convertibles he owned. He always kept one.

    • Jeff Bradford says:

      Denys, I’m sorry to hear that Bambi has passed away. She was pretty young. I’ll change “colony” to “camp.’

  24. Stephen Gallup says:

    Tell me a story……..Life is a story………CTA, I liked that…

  25. hamza ali says:

    Such a Great Seo tools for webmasters some are new for me Thanks for the list
    Also, add small SEO tools websites like https://seotoolsearch.com

  26. Patty Tobin, Tobin Communications LLC, Editorial & Media Relations Services says:

    Thanks for the tips. As an independent PR professional it is always useful to see what firms find useful.

  27. S.C.G. says:

    Informative, with specifics. Helpful, interesting, cogent.

  28. Jeff Turney says:

    Spencer, very insightful and spot on!

  29. Rick Regen says:

    Great! Wonderful lists and memories.

    Hohohohoho!

    Good health always! That is the best gift you can receive!

  30. Free SEO Tools says:

    Hello Gina,

    Awesome collection of tools .
    Google Data Studio is new for me, I never used this one. I will definitely try this one.
    You can also add WebmasterToys to your list as it is 100% free SEO Tool. You can check it at http://www.webmastertoys.com/. Thanks

  31. Stephen Gallup says:

    Thanks for the information. Things continue to change exponentially.

  32. Stephen Gallup says:

    Good ideas and practices

  33. PRM says:

    Excellent and so true! Will this article appear on Google?

  34. Patricia Maida says:

    This is excellent advice. Voice is everything in successful writing, and the ways listed are most helpful.
    Having taught composition and read tons of essays and term papers, I can tell you that in the best papers, the reader’s voice, his or her confident self, emerges.

  35. JC Bradford says:

    Excellent. Exquisitely written and thought. I learned something about tech PR.

  36. Sharon Fitzgerald says:

    Well done!

  37. Brian hood says:

    Hi I got a big idea I like to sell I ben working on it for about 2 years now

  38. Stephen Gallup says:

    Great…informative and practical. Thank you:)

  39. Sean Sullivan says:

    LOL – so let me get this straight! So your telling us how You don’t like our writing by putting together a snarky know-it-all opinionated piece from the point of view of “In PR and writing: I’m better than you.” I’d love to see your cover letter….so I could throw it out!

  40. Tanya Adams says:

    Excellent article!

  41. Kathleen Calligan says:

    Hi Jeff if you want to sail you can sail in landlocked Tennessee give me & my husband Rick Smith a call we sail on Old Hickory Lake & in the BVI
    42 ft Beneteau
    615-482-1040

  42. Madeline says:

    The Ms have so much in common!! It’s a great time to join the Bradford Group, and I’m so excited about all that’s ahead!

  43. Rhonda Bingham says:

    Enjoyed the blog and know that work ethic to be true – it is what makes you and makes your clients so satisfied. May you be blessed with many more years of growth and service. Looking forward to seeing you on the 22nd.

  44. Stephen Gallup says:

    enjoyed the information…good to know….

  45. LB says:

    If anyone knows throw away phrases and jargon it’s marketers. When I happily left my last job I couldn’t bear the influx of Marketing professionals who would say “deep-dive” and “boil the ocean” in every meeting. Yawn.

  46. Kate Paine says:

    Excellent post! This also applies to LinkedIn profiles, too. I’ll add another thought: it is not a best practice to cut/paste your resume-speak to your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is an opportunity for you to describe something thoughtfully and in a more conversational tone. It’s okay to take some language from the resume but do so carefully.

  47. Ledile says:

    Thanks for the article :)

  48. Hannah Watterson says:

    Don’t forget people who say “infer” when they mean “insinuate”.

  49. Ned Christensen says:

    I’m gonna have to find a sentence in which to utilize the word “probity.” Just because.
    Really good points, but I have to wonder how may resume screeners recognize most of this. Nobody taught them any language skills either.

  50. Brenda Greene says:

    Please, new professionals, heed this advice.

  51. Gigi says:

    Thank you for also ridiculing the word leverage. That one almost makes me violent.

    • Kate Paine says:

      I couldn’t agree more. I work with people to revise their LinkedIn profiles and I can’t tell you how many of these killer buzzwords are used. Then, if I change them to a more creative – but active – word, they change it back. Once I explain, they get it. “Leverage” is one such word as is “impact” and I literally have a visceral reaction.

