Category Archives: Public Relations

10 Insider Tips for Pitching Your Story to the Morning News

Chicago’s morning news shows air earlier and earlier, and local producers have to fill a combined 15 hours of news each morning. However, that doesn’t mean they are an easy sell, since these decision-makers tend to reject 95-98 percent of ideas sent them. What separates stories that air from those that don’t?

A panel, moderated by WGN’s Bill Moller, included Platform Manager Michael Batkins of WMAQ; Producer/Booker Emerald-Jane Hunter of WLS’ Windy City Live!; Supervising Producer Tracy O’Brien of CBS/WBBM; and Executive Producer Sandy Pudar of WGN, offered PR pros insider tips on the pitches that wake them up.

Pitch according to the station’s interests and reference relevant topics that were previously covered

Lackluster pitches showcase little knowledge of the person who is being pitched, the station being pitched and, worst of all, blanket generic pitches. Media experts expect PR professionals to be familiar with their shows and what they are looking for to fill their time. Even though all journalists would like to get exclusives, they appreciate that even when they are given the same guests and topics, the pitches have different spins.

Pudar suggests that PR people “become familiar with what’s being been done and refer to [topics] we’ve covered. [Let us know] you watch our show. Tell us who will be a fit for our program and why. This catches our eye. Avoid boilerplates! It’s all about relationships so show that you are aware of our personalities, our shows, our themes and reference them. Mention names!” Summon your creativity to find a newsy niche to a story.

Include visuals to tell the story

Batkins’ advice is to “Spell out the visual components of the story and show me why it belongs on television. What will we see? What can you provide? I need to know what I am going to get.”

Hunter, whose segments all live online, is a major proponent of creative pitches. “Put thought into your pitch and figure out how to make it interactive so we can have fun with it,” advises Hunter, “Check our Web pages, Facebook, and Twitter. Find ways to tie-in that pitch so it fits.” She also adds that providing a YouTube link for viewing your client on camera in action is key.

Be concise in your text

The panel unanimously admonished the audience against making long-winded or unclear pitches, which are among their greatest pet peeves. Pudar states it bluntly, “I don’t need to know everyone’s history. Just give me one or two sentences saying, ‘This is my client. This is what he can talk about.’”

O’Brien suggests that bulleted pitches are preferable, with Hunter adding that the subject line should be clear, concise and include a news hook.

Use numbers to communicate value to the viewer

“Consider the viewer benefit,” suggest Pudar, “like providing ‘five crunches to flatten your tummy immediately.’”

O’Brien agrees that putting a number with the pitch adds value. “Give me unusual facts we have not heard before, like ‘three things to know before hiring a nanny,’ for example.” She added, “Offer a two-sentence tease line then a fact sheet once you already have us.”

Enhance your pitch with social media

Assistance with social media promotion offers a slight edge. “Social media has changed media pitching dramatically. Everyone can get the word out much faster about what we have coming up and what we’ve just done, “ O’Brien explains, “We find more breaking news on Twitter and Instagram. Promise us a client who is big with social media and will blast when they’ll be on TV and retweet it to show your traffic. If you can get that done, you may get on.”

Don’t be overly promotional

Never make a pitch that is too self-serving or merely a product commercial. Moller acknowledges that “telling stories about clients may not have been something the client wanted, but if it gets them on the air via a ‘soft sell,’ it will help polish their brand.”

Be aware of each station’s specific lead times

“If you get a ‘no,’ it might just be about timing,” explains Hunter, whose guests on Windy City Live! are booked three to four weeks in advance. However, if your pitch is especially good, keep in mind that it may be archived in case they need to fill a gap at the last minute. Other guests on the panel preferred pitches with only two weeks lead time to avoid feeling overwhelmed unless there is an approaching holiday.

Do not pressure producers for an immediate response to your pitch

Another one of O’Brien’s pet peeves is being harassed by phone several minutes after receiving an email pitch. “Give me a day or two to follow up with you if I am interested,” she says, “but if I am not interested, I am not interested”

Hunter on the other hand, would rather not receive phone calls at all, “When I am on the phone, I am distracted. If it is written, I can track it down. Phone pitches never work.” Remember not to oversell, overpromise or act pretentious.

Showcase your client’s expertise

All media love when professionals are tuned into the news and can offer sources proactively. “If there is something in the news, I love to get a note in my inbox offering a source. It really makes my job easier,” said Pudar.

If you’ve seen a segment covered on a different show and have an even more qualified expert to offer on the subject, don’t be shy about pitching them as well. O’Brien says to “Know the personalities of the different anchors and try different things. Tie stories to a news peg.” She greatly appreciates expert opinions when it comes to stories that involve schools, communities, and large groups of people where “there’s a lot of action and emotion.”

Prepare your guest with proper media training

Potential guests must be passionate and comfortable public speakers who can tell the audience something they don’t already know. Under most circumstances, it is best for guests to do their interviews live from the studio rather than using reliable video conferencing such as Skype. If they can be flexible about the times they can appear, it reflects positively on you and your client. “If someone can come into the studio at 4 a.m., that goes a long way with us!” says Pudar.

Want to learn more about pitching your client to the morning news? Our ProfNet Connect service can help you showcase your client’s expertise directly to the media. Follow the link to learn more: http://www.profnetconnect.com/

Author Sue Masaracchia-Roberts is a crisis management and media relations expert and a member of the ProfNet Connect community.

MEDIA News: Media Moves at Thomson Reuters, Southern Living, Daily Mail and More…,

http://prnbloggers.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/agility-logo.png?w=127&h=125&h=125PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department makes thousands of updates to the  database of journalists and bloggers that underpins our Agility media targeting and distribution platform.  Below is a sampling of recent media moves and news from the research team.  Learn more about Agility media targeting here.

