Thursday, October 21, 2010

Social Rage - Part 3 - The Final Line

Social Media gone Viral (image: onlinemarketingbite)
After a few weeks of digressing from the point, its time to close this chapter and officially publish my latest thoughts into the abyss of the internet. In Social Rage Part 1 and Social Rage Part 2, I covered the phenomenon that is Social Media. In this I would like to introduce a recently established form of marketing known as TTL and then my own concoction that is OTL (if it hasn’t been published elsewhere already).

We've touched on various features of marketing and the whole fuss that is social media. With this has brought about the birth of a new form of marketing which uses blogging (traditional and micro) as a core feature. We call it Digital Marketing and this includes everything from online campaigns to social media marketing and viral content (or digital wildfire as I like to call it) to help fuse everything together.

Your complete array of marketing techniques converged into simple lingo are:

ATL - Above the line: Includes TV, Print, etc. Techniques that don’t require direct contact with consumers
BTL - Below the line: Includes activations & events - direct contact with the target audience on the ground, engaging real people in real ways (great bottom line conversion for companies active with social media)
TTL - Through the line: Recently used in the Middle East by Sharp, an amalgamation of ATL and BTL without the big spend of the former, but a more concerted use of the latter.
OTL - On the line / or Online: The convergence of all online mediums combined with BTL activities to tie it all together. More of a fusion between TTL and BTL really because of its ability to directly target a specific audience and engage them at the same time.

We keep talking about 'the line' but where is this line? Is it up, is it down, left or right? It seems to bring us to the same logic that our good friend and very well-known comedian, Jerry Seinfeld who once asked a very important question: "What's the deal with corn nuts!? Is it a corn or is it a nut?" It’s not really the question that we’re focusing on, rather it’s the action or outcome & use of such a technique. Maybe stepping back and looking at the question of which is which and why it is the way it is.

No one really had the answer to that one, not one that stuck the way the question did. But the point is that with all the lingo flying everywhere, how is it that we gauge the importance of communication over different mediums without actually breaking them down into minute details to look at the core ingredients and work backward by rebuilding them.

Maybe OTL marketing is the line we have been talking about because it does incorporate features of both ATL and BTL, but with the best of both and the worst of none. It's low cost, direct targeting, efficient with amazing metrics available for campaign and activity tracking.

With the various techniques, we are better equipped to become more specific with our communication so that the right message is delivered to the right consumer at the right time. You get these three ‘r’s’ down, you got yourself an effective communication. Albeit, marketing isn’t always this cut and dry, there are the fundamentals that are always required in order to make sure any risk you might take on is mitigated with a core strategy in place.

With social media, anyone can be a marketing specialist. This is an evolution of how blogging allowed just about anyone to become a published author, a citizen journalist and essentially the most effective means of creating chatter about any topic of interest in a shorter span of time. With the mass of communication available and tools such as Facebook, twitter, foursquare, YouTube et al gaining popularity with higher adoption rates on a daily basis, the convergence of social media seems to be the next, most logical step of this evolutionary phenomenon.

The question I want to leave you all with is, should we revisit our use of the various techniques and begin to explore a process of re-prioritizing them on an academic level so as to infuse the newer techniques to the future generations of marketeers? And what role do PR (or PR 2.0) professionals play in the progression of these changes?

Bon Appétit

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Oh, baby! Justin Bieber is a PR genius (PR Junkie)

[Disclaimer: Extracted from Original article at PR Junkie]

Sixteen-year-old heartthrob Justin Bieber was thrown out of a laser tag center Friday night after a 12-year-old complained that Bieber hit him. Here's how the Canadian press first reported this incident:
On Sunday, the CBC--Canada's preeminent news source--said the singer "got into some trouble." The Vancouver Sun headline read, "Justin Bieber linked to alleged laser-tag assault." The Globe and Mail coverage closely reflected that from the Sun.
Could be bad news for Bieber, considering 12-years-old is about his prime fan base. So what's any good pop machine to do? Spin it, baby.
Less than 24 hours after news organizations reported that Bieber did the beating, stories are pouring in indicating the pop star was the result of bullying and he merely stood up for himself. Not only was it bullying, but apparently the 12-year-old called Bieber a gay slur (the f-word, but not the f-word)--and, of course, gay bullying is the cause du jour this season.

