Come to the Bad Pitch Blog NYC Bash on January 12, 2009

Bad Pitch Blog

Mark your calendars if you’re in NYC Monday evening, January 12th. Richard and Kevin will be in NYC and are hoping you’ll meet up with us. If you need a reason, we’ll note it’s this blog’s third birthday. Stay tuned for details as we scour the city for the perfect spot…someplace less Night at the Roxbury and more Casino Royale , minus the spies, death and poker of course. UPDATE: We''ll be at Under the Volcano bar starting at 6pm on Monday night, January 12. It''s located on 12 E. 36th St.

Pay it Back, Pay it Forward – A Moral Imperative - The Do's of Career Search Help

PR Job Coach

This is a guest blog that I penned for [link] , the blog site for search executive Lindsay Olson of Paradigm Staffing [link]. The blog is repeated here to convey the urgency of helping reduce unemployment by raising awareness of those who are gainfully employed to the plight of those who are not.

Web 112

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Basic Training - Preparing for the Road to a Public Relations Career

PR Job Coach

I love it when I receive questions from young inquiring minds. And normally it is folks just getting started in the public relations field. Never did I expect to see a question from an energetic person in high school who is anxious for success in our industry. The inquiry from the high schooler went something like this. I am in high school want to pursue a career as a celebrity publicist. But I always wondered how would i get to such a big step like this.

The Sky's the Limit. What do you want to do!

PR Job Coach

One of the advantages of the public relations field is that there are many components that allow you to generalize or specialize not unlike the medical field. I just received an inquiry from a student pondering the question of "what to do." I am a recent grad with a degree in multidisciplinary studies with three minors including public relations, arts administration, and entrepreneurship. My degree is not specialized and I''m having a hard time figuring out for what type of jobs I should apply.

Study 104

When You Have Lemons, Make Lemonade

PR Job Coach

I recently heard from a young pro about a career predicament that likely occurs far too often. The job was not as advertised. Here is what this young pro had to say: "I need advice on which direction to go with my career. I graduated in 2008 BA in PR and four internships. I took a job with a new company and was promised training. My job responsibilities were suppose to be creating marketing initiatives, writing press releases, and some design.

System 100

Mission Impossible? Migrating to a Career in Public Relations

PR Job Coach

Here is another guest blog of mine on Lindsay Olson''s site on migrating from a career in journalism to one in public relations. link] Being a public relations job coach, I am constantly advising folks about how best to manage and architect their growth as public relations professionals. Lately though, I am receiving queries about how to migrate into a career in PR from journalism. Welcome to Mission Impossible! Making a career change in this economic environment is challenging at best.

Digg 100

WORST PITCH IN THE WORLD! (apologies to Keith Olbermann)

Bad Pitch Blog

Bad Email bad pitch Bland Flowers Dumb People Sponsorship Trends For 2009. Last August, I received what can only be classified as the worst pitch (and dumbest idea) (and most greedy letter) that I have ever gotten. And this time, unlike the ones you guys forward to Kevin and me, it came directly TO me. Which makes me think that the two people behind it were not only naïve, but also fabulously stupid.

Three Ways to Suck Less in 2010

Bad Pitch Blog

Review Your 2009 Calendar: Before you toss out, archive or delete your 2009 calendar, spend some time walking through each month. Celebrate the mistakes you’ve already learned from in 2009. If you worked during this holiday week.thanks for closing out the decade with us. As the Bad Pitch blog heads into its 5th year of existence, we’re jazzed about 2010. So we’ll be brief. Here are three ways to suck less in 2010.

Believe In Yourself; But Believe In Trends More

Bad Pitch Blog

We''re all looking for something to take us to a better place-workwise, that is. How do we do that? Follow trends. When you’ve got one example, it’s a “noticeable situation.” When you’ve got two examples, it’s a fact. And when you’ve got three examples—welcome to a trend.