Thomson Reuters Thomson Reuters – Washington Bureau (Washington, DC): Former Washington Post Reporter Howard Schneider (@hpschneider) joins the financial team to cover the Federal Reserve.

Southern Living Southern Living (Birmingham, AL): Sid Evans has been announced as the new Editor-in-Chief @Southern_Living.

Daily Mail US Daily Mail – Washington Bureau (Washington, DC): Francesca Chambers (@fran_chambers) joins the DC Bureau @DailyMailUS as a Correspondent.

Harper's Bazaar Harper’s Bazaar (New York, NY): Lucy Silberman (@lucysilb) has been named Managing Editor @harpersbazaarus.

Washington Post The Washington Post (Washington, DC): Former St. Louis Dispatch Reporter Todd Frankel (@tcfrankel) signs on as a Financial Reporter.

Wall Street Journal The Wall Street Journal (New York, NY): Reporter Sudeep Reddy (@Reddy) has been promoted to Deputy Global Economics Editor @WSJ. In addition, Tim Aeppel (@TimAeppel) is now Senior Economics Correspondent.

MercNews Bay Area News Group (San Francisco, CA): Editor David Butler was named Editor-in-Chief for Digital First Media. Butler will oversee news content for 75 daily newspapers including the San Jose Mercury News plus weeklies & digital.

SF Examiner San Francisco Examiner (San Francisco, CA): Michael Howerton (@mchowerton) is the new Editor-in-Chief @sfexaminer.

DespiertaAmeric Univision Network – Despierta America (Miami, FL):  Paul Stanley (@PAULSTANLEYD) has joined the cast of Univision’s (@Univision) morning show (@DespiertaAmeric).

Good Housekeeping Good Housekeeping (New York, NY): Meaghan Murphy (@meaghanbmurphy) comes aboard as a new Executive Editor (@goodhousemag).

Red Alert Politics Red Alert Politics (Washington, DC): Chris Deaton (@cgdeaton) is the new Managing Editor at this conservative political site.

The New Yorker The New Yorker (New York, NY): Ex-American Prospect Web Editor Clare Malone (@ClareMalone) moves to NYC to become a Research Editor @NewYorker.

Food & Wine magazine Food & Wine (New York, NY): Sarah DiGregorio (@SarahDiGregorio) joins @foodandwine as Senior Food Editor.

Bloomberg View Bloomberg View (New York, NY): Mohamed A. El-Erian is a new daily Economics Columnist @BV.

mySA San Antonio Express-News (San Antonio, TX): Jennifer McInnis (@JenMcInnis) is the new Food & Drink Editor @mySA.

Concord Monitor News Concord Monitor (Concord, NH): City Editor Steve Leone was promoted to Editor for the @ConMonitorNews.

Mainebiz Mainebiz (Portland, ME): Beginning in early May, Peter Van Allen will begin his new duties as Editor of @Mainebiz

BuzzFeed Buzzfeed (@Buzzfeed): Molly Hensley-Clancy (@Molly_HC) is now the Business of Education Reporter.

Inc. Inc. Magazine (New York, NY): Jon Fine (@JonFine) is now an Executive Editor and David Whitford (@DavidWhitford) is Editor-at-Large.

ProPublica ProPublica (@ProPublica) (info@propublica.org): Ginger Thompson (info@propublica.org) will be joining ProPublica as a Senior Reporter.

TIME.com Time.com (@Time) (letters@time.com): Nolan Feeney (@NolanFeeney) signs on as a Reporter.

Women's Health Women’s Health (New York, NY): Jen Ator (@jen_ator), who was previously the Senior Editor of Fitness is now the Fitness Director @WomensHealthMag.

Deadspin Deadspin (New York, NY): Former Deputy Editor of Spin Magazine, Rob Harvilla (@harvilla is now the Culture Editor at Deadspin (@Deadspin).

Entertainment Weekly Entertainment Weekly (New York, NY): Kyle Ryan has (@Kyle_Ryan) joins (@EW) as Editor from Managing Editor at The A.V. Club.

Yahoo Yahoo! (@Yahoo) (media@yahoo-inc.com): Bobbi Brown (media@yahoo-inc.com) will be the new Editor-in-Chief for Beauty section of Yahoo!. Joe Zee (@MrJoeZee) will be the new Editor-in-Chief and Executive Creative Officer of Fashion at Yahoo!.

Good Morning America (New York, NY): Tony Reali (@AroundTheHorn) (gmabooking@abctv.com) has been added to the staff @GMA as Social Media Contributor. He will continue his duties as Host of @AroundTheHorn.

New York Daily News New York Daily News (New York, NY): “The Real Deal” Senior Reporter Katherine Clarke (@KathyClarkeNYC) will edit the Real Estate section of @NYDailyNews beginning 4/28/14.

ABC News ABC News (New York, NY): National Talk Show Host, Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle) joins ABC News (@ABC) as a Contributor.

PCMag PC Magazine (New York, NY): Alex Colon (@alexandergcolon) has been named the New Senior Consumer Electronics Analyst @PCMag.

Xconomy Xconomy (Cambridge, MA): Alex Lash (@alexlash) joins the team @Xconomy as a Biopharma Editor.

MEDIAware’s full weekly version can be found at: www.prnewswire.com/knowledge-center/medi…

PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department provides daily updates on Twitter (twitter.com/PRNmedia).

Detailed outlet and contact information is available at agility.prnewswire.com.