Taking care while driving in the 3rd world

Just got this in an email from a loved one and for once I felt here is a forward I can believe and even share with the world:
This is happening now! Sad, especially if you are inclined to 'help' people...
While driving on a rural end of the roadway on Thursday morning, I saw an infant car seat on the side of the road with a blanket draped over it.  For whatever reason, I did not stop, even though I had all kinds of thoughts running through my head.  But when I got to my destination, I called the Police and they were going to check it out. This is what the Police advised even before they went out there to check...."There are several things to be aware of ... gangs and thieves are now plotting different ways to get a person (mostly women) to stop their vehicle and get out of the car. There is a gang initiation reported by the local Police where gangs are placing a car seat by the road...with a fake baby in it...waiting for a woman, of course, to stop and check on the abandoned baby since they are more likely than men. Note that the location of this car seat is usually beside the woods or a grassy (field) area and the victim -- woman -- will be dragged into the woods, beaten and usually left for dead.  If it's a man, they're usually beaten and robbed and maybe left for dead, too.
Do not stop for any reason. Call your local authorities [15 in Pakistan] and report what you saw, but don't even slow down. If you are driving at night and eggs are thrown at your windscreen, do not stop to check the car, do not operate the wiper and do not spray any water because eggs mixed with water become milky and block your vision up to 92.5%, and you are then forced to stop beside the road and become a victim of these criminals. This is a new technique used by gangs, so please inform your friends
and relatives.
These are desperate times and these are unsavory individuals who will take desperate measures to get what they want. Please talk to your loved ones about this new tactic being used. Please be safe. 
This is true that theses are difficult times and unfavorable for better security, especially in a country such as Pakistan where there is civil unrest, political instability, masses of corruption and not to mention Terrorism concerns. We have become so used to living in these conditions that for a local resident things 'could always be worse' - but the fact is that we haven't really known them to be much better.

A good international campaign + improved tourism facilities and a very strong Public Relations team could make an enormous difference to the image that bears the crescent moon and star on green and white.

Question is...when we hit rock bottom, will we notice?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Urdu Version of Flight of the Falcon - 'Shaheen ki Parwaaz' (OUT NOW)

Now available in English and Urdu translation

"Flight of the Falcon" | "Shaheen Ki Parwaz"

Did Ayub Khan Chicken out in Battle for Kohima and sacked by Gen. Reese, nom de plume, Pocket Nepolian?

Was AQ Khan ever a nuclear scientist or only a Metallurgist? 

Did you know the story of $10mn donation by AQ Khan from a swiss bank to obtain Chair of Academy of Sciences?

Also find the real story behind the T-33 high-jack by Bengali Flt. Lt. Matih-ur-Rehman in 1971

Read these & More true facts in the Third Edition of 'Flight of the Falcon'
Bestseller by Vanguard

Visit for more...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Ryan Vanderbeck - DJ and Friend

He's a really good DJ, I swear!
It's with the saddest tears that I sit here thinking about where to start writing. 

Ryan (or RyRy as I called him to tease), was the kind of friend that, for even those who don't believe, fate entwines your life with. He was the kind of friend who you would meet at least once in your life, but remember him always for the person he was
  • Devoted
  • True
  • Passionate
  • Talented

I just want to share a brief story about our friendship and what it meant to me.

- True Story - 
Step 1 - Assess Workload
About 230 in the morning on a weeknight (not sure what day), we are sitting in his room in Vedder Hall (home for my Junior year) and listening to some new beats he is thinking about mixing into a set. He was always very experimental and used a variety of electronic genres to come up with the perfect tracks, or elixir as we called it. He was never sure about anything in his life and girls were just not on the priority list...odd considering we went to one of the biggest party schools in the US.

Anyway, he's really into this new project of his and even though we both have an 8am class the next morning, this was just another night we just said F**K it, life's too short and you absolutely have to think about how much happiness you need to take from it. Every second counted and so we spent most of it awake, pondering over how electronic music is more than just music; it's a faith, a map, a direction, a way of life for some, but most importantly it is a bringer of peace. You never hear about fights at a rave the way you do at a rock concert or the likes. We'd spend hours thinking about all the reasons to justify our totally truant behavior, even though we knew come 8am, we would be cursing each other.

