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Original articles from Bulldog Reporter.
 
Consumers: Companies Do Not Communicate Well
According to a new study from Twilio, 81 percent of consumers complain that it is difficult to communicate with businesses.

How Fake News Fears Affect Traditional Media Trust
New study of over 250 reporters and editors debunks an emerging myth that the fake news phenomenon is wearing down consumer trust.

Why 'Media Relations' Still Matters
We’re the public relations industry—and we’ve forgotten our purpose: to relate to the public.

How Outreach Can Revive Your Content Marketing Strategy
It is common to hear about many bloggers that have great content but receive no traffic to their sites. Even if you are not trying to build a big business, it is nice seeing your work and ideas appreciated by the masses.

Smart PR Could Have Diminished Uber’s Bad Press
At the beginning of the year, Uber lost more than 200,000 clients in one weekend after the #DeleteUber movement. Since then, the firm has been hit by a stream of never-ending scandals and bad press.

The Secret of Influence: It’s More Personal Than You Think
Despite the mass availability of online information, news, reviews and opinions, and social media, all generations of consumers still prefer conventional face-to-face communication when it comes to seeking purchase advice and recommendations, according to new research from global comms agency Grayling.

AI Ascending: How Artificial Intelligence Will Save Customer Experience
New research from customer care automation platform Linc, in partnership with BrandGarage, addresses the overwhelming emphasis retail execs are placing on automated platforms to improve customer communication, with 87 percent...

Airlines Get a Big Lift From Great Customer Experiences
Airlines that deliver a great customer experience are rewarded over the long-term, by consumers and investors, according to new research from customer experience advisory firm Watermark Consulting, based on its analysis of stock market returns for airlines that have a customer-centric approach vs. those that lag.

The New Influencers: The Power of Employee Social Advocacy
As more and more brands recognize the value of influencer marketing programs, many are not only looking outwards but also inwards to identify game-changing influencers within their organizations who will drive reach and relevance. In fact, 90 percent of brands say they are currently pursuing an employee advocacy program.

Your Best Customers are Calling: How Comms Moves the Needle
The question is more important than ever: How can communications drive sales? New research from call analytics firm Marchex sheds light on the final call-to-action in a buyer’s journey—the one that ultimately yields the positive outcome sought, such as converting a sale.

Getting Involved: Millennial Demand for CEO Activism Surges
Recent research shows pretty clearly that Millennials expect brands and businesses to take sides on cultural and societal issues, and take action to help solve problems. A new report from Weber Shandwick and KRC Research reaffirms this mandate for activism, putting this responsibility squarely on the top brass. Nearly half of Millennials (47 percent) surveyed believe CEOs...

Why TV Is Where Disruptors Go to Grow Big
The Video Advertising Bureau (VAB) recently released a new report, The Market-Changer’s Playbook: Why TV Is Where Disruptors Go To Grow Big, examining the TV advertising spend of 35 startup and tech companies labeled “disruptors”—including Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, or “FAANG stocks.” The report found that the companies’ investment in TV advertising...

Why Do Stores Rule for Back-to-School?
As back-to-school shopping gears up, nearly 9 in 10 (89 percent) of consumers plan to take to shopping centers and malls looking for the latest deals, offerings and experiences related to their school supply purchases, according to new research...

How to Create Engaging, Actionable Content for Your PR Campaign
Using public relations campaigns to boost your online visibility is one of the hottest trends, particularly for local businesses. However, exploiting the full potential of PR for small- and- medium-size businesses is still somewhat of a rarity. One of the most common reasons behind this shortfall is the failure to produce actionable content for successful campaigns. As most businesses continue to rely on age-old content creation techniques...

70% of Americans Wouldn’t Apply to Companies Getting Negative Press
Negative publicity not only damages a company’s brand, but also its ability to recruit talent. According to a new CareerBuilder survey conducted online by Harris Poll, 71 percent of U.S. workers would not apply to a company experiencing negative press. Female workers are especially intolerant of scandalous and unethical behavior...

Why Today’s Loyalty Programs Need a Digital Boost
To help brands and businesses get a better handle on building loyalty, digital benchmarking firm L2 has announced the release of its inaugural Intelligence Report: Loyalty 2017. The study evaluates the successes and pitfalls of loyalty programs for 99 consumer brands across Activewear, Beauty, Big Box...

Customer Relationship Management: Now’s the Time to Build Lifelong Connections
Customer relationship management (CRM) is entering a new era—with an increasing number of purchasing alternatives and lower-than-ever switching costs, customers will abandon businesses in an instant if they fail to meet their heightened expectations...

Consumers Say Brands Must Improve Their Experience—Or Else
Brands beware—regardless of your fine quality products and fair prices, today’s consumer will still drop you like a hot rock if you don’t make their shopping experience memorable, or at least pain-free, new CMO Council research finds.

Authenticity: The New Buzz Word—How to Achieve It
The word “authentic” or “authenticity” as it is often used, is today very popular indeed. Everyone wants to be perceived as authentic. Authenticity is attractive. But curiously enough, nobody can really describe why someone comes across as being authentic. Clearly it must be a combination of personality traits. But what? Futurist David Houle, recently wrote a post...

Massive Prime Day Spurs Speculation: Is This the Amazon Century?
First it sold books. Next it sold toys and electronics. Then it acquired Whole Foods in a $13.7 billion deal. Now it’s on the fast track to dominate just about every other industry. On the heels of another massive Amazon Prime Day, new research from customer experience...

Three Levels of PR Crisis—Depending On Who Knows What
Not all crises are created equally. This post breaks down the types of crises into three levels, based on who knows what—and offers insights on how to handle each. You’re welcome. Company knows, public doesn’t. In many cases, the company knows about a crisis and the public does not. You could argue this is the ideal crisis situation (besides not having a crisis in the first place, of course!).

What PR Can Learn From 2017’s Internet and Tech Trends
Each year, Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers partner Mary Meeker, a true technologist and venture capitalist, releases an Internet Trends report. This report covers everything from healthcare to Chinese and Indian internet to video games, but it also gives us a look at what internet and technology trends are affecting media—specifically marketing, public relations...

Retail Love: Lessons from Amazon in Building Long-Lasting Relationships
Millennials are buying from Amazon at a higher rate than their older or younger generational counterparts—with an astounding 79 percent reporting an Amazon purchase within the past month, according to a new report from Yes Lifecycle Marketing. For its generational consumer behavior report...

In Crisis, Listening is Key—So Set Up a Call Tree
What’s everyone saying about your crisis? Is it really as bad as you thought? Is it worse? It’s important to listen to what the world is saying about your brand during a crisis. It’s likely that you’ll need to address concerns, answer questions and reassure your loyal customers that you’re working hard to right the wrong or fix the problem.

Video is the Most Influential Content Format Across Social Platforms
Video is more exciting than article copy—we know this, but communicators may not realize how that excitement level translates to consumer action. According to new research from influencer marketing platform gen.video and shopper marketing and brand activation agency Geometry Global, a whopping 90 percent...

8 New Twitter Features – You Using Them?
Over the past two years, Twitter has struggled to grow its user base. Some say the once-revolutionary social media platform has been resting on its laurels, remaining stagnant in its offerings. But 2017 has seen an upswing for the social giant both in user...

Consumer PR: What Keeps the Biggest Retailers Big?
The nation’s largest retailers have held onto their top spots by focusing on value and embracing new ways consumers are shopping, according to the annual Top 100 Retailerslist from the National Retail Federation’s STORES Magazine and Kantar Retail.

Hey PR, Are You Prepared for the “C” Word?
It’s one of the most dreaded words in PR—the “C” word. (Crisis… we’re talking about crisis.) It’s been described as “a PR nightmare” and is regularly referred to in ways like, “I would hate to be (insert company name here)’s PR person.” But crisis doesn’t have to end up being a disaster—not if you’re prepared for it.

What AI’s Growth Means for Email Marketing
Business and global markets are always evolving and changing, but the next decade is predicted to see some monumental changes in both the technological landscape and how businesses operate in general. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are founded on the emergence and massive growth of digital information.