MEDIA News: Media Moves at Wall Street Journal, Time, Weather Channel and More…

http://prnbloggers.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/agility-logo.png?w=127&h=125&h=125PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department makes thousands of updates to the  database of journalists and bloggers that underpins our Agility media targeting and distribution platform.  Below is a sampling of recent media moves and news from the research team.  Learn more about Agility media targeting here.

Wall Street Journal The Wall Street Journal (New York, NY): Alice Hagge (@alicehagge) (alice.hagge@wsj.com) moves from MarketWatch to work @WSJ Real Time Desk, where she is the U.S News Editor.

WSJ Washington Wire The Wall Street Journal – Washington Bureau (Washington, DC): Ex-Washington Post Op-Ed Editor Autumn Brewington (@Autumnsan1)(autumn.brewington@wsj.com) is a new Political Editor @WSJ. Former Politico Reporter Reid Epstein (@reidepstein) signs on @WSJwashington to be a Washington Wire Political Blogger. And KSL-TV’s Social Media Director Natalie Wardel (@nataliewardel)(natalie.wardel@wsj.com) is WSJ’s new Social Media Editor.

TIME.com Time Magazine (New York, NY): Time promotes Susanna Schrobsdorff (@SusannaSchrobs) to Assistant Managing Editor and Living Editor.

The Weather Channel The Weather Channel (Atlanta, GA): Meteorologist Dave Schwartz returns to @weatherchannel after six years away.

Entertainment Weekly Entertainment Weekly (New York, NY): Chris Rackliffe (@crackliffe) has been named Senior Social Media Editor @EW. Also, Neil Janowitz is set to become the new Assistant Managing Editor.

Letterman CBS (New York, NY): Stephen Colbert will replace David Letterman when he retires in 2015. Letterman has hosted “The Late Show” (@Letterman) for 21 years.

Men's Journal Men’s Journal (New York, NY): Marissa Stephenson (@marissastphnsn) moves from Self Magazine to Men’s Journal (@mensjournal) where she is Senior Editor.

Wonkblog Wonkblog (Washington, DC): Quartz Reporter Roberto Ferdman (@robferdman) joins Washington Post’s blog (@Wonkblog) to cover consumer business, immigration and Latin American development.

Emily Miller WTTG-TV (Washington, DC): This Fox affiliate (@fox5newsdc) has added Emily Miller (@EmilyMiller) as their Chief Investigative Reporter. Emily previously worked at The Washington Times as a Senior Op-Ed Editor.

InformationWeek InformationWeek (Manhasset, NY): Alison Diana joins @InformationWeek as Senior Editor covering Healthcare Information Technology.

Marine Corps Times Marine Corps Times (Springfield, VA): Geoffrey Ingersoll (@GPIngersoll) takes on the Managing Editor role @Marinetimes.

Business N.C. Business North Carolina (Charlotte, NC): David Mildenberg is the new Editor at @BusinessNC. He was previously with Bloomberg.

New Haven Register New Haven Register (New Haven, CT): Sean Carlin (SeanCarlin84) joins the newsroom at the @nhregister as a Local News Reporter.

Breitbart News Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews): Charlie Spiering (@CharlieSpiering) has been hired at as a Political Reporter. Breitbart California was recently launched by Breitbart News. Joel Pollak (jpollak@breitbart.com) (@joelpollak) is the Editor.

refinery29 Refinery29 (@Refinery29): The new Beauty Writer for Refinery29 is Maria Del Russo (@Maria_DelRusso).

The Cut The Cut (@TheCut): Veronique Hyland (@Veroniquean) is the new Fashion News Editor at this New York Magazine blog.

Yahoo Yahoo! (@Yahoo) (media@yahoo-inc.com): Sarah McColl (@SarahMccoll) has been promoted to Editor-in-Chief of Yahoo!’s food section (@YahooFood). Paula Froelich (@PFro) is the new Editor-in-Chief for their travel section (@YahooTravel).

Bleacher Report Bleacher Report (San Francisco, CA): Baseball scribe Scott Miller (@ScottMillerBbl) signs on to cover America’s pastime @BleacherReport.

CBSSports.com CBSSports.com (Fort Lauderdale, FL): Former Birmingham News Sports Reporter Jon Solomon (@jonsol) tackles the College Football Reporter role @CBSSports.

New York Magazine New York Magazine (New York, NY): Tara Abell (@tara_abell) is now an Associate Editor of Social Media @NYMag.

Slate Slate (New York, NY): Alison Griswold (@alisongriswold), who was previously a Reporter for Strategy section at Business Insider has been named Staff Writer at (@Slate).

The Plain Dealer Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH): Debra Adams Simmons (@DAdamsSimmons) has been promoted to VP of News Development for Advance Local from Editor for the daily (@ThePlainDealer) in Cleveland.

Crain's Cleveland Crain’s Cleveland Business (Cleveland, OH): Elizabeth McIntyre is set to join the trade magazine (@CrainsCleveland) as Editor.

Chicago magazine Chicago Magazine (Chicago, IL): Terrance Noland is joining @ChicagoMag as Executive Editor from Contributing Editor for @MensJournal.

Teen Vogue Teen Vogue (New York, NY): Amada Keiser has been named Fashion Editor.

Seventeen Magazine Seventeen Magazine (New York, NY): Elizabeth Denton (@Elizabethann1) signs on as an Online Staff Editor.

Real Simple Magazine Real Simple Magazine (New York, NY): Former Huffington Post Executive Lifestyle Editor Lori Leibovich (@lorileibovich) is now the Online Editor @RealSimple.