The Blind? Deaf? Or Just Dumb Pitch

Bad Pitch Blog

Bloggers send more than a few emails asking to be removed from a media list, we also send emails to PR people to tell them why a pitch doesn’t work for their blog – and perhaps what might work in the future. I rarely receive a response from these notes – which is unfortunate and yet telling. But music blogger Olivia Giovetti brings us an experience with a PR firm representing high-end hospitality clients that serves as a clear, and very frustrating, example of what not to do.

Have Balls; Mortgage Will Follow!

Bad Pitch Blog

The REAL Difference Between Journalists & Bloggers

Bad Pitch Blog

One of the more frequent questions asked of the Bad Pitch blog is “what’s the difference between pitching journalists and bloggers?” We used to assume that the main difference was that pitching bloggers requires hyper-customization. And while they do, it’s deeper than this – there’s a bigger difference. 80/20 Rule If we did an analysis of all the ham-fisted pitches sent our way, I’ll bet that 80 percent or more of them are originally aimed at bloggers. This 80/20 rule has always bothered us.

A look at your personality: Try being one person

Bad Pitch Blog

In her book, " am*B H*ous ," Debra Condren says career-oriented women have to fight to get any work-life balance. Women, she claims, are constantly fighting to maintain separate personal and professional lives. Women feel there has to be a sweet spot! Give up on some personal goals and some professional ones, but damn it, have it all. Dr. Condren believes that women cannot, however, enjoy a real balance!

The Interview Brief: A Bad Pitch How-To

Bad Pitch Blog

The pitch worked. The interview’s scheduled. Now the real work begins. We could arguably start “The Bad Interview Blog” with all the gaffes that can occur in this critical phase of media relations. Instead of more this drama, we’ll help you create an interview brief so you, and your source, can steer clear of a bad interview. The 411 and Then Some The goal of the document is to prepare your source for the interview and it also keeps you on target during the interview.

Adult Diapers “No Joke” Pitch

Bad Pitch Blog

You know it: Market caps are messy! But why did Kate Ennis attempt to prove it without any real facts when writing to BusinessWeek to try and get them to write about the growth business of incontinence? I get we all have a job to do, and pitching a product line like this is definitely sticky.but come on! In a recession when the reached Personal Finance columnist has a lot of serious, timely and real work to do, the below just reads like total poop. And now I’ll stop with the diaper jokes.)

Five Crucial Tips for the Perfect Pitch Letter

Bad Pitch Blog

Pitch letters might be the most effective tool in your arsenal that you’re not using effectively. Since we originally took our PR baby steps, it has been tattooed in our minds that pitch letters are the Holy Grail and learning to skillfully craft a missive to attract media attention reaps vast benefits. Then why do many in PR compose epistles that simply fall on deaf, uh, eyes? Admit it. You know what it feels like to have a gruff editor or a reporter slam the phone down on your enthusiastic ear.

Answers To Questions from the Press: Simple, Easy, Done

Bad Pitch Blog

Reporters are notoriously cynical, and to be honest, if you had their job you would be, too. So you need to be one step (or ten) ahead of them. Play “devil’s advocate.” What are the first questions you’re going to get? What are the questions that will make you uncomfortable, or that you don’t have an answer for yet? You need to find the holes before the reporters find them for you. More often than not, there are great answers to the questions, but only you will know them.

"Gee, Beav, Isn't PR Just Like Advertising?"

Bad Pitch Blog

Although I have toiled in public relations for 95 years (!), it seems as though most of my friends—not to mention my immediate family—have trouble understanding exactly what I do. When I am speaking with them about a media interview, say on television, they assume I’m on camera. When I say I am working with a newspaper reporter on story, they ask me why my clients don’t just advertise in the publication because: ”PR and advertising are the same, right?”

Good Pitch: Sound Content Nets Podcast Placement

Bad Pitch Blog

Our latest good pitch comes from Tamara Gruber with Red Giant Consulting (alas, no relation to Macgruber , we checked). Her pitch is to some discerning, fellow PR colleagues – Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson of the For Immediate Release podcast. Background "In doing outreach for a client, Tungle.com, I reached out to Shel Holtz and Neville Hobson.