  52. Ellen Booth says:

    I was about 5 minutes into my career when I realized that the word “unique” had been rendered useless by vapid over-use. I think of this word and its synonyms as lazy words. Another lazy word? Beautiful. Another? I think I’ll start pulling from your list of 11.

  53. Alvin Wright says:

    I hate, hate, hate jargon. Did mention I hate jargon. Thanks for the article.

    • Brenda Greene says:

      I battle daily with my marketing colleagues over jargon. They outnumber the PR department 8:1. Can you say David v. Goliath?

  54. Susan Heard says:

    These are killers in nearly any profession. “Prior” is the one that makes me crazy – especially at the end of a sentence: “She was married three times prior.” Ick! In my industry it is often said that customers can “access telephonic services”. Can’t they just call?!

  55. Sabiana says:

    Nice blog. You have pointed out alot of mistakes, which one would tend to ignore because it’s happened a number of times in the past. But that means accepting it instead of pointing them out and helping those repeating the mistakes twice over. The other common one is quiet and quite. See that surfacing very often .

  56. Nancy says:

    I just don’t get how anyone can get it’s/its wrong. Drives me bananas. Grammar school rule: if there is an apostophe, it has replaced a letter that is missing from the word.

  57. Rick Harris says:

    AP style adherents will quibble on comprise and praise as tight writing the phrase, “college communications departments comprise professors.”

  58. Maria Iadinardi says:

    I enjoyed reading your blog. Sadly, it’s difficult to find great writers and thinkers in today’s fast-paced world of abbreviations, hashtags, and auto-correct.

    Let’s get back to basics and clear, simple language.

    • Gigi says:

      I don’t know if it’s a good or bad thing that I will be teaching an entire college class on grammar for students who hope to land a career in PR. I’ve learned they don’t teach grammar in high school anymore. What do they learn in high school now?

  59. Carrie Wirth says:

    I laughed out loud at your take on “utilize”- a word I hate. You left out “prior” – another one that makes me crazy.

    • Tom Smith says:

      Thanks for “use” versus “utilize.” It’s astounding to see and hear the number of supposedly well-educated people using this word.

  60. Heather Ailara says:

    Love this post. I literally…no, figuratively?? No, LITERALLY…laughed until my sides hurt. I intend to utilize these guidelines with colleagues to raise the bar on quality writing in our industry niche. Thank you!

  61. Sharon V. says:

    Excellent read! I was very relieved to see I had none of these 11 “errors” in my resume. But I did have to go back and check just to make sure. Thank you.

  62. Jan (Barnette) Amos says:

    I really enjoy reading the blogs on your website. This one is the best yet. And I’m going to quit writing now lest I be critiqued!! I’m an accountant – not a writer <>

  63. Laura Saylor Waldrip says:

    Congratulations Alex. Your extended family is very proud of you (Newby ). Sounds like you are having a great time along with an exciting career!

  64. Amanda Hood says:

    Congratulations Alex!

  65. Karen L Kane Druckenmiller says:

    I would LOVE to purchase “Winnie Chair”, where can I get it ???
    Karen Kane-Druckenmiller
    klkdruck@gmail.com
    cell 5023873287

  66. Tracey Wright says:

    Inspired me to learn something new today!

  67. Jeannie Davis says:

    This would be great for an orthodontic office and for small businesses trying to attract customers.

  68. Laura Klemczak says:

    Great article! You make some handy suggestions, Erica!

  69. Hannah R says:

    Wow Brianna seems great!

  70. Stephen Gallup says:

    Thoughtful, interesting, in more than just this field. These ideas can be used properly in other areas as well….

  71. Dave Delaney says:

    Thrilled to be included in your list. Thanks a million, Meredith.

  72. Julia Watson says:

    Fantastic blog! Cool, witty and of course, not a bore. I wish I can blog like you. Keep up the good work. Can I suggest some websites that I found useful? There are numerous marketplaces like http://www.zopthemes.com, http://www.gicree.com, http://www.themeforest.com, http://www.odesk.com and many other wonderful sites. You can suggest it to your friends so that they can do all that freelancing stuff, that you are talking about over here. Get rocking!

  73. Lauren King says:

    Depth- ability to relate to a variety of subjects and people. Depth is a trait that separates the average from the unique. It is useful for creating and relating– two essentials for a successful business.

  74. Susan Oldfield says:

    Jeff,
    Great story and a huge congratulations to 15
    years of growth & success. So proud of you
    and all at The Bradford Group.

