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Public Relations

Public Relations

You’re Hired! Finding the Right PR Talent

It is no longer enough to be a hard worker and team player. The skills valued by PR professionals and their bosses mirror some of the qualitative traits most coveted by employers in any industry. The just-released Global Communications Report, by the University of Southern California’s Center for Public Relations provides some interesting data on current trends in the media and in the world of public relations. Last week, I wrote a post exploring the changing media mix and the projections for further, possibly dramatic, change in media usage anticipated in the next few years. The study also shines a light on another challenge that has not received adequate attention in our industry: hiring the appropriate talent. One of the key conclusions of the USC report is that there remain questions today about the PR industry’s ability to attract the right talent. In fact, top executives in PR agencies and in…

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Journalism, Media Relations, Public Relations

Making the Transition from Media Hack to Law Firm Stooge

We see the notices almost daily about a reporter leaving the news business and moving to the (more lucrative) in-house communications positions. Just last week it happened again as a senior legal affairs reporter is leaving the San Jose Mercury News to join leading global law firm Orrick. It’s a good get for the PR team at Orrick, because after all, who would know better how to work with a lawyer and sniff out a story than an experienced journalist. But leaving a career as a journalist to join a firm is much more than just a change in job, it has to include a change in mindset. As the Internet has made reporters’ lives more stressful more and more are choosing what appear to be the greener pastures of PR. It’s a transition I successfully navigated nearly 16 years ago, and requires some thought and reflection. Here are a few…

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Business Development, Public Relations

The One Question Lawyers Love To Ask

At a recent new business pitch I was asked the question that almost always comes up with prospective clients: How quickly will I see new business from our PR investment? PR alone is not magical it is just one of many resources an organization must invest in for new business. Too often people expect PR to do all of the work without. Firms need to also spend money on strategic advertising opportunities, sponsorships and memberships in trade groups. When asked about the ROI of PR m y answer is always the same: You can’t expect PR to bring in the business. Of course it does happen and I have great examples of how that has worked, but often those firms are already doing other things in the market to build their reputation and develop business. A law firm’s PR program is only a small piece of the overall business development…

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Public Relations

Demonstrating Your Value and the Value of PR

The New Year is inevitably a time of reflection for every industry. In the NFL, the first Monday after the regular season ends is “Black Monday” and this year January 4th is the date when many coaches are fired, with ownership deciding to make a change. In legal-industry public relations, firms are rarely fired around the New Year. But law firms, like NFL owners, like to reflect on what works and what hasn’t worked in their media and public relations efforts. PR isn’t measured like the wins and losses in the NFL, but it still needs to be measured. Yet measuring the value of PR, and the communication professionals overseeing PR, is far from an exact science. It’s generally impossible to quantify human behavior or to produce a spreadsheet at the end of a calendar year that shows how effective a PR team has been. This is not a new…

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