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Posts Tagged ‘Rick French’

Spin the Agencies of Record


“There are no second acts in American lives.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

North Carolina’s French/West/Vaughan is the PR AOR for former trial lawyer, senator and presidential/vice presidential candidate John Edwards, who announced his return to the law business this week by launching the firm Edwards Kirby five years after his political career came to an end.

F/W/V CEO Rick French says his organization “probably would not have made this [client] public had it not been reported [by a local CBS affiliate]” after interviews appeared in The New York Times, the National Law Journal and other publications.

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Gemesis Is Proudly Selling ‘Lab-Created’ Diamonds

Gemesis has just launched its e-commerce site, which will make it easy for consumers to purchase one or more of its “lab-created” diamonds. Jewels that many people would label fakes.

However, the company is proudly touting the value of these unnatural gems. The company is quick to point out that the quality of its diamonds are “equal to the best quality mined diamonds.” Moreover, they say their diamonds are “all certified as Type IIa,” a rare marker for mined diamonds.

And perhaps, most importantly given a recent BBMG Conscious Consumer Report, these gems are sustainable and conflict-free.

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Crisis Communications: Getting Back to Basics

We’re only a month into the new year and 2011 is already turning into a crisis bonanza.

We’ve gotten to know Taco Bell’s president Greg Creed (at left in an appearance on Good Morning America) and the company’s beef recipe following a class action lawsuit. Toyota has had its recall of the month. The list of trust troubles at Johnson & Johnson has one former marketing staffer telling The New York Times that, “it looks like a plane spinning out of control.” And folks are calling for boycotts of Chick-Fil-A after one of its restaurants agreed to cater an event hosted by an anti-gay organization.

So it seems like a good time to take a step back and revisit some of the basics of crisis communications and reputation management.

We asked three experts on the topic to share their thoughts on some of the key steps to respond to a crisis and rebuild trust. Their responses are after the jump.

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Rick French, Chairman and CEO, French|West|Vaughn

Rick French.jpg

How does a mid-size agency compete in a market crowded with global mega-firms and agile boutiques? French|West|Vaughn has found a way. The firm recently expanded with the opening of its Dallas office, and continues to be one of the top mid-size agencies, especially in the Southeast U.S.

PRNewser recently interviewed agency chairman and CEO Rick French, who made no secret about where he sees growth opportunities: digital. “Every new business call we’re getting seems to have an interest in that area,” he said.

Read on for the full interview.

What’s your take on the new business front for mid-size agencies right now? Are things heating up?

I think things are heating up and have been for a good six months. With our agency in particular, we’re probably seeing the most new business activity in five years, even going back prior to the recession. We’re actually in some ways struggling to keep up with the leads and being able to respond to them.

Who are your some of your biggest clients?

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