MundoFOX MundoFox (New York,NY): Nicole Suarez has joined MundoFox (@MundoFOX) and as an Anchor for “Hoy Noticias MundoFox 13.” This is a joint project with Hoy Newspaper (@HoyChicago).

MEDIAware’s full weekly version can be found at:www.prnewswire.com/knowledge-center/medi…

PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department provides daily updates on Twitter (twitter.com/PRNmedia).

Detailed outlet and contact information is available at agility.prnewswire.com.

For Brand Messages, Distribution Matters.

Why do press releases still matter?  I tackled this question in an interview with The Pulse Network at the Inbound Marketing Summit a couple years ago.

A post on PR Daily today questions the value of press release distribution, given the declining number of journalists. [link]

So who really does read press releases these days? 

In short, the audience is still vast, and it includes all of your organization’s key constituents.  Press releases are extremely public means of communications.

  • The tens of thousands of credentialed media on PR Newswire for Journalists tally more than one million press release reads each month.
  • On PR Newswire.com, the press releases we issue garner more millions more reads each month.   Most of those readers find the content via search engines.
  • On Twitter, if you search the term “PRNewswire” you’ll see an avalanche of tweets referencing press releases – often several per minute.

Our clients tell us the press releases they issue have resulted in coverage on Good Morning America (with no pitching!),  increases in landing page traffic of more than 200%,  record app downloads and the generation of qualified leads for sales teams.   The key take-away is this:  all of your brand’s constituents are reading the PR content you distribute.  Failing to calibrate your content accordingly leaves measurable results on the table.

Distribution drives results. 

What drives these results?  Distribution.  Distributing messages beyond the realms of the journalists on your targeted media lists and your brand’s followers on social networks delivers specific and measurable results.   Well-crafted messages are found by new audiences, re-distributed across peer and professional networks and are surfaced in search engine results – often for months after the messages are originally issued.    Distribution is the key to driving ongoing message discovery and introducing your brand to new constituents.

Disappointing results?  Take a hard look at the message.

If your press releases aren’t generating results, before you blame your distribution channels, take a look at the messages.    Here are some tips for making your press releases relevant, useful and effective in today’s connected digital environment:

  1. Is your content truly interesting and useful to your target audiences?  Framing your message in the context of what your audience cares about or will find interesting will enliven your message, and prevent it from reading like a missive from the ivory tower.
  2. Do your headlines convey the messages that will appeal to audiences?  Headlines aren’t for branding.  They shouldn’t be coy.  Headlines need to arrest the eyes of your reader, and inspire them to stop, and read your message.     Keep the headline short – about a hundred characters.  Use a subhead to add the brand mention and additional detail – you needn’t be so mindful of length there.
  3. Do you embed specific and measurable calls to action toward the top of your messages?   Give your readers a path to take by providing a link to a relevant web page that will further engage them with your brand.  Invite them to read an excerpt of a white paper, view a demo or provide robust Q&A that will answer their obvious questions.    In addition to courting media coverage, the press releases you issue are also portals for your brand, and can deliver new audiences right to their doorstep.  Don’t rely on a link to your homepage that’s buried down in the boilerplate.  Make it easy for people to find relevant information, and take the next step.
  4. Is the copy you distribute designed to be easily scanned by readers on all kinds of devices, using bold subheads and bullet points to surface key themes?  Many people are reading press releases on tablets and smartphones.  Organize the body of your press release content into easy to scan chucks, and use numbered or bulleted lists to draw attention to key points.
  5. Does your PR team illustrate press releases with visual content, such as videos, images and infographics?    We really can’t emphasize the value of visuals enough.  Search engines and social networks are increasingly visual, and plain text simply doesn’t carry the same weight. Relying on plain text reduces the effectiveness of messages.

The practice of public relations today requires an increasingly deft touch.  PR Newswire’s own distribution network is designed to deliver customized content to the journalists, bloggers, web sites and media outlets that subscribe to our news feeds.    Ensuring the content they receive from us is relevant to their interests and areas of coverage is the cornerstone of our media relations programs and services.

Likewise, the development of e-mail pitches and press releases takes a similar deft touch.   But don’t leave distribution out of the picture.  If your organization wants to increase inbound web site traffic, acquire new followers, find new audiences and earn some media along the way, broad outbound distribution of your messages via a service like PR Newswire will deliver measurable results.

Author Sarah Skerik is PR Newswire’s vice president of content marketing, and is the author of  the recently-published ebook Driving Content DiscoveryFollow her on Twitter at @sarahskerik.

6 Keys to Using the New Twitter Design for PR

Actor Channing Tatum’s Twitter profile shows off the new format.

Twitter’s new design – mirroring Facebook’s layout and emphasizing visuals – reinforces the importance of using multimedia elements in communications. However, the new layout offers more opportunity for brands than initially meets the eye.  (See related: Coming soon from Twitter)

Surfacing granular content (& winning attention)

The brands that do it best know that Twitter is about granular information. The short format requires brevity, and forces tweet authors to get straight to the point. Best practices for tweeting links are straightforward:

  • On Twitter, your tweet is your headline. Its role is to arrest the reader’s attention and get them to take a next step, such as clicking on the link or re-tweeting the message.  lil tweetAvoid generalizations. Instead, carefully craft your tweet to give followers insight into what the link contains (and incentive to click!)
  • Include visuals that are strongly related to and illustrative of the content you’re sharing. Pictures and videos stand out in the newsfeed and command attention, and they convey messages in their own right.
  • Use relevant hashtags. While hashtags can be used to convey side commentary or emotion, for brands, hashtags are also how content is found. Scan your own Twitter feeds for relevant hashtags, and also use the Twitter search function for research. Don’t use a hashtag without first looking at the related tweet stream. You want to make sure your messaging is in relevant and appropriate company.