    Love,
    Susan & Ed

  75. Haley A says:

    Impressed.

    Not the internship search I expected…
    Last week I met with an internship advisor at my university, and she talked me though the process of finding companies in my intended field (PR & marketing, evidently). After scrolling through lists and scanning company websites, I find myself growing harder and harder to impress.
    The Bradford Group was the third click-worthy item on the first list I visited, categorized under public relations. And while most of the others only got the initial click, I seem to keep finding my way back here, to what I am now thinking might have been the lucky click number three.
    I was honestly discouragingly apathetic by my other options. A website says a lot about a company, and I am still shocked that companies focusing in public relations and marketing could host such yawn-worthy pages. Sometimes it was a poor webpage setup that made me assume right off the bat that it wasn’t a company worth learning from. Basics, people. Other times, boring content and generic descriptions made me wonder if that reflected office life. Perhaps I am setting my standard too high. Maybe I am being too choosey. But why put in the time researching and applying with a company that is sub-par to what I’m dreaming of? I’d prefer to invest that time looking for the perfect fit, the best teacher.
    I mean honestly, I don’t even like yellow, but here I am again, scrolling through your website, trying to get a better feel for who you are and if you would like what I bring to the table (you would, by the way). After reading a few sections and blog posts, you seem too good.

    I know that I want a career in PR and marketing, but I need to find the rhythm and learn how to do this thing for real. More than anything, more than ANYTHING, I want to learn. Learn my strengths and what I need to work on more, learn the little things that everyone already knows and the big things that will make a difference in my career, learn how to do this business right. From my first impressions, it seems to me like you are the Ivy League of PR, you really know your stuff. I would be honored, enthusiastic, riveted and ready to learn from you.

    Contact me if you’d like. You can be sure I’ll be contacting you (assertive, but hey, this is business, right?). I look forward to sharing my resume with you.

    Now off to read some more blog posts.

    Haley.

  76. Doug Davies says:

    I resonate to the above list and possess all of these traits. I would add another-the ability to cultivate these traits in team members(and clients) while engaged in meaningful projects. Creativity is a very powerful thing. It’s the O2 in a creative firm.

  77. Elizabeth Jones says:

    This sentence is in your third paragraph. “While we were small, we would promote as seemed fit, but without a specific list of targets we wanted to employees to hit or traits they should display.” I’ve reread it a couple times and I believe the “to” before employees is a mistake.

  78. Alex Kunkel says:

    Congrats with your new beginnings at the Bradford Group. As an aspiring Public Relations gal myself, it is refreshing to know there is still room for great “YoPro” in the hipster, ever-evolving city we live in.

    I recently applied for an Account Associate myself with the Bradford Group and hope to grow my knowledge and experiences within the realm I’ve been passionate about for years, PR!

  79. Jenna Lefever says:

    Hello,

    I bookmarked the Bradford Group’s PR Account Manager opening a few weeks ago and wanted to find out if the position has been filled. I am currently a senior account executive with Tierney in Philadelphia and Harrisburg, Pa., and am very interested in applying for the position with the Bradford Group if it remains open.

    Thank you,
    Jenna Lefever

  80. Ken Anderson says:

    Go big or go home.

    Congrats to the whole team!

  81. Ryan Girves says:

    I received an email about the Bradford Group through the University of Kentucky. I feel that I have most, if not all, of your desired traits you are looking for in an employee. I would love to learn more about internship positions!

  82. Tasha says:

    This are great tips. Would really love a follow up on points 3-5 for the small business owners. A little more of a step by step guide of how one can use them to grow in business.

  83. John C Tredennick says:

    Great article and an incredible party. You guys know how to make things happen.

  84. Stephen says:

    Great word picture combinations. I liked how you tied the message content to the emotional aspects.

    Yes, who cannot look at a puppy and find some joy and happiness there.

    Lula is home:)

  85. Lisa Shupe says:

    Great story! Not only has Kenn decorated my home, for holidays and parties, he is now a personal friend. His home line is FABULOUS and I am truly excited for his new endeavor! You could not have teamed up with anyone who is more talented, creative and innovative. Cheers to you both!

  86. Sandy Martin says:

    Enjoyed the coverage of your experience so far. Very happy it hasn’t been boring, mundane, or predictable ! Keeping you on your toes !! Grandpa McWilliams was a journalism major at U of M, and I know he would have been impressed with your command of the English language.

