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Media Contact:
Steven Webster
Birnbach Communications
cell: 617.512.8635
swebster@birnbachcom.com

Birnbach Communications Issues Top Tech, Business and Media Trends for 2012

Marblehead, MA, Jan. 30, 2012 – Birnbach Communications, Inc., a boutique public relations and social media agency, today issued its top media trends for 2012. Taking an analyst's approach to monitoring the media, the agency based its list of trends on conversations with reporters, bloggers and Twitter members.

Birnbach Communications compiles an annual list of media trends for its clients, who operate across a range of industries, including technology, unified communications, financial software and services, clean tech, healthcare, consumer, social networking, nonprofit and education sectors. The trends help the agency's clients work more effectively with reporters, analysts, bloggers, and customers on social networking sites

.The following are among Birnbach Communications' trends for 2012:

  • The desire to be connected 24/7 may change in 2012. You almost never have downtime anymore, and people are beginning to notice that's not all good. Sure, if you are waiting in line at the post office or bank (something today's kindergarteners won't do by the time they hit college), you'll be able to check email, play an app, text your friend, or make a call. But this lack of downtime may negatively impact our ability to concentrate and avoid distractions at work and at home. The recognition that we actually need to disconnect, that we need downtime, is likely to generate coverage this year. Already a handful of companies have limited email, both during the day and after hours – and we think more will join those ranks.
  • More viewers will cut the cable cord. This year, expect more people to reduce their monthly expenses by cancelling their cable subscription – partly to reduce monthly expenses and partly to use new technology that provides a flexible alternative, allowing us to watch what we want, when we want, and on the device of our choosing. The challenge: You need to have several apps, along with a computer connected to your TV, and, it's still too complicated – often requiring tech assistance for many just to get it set up. And technology is quickly evolving, which means what you buy today may be obsolete in 18 months, requiring new purchases and additional tech support.
  • Media will continue to converge in 2012. 1) Expect more newspaper reporters to prepare video reports for their newspapers' website and apps while TV and radio reporters prepare text articles for their websites and apps. 2) We will stop defining media by the device on which we used to consume them. We're not taping a TV program anymore because we're not using tape of any kind – we're recording it onto a DVR and watching it on a tablet. And many of us read the daily paper – without the actual paper. We need to find new terms to define what we're doing.
  • E-books will improve their experience by providing new interactive and multimedia content. Already a few innovative publishers are working on combining video and other interactive features into their e-books to provide more value. With the growing capabilities of e-readers like the Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble's Nook, expect e-textbooks to include interactive exercises, and nonfiction e-books to include more video, photos, and audio, while fiction books will come packed with featurettes much the way DVDs are packaged.
  • The press release will not die in 2011. Companies still need press releases to communicate their news. Twitter is good as a kind of short burst of news, but tweets get lost on the timeline – whereas press releases easily can be posted on a corporate newsroom, which is important from an SEO perspective and to demonstrate the company is still acttive. Additionally, reporters, who are overworked (they're now creating multimedia stories on a daily basis), continue to rely on press releases for content. However, organizations must understand that they can't rely on a press release alone. They need to think about new ways they can distribute their news, including infographics, data-and-graphics mashups intended to compellingly present information.
  • Social media will play a bigger role in the marketing mix for B2B companies. More than eight years and nearly 900 million Facebook users later, B2B businesses will embrace social media, following the lead of B2C companies, though they may not focus on Facebook to reach their customers. B2B companies will recognize the need to generate their own multimedia content, and that there are active and engaged business consumers even for niche sectors. We expect that more B2B companies will consider increasing budgets to make engaging their targets through social media, thought leadership and lead generation their top marketing priorities.

The complete list of predictions, including likely media topics, is being rolled out here on the PRBackTalk, blog.birnbachcom.com.

"This year, we're not seeing an overarching technology or social media theme -- as was the case in previous years. The election will be a major theme, one so significant and obvious that we did not feel the need to highlight that as a separate prediction. We think the exploding popularity of tablets, especially the iPad, will continue to push us into a post-PC world, which has tremendous implications for how, when and where we consume media. That's important because it means that communications functions have to develop and distribute content across different platforms and different devices, and they have to understand content designed for a smartphone has to be shorter than content intended to be viewed on a computer," said Norman Birnbach, president, Birnbach Communications, Inc.

Birnbach Communications advises its clients on the type of stories and approaches that have the best chance of capturing the attention of reporters, bloggers, twitterers, customers and other influencers. This list of trends, which the agency tracks and revises throughout the year, is an important element to the roadmap developed each year for each client.

About Birnbach Communications, Inc.
Boston-based Birnbach Communications, an independent PR agency, provides its clients with a portfolio of strategic business communication services, specializing in national media relations, executive visibility, and social media marketing. The agency enables its client base of emerging and mid-size companies to reach customers, investors, venture capital firms and business partners; launch new products and services; establish new product categories and drive market demand. Founded in 2001 with the commitment to combine the best aspects of large-agency experience with small-agency culture and dedication, Birnbach Communications brings senior-level intelligence and attention based on an understanding of business issues – not just PR and social media issues. Birnbach Communications' team provides senior-level PR, social media, marketing and communications experience across a range of industries, including storage, security, unified communications, financial software and services and other technology sectors, healthcare, senior services, consumer, social networking, and nonprofit and education. For more information, please visit www.birnbachcom.com.

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