As part of a small, independent agency, members of the public relations team at Stone Ward have the opportunity to be fully immersed in client projects, from brainstorming to ultimately driving earned media for campaigns and initiatives. As such, PR team members are encouraged to look for new projects and responsibilities that pique their interests and are frequently called upon to perform digital, creative, media and broadcast-centric functions on select projects, further expanding their skill sets.
Professional development is extremely important at Stone Ward. One of its 20 Principles is “always be a student”, acknowledging that creative output is only as good as input. Team members are encouraged to participate in workshops, conferences and seminars (e.g., AMIN membership development events, SXSW, PRSA conferences, etc.) to learn best practices, and they frequently sign up for industry webinars in order to better understand trends, discover new tools and gain insight on pertinent issues. Stone Ward also holds agency-wide, bi-monthly training events wherein both internal and external team members share key learnings.
The agency is keen on sharing its own best practices. One of its pivotal thought leadership events is an invitation-only Digital Swagger event, where a robust panel made up of agency staff and clients shares tips for advancing digital marketing efforts. Last year, the panel discussed actionable steps for making a difference in online traffic and engagement through SEO, how to harness research and data to curate the best user experience, how data design should work and top ideas for content management.