Posts Categorized: Technology Tools

Eight life lessons learned from a juggler

I love being a public relations consultant for the past few decades, and have enjoyed representing New England's largest and longest-running Renaissance Faire for the past five. Running your own PR firm can be fascinating, and we are required to keep all the “balls in the air” at all times. Just like a good juggler at the Faire, I’ve uncovered eight life lessons gleaned from observing master performers, including my favorite: the “grand finale” is a simple compilation of many smaller achievements. Whether you are striking out pitching a story or creating a clever idea, or just need extra motivation for a personal goal, here are tips to keep our mind and energy focused on steps needed to achieve our goals.

1. Timing is everything. E ... ⇢ read more

Five tips for creating an online newsroom

According to a recent survey, more than 50 percent of journalists visit online newsroom sections of organizations’ websites at least once a week. What are they looking to find in the online newsroom? More than news releases. The online newsroom should serve as an organization’s online filing cabinet with news releases, company information and digital assets readily available, including:
  • news releases;
  • visual assets like photographs (including key leaders’ headshots in print-quality resolutions) and video;
  • succinct information about products and services;
  • biographies of key executives;
  • media contacts, including cell phone numbers;
  • financial statements.
Smart PR professionals are now thinking about online newsrooms as a full section of a website, rather than just a single newsroom page.

Five tips to take your client’s online newsroom to the next level:

1) Filters: ... ⇢ read more

Be Here Now…

My wife, a human resources executive, recently attended a half-day professional development program and was so stunned by the behavior of the other participants that she was nearly (not quite totally) speechless when I asked her about how it went. “The program content was fine,” she said. “But I couldn’t believe the other ‘so-called professionals’ – they were anything but… Instead of using the time to learn, network and develop relationships with other HR professionals, virtually all of the other participants at my table had, and kept, their faces and their attention buried in their smart phones the entire time.” Prior to and during program breaks, every person at her table was focused on whatever was happening online via their phone – not at all on the other people right in front of them. “It struck me as highly unprofessional.” As public relations professionals, there are times where we need to be connected to our offices, our collea ... ⇢ read more

Communications Tips for Satisfied Clients

By Jennifer Evans, Principal of The CKP Group in Houston, Texas. My spouse and I work in different environments. He leads a technical team in the oil and gas industry. I spend my time at The CKP Group building robust communications efforts for clients. Still, we frequently “talk shop” and share best practices. There are two things we both detest: rudderless meetings and ineffective or missing measurement. Meetings that matter Meetings should be meaningful and strategic. Most meeting appointments originate from either an information gap or a problem that needs to be solved. Face time is key to relationship management whether it comes through video calls or traditional settings, and non-verbal cues foster connection. This is not an “older generation” preference. I recently surveyed communications colleagues and peers and found there was an overwhelming desire from ... ⇢ read more

PRConsultants Group Turns it Up in Albuquerque

2016 conference logo By Amy Kossoff Smith, President Write Ideas, Inc., and Editor/Founder of PRCG Powerlines When you put a group of premier public relations experts in a room for three days, you never know what magic will happen.  And this year's conference was no exception.  Our theme, "Turn it Up," had multiple applications, including a colorful conversation of best/first concerts, and action-packed sessions on branding, social media, PR strategy, and lots more.  The theme, how do we work together to "Turn it Up" for our clients, our individual firms, and most importantly, the incredible collective experience of PRConsultants Group, ... ⇢ read more

Character development: establish your brand voice on social media

Whether you tweet, Facebook post, Instagram, Snapchat or shoot Vine videos for yourself or a client, every social media moment matters. Just as the goal of any actor is to be able to tell a story through a character, your brand needs warmth and personification to really resonate and engage. brands must become architectsof community.broke don't fix it.Not all brands are wild and wacky, but there are plenty of examples of conservative brands who exploded on social in 2015 once they found their “voice”. Check out the Twitter feeds of @oldspice, @tacobell, @MyCascade, @lushcosmetics, @jetblue, @PopChips, @Intel and the SM conference favorite, @Oreo (check out #OreoHorrorStories). It’ ... ⇢ read more

Generational Faux Pas

Generational Faux Pas by Heidi Langer, Langer Marketing & Communications LLC Nothing screams Baby Boomer more than a double space after a period. Really? Oops, just double spaced after the period! Hard to teach an old dog new tricks. Yes, I’m a Baby Boomer. Actually straddling the fence with Baby Boomers on one side and Generation X on the other. If I fell off the fence, I’d likely fall toward the Baby Boomers as I feel more like them in more ways than I care to share, especially when it comes to typing and spaces. I learned to type in my high school “stenography class” which is the same place I learned to read and write shorthand, take dictation and remember about 8-10 sentences at a time before I had to write them down in shorthand. Remember shorthand? Anyone over about 45 should remember it. I still use it today. Comes in handy when I have to take notes really fast. An invaluable skill I say. But both the double space after a period and the sho ... ⇢ read more

PRCG Conference Roundup 2015: Dallas, Texas

2015 conference logo DallasBy Amy Kossoff Smith, Write Ideas, Inc., and Founder/Editor PRCG Powerlines Boots and lots of brainstorming were on the ground in Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, this year for the PRConsultants Group Annual Conference. More than 40 of the network’s markets attended for professional development, networking, and of course, some great Tex-Mex food. Themed, “Not the same old bull,” there was a healthy dose of humor and Southwestern fun as we held our annual crash course in PR education together. Here are highlights from this year’s conference:
  • Day One, after a team brainstorm (get ready to be wo ... ⇢ read more

Social Media: Who? What? When? Where? Why?

sharon kreher 2014 question mark for blog By Sharon Kreher, Partner, teamworksPR When the social media age first dawned (remember Friendster and MySpace?), it seemed like a curiosity. But then Facebook took off. And Twitter. And suddenly, businesses realized that they needed to be visible on social media platforms or be left out of millions of daily conversations. That precipitated a mad rush into social media. Clients felt they needed to be on Facebook and they’d better be tweeting. Content was usually an afterthought: recycled news releases and repurposed website copy. What was said took a back seat to saying “something, anything,” so as not to be left out of this major ma ... ⇢ read more

PRConsultants Group Made Some Magic in Orlando

PRCG conference logo  jpeg file final By Amy Kossoff Smith, President, Write Ideas, Inc. and Founder/Editor of PRCG Powerlines, @WriteIdeasPR When 40 public relations consultants get together, there’s bound to be some magic sparks.  This year’s 11th Annual  PRConsultants Group Conference in Orlando, Florida, was a great example of long-time peers collaborating on the latest in strategy, technology, valuation, community service, and creativity in the field of PR.  Created this year by a fabulous duo, Susan Hamburg and ⇢ read more

Digital storytelling: shift from selling to compelling

Ever since man gathered around the fire and scratched cave wall drawings, stories unite, educate and inspire us. Storytelling is a PR person's best device for sharing a message... and in the digital age, we tell stories weaving text, sound, video, photos, data, and emotion.

As public relations professionals, we know people consume messages and use media differently than in the past. In order to tell our clients' stories in a more compelling way, we must shift our narrative away from selling (the press release) and toward more visually interesting, shareable digital content. By expanding beyond the written word, the standard press release, we can help our clients communicate in ways that are more memorable and actionable than ever before... a picture is worth a thousand words, after all. For great examples of digital storytelling, visit the ⇢ read more