9 Best Practices for Corporate Blogging

9 Best Practices for Corporate Blogging

Blogging can be a great opportunity for some organizations and brands to enter the social media world and thereby put their best foot forward on behalf of their company/product.  But before you jump head first into the blogosphere it is important to develop a strategy that helps present you in the best light while also grabbing the attention of your target audience.  Here are a few start-up tips:

  1. Grab their attention. Nowadays it seems that everyone has taken to the Internet with an opinion, viagra 100mg 10 tips or guidelines. Make sure that you start off your blog with something that is relevant to your audience and will make them want to continue reading. You’ve only got a few sentences in which to grab their attention. Make it worth their while to stay.

 

  1. Use bullets or numbered lists. Everyone loves a list whether it is 10 tips, physician bullets or just visually pleasing in the layout.  You are competing for everyone’s time and attention spans are waning, so the setup of you blog is very important.

 

  1. Develop keywords.  For search engine optimization (SEO), your keywords matter especially in the title as well as the tips themselves.

 

  1. Use hyperlinks. In addition to using strong keywords, the use of hyperlinks aids tremendously in spreading your blog post throughout the Internet.

 

  1. Write about what you know. Everyone is an expert in his/her field so use this platform wisely. Learn how to teach others, how to arrange and present your thoughts in an organized fashion.

 

  1. Provide advice. Position yourself as the guru or specialist in your field. With experience comes knowledge and it is important to pass this knowledge along to others. Blogging offers a perfect outlet.

 

  1. Drive traffic. Blog through other social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook

 

  1. Watch your length. Blog posts are 250-600 words long according to the industry-accepted standard. The more frequently you post, the shorter your post should be.

 

  1. Keep the posting schedule consistent. I try to post regularly on my blog so that followers will look at the site as a go-to place for insights from the president of a New York public relations agency.

How to Explain PR to Your Father

Picture by Ryan McGuire
How to Explain PR to Your Father

For those of you who have recently graduated from college and have had the good fortune of landing a job in a public relations agency, cialis congratulations.  But now comes the hard part; trying to explain to your family and friends what you do for a living.

I remember many years ago when I landed my first job in a New York-based public relations agency and tried to describe over the phone to my Philadelphia parents exactly what it was that I was tasked to do.  Observing that my parents were still uncertain of my exact talent, treat I decided to bring my impressive portfolio of all earned media content (aka placements) and make a formal presentation to them in Philly.

At the time, one of my clients was Mannington flooring covering. Part of my job was to get editorial coverage of its flooring in top-targeted national magazines, and I had done an admirable job.  My portfolio was filled with placements from the likes of Better Homes and Gardens, Good Housekeeping, House Beautiful, Metropolitan Home, Woman’s Day, Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.

It took the better part of an hour, but I made a formal presentation to my parents explaining how I developed a media list and a pitch letter. I went on to describe the time-consuming process of engaging the editor in my idea and what it took to close the deal.  Then with pride, I took them through my bulging portfolio and explained the process involved in obtaining each and every glossy magazine article.

They smiled and nodded in what I assumed was recognition of the time consuming, long drawn out process and its results…the placement. I even went so far as to explain the difference between earned media and purchased media (advertising), and again they nodded in recognition of the perceived difference.

They seemed duly impressed and I was relieved that I had so admirably explained what I did for a living.

Then, a few weeks later, there arrived an envelope from my father containing the ripped out full page advertisement from Mannington floorcovering with a little hand-written note at the top, “Great job, darling.”

And my parents were not the only ones who were confused with what I did for a living. Throughout my life, whenever I was asked what I did for a living, and replied “public relations,” you could count on it that within a brief time, if the social situation allowed, the person would invariably turn and query, “Isn’t that like advertising?” To which I am now forced to reply, “Exactly.”  I surrender.

 

Public Relations Agency ABCs

alphabet soup
Public Relations Agency ABCs

They say “It takes a whole village to raise a child.” Well, prostate it takes an entire bowl of alphabet soup to implement our role as public relations practitioners. Here’s a guide to your public relations agency ABCs:

A= Advertise, Advise, Agency, Amplify, Analytics
B= B2B, Blogger, Branding, Brochures, Bottom Line, Budget, Business Development
C= Cause-Related Marketing, Collateral Materials, Communications, Conferences, Consumer, Content, Core Values, Corporate Communications, Corporations, Curate, Counsel, Crises Management, Crowdfunding
D=Deliverables, Digital
E= Earned Media, Education, Efficiency, Evidence-based, Events
F= Facebook, Feature Articles
G= Global, Gorilla Marketing, Granular
H= Hacker, Hands-on, Hazard Analysis, Head Hunter, Honesty, Humility
I= Integrated, Integrity
J=, JavaScript, Job Description, Job Enrichment, Job Performance, Job Security, Joint Venture, Just in Time, Justification
K=Knowledge-based
L=Leverage, Literature
M= Market Entry, Marketing Plans, Marketing Research, Media, Media Tours, Media Training, Metrics, Messaging, Monetize, Multiplatform
N= Narrative, Negotiate, New Business, New Media, Newsletters, News Syndicates
O= Organic, Outbound, Outcomes
P= Performance, Pinterest, Platform, Positioning, Presentations, Press Releases, Product Launches, Program, Public Relations, Publicity
Q= Qualify, Qualitative, Quantitative, Question
R= Reddit, Reputation Management, Research, Resonate
S= Sell, Seminars, Services, Situation Analysis, Social Media, Solutions, Speaker’s Bureau, Spokespersons, Strategy, Surveys
T= Tactics, Traction, Trade Relations, Traditional Media, Transparency, Twitter
U= Uncontrollable Costs, Uncontrollable Factors, Underutilization, Unintended Consequences, Unique Opportunities, User Friendly, User ID
V=Value Proposition, Viral Marketing
W= Website, Wire Services, Workforce, Workplace, World Wide Web, Worst Case Scenario
X= XmR Chart
Y= Yahoo!, YTD (Year to Date)
Z= ZBB (Zero Based Budgeting), Zero Growth

Tips for the Replacement PR Intern

Hand holding a piece of paper with printed Internship on it.
Tips for the Replacement PR Intern

By: Dayna Sorrento

One of the hardest parts of leaving a current internship is making sure all of your ducks are in a row, drug including the replacement intern. Picking out the “new you” is not easy, search especially when they have so much to learn.

Here are some tips you should leave for the replacement intern:

Make a good first impression. First impressions mean everything. Most people can get a good read on a person within minutes of meeting them. That is why starting off strong and on a high note is important. So, arrive to your internship early, show a strong work ethic, and just be yourself.

Soak it all up. Internships are a one-of-a-kind experience, so value each and every internship that comes in your path. Each one shapes you into the kind of worker you will become and adds another layer onto your resume. The purpose of internships is to learn, so try to do all the learning you can!

Learn from your superior. Your internship mentor or supervisor is there to help guide you throughout your internship experience. Use that person as a tool and a resource! They are established in the industry for quite some time, so they know what they are talking about. Learn from their mistakes, understand their successes, and even pick their brains on ideas and industry topics. Anything you can gain from your internship experience will be useful to you at some point.

Asking questions is valuable. Asking questions is a good thing, and is something your employer wants to be hearing from you. It shows you are interested and engaged in the tasks you are working on, and it displays your crave for learning.

Go the extra mile. Putting in extra time or effort really does go a long way, especially for your employer. If you are willing to stay an extra half hour, or do some extra research on a project, your employer will notice and appreciate it. What you give is what you will get in return.

 

Why PR Interns Should be Paid

Internship.OR
Why PR Interns Should be Paid

As owner of a New York-based public relations agency who has been working with college-age interns forever, decease I wanted to go on record saying that it is time that the rest of you realize that they are not slaves, shop nor in indentured servitude.   If they are providing a valuable service, cialis well, then they should be compensated for it, and not just with college credit.

My favorite adage is this: If you pay them then they will come.

When I first went out on my own 15 years ago, and had no paid staff, I quickly discovered the benefits of intern laborers—they work hard, they can accept a lot of responsibility and they should be paid for their work efforts.  And from the beginning I decided to pay them an honest hourly wage—even if they were receiving college credit for the internship.  I even threw in free lunch just to grab and keep their attention.

So, here’s why I strongly believe that you get what you pay for:

  1. If you pay them they will come. At the beginning I knew I needed cheap labor, though not free. I asked a number of colleagues who like me had tiny start-ups, and to a man/woman they all agreed that I would have better attendance, participation and happier interns if there were paid. They were right.
  2. Mentoring is the key. Since the starting hourly wage and free lunch were still not enough in my opinion, I knew that from the beginning I had to make their internship worthwhile.  Therefore I always made sure to provide them with the following:
    1. Responsibility
    2. Accountability
    3. Credit for having a brain
    4. Dedication/loyalty
  3. Valuable opinions. It is important to understand that although these are young people working for you, that they offer valuable insight into the mindset of Generation Z, those born after the millennials—and this can sometimes add an additional dimension that you might not have thought about. Don’t be afraid to ask them for insight.
  4. Internships can lead to jobs. I have often provided invaluable leads and job referrals to my interns and also have served as a valuable reference to them—more valuable in some ways then payment, one does not replace the other.
  5. Foot in the door. Companies that offer unpaid internships often barter that it’s a way for the college student to get a foot in the door.  Excuse me, but how is the intern going to pay for the shoe on that foot without a decent hourly wage?
  6. Death knell for college internships. This is what the “other side” is providing as a reason not to pay interns for time worked.    Washington is trying to regulate it so that companies that currently take advantage of college kids are penalized for it.  Although I myself am not a big believer in Big Brother interfering with my business, this should certainly cause those companies who are abusing college kids to start rethinking their policies.

