The MCC team took part in a Barbeque at Southampton Science Park yesterday, dodging the showers that have become a trademark of the UK Summer 2012. The Barbeque was a great excuse for us to work with other businesses and individuals that are based on site to help organise and publicise something that lets neighbouring companies meet up socially and have some fun. Working with other businesses is something that is an everyday feature for most organisations and collaboration between companies can get great things done, as our fun (albeit soggy) time yesterday proved! For our clients, collaboration with business partners can be a great bit of PR and Marketing – something the press will often see as a good story of economic success. Naturally getting the PR right and fair can sometimes be a challenge, but if businesses can work together there is no reason why both can’t benefit from the (often sizable) publicity. We always suggest to our clients that we make as big a song and dance about a partnership as possible as it’s the kind of business activity story that helps to trump the somewhat protracted view of the wider economic stagnation that still seems to dominate many headlines.
With the downtime of its systems this week, UK mobile phone network provider O2 has had its fair share of criticisms and bad publicity from the upheaval. Once again social networks, and in particular Twitter, were buzzing with comments from angry customers but we were interested to see that O2’s Twitter team got to work replying, as reported in the New Statesman. The mixture of knowing, sincere and playfully sarcastic responses may not have put the problems right but they showed a surprisingly human angle to the O2 Twitter comms team - which is no bad thing when there is a corporate crisis going on. Of course had there been deaths involved I’m sure it would have been very different, but it was a nice change of tone from the usual bland statements.
Whilst we work in a high-tech sector, the team at MCC are always pleased to indulge in a little nostalgia and The Independent has run a story today about the resurgence in the popularity of old-school photo booths. Often viewed as a necessity for passport photos, photo booths were always a favourite with younger people looking to take a few cheeky photos of themselves (and maybe their first love) easily and cheaply. It would seem that generation X (and maybe even Generation Y) is taking this retro idea to its heart again, making the most of doing whatever daft thing you want behind the curtain! It would seem most systems are now inevitably digital but you have to hope they retain the ‘lovely’ orange nylon curtain and outside styling of endless 1970s mugshots that certainly live in my memory of the one in our local Gateway supermarket (if you’re under 30 ask your parents about that one!)