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A 'Fuller House': How Journalists and PR Pros Can Better Live Under the Same Roof
By: Muck Rack
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So this means I really am turning into Danny Tanner…

In the morning, I teach a strategic communication writing class at a leading school of journalism. After lunch, I head back and teach a broadcast journalism writing class.

I’ve been asked how I can ride both sides of the fence. Some are curious; others are skeptical. I’m a realist.

As much as journalists and strategic communicators (I don’t like saying PR people) claim to come from two different worlds, it’s time to realize we’re all in the same house.

It’s a full house, and with media changing rapidly, it’s getting fuller every day. I appreciate and value the importance of independence, but I also believe there are artificial barriers that keep us apart; so, let’s have a family meeting and learn how to hug things out.

Whatever happened to predictability? The milkman, the paperboy, evening tv.

Journalists and strategic communicators deal with substantial change every single day. It’s one of the reasons our work is so challenging and we are on those most stressful jobs list.

That award isn’t a badge of honor. It’s a problem everyone reading this can fix. Why aren’t journalists and strategic communicators better about communicating with each other? As the great Dave Coulier would say, “Cut it out.“

Accessibility is essential in effective communication. For strategic communicators, that means being there when reporters call. It also means being able to get the right people needed to help a journalist tell their story. Certainly it means offering cell phone numbers and being mindful of reporter deadlines.

Accessibility is a two-way street. How many strategic communicators emailed (with a legitimate pitch) and then called, only to end up in SPAM or voicemail purgatory? To quote an Olsen twin, “How rude.”

Reporters are busy; I get it. But, if reporters want 24/7 access, cursory responses to pitches help. So too do regular office hours to respond to reporter calls.

If a strategic communicator can take the time to read a Cision profile with those times and then call, reporters then know the pitch is custom, not canned.

Open and honest dialogue about real people and real stories. Isn’t that what everyone wants? There is a balance between independence and collaboration. Let’s embrace this.


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About the Author
This article was published by Muck Rack Daily. A link to the original story follows this post. www.muckrack.com
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