 

What is PR?: 7 Public Relations Definitions

What is PR
What is public relations?

For an industry that does so much to help define its clients and their industries, it is an unfortunate turn of events that our own industry has such a vague understanding among many audiences. When I first told my parents I had entered into the field of public relations they went about telling all of their friends and family that their daughter had made it big in the Madison Avenue world of advertising—yup, advertising. Like so many others, they had no idea what public relations was. And who could blame them? Especially when our industry has continued to evolve over the decades and has never settled on just one basic definition. See for yourself.

  1.  Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics. PRSA
  2. The activity or job of providing information about a particular person or organization to the public so that people will regard that person or organization in a favorable way. Merriam-Webster
  3. The profession or practice of creating and maintaining goodwill of an organization’s various publics (customers, employees, investors, suppliers, etc.), usually through publicity and other nonpaid forms of communication. These efforts may also include support of arts, charitable causes, education, sporting events, and other civic engagements. BusinessDictionary.com
  4. Public relations is the opposite of advertising. In advertising, you pay to have your message placed in a newspaper, TV or radio spot. In public relations, the article that features your company is not paid for. The reporter, whether broadcast or print, writes about or films your company as a result of information he or she received and researched.
    Publicity is more effective than advertising, for several reasons. First, publicity is far more cost-effective than advertising. Even if it is not free, your only expenses are generally phone calls and mailings to the media. Second, publicity has greater longevity than advertising. An article about your business will be remembered far longer than an ad. Entrepreneur
  5. Public relations (PR) is the practice of managing the spread of information between an individual or an organization (such as a business, government agency, or a nonprofit organization) and the public. Public relations may include an organization or individual gaining exposure to their audiences using topics of public interest and news items that do not require direct payment. This differentiates it from advertising as a form of marketing communications. Public relations is the idea of creating coverage for clients for free, rather than marketing or advertising. Wikipedia
  6. Public relations is the art of managing the spread of information about an individual or company is disseminated to the public, and attempting to frame that information in a positive light. Investopedia.com
  7. A basic definition of public relations is to shape and maintain the image of a company, organization or individual in the eyes of the client’s various “publics.” What is a “public” exactly? A public, in PR terms, is anyone who ever has or ever will form an opinion about the client. Money

Tips for When You Interview at a PR Firm

Interview.PR
Tips for When You Interview at a PR Firm

OK, story so you got yourself that interview with a public relations agency. Now what do you do?
1. Review their website. I can’t stress enough the importance of becoming familiar with the agency, its philosophy, client categories, client list and work samples. From this you’ll be able to discern whether this is the shop for you. Also, if the agency is savvy, it routinely posts to its blog—read them—what is their point of view on industry issues?
2. Prepare 3 questions. At the end of an interview I always ask a potential employee if s/he has any questions—and to my surprise, the majority say “No thanks. You’ve covered everything.” Well, that’s not good enough. I don’t care what you ask as long as you ask something; this shows me that you can communicate, think on your feet and that you’re capable
3. Due diligence. It is important for you to implement due diligence. This means becoming a detective and finding out everything you can about the firm’s reputation, working environment and staff members. Do they have a good industry reputation? Have they won awards? How happy or unhappy is the staff—ask your friends, someone is bound to know someone who has worked there—but don’t ask current staffers, you never know. And what kind of work reputation does the president and top executives have?
4. Google search. Atta girl. You know have valuable an Internet search can be whether ferreting out a potential new guy or restaurant. Well, now’s the time to implement a search on the company itself—how does it hold up and compare to competitors? What is its reputation and how have they managed it?
5. Decide on the appropriate attire. If you are interviewing for that fashion boutique you had better look the part because in addition to everything else, you will be judged on your style and presentation. Not that other public relations agency specialties don’t demand a good appearance; like a business suit for the financial agencies and leggings or jeans and heels for the funky digital firm.
6. Arrive early. It’s always wise to get to the destination earlier than needed. In this way you’ll never be late for an interview—which can be a real turn-off. Go for coffee, take a walk around the block. Then get yourself together and go gettum!!

