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Public Relations

The Power of TV

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The Power of TV

By Charlotte Cheek

Television is powerful, but what about television is so powerful? It gets you in front of a large audience quickly and engages them visually. Television gets people to focus on one screen and absorb everything on it. At the same time, less and less people pay attention to advertisements. With Netflix, Hulu, and DVRs, skipping over commercials is normal, so how does television remain so powerful? How can a business reach people on television without advertising?

Get into the Content People Watch

First, move away from paid advertisements into the content people are paying to see. People pay for Netflix, Hulu, Cable, etc. so that they can watch television shows, sports, and the news. Most businesses cannot afford product placements in viewer’s favorite shows or to sponsor sports teams, but businesses can afford publicity in the news (especially the local news). Anyways, advertising is expensive and it lacks third party validation that local cable stations have. People trust their favorite news stations and reporters to tell them the truth more than they trust a business’s 30-second commercial to tell them the gritty truth. Publicity is free and television is a powerful tool for business. The trick is finding the story and pitching it to the right news station in your area. 

Power of Placement

Being placed in a local news segment is just the beginning. It places you in front of a large audience and uses televisions strengths: sight, sound, and motion to make a lasting impression on the audience. More specifically, cable stations can reach local markets extremely fast. Speed is extremely important in today’s competitive market and one good segment on a local news station can lead to more opportunities for free placement on television, in newspapers, or on the radio by others interested in your story. So, if you want to captivate a large part of your target market visually, then remember how powerful television is.

 

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Traditional Media is the Perfect Complement to Social Media

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Traditional Media is the Perfect Complement to Social Media

By Charlotte Cheek

Today’s technology has put a strong emphasis on 140 characters or fewer, a square image, and sharing with your closest 500+ Facebook friends, and less of an emphasis on the old fashioned black & white newspaper at your front doorstep every morning. Many might contend that long gone are the days of paperboys and traditional media, as social media and online sources steal newspaper and magazine readers, radio listeners, and television viewers.

But what if I told you that the world is a big enough place for all types of medias?

Well it’s true. In fact, they cannot only coexist, but they complement one another too.

For example, say your charity event just showed up on the TV news. If you want to have it seen repeatedly, you can take it to social media and more people will see it. Publicity is the gift that keeps on giving – as long as you keep on giving it. By sharing traditional media (TV, newspapers, magazines, or radio) on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and even Instagram…the number of views rises higher and higher.

Did your business just show up on the front page of the newspaper? Copy and paste it on social media. Instead of all your posts coming directly from you, a third party will validate what you are doing for your community. Sharing traditional media on social media gives a variety of content that keeps things interesting.

An article or news clip is dead in the water after it has aired or been printed, unless you take matters into your own hand and share.

Don’t forget the newspapers, magazines, TV, or radio because they only will help your business!

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The Type of "Middle Man" You Want.

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The Type of "Middle Man" You Want.

By Charlotte Cheek

If someone came up to you and said “I’m awesome,” would you believe them? Or would you have an easier time believing someone who said, “So and so is really great, because they did this.”

It’s easier to believe someone giving someone else a compliment than someone giving themselves a pat on the back.

That’s the power of third party validation.

Third party validation means having the media talk about you in a favorable way. The media is the middle man you want. They are not biased to you or your organization; so, their positive words hold more substance.

The media has the power to trash someone’s image or product, but when they don’t it means they mean what they say. Writing positive things about you or your organization does not directly increase their bottom line like it does yours. The public is more willing to take the media’s word for a great new product or service more so than believe an advertisement, because the media is not being self-serving by speaking well about you or your company.

Advertising will get the word out about your product, but a media outlet publishing an article or news channel talking about your company in a positive light will grab more peoples’ attention.

People trust their favorite media outlets as a reliable source to tell them what is going on in their world. So, getting the media to talk about you and your company is worth your time and money. So, go out and get a stamp of approval from the media, I promise it will help.

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Bill Gates & Donald Trump

What do they have in common? The power of public relations!

These two names are known far and wide, and they’re known as successful, wealthy businessmen. Both Gates and Trump used PR to gain public awareness of who they are, and although their names and faces are established, they continue to work with PR reps to make sure people know what they’re doing, and ensure that the right things are being said. 

These men are obviously extreme examples of how powerful PR can be. However, PR is something that every person who wants a well-known business needs, in order to gain public awareness of his or her name and brand. Who knows? With the right PR rep, you could be on your way to owning the next Trump Tower!

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The Latest and Greatest in Social Media? Instagram!

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The Latest and Greatest in Social Media? Instagram!

 

By Alexandra Kutcher

Picture this

How many times a day do you scroll through endless news feeds? Probably more than you have time for, thus, the rapid-fire scanning scroll.

Where’s your voice – your company’s voice – in all of this? You know how you handle your social media intake. What about everyone else? You may rightly assume that most handle their news feeds the same way that you do: rapidly, quickly, hurriedly, briefly …

So, how do you get people to pay attention?

The short answer? Instagram.

