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Press Kit Perks

TURNing Tricks for Press

If you’re like FBDC, you may have received this tricked out press kit from AMC recently. The network is pimping out their new TV show TURN, about America’s first spy ring. Considering this is essentially a glorified DVD case, it’s been dressed up fancier than one of Eliot Spitzer’s “escorts.”

Disguised as a massive, leather-bound novel, this press kit contains: a DVD screener of the pilot episode, a pretty picture book of cast bios, a helpful info sheet on Revolutionary War-era spy tools, and a letter from Alexander Rose, author of Washington Spies -the book upon which the show is based.

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Journo Perks: 24 Miniature Yahoo! Cupcakes

Just moments ago, we heard a loud knocking a the door. Sh-t! What did we do? Lo and behold it was a large bag of Georgetown cupcakes. They were from Yahoo! to give us a “little taste of Yahoo! on the road.” Delivered by a neighbor, we weren’t sure he was actually going to hand them over.

Just as the ad campaign states, Yahoo! on the Road is an attempt to make “every day less everyday.” From New York and San Francisco to Berlin and London, Yahoo! On the Road is a mobile and innovation entertainment festival, featuring bands, comedians, technology and surprises they’re not revealing to us just yet.

Read more about it here.

See the cupcakes…a little mashed up in the journey, but still delicious and better than Washington Examiner Paul Bedard‘s Dunkin Donuts. Read more

5 Best/5 Weirdest/5 Most Useful Things in TIME-People Party Gift Bag

We know they say not to look a gift horse in the mouth. But we’re going to today as we sift through the heaviest TIME-People gift bag to date. And actually, we’re going to also highly praise the picking powers that be as we name the 5 best, 5 weirdest and 5 most useful items in the bag. Let’s get the weirdest over with shall we?


1. Heavy-ass granola. Seriously, this is what’s weighing down the bag and is going to slip the disc in my back? This stuff is called “Purely Elizabeth” and it’s made with organic quinoa, amaranth + chia (yum). It’s gluten-free, vegan and free of refined sugar. We can hardly wait.

2. GoGo Sequeez apple-grape applesauce on the go. It looks like two very strange, wide, tubes of toothpaste in a burlap bag, only it’s applesauce. Why do I want applesauce on the go? Or the go-go, I should say. Of course it’s gluten, nut and dairy free.

3. NeuroBLISS lightly carbonated drink, astonishingly heavier than the granola. It’s meant to de-stress. They write, “Deadlines have you stressed? On the campaign trail. Covering the economic crisis. It’s not always easy to follow your bliss. But with NeuroBLISS, it’s as simple as taking a sip.” Ingredients: L-theanine, chamomile. They say it “enhances mood and promotes a positive outlook — no matter what’s happening on the Hill.”

4. Happy Socks — maybe some of the ugliest socks you’ve ever seen that you should only wear in the confines of your home. Made in Sweden, they’re apparently popular and sold in “close to 50 countries.” Above all, they’re meant to spread happiness.

5. Jelly Mousse, a natural hair gel that’s supposed to help the “overtired and cranky.” Hey, we’re noticing a theme here. (Says, “takes you from cranky to sweet.”) Ingredients: Alcohol free, Roman Chamomile (I’d try this for this ingredient alone.) In a weird twist, they add a “mommy-tip” which is that this goop can also be used to add volume. Just add a dollop and blow dry.


1. Schick Hydro 5 disposable razors. They look like they’re for men, but a woman could probable get away with using them. We’ll assume the Edge gel shaving cream is a companion item.

2. It’s a tie. USB to mini USB cable and Supersmile whitening toothpaste. We really couldn’t pick on this one, but if there was a gun to my head I’d take the whitening toothpaste.

3. Jason Vitamin E moisturizing cream. The smell is thankfully neutral; the texture, rich and substantial.

4. Sleek, simple metallic slider case for the iPhone5. Durable hardshell construction, complete edge and corner protection. What’s not to like?

5. Hawaiian sunscreen spf 45 by Alba. Smells beachy and wonderful.

And now, the best… Read more

Journo Perks: Miniature Whiskey Bottle

BrandLinkDC is at it again — this time, luring in journalists with liquor on behalf of their client, P.J. Clarke’s, for St. Patty’s Day. There will be Irish Pipe and Drum Band performances, food and drink specials, Washington Redskin cheerleaders and more.

We do hope BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton also received this miniature bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey with the accompanying shot glass.

