Viewing entries tagged
media relations

Cross-Cultural Communication

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Cross-Cultural Communication

As the world continues to shrink, you’re going to have increased chances of working with international brands and media. Keep these tips in mind as you interact with people from different locations, cultures and personalities.

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Bravo, Arizona State! Converging business, PR education

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Bravo, Arizona State! Converging business, PR education

This morning, I read in PRWeek that Arizona State University is hiring former Edelman U.S. President CEO Mark Hass to teach strategic communications in both the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and the W.P. Carey School of Business in the fall. For years, PR agency leaders have been asking for this convergence...

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Inside Scoop: The Dallas Morning News

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Inside Scoop: The Dallas Morning News

Last week, a few members of the Lewis Public Relations team got the inside scoop about what has been happening at The Dallas Morning News straight from Editor Mike Wilson. The first outside editor for The Dallas Morning News in 35 years, Wilson’s résumé boasts 30 years in print and journalism, which he is drawing on to make some big changes at the organization.

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Meet the Media: Jessica Golden, CNBC

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Meet the Media: Jessica Golden, CNBC

Lewis Public Relations works with media professionals every day, and we value the relationships we’ve built along the way. In today’s “Meet the Media,” I’d like to introduce you to Jessica Golden, a field producer covering sports business at CNBC. Jessica and I worked together on piece featuring Topgolf at last month’s PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando. 

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The 10 Commandments of Corporate Communications

10 Commandments Final

10 Commandments Final

By Shelby Tidwell The evolution of global news media has affected news outlets everywhere, including the Associated Press (AP) – the largest and most respected news organization in the world – which has altered its corporate communications department to contend with ever-changing media standards.

Ellen Hale, former senior vice president and director of corporate communications at AP, recently spoke to PRSA Dallas and Press Club of Dallas members about her time at AP and offered “The 10 Commandments of Corporate Communications.”

  1. Corporate communications should be the canary in the coal mine. You should be the first to indicate if a situation could be misinterpreted by the media.

  2. If it looks like the issue has wings, get in there fast and disrupt it before it gains traction with the media or public.

  3. Don’t count on anyone calling for comment or clarification; assume they will run with their own interpretation of the story or image.

  4. Be proactively transparent.

  5. If you’re wrong, fall on your sword – fall on it fast and completely.

  6. Explain, explain, explain!

  7. Know when to stop explaining. Get in, get out and don’t extend the issue any longer than you have to.

  8. If you don’t have shareable content, you’re sunk.

  9. Social media can be a curse, but it has proven to be a friendly beast – take advantage of it!

  10. Cultivate relationships with those in the media who can help.

If there’s a trend in Ellen’s list, it’s that honesty and transparency are not optional. The bigger and more powerful your organization is, the more likely you are to be under scrutiny. Don’t give your critics the chance to misinterpret your message – but if they do, be the one to correct it.

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A New Brand Takes Flight

Congratulations to our client and friends at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, who officially launched the entity’s new brand this morning. Blake, Ashley and I were there for the big brand reveal – complete with an unveiling of the new logo, media interviews and plenty of photo opps. But the truth is, while the public first saw DFW’s new logo and look today, passengers, media and influencers have been introduced to the new brand for several months now.

You see, DFW Airport did branding right. It’s not about a logo. It’s bigger than Pantone colors. A true rebrand is a refreshing of the organization’s approach to its business.

Since CEO Sean Donohue joined DFW in 2013, he, the board and his leadership team have been aggressively pursuing excellence at the world’s fourth busiest airport.

DFW close up-2
DFW close up-2

In three years, Sean has added several new international routes, giving Dallas Fort Worth residents (and tons of connecting passengers) access to destinations like Hong Kong, Beijing, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and all over the world.

If you’ve been to DFW recently, surely you’ve noticed the major renovations that are finishing up, thanks to the TRIP program.

Follow @dfwairport on nearly any social media channel, and you’ll notice an immediate and personal response to any comment – whether positive or negative.

And, this year, the Airport hired a new senior vice president totally in charge of improving the customer experience.

Now that is a rebrand.

So, again, congratulations to DFW Airport on the public launch of exciting changes that have been in the works for some time. We’re looking forward to journeying with you and our other agency partners – including Alpha Business Images, MRR & Associates and The Marketing Zen Group – on this new brand path.

Be sure to follow DFW Airport’s on Periscope for videos of today’s event and more to come!

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The Best of Both Worlds

CC at Acumera

CC at Acumera

The past six months have been VERY busy here at LPR. My LPR travels have taken me down to Austin quite a bit lately to work with one of our clients, Acumera, a growing technology company that provides network connectivity, security and visibility for convenience stores. We’ve been working with Acumera since 2012, but they recently decided to up the ante with our relationship. They needed an internal marketing resource, but didn’t want to worry about the learning curve or overhead costs associated with adding a full-time team member. Since I’d been on the account for more than three years, I was able to jump in and fill the role, giving Acumera the benefits of having both an agency team and a dedicated “internal” resource to support Vice President of Sales and Marketing Tom Yemington.

