PRWeek 2013: PESO Principles – Register for Less!

August 7, 2013

250x180peso13-spons_368016Business Wire is proud to be a sponsor and exhibitor for the upcoming 2013 PRWeek conference. This year’s theme is PESO, the fast-evolving mix of Paid, Earned, Shared, and Owned media that is driving an increasingly integrated and convergent communications landscape. The old definitions of marketing and PR are being torn up as clients build their reputations through storytelling, content, and sharing.

Event details

When: Tuesday, September 17
Where: Convene (formerly The Sentry Centers), 730 3rd Avenue, New York, 10017
Time: 8.15am – 6.30pm (6.30pm-9.00pm is the 40 Under 40 Dinner)

Featured Speakers

Jeff Jones, CMO of Target; Simon Sproule, head of global marcomms at Nissan; and News Corporation strategy guru Raju Narisetti head a stellar lineup of C-suite executives and agency thought leaders to lead a conversation about paid, earned, shared, and owned media and how to maximize this mix to supercharge your brand, corporation, or organization. You will hear from cutting-edge experts, immerse yourself in best practice, and make vital connections in a program that mixes practical workshops, interactivity, blitz talks, onsite social media, and networking with thought-provoking keynotes and panel discussions.

Interested in attending? You can save $200 off the $795 conference registration price by registering today, and using the promo code BW200 at checkout. To register, visit https://www.etouches.com/ereg/newreg.php?eventid=61096 .

We look forward to seeing you there!


Business Wire Phoenix and Keith Yaskin Show How to Tell Your Story with Video

March 7, 2013
by Billy Russell, Client Services Representative, Business Wire/Phoenix

At Business Wire’s February 27 workshop, “How to Dynamically Tell Your Company’s Story With Video,” Keith Yaskin, who moderated the event, had an opportunity to provide his own insight into the creative process of crafting a video to tell a company’s story.

Three teams were each assigned to produce a video for a specific company Keith had outlined, and were asked how they would tell their story and what visuals would be highlighted. Two teams were given the task of creating a video for a mining company in order to boost its image to gain public support for a land swap.  One team was given a small, local dentist’s office who specialized in kids’ dentistry.  Both industries may have a difficult time portraying a positive image for different reasons:  Mining companies can receive public backlash for environmental reasons, and a dentist’s office is a classic phobia for many people.  So, how to tackle these issues?

According to Keith, there is absolutely no ONE right way to tell a story.  There may be ten, twenty, a hundred different ways to tell a story, all of which can be equally effective.  The two teams provided with the task of the mining company had different ideas, ranging from who to interview, to where to shoot the interview.  Should it be outside on a sunny day?  Who would be interviewed?  The town’s mayor?  An environmentalist professional?  Everyone had their own ideas, none of them wrong, but all greatly different in achieving the goals.

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Event photos by Billy Russell, Business Wire

Keith then shared a video he had personally produced for a mining company in the same situation. His was shot almost entirely within the mine, about 70% of it being with the workers and interviewing them, and 30% within the town.  He explained to the workshop attendees that he wanted to highlight the hard work that the employees handle within the mine in order to boost the company’s public image.  When it comes to interviews, he told us, he much preferred working with non-actors in order to get a more naturalistic demeanor from them.  With actors, he said, sometimes they come off TOO good, too polished and confident.  He told the groups that he preferred the reactions and statements of everyday people as their conversations come across more warmly.

The second team was asked to create a video for a pediatric dentist’s office to portray the professional positively and warmly; themes were discussed on what would be covered and who would be interviewed.  Some ideas were to interview the child coming to visit and asking how they liked coming to the dentist’s office, making sure to get great, big smiles on camera to highlight his/her happiness with the visit and the professional work on their teeth.  Other members of the team thought it would be a good idea to spend some time talking about the equipment used, to show how state-of-the-art their techniques for dentistry are, to ease potential clients’ minds about what to expect.

After the discussion, Keith shared another video he had produced to demonstrate how he handled the same task.  He allowed the dentist to speak freely about how he comforts his clients coming in for checkups and building rapport with them.  Keith noted one of his techniques to filming is to, after an interview is conducted, have the dentist continue to wear his microphone and to shoot video of him going about his business so that he can get some off-the-cuff moments and the children visiting his office that looks and feel entirely real and unrehearsed.

