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Posts Tagged ‘Council of Public Relations Firms’

Weber Shandwick, CPRF Vets Discuss Diversity in PR

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Earlier this month, PR veteran Mike Paul earned a bit of attention when he announced his plans to stage a hunger strike to protest a lack of diversity in the public relations world.

Since that story ran, we reached out to several contacts within the industry to get their takes on how we arrived at this point in the conversation—and where we should go from here.

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The Future of Content: Takeaways from the Council of PR Firms ‘Content Frenzy’ Event

CONTENT!!!

  • Content is the future of public relations—but do we really want to enter such a “shitty business?”
  • Content is the best way to reach the audiences our clients value most—but we can’t follow the media industry “over the cliff”
  • Our core competencies are in storytelling and earned media, and we should “think like editors”—but we have to demonstrate real-world value to our clients or we’re toast.

Confused yet?

The Council of PR Firms‘ 2013 “Content Frenzy” Critical Issues Forum was nothing if not contentious. During the event’s opening panel moderated by Ogilvy CEO Chris Graves, BuzzMachine founder/media critic Jeff Jarvis and WebbMedia Group CEO Amy Webb encouraged attendees to forget everything they thought they knew about “content” and stop trying to view PR as the new journalism, because:

His point? PR is all about “relationships”, not “creating more crappy content”, so we should stay away. And he didn’t let up.

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We’ll Be Live-Tweeting Tomorrow’s CPRF ‘Critical Issues Forum’

CIF-Color-Logo“Content” is the word we love to hate this year, and tomorrow’s 2013 Critical Issues Forum will let us know why everyone can’t stop talking about it. The event, sponsored by the Council of Public Relations Firms, will be moderated by global Oglivy CEO Christopher Graves and Aedhmar Hynes of Text100 Global Communications; speakers hail from organizations and publications as diverse as BuzzFeed, Funny or Die, Harvard Business Review, Bloomberg and Contently.

They’ll all be sharing their insights on content creation and the “sponsored content” phenomenon, and we’ll be tweeting with the hashtag #contentfrenzy—so stay tuned to see if these big names all happen to reach the same conclusions on content…or not. More likely not.

University of Maryland PR Students to Run Lecture Series Event

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Here’s a great one that we missed last week: as more industry organizations continue to partner with schools in the interest of teaching young people the hands-on, real-world applications of the public relations skill set, The University of Maryland‘s PR department has put event management responsibilities into its students’ hands.

This is no small get-together, either: it’s the Sixth Annual Grunig Lecture Series, set to take place on October 30th. Organized by the Institute for Public Relations and the Council of Public Relations Firms, it will feature Fleishman-Hilliard president/CEO and CPR chair Dave Senay leading a series of conversations on the theme “Ethics As Culture”—and it will all be managed by a group of 10 university PR majors who go by “the Grunig team.”

As one senior puts it:

“I’m receiving three credits for this, but we’re also setting the precedent for as long as the series continues. Everyone will be learning from our mistakes.”

Event organizer and UM communications chair Elizabeth Toth says “It is important to our students to learn how to apply what they learn in the classroom”, and we agree: could there be a better way to utilize the real-world skills you’ve accumulated while earning credit at the same time?

*Image via The University of Maryland

What Is PR Becoming?

Party.It’s the question of the day/year/decade, and our friend Matt Shaw, director of communications at the Council of Public Relations Firms wrote a post addressing it earlier this week. You should read it yourself, but here are some highlights:

Do labels like “public relations,” “advertising,” and “interactive” make sense any longer? Will entirely new disciplines emerge to replace these designations?

In our 2013 Q2 member survey, more than 90% of public relations firms reported selling social media strategy, social media crisis, mobile strategy, community management, website development and digital video production and distribution. More than 80% told us they were offering online advertising creative and online media buying.

But PR will remain distinctive:

Integration and traditional disciplinary boundaries aren’t mutually exclusive. There’s no need to give up one in embracing the other. In fact, the key to our continued success in the near future may well be to embrace integration without taking it so far that we lose a sense of who and what we have traditionally been as a discipline.

