The Gong Blog

Topic: Public Relations

When you do business with the companies you’re passionate about, everybody wins

When you do business with the companies you’re passionate about, everybody wins

At The Hodges Partnership, we have a great group of community-minded individuals who quietly (sure, call us modest) serve the Richmond community through a variety of board positions and other community-related activities. It’s something that drew me to Hodges because community involvement is something I’m passionate about. I take pride in the fact that I’m able to work with a group who shares that enthusiasm. Fortunately, it’s not just outside of the office that we’re able to make an impact...

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Empty Tesla Charging Station

Tesla unplugs from PR: Why that’s a bad move

When I first read the headlines that Tesla had disbanded its internal PR department, my mind returned to a story in the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call back in the 1980s when I was a congressional press secretary. The gist of the piece was about the perceived growth of the communications function on the Hill – the trending surfeit of press secretaries, communications directors, press aides, speech writers and the like (obviously well before the arrival of bloggers and tweeters...

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Closeup of shovel in dirt

Not enough fertilizer could help that campaign news conference

Frankly, I didn’t think I had to write this blog. I didn’t think I needed to remind public relations professionals of the basic fundamentals of event planning. But of course, this is 2020, so… Implausibly, inexplicably, inconceivably, there it was. In broad daylight. A press conference of such colossal consequence that it held the potential to upend the unyielding march toward determining the next president of the United States. With so much on the line, and with a campaign’s credibility...

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Monday is the deadline for this easy-to-apply scholarship for PR students

Monday is the deadline for this easy-to-apply scholarship for PR students

I proudly serve as the president of the Richmond Public Relations Foundation. Every year, we give out three $1,500 scholarships to public relations students in Virginia. The deadline to apply is this Monday, Oct. 12 at 11:59 EST. If you’re a junior or senior, I hope you’ll consider submitting materials. Get all the details here. Applying is easy. You’ll need to submit a one-page essay focused on “why you want to work in PR and how you have prepared yourself...

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And here comes the pitch

And here comes the pitch

It is often said that baseball is a game of failure. After all, even the best hitters fail 70 percent of the time.  Or as the legend Ted Williams said, “Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.” Media relations is like baseball. It, too, is a game of failure. Singles and doubles – a quote in the local newspaper or a quick interview on...

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hand holding iphone with all the social icons on the screen

The PR effects of cancel culture

If getting cancelled isn’t part of your social media crisis planning, it should be. Cancelling is a way for an individual or a collective to publicly call out and demand accountability to everyone and everything – from individuals to big brands and organizations. When you can’t bring down the system, you can chip away at it by canceling those on top. (In case “being cancelled” is something you haven’t heard of, read this primer by Vox.) From a 1991 Wesley Snipe movie...

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What We Heard: COVID-19 PR & Marketing Survey Results

What We Heard: COVID-19 PR & Marketing Survey Results

A few weeks ago, we asked the Virginia PR and marketing community to participate in our survey to assess how COVID-19 has impacted our profession. We were fortunate to have 139 professionals respond – and if that includes you, thank you!  At this point, it’s more than a little trite to simply say COVID-19 has impacted our profession. Not to mention the additional unrest. Months into the pandemic, that’s a well-established reality. Some of the most pressing questions we’re now...

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Pandemic already changing how we communicate

Pandemic already changing how we communicate

I connected recently with a professional acquaintance with whom I hadn’t spoken for at least a year. In my email, I suggested that we catch up by phone, and he countered by saying that he’d send me a Zoom link so that we could converse like the Jetsons used to – face to face but from a distance. The exchange struck me as one manifestation from the coronavirus that is already changing how we interact with one another. The cameras...

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10 tips for mastering your television Skype or Zoom interview

https://youtu.be/w3mmd1GT68g One of the neatest things about technology advances is how it lets news organizations connect with sources and experts more quickly. With Skype, Zoom, Google Hangouts and other video calling tools, news networks like CNN and MSNBC can get an expert on the air in a matter of minutes. And, right now, TV stations may have no other choice when trying to air interviews with experts. While we’ve all gotten much more comfortable with video-conferencing tools recently, a video interview via Skype or Zoom is...

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How will COVID-19 impact PR and marketing? Help us figure that out.

How will COVID-19 impact PR and marketing? Help us figure that out.

Without question, the COVID-19 pandemic has turned virtually every aspect of our professional and personal lives upside down. Many PR and marketing professionals have been tirelessly working for weeks now helping guide their organizations and clients through challenges usually reserved for the most severe section of a crisis communications manual.  Like many of you, we at The Hodges Partnership have been wondering more and more, “How will COVID-19 impact PR and marketing in the months and years ahead?” To help...

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PR considerations for “essential services” organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic

PR considerations for “essential services” organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic

As millions of organizations across the country adapt to working remotely, others – those deemed essential services – have to continue operations as normal given the critical function they provide. For these organizations, this not only presents a litany of operational considerations, but PR ones as well for how to communicate to both their internal and external stakeholders throughout this crisis. Adopt a “when, not if” mentality that your organization will have an employee test positive As some organizations have...

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Six degrees of Hodges: A leap day for the books

Six degrees of Hodges: A leap day for the books

What do superheroes, LeVar Burton, superb American Single Malt whisky, historic cemeteries, Ram Nation and Richmond’s mayor all have in common? The Hodges Partnership’s epic leap day adventures. Leap day was a busy day for a few Hodgers, including myself, when I started the day celebrating history in the making with the Enrichmond Foundation at Evergreen Cemetery, followed by celebrity sightseeing at the Greater Richmond Convention Center, where I delivered whisky to the actor who taught millennials to read. To...

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