Tag Archives: media relations

Did some yoga, did some good

Thank you to everyone who participated in and/or donated to Yoga Bear’s 1st annual Cleveland Yogapalooza this past weekend.  The event was a great success and I know we appreciated all of the support and look forward to a bigger and better event next year.  I wanted to post a quick overview of the event for those of you who did not attend, and also for those who did but wanted to read my lovely recap:

Cleveland’s 1st Annual Yogapalooza was a success!  Around 30 people joined Yoga Bear at Wade Oval for our day of wellness and yoga and overall the event raised $600 for the organization!  This money will go to help grow the Cleveland Chapter of Yoga Bear as it is still in its beginning stages in the city.  Get excited for more to come from Yoga Bear!

Cleveland Yogapalooza

 The weather was uncharacteristically beautiful for Cleveland and Wade Oval proved to be a wonderful backdrop for the event.  We raffled off eight great prize packages (thank you to everyone who donated!) and also were able to pass out water bottles and samples of granola from Kaia Foods.  Gaiam, Yogapolooza’s national sponsor, provided aluminum water bottles for the first 25 people to register and also gave away 4 yoga mats, some blocks and straps and yoga dvd’s (thank you again for sponsoring the event!).

Cleveland Yogapalooza

The variety of classes were wonderful and enjoyed by all attendees.  Laura Noss started off the day with a Jivamukti-style flow class set to music and even included a song from the late, great Michael Jackson.  Following Laura, was Fabienne Bernard who shared her Healing Yoga class with the participants.  Rounding out the day was Marcia Camino who lead a beautiful Hatha class to end the event.  I can confidently say that everyone enjoyed the variety of classes, the yoga under the trees and the company. 

In terms of coverage, we had a visit from Fox 8 Cleveland, but unfortunately I do not think it turned into any footage.  We did have placement in The Plain Dealer (online and in the Friday Magazine To Do section), The Chagrin Valley Times, and the Cleveland Coffee News.  The event was posted on cleveland.com, callandpost.com, and ohiomag.com.  Keep an eye out for some great pictures taken by Jess and I which will be posted on the Yoga Bear Flickr account soon! 

Namaste

Namaste

Overall I think it was a great first year for the event in Cleveland.  We successfully raised some money for the cause and increased awareness Yoga Bear’s presence in Cleveland with the general public and the Cleveland yoga community! Thank you everyone again and namaste!

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Media relations is like… dating?

In the March issue of PR Tactics there is an interesting article written by Rob Lynch that compares media relations to dating.  Now I must admit, when I first read the title I was skeptical- I mean MR like dating? Come on.  But after starting to read I realized that Rob was not insane, he was exactly right.  This comparison seemed enlightening and made the world of MR that much more clear so I thought I would share some key ideas I found especially relevant.

  • Most reporters want a monogamous relationship, or the exclusive.  So true and yet so hard to pull off.  I am not saying that I am against this idea, on the contrary I completely agree and would want an exclusive myself if I were writing the story.  But from a pr perspective, how do you find that perfect reporter to have this relationship with?  Do you pitch the idea to a number and may the first and best man win? Or pitch one by one and risk not getting any placement or not enough feedback to your client in a reasonable amount of time?  I, in my short time in this field, do not have the answers to these questions yet, but I constantly question them and hope to eventually find the answers.
  • Uninterested reporters will not respond no matter how often you contact them.   I don’t even think this needs discussion, I just loved it and thought, how true.
  • As the same pick up lines do not work on every person, the same pitch will probably not work for every reporter.  This may be one of the very first things I learned when beginning to contact the media.  That extra step of doing your research and personalizing your pitch to each RELEVANT reporter makes all the difference in the world.  Another analogy I think fits well with this idea is an un-researched pitch is like getting spam in your inbox-  No one reads spam so why would reporters be expected to read it either?
  • Placement may provide immediate gratification, but relationships are often built over time.  This point is what I am most excited about as I become a more seasoned PR professional.  I love every day learning more about the people I pitch and finding stories or ideas that truly help and fit their coverage.  It is frustrating to have a media list and know no one, but even in my short time at this internship I am already familiar with many reporters and can’t wait to continue our relationships in the future.