Elevating Your Emails with Rich Media
The modern email subscriber likes to “see” rather than “read.” That’s why visual marketing with rich media has gotten so popular nowadays. GIFs, cinemagraphs, and videos are the main rich media elements that can be effectively used in emails, in addition to static images. They not only create a sense of thrill...

News Outlets are Brands Too – Pitch Accordingly
News outlets need to distinguish themselves from their competition. Just like any other brand in any other space, they need to cultivate a unique identity. With outlets trying desperately to stay afloat in this brave new media world, faithfulness to a strong and standout brand is key. In turn, contributors are now more than ever beholden to publishing stories...

7 Commandments for Being Heard as a Woman in PR
Much has been made about the all-male CEO panel from the recent Hall of Femme conference to honor inspiring female leaders from our industry. The panel, which was hosted at the request of industry-leading women to involve men in the movement toward equality in the PR industry, included Richard Edelman, John Brockelman, Tony Wells, and Jim Weiss.

Nine Baby Steps Toward Creating a Family-Friendly Firm
In 2003 I had my first child—and I also had the all-too-common experience of learning that my workplace didn’t have a maternity policy. My boss “generously” offered me 12 weeks of unpaid leave; I could afford to take three. Upon my too quick return to work, I tried pumping in a bathroom stall, which was inconvenient and embarrassing.

The Data Revolution Has Arrived
The communications measurement world has been talking about the “coming data revolution” for years. I’ve got news for y’all. It’s here. I was at the 2017 PRSA Maryland Annual Conference and noticed a breakout session called “Measuring up: Concrete Ways to Show the Real Value of PR, Social and Marketing”.

Why Brands Must Fuse Online and Offline Experiences
Doling out $600 billion annually and poised to inherit $30 trillion from their Baby Boomer parents, Millennials are quickly gaining massive purchase power and influence, according the newly released Millennial Shopping Report from coupon code...

How to Successfully Prevent a PR Crisis
Recently, I discussed how to properly manage a PR crisis amid company controversy for United Airlines and public outrage towards Pepsi. Since then, a handful of brands and spokespeople have joined them in the hot seat. Mr. Met, the famous mascot for the New York Mets, recently flipped the bird to fans which, of course, was captured on video and instantly went viral on social media. As if that wasn’t offensive enough, Kathy Griffin shocked everyone...

Why Consumers Reject Brands by Association
Brands now need to not only closely monitor their own marketing content, but also the messages in the content that appears anywhere close to theirs. Nearly half of all consumers indicate they would rethink purchasing from brands and/or would boycott products if they encountered brand ads alongside digital content that offends them, reveals a new CMO Council study...

Media Trends: Americans Trust Local News More Than National Media
Supply-side TV-ad platform Videa recently revealed the findings of a recent nationwide survey of consumer perspectives on local and national news sources. According to the study, 61 percent of the 1,145 U.S. consumers surveyed indicated that they have some—or a lot of—trust in the information they get from local news...

How to Turn Online Reviews into Powerful PR Tools
Public relations is all about communicating the benefits of your brand to potential customers and the wider public, but one of the most powerful PR tools at your disposal might actually be the public themselves. New research from WebsiteBuilder.org looks at the role user-generated online reviews has on a business’s ability...

Is Live Chat Really Working for Customer Support?
Recent reports show that a majority of companies are failing to meet the basic needs of good customer service, and new research from customer relationship management software firm SuperOffice supports that assertion. Among the findings, the company’s new study reveals that 21 percent of live chat support requests go unanswered.

Generation Z Issues a New Retail-PR Ultimatum
The younger crowd has upended retail PR as we know it, and they’re continuing to do so—more than 90 percent of Generation Z now say that a strong wi-fi signal is important to them and their overall shopping experience, according to a survey...

This Media Outreach Model Helps You “Ditch the Pitch”
Modern day brand communications most often represent a push-based model, in which marketers do everything they can to get their products in front of consumers in the hopes of driving purchase decisions. Publicists and PR professionals are equally guilty of sending endless pitches or press releases to get the media’s attention, failing to realize their endeavors...

Is PR Late to the VR Revolution?
A general rule when it comes to human nature is that people tend to be pretty reactive. It’s difficult convincing yourself to change when you don’t see any reason to. On the flip side of things, it’s easy to look back with the benefit of hindsight and say “Of course I should’ve invested in Google when it was trading at $40 a share.” Being proactive simply isn’t in our nature.

Twitter Rules for World Leaders
New research from Burson-Marsteller reveals that Twitter is the ruling social network for world leaders, used by 276 heads of state and government, and foreign ministers in 178 countries. With his angular, controversial style, Donald Trump has a huge number of followers—but another international figure has him beat by more than 3 million. According to the study, it’s Pope Francis who’s the most followed world leader on Twitter, with a combined total of 33,716,301 followers on his nine language accounts...

New Tactics for PR Pros to Combat Fake News
Fake news may be fake, but it certainly isn’t new. In fact, we’d argue that the idea that “fake news is a new concept” is fake news in and of itself. Boom! Though the concept—we’d previously refer to it as propaganda or a hoax, for instance—is old news, fake news’ sweeping damage in today’s world is unprecedented. The internet and social media, Facebook particularly, have given individuals...

Consumers Value Brands that Can Give Back Time or Experiences
If time is money, then time saved is essentially a quantifiable value—and, according to new research from global research firm GfK, brands that are figuring out how to make customer journeys more efficient and experiences more memorable are the ones most likely to succeed in an ever-evolving retail marketplace. In GfK’s new survey, three out of ten people (31 percent) would firmly prefer...

PR Writing: How to Increase Readership with Better Content Design
Content design, technically speaking, is a loose term used to describe any element of a website or app that isn’t a user interface element. However, it’s more commonly known as a way to describe how article content (e.g. blogs, help sections, and any other long-formats with lots of images and text) is laid out. Many companies use a blog to let their users know what’s happening at their company. However, many companies also make their blogs inaccessible due to a lack of user experience.

New Industry Report Finds Public Relations is on the Rise with Marketers
A majority of marketers plan to increase internal staffing and overall spending on public relations over the next five years as the discipline continues to become an increasingly important part of the marketing mix, according to a new report from the Association of National Advertisers (ANA). The report, conducted by the ANA in partnership with the USC Center for Public Relations...

Personalization Pitfalls: Plenty of Room for Improvement in Comms Campaigns
With personalization now en vogue as a communications strategy, brands and businesses are realizing a range of benefits—from deeper customer relationships to improved conversion rates. What’s more, 9 out of 10 marketers (88 percent) say their customers expect an experience across digital properties that’s personalized to them—yet despite all this, many marketers...

By the Numbers: Is Brand Loyalty Waning?
New research has uncovered a startling gap between what consumers expect and what businesses are currently providing—despite a wealth of data available about customer behavior and purchasing choices, companies have a long way to go in terms of effectively using this data to better meet expectations.

4 Tips to Ensure Press Coverage
Journalists such as reporters, editors, producers, hosts and bloggers follow a rhythm for press coverage determined by deadlines, competitors, show times and breaking news beyond their control. Infiltrate that rhythm seamlessly with perfectly timed guests and sources to ensure incredible press coverage with journalists for your client or organization.

Business Clichés Are Lazy Language: Five Clichés and “Don't Says” to Avoid Like … Well, You Know
Look up “business buzzwords” or “business clichés” and you’ll find article after article about these irritating, overused phrases. In fact, new ones come out each year documenting the latest crop that’s flourishing in workplaces across America. In a world drowning in buzzwords, tweets, and hashtags, spouting mindless clichés in the workplace may seem harmless.

A New War Wages in PR: Management Consulting Firms Are Creeping Onto Our Turf—Are You Ready?
“We have to be ready. You, me, the others. There’s an attack coming from far away.” “Not coming Bruce. It’s already here.” Bruce Wayne and Diana Prince might be talking about the impending doom coming to a theatre near you, but they just as well might be talking about management consulting firms...