So this night, the one of many that I remember vividly, I ran out of cigarettes and being chained to the nic, I couldn't not have one. It was probably -10 that night and the snow earlier that night was quite heavy. So heavy that even though he offered to drive me to the gas station to get smokes, we knew that we'd first be digging a car out of some serious snowage. I took my camera out because I knew this is not something to be forgotten.

Step 2 - Curse Foreign Friend
I go outside with RyRy and his car is parked somewhere between a 6 foot and an 8 foot mound of snow. His was the 5 footer cause it wasn't an SUV. His infamous Audi 100 - the car that influenced my passion for german engineering and also why I went on to buy a lemon A4. We spent about 1.5-2 hours trying to dig his car out and it just wasn't happening, so Ryan comes up with a crazy idea to walk over to a common friends place and steal his car. This night did not end well, but I got my smokes from someone while en route back to our dorm after being shamed by a locked door.

We spent about 3 and a half hours trying to find a cigarette cause I just had to have one and Ryan stuck by me on my quest the whole time. Just my kind of friend.

You rest in peace my brother, you will be remembered, missed and revered for your vision to make the world a calmer place.

For those who wish to continue reading, here's a conversation we shared over email after I returned to Pakistan from the US in 2004/5 (parts edited for privacy):

 ryan vanderbeck
 to me


how did everything go getting home? whats up with tigger?  its 2:10am and i cant sleep.  i looked to see if you updated your blog but i guess your still unwraveling from all the travel n such.  anyhow i hope your settling in well.  keep me posted. -Ryan
- Show quoted text -

Zohare Haider
 to ryan


hey bro,

i got back this mornng at 6 am. my flight got delayd in manchester for 7 f****g hours cause of some technical problem. im finally here and i am so relieved. i am so exhausted though and am waiting until about 10 pm tonight to turn in and get some rest. i havent yet been able to catch up on sleep. i will update my blog later when i get a chance. Anyway, hope everything is well withyou man. keep me posted. peace

- Show quoted text -
-- ~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Zohare S. Haider BA Economics    

ryan vanderbeck
to me


i'm glad you got home okay.  what have you been doing since being back home?  i beat halo 2 last night, it was easy lol.  just a long game to get through.  you find out that there are 7 rings lol.  i called brock tonight and he was at the bull run with ali and khaled.  lucky him!  i was in nyc on tuesday and shadowed some account executives.  found out they are not hiring until next year but two ladies are  going to be fowarding my resume to people they know at other firms.

things could be better, i found out that (edited) has a tumor in (edited).  but they dont know if its malignent or not yet?  he'll have to have surgery to remove the growth.  so i've been really upset about that.  makes me wonder what the hell will happen to (edited) if things dont get better for his health (edited). ahhh just have to think positive and not get too worried about it.

let me know how tigger is too! poor kitty!

okie dokie, time to jump on my bed and crash.  wish u were still here man.  i'm really glad we had a chance to spend so much time together before u left for home.  having good times  again is what i look forward to!  night Z

Zohare Haider
 to ryan


hey buddy, ur crazy man. im glad u finished it. get yourself sorted out bro. i am glad you got the chance to shadow the execs, it usually is very helpful to see a day in the life of... just keep chugging man. i think i might have landed a job with a huge bank here called standard chartered, it was the first bank in the world to go international, it is british. anyway had an interview yesterday and i think it went well.

i am terribly sorry to hear about (edited) health, he is a trooper so even if he had a (edited), he would keep on chuggin and that is the example you should live your life by. I will pray that it turns out to be benign, and i am sure it will be.

tigger is well. adapting to the pakistani way of life, got him a new litter box yesterday and he is just crazy. i gotta get him some food from the states. i have a friend coming from cali so ill ask him to get it.

Listen, keep your head up and don't look back. You have a long life and you should look forward to it being half has fruitful as (edited), even more if you work for it!

