Articles Written By:

Greg Surber

Give the People What They Want: Aligning your message with what your customers actually care about

Things you probably didn’t know (or care to know) about me. I love Richmond native D’Angelo. I also love—to a lesser degree—Grantland.com writer Rembert Browne, who in my opinion is one of the funniest music/pop culture writers out there. So you can imagine my excitement last week when this happened. (Browne wrote about D’Angelo. I know, right?!?) I was expecting to read about how amazing D’Angelo’s newest album, Black Messiah, is live. What I got was a lesson in corporate...

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Your 2015 PR Resolution: Add a data breach section to your crisis manual

If we keep up at this pace, hackers may very well be Time’s 2015 “Person of the Year.” By now, we’re all familiar with the Sony/The Interview/North Korea saga, where North Korea allegedly hacked Sony’s servers—releasing loads of damaging emails, contract details and the like—with the United States allegedly shutting down the country’s Internet for 36 hours in response. Then over the holidays, news broke that Amazon was hacked, putting thousands of passwords and credit card numbers online. As an...

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Seeing is believing: bad visuals will ruin your content marketing campaign

Content marketing is bubbling up here at The Hodges Partnership. Jon heralded its arrival the other week. It’s been the running theme in most of my blog posts the past year. And other people feel the same way. According to one article, 93 percent of marketers employed content marketing to some degree in 2014. But if you aren’t careful, you will sabotage your content marketing campaign by making this one common, but critical mistake—you aren’t willing to invest in visuals...

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It’s time we all got a lot smarter (or we’ll be out of a job)

Editor. Industry analyst. Blogger. These are people PR folks routinely identify as influencers – those who get the distinct honor of getting bombarded with our pitches, introductory call requests and emails with “quick question…” as the subject line in the hopes they’ll mention our organization in an article. The problem though is that reporters are an endangered species, and more organizations are bypassing the middleman and producing their own content. But as content marketing continues to rise, and more studies...

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Are You Leaving Your Blog Half Finished? Tips for Making Sure Your Audience Actually Reads Your Blog

The past few years, our recommendation to clients about company blogs has shifted from them being a “nice-to-have” to “no-you-really-need-one.” Public relations is becoming more about content creation, and as that happens, blogs are emerging as companies’ best way to showcase their thought leadership with well-produced content in a way that other channels like Facebook or LinkedIn don’t allow. But coming up with good content can take a lot of time, so once you hit “Publish” on that blog post,...

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Between Two Ferns: Just the Right Place for Pitching Millennials

President Obama made headlines the other week by appearing on Zach Galifianakis’ Between Two Ferns, a satirical Internet talk show on FunnyOrDie.com where Galifianakis poses aggressive questions and non-sequiturs to his guests — not the typical media appearance for a sitting president. While it appeared random and mocking at first, the President used the segment to pitch Healthcare.gov. Immediately following, many questioned the President for agreeing to go on the show. Something so irreverent undoubtedly diminishes the Office of the President’s...

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Story Molecules!: HodgePodge for Feb. 7

Tony’s on vacation, so this week’s HodgePodge is entirely made up of Buzzfeed articles! Okay, not really. Here’s this week’s round-up. The Science of Storytelling According to the Periodic Table of Storytelling, Firefly was great because it followed the story molecule: [LrgMalRcy]---Sbn. Don’t drink the water The Winter Olympics kick off tonight, but ahead of the games, the attending media already has been treated to poisonous water, stray dogs roaming the hotels and framed pictures of Vladimir Putin. Once the...

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Not saving lives here

For the past couple years, public relations has found itself at the top of the most stressful jobs list. In fact, if you take away the life-or-death careers (police officer, soldier, fire fighter, pilot), our profession is #1. Not brain surgeon, not nuclear engineer – public relations professional. Take a moment to really let it sink in. Many PR people take this as a point of pride. It shouldn’t, unless we’re also willing to admit a self-importance problem. (Before I...

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Stop speaking in bumper stickers

Although I’m only 30, I’m an aspiring curmudgeon. Nothing brings me more joy than getting on a soapbox and ranting about the absurdity of things. My coworkers love it. (Read: I regularly interrupt my coworkers with rants they couldn't care less about.) Well, I recently was perturbed by something that was too important to share with only the select folks at THP. So without further ado… Conversations around public relations can quickly devolve into esoteric nonsense. Go to enough PR...

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