Nick Westergaard

By Nick Westergaard on March 20, 2017

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Access, Authenticity & Internal Advocacy with Bruce Kennedy

bruce kennedy on brand

“If you want to be authentic as a brand, you have to be able to make a mistake.” As social media manager for Cision, Bruce Kennedy is on the front lines of the brand’s online conversations. Last week, he was in the front row for our live podcast onstage at SXSW, where we talked about how brands need to be more authentic than ever to stand out today. I couldn’t wait to continue this conversation with Bruce on this week’s episode of the On Brand podcast.

Enjoy This Episode Now

About Bruce Kennedy

Bruce Kennedy is a social media manager at Cision, where he manages Cision’s global brands. Previously, he worked in public relations in tech and entertainment, helping brands from early stage startups to household names like Red Bull, Disney on Ice, Ringling Bros. and Barnum Bailey, Techweek and more. Connect with him on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter.

Episode Highlights

What does brand mean today? “We’re seeing this change — especially with social media. Increasingly the brand is who’s behind the brand.”

Why those photos of your office that you post on social media matter. “More and more today people care about what’s going on behind the scenes of brands.” Authenticity is all about access.

Live video has created a new branded content ecosystem. “For example, that Red Bull jump would be so much more today.” You’d have live video before and after and lots of content leading up to the main event.

How can smaller brands take advantage of some of the amazing things big brands are doing? We chatted about Disney’s Jungle Book marketing. Specifically, a campaign using 360-video to showcase the digital King Louie character, voiced by Christopher Walken. “You may not have King Louie and Christopher Walken but maybe you can do a 360-video in an interesting place. Or with an interesting person.”

What brand has made Bruce smile recently? Wendy’s! Bruce shared how their recent candid yet authentic Twitter exchanges have helped the brand stand out — both in the news and in the analytics.

To learn more about Bruce, check out the Cision blog, where he is a regular contributor. In fact, he wrote a great recap of our SXSW episode just this past week.

As We Wrap …

Before we go, I want to flip the microphone around to our community …
Recently Rachael Sperling gave us a shout on Twitter for our live episode from SXSW (where Bruce was in the audience and asked a question). Thanks for listening, Rachel!

Did you hear something you liked on this episode or another? Do you have a question you’d like our guests to answer? Let me know on Twitter using the hashtag #OnBrandPodcast and you may just hear your thoughts here on the show.

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Until next week, I’ll see you on the Internet!




Nick Westergaard
Email Brand Driven Digital

is a strategist, speaker, educator, and author of Get Scrappy: Smarter Digital Marketing for Businesses Big and Small. He is the Chief Brand Strategist at Brand Driven Digital, where he helps build better brands online. He also teaches at the University of Iowa and is host of the On Brand podcast. More about Nick.


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