Your friend, Zohare

ryan vanderbeck
 to me


dude, thats awsesome u might be getting a job so soon over there. btw, how is the adjustment going?  i am reading your gupshup now because it helps me keep track of whats going on with you and is quite entertaining lol.  keep writing bro.

i found out that (edited) does have (edited) cancer, so he has to have surgery.  this is pretty early detection, so he'll have a good chance at a 90%+ recovery.  makes me think about life a lot deeper and how valuable every day is with the ones you care about.  also makes me think more about how i take care of myself.  complete paranoia setting in here man lol... u best stop smoking Z lol.  i was gona ask u when you were here if we could promise to keep a promise to each other each (i didnt because i think it was my place to) but i was gona ask u to promise to quite smoking.  now i wonder what you would have asked me to do.  maybe we can still promise each other something. lol

my buddy adrian is coming into yardley tomorrow, flying from paris. we went to lewisburg middle school/highschool together and havent seen him in 4 years.  its gona be exciting.  i just feel weird with keep coming back into lewisburg.  i have to leave and never come back. makes me wanna do another cycling trip to get away and start anew.  i am looking for an adventure, a life changer, but its so hard to throw everything you'eve ever had in front of you away for someting u know nothing about.  i gota get out sometime somwhere, hopefully a job will allow me to do this soon.

how are things with your friends over there.  u corrupting them yet ;-) jk bro lol   what about people over here, u staying in touch?

ok i'm done rambling but would def like to hear back from you soon. be safe and remember to watch out for assholes lol.


ryan vanderbeck
 to me


everything alright back home?  been wondering how your doing....know what i'm sayin........

ez Z ez

Zohare Haider
 to ryan


wattup shindiggity! happy new year and all that jazz. hows the family? you figuring your life out yet bro? hope all is well. i am doing ok, looking for jobs and farming to keep myself occupied. mad luv dawg. your paki brother, zohare
- Show quoted text -

Zohare S. Haider B.A. Economics & International Relations      ----------

ryan vanderbeck
 to me


i  love you too Zohare!  your my brother i never had.  i really glad your with your family.  maybe one day when we are older we can start a fraternity on market street like oldschool hahahaha.  and get all the old gang back.  i'm going to come visit you in pakistan someday.

i'm really hammering out the job thing right now.  i'm dead serious about getting a 40k a year job because i want to live life man.  not be holding back on my parents wings forever.  so i've been sending out so many resumes its not even funny.  my dad even pulled out his wallet of business cards with notes on who to send cover letters with resumes too. so hopefully something will pan out.

i'm still doing techno, that keeps me young.  it will do for you too if you dont get rid of all your mp3s.  haha.  i am keeping your "memories" in a safe place, and dont worry i am not going to go through them in case you wondered about that.  i respect your privacy.  farming huh!  man you know how much i loved talking about the wilderness and outskirts of bucknell n settling in a small place and farming haha.  gosh, your living my dream bro.  well part of it atleast hehe!  hows the girl situation.  what is day to day life like.  have you seen an impact at all in society about the news of the tsunami.  here it is bigger news than Bush finally and the f*****g war! oh boy i said 3 words i shouldnt have in this email so i guesss i'm fucked by the secret intelligence groups hahah.

Z you be safe, smart, and focused.  dont slip into comfort zone too long like i have.  you need to keep your ambitions alive and fight for what you really want.  bleed to get what you want man.

ok i'm done ranting.  i miss you and think about you all the time in dreams about you sitting on your chair next door in vedder and i can just wake up and come over and chat or cook or play computer games. those memories dont fade man.  okay, take care.  P.S. i saw brock and Khalid up in lewisburg before christmas, khalid says that joesef really misses tigger.  poor sucka :(  but i'm glad you have him haha.

take care, -Ryan

Zohare Haider
 to ryan


emailed. how is everythig going? i havent had much time to sit and read and respond emails cause internet is kinda slow here so its quite difficult. ill get down to reading your mail soon. mad luv. wish your whole family for the new year from me.

ryan vanderbeck
 to me


ok cool beans.  tell your family i wish them well also!  how is life btw?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Benazir Monument?!

