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Archives: April 2008

Chris Brogan on PR: “It’s about getting to know me before you fart in my face”

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We don’t know social media strategist and Podcamp founder Chris Brogan, per se, but we do follow his blog from time to time.

And today, we came across a particularly interesting (and funny) post (thanks Brian Solis!)about a PR pitch he received. The pitch came from CellSpin, asking Chris to embargo news until 9AM ET tomorrow.

Well it certainly rubbed him the wrong way, and he included in his response one of the best one liners we’ve seen recently: “It’s about getting to know me before you fart in my face.”

To be sure, we here at PRNewser won’t claim innocence from never having farted in one’s face, however do try and avoid it at all costs.

Truth is, it’s impossible to get to know every reporter, but that is not the only point. As Chris states, “Please at least PRETEND you know me, give a rat’s ass about me, read my stupid little blog. Don’t just lob something over the wall at me. Because hey, I’m doing something over here, and I’m actually reaching out to potential people in your space…”

Now we’re not advocating being fake to people, but someting simple like, “Hey, I saw your post on this, and I thought you’d be interested in my client, who does this,” will go a long way into making your pitch stand out.

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Spin the Agencies of Record

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(High Falls Brewery’s Genesee Cream Ale–revived by PR?)

This edition of Spin the Agencies of Record includes account wins in mobile tech, home care for seniors, and BEER:

Home care provider Senior Helpers chooses Research Triangle area agency 919 Marketing as agency of record

The Rogers Group lands Mobility Electronics Inc. (NASDAQ: MOBE)

Bite Communications wins Sybase, creates the cutely-named Incisor division to handle the work

Martino Flynn to pump the PR tap for High Falls Brewing

Hancock: Super Hero Damage Control

More extensive footage of the new Will Smith comedy have been hitting YouTube as of late.

More importantly than Smith IMHO, the film reunites Jason Bateman and Charlize Theron from the indominatable Arrested Development TV show. Bateman–also enjoying an NPH-style career revival through self-parody–plays a PR executive who feels indebted enough to the drunken Hancock to take on the rehabilitation of his career and image as a Superhero.

The amplified bad behavior and resulting turnaround can be seen every day in the pages of Us Weekly. It looks like his PR council advises things like being nice to children, not killing whales, not destroying public property, regular grooming, and wearing a decent suit. Sage advice.

Hancock hits theaters on July 2nd.

Video of Keith Olbermann’s passionate plea for an Arrested Development movie can be found here. Episodes of Arrested Development are available for free here.

F + LDS = Bad News for Salt Lake City

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(AP via CNN.com)

When I wrote my original post, a case study of sorts, “Mitt Romney, De-facto Spokesman for Mormonism; Or, How the LDS Manages PR Like a Corporation,” I listed the positives elements of how the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) communicates, as well as the things that threaten its perception from outsiders.

South Park and Big Love episodes are gnats compared to the ongoing polygamy scandal in Texas.

To their chagrin, the polygamous sect calls itself “FLDS,” (fundamentalist) merely one letter away from the LDS. While the FLDS is spinning like mad to refute the findings (teen pregnancy, evidence of broken bones in the children), it appears the LDS has mostly steered clear of the news cycle.

However, the LDS church did issue a list of inaccuracies in some of the news reports connecting it with the FLDS

Polygamy was suspended and disavowed by the Church in the 1890s, essentially in exchange for statehood.

Expect the LDS, like the Vatican to look at their damage control problem in a much longer time frame than most corporations.

In the meantime, an informal analysis of the news cycle looks pretty bad: 12,300 articles on Google News with the word “FLDS” and almost 30,000 blog posts.

Chrysler Churns Through Second Top Spokesman This Year

Chrysler’s top PR executive is about to leave the company, sources tell the Wall Street Journal. David Barnas, will “join a new steering supplier being formed by Los Angeles-based Platinum Equity.”

Since CEO Bob Nardelli came over from Home Depot last summer and cut communications staff, a number of others have left.

As we noted at the time, Jason Vines, the previous head of PR didn’t last long, leaving this past December, followed closely by senior staffer Michael Aberlich.

Clean Up That Resume

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iCrossing is looking for an Associate Media Manager

Business.com is looking for a Marketing Manager

Columbia Business School is looking for a Communications Officer

Susan Magrino Agency is looking for a Media Relations Specialist

NYC Department of Small Business Services is looking for a Communications & Marketing Intern

In Which We Receive Generic Quote from Miley Cyrus’ Publicist

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With all the uproar over the Miley Cyrus Vanity Fair photos, we figured we should do some digging.

So we contacted her publicist at PMK/HBH, another one of the “you know they’re big time” agencies, because they have a website consisting only of telephone, fax, and office addresses.

What we received was the statement from Miley that has appeared in media around the world: “I took part in a photo shoot that was supposed to be ‘artistic’ and now, seeing the photographs and reading the story, I feel so embarrassed. I never intended for any of this to happen and I apologize to my fans who I care so deeply about.”

Not that we were surprised to receive the standard statement, nor can we blame the publicist for doing her job. We could have called the agency direct, but that would have been unlikely to change the outcome.

Meanwhile, MTV.com has commentary from the people who really matter: Heidi Montag, Lauren Conrad, and Hilary Duff.

Hollywood Publicist: I Have Learned to Only Take on Movies That I Love

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Publicist Jeremy Walker contemplates retirement and then dishes his perspective on the business of film PR, in a column on indieWIRE.

A key take away – and something many of us aren’t in the position to say: don’t fake it. Says Walker:

It makes sense that a person who promotes movies will probably also be a person who loves movies, but what journalist should trust a publicist who loves every movie? I’ve found over the years that to love a movie is not enough reason to take it on; instead I have learned to only take on movies that I love and that I can actually do something with.

We couldn’t agree more, but unfortunately the choice is not always that simple.

[Hat tip: Defamer]

The Ticker: Weezer, Newsday, Business Blogging

Grads: Expect $30-35k for PR, Comm. Jobs

It’s almost May, and that means a fresh crop of college grads are hitting the job market. According to a recent National Association of Colleges and Employers study, “The average starting salary offer is 4 percent higher for 2008 graduates than last year’s alumni.”

What about PR? The study listed “communications” jobs with an average starting salary of $35,196. Jobs in this field are described as, “much of the same focus as public relations, advertising, journalism, marketing and business management. The skills you learn in this major are transferable to many areas.”

PR and “organizational communications” came in a bit lower at $30,667, and were described as varying “from orchestrating the PR for large, small or non-profit organizations; writing the communications for companies or even working in advertising.”

Broad definitions to be sure, but these salaries seem to be on par with what we’re hearing. Do you agree?

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