The workshop closed with a Q&A session where our attendees had a chance to clarify any questions that they had about the creative process and how to work within reasonable budgetary restrictions.


Remembering Heroes of Yesterday; Communicating to Win Today

February 11, 2013

by Bernadette Morris, President/CEO, Black PR Wire

Bernadette Morris, President/CEO, Black PR Wire

Bernadette Morris, President/CEO, Black PR Wire

Remembering the heroes of yesterday comes naturally to us today. Malcolm X, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Rosa Parks — these are some of the people who ignited a spark. They each had a goal and purpose in mind. And that is why their legacy continues to shine. Recognizing them and others during Black History Month is a ritual that we follow every year. They lived their lives with purpose and made life easier for those of us that are still here.

Heroes of yesterday represented our race. They wanted us to live our lives as equals, despite the obstacles they faced. These men and women fought against injustice and stood up for humankind. They knew how to communicate to win and follow their dreams relentlessly – which is what we all must do if we do not want to be left behind. Planning for growth is inevitable, it seems. In celebration of Black History Month, let’s follow behind the path of our heroes of yesterday and live our dreams!  Here are a few tips to help YOU communicate to win and grow your business:

  •  Guarantee it – Guarantee your customer that your products/services are of the highest quality.  Go beyond the call of duty to ensure that you are meeting all quality standards.
  • Recycle your ideas – Keep track of your ideas.  You never know when one of them may work for a specific project or initiative.
  • Work your marketing magic – Always develop a winning marketing plan and adhere to the objectives that were outlined in the plan.
  • Show and tell – Don’t just tell people about what you have done, show them.  Provide them with visible promotional products and product samples.
  • Use creativity – Creativity plays a major role in helping companies to accomplish their objectives.  Be creative in all of your project endeavors – strive to be unique and distinct.  The more your product/service stands out from the competition, the more you will be noticed.
  • Be dependable – Make a conscious effort to always be dependable and honest in your business dealings.  Customers tend to be loyal to those they can count on.
  • Enter as an expert – Learn your market and become an expert in your chosen field.
  • Show you know – Show your customers that you know what you’re talking about.  Convince them that you know your product and what is best for them better than anyone else does.
  • Commit and never quit – Always remain committed to your goal and remember your reason for being in business.
  • Stick to your strengths – Remember what you’re good at and continue using your natural talents to take you to the next level.
  • It it’s not broken, fix it anyway – Always search for new and innovative ways to do the same tasks.  You’ll find that a little creativity can produce amazing results.
  • Be ready for change – Be prepared to deal with the constantly changing business climate.

Want to hear more from Bernadette?  Register to attend the Business Wire and Black PR Wire 2013 Minority Leadership Series.


A Timely Tribute to The Titans of The Public Relations Industry

February 4, 2013
by Neil Hershberg, Senior Vice President, Global Media/Business Wire
Neil Hershberg

Neil Hershberg, SVP – Global Media

They are part of what television journalist Tom Brokaw famously called “The Greatest Generation,” whose foresight and fortitude helped create an industry whose importance and influence continues to experience unbridled growth.

These pioneers of the public relations industry — Daniel J. Edelman, Lorry Lokey, and David Steinberg — shared much in common: deep journalistic roots that strongly influenced how they approached their professional careers; personal values that didn’t fluctuate with financial success; and bold visionary outlooks that helped transform modern communications.

Edelman’s recent passing provided pundits and practitioners alike the opportunity to reflect on his enormous contributions to an industry that he helped define. His legacy, Edelman, is today the world’s largest independent public relations agency, with 4,600 employees in 63 countries, and revenues of $660 million annually. Its scope and impact continue to expand exponentially, building upon the solid foundation that Edelman cast in 1952.

Daniel J. Edelman

Daniel J. Edelman

Edelman, along with such other industry trailblazers as Harold Burson, Al Golin, and David Finn, collectively laid the conceptual cornerstones for contemporary corporate communications, which today encompasses everything from marketing communications, to government relations, to investor outreach.

