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Posts Tagged ‘CBS News’

Hack to Flack: A Former Journalist’s Guide to Better PR Pitches

Today we’re happy to bring you a guest post by Lindsay Goldwert, a senior program executive at a global tech PR firm. Before she leapt to the dark side, Lindsay worked at the New York Daily News, ABCNews.com, CBSNews.com, CourtTV, Glamour and Redbook. In her spare time, she writes short stories.

As a communications vet who’s worn both the “journalism” and “PR” hats, she provides us with a very unique take on the delicate dance that we call “media relations.” Enjoy!

I have a confession: until very recently I was a working journalist–and I was very cruel to PR people.

Who could blame me? Tasked with writing and producing “life & style” content for the New York Daily News’s bustling website, I could not be bothered with endless email pitches that had nothing to do with my beat. I got snippy when people called to ask me if I had received their e-mail, yet every time I cleared my inbox it managed to fill up again within the hour.

By mid-morning every day, I already had a slate of content to work on–most of it stories that bounced off the day’s news. Yet PR people still called me (always when I was on deadline) to ask whether I might have time for a desk-side client interview or a three-hour lunch event.

Didn’t they know that, as a digital reporter, I never left my desk? Soon, I didn’t just ignore emails from PR people — I deleted them en masse without reading them. Eventually, I got so frustrated with the ill-timed telephone calls that I just stopped picking up my phone altogether.

Sound familiar?

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Mediabistro Course

Storytelling for Media Professionals

Storytelling for Media ProfessionalsStarting April 22, this in-person workshop will teach you the specific ways to incorporate storytelling into your personal and professional life. Students will examine the role of storytelling in business and put their newfound skills into practice with a series of improvisation, writing, and presentation exercises designed to help them uncover personal stories. Register now! 

Daniel J. Edelman, 1920-2013: Public Relations Pioneer

Today brings sad news for the entire PR worldDaniel J. Edelman, 1920-2013: Daniel J. Edelman, industry innovator and founder of Edelman PR, died of heart failure in Chicago this morning at the age of 92.

Edelman, born in New York City on July 3, 1920, displayed an interest in journalism early in his life: He produced a community newspaper with a friend at age 11 and quickly became a sports writer/editor before earning his master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 1941.

Edelman’s introduction to public relations came during his service in the armed forces. Drafted to serve overseas in 1942, he produced a newspaper for fellow soldiers before being assigned to, in his own words, “write an analysis of German propaganda” and advise the United States military on counter-messaging efforts.

Upon his return from the service, he got a job writing for CBS News before working as a music publicist at a record label representing Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, Dizzy Gillespie and other stars of the era. According to Edelman, his real PR breakthrough came when he devised a brilliant promotional campaign for a radio show hosted by Mel Torme and sponsored by home hair care brand the Toni Company: he packaged Torme’s latest album in a cover designed to resemble a hair care kit and sent it around to local DJs to earn press attention.

The company was “so impressed” that it hired him before sending him to Chicago to work as its PR director. His first project for Toni further revealed his PR instincts: Toni’s promo campaign involved two twins, one of whom had received an expensive salon perm and one who had performed her own at-home perm with a Toni set. Edelman encouraged the company to take the “Toni twins” on tour, challenging women in the audience to guess which one had done the job herself.

Edelman held the Toni role for four years before deciding to start his own firm (and scoring his former employer as Edelman PR’s first client).

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Morgan Freeman’s Majestic Voice Supports Gay Marriage

The great Morgan Freeman, an Oscar-winning vet who’s played everyone from Nelson Mandela to The Almighty Himself (though sadly not in the same movie), has what we’d call a very recognizable voice. He’s used his soothing baritone to introduce CBS News, narrate March of the Penguins, promote the 2012 London Olympics, and even endorse political candidates like our current President.

Today, Freeman moves boldly into the social advocacy sphere, applying his signature cadence to a brief TV spot titled “Dawn of a New Day for Marriage Equality”. The purpose of the commercial, produced by the non-profit Human Rights Campaign, is to celebrate the movement’s election day victories (in which gay marriage won popular approval in three states for the first time in this country) while simultaneously preparing allies for the legal and political struggles that still lie ahead.

One could spend hours parsing the messages of this ad, and we’re sure someone will question the clear link drawn between the Civil Rights Movement and the current push for marriage equality (because someone always has to do that). Still, we find it to be a fairly compelling piece of political PR; Mr. Freeman certainly makes the HRC’s case feel more…epic than a man with less powerful vocal chords possibly could.

What do we think of this spot? What influence do Freeman’s voice and celebrity status have on the power of the underlying campaign?

Cubes: Behind-the-Scenes Tour of CBS News

Take a behind-the-scenes tour of CBS News. In this episode of mediabistroTV’s “Cubes,” Erica Hill, co-host of “CBS This Morning,” shows us around the CBS Broadcast Center.

Located on Manhattan’s west side, the building is home to the “CBS Evening News,” the iconic CBS news desk, and the brand-new studio and newsroom of “CBS This Morning.”