  87. Keith Heckelman says:

    Fabulous lessons for anyone who cares about excellence, and outstanding reminders for any job. Very much appreciated!

  88. Marita Sexton says:

    The concept of creativity coming from limits, not freedom, was a new concept for me to ponder. The more I consider my areas of experience, the more I understand and agree with the concept. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

  89. Ray Bingham says:

    Erin, as a writer I’ve always preferred the dictionary. I like to look at all of the other words around the one I’m trying to find. I enjoyed your blog.

  90. Dayna Mari says:

    Enjoyed the Valentine read. Thank You for writing advice and I agree with you on the idea of ” less is best ” when it comes to Valentines Day sentiments.

  91. michael heard says:

    Like your posting. Don’t know if you are familiar with the Luscher Color Test, studied it in college. Here is a link to a quick personality quiz based on it. http://colorquiz.com/about.php

    Wonder how it would work with clients? Some companies use it for hiring decisions and also some universities use it for admission decisions.

  92. Katie Marcario says:

    Hi there,

    My name is Katie Marcario and I’d like to apply for the open position at The Bradford Group. I’ve spent the past year in the PR/Marketing industry and am currently serving as a freelance publicist, but am looking for something more stable. Please let me know who I can send my resume to as I’d love to be considered.

    Thank you,

    Katie Marcario

  93. Drew Logsdon says:

    My media consumption on a daily basis usually goes like this…

    1) Check Google News first thing in the morning. I have filters setup to pull directly for Nashville news items as well as from other areas of particular interest through Google alerts. Additionally, I make sure I check the whole feed. Just because Science and Health are at the bottom doesn’t mean there’s a lack of interesting items.

    2) Check Twitter feed for a round-up of blog writers I follow as well as news outlets. Usually have a tab running all day to check periodically during downtime. Also make sure I use the search function to see other responses or stories on items that have piqued my interest from the Google feed.

    3) Check the news subreddits I subscribe to on Reddit. This is usually last and kept strictly to the postings but if there seems to be a lot of comments to a particular story then I want to read those too. Great to get the perspective from others who are also consuming the same story.

    4) Listen to podcasts around the house from NPR. More-so on the weekends and never forgetting “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me!”

  94. Stephen Gallup says:

    Sounds great! I hope the BG keeps growing.

  95. Chester Butler says:

    Jeff, I did enjoy this history of PR and the tales of Hal. Too cool. This underscores the fact that there is still room in Nashville for a maverick. Long live mavericks!
    I did notice that Carden and Cherry was absent in your catalog. I think you would like Keeper of the Clown by John (Buster)Cherry…another maverick who has enjoy success.

  96. Paula Lovell says:

    Cool graphic, Jeff. I don’t know how you figured all that out. Fun to look at … and a great blog.

  97. Gean says:

    Very informative list but you have not included a good site I use often, I have been advertising my business using http://www.boostasite.com It should add some value to your ad campaign

  98. Amber says:

    Thank you, Mr. Bradford, for such a wonderful article! Being born in 1986, the negativity that is being blasted all over the Millennials by the media always gets me a little fired up. I came close to just walking out of the last mandatory diversity training seminar I went to when the instructor decided to show the 60 Minutes episode to which I believe you are referring. It is refreshing to hear a company stand up for its younger employees, especially when a lot of us are hard-working, creative individuals who are just trying to make ends meet in this trying economic time and prove our worth in the working sense to boot. So, yeah, I just wanted to send a little love your way. And, of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t ask… have you filled that entry-level position yet? :)

  99. Kathy Panzone says:

    Can you give me more infomation about the job position? Thanks so much!

    • Molly Garvey says:

      Thanks for your interest, Kathy! Our account associate position is the Bradford Group’s entry-level position. It combines regular account executive tasks, such as writing and pitching press releases, with administrative tasks, such as researching media lists, speaking engagement opportunities, etc.

      We’re looking for someone who fits well with our already fantastic team (if we do say so ourselves) and who’s smart, proactive and focused on results.

      More information can be found here: http://www.bradfordgroup.com/about/join-our-team/career-opportunities/.

      Hope that helps!

  100. Heidi says:

    Erin your sister is right 99% of the time. At least that’s how it appears to be in my life!
    ~Heidi

  101. Stephen says:

    Interesting read, especially the terms UV hit, etc., I still enjoy the touch of the paper, the solidity of print.

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