3 Ways You Can Increase Influencer Engagement Through Brand Awareness
A successful call-to-action campaign depends less on the sweetness of the deal than it does on the familiarity of the brand—and the same can be said for influencer engagement when targeting journalists and/or media outlets., whether good or bad, is picked up quickly. How nice for those companies. The problem is that it takes time to build your foundation—months or even years can be spent marketing your brand, getting it to a level where influencers recall you with zero effort.

PR Agency Perspectives: How to Explain the Press Release vs. Media Pitch to Clients
We’ve all heard it before: Clients requesting press releases over and over again, as the quick and easy solution to end up in major media outlets like “Good Morning America,” Cosmopolitan, The New York Times or even BuzzFeed. But, as we all know, press releases have their time and place, however they aren’t the way to secure this type of coverage.

PR 101 Reminders from United and Pepsi: How to Properly Manage a Public Relations Crisis
Recent controversy from United Airlines and Pepsi has put both brands in the ICU. Will they ever recover? Well, that all depends on how their PR teams manage the respective gaffes. As both companies scramble to perform some serious damage control, they are shedding light on what to do and what not to do in similar situations.

5 Lessons Content Marketers Can Learn from Traditional PR
For many small business owners, mastering the art of great PR can seem like a talent reserved only for the wizards and dabblers in the black arts. At best, it seems like something that requires a whole department packed with experts. But the truth is that it’s actually just a matter of strategy.

Journalists Speak Out: Four Tips to Ensure Press Coverage
Reporters, editors, producers, hosts and bloggers follow a rhythm determined by deadlines, competitors, show times and breaking news beyond their control. Infiltrate that rhythm seamlessly with perfectly timed guests and sources to ensure incredible press coverage for your client or organization. If that sounds easy, it’s not.

How to Find Millennial Influencers in 2017
Millennials are a very important demographic for marketers. As the largest generation since the boomers, millennials are fast growing in purchasing power. Two of the most powerful keys for tapping in to Millennials as a customer base are millennial influencers and the social media platform, Instagram.

Life After Social: Study Proves Brand Building Must Happen Outside of Facebook
As a marketing professional, it’s easy to find yourself in a bubble. From the people you hang out with to the websites you surf, the conversation always revolves around social media. But the truth is that social media isn’t everything—and one recent study proves this to be true.

3 Ways PR Pros Can Make Their Clients Easier to Reach
Now that our smartphones have apps that allow us to access breaking news, trade stocks and get directions, it can be easy to forget they still remain quite useful for making calls. But studies show we’re now utilizing our mobile devices to reach out...

United Airlines Analysis: A Lesson from CEO Oscar Munoz in How NOT to Manage a PR Crisis
Everyone has experienced the annoyance—if you’re making an event or on a tight travel schedule, or the thrill—if you’re a flexible traveler—of being booked on an overbooked flight. But on Sunday, a United flight out of Chicago took the run-of-the-mill experience to a now famously bizarre and horrifying sky-high when police used brute force to evacuate a passenger from the plane.

6 Tips to Skyrocket Your MarCom Results Through Strategic Storytelling
“Quality is much better than quantity. One home run is much better than two doubles.” – Steve Jobs Steve Jobs’ words ring true when it comes to accessing the success of B2B public relations campaigns. As PR professionals, it’s often our first instinct to reach for the stars when securing coverage, but getting your client quoted in five different articles isn’t a success if they don’t reach...

Speed Matters: How Technology Is Keeping PR Teams on Track
PR has always been a speed game. Even when companies communicated through newspaper and telegraph, it was important to catch crises from the start and get ahead of the storm. In many ways, nothing has changed, but today, PR teams need to be faster than ever if they want to avert a meltdown. In order for PR teams to do their best work, they need to partner closely...

How to Build Relationships with Powerful Influencers in Your Market
Influencer marketing has become an attraction for contemporary entrepreneurs and marketers. Instead of building each traffic funnel from scratch, businesspeople can now leverage popular influencers. Each of these influencers is usually followed by hundreds and thousands of people—people who can be perfect for your business.

The New Social: How Social Media Is Changing the Job Market
Social media is changing the world; it affects how we communicate and share news, how we do business, and how our careers evolve. The latest data estimates that 81% of the US population are on social channels spread over 2 billion social media profiles. Given the prevalence of social media, if an organization hopes to stay relevant they’ll need a solid strategy for ongoing...

Why Content Marketing Is the New Branding
The advent of the Internet has brought about irreversible transformations in almost every sphere of human activity, and brand marketing is no exception. All organizations—big and small, commercial and non-commercial—are now on the cusp of this rapidly evolving marketing landscape where they’re compelled to interact with consumers.

Five Tips for Mentoring PR Students and Young Comms Professionals
In today’s public relations industry, young PR professionals are fighting to be accepted into an internship program, or an entry-level position, with firms throughout the country. However, many get discouraged and feel lost once they enter the industry and are left with no sense of direction. But those of us in the industry can help!

How to Effectively Use Pattern Interrupt Elements to Shake Things Up in Your Videos
Have you ever caught yourself nodding off during a less than thrilling speech at a conference? Or felt your eyes glazing over as a long-winded salesperson rattled on about their product? If only those speakers had known about the power of pattern interrupts, you would never have reached a point of boredom. All businesses need to be aware of these. Pattern interrupts are small, unexpected actions that offer an element of surprise.

Social: It’s #Personal—What Millennials Want Brands to Know About Social Advertising
Social marketing is getting more and more important to brands. In fact, according to 2016 State of Social Business by Ed Terpening and Aubrey Littleton, ad budgets increased by 73 percent last year and are expected to grow even more in 2017. As brands look to make social a bigger part of their efforts...

Workplace of the Future: Mr. Spock Wouldn’t Survive the Smart Machine Age—Will You?
We are on the cusp of a new era, led by artificial intelligence and deep learning. This so-called Smart Machine Age will lead to technology and robots outperforming humans in many tasks. This is bad news on the job front. In fact, research from the University of Oxford states there is a high probability that 47 percent of jobs in the U.S. will be automated over the next fifteen years.

How a Great PR Campaign Can Build Trust with Global Clients
PR is an industry based on people and the relationships created between them. While successful PR people build positive connections based on trust, integrity, reliability and ability, weak practitioners can damage a business quite easily. Adding in the extra angle of creating a successful PR campaign for overseas clients is like painting that tightrope with butter.

Six PR Strategies to Turn PwC’s Oscars Fail into Oscars Gold
The humiliating but very human failure of two PwC accountants viewed live by millions of people around the world at the Oscars dealt an enormous blow to PwC’s brand and now it’s time for the accounting and professional services firm to do whatever it can to repair its public image.

PR’s Evolution into Activation: How Promotion Transformed to Engagement
Back in the day—a little more than a century ago—what later became known as public relations had its genesis on Broadway and in Hollywood with the rise of press agents. Characterized as enthusiastic, energetic proponents of plays, movies...

How Can PR Help to Restore Public Trust in Media? Here’s Three Tips
According to a late 2016 Gallup poll, only 32% of respondents had “a great deal or fair amount of trust in the media.” This statistic is unsurprising, given the rise of “fake news” permeating today’s headlines and social media feeds. For communications professionals, the fact that consumers are becoming more splintered...

Trustworthiness & Transparency—What Is Our Responsibility as Communicators?
In 1979, shortly after I joined Burson-Marsteller, the company was bought by one of the leading ad agencies, Young & Rubicam. 1980 was a presidential election year and also the year we held our first joint annual meeting. At that gathering, Alex Kroll, Head of Y&R USA, made an observation, a prediction and a plea that I clearly have remembered over the years.

Reporters Love Trendspotters: Make Your Pitch Bigger by Linking to One
Journalists like to write about trends, and tying a PR pitch to a trend—or better yet, bringing a trend to a reporter’s attention—can be an effective way to get attention for your client or organization. But several caveats apply. Obviously, the trend you’re describing should be relevant to the journalist’s beat. You should have evidence demonstrating that it’s a legitimate trend worthy of coverage.