Many of the tributes written by Edelman’s colleagues and competitors paid particular homage to his strong sense of ethics, creativity, ambition, humility, and independence.

These timeless traits also characterized two other industry legends, both of whom I’ve had the privilege of working with: Lorry Lokey, the founder of Business Wire, and David Steinberg, the long-time president of PR Newswire.

While Edelman focused on refining and expanding the principles of public relations, Lokey and Steinberg are best known for building the platforms that provided the framework of today’s expansive global communications networks, or “newswires,” as they are commonly referred.

Like Edelman, Lokey and Steinberg also were accomplished journalists, with Steinberg winning the prestigious Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business Journalism in 1958 as a young reporter with The New York Herald Tribune. But they will primarily be remembered for creating the information pathways that integrally linked companies, the news media, and the financial markets. They helped set the stage for what eventually evolved into the SEC’s Regulation Fair Disclosure, which today ensures that all market participants have equal, simultaneous, and unrestricted access to market-moving information that may influence their investment decisions.

Business Wire’s CEO Cathy Baron Tamraz, who worked for Lokey for 26 years, often says that her former boss — and mentor — taught her many valuable lessons about the important role that newswires play in facilitating the news cycle, and the absolute importance of embracing new technologies to ensure effective communications.

“We function as the conduit between the company, the media, and the investment community,” said Tamraz. “It is therefore vital that we get our clients’ news out when they want and where they want it, and that our networks remain on the ‘bleeding edge’ technologically, reaching all market participants at the same time.”

“Lorry taught me to take this role very seriously, 24/7, 365 days a year,” Tamraz added. “We handle routine earnings and product launches, as well as obituaries, crises and just about any type of news that can and will move the markets.”

If the PR profession were to ever create a pantheon of industry icons, then Edelman, Lokey and Steinberg – along with fellow industry stalwarts Burson, Golin and Finn – should be enshrined as charter members.

Fueled primarily by passion and principle, these legends helped set the standards for an industry that has come to impact virtually every aspect, sector and geographic region of the world we live in.

While the public relations industry will always be in a state of perpetual evolution, it is important that we all take an occasional step back and recognize the enterprising men and women who had the courage and ability to turn their dreams into reality, and in the process helped create an industry of truly infinite possibilities.


Three Tips on Staying Relevant during the Holiday Slowdown

December 20, 2012
by Alexander Howard, Editor, Business Wire/Nashville

The holidays can be a slow time for PR departments. Vacations have begun in earnest, and marketing pushes can seem futile while potential customers are busy visiting relatives. But the holidays can be a prime time for companies to stay relevant with a few simple tips:

‘Tis the Season

Tie your message into the spirit of the season. Journalists are more open to timely stories, so concern yourself with releases that spread holiday cheer, forecast the year ahead or review the year past. Tools like Google Trends can help you get a jump on popular search terms. Keep in mind that the lead time for end-of-year feature stories can be fairly long, so know your target media’s editorial calendar, too.

Go Social

Reach out—the holidays are about getting together with friends and family. Major companies use the holidays as a time to bolster their social media presence. Twitter and Facebook are commonly cited by journalists as prime sources for stories.

Consider the Calendar

Heed the holidays. Generally, the advice is that earlier in the week is better, but the holidays can shake up schedules and reorganize routines. US markets (and many others) are closed for Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, which both fall on Tuesdays, so market-moving information might be best embargoed for later.

Maintaining your media strategy throughout the holidays will ensure that business will wax well into the new year.

Does your company have a unique PR strategy or messaging tips for the holidays? Let us know in the comments!


Los Angeles Media Breakfast: Content Marketing & PR for Startups

December 13, 2012
by Luis Guillen, Media Relations Specialist, Business Wire/LA

Starting a new business can be a challenge. Companies are faced with creating interest, establishing brand awareness, and promoting their product to potential customers all from scratch. Marketing is always evolving, and new companies must adapt quickly and efficiently to the new worlds of content marketing and social media.

Business Wire Los Angeles recently invited a panel of industry professionals to speak about content marketing and PR for startups. This well-attended breakfast event generated some very insightful tips from our expert speakers:

Emily Scherberth (moderator) - Founder and CEO, Symphony PR & Marketing Inc.