Blame It on El Niño: When Good PR Goes Bad

el nino
Blame It on El Niño

After El Niño conditions were declared in March and the Climate Prediction Center’s forecast predicted El Niño’s continued strengthening during the summer and fall, viagra 100mg I think it is safe to say we are well within the time period where everything will be blamed on El Niño.
It rained on your wedding day? El Niño. Had an outdoor picnic ruined by a late afternoon thunderstorm? El Niño. Was it hot …during the summer? El Niño.
Blame It on El Niño has even developed into a board game.
A weather pattern partly linked with El Nino had turned winter upside-down across the U.S. during a week of heavy holiday travel, sale bringing spring-like warmth to the Northeast, ask a risk of tornadoes in the South and so much snow across the West that even skiing slopes have been overwhelmed.
In a reversal of a typical Christmas, New York reached a toasty 70 degrees the day before Christmas with some New Yorkers actually sporting shorts and t-shirts.
But the sad truth of the matter is that the real culprit of this topsy-turvy nightmarish weather is not El Niño, but climate change. Although some people continue to deny its existence, climate change is wreaking havoc on the planet and because of ignorance, or just the need to create a scapegoat, many are blaming it on El Niño.
In an idealized world I would gladly implement a joint press conference for El Niño and Climate Change to present their difference to the world at large. But sometimes you can take a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.

Free Book Offer From Amazon Kindle: November 23—24th

Free.PR
Free offer available on Amazon Kindle

THEY SAY YOU ALWAYS REMEMBER YOUR FIRST.

TJ Sacks, ask award-winning writer and owner of a New York-based public relations/marketing communications agency that bears her name, has self-published her first non-fiction entitled “Slick the Cat: The Adventures of a New York City Kitty,” available free as an ebook on Amazon Kindle November 23—24th. After that, the book will be on traditional sale through Amazon.
The last thing that I was thinking about was adopting a cat. On the fast-track executive path at a New York public relations agency, I had no idea that a business trip to the West Coast, which included a visit to my sister’s home, would serve to introduce me to the wonders of a cat.

THE CAT THAT STOLE CHRISTMAS

The one constancy in my life, Slick was there throughout my acclimation to New York, my marriage and to its eventual dissolution. Slick was a true adventurer whose antics included learning to walk on the wild side via a leash, scaling the mountains of Vermont, killing Hamlet, being diagnosed with asthma, seeing a cat therapist, and quite literally stealing Christmas.
But it was his unswerving loyalty, his enormous capacity for love, his hilarious sense of mischief and adventure that helped transform my life. He taught me that it was alright to let go, to reach for new adventures and to not allow things that I couldn’t control get the better of me.
Today I share her life with Jonny, the fourth cat to have owned me. Yet, years later it is Slick, my first, who had the strongest impact on my life. He was there during my transformative years, and he helped me to make it through them with a smile, a laugh and sometimes, a few tears.
I hope that you have the opportunity to read and enjoy my book—although it would be helpful if you were a cat-lover to begin with.
The book is available on Amazon. It can be read on any device (IOS or Android) or PC or Mac with the free Kindle app available on Amazon website. You don’t need to own an ereader—you can read it directly on your computer/laptop. And don’t forget to leave a comment/review.

New York PR Exec Launches Debut Non-Fiction Book

slick the cat 2
The cat who stole Christmas

THEY SAY YOU ALWAYS REMEMBER YOUR FIRST.

TJ Sacks, medical award-winning writer and owner of a New York-based public relations/marketing communications agency that bears her name, patient has self-published her first non-fiction entitled “Slick the Cat: The Adventures of a New York City Kitty, buy ” available as an ebook on Amazon Kindle.

The last thing that I was thinking about was adopting a cat. On the fast-track executive path at a New York public relations agency, I had no idea that a business trip to the West Coast, which included a visit to my sister’s home, would serve to introduce me to the wonders of a cat.

THE CAT THAT STOLE CHRISTMAS

The one constancy in my life, Slick was there throughout my acclimation to New York, my marriage and to its eventual dissolution. Slick was a true adventurer whose antics included learning to walk on the wild side via a leash, scaling the mountains of Vermont, killing Hamlet, being diagnosed with asthma, seeing a cat therapist, and quite literally stealing Christmas.

But it was his unswerving loyalty, his enormous capacity for love, his hilarious sense of mischief and adventure that helped transform my life. He taught me that it was alright to let go, to reach for new adventures and to not allow things that I couldn’t control get the better of me.

Today I share her life with Jonny, the fourth cat to have owned me. Yet, years later it is Slick, my first, who had the strongest impact on my life. He was there during my transformative years, and he helped me to make it through them with a smile, a laugh and sometimes, a few tears.
I hope that you have the opportunity to read and enjoy my book—although it would be helpful if you were a cat-lover to begin with.

Available for 99 cents for a limited time only on Amazon Kindle at http://amzn.to/1KWFBzD

Note: For Kindle and Android readers it is available directly from the Kindle app. For IPad and IPhone readers, download and purchase the book on the Amazon website (http://amzn.to/1KWFBzD ) and then export it to your e-reader.