A Guide to Owning Your Career

26 07 2013

Do you “own” your career? Do you have a plan or are you taking it as it comes?

Whether you’re just about to start your career, trying to build your career, help someone grow their business or launch your own business, retired PR entrepreneur John J. Bailey has some great advice for you in his book, “The Power of Ownership: How to Build a Career and a Business.” (http://thepowerofownership.com/)  Ownership - Bailey

I have known and admired John Bailey, often referred to as “Mr. Ethics” in Detroit, for 20 years. He has been a competitor, a friend, and perhaps unknown to him, a role model.

Yet, even as someone who has practiced PR in Detroit for some 30 years and had some terrific mentors and clients, I found John’s book highly instructive as well as entertaining.

Finishing this book left me wishing two things:

1) That I would have had the opportunity to work directly with John sometime in my career; and

2) That I would have had access to this book 21 years ago when I first founded my own firm.

You can read the book in a couple of evenings … but you will want to keep it handy for regular reference. It provides valuable perspective and insight from a Midwest PR legend, a PRSA Hall of Famer and one of the most respected and successful business professionals in the Detroit community over the past 20 years.

Part Detroit PR history, part biography of one of Detroit’s business heroes, and part business success primer, John’s book chronicles the trials and successes in his career … and shows how his firm grew into one of the most respected PR firms in the country.

More importantly, it offers some simple, but profound, advice for anyone to looking to succeed in business … as John did it: with honor, honesty and integrity.

Do yourself and your career a favor: check this book out. 

Pay-Per-Hit PR vs. Retainer PR: The Winner Is …

24 07 2013

Originally posted on Bianchi Biz Blog:

Clients everywhere have heard the pitches … “Don’t get trapped into large PR retainers. Pay only for the media coverage you get with our pay-for-performance model”… or conversely, “PR success isn’t measured in individual hits. If you want to succeed long term, you need to retain a strategic PR partner.”

Which approach wins? It depends on your company’s situation.

When it comes to selecting a PR firm, one approach does not fit all. (Disclosure: Our PR firm operates as a long-term partner to our clients on either a retainer or a service fee basis. This approach has worked for us and, more importantly, as a number of our client relationships have lasted 12 years or more, it is working well for our cost-conscious clients.)

Different companies, different situations require different approaches.

A pay-per-placement (PPP) PR approach may be right for you if:

  • Your company is…

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Are You a Thought Leader?

22 07 2013

Originally posted on Bianchi Biz Blog:

Since the term “thought leader” was coined in business circles some 20 years ago, many business-to-business companies and executives have yearned to be thought leaders in their industries.

By definition, a thought leader is a person (or entity) who is recognized by peers for having progressive and innovative ideas, and who shares these ideas and helps to effect change with those ideas.

Note the key words “recognized” and “share.” scarecrow-wizard-of-oz

It’s not enough to develop great ideas. To be a thought leader, you need to be recognized for having great ideas, and you need to share and champion these ideas through effective communication.

Of course, in today’s world, this communication includes a full range of earned and owned media activities – PR approaches such as publicity, social media, speaking and blogging, to name just a few. And ultimately, recognition of a thought leader builds and gains momentum…

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Advice for the PR Student

17 07 2013

Originally posted on Bianchi Biz Blog:

(Post by Jaclyn Reardon, Assistant Account Executive)

As a recent grad with one year on the job, I’ve found that there’s a lot more you should know about the practice of PR than you learn in college. 

While college PR courses are an excellent source for the basics of things such as writing, programming and communication theory, there are many aspects to the industry that aren’t covered in your typical coursework.

So it helps if you give yourself a head start by building your knowledge base through internships and by attending workshops and meetings put on by your neighborhood PRSA or PRSSA chapter.

Beyond that, here are a few other things to keep in mind as you make your way to the PR profession:

Computer skills

In school, we all use computers to complete assignments. But do you really know how to use the programs you may need on the job?  Enhancing your computer skills by taking courses…

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9 Ways to Build a Winning Partnership with Your PR Firm

16 07 2013

Originally posted on Bianchi Biz Blog:

(Post by Leslie Dagg, Account Supervisor)

In a time where the average client-PR agency relationship lasts only a couple of years, we’re often asked how we’ve maintained client relationships that have lasted more than a decade.

In two words, the answer would be: true partnership. While most PR firms have solid processes and competent peopleLD FB who want to deliver for the client, and most clients want their PR team to succeed on their behalf, it takes more than that to create a truly winning partnership.

Drawing from our own, as well as our clients’, experiences, here are nine key success factors:

  1. The early bird gets it – The earlier you bring your PR partners into the process, the more value they can add and the more they’ll feel ownership in your program. If you treat them like strategic partners and involve them in strategy development, they’ll be

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Roll with the Changes: The New B2B PR Landscape

3 07 2013

(By Jaclyn Reardon, Assistant Account Executive)

The past recession and the digital revolution have turned the world of journalism upside down. Not just for general consumer media, but also for trade media, which serve as the arbiters of credibility within an industry segment … and that traditionally could make or break a B2B company’s PR efforts.Landscape

When the media landscape changes, PR has to adapt, or else we’ll be left behind. Here are just six of the changes B2B PR is faced with and how they can impact tactics and results:

We Must Do More with Less – Many companies and clients have not regained their full budgets from pre-recession levels, but are expected to spread their smaller budgets out over more options. Choosing where you focus your energy is imperative.

Media Relationships: Never More Important – Smaller newsroom staffs mean fewer experienced journalists onboard, and those that remain have less time. This means B2B PR staffs must build solid equity with key journalists in order to keep dialogue going.

Deliver the Goods, Fast – Many media outlets have replaced staff reporters with freelancers, who often focus on generating stories fast and don’t have the same kind of in-depth expertise as beat reporters do. This means we need to be able to package and convey our news for a story quickly.

In the Event of an Event – There appears to be more industry events, at least in the automotive industry, but fewer reporters have time to be onsite covering them. This means we have to make the most of it when reporters do attend and provide those offsite with materials they need to cover the news.

Platform Proliferation – The increased number of social media platforms, which can spread news globally and instantaneously, means it’s more difficult to control our messages. Preparation here is key, in the form of social media policies, key message development and crisis communication planning.

Bonus: We Get More Mileage – An upside to the multiple forms of media channels is that news content is more often repurposed across formats, such as print, digital, online, blog, etc.

How have you been affected by the changes in the media and PR world?


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