PR Best Practices: 5 Ways to Communicate Smarter in 2017
PR professionals are continually tasked with creating dynamic and creative strategies to engage with their target audiences in rapidly changing environments. To address this challenge, PR professionals ought to take a page out of the marketer’s playbook and pull in current consumer data and insights...

Cut it Out, Already: 4 Things PR Pros Need to Stop Doing Right Now
Having been in the PR world for a number of years it still amazes me how often I witness the same poor methodology and bad practices repeated over and over. While we’re all aware of basics like extremely poor writing or pitching without researching media outlets or beats, there are a few other things that particularly get under my skin.

Unlocking Purchasing Power Through Social Video—Tips for Reaching Three Generations of Consumers
On the heels of a holiday season in which retail sales grew four percent year-over-year according to the National Retail Federation, new research commissioned by online video solutions provider Brightcove provides some valuable considerations for those who are looking to use social video as a way to pick up sales and make inroads with their target age groups.

Creative Headlines Will Drive PR SEO & Success in 2017
The power of ideas and proper communication is one that cannot and will not be underestimated. No marketing and public relations executive is immune from the educational curve of bringing their client up to speed on the latest in search, bridging the digital and SEO divide on an hourly basis.

Hey Communicators, Don’t Take Your Foot off the Gas—Survival is Not Guaranteed
I had the wonderful opportunity to travel to Costa Rica this Christmas break with my family. We rented a car and saw a great deal of an unbelievably beautiful country. One of our trips took us from the Cloud Forest in Monteverde, to the country’s Rain Forest. A 4-hour drive on dirt covered, pothole-filled roads in the middle...

PR Pros Are Stressed—So Get Your Om On in 2017
Bulldog Reporter recently reported that being a PR professional is one of 2017’s most stressful careers. So if you’re still looking for a New Year’s resolution you can really use, look within. Think about what you, your body and your mind really need. If you’re anything like me, it’s stress management. In 2017, I’m committing to mind and body health. How? By practicing more yoga.

Event Networking: Collect More Leads at Your Events with These 7 Steps
Got an event coming up this year? You’re investing quite a bit of money and time into this, so you want to turn as many visitors into leads. You’re greedy, we get that, you should be! You’re hoping to get lots of data to get them into your sales process, but you don’t want to bore visitors to sleep with an endless survey. Right?

The Email Maturity Curve and Inbox Love: New Research Data Identify Why Email Marketing Falls Short
New research from marketing technology firm Magnetic, in partnership with retail publishing network Retail TouchPoints, pinpoints marketers’ underutilization of personalized and triggered emails to customers as a major reason why email marketing is falling short of consumers’ expectations. The firms have jointly released Inbox Love, a research report...

PR Agency Account Management: From Adequate to Astonishing
Think about your client, that person with whom you have regular contact, the one who critiques the work of your account team and signs off on your agency’s invoices. He or she sits in a tough spot. Over here is your agency entrusted to deliver on the PR programming you successfully sold to the client. Over there is “the boss,” the person your client contact reports to, reviewing...

Content Marketing Tips: Why Repurposing Is a Real PR Content Strategy
“Content is king!” Who hasn’t heard that phrase bounded around in digital PR and marketing before? While content marketing isn’t a particularly new concept, it’s now unavoidable if you want a successful website and online business. That’s great, but unfortunately content ideation is one of the more difficult tasks, especially in digital PR where the clients you represent expect quick turnarounds.

Five New Recommendations for Successful Communications in 2017
Is traditional PR dead? No, but it may be hard to recognize these days. “In the last ten years, what was called public relations has gone through a radical transformation,” said Joy Scott, CEO and founder of Scott Public Relations, an award-winning boutique PR firm specializing in healthcare and technology.

PR Pros as Compelling Content Providers in 2017
We are in the midst of transformation within the PR industry globally, where leading practitioners are not just a brand’s primary storyteller and distiller of data—but essential business drivers through compelling content creation and distribution. As recently documented in the New York Observer ranking of top PR firms, the smarter leaders in our industry underscore the importance...

Building Customer Loyalty Through Social Media Engagement
As the channels for reaching our ideal audiences continue to splinter, it’s important that we as communicators look beyond where these audiences gather, to also consider how to combine the strengths of these channels for maximum benefit. Consumers are increasingly demanding a better customer experience...

5 Tips for Writing a Press Release that Gets Noticed
The reports of the death of the press release have been greatly exaggerated. A press release can be an effective way to relay information to the press, and ultimately the public. But it takes a special something to get it noticed. Here are five press release tips to ensure your work will stand out from the crowd. 1. Make sure your story is newsworthy.

Communications Game-Changer: Millennial-Led ‘Tribes’ Emerge as Social-Experience Sharers
Shared experiences—more than interests, geographies or professions—spur the formation of modern-day communities, or tribes. And optimistic Millennials, often fueled by social networks, are quickest to join tribes, likely to make themselves resilient in this anxious era, according to new research from Brodeur Partners, part of the firm’s ongoing exploration into relevance.

Are We Just Social Fakes? Only 11% of Millennials Believe People Are Authentic on Social Media
Millennials are generally known to crave transparency, but according to new research from adaptive video developer Cynny, this age group—which spends a significant amount of time online—may not be as authentic when it comes to interacting with friends, family or acquaintances on social media.

Top Emerging Technologies That Every CIO Should Watch for in 2017
There is no doubt that the technology landscape is changing at a frenetic pace—and staying ahead of the major trends reshaping today’s world will ultimately separate the winners from the losers. We have all heard the mantra of these days, “you either disrupt yourself or you will get disrupted.” The risk of becoming irrelevant has never been greater. It’s the role of CIOs to look beyond...

2016 Gift Guide for Your Favorite PR Executive and Marketer
It’s only a few days before the holidays—cue the gift giving anxiety attacks. With lots of gift guides floating around, we decided to pull together a list to help find something for that special communications and marketing someone in your life...

Comms Priorities: Customer Satisfaction Soars When Consumer Needs Come Before Marketing Goals
Companies practicing true “customer-first marketing” have a lot to gain, according to the results of a new online survey conducted by MarketingSherpa. The findings indicate that nearly 60 percent of highly satisfied customers believe that the marketing of a company they were satisfied with “often or always” puts their needs ahead...

How Do Employees Really Feel About Company-Sponsored Holiday Parties? They’ll Attend, But Most Prefer Cash Bonuses
With the holiday season in full swing—and with many companies hosting their holiday parties this weekend—a new survey from HR services provider TriNet reveals how employees at small and midsize businesses (SMBs) really feel about these company-sponsored events. The survey, which gauged enthusiasm levels for this holiday tradition...

Human Touch? Not So Much: 44% of Consumers Say They Prefer Chatbots for Customer Service
According to new research from interaction management firm Aspect, the desire for automated interaction is real—and actual human connections in service exchanges may be becoming obsolete. Forty-four percent of respondents to the company’s annual survey said that—if a company could get it right...

Communicating Holiday Goodwill: How Nike’s Simple Gesture Earned Big PR
Nike has never been a company hurting for good publicity, but they scored a major coup during Thanksgiving week, making ABC World News Tonight’s “America Strong” segment on that Tuesday. And all it took was a pair of sneakers and a PR person with a keen sense of when and where to strike. Hector Mondez, a 17-year-old foster child in Lovett, Texas...

Incorporating Design Thinking into Business PR
Positioning clients at the forefront of business in 2017 means that PR agencies must anticipate, plan and deploy creative solutions on behalf of their clients. In addition to linear strategic practices, many innovative businesses are employing the concept of design thinking to pre-identify solutions to potential quarterly and annual...

PR Writing in Focus: 5 Bad Writing Habits That Irritate Editors
Editing is cathartic for editors. There’s just something about dissecting a sentence and making it concise that speaks to our nerdy souls. But that doesn’t mean we want to rewrite everything. It’s like taking a piece of marble and turning it into David for Michelangelo. The writer is the artist, not the editor.