Benazir was a female landmark, first female leader in a Muslim state, Harvard Grad, massive other accomplishments and we are all sad about her death. However, does that grant the government the right to spend tax payer money on a monument that will not churn out free cash for the public, have fountains of fresh drinking water, a hot dog stand or even an LCD TV to at least distract the viewers from the audacity of the govt to approve such ostentatious and unacceptable spending!

Benazir monument plan approved
By Syed Irfan Raza
Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010
ISLAMABAD, Aug 30: The government has approved the Benazir Monument Complex plan that will be constructed through taxpayers’ money at a vast piece of land near Shakarparian.
The construction of the monument will cost Rs400 million while the land provided by the Capital Development Authority (CDA) for the project is said to be worth over Rs500 million, a senior CDA official told Dawn on Monday.

It would be the second monument constructed in the capital city during the last four years. The National Monument in Shakarparian was built on the directives of former President Pervez Musharraf at a cost of over Rs700 million.

The monument complex, which is being financed by the Ministry of Culture, would be completed in two years by the CDA.
The 10-acre-land has been provided for the monument for Rs108 million at the subsidised rate of Rs2,250 per square yard.
Civil engineers say the cost would escalate according to the complex’s proposed design to up to Rs1 billion.
“We have asked the CDA to send us the exact cost of the land so that it would be paid by the Ministry of Culture,” said the secretary culture.
The land located alongside Islamabad Highway between Zero Point and Faizabad was earlier used for holding industrial exhibition, one of the popular annual features in the federal capital that was closed due to security concerns.
“The monument is a small token of love and respect the people of Pakistan have for their great leader Benazir Bhutto,” Prime Minsiter Yousuf Raza Gilani had said at the monument’s ground-breaking ceremony a couple of months back.
A smaller monument would also be built in Rawalpindi’s Liaquat Bagh where Ms Bhutto was assassinated on December 27, 2007.
Prime Minister Gilani had selected two sites for construction of Benazir monuments in Rawalpindi and Islamabad.
It may be noted that already the existing National Monument in Islamabad had led to criticism against former President Pervez Musharraf. The critics were of the view that the amount of Rs700 million spent on the monument could have been spent on a number of uplift projects like opening of schools, hospitals and libraries etc. 

Is this the way we want to spend our money when we already don't have enough for ourselves, let alone help the flood affectees - who have lost everything? I'm pretty sure a statue of anyone, let alone BB is going to bring them any comfort. That is, unless it shoots laser beams at the malaria-ridden mosquitos hounding the now homeless.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

[Event] Silent Candlelight Vigil for Nonviolence


Silent Candlelight Vigil for Nonviolence

Saturday · 8:00pm - 9:30pm

LocationPNCA Auditorium Parking Lot Islamabad

We invite you to join us in a moment of strength and solidarity to stand together and collectively condemn all forms of violence, especially in light of recent events in Sialkot. The purpose is not to target  a particular organization or group of people but to acknowledge  the role each of us as ordinary Pakistanis have failed to play in preventing this degeneration of our society.

Let us take this moment to pledge towards change, towards countering apathy and towards playing a stronger, active role in reconstructing our society and our country. 

We strongly oppose vigilante justice and intolerance and violence and we are committed to bringing about the change that is needed!  

Please assemble at the PNCA parking lot (behind Marriott) at 8pm on Saturday and bring at least one candle. We will walk to Constitution Avenue  and we will stand together in silent protest for one hour. The media will be invited to cover the event.

Friday, August 13, 2010

[PKFlood] Some useful information for those looking to help

Please visit for links to reliable agencies working in the affected areas.

Google launches two very useful tools for assisting with aid work:

Published by NDMA (

1.            FOOD ITEMS

Dried Milk for Children and Families
High Nutrition Biscuits
Food Packets consisting of Tea, Sugar, Milk Powder, Vegetable Oil,  Pulses and Spices
Mineral Water


2.            NON FOOD ITEMS

Water Coolers
Cooking Utensils
Footwear for Children
Mosquito Nets
Bed Spreads
Floor Mattresses


Hand Towels
Tooth Paste
Female Sanitary Pads
Diapers/ Pampers for minors
Washing Powder/Soap

4.            MISC ESSENTIALS

Mosquito Repellents
Prickly Heat Powder
Children Anti Rash Creams
Water Purification Tablets
Candles /Match Boxes


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