communications



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November 11, 2012

The Problem With Pay-for-Play PR

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

Pay-for-play PR, or “PR by the pound” is topical again. For years, it’s been on the radar as an alternative to the traditional way of billing among PR agencies, which is a monthly retainer representing either actual or estimated time spent to reach client goals. But though such pay-per-publicity-placement work has its place among start-ups…
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November 5, 2012

“Brand Journalism” and Storytelling: How PR Pros Must Adapt

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

We in the public relations agency biz have spent lots of time debating whether journalists make the best PR people. It used to be that ex-journos were hired in narrow roles based on skills or pedigree. At a large agency where I once worked, they were invited to the big pitch to weigh in on story potential,…
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October 19, 2012

Which Brands Are Winning The 2012 Election PR Race?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

This election year has brought plenty of PR fodder, and not just for media and political pundits. As always, it offers opportunities for brand marketers and PR experts to jump into the race. Yet, election tie-ins are tricky, particularly during such a partisan time. Not all are winners. From bad to brilliant, here are some…
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September 26, 2012

Words To Avoid For PR Pros and Princess Bride Fans

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, technology

Although I’m a grammar and word usage nerd, I rarely blog about it, mainly because others do it so well, and for PR pros, the frequency of reminders can be tedious. Yes, certain incorrect, trite, or pompous words are irresistible complaint fodder: my personal dreads are “hone in” for “home in” or anything with “utilize”…
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September 7, 2012

How To Give A Killer Speech: Lessons From The 2012 Political Conventions

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

Most of the time, a political convention combines the best of public relations strategy, messaging, marketing, and theater. But good or bad, there are always learnings that PR pros and our clients can take to any public speaking opportunity. Here are some from my convention-watching over the past two weeks. Match the room. Politicians and…
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August 28, 2012

6 Myths of Crisis Management PR

by: in: communications, crisis management, imPRessions, reputation

In the past several weeks, brands from Burger King and Penn State to Chick-fil-A and CelebBoutique have grappled with serious reputational threats.  These days, it’s almost routine for communications pros to be managing some kind of potential crisis situation along with proactive PR programs. Yet true “crisis management” is probably a misnomer.  Though there are…
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August 24, 2012

Armstrong’s Crisis PR Is In Fighting Form

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

As evidence that he used performance-enhancing substances has gained traction over the years, cyclist Lance Armstrong always managed to stay out in front, avoiding major reputation damage. Until now. But even now, he may be down, but he’s not out. As he threw in the towel, announcing that he’d no longer contest the US Anti-Doping…
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July 10, 2012

SCOTUS And What It Means When The Media Get It Wrong

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, social media

Media mistakes happen all the time. Publicists joke about mangled names and massacred quotes, and even The New York Times – especially The New York Times – is regularly skewered over its errors and omissions. But occasionally media get it wrong in a big way, – an unforgivable, historically indelible, “Dewey Beats Truman” way. That’s…
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June 12, 2012

2012 Commencement Wisdom For New (And Old) Graduates

by: in: communications, creativity, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

There’s just something about graduation season. Even those of us whose commencements are far in the past can catch some fresh inspiration from the wisdom dispensed at the annual college rites. And for the speakers, it’s often a strategic PR move where boldfaced names look to be humorous, colorful, and newsworthy. Here’s a recap of…
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June 6, 2012

Jason Alexander’s Apology Is A PR Homerun

by: in: celebrity, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

We communications pros like to use words like authenticity, transparency, and honesty. Too often, they’re empty cliches. But every now and then, they jump out at you. Take the latest public apology to go viral. I don’t know anything about cricket, so when I read that actor Jason Alexander had called the game “gay” in…
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May 24, 2012

7 Reasons Why Your PR Isn’t Working

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

Why are some PR programs more successful than others, and what should you do when faced with a media relations program that just isn’t gaining traction? Here are a few common PR mistakes. You rely on blasting press releases rather than telling a story. “PR” isn’t shorthand for “press release.” A newswire spam strategy might…
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May 21, 2012

Jamie Dimon’s Apology Tour: Is It Enough?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, leadership, public relations, reputation

JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon’s apology to shareholders last week managed to fulfill at least three prerequisites for a public mea culpa. It was swift, it was direct, and the CEO took responsibility for the bank’s $3 billion trading loss in a hedge gone wrong. Dimon used words like “egregious,” “sloppy,” “stupid,” and “self-inflicted.”…
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May 14, 2012

Crisis Management: When The Crisis Is The CEO

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, leadership, public relations, reputation

  It’s hard out there for a CEO. Recently, we witnessed a week’s worth of drip-drip-drip coverage about Yahoo chief Scott Thompson’s resume. The gaffe culminated in Thompson’s resignation after only four months on the job. But the controversy, on the surface, wasn’t about whether he’d faked an advanced degree, or falsely claimed Ivy League…
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April 11, 2012

PR Move of the Week: Hillary Clinton (Hillz)

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation, social media

Hillary has become cool. That’s right, the Hillary Clinton who struggled through grueling Democratic primaries in 2008, only lose the ultimate prize to the maddeningly unruffled new guy, seems to be having the last laugh. And we thought Obama was the cool one. It started when two Hillary fans, PR specialists Stacy Lambe and Adam…
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March 29, 2012

JetBlue’s Response to Pilot Breakdown: Light On Crisis PR Strategy?

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, crisis management, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

All airlines are prone to rough PR weather, but JetBlue seems to have more than its share. Maybe it’s because during a time of rapidly deteriorating expectations, many of us still expect more of JetBlue. It’s that rare industry bird, the customer-friendly airline. An oxymoron. So when it goes off-course, that’s news. There was the…
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March 7, 2012

What’s In A (Brand) Nickname?

by: in: advertising, branding, communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations, reputation

Al Ries’ recent column in AdAge, “When It Comes To Names, Corporations Just Aren’t People” got me thinking about the PR of brand nicknames. Corporations may not be people, but their brands can get pretty darn close. That’s why “pet” names for products and companies can be powerful, from the classic shorthanders like Coke and…
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February 29, 2012

PR Lessons From The 2012 Campaign

by: in: communications, Crenshaw Communications, imPRessions, public relations

Since the primaries began, I’ve been thinking about the PR strategies we’ve witnessed so far during this election season. On the surface, campaign PR doesn’t offer many similarities to corporate and brand communications. After all, it tends to be more localized, more combative, and, recently, shockingly negative. Yet, campaign 2012, as well as the ones…
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