The differences in today’s market:

During the 1990s, when I was working for a firm in Boston, we told stories primarily by getting journalists and others to write about our clients. Today, we tell stories with words and pictures, using video or infographics and platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.

Matt goes on to list and link to specific examples of firms expanding their offerings to better serve clients. Read the rest or save it for the weekend.

Smaller Specialty Firms Competing with the Biggest Names in PR

A recent story in Crain’s New York Business is of particular interest to us because it highlights a theoretical PR industry of the future in which specialization is the key to success.

As we all know, the recession led many big-name clients to take their PR operations in-house–and some of New York’s smaller, more ambitious firms responded by tailoring their services more specifically to businesses within certain fast-growing industries like health care, education and technology.

In short, while these blink-and-you’ll-miss-them firms aren’t yet established leaders of the PR pack, their portfolios filled with marquee clients, they are posting impressive revenue totals at time when many businesses have yet to loosen their recession-era belts.

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Do We Need Universal Standards for Measuring Success in PR?

The art (and it is an art) of measuring success for clients has long been a challenge for PR firms. In the era of “Big Data”, most industry veterans agree that metrics, otherwise known as “numbers”, are more important than ever–and that the PR business needs to continually work on improving the ways we show clients the true value of our work.

A recent Council of Public Relations Firms blog post by vice president of research and development David Geddes proposes the creation and adoption of industry-wide measurement standards. When every firm has a different way of measuring success, clients understandably get a little frustrated: how can they compare and contrast individual campaigns?

Geddes and his group, The Coalition for Public Relations Research Standards, brought together various industry organizations including the Council of Public Relations Firms, Institute for Public Relations, PRSA, Global Alliance, and AMEC to try and tackle the project. They also organized a panel of big-name clients like McDonald’s, General Electric and more to review the results of their efforts and determine, as PR customers, whether the standards are relevant and “usable.”

Their goal: come up with universal ways to show that projects involving social media, traditional media and even ethics are really working for clients.

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Roll Call: Another Porter Novelli departure; A Council of PR Firms replacement; and More

Porter Novelli‘s global president and CFO Anthony Viceroy is leaving the company, joining CEO Gary Stockman and CMO Michael Goldberg, who have also recently stepped down from their positions. Ad Age reports that Viceroy will be heading to a health care company. “Porter Novelli’s future is less clear,” the magazine says.

Speaking of Gary Stockman, Dave Senay, president and CEO of Fleishman-Hillard, will be replacing him as chair of the Council of Public Relations Firms starting December 1. According to the Council’s president Kathy Cripps, the organization’s leaders have to be working for a member firm. Senay is already on the Council’s board and is the chair of the Critical Issues Forum.

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Council of PR Firms Publishes an Advertorial To Target Marketers

This week, the Council of Public Relations Firms has published a “Branded Content” special in Ad Age titled ‘The PR Factor 2011,”  which you can also find online here.

According to the opening, authored by Council chairman and Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky: “We created this special section to cue marketers in to how public relations is taking a more prominent place in integrated marketing campaigns and to take a look at what this means for the overall marketing services industry. It also highlights the variety of ways in which CMOs and brand managers can partner with PR firms to drive results.”

The section includes four articles such as one on trends predictions for 2012 and another on the steps PR is taking to meet the needs of the new marketing landscape.

But is it oxymoronic for a PR organization to run a “special advertising section” in an advertising trade publication to talk up PR?

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Polansky Elected Council of PR Firms Board Chair

Weber Shandwick president Andy Polansky has been elected the 2011 chair of the Council of Public Relations Firms board of directors.  Other board officers include Capstrat CEO Ken Eudy as treasurer;  360 Public Relations MD Laura Tomasetti as secretary; and Margery Kraus, president and CEO of APCO Worldwide as immediate past chair of the Council.

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