Oct 21 2016
I recently had the opportunity to sit down with a couple of friends who work in today’s ever-changing media landscape (it’s a small world indeed) and pick their brains about media relations best practices and opportunities for improved communication between PR pros and reporters. While there isn’t (and will never be) a one-size-fits-all media relations approach, a few nuggets of information in particular stood out to me:
1) Be Brief, Be Intriguing
Our clients have a story and we want to tell it—sometimes too much of it. Reporters work on tight deadlines and in an ever-changing, around the clock news cycle. If we don’t have the time to read a three page email, then they certainly don’t. Value intrigue over volume. Craft a succinct, enticing email (a couple of paragraphs at the maximum) and aim to pique their interest. “Some of the best pitches I’ve received were three, maybe four sentences,” one contact told me. So what does that mean? It means the pitch should be direct, it should get to the point quickly and it should have a clear benefit to the recipient and to his or her audience. “Think of it…
Oct 7 2016
Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love, is a polarizing figure. Some even consider her whiny and self-indulgent. But I find her refreshingly honest, amusing and inspiring – especially her advice on cultivating a healthy relationship with creativity.
I’d like to share a few pointers I gleaned from her newest work of nonfiction, Big Magic. Anyone with even a glimmer of creative curiosity can take these nuggets to heart.
There are no shortage of occasions for fear to creep in and hold you back. But if you try to fight that fear away, your creative focus will slip quietly out the back door. Instead, Gilbert’s advice is to get more comfortable coexisting with fear in creative endeavors. In other words, you can let fear tag along on your creative road trip, but don’t let it backseat drive you off the road.
Oct 5 2016
How healthcare communication professionals can drive the top line while protecting the bottom line.
For healthcare PR and marketing professionals, intentional communications has never been more important to the brand. Unprecedented consolidation in the industry continues as providers shift their business models from being rooted in volume to driving value. What’s more, technology has changed the way consumers, patients and even employees communicate, seek information and define “the news.”
For healthcare communicators, these changes will fundamentally impact the way people perceive and experience your brand. Not to mention creating new risks to manage. The way you communicate can make or break your brand. In fact, according to a report published by Harvard Business Review, based on a global survey of nearly 600 executives across health and other industries, effective communications was identified as one of the top three factors most likely to bring success. And it’s worth noting that it ranked second only to delivering a high level of customer service.
The good news is that most healthcare providers already are focusing on delivering a higher level of service, primarily through patient experience initiatives. The bad news is that most are not investing in enhancing communications. So while healthcare communicators have traditionally been thought of as promoters of the top line, today’s healthcare market requires them to be equally adept at protecting the bottom line.
Building reputation through change
Sep 23 2016
There, I said it… And the Buzz Bin did not burst into cinnamon-y flames.
In all seriousness, although terrifying, we have T-9 weeks and T-13 weeks until Thanksgiving and Christmas are at our doors (respectively).
What does that mean for a communicator like yourself? It means now is the time to solidify those holiday campaigns and ship them out the door for implementation.
However, in case you have a little wiggle room in those merry marketing plans for innovative thinking… I asked my esteemed colleagues to consider upcoming trends in the consumer products marketplace that we can expect this coming holiday season.
Take a gander:
Sep 22 2016
At a recent doctor’s appointment, my physician told me a story about a woman who needed treatment, but left in the middle of the appointment, proclaiming, “That’s not what the Internet said!”
Because we live in an age where consumers can find almost anything they’d like online, sometimes it’s hard to determine who to trust. I was recently reminded of this when the news came out that The American Academy of Pediatrics strengthened its warnings about prescribing codeine for children because of reports of deaths and risks for dangerous side effects including breathing problems. Even though the dangers have been presented, studies suggest it is still commonly prescribed by doctors and dentists despite the risks and lack of evidence that it works to relieve coughs.
So when a doctor prescribes your child a medication that you’ve read several warnings about, what do you do?
One colleague told me that she has no problem talking with her physician about issues like this. It helps build trust and makes her want to continue
going back to the same doctor. And in an instance like this, there are several alternatives for children.
Another colleague chooses to
Sep 21 2016
The very definition of the word trend means to veer in a general direction or to show a tendency. Below are five beverages on my radar for the coming months, rooted in hard data but sourced from what I’m seeing and hearing in the New York scene.
The surge of nutritionally-aware (if not nutritionally-balanced) cocktails is imminent. You read it here first. We’ve seen this theme gain momentum in the culinary community with fresh, season-driven menus. This philosophy is extending into beverage programs as well. Two examples:
-Mixologists are increasingly using natural natural sweeteners like maple syrup as a healthy and tasty alternatives to refined sugar in cocktails. Here are 27 examples, courtesy of Eater and bar programs around the country.
-Opening next week, Rouge Tomate Chelsea, with its avant-garde SPE-certified food and beverage program, is featuring cocktails (and mocktails) with fresh ingredients like carrot and cucumber juice and chia seeds.
Whether high-brow or low-brow, large format bottles are showing up on more home and restaurant tables. There are also restaurants who are…
Sep 9 2016
Back-to-school means another year of fresh books, backpacks and binders. But in 2016, purchasing each of these items is far from basic. With the evolution of digital media casting a halo on our everyday lives, it’s no surprise that parents are spending more and more using their mobile devices when it comes to back-to-school shopping. Brands are very intuitively using those mobile screens as another money-making method to feed into consumers’ habits. So, just as seasons change, trends do too. There are brands that are evolving from typical marketing methods by tapping into digital apps or social media to target parents in an insightful way with back-to-school incentives and tips, which not only boosts sales but leaves parents, and of course their kids, satisfied.
Back-to-school preparation may be perceived as a monumental event. And with each year that passes, it just keeps getting bigger. According to AdWeek and eMarketer, back-to-school sales in the U.S. are expected to increase 2.6 percent this year, which means sales for the season may total around $828.8 billion. A separate study reported by Adweek and released by GfK and Facebook IQ, notes that more than 60 percent of adults in a recent survey