Does a Company’s Reputation Rest On the Shoulders Of the CEO?
When you think Facebook, you think Mark Zuckerberg. When you think Amazon.com, you think Jeff Bezos. These and other examples of celebrity corporate leaders show that a CEO’s personal brand can work in concert with the corporation’s brand, helping elevate both in the public’s eye. “Like it or not, today’s CEO has been pre-cast in the role of their company’s..."

Fake News Perspectives: This Election Cycle, Facebook Let Us All Down
By the now the narrative is clear: The outcome of last Tuesday’s election was a surprise to many individuals in the U.S. and around the world and to supporters of both political parties. In any instance when a predicted outcome is proven wrong, there is a reflection period, which often sparks a curiosity.

Let the Numbers Talk: How to Use Data to Grab the Media’s Attention
What do you have that nobody else has—that every reporter wants but rarely gets? The numbers. In today’s competitive media environment, the ability to provide the media with current, factual and objective data is a surefire way to position you (or your client) as a thought leader and generate press coverage.

5 Tips to Find Diverse Candidates That Make Dollars and Sense
Despite progress, the following statistics on workplace diversity should trouble you: Ernst and Young recently did a study which found that more CEOs of large U.S. companies are named John (5.3%) than there are CEOs who are women (4.1%); there is not even a single solitary openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500...

PR Troubleshooting: Anticipating PR Client Problems Before They Arise
The year 2016 will historically go down as one of the most challenging in PR for a myriad of reasons, all interestingly enough related to perception, image and communication on a global scale. The weighty importance assigned to managing problems before they arise has become a paramount PR prerogative...

For Second Year in a Row, Starbucks Mired in a Cup 'Controversy' That Isn’t
Pity poor Starbucks. They just can’t keep a lid on controversy when they introduce a new seasonal cup. OK, this doesn’t really merit pity, and there’s nothing poor about the nation’s largest coffee chain, but at this point it seems they are a victim of their own popularity, so that just about anything they do is going to rub...

How to Overcome 3 Common Email Marketing Challenges
Email marketing is far from dead. In fact, email has the highest return on investment (ROI) for marketers. Even compared to social media, email comes out on top. “Every marketer knows that email typically drives the best potential ROI when compared to search, social, and most other tactics, offline or online,” said...

Media Pitching Perspectives: When to Swing for the Fences
One thing I’ve been doing as of late is asking clients—both existing and new—what they would consider a “home run placement.” It’s something I suggest all media relations pros do as well. This isn’t something that should replace the idea of reaching far and wide and securing as much coverage as possible...

The Science of PR: How PRTech Reporting Proves Value
Agencies, PR pros and anyone who is in the business of communications practice art on a daily basis. From managing clients, to building narratives, to working with journalists to secure stories, the most successful outcomes are certainly rooted in the art form of PR. But along with the art comes science: the systematic knowledge gained through observation...

Cybersecurity PR: How Last Week’s Impacted Sites Should Respond
On Friday morning, some of the world’s biggest websites were knocked offline for hours. The issue was with web-technology provider Dynamic Network Services, Inc. (known simply as “Dyn”) which was the target of multiple Denial of Services (DOS) attacks. According to the Wall Street Journal, DOS attacks “can knock websites offline by flooding them with junk data, blocking..."

How To Be an Effective Media Spokesperson
Love it or hate it, coverage in the media is one of the most powerful ways to build your professional reputation—and showcase your organization. Contrary to popular belief, most effective media spokespeople are “made” not “born” and expertise in media interviews isn’t taught in school and often doesn’t come naturally to 90% of the population—especially those in highly technical...

Dealing with Difficult Comms Clients: Find a Way to Love Them, Or Learn to Let Them Go
“It’s not personal, it’s just business.” How many times have you heard someone say that and thought to yourself, “what a load of crap”? All business is personal because all business takes place between persons. The human element is the only element that conducts business. It is impossible to separate humans from commerce. Think about the best business relationships of your career.

Exploring Today’s Media Landscape: A Journalist Turned Media Entrepreneur Talks PR
Pitching journalists is a little like meeting with a hiring manager for a job you really want—before you reach out to or meet with them, you’re spending time researching the interests of someone you may have never met so you can better anticipate what will appeal to them. But wouldn’t it be nice to get inside the head of a journalist so you can discover what motivates them...

New APAC Journalist Survey Finds Press Releases Are the Most Trusted Source for News Stories
Press releases are still the most trusted and go-to sources for writing news stories or verifying facts among journalists in Asia-Pacific, followed by the corporate communications spokesperson and a company’s official website, according to a new report from PR Newswire that offers insights for PR practitioners, marketers and corporate communications pros to help them better...

Sorry to Burst Your Bubble: The Long Tail Keyword Myth
Today’s article is a controversial one, with many PPC marketers believing that long tail keywords are the holy grail of Adwords and that they are the best way to get cheap high converting traffic. I am forever hearing from so called “PPC Experts” say that they were able to double a client’s profit by taking all of their 2-4 word...

Public Speaking Takeaways from the First Presidential Debate
All eyes were on the recent first presidential debate and the showdown did not disappoint. From the outset, it was obvious the candidates had two very different presentation styles. Hillary Clinton remained composed throughout and even showed amusement, with an occasional laugh and a shimmy in response...

How PR is Like 'The Walking Dead'
If you’re a fan of The Walking Dead, October 23rd can’t come soon enough. Negan – that evil, yet intriguing character with his spiked bat, Lucille. Who ended up feeling Lucille’s wrath at the end of the season finale? How are Rick and his fellow survivors going to outsmart Negan...

PR Blast(off) from the Past: How NASA’s Apollo Program Shaped Public Relations and Innovation
July 20,1969. The nation sat fixed on the television as man set foot on the moon. The social unrest of an entire country melted away as Americans saw man successfully go where no man had gone before. The distinct sense of community United States citizens felt during World War II was replaced by prosperity and individualism through the 1950s. Not until the success of the Apollo missions (specifically Apollo 11)...

What’s the Buzz Surrounding Measurement Month?
As PR pros, we hear the same industry buzz words over and over again. As such, any tenacious PR pro has heard a bit about PR measurement/analytics, especially as of late. With all the measurement “buzzwords” being tossed around, what key terms should be at top of mind as you yearn to better understand how proper measurement works?

Guilty by PR Association: 86% of Financial Services Pros Say 2008 Still Impacts Reps
Nearly a decade after the 2008 financial crisis, many financial services companies are still feeling its impact when it comes to reputation, according to new research from integrated communications firm Makovsky, which recently released its 2016 Wall Street Reputation Study. The study—which surveyed communications, marketing and investor relations professionals...

8 Crucial Questions Every PR Pro Needs to Ask Their Client Before Getting Started
You’ve reached step one in the PR process and landed yourself a new client—great! The relationship between client and PR pro is give and take. Not only should they be grilling you with a bunch of questions, you too need to be ready with some of your own. In order for you to do the best job possible for your client...

How to Hire and Fire a PR Client
September represents new beginnings in the world of PR and marketing around the globe, an exciting time for repositioning brands, launching new ventures and kicking off seasonal event series. Many an annual retainer campaign is initiated in the month of September, for obvious, quarterly fiscal planning reasons. Leading up to and in tandem with this exciting timeframe, is the need to advance assess how and when to hire or fire an agency client.

Could Brand Mascots Replace Celebrity Endorsements?
More than just recognizable characters associated with a brand, today’s brand mascots seem to have lives of their own. Brand mascots such as the Geico’s Gecko may have made their first appearances on television, but have since moved on to social media.

5 Tips for Greater PR Productivity This Fall
The year is 3/4 over. Do you know where your annual goals are? September seems to arrive so much more suddenly than all the other months. One moment, you’re relaxing on the beach during a well-deserved summer vacation, and the next moment, reality smacks you in the face.

Betraying Brand Trust: Can Wells Fargo Recover After Widespread Fraud?
There are PR crises, and then there are reputation s—storms. Chipotle, Subway and the NFL know well about the former. Volkswagen and now Wells Fargo could teach a course about the latter. Wells Fargo, one of the country’s largest banks, has revealed it discovered widespread fraud perpetrated by employees seeking to increase sales, and thus bonuses.

