Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving from PR/PR

So the holiday season has officially kicked into high-gear (although I feel like I began seeing Christmas decorations in my peripheral back in August, but this may just be a personal problem.)  With Thanksgiving a day away, I’ve decided to mix things up a bit: I present to you a comprehensive list of things that we at PR/PR are thankful for:

Russell Trahan:

In no particular order, the top three things I’m thankful for this year are:

1.  My health, I’m relatively healthy for my age
2.  My relatives, they are a healthy distance away
3.  Amanda, Lindsay and Carter.  Without these three, I wouldn’t have all the other things (like happy clients) I’m thankful for but can’t mention since we’re limiting this to three.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Amanda Tucker:

1. My health
2. York peppermint patties* (blog manager's note: this is no surprise)
3. Friends & family

Lindsay Durfee:

I am grateful:
1.  (This time of year especially) for the great weather in FL.  No snow!
2.  That my family all live close by (but not too close!)
3.  That my husband likes to cook

Carter Breazeale:

1.  Manning the blog means I can list as many things I’m thankful for as I want and elaborate ad nauseam.  Take that, office-mates! 

2.  Jason Segel championing for and writing a brand new Muppets movie.  Seriously-this just may make the holiday season for me.  Nothing says, ‘great time’ like Animal.

3.  Energy Fusion coffee at 7-11.  Extra caffeine AND Guarana?!  This rocket-fuel analogue is a certifiable godsend.  Expense reports never seemed so exciting at 9:00am!

4.  The Internet!  A never-ending channel for information, inside jokes and the panacea for my directional maladies.  A man never asks for directions.  When in doubt: Google it.

5.  My nephew and niece.  Little balls of energy.  They both keep me entertained and exhausted for hours on end.  Watching a child figure the world out one moment at a time is astounding.

6.  Chipotle burritos.  Take everything that makes you happy.  Put it in a tortilla.  Adorn with copious amounts of Tabasco sauce.  Smile for the remainder of the day, even if someone cuts you off in traffic.

7.  My PR/PR family.  What an enjoyable work environment.  The lighthearted environment I walk into every morning makes coming to work a blessing; something everyone should be lucky enough to experience on a daily basis. 

8.  The Atlanta Braves.  The bane of my existence year in and year out since I was old enough to comprehend what ‘failure’ was, and yet I cannot help feeling a renewed sense of hope come every April.  By July I will be cursing their name far and wide and regretting their inclusion on this list.   

9.  Jeff Mangum and Neutral Milk Hotel.  This man’s music was the soundtrack to my high school years.  Everyone should own a copy of In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, or at least listen to it once in their life.  Thankful he got over his agoraphobic paranoia and has begun playing live music again.  See you in Atlanta in February!

I sincerely hope everyone has a happy and safe Thanksgiving. 


Friday, November 18, 2011

Communication is King

The manner in which you communicate can transcend gaps and torch bridges.  Interpersonal communication is an integral facet of corporate life; it is the difference between lost contacts and signed contracts, and effective communication in every level of your operation should be your first-step to ensuring quarters in the black.   Whether it’s timely client follow-up calls or confirming that your supervisor actually received your time-off request, communication is the oiled cog that keeps the wheels of business turning.

I consider myself a ‘swing-man’ of sorts in our office.  I’m always open to assisting any of my coworkers in pressing tasks, and this requires a high-level of communication to guarantee the workload is taken care of efficiently and effectively.  Collaborative efforts are a frequent occurrence here at PR/PR, whether it’s crafting a pitch or formulating a marketing strategy for one of our clients.  This demands advanced knowledge and familiarity of everyone’s responsibilities and their respective client’s platforms, as well as clear channels of communication to keep performance at its peak.

Any communicatory lapse, especially those you may deem ‘rudimentary,’ can lead to the proverbial wheels falling off.  Nothing spells incompetence like rushing out the door on Friday afternoon before responding to a time-sensitive email or returning a phone call.  Errors of this nature can create a snowball effect, leaving an avalanche of clean-up required on Monday.  Limit them and you’ll notice an increase in productivity, as well as a tangible decrease in company-wide Advil consumption!