Drill into the angles
You can surface (and illustrate!) a variety of themes and elements for the story you’re promoting. In most cases, the stories we create –whether in the form of a press release about a new product, a blog post about an industry trend or pitches about an important development at the companies we represent – contain multiple hooks and angles and elements. Every tweet is another opportunity to engage your audience, and sharing different story angles increases the message’s appeal.

So for PR pros whose brands have cultivated strong presences on Twitter, some new tactics are in order:

  • Don’t get in the habit of tweeting the headline and calling it a day. Instead, create a series of tweets highlighting different elements of the story.
  • Share individual visual elements. And when sharing large infographics, consider having your designer create image snippets that illustrate one key fact. A simpler image will render better in the Twitter feed.
  • Don’t be afraid of tweeting multiple messages about one piece of content. One white paper or press release could reasonably offer a host of tweeting angles – quotes from people mentioned, a host of key findings, a variety of charts and graphs. Stagger the tweets over a few days (or even longer) to maximize visibility.

One final note: as Twitter rolls out the new design, we all need to be mining our image files for visuals that will fill the new space. Larger profile pictures and a Facebook cover-style banner are key features of the new look, and offer brands the opportunity showcase their visual identities.

Learn more about using visuals in B2B campaigns by viewing the on-demand webinar: Powering B2B Content with Multimedia.

Author Sarah Skerik is PR Newswire’s vice president of content marketing, and is the author of  the ebook  New School Press Release TacticsFollow her on Twitter at @sarahskerik.

 

 

MEDIA News: Media Moves at Good Morning America, AP, Roll Call and More…

http://prnbloggers.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/agility-logo.png?w=127&h=125&h=125PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department makes thousands of updates to the  database of journalists and bloggers that underpins our Agility media targeting and distribution platform.  Below is a sampling of recent media moves and news from the research team.  Learn more about Agility media targeting here.

Good Morning America Good Morning America (New York, NY): Amy Robach (@arobach) will replace News Anchor Josh Elliot at “Good Morning America” (@GMA). In addition, former New York Giant Michael Strahan (@michaelstrahan) is set to become the newest member of @GMA. He will continue to Co-Host Live! With Kelly and Michael.

The Associated Press Associated Press – Washington Bureau (Washington, DC): Assistant Business Editor Brad Foss (@bradfoss_) has been promoted to Deputy Business Editor. And Times Picayune Reporter Juliet Linderman (@JulietLinderman) has joined the Baltimore Bureau @AP to cover urban issues and education.

Roll Call Roll Call (Washington, DC): Former Washington Times (@WashTimes) Assistant Political Editor David Eldridge joins the staff @rollcall as the House Editor. And Daily Caller Reporter Alexis Levinson (@alexis_levinson) is now the Senate Elections Reporter.

NYT Business Business Day- The New York Times (New York, NY): Dionne Searcey (@dionnesearcey) joins @nytimesbusiness as an Economics Reporter.

NYT Magazine The New York Times Magazine (New York, NY): Jake Silverstein (@jakesilverstein) of @TexasMonthly has been appointed Editor. He will join the magazine in late Spring.

Chicago Sun-Times Chicago Sun-Times.com (Chicago, IL): Madeleine Doubek (@MDoubekRebootIL) (info@rebootillinois.com) joins as a Columnist for the daily’s (@Suntimes) editorial page and “Early & Often” (@CSTearlyoften), a digital platform for government and politics. Doubek previously served at the Daily Herald.

The New York Times The New York Times (New York, NY): Jonathan Mahler (@jonathanmahler) joins @nytimes as a Corporate Media Reporter. He will begin on 4/23/2014.

Thomson Reuters Thomson Reuters (New York, NY): Mike Stone (@MichaelStone) former Senior Reporter for dealReporter, has been named Mergers & Acquisitions Reporter @thomsonreuters.

Psychology Today Psychology Today (New York, NY): Jennifer Bleyer (@jennypencil) joins Psychology Today (@psychtoday) as a Staff Editor.

TIME.com Time Magazine (New York, NY): Tom Weber (@tweber) has been promoted to Executive Editor. He joined the magazine 2 years ago as Assistant Managing Editor.

CNBC CNBC (New York, NY): Former Bloomberg News Reporter Meg Tirrell (@megtirrell) has been added to cover Biotechnology and Pharmaceuticals.

Wall Street Journal The Wall Street Journal (New York, NY): Jo Craven McGinty (@mcjomcg) climbs aboard @WSJ as a Numbers Columnist. She will cover data and statistical analysis. James Graff (@lathram) is also joining as a World Coverage Editor.

GuardianUS Guardian America – New York Bureau (New York, NY): Megan Carpentier (@megancarpentier) joins @GuardianUS as Deputy Opinion Editor.

The Globe and Mail Globe & Mail (Toronto, ON): David Walmsley is the new Editor-in-Chief @globeandmail.

CNN International CNN International (Atlanta, GA): Amara Walker has joined @cnni as Anchor from WFLD-TV in Chicago.

The Atlantic The Atlantic (Washington, DC): Executive Editor J.J. Gould (@jjgould) was promoted to Digital Editor @TheAtlantic.

Scientific American Scientific American (New York, NY): Former Chemical & Engineering News (@cenmag) Deputy Editor Josh Fischman (@jfischman) has signed on as a Senior Editor @sciam.