PR Business Perspectives: Time Does Not Always Equal Money
We have all heard the saying, “time is money”—especially as it pertains to business. In my experience, that is not always true. In any business, public relations especially, you are going to put in a lot of time and see little immediate rewards. It’s my belief that the time you invest in a project is never wasted, even when you...

PR Writing in Focus: The Anatomy of a Strong Blog Post
With the rise of the digital age, public relations tactics have continued to broaden to include strategies like blogging, which give companies a direct channel to their consumers. In fact, blogging specifically allows organizations to increase brand awareness and name recognition, establish themselves as an expert in their industry, boost their visibility through search engine...

Does Your Crisis Scenario Plan Need Some Love?
A few years ago, many of us would not have envisioned a world where Twitter, Facebook Live and large-scale community gatherings would have such an impact on the way crises develop. Yet, this is our world today and our “new normal” as communicators and crisis management teams.

Gawker’s Demise: Justified—Or an Attempt to Quash Free Speech?
“F*** it”. The headline donning the front page of Gawker in its last days is fitting, given how the outlet ran for nearly fourteen years. Having declared bankruptcy and been sold at auction, the website which crowd-sourced funds to purchase the Rob Ford crack video, introduced readers to the Silk Road, and outed many prominent public figures as gay, has finally (unsurprisingly) been hoist by its own petard. A Brief History of Gawker's Legal Troubles: 2007: Gawker published the subtly titled “Peter Thiel is totally gay..."

Colin Kaepernick’s 'Stand' for Equality: As Responses to Protests Go, the NFL Scores
Colin Kaepernick has chosen to remain seated during the playing of the National Anthem to protest what he calls oppression in our country of black people, and the NFL is okay with that. In fact, its statement on the issue was downright bland: “Players are encouraged but not required to stand during the playing..."

Welcome to PR, Grads! 8 Pitching Tips for PR Pros Just Starting Out
Thirty-five years ago, I walked into Burson-Marsteller’s New York office eager to start a new career in public relations. I recall it was a cold, windy January morning and I was wearing my brand new suit (yes, we wore suits in those days!) as I entered 866 Third Avenue. I met some legends that very first day including agency founder Harold Burson, Buck Buchwald, and my new boss...

What 26,000 Pitches Taught Us About Securing Top-Tier Press
Spend a few minutes on a journalist’s Twitter stream and you are bound to run into at least one post complaining about marketing and PR pitches. If you want a good laugh (or cry), @smugjourno is a bona fide wall of shame for PR professionals. Even though some journalists have battled with PR professionals, we recently surveyed 1,300 publishers (full results are coming soon!) and still...

8 Tips for Effectively Working Your Next Networking Event
Almost once a week, I find myself attending a networking event or conference. Some are great and some less successful. But no matter how the panels are, the most important part of any event are the conversations. We all know that networking events can be a little daunting or awkward at times, but here are a few ways you might be able to curb that and make a new connection.

Shattering the PR Glass Ceiling: Fixing the Wage Gap
Gotham PR recently penned a thought piece on PRNewser regarding the pay wage gap in the public relations industry. There is no denying that the PR industry is predominantly comprised of women in the workforce—70% of the workforce, to be exact.

Going for the PR Gold: How to Execute a Medal-Worthy Campaign
The 2016 Summer Olympic Games are underway and, like most of America—the world, really—I’m fully engrossed in the action…and the drama. How would Michael Phelps’ historic Olympic journey end? Is the current U.S. women’s gymnastics team the best ever? What will the commentators say next and how will social media react? For two weeks every four years, we all stumble...

Facebook is Working to Eliminate Clickbait—and You Won’t Believe What You Can Learn From This!
Facebook announced last week it would tweak its timeline algorithms to weed out obnoxious “clickbait” posts. This is long overdue, as no doubt we’ve all become jaundiced from reading those breathless headlines that populate our screens, even if we don’t actually go for the bait and click through.

Are You Guilty of PR Data Bias? What, Why and How to Check
When it comes to marketing analysis, public relations has been known for output—media relationships developed, placements gained, awareness garnered, and perceptions changed. In-depth analysis and measurement of the outcomes of this output...

Is the PR Industry Lagging Behind Other Marketing Sectors in Data Analysis?
Many people involved in the PR industry agree that the business needs to start making sense of the volumes of data available. There are no widespread metrics, analytics or KPIs. This stands in stark contrast to related industries like product marketing and advertising. Data analysis has been important to these industries for decades. The development of the Barcelona Principles is a big step...

Tap Into Facebook’s Topic Data To Reveal and Reach Your Audience
We filter and customize our experiences in all areas of our lives to match our preferences. Dating apps help us tailor romantic opportunities to our liking, today’s music platforms recommend songs based on our preferences, and online shopping apps...

Gotta Catch ‘Em All: The Captivating PR of Pokémon Go
If asked to predict a major unifying event for Generations X, Y and Z, most people would have been inclined to say something along the lines of a national crisis, death of a trans-generational musician, or a presidential election. It is unlikely that anyone would’ve predicted Pokémon Go to bring those of all ages together...

Pokémon Go and More: Reaching Millennials with Nostalgia Made Modern
Millennials recently hit an important milestone: they now outnumber Baby Boomers and make up the largest living generation. At 75 million strong, it’s no surprise that companies are constantly competing to grab their attention. After all, if you can get roughly a quarter of the U.S. population to buy your product, you’ve got a good thing going.

Stop Screaming! How to Earn Media in the Cluttered & Noisy Tech Industry
Like rambunctious kindergarteners fighting for the attention of their parents and peers, tech companies—from startups to mid-market and even the enterprise—consistently fight for the mass awareness and third-party validation that only earned media can provide. With benefits of press ranging from awareness and perception to validation, lead generation and even valuation...

Media Relations Subscribed: The Problem with Startups’ Approach
The startup business seems to be a truly unique dimension. Having goals and conditions different than the “traditional” companies we know, startups focus on measuring and experimenting, validating and learning, rather than on actually driving sales and making money. To enable regular and effective evaluation, startups need to operate in much shorter time cycles.

Where’s the Problem? That’s the Problem with Many Pitches These Days
At WriteCulture, we teach all kinds of tech PR workshops and seminars to corporate PR staff and PR agency account teams. When we teach the pitching class, we run into the same roadblocks across the PR spectrum—too much jargon, wasted email intros with lifeless descriptions of company products, and no hooks to grab the reporter’s attention.

All Grown Up: How to Be Relevant to Younger Audiences
Today’s younger generations are some of the most studied, talked about, debated and questioned groups. Whether you call them “20- and 30-somethings,” “Millennials,” or “Gen Y,” they are America’s largest generation population. They were born between 1980 and 2000, and are currently between the ages of 16 and 36.

4 PR Lessons from 'Absolutely Fabulous'
If you’re in the PR biz and haven’t watched the BBC comedy series Absolutely Fabulous (AB Fab), then you’re certainly missing the opportunity for the best belly laugh you’ve had in years. Lucky for you, however, the British comedy has come to the big screen. The series and the movie, for those unfamiliar...

PR Disaster in the Making: National Park Service in the Crosshairs after Sexual Harassment Allegations
The National Park Service (NPS) has very quietly hired a crisis communications expert at former posts at the Department of Defense and the military. Tom Crosson is now Chief of Public Affairs & Spokesperson at National Park Service. An environmental journalist who is reporting on the NPS scandal...

PR Writing in Focus: Hook Your Audience—Headlines and Teasers Matter
Just like a great book title, a headline is the hook that captures the attention of readers. The teaser is similar to the snippet found on the back cover. These pieces not only create the first impression, setting the tone for the words that follow, but they also provide important clues to what the content is about. When a headline isn’t enticing or informative, readers simply move on...

Marketing to Memory: Techniques for Ensuring Your Brand is Remembered
Andi Bell is able to memorize the order of several decks of cards. He does this by associating each card with a character. The Jack of Clubs becomes a bear, the Two of Spades a pineapple and so on. He picks a route through a city, making note of buildings and points of interest. He then places these characters along the route. The bear is sawing the pineapple in front of the House of Parliament...

