PR Fuel: PR News, Views, & Stews

How to Keep Your Public Relations Strategy “On Message”

May 01 2009

A politician gets asked about abortion and the answer somehow comes back to education. They’re asked about tax reform and the answer relates to education. Foreign policy is inexplicably linked to, you guessed it, education. What’s going on here? The politicians are using messaging points, the essential and core elements of an argument or pitch. It’s the message that you want to get across, regardless of the subject. It’s like getting a piece of press on “your terms.” Too often, success in public relations is measured by how much publicity you get. But if the publicity isn’t “on message,” what good is it? Read More

Maintaining a Healthy Balance in the Public Relations/Journalist Relationship

April 30 2009

It took me a few months to figure out her modus operandi. For four years, she called me once a month. It was always on the last Friday of the month, and always before lunch. We would chat for a few minutes I would ask a few questions; she would skirt around the answers. She would pitch me a story or two; I would sigh and act disinterested. Maintaining relationships with journalists is critical to long-term success in public relations. The journalist/public relations relationship must be fostered with trust and then fueled with consistent communication. Here’s a case in point. Read More

Public Relations Basics: Confidence is the Key to Public Speaking

April 29 2009

Recently I attended an interesting investment conference at Columbia University. The occasion brought together some of the world’s most respected money managers and financial industry professionals. I marveled at the fact that men and women who represented over $100 billion stood on stage at one point. I was more impressed, however, by the way the speakers and panel participants conducted themselves. Confidence is the key to public speaking, a major part of any public relations strategy. And confidence in public speaking was the message that Leon Cooperman drove home at the conference. Read More

Feature Me!

April 28 2009

Small or large, all companies hunger for feature stories highlighting the positive elements of their businesses. Feature stories in newspapers or magazines make for great calling cards when trying to close a deal, hire employees, attract investors, and draw consumers, clients, or customers. Getting the story published, however, can be a gut-wrenching and lengthy affair. Getting the story to read how you want is even more difficult. Here are five tips for pitching a feature story and making it a public relations winner. Read More

Can You Take a Vacation from Public Relations?

April 27 2009

Half-day Fridays, long weekends, longer lunches, ducking out for “getaway” day baseball games, early afternoon drinks, meetings that last 18 holes. Summer is great fun, but some people in the public relations industry seem to be on a permanent vacation. Are you one of these PR slackers? Read More

Be Careful Not to Create Your Own Public Relations Crisis

April 24 2009

Late last week, I received “the freak-out call.”  Back when I was a journalist, one public relations rep or another would call, frantic about a client I was about to portray negatively in a column or story. As a journalist, the freak-out call was a guilty pleasure; sometimes it even provided information for a story that I might not have gotten without the freak-out. The call I received last week revealed what it was like to be on the public relations end of a potential negative news story, and a self-made crisis was narrowly averted through careful crisis management. Read More

The PR Fuel Mailbag: Press Releases as Email Attachments, Expert Quotes, and Loudmouth CEOs

April 24 2009

Q: I need to send out a press release that includes graphics. But many public relations pros say not to send out press releases as an attachment. What should I do? Read More

You Can Learn a Lot From a Public Relations Pro

April 23 2009

Kelly Larabee is one of my favorite public relations contacts, someone who can help a lot of people in the PR industry simply by sharing her knowledge. I decided to just fire away at Kelly with some questions via email. As many of public relations pros know, this is the kind of interview you want — essentially one on your terms. Unlike being under the gun while on the phone, television, or radio, a written response to interview questions allows you to set an agenda and take time to polish your answers. Take a few minutes to digest her ideas because what she has to say should be very helpful to anyone in public relations. Read More

Strengthening the Relationship Between Public Relations and Business Journalism

April 23 2009

Surfing the web this morning, I came across an interesting interview on Talking Biz News with Hope Heyman, a senior vice president at Edelman (http://weblogs.jomc.unc.edu/talkingbiznews/?p=2096). Heyman has been in the public relations business for more than 25 years and she also worked as a business journalist. The interview touches on a number of facets regarding the relationship between public relations practitioners and business journalists, and Heyman’s insights should be required reading for any PR department or newsroom. Read More

Mickie Plants Trees, Does Push Ups – What’s Wrong With This Picture?

April 22 2009

I have to admit, I’m not very green. I resent recycling. I don’t drive a hybrid. But I love trees. And I like Planet Earth — both the series and the orbiting sphere on which I reside. When I started eReleases, I liked the idea of taking paper out of the equation (physically mailing and faxing press releases was still being done in earnest 11 years ago). For me, it was about being efficient. Read More