Upcoming Business Wire Events: Killer PR Tips in Phoenix, Digital Etiquette in Charlotte, Hyperlocal Journalism in Pittsburgh

July 19, 2011

Upcoming Business Wire Events

Adapt or Vanish: Five Killer PR Tips to Stay Relevant

Hosted by Business Wire Phoenix

PR is no longer relegated to drafting press releases and bylined articles. Today, PR pros support business goals, connect and support customers, amplify demand-generation efforts and take social listening to a whole new level to move the company’s brand forward. Join Business Wire Phoenix & Cindy Kim, Director of Marketing and Social Media for JDA Software, for this session on how social business is impacting the PR world. Cindy will outline five killer strategies to help you make an impact that goes beyond just PR, based on real-world lessons. This event is free for all attendees.

Thursday, July 21 at 11:30 a.m.
1475 N. Scottsdale Rd., Alliance Room, #365, Scottsdale, AZ 85257

To register: RSVP to Billy Russell at (480) 990-9942 or email billy.russell@businesswire.com

Minding Your Mobile Manners – Etiquette Tips for the Digital Age

Hosted by Business Wire Charlotte

Join Business Wire Charlotte for breakfast and a panel discussion with experts in the field discussing the topic: Minding Your Mobile Manners – Etiquette Tips for the Digital Age. A panel of professionals will share their experience and expertise, presenting both PR and media perspectives. Panelists include Eric Frazier, staff writer for the Charlotte Observer and Scott Hepburn, president of Media Emerging, a public relations and marketing firm. The event is free for all attendees.

Thursday, Aug. 4 at 7:30 a.m.
Dilworth Neighborhood Grille
911 E Morehead, St., Charlotte, NC 28204

To register: RSVP to Penny Sowards at 704-552-1590 or email penny.sowards@businesswire.com by Monday, Aug. 1

Hyperlocal Journalism: Latest Buzz Word or Developing Trend?

Hosted by Business Wire Cleveland [Pittsburgh Event]

There appears to be a trend toward “hyperlocal” news coverage. What does this mean, exactly? Has there been a fundamental shift toward more community news coverage? What is the best way to pitch your news to media outlets covering small local communities? Find out what hyperlocal means for PR professionals with our panel, which includes Bobby Cherry, Reporter, Sewickley Herald; Cindi Lash, Regional Editor, Western Pennsylvania, Patch.com; and Gina Puppo, Community Coordinator, Trib Total Media. This event is free for all attendees.

Wednesday, Aug. 24 at 8 a.m.
Rivers Club
One Oxford Center, 301 Grant Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15219

To register: RSVP to Matt O’Donnell at matt.odonell@businesswire.com by August 17, 2011.

Business Wire holds dozens of local events every year. We bring local media members and industry thought leaders to your market to discuss today’s most relevant topics, from trends in today’s newsrooms to writing for SEO. Events are usually free of charge to members. For more upcoming local Business Wire events or to see what’s coming up in our award-winning webinar series, visit BusinessWire.com. Follow live updates from Business Wire events on Twitter: hash tag

Event Recap: Chicago-area New Media Opportunities

August 16, 2010

by Andrea Gillespie, Account Executive, Business Wire/Chicago

Abbie Sullivan

Abbie Sullivan, Client Services Representative

Successful media relations in Chicago over the last several years has meant both strengthening your news eye to find and pitch the most relevant stories, and finding new places, people and forms of media in which you can get those stories picked up.

While some news holes seems to be shrinking in and around Chicago, many new print and online opportunities have emerged.  These sites are empowering the community to share and own the news.
On Wednesday, August 4th, Business Wire hosted a media breakfast with the editorial management staff behind some of Chicago’s newest media outlets.


Moderator: Raschanda Hall, Global Media Relations Manager, Business Wire


L-R: Raschanda Hall, Tracy Schmidt, Kyle Leonard, Tara Tesimu

Triblocal/Kyle Leonard, Managing Editor

Triblocal is your spot on the Web to find out about local news and events. The site encourages everyone to become contributors by writing stories, posting events to community calendars and posting photos. All contributions will be posted on the site; however, many are chosen for the weekly print edition and even the Chicago Tribune. Key Takeaways for Communications Professionals:

  • All stories must have a local tie to them.
  • You can post stories, photos and videos.
  • Everyone loves looking at videos on YouTube – hyperlink to your YouTube channel.
  • Leonard prefers you post your story or event to the site first, then email him directly if you think your posting would be a good fit for the print version. He also suggests you follow up via phone.
  • Chicago Tribune editors read Triblocal, and some stories found on Triblocal will make it to the Tribune pages.
  • Pitches should be publicists telling a good news story. Every organization has a “Locks of Love type story,” tell them yours.
  • With events, publicize the event two weeks out, but then further publicize the event after it takes place. Send photo galleries and event highlights, especially if there’s a fundraising goal. Many people will see the event after it takes place and still want to donate to or learn more about your cause