Now although I think Rob did a great job, I wanted to add a few insights myself.  As a participant in the dating world there are a few things that have helped my love life and I think will help me strive in MR as well.  So here is my additional list of tips for the dater or PR professional:

  • You must have genuine interest in the other person.  You can go through the motions of dating or PR, but if you don’t truly care about the person on the other side, 9 times out of 10 you will fail.  Both in dating and PR I genuinely want to get to know the person on the other side, build a relationship and help them succeed.   I believe this sincerity is apparent in my pitches and I hope is apparent in my pick up lines too 😉
  • Kindness and Confidence.  Confidence mixed with friendliness I think is the key combination to getting past that initial introduction phase in the dating and media world.  When someone exudes confidence, it is apparent and attractive and who can turn down someone who is kind?  I know I have a hard time of it and in PR I think the same is true.

Now of course you will still receive exceptions to these rules and like in dating, not every relationship is meant to last, but I think this analogy is a great one to keep in mind.  My parting tip?  Draw understanding from the one you know better to help you out in the other, equally important, part of your life as well.

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Intern Insights… Media Pitches

This week marked the beginning of my second month at my internship.  After four weeks in I finally feel less like the new girl and more like a pr professional who has a perspective and view on the field, no matter if it is still a small one 🙂  That being said I thought it would be beneficial to myself, other new pr professionals and people looking to get into the field to hear my thoughts- me being a bright, fresh new face to the profession.  That being said, I decided my first topic would be…. media pitches.

Since the start of my internship much of my time has been devoted to pitching the media.  Not only has this task taken over a good portion of my time sheets, but has also proven to be the most challenging and rewarding aspect of my internship thus far.  I have not only  pitched one story, but numerous over a variety of topic areas and therefore, although still very new at this staple pr task, I have already come up with some hints/tips for myself as well as anyone pitching the media.  I’m sure more will come as my internship and life continues but for now here it goes:

  1. Know the topic you are pitching, WELL.  One of the reasons I was initially drawn to PR was because of the wide range of subjects and assignments you are exposed to due to the nature of the field.   Once starting this internship I was not disappointed.  I have already worked on such wide ranging subjects as art, hr, finance, public utilities, just to name a few.  One of the very first things I learned when contacting the media though is, know your shit.  It does not matter that you may have 20 different clients in 20 different sectors because at that moment you are the pr expert on *subject a* and you better be sure to know what you are talking about and be able to answer questions if you are asked, or else how are you going to be taken seriously by anyone let alone a reporter?
  2. Know your reporter, or try your hardest to.  One of the major frustrations I have had thus far is being new and not familiar AT ALL with the reporters I am expected to pitch to.  Sure I know the reporters I previously followed in my personal time, but I quickly learned there is a whole world of journalism to navigate and it takes finesse to master.  I did not realize the importance of this tip until I began pitching for myself and realized that if I don’t know my reporter and his/her interests or beat I could end up wasting both of our time.  It is near impossible to pitch a story to someone who is not interested or does not cover that topic no matter how persuasive you are.  Therefore Lexis Nexis, Google News, and online pub searches are quickly becoming my best friends.
  3. Be persistent.  This is by far the main thing I have learned about media pitching  over the past month.  Media pitching is hard.  Media pitching is time consuming.  Media pitching is a lot backtracking.  But with persistence, you can succeed.  Now of course by persistence I do not mean annoyance, but I do mean making sure you and your story are visible, you are doing the appropriate follow-up, and you are not giving up especially with a story that is great and a pub or reporter it is perfect for.  Of course you might not always succeed, but you could.

So I realize that was only three tips, but I didn’t want this post to take up my whole page and plus hey, I’m still new and there is plenty of time for insight in the future.  But for the start of week #5 that is my first intern insight, and be sure there will be more to come 🙂

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