Dana Block - Account Director, Consumer Technology, Allison+Partners

Dena Cook - Managing Partner, Brew Media Relations

Kevin Winston - Founder & CEO, Digital LA

Kyle Ellicott – Startup & Entrepreneur Columnist, TechZulu/Co-Founder, Techhustlers.com

Start with what’s important. Know who you are, what your company’s message is, and how you differ from the competition. Dena Cook suggested “knowing your objectives, painting a very clear picture to clients, and marching to the same beat” as important steps for companies to help establish credibility. Startups have a great ability to be authentic with the media; remember to give your company a personality.

Do NOT limit yourself. Get out and network —  attending social mixers and meetups is a great way to make yourself relevant. Kevin Winston of Digital LA advised to “find out what the public is talking about . . . certain stories will get picked up depending on ‘what’s hot’ in the media.” Go to events, even if you don’t have a story to pitch, and get involved. Build relationships with journalists and bloggers —  this is an area where many startups fail.

Relationships are important. Journalists are your friends, and have great influence. When pitching the media, do your homework: know the person you are seeking, read their work, and do not blind pitch anyone. Get to know them on a personal level and think long-term. “Establish relationships; it’s important to build a network rather than getting one article written out of it,” said TechZulu columnist and entrepreneur Kyle Ellicott.

Content Marketing is all about objectives. Be mindful of your target audience. “We consume news on-the-go,” said Dena Cook of Brew Media LA, so develop customer-centric content and make that process “organic and as real as possible.” Content marketing should be built around your brand and should always be “relevant, interesting, and easy to understand/make sense,” said Kevin.

The landscape has changed the way we consume information and communicate our message. However, an old rule still applies: don’t put all your eggs in one basket. For startups, the best strategy to maximize exposure is for content marketing to supplement your press release campaigns.

Give your company a personality, establish your voice and start a thoughtful conversation.


MEDIAmobz Interviews Tom Becktold and Laura Sturaitis on PR/Marketing Challenges

October 30, 2012

Earlier this month at the PRSA International Conference, our partner MEDIAmobz conducted a series of video interviews with thought leaders, in which they asked them to comment on some of the challenges facing PR and marketing practitioners today.

In one entry of their PRSA Thought Leadership Series, MEDIAmobz asked several people including Tom Becktold, SVP-Marketing for Business Wire, “Does your company’s multimedia content ambition outpace your available resources?”

In another entry, Tom and Laura Sturaitis, EVP-Media Services & Product Strategy, were asked, “What are some issues that people are faced with in the communications industry today?”

Click over to each to watch Tom’s and Laura’s answers along with those of other PR professionals.

 


The Daily Dog Interviews Marketing SVP Tom Becktold on PR’s Role in the Marketing Process

October 25, 2012

The Daily Dog, as part of their “Exhibitor Insights” video series from this month’s PRSA International Conference, spoke with Tom Becktold, our SVP Marketing, about how PR pros are in a perfect position to drive companies’ greater marketing messages, how social media has given PR a bigger presence in C-suite decision making, and how PR should be guiding marketing and advertising. Check out Tom’s interview with Richard Carufel below:


13 Tips To Sharpen Your Communication Skills in 2013

October 18, 2012

Raschanda Hall, Global Media Relations Manager, Business Wire/Chicago

By Raschanda Hall, Global Media Relations Manager, Business Wire/Chicago

There is a distinct buzz in the air during the final quarter of the year.  In the PR community, this growing sound is our nagging reminder to sit down and think about new business, budgets, cuts and strategies for 2013.

We’re no different, so our team looked at our own best practices to empower you with 13 tips to make you a better communicator in 2013.

13. Commit to commenting. Stop being a social media voyeur.  Be active by liking and commenting on posts you read.  The comments can be as interesting as the posts; many people read them and they’re a good way to make connections.

12.  Give before you ask. No matter what service you provide, even the well-intentioned invitation can be seen as a demand for time, effort, and attention. Take this tip from Chris Sacca, advisor to some of the top social media companies, “If you’re insightful and helpful, people will want to be around you.”