ChicagoNow.com/Tracy Schmidt, Editorial Director

ChicagoNow.com is an online community of Chicago bloggers covering a variety of subjects including Chicago politics, fashion, sports, food, music and events. The site was created by the Chicago Tribune Media group but is run by its own full-time staff. Key takeaways for communication professionals:

  • ChicagoNow wants their bloggers to become part of their communities by writing opinions and information about a specific community. Bloggers are also expected to write as often as possible – which means they need content.
  • When pitching bloggers remember:
    • Keep it relevant to their beat.
    • Including photo galleries is extremely desirable as bloggers love having multiple photo options.
    • Follow the blogger on Twitter and friend them on Facebook.
    • Bloggers have to abide by FTC guidelines, so if you gift a blogger, they will have to disclose that information.
    • Sponsored Posts (or “pay to play”) will be noted as such.
  • ChicagoNow’s bloggers regularly speak on ChicagoNow’s radio show, which airs on WGN on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to noon.
  • Follow ChicagoNow on Twitter (@ChicagoNow) and learn about regular River North Tweetups where you can mingle and meet the bloggers.
  • ChicagoNow is always looking for bloggers. They are especially looking for someone who can blog about the Public Relations/Adverting industry and what life is like inside the agency walls.
  • If your client is an expert at something (medicine, finance, real estate, etc.) having them become a blogger is a great way to get publicity and expand customer base.

Patch/ Tara Tesimu, Regional Editor

Patch is an AOL-owned hyperlocal site now covering the Chicagoland areas of La Grange and Skokie (more than 48 additional communities are expected to launch shortly). Patch’s focus is community engagement, and they ask readers to submit their own announcements, photos and reviews. All professional editors, writers, photographers and videographers live in or near the communities they serve. Key takeaways for communication professionals:

  • If you have an event in a Patch community, post it – all calendar events go right up on the site. Two weeks is a good lead time.
  • Provide photo galleries and videos, as they will also be included and are highly encouraged.
  • Reach out to editors via the Patch Facebook sites.
  • All businesses in Patch communities have a profile in the Patch directory, so be sure to fill yours out, and add photos, too.
  • Will cover a business or person outside the community if that person has a community tie.

For more upcoming local Business Wire events or to see what’s coming up in our award-winning webinar series, visit http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/home/business-wire-events.

Follow Business Wire events on Twitter! Hash tag #bwevents

What can Public Relations Professionals Learn from TBD.com?

August 9, 2010

by Cecile Oreste, Media Relations Specialist, Business Wire/DC

TBD.com, which launched today, is taking a unique approach to providing hyperlocal news.  Unlike AOL’s recently launched Patch.com, which hired reporters to cover local communities in California, New York and other states, TBD.com will partner with more than a hundred community blogs to provide the most comprehensive coverage of the DC Metro area.

TBD.com Homepage

TBD.com, a hyperlocal news site which launched today in Washington, DC

That’s not to say that TBD.com won’t have a reporting staff of its own.  The TBD.com editorial team is comprised of several journalists from a number of traditional media, including The Washington Post, as well as new media platforms like local blog DCist.com.  What makes TBD.com different from other competitors that are also looking to provide news down to the ZIP code is its willingness to admit that no one news outlet can cover it all.

“Aggregation will play an important role.  We’re not just producing content, but will be linking to traditional media outlets and our community of blogs when they have content we’re not covering,” said Jeff Sonderman, Senior Community Host of TBD.com. “We’re taking an approach that is almost the opposite of legacy media by not keeping the traffic all to ourselves.”

In addition, TBD.com plans to use an editorial style that mirrors the format of its community blogs, which cover news about a variety of topics including neighborhood issues, food, sports and entertainment.  “Our reporters will have more of a blogger mindset.  They’ll be focused on talking to a community of users, creating short dispatches, constantly updating stories and linking to other sources,” Sonderman said.

According to Sonderman, there are a number of reasons why the blog movement has developed as much as it has.  Blogs tend to engage readers with a more personal perspective versus traditional media which adhere to a specific formula.  Blogs are also infinitely customizable and can appeal to even the smallest group of readers.

Sonderman gave the example of Allergy Life in Loudoun – a blog about child food allergy issues, written by a mother raising a daughter with life-threatening allergies.  “You’re never going to find a reporter who covers allergies in Loudoun County,” he said.  “But there happens to be a blog for that niche audience.”

What can public relations professionals learn from TBD.com’s approach to hyperlocal news?  First, we take a lesson from TBD.com’s model of aggregation.  Although you can provide journalists with valuable information, you don’t have all the answers.  Providing resources or additional credible contacts can help build relationships with journalists.

Second, engage your reader.  Press releases don’t always have to follow the same format.  Write with voice, humor, wit and get a journalist’s attention by breaking through the clutter.

Finally, find your audience – even if it’s a community interested in a girl living with allergies.  Identify who you’re trying to reach and go where they are even if it’s a small publication or local blog.


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