Pokémon GO: Are Brands Responsible for What Their Customers Do with Their Product?
As you may have heard, Pokémon GO is kind of popular. According to TechCrunch, the game now has more active online users than Twitter, and a higher user engagement rate than Facebook. ​Oh, and 5.6% of all U.S. Android users are using the app regularly—put into context, the game is downloaded on more Android devices...

'Air' Conditioning: Human-Interest and Visual Angles Are Keys to Pitching TV
When I interview print or online journalists about their editorial coverage and PR preferences, their answers are all over the map. Sure, they all want PR pros to target pitches more carefully, and most list email as their preferred method of communication. Beyond that, there’s tremendous diversity in the topics they cover...

How Segmenting Audiences Is Creating Giant Value for Companies
So many companies face a marketing and public relations dilemma—they are talking to three audiences and trying present a united front. They have business clients (B2B) and individual customers (B2C), or they are speaking to some other variation of a split audience, but their website, or other communications, have to speak to everybody. This is why segmenting can be so integral...

What Does the Rise of Bing Mean to the PR Industry—and Can It Really Beat Google?
A couple of years ago I’d have laughed myself at that title, as all of us in the SEO world joked how Bing’s only user was someone’s grandmother desperately in search of how to access Google. But since 2008 Bing has seen a steady rise in its search query market share from 9.8% to 21.6% in April 2016 across the USA. With this in mind I suggest as do others that it’s about time that the PR industry, along with the wider marketing world, starts taking Bing seriously...

How To Be a Better Comms Agency Leader
Perhaps the biggest challenge today at the agency C-level is the art form of managing the flow of communication, while empowering both internal and external teams to excel at an intense hourly pace. Practices in all agencies—whether it is PR, marketing, advertising, digital, social or experiential—will all recognize...

In Data We Trust: PR Lessons Learned from Brexit and Trump
Many people in the UK and, frankly, the world were stunned by the Brexit vote to leave the European Union. But maybe we all should have seen it coming—in an article in Vox by Ezra Klein, After Brexit and Trump, it’s time to stop trusting our guts and start trusting the polls, he writes in regards to the Donald Trump ascendancy...

Game of PR: What 'Game of Thrones' Can Teach You About Public Relations
Are you still staring wide-eyed at your TV in wonder from the Season 6 finale of Game of Thrones? There’s no denying that this season was one of the greatest we’ve seen, and the last episode was on fire (or should I say, wildfire?) The popular television series, based on best-selling novels by author George R. R. Martin, tells the story of different individuals and their quest...

Political Brand Personalities: Three PR Takeaways from This Year’s Election
So far, the 2016 race to the Oval Office has been unlike any other. For better or for worse, candidates have battled for media coverage, and more importantly, votes. Aside from the importance of staying on message and managing reputation, the unique campaign holds many relevant takeaways for PR pros.

Five Best Practices for Email Marketers
I’ve heard some people say email isn’t a very effective marketing tool. But as a marketer, I have to disagree. Email marketing remains a big part of the job when it comes to your firm’s outreach. I’m certainly not alone in this opinion—some of the biggest names in the biz have stated without a doubt that email marketing...

How Digital Technologies Complement Offline PR Communication Strategies
2016 is expected to be a year of huge dynamic changes in the digital world. Our technology is constantly becoming more advanced, as are our techniques. We know our clients’ needs are ever-evolving, and the audience’s desires change even more. That’s why we are always on top—and ahead—of new changes in the industry.

Why Mixing Paid, Earned, Social and Owned is Essential to Modern PR
There’s a perception in the industry that all PR does is media relations, but this purist way of thinking is no longer relevant. We’re now fully embracing the age of social and the current media ecosystem is much more complex and layered than before. Luddites, you might as well pack up your things and go home. Rebecca Brown, executive director of social strategy...

Data and Branded Content’s Role in Media Relations
There is a giant discrepancy between what people believe is the work of a communications/PR firm and what the work actually entails. This is never more true than the idealized opinions of startups versus the (often brave) firms and agencies that represent them.

Journalism Isn’t Dying—But There Are New Requirements For the Digital Age
In May, all three of these media groups announced planned staff changes to markedly scaled back each of their newsrooms. The initial reaction on Twitter and elsewhere was the same doom-and-gloom declaration of the “death of journalism” that has been circling the industry for years. But while this may have been the most high-profile flurry of media staffing reconfigurations for some time...

Driving Value in B2B PR: It’s Not About Impressions—It’s About Impact
Over the last five years, a troubling conversation about the (perceived) insignificance of public relations has gotten louder and louder. Amid the ever-changing landscapes of media and business, some say public relations is old hat—a relic of an earlier time, when print media reigned, press releases were king...

5 Reasons Organizations Should Digitize Their Crisis Communications Plans
When faced with a fast-moving crisis, organizations need to be ready to respond at lightning speed. Traditionally, PR executives have used hard-copy crisis communication plans to determine next steps in addressing the media during an emergency. However, these plans are not highly accessible or actionable...

Data Breaches are Now Changing Consumers’ Online Behaviors
“Breach fatigue” is undeniable at this point—data compromises are a daily occurrence, and so-called “mega breaches” aren’t met with the shock and awe that they once were. But just because breaches have become old hat doesn’t mean that people aren’t recognizing the risks and reacting to them—in fact, the results...

PR Outside the Box: 5 Traits of an Effective PR Leader
Being a PR professional in today’s rapidly moving, digitally driven landscape certainly has its challenges, but also tremendous opportunities to set yourself apart from others—yet only if you are brave enough to make the jump. If you are happy with the status quo, and envision a career where you are relegated to sending out boilerplate press releases over a newswire...

PR Patdown: Blaming Travelers for Long Security Lines Shows the TSA Just Doesn’t Get It
I don’t use the term “unmitigated gall” very often, but that phrase sprang to mind upon reading that the Transportation Security Administration was trying to shift the blame for lengthy screening delays—at least in part—to its “customers,” the traveling public. From a PR point of view, this is always a risky tactic in a crisis.

3 Ways to Incorporate Inbound Marketing Into Your PR Strategy
The public relations industry, like many others, has experienced massive change over the years, as traditional PR continues to make the journey into the digital world. The fundamentals, however, remain the same—push your message out to a targeted audience in order to build awareness and drive revenue. PR pros now have to constantly learn new skills and adapt their processes in order to stay on top of the noise. Content marketing and inbound marketing are more relevant than ever...

Harvesting Emotional Intelligence in Public Relations: PR = EQ
Given the wildly successful business tome Emotional Intelligence 2.0, there is a renewed excitement about how to shape the culture of the future workplace. Core tenets of this work revolve around identifying key attributes that contribute to working in groups and independently. The focus on emotional intelligence, also known as EQ, in tandem with IQ, is important to the very survival...

Hey Marketers, June Cleaver Days are Over!
Men are stepping up and are increasingly more open-minded about taking on traditionally female-centric household jobs like laundry, cleaning and cooking—and both men and women are frankly fed up with marketers’ female-focused approach to household-oriented messaging, according to a new study from Harbinger Communications, which specializes in marketing to women. Marketers would be wise to keep up with these changing roles, as it is likely to pay off on their bottom line—and they may want to re-evaluate their strategies. “Consumers are prepared to open their wallets and show loyalty to brands that reflect modern..."

4 Ways Instagram Can Amplify Your PR and Branding Efforts
Instagram is certainly not the new kid on the block anymore. With 400M-plus active users a month, it has established itself as a robust engagement platform and one of the most popular social media networking platforms out there, not far behind Tumblr...

PR Lessons from Beyoncé: How to Master Social Media
No interviews, magazine covers or late-night talk shows led up to the release of Beyoncé’s “Lemonade.” Instead, Queen Bey turned to social media to promote the weekend release of her visual album. Through videos and photos, she tipped off her “bee-hive” and set the internet on fire.