If he didn’t, we may be willing to part with ours. We hear he has a special fondness for it. He’ll enjoy it more.

Journos Pimp for Posies

Have you noticed a recent surge of flora in your newsroom?  Are your fellow reporters collecting bouquets like business cards?  If so, there’s good reason.  But it’s not a slew of secret admirers like your floral-fied friends may want you to believe.

The real powers behind all the flowers are posh promoters Jayne Sandman and Barbara Martin of BrandLinkDC.  The dynamic duo has been wooing the Washington press corps with pockets full of posies to celebrate the District launch of their client, H. Bloom flower service.  Over the last few weeks more than 100 local VIPs and 50 reporters received arrangements like the one shown at left.  In return, recipients were asked to post photos of their flora on Facebook and were then gifted a second H. Bloom delivery.

To see which journos pimped out their pansies on Facebook, visit H. Bloom’s album here.

A Taste of the South

Taste of the South celebrated its 29th year at DAR Constitution Hall Saturday with barbecue, music, and an open bar. Proceeds from the event went to the Children’s Safety Center in Arkansas and the Capital Area REACH Program in the D.C. A real added bonus: Lots of free stuff. 

Most guests arrived at 8 p.m. and entered the main room, where each sponsor had a booth featuring their state’s food and freebies. Each had an unofficial slogan hung high above. Guests were invited to “tee off” in South Carolina, spend “a night at the Opry” in Tennessee, and Missippipi invoked the Doobie Brothers’ song “Black Water”: “Mississippi moon won’t you keep on shinin’.” The music was great,  but not without perplexing moments. When you think “southern,” Hall & Oates, Frank Sinatra, and Billy Joel don’t come to mind.

Some states fared better than others. The South is apparently big on pulled pork. Nearly every state served guests pulled pork, albeit with different rolls and sauces. There were, however, exceptions. Missouri served a delicious seafood gumbo and Florida offered an amazing grits dish and classic key lime pie. But it was Virginia that won the Fishbowl Food Prize with a warm artichoke and crab dip, turkey meatballs, potato salad, and cupcakes from D.C.’s own Georgetown Cupcake.

Giveaways ranged from lame to awesome. Most states gave away pens, buttons, and bumper stickers, including one from Florida that read: “I <3 Publix,” a southern grocery store chain. Florida also gave away salt water taffy. The Fishbowl Giveaway Prize, however, goes to Mississippi. The state offered hats, T-shirts, and polos with the Mississippi State emblem, as well as Elvis memorabilia. The famous rock star was born in Tupelo, Miss. Honorable mention goes to Aflac, a sponsor of the event, which gave away talking stuffed ducks.

The crowd was young, and there were countless bow-ties and southern belles. Guests in the VIP room were a bit older. We didn’t spot any congressmen, though there were dozens listed as hosts. We spotted Ben Stein though, who showed up later in the night and munched on a Georgetown Cupcake as he flirted and posed for pictures.

Among the Sponsors: CQ Roll Call, Politico, The Hill, Air Canada, Coca-Cola, Aflac, Reynolds American, CSX, AT&T, NAHB, Altria, Lockheed Marten, Volkswagen, Wal Mart, Edison Electric Institue, Cellular South, Air Tran, Progress Energy, Duke Energy, Southen Company, Poarch Creek Indians, and the American Natural Gas Alliance, NRECA.

Photo credit: GWU student Kelsi Browning

C-SPAN’s American History TV Diet

It’s only 11 am and I’ve already housed a bag of M&Ms and half a can of honey roasted peanuts.  Why?  Because I eat my feelings…and because C-SPAN enabled my self-destructive behavior with a care package meant to celebrate the launch of C-SPAN3′s American History TV, a  new “network within a network.”  Every weekend on C-SPAN3 and C-SPAN HD, the network will air 48 hours of people and events that help document the American story.  For more on American History TV, check out the corresponding website at

Press Kit Christmas Continues with GO SMiLE

I’m not sure how I got so lucky but damn, I love a good press kit. Last week we got hammered with the help of Jack Daniels and this week we’re bleaching the whiskey stains from our teeth with this wicked cool teeth whitening light kit from GO SMiLe. The light is new (and I can’t wait to try it) but I’ve used the company’s whitening ampoules for years and highly recommend them for everyone – especially broadcast journos.

Go Smile.jpg

Have you received an interesting or awesome press kit recently? We love hearing how companies are grabbing media attention in Washington so drop us a line – Anonymity ensured.