Motherhood and PR Part 2: Collaboration is give and take

Before February 24, 2016 I was on my own time. I did things when I wanted to do them. Now that I have a baby girl, my personal time is limited after working 8 hours, after the house is clean and once my husband isn’t working on one of his multiple companies (having multiple streams of income definitely helps with a newborn). Some things are unavoidable such as when the baby has to eat and needs a diaper change. This can be at three in the afternoon AND three in the morning with several diaper changes and feedings in between.

Knowing newborns schedules are different than their parents, the parents can better prepare for these anticipated needs of the child, especially at night. One example: breastfeeding moms could, if they prefer, pump during the day and have a safety stock of milk ready to heat up in the middle of the night so that either mom or dad could bottle-feed baby.

Publicist can also anticipate and prepare for their clients such as capitalizing off of certain events. A good example of this can be if a publicist has a musician as a client attending an awards show. The publicist could work their magic and try to get their clients featured on radio before the show and line up interviews during the red carpet walk.

Happy fashion designer talking phone in office
Photo courtesy of careersinmusic.com

Unfortunately everything cannot be anticipated such as a client losing their cool. Publicists should always prepare for a crisis to be ready to respond accordingly. Take Chris Brown for example; the R&B singer has been in and out of trouble since he was convicted to assault against his former girlfriend Rihanna. Chris Brown likes to vent/share his opinions on his social media accounts about things that he feels he “knows” a lot about … just because he has been in a sticky situation or two before. His publicist, if he has one, will have to deal with the fallout.

Babies are just as unpredictable as their little immune systems make them vulnerable to getting sick very easily. It is important for parents to not only prepare to prevent this from happening, but stop it from getting worse. Keeping the child from having sick visitors or giving the child prescribed medicine from their pediatricians are examples of unplanned things parents must do for their child.

All-nighters are not limited to students of higher education. You can give babies and clients all the prep you may anticipate but they will take up a lot of your time with their unpredictability as well. Knowing about this give and take will help you get through the hard times…as it is not a matter of if they will happen, but when.

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Pitch to End

In the world of PR, pitching is sometimes our way of networking and relationship building outside of social media.  We tend to monitor social media posts by journalists to get a feel of what their tone or personality is in order to better craft a pitch.

Picture Courtesy of Ragan's PR Daily
Picture from original article post: courtesy of Ragan’s PR Daily

Depending on the relationship the publicist has with the respected media professional as well as the tone of the message, there are appropriate ways to end an email.

If you’re pitching a press release regarding the loss of your company’s CEO, a publicist may not want to close their pitch email with “Cheers” or “Later, Vader.”  Fostering established relationships with the media is also important so you if an email is being sent to a current connection, ending the email a close such as “Until next time” may be more appropriate than a distant “Regards.”

Here are 35 other ways to close an email:

1. All the best
2. Anonymously
3. Be well, do good deeds, and keep in touch
4. Best wishes
5. Confusion to your enemies
6. Copyright 2014
7. Cordially
8. Enjoy your weekend
9. Fare thee well
10. Goodbye and good luck
11. Good job
12. Good luck
13. Have a good one
14. Have a great day
15. Hope this helps
16. In anticipation of your valued response
17. In my humble but accurate opinion
18. I thank you for your time
19. Keep up the good work
20. Live long and prosper
21. Looking forward to your reply
22. Stay tuned
23. Tag. You’re it
24. Take care
25. Thanks for your help
26. Thank you for your quick response
27. The end
28. This message will self-destruct
29. Very truly yours
30. Vive la revolution!
31. Wishing you continued success
32. With appreciation
33. With many thanks
34. You don’t need to see my credentials
35. Your friend

This post referenced Laura Hale Brockway’s post on Ragan’s PR Daily.

What IS Public Relations?

When it comes to public relations, many people don’t know exactly what it entails.  Some people think it’s building social media followers…but PR existed before social media.  Others think it’s event planning however that may possibly be only one part of a publicists duties.

The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) defines public relations as “Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.

Strategic is key in this definition from PRSA.  It is the job of a publicist to use their variety of  professional communication skills to communicate the RIGHT message to the intended targeted audience through the appropriate media outlet.  A media outlet is anything that provides information to the masses such as newspapers, magazines, blogs, TV, radio shows, etc.  It is IMPORTANT to have something newsworthy before contacting a publicist.

Do you need public relations?  If so, contact me today to discuss how PR can help generate sales/downloads/views for your brand, product, or service.

Cassandra
cassandrajohnsonpr@gmail.com

PRepare Responsibly

Image courtesy of sixminutes.dlugan.com
Try saying this five times as fast as you can!  Image courtesy of sixminutes.dlugan.com

I worked on a great post to share. Unfortunately it got lost between my work and personal files. Hopefully I can find it and have it ready for you next week.

Losing my file is a learning experience as this will, or should at least, make me more accountable for organizing my work. It made me realize to finish something from concept to completion, not just 75% of the way.

This flub reminds me of a publicist working on a pitch to a journalist, having all of their thoughts and ideas together for the first rough draft when then the phone rings. The incoming call can be easily determined if it’s important or not. Instead of focusing on the task at hand, the call is taken when it could have waited until the pitch was complete.  The recipient expected the call to last no longer than five minutes. 20 minutes later after then call ends the publicist stares at the screen trying to gather their thoughts again for the pitch and now they’re lost.

There are times when multitasking should take a break from your daily activities.  I learned in a workshop that you should treat your tasks as if it were an emergency room.  Think about this now as patients are treated based on the severity of their injury or pain, not if they were there first.  Some tasks, especially those that you continuously put off, should have you undivided attention.

Remember if you fail to prepare, you prepare for failure. Focus on the task at hand and you will deliver your best results!

PRivate-Fingers Moving Faster than the Brain

Back in September I attended the 2nd Annual Women in PR Summit & Retreat.  A few of us were talking about how so many people post wild things on social media before they think.  Ruth Ann Weisner of Raw Marketing had a great expression for these people, “their fingers were moving faster than their brain.”  Now more than ever, people are constantly telling their private business on social media.  Whether it’s long Facebook posts expressing anger or “TMI” (too much information) tweets, regretful posts are becoming more prominent.

Celebrities are also in a much bigger eye with this problem.  The damage is done when you hit that send button because there are countless media following your every step waiting to screen shot anything new. Deleting it will only admit that you shouldn’t have done it and it will say a lot about how you react to certain situations.  Sometimes, it’s better to talk to people about your problems instead of the internet.  The media will go after you to get the full story and your publicist will work overtime, stressing to figure out how exactly to spin this to the media.  As publicist, this is what we do but don’t make this a habit or we will fire you!  Yes, publicists can fire clients too.  Sometimes, celebrities do it just to get more publicity around themselves for their latest project.  Posting a picture and then deleting it three minutes later is pointless, but not when you’re famous with a motive.

If you aren’t a celebrity and you’re constantly doing regretful posts, you may want to consider actually having a REAL social life where everyone will not need to know about your business.  You can’t have a social life with the internet!  Even your friends get tired of seeing your dramatic posts over mostly little-to-nothing events.  Ask yourself this before your next post: “Do everyone that follows me need to know about this?”

I regret posting things in anger.  What have you regretted about posting on your social media?