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
With all the many channels in which people communicate, nonprofit organizations need to find ways to outreach to both current and potential audiences. Social media is segmented, based on each platform’s users, so nonprofits need a strategy to outreach, share and “rally the troops” to effectively break through the myriad of messaging out there. Three such groups, ambassadors, avengers and advocates, can be an instrumental part of organization’s comprehensive communication plan.
Ambassadors are folks who are tied into your community. They tend to be influencers who are willing and able to help spread the word about your organization at events and ... ⇢ read more
For companies like Pepsi and United, these past few weeks have not been “friendly” after long hours trying to battle crises within their respective organizations.
Every time a crisis hits major corporations, such as these, public relations professionals are left scratching their heads wondering who is in charge and why the PR people “didn’t have a seat at the table?”…from the beginning.
PR professionals are oftentimes called in after the crisis hits versus having a seat at the table during the initial planning and strategizing phases.
It’s clear that in the case of Pepsi, the advertising firm created what they thought was a home run ad for the soft drink maker: Model Kendall Jenner handing a police officer a Pepsi during a protest rally. However, my guess is that no one ran the ad by their Communications Director or possibly their outside public relations counsel because if they did, I wou ... ⇢ read more
As a child, my mom diligently worked with me to read books every week. From stories of emperors with no clothes to giants in the sky, one of my favorites was the story of “The Three Little Pigs.” To this day, I am not sure why that story resonated with me, although I am sure it had something to do with the fact my mom always made funny voices for the pigs and the wolf. The moral of the story rings true, especially in Oklahoma; better to work hard and be prepared than to be ill-prepared.
During the spring months, we experience a litany of weather. High winds, thunderstorms and of course tornadoes, all of which can all be devastating to property and life-threatening to those unprepared. Are your clients prepared for Mother Nature's onslaught? Use these five tips to build the foundation of any great crisis communications plan:
It’s time to vote! Perhaps you ran to the polls this morning to help the candidate you love become our next president. Or, maybe your vote just celebrates your right to do so and the end of a very long ad season. Either way, there’s no denying the Trump/Clinton race has been particularly intense. Dominated by unprecedented levels of mudslinging and scandals—the effect may last longer than Election Day.
A sky-high level of controversy is characteristic of this year's election. But, it begs a question about whether Trump and Clinton are that much more controversy worthy than candidates in the past. Could this level of scrutiny be just a natural outcome of running for office in the Digital Age?
Trump and Clinton have both had their turns wiping egg off their faces. Trump has been skewered for such things as his tax returns, ⇢ read more
In 2016 we're all potential TV stars thanks to the accessibility of livestream video. Now we have our very own channels - on Periscope, YouTube and Facebook Live - where we can find people waxing on about pretty much anything.
Of course only .33 percent of videos ever go viral and get over a million views. And fewer than half of YouTube videos ever reach 500. But there's always an outlier, like a hysterically excited Candace Payne unboxing a Chewbacca Mask on Facebook Live, that breaks the rules and earns 160 million views.
What ... ⇢ read more
Uber and Lyft just lost an $8.6 million game of public affairs.
In a case billed as Silicon Valley money versus Texas public servants, the two giant rideshare companies have suspended service in Austin after voters turned down Proposition 1 on Saturday, bringing to a stunning conclusion the most expensive campaign in the city’s history.
So, why did Proposition 1 fail? Lyft and Uber totally botched the campaign.
The rideshare companies used bullying tactic ... ⇢ read more
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
I love teachers. Anyone who follows me on Facebook knows my daughter teaches music. She, and most of her colleagues do a great job.
But this is a PR Blog, and hence, it is with a heavy heart I read this article in the Omaha World-Herald. So, I’m taking this opportunity to remind my clients, my colleagues and my followers it is better to confess to the crime (mistake, if you prefer) than to cover it up.
I’ll never forget the wise words of a Sunday school teacher and High School counselor, who told us, “It is okay to say you are wrong.” These teachers and the paraprofessionals have learned a lesson the hard way. But we ALL can learn from their mistake. Just think what damage they’ve done to their profession and their district. Trust is s ... ⇢ read more
By Brendy Barr, Brendy Barr Communications
So it’s my turn to write a blog post for PRCG Powerlines and I’m having an attack of writer’s block. Know the feeling?
It’s time to turn to my Top 10 sources for content inspiration. Perhaps one of them is your favorite muse?
1. Turn on CNN, or FOX News or any national news channel. See what stories are breaking relevant to your industry that you can offer an opinion about.
2. Subscribe to e-newsletters and RSS feeds distributed by industry associations and peruse them for content that interests you. Re-post content with a brief introduction of why it amuses you. Be sure to credit your ... ⇢ read more
By Ann Bouchard, President, Bouchard Communications Group/Matrix Manager
There is no question that marketing, advertising and public relations are all disciplines that help businesses grow. Yet so much has changed in the past decade, that communications professionals (who now have more options and strategic directions to choose from than ever before), are feeling overwhelmed and under informed.
Gone are the days when businesses created one message and broadcasted it to the widest audience possible, in hopes of achieving a 1-3% response rate. Today, everything boils down to reaching the right audience, with the right message, at the right time and through the right medium.
The average consumer is exposed to over 3,000 advertising messages per day, and less than 3% of those messages resonate. And when social media impressions are factored in, th ... ⇢ read more
- Have a backpack with several printed copies of your crisis communications plan, contact numbers for essential employees and external media conta ... ⇢ read more