Writing pests

One of my favourite stories of last week was the story of disability advocate Sam Connor’s revamp of a website that was sorely in need of help. According to SBS online, when Connor “first saw the official website for The Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability, she noticed a…

Doing PR differently – really?

Let me set the scene: Over the years I’ve seen many PR agencies launched and spruiked. Some of them stick around to be long-term and successful players, others fold or merge. I’ve also seen – particularly in Adelaide – established public relations agencies thrive over twenty years or more. I’m regularly amazed by the number…

The defensive PR practitioner

I was part of a PR panel on ABC radio recently.  (I had to take care to squeeze the headphones on over my hair, held up in a bun). In our discussion of public relations, the focus was on those media managers who ‘block’ or deflect queries from journalists rather than responding swiftly and helpfully….

Ricky Gervais is right (and wrong) about the local paper

In Ricky Gervais’s latest TV series, After Life, he’s a writer at a free community newspaper. After several grumpy episodes interviewing local people about their so-called “stories”, Ricky’s character has an epiphany. He says ‘everybody deserves to be in their local paper’ at least once in their lives. It’s a lovely thought – in what…

The Human Touch

When PR consultants sit around a meeting table with their clients, often one of the first questions asked is: “What’s new?” Or in other words: “What can I pitch to the media?” For PR consultants who work in media relations and promotions, it’s all about the next angle, the new product, the trend the client…

Do we need PR in 2019?

With 13 days until 2019, let’s turn our attention to whether organisations still need PR. The short answer: yes. The longer answer: hell, yes. As long as reputation, stakeholders and relationships are important to organisations – across nonprofits, private enterprise, government and more – PR will continue to be useful and valuable. [Related reading A…

Your goal is: be SMARTER

One of the great benefits of teaching public relations at a university is the regular reminders I receive of the standards I should be striving for as a PR consultant. This was brought home to me this past week, as I assessed the communication strategies submitted by post-grad students as part of an assignment. As…

Changes in journalism impacting PR

In a recent PR Daily post, Mike Schneider wrote of the ‘4 ways journalism changes are affecting PR’.  While based on the US experience, the piece has relevance for the Australian PR practitioner. Scheider recounts that “nearly a quarter of jobs in the industry have vanished in less than 10 years” in the US. It’s…

All important: truth in PR

Public relations practitioners often find themselves defending their profession. After all, isn’t PR “spin”? Isn’t it “damage control”, “manipulation” and “propaganda”? No. No, it isn’t. Practised professionally, public relations is ethical, truthful, often serving  noble causes, sharing very important messages which can make the community a better place. To illustrate this when discussing (slash-defending) PR,…

5-minute crisis comms

Or: how to begin your crisis communications plan in five minutes This year I’ve signed on several new clients (welcome aboard, all!) and along with devising happy new PR plans together, I’ve been turning us towards darker thoughts. Like: what could possibly go wrong in your organisation? And what would you say if things did?…