6 Story-Sharing Tips for Not-for-Profit Communicators
Today’s not-for-profit communicators need to rethink the way they share their message. The days of sending out a press release to a mass email list with donations received or information on their annual gala are long gone! In 2016 and beyond, those sharing non-profit industry news should speak directly to those they really need to reach, whether they’re journalists, potential donors or activists...

PR, Science and Politics: How Psychographics Impact Public Relations
With current and industry developments occurring in real time, it is important to factor in how respective audiences react or proactively respond to news. It is this very challenge that led researchers to identify how better to communicate during this heavily contested U.S. election cycle.

How to Avoid a Bad Hair Day in Marketing and PR
Of all the folks here at Forza, my hair probably changes the most. It’s been a kaleidoscope of colors, from blue to purple to orange and red. When I was hired, it was pink. It’s currently a mix of blue, pink and purple. What does this have in common with marketing and PR? Actually, quite a lot, when it comes to the client/agency relationship. Here are three big aspects that fashion hair color and PR and marketing share: You get what you pay for. There’s no substitute for experience and education.

9 Ways Baseball is Like Public Relations
Baseball is back! So many of us look forward to the start of the season because it signifies warmer weather, family fun, fan optimism, and—being a former professional baseball player in the Dodgers and Rockies organizations—I just love the game. Often I tell my friends, colleagues and family that so many facets of America’s Pastime reflect the themes of other businesses...

New Academic Study Predicts PR Industry Will Approach $20 Billion by 2020
The USC Annenberg Center for Public Relations has just released an executive summary of its Global Communications Report, a comprehensive survey of senior PR executives, which predicts the worldwide PR agency business will grow from its current estimated size of $14 billion to $19.3 billion over the next five years. To accommodate this growth, agency leaders anticipate their headcount will increase over the same period by about 26%. Industry leaders—both in agencies and in-house—believe...

Ten Resume Tips for PR Job-Seekers
Soon after spring break, the floodgates open and the onslaught begins. Daily emails from eager candidates looking to land their first agency job begin filling our hiring manager’s inbox. While the public relations industry has certainly evolved, one thing has remained the same: a résumé is still needed as the first point of contact with a prospective employer. A solid résumé can help a candidate...

Honing Your Reporter Relations: 15 Tips for Media Preparedness
I began my career in television, which lent itself to the near-decade I would later spend as a media spokesperson for several very large energy companies. During that period, depending on the day, I could be speaking to reporters on issues as mundane as a random power outage affecting one neighborhood to detailing the minutiae of nuclear security in the wake of the September 11 tragedy and everywhere in between. Since then I’ve been counseling others–media spokespeople, corporate executives, military personnel...

A Five-Step Guide to Media Relations Success
When I was in college, I had a part-time job as a server at a restaurant. It was my first time working as a server. Despite this, I enjoyed it very much and felt that I had the knack for it. The job itself was simple: Greet the diner, tell them your name and that you’re here to help take their order, and capture what they would like to eat and drink. Customer service was, is, and always will be, the name of the game in the food-service industry to ensure your customers/diners are happy and satisfied with the experience. Fortunately for me, this type of thinking translates well...

2016 is The Year of Corporate Social Responsibility—Here’s Why
One phenomenal change sweeping the corporate landscape is the concept known as corporate social responsibility, or CSR for short. This concept is incredibly promising because it shows that corporations are finally starting to listen to the needs of the consumer. They are finally starting to recognize that people only want to do business with companies that they trust.

Political PR: How Live Events and Social Media Drive Voters to Action in Era of “Clicktivism”
The importance of authentic connections at live events and on social media is more apparent than ever this election cycle, according to new research from ticketing and registration platform Eventbrite, which recently released new research that explores the impact of both live events and social media on a political campaign. The company partnered with research firm Ipsos and surveyed 3,025 American adults ages 18+ to understand how influential...

3 Tips to Master the Art of Storytelling Through Branded Video
In recent years, the web has become over saturated with content—making it even more difficult to reach consumers. With users in control of what, when and where they consume media, brands are having to use innovation and creativity to engage with their audience. This combination of challenges has created the perfect storm, catapulting the popularity of branded entertainment.

Public Relations Takeaways from Boaty McBoatface
When an agency of the British government put the name of its new polar research vessel up to an Internet vote, it was probably counting on something like the Shackleton, the Endeavor or something paying homage to a great scientist or ship of the past. What it wound up with by an overwhelming majority was…

Overcoming PR Millennials’ Fear of Calling Journalists—Like, On the Phone
After my first full year working in the PR industry, I have learned so much about myself and continue to grow every single day. However, there is one thing that I, and I know many of my fellow “Millennials” struggle with, and that is picking up the phone and making a call. Now, I’m not too fond of all the stereotypes and beliefs surrounding Millennials, but I will absolutely support the fact that we much prefer convenient communication because it’s what we grew up on. So to me and my peers, sending a quick email...

The PR Campaign: Getting It Right
“When you know better, you do better.” Maya Angelou’s powerful advice rings true for any PR professional who has watched their big campaign tank. When late hours and big bucks add up to a whole lot of nothing, it’s easy to get discouraged. But the truth is, wins and losses hold equal value in forming your strategy—and the better you become at evaluating your efforts, the more literate...

Apple vs. FBI: Feds Are Losing Public Battle Over Unlocking iPhone
As the FBI signals it may try to avert a courtroom showdown with Apple over whether the gadget giant should be required to help unlock the San Bernardino iPhone, a report from Vrge Analytics released this week indicates that Apple is winning the fierce public battle. According to the new survey of 657 people, more Americans believe that Apple has made a more compelling case that it shouldn’t be required to help unlock the phone to determine if the shooter was tied to extremist Islamic groups.

Are Small Businesses Utilizing Digital Marketing?
The majority of small businesses in the U.S. do not engage in digital marketing, a new survey released this week from B2B research firm Clutch finds. The results suggest that potentially thousands of small businesses are negatively impacting their success, limiting their growth—and making it easier for competitors to capture and convert potential customers. According to the research, two reasons shape small businesses’ decisions to hold back on digital marketing: (1) the associated expense and (2) inexperience with the required...

The First 48 Minutes of a PR Crisis
When faced with a crisis situation, what’s your immediate reaction—fight, flee or freeze? The correct answer? None of the above. As specialists in crisis communications, we are often called upon to help at the eleventh hour—or later. We see a full spectrum of reactions from clients—there are those who want to charge in with an all-out offensive, those who hope the situation will remain under the radar until it is resolved, and those who are frozen in indecision. These instincts are entirely normal. But the bottom line...

Money Madness: Should NCAA Coaches Make More than College Presidents?
Did you know the average salary for college head coaches was $823,000 for the 2014-2015 season? As college and university basketball teams head into March Madness on the road to the NCAA Final Four, Americans have weighed in on views about coaches’ salaries. In a recent survey conducted by Finn Partners, nearly two in three respondents...

How Facebook Reactions Will Impact the PR, Marketing and Communications Industries
While “liking” something on Facebook is nothing new, users will now be able to express themselves on posts much more clearly than ever before and for PR, marketing and communications...

How to Pitch the News Media In a 140-Character Landscape
Longtime pitching guru Shelly Gordon, principal of G2 Communications and a workshop leader for a training company called WriteCulture, has witnessed the arrival of Twitter and the swan song of the press tour. Now, she’s embracing the 140-character landscape by doing her research, staying creative and building relationships in new ways. We asked Shelly for her best “lived it” advice on pitching. Q: How have your approaches to journalists changed in the past two years? Today there’s a paradox: There are far more ways to communicate with journalists, but you’re far less likely to reach them, unless you can schmooz them at a tradeshow. The chance that a journalist will answer the phone nowadays is slim because half as many journalists...

Is There a PR Disconnect Between Small Business Owners and 2016 Candidates?
While the 2016 candidates widely discuss broad business and economic issues, new research finds nearly 90 percent of U.S. small business owners think candidates are not making small business a top priority. A new survey released by HR services provider TriNet reveals an alarming disconnect between candidates’ platforms and the issues most important to U.S. small businesses. According to the TriNet 2016 Presidential Election survey conducted by Wakefield Research...

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