The Star-Ledger The Star-Ledger (Newark, NJ): After 35 years as a Sports Writer @starledger, Tom Luicci (‏@TomLuicci) decides “it’s time to move on.” Luicci leaves the Star-Ledger having most recently covered Rutgers University Athletics.

New Haven Register New Haven Register (New Haven, CT): Keldy Ortiz (@keldyOrtiz) has joined @nhregister as a Breaking News Reporter. Previously he was a Sports Reporter in Texas.

The State Newspaper The State (Columbia, SC): Kristy Rupon (@krupon) has been named Business Editor @thestate. She had been Acting Business Editor.

Indianapolis Star The Indianapolis Star (Indianapolis, IN): Managing Editor Ronnie Ramos (@RonnieRamos) was promoted to Managing Director/Digital & Sports @indystar.

The Tennessean The Tennessean (Nashville, TN): We are sorry to report the passing of long-time Columnist Gail Kerr @tennessean.

MBJ Memphis Business Journal (Memphis, TN): Joanna Crangle is the new Publisher of the Journal (@MBJMemphis). She has been with the Journal since 2008.

Star Tribune Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN): Allison Sherry (@allisonsherry) has joined the paper (@StarTribune) as the Washington D.C. Bureau Chief and Reporter. She comes to the paper from The Denver Post.

SPIN Spin Magazine (New York, NY): Editor-in-Chief Jem Aswad (@jemaswad) is moving on from @SPINmagazine.

Eater National Eater (@Eater) (tips@eater.com): Ryan Sutton (@QualityRye) is the new Head Critic for Eater New York (@EaterNY) and Robert Sietsema (@RobertSietsema) is the new Restaurant Critic.

epicurious Epicurious.com (@Epicurious) (feedback@epicurious.com): Gabriella Vigoreaux is the new Editorial Assistant at Epicurious. Matt Duckor (@MattDuckor) is the new Restaurant Editor at the outlet.

Yahoo Yahoo! (@Yahoo) (media@yahoo-inc.com): Josh Wolk (@JoshSWolk) is the new Executive Entertainment Editor at Yahoo!.

Newsday (Melville, NY): Sports Journalist Marcus Henry (@marchenrysports) passed away at the age of 41.

Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, CA): Former Times Sports Reporter and ex-USC football star Lonnie White has passed away at the age of 49. And Megan Garvey (@garveylatimes) has been promoted to Deputy Managing Editor, Digital @LATimes.

FOX 11 Los Angeles KTTV-TV (Los Angeles, CA): FOX 11 Los Angeles (@myfoxla) welcomes Bill Mondora as Vice President and News Director.

KPIX 5 KPIX-TV (San Francisco, CA): KPIX-TV (@CBSSF) welcomes Veronica De La Cruz (@VeronicaDLCruz) as Evening Co-Anchor.

Jaime Zea Univision – WUVC-TV (Fayetteville, NC): Jaime Zea (@jaimezea) has been named News Director @WUVCUnivision40.

MEDIAware’s full weekly version can be found at:www.prnewswire.com/knowledge-center/medi…

PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department provides daily updates on Twitter (twitter.com/PRNmedia).

Detailed outlet and contact information is available at agility.prnewswire.com.

Satellite Media Tours: Moving Beyond the TV

A sure-fire way to gain TV exposure for your organization’s story is with a satellite media tour (“SMT.”)  SMTs enable your spokesperson or expert to virtually visit a variety of television markets in rapid succession via a series of interviews that are pre-booked with participating  stations.

In reality, though, SMTs deliver more than TV exposure.  Most stations have robust web presences, enabling online audiences to see segments even if they missed the newscast on which a piece originally aired. Additionally, by incorporating audio and online interviews,  the SMT can rapidly morph from a television-only campaign into one that encompasses radio and online audiences, as well.   We’re even doing Blogger Media Tours, focusing on delivering interviews directly to targeted bloggers.

 SMT options:  solo or co-op

Most organizations work with a vendor (such as PR Newswire’ s MultiVu™ division) that coordinates pitching the story to TV stations and other outlets, coordinating  media bookings and managing all of the logistics, including the recording location (whether in a studio or elsewhere) and the communications with the media outlets and bloggers.

 

There are two different approaches to satellite media tours:  your brand can either go it alone, or you can join a couple other brands telling related stories on a cooperative effort, something we call a “co-op SMT.”    The magnitude of your organization’s story as well as your budget are two of the key factors in determining which approach to take for your story.

A co-op tour is a satellite media tour featuring two to four participants focusing on a particular topic or event, such as fitness, beauty, personal finance or sports. Each participant is given 20 seconds to convey their message.  Because resources are pooled the participants, co-ops provide a cost-effective option for reaching consumer audiences.

 What to expect:

Once you have decided to go ahead with your SMT, your MultiVu representative will work with you to coordinate all aspects of your media tour and will ensure that your SMT achieves optimum results. MultiVu will advise on tour date as well as coordinate all onsite logistics, whether at a studio or at a remote location.  We will also discuss key messages, create a one page media alert for use in pitching and determine the most effective overall strategy.   Pitching ideally gets underway a minimum of four weeks prior to tour date.  Strong, up-to-date media contacts mean everything when it comes to booking a media tour.  MultiVu maintains excellent relationships with individual producers at TV, Radio and internet shows who we know will be interested in your story.