Keeping a tight lead on your business begins with indoctrinating everyone involved with the mind-set that effective communication is king.  When questions or issues arise, do not go it alone: convey your concerns to those around you, and create a forum for collaborative solutions.  The corporate machine only runs as smooth as its operators’ allow, and communication keeps the joints and pistons greased so breakdowns are few and far between.

-Carter Breazeale

PR/PR Public Relations

Friday, November 11, 2011

Avoiding the Pitfalls of Verbal Gaffes

Verbal gaffes can sink your efforts like a lead balloon.  There’s nothing that spells ‘ineptitude’ like misspeak, factually or politically incorrect statements, or as President Barack Obama and French President Nikolas Sarkozy experienced this week – getting caught making disconcerting remarks on a live microphone.   It can take what feels like eons to construct a profitable career and mere seconds to tear it all down.  In the instantaneous information age, maintaining composure and putting your best face forward at all times is paramount.

It seems like yesterday when the world was enthralled with the prospect of a telephone you could take with you, let alone the idea that a phone would contain a camera where photos could be captured and immediately shared via text message and across social media platforms.  These innovations immediately transformed the way we interact, but also allowed for our ‘lesser’ moments to be recorded and distributed in seconds.  The days of the incognito gaffe are over: everything you say and do has the propensity to end up online and potentially ruin you.  Tread lightly.

Rick Perry experienced one of these ‘oops’ moments two days ago during the Republican debates, confusing his own policies and fumbling over his words.  In many pundits’ eyes, this colossal episode of ‘verbal 52 card pick up’ spelled the end of Perry’s nomination run, regardless of any political damage control conducted after the fact.  The video went viral on YouTube and Facebook, generating thousands of hits in a matter of minutes.  Suffice to say; at this point Perry’s political aspirations now look more like the Hindenburg than a viable campaign.   

It should go without saying that you should always strive to be on point and maintain your message, but sometimes in an effort to show candor or a moment of confusion, verbal gaffes may occur.  The key is to minimize them and the subsequent fallout which may occur and tarnish what you’ve painstakingly built.  Your name, your brand and your livelihood depend on it. 

-Carter Breazeale

PR/PR Public Relations

Friday, November 4, 2011

Print Media: The Bastion of Publicity

We’ve all heard The Buggles song, Video Killed the Radio Star, but in the world of PR: have radio and television killed the value of print media?  Do the benefits of voice and facial recognition across radio waves and TV tubes dilute the worth of name branding and article placement in newspapers and magazines?  The immediate answer can be summed up in a resounding, unequivocal ‘no way;’ and in the world of publicity, it’s actually quite the opposite.

Here at PR/PR, we field a great deal of calls relating to potential clients seeking publicity via television or radio exposure.  Whether it’s a career financial consultant looking to break into the realm of professional speaking or an author with a forthcoming book release, we receive queries about radio and television PR from professionals across a broad spectrum.  While there are certifiable and quantifiable merits to exposure through both of these mediums, the probability of sustained visibility is simply not as high as print. 

Radio and television may provide measurable spikes in phone calls and buzz surrounding your platform or topic, but they do not deliver the publicity plateau that published articles in newspapers and trade and business magazines will.  With print media, you are forever emblazoned within those pages, which reach the hands of industry leaders and event planners seeking keynote speakers for their annual meeting.  There will be no struggle to recall the name behind the refreshing ideas, as it is right in front of the reader, along with contact information and links to your information online. 

Music videos did not spell the end of the radio star, and television and radio have certainly not started the doomsday clock for print media. Remaining relevant in a world of fleeting attention spans is a challenging proposition, but having your articles in board rooms and in the hands of professional decision makers definitely makes the course less daunting.  Publicity is about constant, focused visibility; and the base of sustaining your brand and name starts on a newsstand or between the covers of a magazine.

-Carter Breazeale

PR/PR Public Relations