Wednesday, May 4, 2011

PIFA Created an Army of Bloggers

An army of bloggers took the city by storm to promote PIFA
Photo Credit , George Widman    
How do you get the word out about 135 events over a three-week time period? Create an army of bloggers. That’s what Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA) did.

PIFA is inspired by the Kimmel Center and they incorporated partnerships and collaborations with hundreds of artists, organizations and individuals from around the globe. It was nearly impossible to ignore the presence that the inaugural PIFA had in our city recently (4/7/11-5/1/11). No, I am not referring to the giant Ferris wheel or aerial dancers on Broad Street last Saturday for the PIFA Street Fair, I am referring to the non-stop social media presence that PIFA had on Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and approximately 30 blogs!

Nina Zucker Associates, local boutique public relations firm, represents PIFA and worked closely with Dafni Comerota of the Kimmel Center on the PIFA campaign.They were given the challenge of reaching a broad audience to include a younger crowd that doesn’t typically get involved in the arts and cultural community.

“Out of that challenge, we tapped Ed Salvato, a journalist and social media specialist who was brought on board to oversee social media strategy and create the campaign. As a result, the blogger army was born,” Nina Zucker, President of Nina Zucker Associates and member of PPRA’s Hall of Fame, said.

Reaching a broad diverse audience, many types of bloggers were included: mommy bloggers such as Frugal Philly Mom, arts bloggers, gossip bloggers such as Philly Chit Chat, as well as other local Philadelphia popular blogs including my own independent blog, Always a Brunette. Bloggers from Canada, France and the UK were also part of PIFA’s army of bloggers.

PIFA created its own Twitter handle, Facebook page and YouTube channel so that the bloggers could post their links onto the different platforms. The hashtag #PIFAphilly was trending on Twitter several times prior to the festival as well as during the festival.

PIFA’s army of bloggers certainly helped draw in the crowds with over 100,000 people visiting the Kimmel Center Plaza for the Eiffel Tower light shows two times each night and 150,000 attendees to the Street Fair on Broad Street.

The tremendous success, “Was a result of the fact that we merged traditional media and PR/marketing tactics with new and social media efforts,” said Zucker.

When Salvato was asked if he would include an army of blogger again if he had the opportunity to work with PIFA in the future, he simply answered, “Absolutely.”

This blog post was written by Nina Scimenes. She has been an active PPRA member since 2005 and is currently a part of the Hall of Fame Luncheon committee. After graduating from Cabrini College with a Communications degree in 2006 Nina went on to do PR at various organizations and now she is the temporary Marketing Manager of Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania. This year Nina has also been a PR Consultant for Rock to the Future, a local non-profit that is benefiting from pro-bono PR from PPRA members. When she is not immersed in PR work she is blogging on her new blog, Always a Brunette, and training for her next triathlon. Last year she completed her first triathlon in Philadelphia and is brave enough to go back from more including a swim in the Schuylkill River.


  1. Thanks for including me in this article. PIFA was fun to cover. I really hope they can fulfill Leonore Anneberg's dream of creating it on an ongoing basis even every couple years like the Olympics.

  2. You're welcome HughE! It was so exciting to be a part of something this spectacular. I'm looking forward to what the future has in store for the next PIFA.

  3. You guys rocked! I really appreciated reading your articles! I hope PIFA becomes an annual event!

  4. Thanks so much for including me. Everyone did a great job and I think PIFA was a huge success!


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