On the day of the media tour, plan to have talent arrive approximately an hour before the first interview, this usually means around 5:00 or 5:30 AM ET.  “Business casual” attire is generally most appropriate, and  spokespeople should not wear white or heavily-patterned shirts.  Once at the studio, the spokesperson will go into makeup and your onsite SMT producer will review the morning’s activities and ensure that all technical facets of the tour are set. If possible, sit the spokesperson down for a quick dry run interview before the tour gets underway.  TV interviews will typically be between 2 and 3 minutes long, radio and web interviews will typically be longer (up to 10 minutes.)  The spokesperson will be alerted beforehand as to whether the interviews are live or taped and where the interviews are originating.

The day following the media tour, MultiVu will provide a preliminary report listing airings, audience reached and equivalent advertising values, and if available, streaming video links to the TV segments.  MultiVu will also produce a DVD copy of the entire satellite media tour for your records, which can later be used to assemble a highlights reel.

An evolving resource for media:

Media tours have evolved significantly over the last several years in step with the changing media environment.  For example, in years past, a “traditional” SMT took place between the hours of about 6:00-10:00 AM ET and included interviews solely on morning TV newscasts. Now, SMTS are often extended to 11:00 AM ET or even later to allow for increased booking opportunities, as some stations prefer to tape segments for later use.  Additionally, we’re also incorporating radio and online interviews into the tour, as these additional bookings mean significant added audience and return on your investment.

With the proper guidance, media tours can be a highly effective tool to convey your messages to the media as well as to the public at large, via both broadcast and online outlets.  If you have questions or want to learn more, contact the MultiVu team.

Learn how to empower your communications with visuals — join next week’s free webinar – details below. 

Click to register for our upcoming webinar on utilizing visuals to boost the effectiveness of B2B content.

Author Sarah Skerik is PR Newswire’s vice president of content marketing, and is the author of  the ebook  New School Press Release TacticsFollow her on Twitter at @sarahskerik.

 

Does Your Story Belong on TV? Look to Your Audience for the Answer

 

“How do I get my story on to TV?”

When we hear this question (and we hear it a lot) we know that the person asking it is really trying to meet a few different challenges. In reality, they’re asking “How do I reach a broad audience?” “How do I generate a high-impact message?” and “How do I tell my story visually?”

As you might guess, these few questions have a lot of answers. We’re going to tackle them over the next few days in a series of blog posts about using visual content to reach core groups.

multimedia comms webinar

Learn more about incorporating visuals into your B2B mix – click to register for our free webinar!

The best way to begin building a visual strategy is to start with your audience.

First, ask yourself who the brand really needs to reach with the message. That’s the key question you need to ask when setting the course for your visual story, and determining whether or not TV really is the best channel for your message. Morning talk and network news shows do reach a broad swath of consumers. If your story truly has broad public appeal, pursuing television coverage may in fact make a lot of sense.

It’s worth spending a few minutes thinking specifically about your story in the context of the audience, too. TV and radio producers are looking for “news you can use” content with easy-to-understand consumer messages. Stories need to be useful, interesting and relevant to the media outlet’s audiences if they’re to win consideration by the production staff.

Pro tip: Frame your story in the context of what the potential audience will find most relevant. That will give you the best shot at creating messages that will win media attention and resonate with target audiences.

However, if an honest assessment of your audience reveals that it’s more niche than national, TV probably isn’t the best route to take – but that doesn’t mean leaving video by the wayside. An array of online videos – including expert commentary, a real-life demo, and customer stories – can draw audience and be re-purposed for use in email campaigns, on social networks, in newsletters and on blog posts (to name just a few.)

Coming tomorrow: Getting your story onto TV (and other channels) with a satellite media tour.

Author Sarah Skerik is PR Newswire’s vice president of content marketing, and is the author of  the ebook  New School Press Release TacticsFollow her on Twitter at @sarahskerik.

MEDIA News: Media Moves at Newsday, Business Insider, Defense One and More…

http://prnbloggers.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/agility-logo.png?w=127&h=125&h=125PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department makes thousands of updates to the  database of journalists and bloggers that underpins our Agility media targeting and distribution platform.  Below is a sampling of recent media moves and news from the research team.  Learn more about Agility media targeting here.

Newsday Newsday (New York, NY): Former @WSJ President Gordon McLeod has been named Publisher @Newsday.

SI KIDS Sports Illustrated for Kids (New York, NY): Mark Bechtel (@SI_MarkBechtel) is the new Managing Editor of @SIKids. He most recently served as a Senior Editor at Sports Illustrated (@SInow).

Business Insider Business Insider (New York, NY): Anthony Weiner (@anthonyweiner) joins @businessinsider as a Political Columnist. His column titled “Weiner!” will appear the last Friday of every month.

Defense One Defense One (Washington, DC): Ben Watson (@iBenwatson) takes the reins as News Editor @DefenseOne.

BuzzFeed BuzzFeed (New York, NY): Former Breaking News Reporter Adrian Carrasquillo (@RealAdrianC) has been promoted to Editor of Latino Coverage @buzzfeed. And Alison Willmore (@AlisonWillmore) will be Buzzfeed’s first Film Critic.

Gawker Gawker (@Gawker) (tips@gawker.com): The new Editor-in-Chief at Gawker is Max Read (@Max_Read).

Los Angeles Times Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, CA): The Times (@LATimes) names Kimi Yoshino (kimi.yoshino@latimes.com) (@kyoshino) Business Editor.

Degen Pener The Hollywood Reporter (Los Angeles, CA): Culture Editor Degen Pener  (@DegenPener) will serve in the same position with Billboard (@billboard) also.

Mashable Mashable (@Mashable) (news@mashable.com): Ashley Codianni (@AshleyCodianni) will soon be the Director of News Videos at Mashable.

