More than 5,000 press releases are issued each day and reporters get roughly 100 pitches daily via email. So, how can you produce a release that stands out from the crowd? That was the question tackled by Mandy Menaker, head of PR and brand development for Shapr, and Erin Burke, director and vice president of APCO Worldwide, at the PR News Press Release Writing Workshop at the Yale Club in New York.
Leave it to a media company to offer a mini-case study in media relations. ESPN cut around 100 jobs on Wednesday, about half of which affected on-air talent. While the cuts were expected, they went deeper than many industry-watchers anticipated. Thanks to ESPN’s transparency about the layoffs, many of its talking points in its prepared statements became the foundation of coverage from media outlets.
Twenty-six words. That’s all it took for 21st Century Fox to announce star host Bill O’Reilly’s departure from Fox News on April 19: “After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel.”
As readers know, media pitching guru Michael Smart advocates taking a personal approach to targeting reporters. Still, Smart explains that there’s a fine line between personalizing a pitch and becoming too personal for a business situation. It’s also crucial to know when and where to personalize a pitch.
The departure of a leadership figure from a brand is not often smooth on the PR front. It may signify internal conflict, failure to meet expectations or simply a lack of interest on that leader’s part in continuing to build the brand. In the wake of three major role changes at brands in the past week, we examine the official messages surrounding the occurrences and the media’s interpretation.
Getting earned media just got a little bit harder. Magazine publisher Time Inc.’s revenue woes continue. “Smelling blood, potential acquirers have been circling the company for months,” according to a report in the New York Times. The pool of full-time journalists may soon get a little shallower.
Every brand tailors its image on social media. Every brand engages in crisis management on social media. From intranets for internal communications to publicizing CSR, social media is at the fore of what we do—except for media relations. Somehow, many PR professionals are still timid to venture beyond email when contacting journalists. It’s an understandable instinct. People don’t like their social life mixing too much with work. But social media made it easier than ever for PR pros to stay involved with journalists, and that kind of relationship now comes with the territory for them.
It’s official: Snap Inc. has gone public. Today, the parent company of Snapchat began trading under the ticker symbol SNAP, a day after pricing its eagerly anticipated IPO at $17 a share. That might’ve been a conservative estimate: When shares began trading this morning, they opened at $24 a share, which would value the company at more than $30 billion. But the real question hanging over Snap isn’t about its short-term luster, but its long-term prospects.
“Flack” is an ugly word to those of us in the public relations discipline, and it seems that for a while—thanks to the principled work of those in modern PR—it had been riding an ebb tide out to sea. That tide may now be coming in again; The Washington Post, Politico and Wired, among others, used the term in reference to White House press secretary Sean Spicer, in effect the nation’s PR-pro-in-chief, in his first week on the job.
What’s the secret sauce for injecting authenticity into today’s competitive college market? A solid influencer program, according to some. PR News spoke with Christina Sponselli, director of social media at University of California, Berkeley, about the school’s influencer recruitment and relationship-building strategy. Sponselli will be speaking at length on influencer marketing at PR News’ Digital Summit on Feb. 24 in Huntington Beach, CA.