We’ve accomplished a LOT in the past six months. In addition to managing traditional public relations activities, including news releases, thought leadership and media relations, I contributed to marketing strategy, message development and sales collateral development. We’re also about to launch a new Acumera website. (Stay tuned!)

The whole experience has reinforced our philosophy that the most successful agency-client relationships are those that truly integrate agency team members into the client’s culture and business. It’s the best of both worlds.

Here’s a quick video from Tom on why he decided to use a PR agency to support his marketing efforts.

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Goodbye, Steve Blow - What Dallas Morning News' buyout means for public relations

Last Friday, many Dallasites – LPR included – were surprised to hear that the Dallas Morning News will cut 40 reporters and editors as a stipulation of its recent buyout. Now, the paper's downsizing wasn't a shock - it's happening more and more these days as the media landscape continues to evolve. In fact, the American Society of News Editors released its annual survey yesterday, reporting a net job loss of 3,800 news professionals in 2014. In the DMN's case, the names on the chopping block stopped us in our tracks.

Long-time columnist Steve Blow, airlines/aviation reporter Terry Maxon and other tenured DMN mainstays are on the list. Dallas media staples. Well-respected journalists. In a number of instances, friends.

For public relations professionals, media consolidation and downsizing impacts the relationships we've cultivated. No longer can you pick up the phone and have history, name recognition and understanding with the person on the other end. There's a familiarity that comes with working alongside a reporter for many years.

But, more than losing a contact, it also means a new level of education and assistance will be needed for the next generation of reporters.

Terry Maxon has covered DFW Airport and local airlines, such as Southwest and American, for years. The next aviation reporter – if that specific beat is retained – will need to come up to speed. PR pros can make their lives easier by offering background information, sending along relevant trends and providing interviews, photos and facts when requested. Sometimes just offering help is appreciated.

This isn't unique to the DMN. It's happening across newsrooms in every channel of traditional media throughout the world. For this Dallas PR agency, though, we know the Metroplex's media landscape will never quite look the same.

Photo by AlBakker via Flickr

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Professional Development: Make the investment.

Last Friday, two team members from Lewis Public Relations attended the PRSA Dallas Pitching Boot Camp with renowned speaker Michael Smart. While PRSA offers its members many options for professional development, we have to say this was one of the best so far. Michael Smart is a former journalist turned independent communications trainer. This wasn’t our team’s first interaction with Michael. While we choose to participate in a variety of professional development offerings, all of us have benefited from Michael's weekly emails, past conferences and webinars...and our latest encounter did not disappoint.

Michael Smart Pitching Boot CampAt the PRSA Dallas Pitching Boot Camp, participants ranged from university students studying public relations to seasoned media and high-level spokespeople from around the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Michael talked through the pitching basics, nuances of pitching today’s influencers, bloggers and overworked journalists, and the breakdown of your story. Without giving away the recipe to his secret sauce, we’d like to share some of the tried and true tips even the most tenured PR gurus can find useful.

 

Newsworthiness of the Pitch – Consider all aspects of your pitch.

What makes it relevant? Why now? Who should know about this? What side of the story can you tell to connect to your audience?

Targeted Outreach – Using mail merge? Survey says, “Don’t!”

Don’t waste your time or your media contact’s time unless it’s the right fit. Think about it: Journalists want to feel special, just like you and your clients. You’re more likely to make contact if you put some thought into who and why you are pitching.

Follow-up – Don’t be discouraged.

If you know it’s a good story, do make timely, appropriate follow-ups. If you don’t push for the coverage, who else will? During the Pitching Boot Camp, Michael also cautioned not to discredit the value of a cold call.

ThinkstockMost professional organizations offer a plethora of development training options throughout the year. While we don’t recommend signing up for every opportunity out there, it would behoove you to take note of what is offered. Investing in yourself directly correlates to your professional growth and client successes. Other LPR team members have made notable investments, such as pursuing Accreditation in Public Relations and earning an executive M.B.A. from University of Texas McCombs School of Business.

We recommend keeping an open mind and watching for worthwhile opportunities coming up, whether that means pursuing additional education or participating in seminars and conferences, especially if Michael Smart is headed to your area soon. Reading the quality content from respected industry professionals’ blogs can sometimes function as a quick way to receive condensed advice or tips on the latest how-to. We’ve curated a list of the best blogs for public relations and marketing here.

Do you have any suggestions on quality training or professional organizations? Comment below or engage with us on Twitter at @LPRDallas.

For more information on joining a Public Relations Society of America chapter, look hereFor more information about Michael Smart, we encourage you to visit his website and be on the watch for his upcoming blog.

(Photo Credits: Michael Smart PR, LLC; @LPRDallas Twitter Feed; Thinkstock via CBS DFW)

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