Salon.com Salon.com (@Salon): Laura Bennett (@LBennett) will soon be the new Culture Editor at Salon.

The Verge The Verge (@Verge): Matthew Schnipper (@MattSchnipper) will be the new Managing Editor.

The Daily Beast The Daily Beast (@TheDailyBeast): Malcolm Jones has been promoted to Book Editor at The Daily Beast.

Slate Slate.com (@Slate): The newest contributor for Slate.com is Jamelle Bouie (@JBouie). His focus will be on politics and race.

epicurious Epicurious.com (@Epicurious): Danica Lo (@DanicaLo) is the new Executive Editor at Epicurious.

Chicago Sun-Times Chicago Sun-Times.com (Chicago, IL): Deputy Features Editor Sue Ontiveros (@SueOntiveros) is resigning from the daily (@Suntimes) after 30 years of service. She will continue to serve at the paper by posting a weekly editorial page column about social issues and blogging about nutrition, fitness, wellness and food online on a freelance basis.

Capitol File Mag Capitol File (Washington, DC): Amy Moeller (@amyemoeller) has been hired as an Associate Editor @capitolfilemag.

Billboard Billboard (New York, NY): Frank DiGiacomo (@frankdigiacomo) joins @billboard as a Contributing Editor and Carson Griffith (@CarsonGriffith) joins as a Contributor.

PIX11 WPIX-TV (New York, NY): WPIX-TV (@wpix) launches “PIX11 Investigates”, an investigative news program, featuring Arnold Diaz, Mary Murphy (@MurphyPIX), and Howard Thompson (@PIXHelpMeHoward) as hosts.

Essence Magazine Essence Magazine (New York, NY): Deena Campbell (@DeenaCampbell) is the new Hair and Beauty Editor @essencemag.

domino Domino Magazine (New York, NY): Krissy Tiglias (@krissytiglias) is the new Digital Director @dominomag.

Star Tribune The Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN): Matt Vensel @mattvensel) is joining the paper (@StarTribune) as a Sports Reporter covering the Minnesota Vikings football team. He was most recently with The Baltimore Sun.

Duluth~Superior Mag Duluth-Superior Magazine (Duluth, MN): The monthly lifestyle periodical (@DSMagazine) focused on the Duluth region, has closed down. The magazine had been in print since 2008.

Washington Post The Washington Post (Washington, DC): Scott Allen (@ScottSAllen) joins the Sports Staff as a Reporter/Blogger.

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL): Chicago Blackhawks beat writer Tim Sassone (@TimSassone) recently passed away. Tim covered the Blackhawks and hockey for the last 26 years.

SCVSignal The Signal (Santa Clarita, CA): The Signal (@SCVSignal) promotes Russ Briley to Publisher.

Simi Valley Acorn Simi Valley Acorn (Agoura Hills, CA): The Acorn (@SVAcorn) welcomes Darleen Principe as Editor.

Petoskey News-Review The Petoskey News-Review (Petoskey, MI): Rachel Brougham is the new Assistant Editor @PetoskeyNews.

MEDIAware’s full weekly version can be found at:www.prnewswire.com/knowledge-center/medi…

PR Newswire’s Audience Research Department provides daily updates on Twitter (twitter.com/PRNmedia).

Detailed outlet and contact information is available at agility.prnewswire.com.

5 PR Tactics for Internal Communications

Internal Collaboration
With the proliferation of social media channels, employees have become 24/7 brand ambassadors for their companies and the lines between internal and external communications are continuously blurring. Therefore, employers have as much of a responsibility to engage and inspire their internal staff as they do with external audiences.

The tactics discussed at Business Development Institute’s Internal Communications and Collaboration Leadership Forum closely mirrored the new school PR and marketing tactics that organizations are employing to drive action from their consumers. After all, employees are simultaneously consuming the information they produce and should therefore believe in the same brand promises they make to the public. The following tactics illustrate how you can improve your employee experience using similar tactics used to engage external audiences

Create useful content

Treat the initiatives happening around your company as important breaking news. Editorial content such as blog posts and articles help amplify positive growth around the company and keep teams across the organization informed about the overall mission and business strategy.

Senior leaders as chief communicators

According to a survey conducted by Brilliant Ink, 80% of employees feel more engaged when they receive inspiring communications from senior leaders. Quotes from executive leadership establish trust and humanizes the brand from both an employee and consumer standpoint.

Utilize multimedia 

Video messages and teleconferencing are other ways to humanize the organization by bringing communications to a personal level and are far more engaging than a text only email. Below is a video used by AIG that motivated their employees to “bring on tomorrow.”

Use internal social media with purpose

The social channels used by consumers such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn meet different needs of their audiences, and enterprise social channels are no different. Your internal communication channels need a thoughtful strategy behind them to keep people engaged and understand the value of communicating on that space. Ultimately it is best to minimize the number of places that people have to go for communications.

Communicate the value or benefit of an employee’s labor

PR and marketing professionals are ultimately trying to communicate why their product or service is important to consumers. Employees need to feel the same sense of importance when it comes to their work. Research by AIG reports that 70% or more of strategic and change programs fail without effective manager communications. Connecting the dots between daily work and the overall company strategy is vital to maintaining productivity and helping an employee understand where they fit in.

It is widely understood that there is a direct and positive relationship between employee engagement and overall company growth; organizations that invest in creating a more unified work environment experience more productivity and financial growth than those that do not. Plan your internal communications strategies with the same attention and care as you do externally in order to drive inspiration and action from employees.

ShannonShannon Ramlochan is the Content Marketing Coordinator at PR Newswire. Follow her on Twitter @sramloch.