Posts about Public Relations

Four Considerations When Revisiting Your Public Relations Strategy

A public relations strategy is like the stretch of I-95 between Richmond and Washington, D.C. No, really, stay with me on this one. It’s never really finished. It’s a work in progress. You’ll always work from Point A to Point B, but occasionally, you’ll take some detours, try new things, evaluate what works and what doesn’t and apply your learnings the next time you travel. A public relations strategy is similar in that you often know your starting point and ending point. And while you have in your mind what you need to do to get there, sometimes you have …

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When is it time for a news release?

Many times, when companies have news to share, the instinctive thinking is ”we need a news release.” But nowadays in particular, defaulting automatically to a release is not always the right approach. (See my post here with alternatives to a traditional press release.) To start, let’s acknowledge that news releases can be an effective communications tool, just as you know when and how to use one. The first two questions that you should always be asking: what about this is relevant and interesting to the media, and what are our goals with this particular communication? If you and your team …

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PR at Its Core: Actions over Words

Anyone who has received an email from me may have noticed a rather abstruse quote as part of my email signature. It’s an observation by T.S. Eliot in which he asserts that “Being is intelligible only in terms of becoming.” I like it for two reasons. First, it’s derivative enough to demand that you ponder it a bit, like good poets are wont to do. But perhaps more importantly, I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiment, which if you were to reduce it to a bumper sticker basically means “you are what you do.” That’s really the essence of public relations. …

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Happy National Newspaper Week: RTD Subscription Giveaway!

We use Slack as a messaging tool in our office. It’s where we keep projects moving, send files and share information. Not a workday goes by when someone doesn’t share a news article in our main channel about something happening locally. Local journalism – especially news about transportation, restaurants and our clients – drives a lot of our conversations at Hodges. We have our local paper of record the Richmond Times-Dispatch to thank for that. When Hodges launched more than 15 years ago, we were primarily a media relations shop. We helped clients get in the news to build brand …

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Ensuring your content reaches the right people

Reaching the right people at the right time, with the right message is the pillar of a successful content marketing program. And with more organizations developing content these days, the competition to reach potential customers with tailored content is fierce. For many organizations, the challenge usually isn’t the creation of valuable content. The challenge is ensuring your content is breaking through the millions of pieces of content shared every minute. It used to be enough, for example, to share posts to your Facebook newsfeed or Twitter timeline. Organic reach would get your content to your desired audiences. Facebook posts used …

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How much should you be blogging?

Call it the great blogging debate. Should you post short, topical posts at a high frequency like multiple times a day? Or is it better to post in-depth posts with only the most highly-targeted information less frequently? The answer lies somewhere in between. What you want are quality blog posts in a quantity that drives traffic to your website, converts that traffic into leads, establishes your brand as an authority and drives long-term results. Blog frequently. Frequent blogging really does drive traffic. It also improves SEO and fosters a connection with your target audiences. HubSpot and Moz ran concurrent experiments to determine the …

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How to make your media advisories (and events) more social media-friendly

Does your team regularly distribute media advisories? If so, make sure they’re incorporating social media when pulling together info. I love a good media advisory. Done well, it should communicate to journalists what to expect at an event, the types of video and audio that will be available, the on-site spokespersons and other relevant logistics. This is done through the five basic journalistic elements: Who, What, When, Where and Why. Because social media is such an integral part of the communication strategy for newsrooms, don’t forget to communicate about relevant hashtags or handles. If a journalist covers your event, whether …

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The Business Case for Strategy Before Tactics

“We talkin’ about tactics. Not a strategy. Not a strategy. Not a strategy. We talkin’ about tactics.” – Allen Iverson (OK, maybe not an exactly transcription of what he said.) One of my favorite YouTube clips is Allen Iverson’s infamous press conference where he bemoans the criticism directed at him over missing practice. His point, the games are what really matter, but people are obsessing over the wrong thing. While this metaphor certainly isn’t entirely transferable, many companies fall victim to a similar trap – jumping to tactics before identifying a clear strategy. It’s understandable. Tactics are easier to understand. …

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Getting Your News Out: Alternatives to a Traditional Press Release

So you’re sitting in a conference room talking about an announcement your company needs to make, you say, “We need a press release!” Wheels are set in motion, someone on the team takes on the assignment, and now your team is crafting something to send to media before you’ve even decided if it’s the right approach. News releases were once the go-to tool for PR professionals needing to share news about their client or organization. In today’s media landscape though, things have changed. News releases still have a role, but they aren’t always the best method for getting the word …

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The Consumer PR Survey is (Almost) Dead

The Associated Press recently added a new section on polls and surveys. The guidance is focused on political polling and explains in a blog post, “The new chapter, available immediately to AP Stylebook Online subscribers, leads with longstanding guidance that the mere existence of a poll is not enough to make news.” While the new chapter is focused on political polling – PR practitioners should keep this guidance in mind when considering consumer surveys for media relations outreach. You know the one. Seeking media attention, a company commissions research through a telephone or Internet firm to poll 1,000+ Americans and …

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