11.  Refine your elevator pitch. How? Practice, edit, repeat. If you pitch TV stations you know assignment editors are willing to listen, but you’d better be able to get your point across fast! Call five assignment desks, and chances are, you’ll hone your pitch quickly.

10.  Subscribe to industry newsletters and READ THEM. PR/communications newsletters such as CommPRO.Biz, MediaBistro,  Smart Brief on Social Media and Ragan’s PR Daily offer helpful suggestions for improving your written and verbal communication skills and keep you up on industry trends. You might recognize a misstep you consistently make, such as avoiding an overused word.

9.  Get involved with an industry organization.  Don’t just attend events – join a committee, serve on the board, or simply volunteer your time as you can. Be sure not to limit yourself to PR/IR groups.

8.  Learn more about the offerings of your service providers. OK, this one may be a bit self-serving, but don’t shoot the messenger.  Many PR-related service providers are constantly advancing their catalog of offerings, providing free reporting, or creating complementary products to go along with the services they’re most known for.  Take the meeting and find out what else they offer for you to maximize your relationship.

7.  Have an SEO discussion with your web team, your wire vendors and your content creators. If one conversation isn’t enough, have however many it takes for you to understand search engine optimization (SEO) basics and start using these strategies to improve the visibility of content you produce for the web.

 6.  Take a class or seminar.   Many schools and professional societies offer continuing education classes at a low cost, and some even offer free sessions. Consider classes in photography, advanced web technology or web design.  You can even brush up with a business writing or grammar class.

5.  Attend a journalism conference. The price tag of some PR conferences can be off-putting.  Directly across the aisle our industry peers are putting together great and pertinent programming at a fraction of the cost.  Check out conferences organized by the Online News Association, Society of Professional Journalists or one of the journalists-of-color member organizations like NABJ, the National Association of Black Journalists.  You’ll learn a lot and make some new contacts while you are at it.

4.  Share your experiences. If you have no time to sit on a board or a committee, offer to speak at one of their programs on a  topic you know matches the interests of their members.  In PR groups, speakers on the topics of social media, measurement, crisis communications, media relations and brand strategy are highly sought after!

 3.  Invite a blogger out for coffee. If you don’t work with bloggers, meet up with an editor, producer or member of the Twitteratti who you value having a relationship with.  Even if they can’t meet face to face, the check-in email is a nice gesture and way to keep a relationship top of mind even if you’ve moved on to cover new areas.

2.  Be an active listener.  Multi-tasking, while great in so many ways, contributes immensely to our eclipsed attention spans. Make an effort to listen more closely.  Practice by playing a prerecorded webinar and not clicking away; or watching or listening to an on-air personality you don’t agree with and resisting the urge to turn away or blurt out.  Just listen.  If you improve your listening skills you might pick up the other half of what most people don’t hear when someone is speaking.

1. Immerse yourself in mobile.  Mobile marketing is the future, but the future is today.  To leverage this market for you and your clients you need to use it. Download news apps and visit the mobile rendered pages of your favorite brands. Then make sure your own messaging is mobile friendly.


New Study Reveals Trends in Mobile News Consumption

October 1, 2012
by Phil Dennison, Senior Marketing Specialist, Business Wire

A joint study by The Economist Group and the Pew Research Center for Excellence in Journalism, released today, explains how tablet and smartphone ownership is changing how people read news. The study, called “The Future of Mobile News: The Explosion in Mobile Audience and a Close Look at What It Means for News,” is rich in detail on topic after topic, including ownership trends, paywall effectiveness, mobile ad effectiveness, article depth, and more.

One table reveals what times tablet users tend to view news during the day, depending on whether they check news once or multiple times. The implication for corporate communicators: Make sure you’re releasing your news at the right time for your target media to see it, act on it and plug it into their own news hole.

Elsewhere, the study outlines the differences in news consumption among tablet user who use mostly apps, mostly their browsers, or a combination of the two:

Again, based on this information, communicators can decide whether it’s in their interest to target web-based online publications, to ensure that their news shows up in mobile news apps, or even whether they should be developing their own apps.

The complete study is full of data and information that will help your company develop its communications, public relations, marketing and mobile strategies. It’s worth a read by all professional communicators, journalists, and anyone connected to the news business.


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