Posts by Jon Newman

This is changing how we work ‘for good’

It is the end of May and I’ve changed my Zoom virtual background at least ten times. Every day is one meeting right after another because frankly it’s easy to stack meetings when you don’t have to drive to them. I’ve also achieved “video bingo” having done meetings on Zoom, Teams, Google, Skype, WebEx and RingCentral. I’m not sure if any of those “new normal” accomplishments are good or bad, but they are what life is for most of us in public relations and marketing today. However, there are things that we’re doing and learning that I think we will …

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Lessons I’m learning as we adapt to our new reality

One of the best things I’ve done in the last few years is join the Virginia Council of CEOs. VACEOS is a group that connects leaders of companies throughout the state and places them in small peer groups, called Roundtables, which meet regularly. One of the backbone rules of the Roundtable is that we agree not to give people advice but to “share experiences.” I’ve found that experience sharing approach invaluable in helping me grow both professionally and personally. So, I’m writing this post in that spirit, since much of what I have seen online is folks giving advice on how to …

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Three things you can do to get your organization ready to hire a PR firm

As the CEO of a thriving public relations/content marketing agency, I wear a lot of hats — and one of them is business development. Over the years, I’ve seen many trends in our quest to acquire “new business,” the latest being the lengthening of the new business cycle, or the amount of time from the first meeting with a potential client to the “close.” The amount of time is getting longer. In the past when we’ve experienced that, it’s mainly been because the potential client just wasn’t sure what they were looking for. As a result, we revamped the questions …

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PR, where now?

So Josh beat me to the punch on his crystal ball for 2018 and while I share most of his sentiments please allow me to take a more global view of the public relations industry as we begin 2018. The last two years has seen us drink water from a fire hose as we learned how to marry media relations, social media, content marketing, brand journalism and all their associated measurements. We have come through the other end well positioned to bring a strategic eye to these disciplines to maximize clients’ budgets and help them achieve their goals. What has …

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College athletic departments are now on the “social” clock

Yes, that’s a picture of two of my prized possessions — a Rutgers helmet and football signed by Greg Schiano for my 50th birthday. They are proudly displayed in my office. I have a great deal of respect for the man and what he did for my alma mater’s football program. I could write about how he got a raw deal the last few days, and how I hope he gets a shot to prove that he’s a great college head coach.  But this is not that blog post.  No this is addressed to all the college and university athletic department …

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#AskJon: How can I prepare my CEO for a TV interview?

So, I recently had to work with my daughter, who is working on a project, and coaching her through being on television. And, not to say that CEOs or 17-year-old girls meet somewhere, but the premise is pretty much the same. You want to start with a couple of different basic premises, either the old who, what, when, where and why, and how to communicate those things right off the top, or think about what are the three things, no matter what the reporter asks, you want to communicate. And then you work with your CEO to make sure that …

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#AskJon: Why is my content marketing strategy failing?

So, the main reason that we find that content strategy fails for clients is because they didn’t take the time to plan out, not only their strategy, but what their goals and audiences are on the front end. So, if you’re seeing and not getting the results that you’re hoping for, take a step back and revisit a) did I set out goals to begin with, b) do I have audiences that we’re really writing for and c) do I have an amplification strategy that really makes sense for a) and b). For example, you can write the best content …

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#AskJon: What makes video content marketing a great tool for business, big or small?

First of all, it’s a lot less expensive and time intensive than it used to be. For example, we’re shooting this with about an initial investment of two to three thousand dollars worth of equipment that we don’t have to keep on buying over and over again. Plus, even if you’re looking at an outside videographer, those costs are a lot less expensive than it used to be. I’m shooting this video today, but we’re also shooting three or four other videos that you’ll see in the coming weeks. So we’ll knock these out in about an hour. Some interesting …

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#AskJon: How can PR specialists use brand journalism?

So, I’m talking to all you fellow PR folks out there when I say, you know and I know that at the heart of it were all storytellers. In the good old days, we told that story through the media. When there were tons of media to pitch, and there were tons of outlets out there. Well, there are fewer media to pitch and much fewer outlets out there, and it’s becoming harder for us. But, technology has enabled us to become our own publishers. So, PR folks can take the stories they want to tell, publish them online, control …

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#AskJon: Is brand journalism only for big brands?

The short answer to that question is no. Small brands and small organizations can be really good brand journalists, but you do have to ask yourself a couple of questions. Number one, do you have the time? Number two, do you have the content? And number three, do you have the manpower? It is a step beyond blogging or driving traffic to a website, or your website. It’s more creating an ongoing relationship with people and your potential customers to talk about brand and what you’re all about, as opposed to a product. So, if you don’t have the time …

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