15:55 PM

Some of my Top-Ten people in PR/marketing/communications for 2005

I think I can get away with at least one more top ten people list. And again, these are just some of the many top-ten people who came onto my radar screen in 2005. And they are not presented in any order of importance.

-All the junior staff at the big PR agencies who jumped into blogging while their bosses were preoccupied with trying to understand blogging. It is people such as Blake Barbera and Sarah Bresee, and many other young bloggers that I met in 2005. Jump in--figure it out later, is the motto for bloggers :-)

-Mike Manuel at Voce Communications, continues to be one of the leading brands with his Media Guerrilla blog. And yes, he has a photo of himself that is the envy of ALL bloggers--don't ever change it Mike. (And if you do, can I have it?) Also, the rest of the Voce team isn't too dang bad either, with Richard Cline, Dave Black, and Matthew Podboy (a name from the future :-).

-Giovanni Rodriguez and his team at Eastwick Communications. They like and use wikis in a big way, and it helps that Socialtext, the corporate wiki company is a client. Some innovative thinking is coming out of Eastwick and the G-man is behind some of it.

-Michael Arrington of TechCrunch, writes one of the top blog sites covering Web 2.0 companies.

This is an excellent example of the mashed up future of tech marketing/communications/journalism. Michael is a lawyer, a former dotcom executive, and VC, living in Atherton, Silicon Valley's #1 address. He does a fantastic job profiling new companies, and also hosting parties for them at his home which are showcases for the companies he writes about. [I'd get crucified if I did that...]

-Ross Mayfield CEO of SocialText. Ross is one of those natural journalist bloggers and he is an excellent example of a new role for CEOs. I call it Chief Excitement Officer--not that Ross is a pompon waving cheerleader--but it is to tell your company's story in a compelling way and be constantly involved in your customer communities. We used to call them evangelists . . . or maybe that's what the "E" in CEO should stand for?

-Renee Blodgett of Blodgett Communications is most probably the best known woman blogger in tech today with her blog Down the Avenue. And she was one of the first of the A-list bloggers. And yet Renee is so very old-school in the way she runs her PR business. I'm always wondering why...

-Ron Piovesan--Cisco Systems. Ron has worked in the large PR agencies. He helped build the very innovative news@cisco news and features editorial service. This employs regular journalists and publishes an online magazine about Cisco. It gets more hits than some prominent trade and financial newspapers. Ron works with Dan Scheinman, head of corporate PR and Mergers and Acquisitions. Now that's a unique corporate position.

-Rok Hrastnik , is just 24 but already on a trajectory that will shoot him out of this solar system. He is humble, serious, and a serious student of marketing. He works as a consultant for Studio Moderna in Slovenia and is one of the top experts in RSS marketing.

-Andy Plesser of Plesser Holland Associates; the New York PR firm that specializes in representing major media companies. You can imagine how the devastation in the media sector affected Andy, and his business partner Kent Holland and colleagues. But Andy is one of those consummate professionals and he has managed to reinvent his firm through conferences, and take-on the new media challenge through time-honored ways: steady and persistent relationship building. He recently added Salon to his list of clients.

-Jen McClure and colleague Elizabeth Albrycht are among the leaders of the new communications movement--the PR equivalent to the new media movement. I met them in early January at their New Communications Conference--and it was a blast. I'm proud to be a founding fellow of the Society of New Communications Research think tank that Jen has organized, although I feel guilty because I have done very little so far. The think tank has benefited both their PR businesses, which is the way things should be done today--demonstrate thought leadership and the business will follow.