Why? People use Instagram to look at photos. It’s a medium that draws people in more so than, say, Facebook because we are a visual breed. We want to look at things.

Attention

No one has it anymore.  Not a very long span of it, at least. Who has time to read a three-paragraph Facebook status on your all-star husband re-staining the deck and how your 3-year-old helped, all the while learning Latin?

Be seen not heard

Post a photo and blurb, and you are much more likely to engage and capture attention.

Scroll, scroll, scroll … something about the deli down the street … scroll, scroll, scroll … bad hairdresser something something … scroll, scroll, scroll … oh, what? I didn’t know they were remodeling. Gorgeous counter top! Is that concrete?

Like and comment: “Looks amazing, Jeannine! What’s the counter top made of? I’ve never seen anything like it!”

Jeannine posted a picture on Instagram and shared it on all her social media. She stood out. She posted an eye-catching photo in a unique format – square shaped with a dream-like edit.

Using photos to connect and grow your business allows the public to relate on an individual level.

On a personal note

If you don’t use Instagram, start now. Share those photos on all your social media outlets.

Don’t just talk about what you’re doing – show it. Customers, clients, and fans will see much more than just your brand. Post photos from your office. Post around holidays. Post with clients. Anything!

People will see themselves on your page, get excited, and share on their social media. This grows your following! Others will see friends, people, and places they recognize, and connect on a personal level.

And, they’ll want to be part of it. All because of Instagram.

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So You’re in the News, Now What?

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So You’re in the News, Now What?

By AMY MARIE OROZCO

Congratulations! Your company was featured—favorably—on the front page of a large metropolitan daily newspaper. Way to go! You can’t buy publicity like that.

And the story spun into a 30-second bit on the nightly news? Priceless!

Go and bask in the glory … I’ll give you 5 minutes.

So, now what?

First, I’m going to assume you have covered the operations side of things. Ready for the resulting onslaught of orders. Materials in place. Distribution channels clear and open. Staffing ramped up.

Now, I’m going to tell you how to parlay your 15 minutes of fame into an eternity of publicity. Don’t let this avalanche of good fortune go to waste. Here’s what you must do:

  • Thank the journalists responsible for putting your company’s name in lights. No need for a gift, but a phone call and an email or handwritten note will do the trick.
  • Buy reprints of the newspaper story. Get it in digital form, too. Then create professionally produced reprints. Post the reprint on your Web site, Facebook page, and the rest of your social media.
  • Link to the 30-second news bit to your Web site and all social media.
  • Remember to use SEO and back links to further drive traffic to your company.
  • Share your news with ALL your clients and prospective clients. Copies of the reprint go via snail mail. An email blast or your e-newsletter goes into everyone’s inbox.
  • Think re-purposing and reusing. Did the newspaper article refer to you as an expert in your field? Add that to your list of credentials. Did the newscast recommend your business? Better put that on your Web site.
  • Find out how the reporter decided to do the story. From a press releases you sent? A customer? How do you find this out? You ask them directly! Use the same tactic in the future, but don’t rely on it solely.
  • Pitch other media with your news. Like a trade magazine or a radio talk show—now that you’re an expert.
  • Keep your press kit updated. Always.
  • Stick to your publicity calendar. Continue sending out press releases. Be regular with blog posts. Is your Web site fresh? Don’t rest on your laurels.

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Careful, speaking “off the record” can stay on your permanent record

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Careful, speaking “off the record” can stay on your permanent record

By AMY MARIE OROZCO

Journalists question President Richard M. Nixon during a Watergate press conference—Oct. 26, 1973.  White House Photo Office Collection.

Journalists question President Richard M. Nixon during a Watergate press conference—Oct. 26, 1973. White House Photo Office Collection.

Anything said to a journalist may be used in a story, unless a previous agreement has been made—emphasis on previous. Remember that.

Speaking “off the record” needs to be a premeditated act with a very specific agreement reached between the subject and the journalist. For many, “off the record” means the source of the information won’t be named. However, to the Associated Press and journalism schools “off the record” means information given to a reporter is for his or her knowledge only and cannot be used in a public way. Oftentimes, this off-the-record information points the reporter to a new source, one who perhaps—reporters hope—has more leeway to speak “on the record.”

What many people think of as “off the record” is technically called “on background,” which means the information given to a journalist can be used but not attributed by name. The journalist will attribute the information to an agreed upon title such as “city hall insider” or an “executive level source within the company.”

When is it appropriate to speak off the record? When you have very important information of public significance and need a promise of confidentiality, according to the Associated Press Stylebook. Only speak after you have reached a previous agreement with the reporter. The AP Stylebook also advises that “a reporter who reveals the name or identity of someone who was promised confidentiality can be held liable for breach of this agreement.”

For some critics in today’s 24/7 news cycle, off the record has become synonymous with license to attack without accountability. For journalists, off the record and on background remain cornerstones of upholding the First Amendment.

To play it safe with the media, follow Media Manoeuvres Golden Rule:

Always assume, if you are near a journalist, camera or microphone, that you are on the record and if you don’t want to see it, hear it or read it, then don’t say it.

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