For more mediabistroTV videos, check out our YouTube channel, and be sure to follow us on Twitter: @mediabistroTV

Revolving Door: SJP, Anna Wintour for Obama, Margaret Brennan to CBS, Narrative.ly

Margaret Brennan, previously an anchor at Bloomberg TV, is joining CBS News as a State Department correspondent and general assignment reporter. Brennan was with Bloomberg for three years. She spoke with us for a Media Beat interview last summer, which you can check out here.

Vogue‘s Anna Wintour is pushing hard for President Obama via email. “There’s simply no excuse to let this slip,” reads the note, which The New York Observer characterizes as having “her trademark dose of mild menace.” The email is part of a campaign fundraising effort that includes a dinner with Sarah Jessica Parker. The ad for that fundraiser debuted during the MTV Movie Awards last night. Attached above. *Update 6/5: Glenn Beck rants, gets the facts wrong, mocks Wintour’s accent.

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Revolving Door: ‘CBS This Morning,’ Broadcast ratings, ‘Live With Kelly,’ and more

CBS News has named a new line up of producers and a director of production for CBS This Morning.

History Channel, BET, Telemundo, and Comedy Central were all ratings winners in 2011. [via Multichannel News]

Live With Kelly is actually doing better without Regis. It’s up 14 percent among women ages 25 to 54.

The founder of The Los Angeles Times Pressmen’s 20 Year Club Ed Padgett was fired this week for an unexplained reason.

Philadelphia Daily News sportswriter Bill Conlin resigned in anticipation of a Philadelphia Inquirer story containing allegations that Conlin molested four people when they were children. Today there’s a story containing allegations from two more women. The Philly Post jumps to his defense.

Piers Morgan gave testimony in the ongoing phone hacking investigation, stating that the Daily Mirror was not involved and didn’t hack anyone. However, when asked about how he got his hands on a voice message from Heather Mills (the former Mrs. Paul McCartney), his answer contradicts hers.

Click through for more media changes.

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A Road Map for Pitching Travel Media


Real people and offbeat experiences, not perfect places, are the most coveted types of travel stories, according to a panel of travel media editors at a Publicity Club of New York event on Tuesday. In a notable departure from many other media beats, there was hardly any mention of celebrity-driven content.

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Revolving Door: Occupy Wall Street in the News, ‘WSJ Europe’ in Hot Water, and More

Photo: Reuters

Pew Research Center data shows that coverage of Occupy Wall Street has reached early Tea Party levels. The research indicates that, after a slow start, the turning point was a question posed to President Obama during a presser last week. During the first week of October, OWS consumed seven percent of news coverage.

The Wall Street Journal Europe may be in hot water over allegations it sold copies of the paper in bulk to a consulting company it has close business ties to in order to maintain circulation numbers. In other News Corp. news, more investors are calling for Rupert Murdoch to get dumped from the company board. Investors are also questioning the board members’ ability to effectively and lawfully run the company because of its deference to Murdoch.

Rachael Ray is moving her magazine Every Day with Rachael Ray from Reader’s Digest Association to Meredith. Reader’s Digest Association has experienced the turmoil of multiple CEOs over the past five months. And EDWRR has taken hits in circ and advertising numbers recent months. [via NY Post]

The New York Times has announced plans to cut 20 newsroom staffers. The paper hopes that 20 candidates will volunteer for buyouts. The company is also seeking to save some money in its business units. The NYT will announce third quarter earnings next Thursday.

Click through for more of this week’s media changes.

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Revolving Door: Hurricane Irene Coverage, Slate, Romenesko, and More

Hurricane Irene Photo: NOAA

Hurricane Irene coverage is coming on as strong as the storm is. A state of emergency has now been declared in five states.

Jack Shafer and three other staff members have been laid off at Slate. Fellow journalists are not reacting favorably.

Jim Romenesko, Poynter’s popular media blogger, is going into “semi-retirement” starting January 2012. He’ll be launching his own site, JimRomenesko.com, and working part-time at Poynter. He’ll still be tweeting under his usual handles, and will continue with his other websites.

ABC News and plenty of other media outlets have announced their planned 9/11 coverage.

Bloomberg is acquiring BNA, a company that provides legal and regulatory research and analysis. The deal is worth $990 million and should close this year.

Thankfully, journalists held in the Rixos Hotel in Tripoli have been freed. CNN’s Matthew Chance offers a first-hand account.

More media moves after the jump.

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Tea Party Falling Out of Favor

Photo: Jonathan Ernst, Reuters

A New York Times/CBS News poll shows that 40 percent of respondents have a view of the Tea Party that is “not favorable.” When this poll was done in April 2010, only 18 percent of respondents answered that way.

According to the Times, it looks like the more people get to know the Tea Party, the less they like it. In that earlier poll, 18 percent of people also said they were Tea Party supporters, but only four percent had actually attended a Tea Party event or donated money to the cause.

Movement leaders blame the Democrats (natch) and their success for the sour turn, but it may be that they’re actually out of touch with what the people want, which includes things like compromise.

Even if the Tea Party isn’t quite as popular as it once was, the Republicans are trying to find a way to harness that movement’s die-hard supporters to its benefit in the 2012 election.

[via The New York Times]

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