Technology Changes, People Don’t

Bad Pitch Blog

After five years client side, it only took me a couple of weeks back in agency world to see how much had changed and how much hadn''t. Instead of detailing what I mean by the above passive-aggressive statement, I’d much rather remind our readers to not be blinded by "The Shiny New." Your clients are coming to you and asking for a Facebook page, or they want a Twitter account. Or they want you to do something with their hastily squatted-upon profiles on these sites.

Know Yourself, Be Yourself for Better Pitches

Bad Pitch Blog

Last week, I had the blind luck to present right before Artie Isaac at SummitUp. If you don’t know Artie, you should. Artie Isaac co-founded SpeakerSite and the Young Isaac Agency. He also teaches creativity, consumer behavior, copywriting and the history of advertising at The Ohio State University and the Columbus College of Art & Design. Artie started his career with agencies in New York, including Ogilvy & Mather.

Don't Get Cute With Naming

Bad Pitch Blog

By Guest Blogger Susan E. Jacobsen I recently came across a blog with relatively decent content, but with just the oddest of names -- Outhouse General Counsel. I had a hard time taking what the blogger wrote seriously because I kept getting caught up in the blog/company name. It struck me as odd and I couldn’t help but shake my head. It was a play on words and while he explained his ( il )logic for the name, it really would not jive with anyone outside of the industry he was targeting.

Chris Brogan on Better Blogger Pitches

Bad Pitch Blog

Earlier this week one half of The Bad Pitch Blog kicked off SummitUp -- an event packed with great content, including presentations from Bob Garfield and Chris Brogan. The Bad Pitch Blog took advantage of this quality time to ask a few folks about how to improve the pitch. First up is Chris Brogan -- author of the New York Times Bestseller "Trust Agents." The book stems from his extensive blogging, speaking and community building efforts as president of New Marketing Labs.

Fast Five Links: Me Write Pretty One Day

Bad Pitch Blog

Here are some quick links to help you with your pitching efforts -- they all focus on writing. Don’t read into that though. 1) One Word One Word.com One word, sixty seconds. It’s a great creative exercise to keep your writing chops honed and your brain thinking. 2) Acronym Finder Acronym Finder.com Acronyms are inside baseball and ultimately make your writing harder to read. Acronym Finder is a reminder of how bad it can get, but it’s also a handy reference too.

Creativity Is What We Need Every Day

Bad Pitch Blog

Creativity is almost impossible to define. According to consumer-insight researchers at Lucid Incorporated, every person recognizes he or she has it, but its meaning varies widely. Anna Sandilands and Anna David, who quit Starbucks to found a company notably called Lucid, have appealing perspectives on creativity, both from their experience at the coffee lords and from an astounding 2006 research project on behalf of Apple Computer.

Jumping Off the Branding Bandwagon

Bad Pitch Blog

During the past decade everyone seemed to be—or pretended to be—in the business of branding. The majority of ad agencies, PR firms, Hollywood agents, management consultants, and even many focus group participants, jumped on the got-to-brand bandwagon with glee and abandon. Every purveyor of fine branding boasts a proprietorship over unique methodologies, outstanding insights, and uber-talented staff that will transform a product or service into something they can dub larger than life.

Brand 44

Damn It, Let's Get Those Metrics Going!

Bad Pitch Blog

Nielsen Media Research says they are measuring ratings for TV shows “regardless of the platform on which it is viewed.” That means they’re tracking not only couch potatoes, but also folks who watch shows online, on their phones, on the ole m-3 and “outside the home” (whatever that means), thus plugging the absolute hole in advertising metrics. Ah, advertising metrics. How many people saw your ad and when. Share of voice. Lovely stuff, that.

Turn Off the Cloaked Reporter in this Transparent World

Bad Pitch Blog

The word cloaked means “to cover or conceal.” For those of us who subscribe to reporter/expert lead services ProfNet, HARO, or competitors, we’ve come to know cloaked to mean “I’m a reporter that doesn’t think you’re worthy of knowing who I am until you are been vetted or sniffed at.”

Bad Pitch Gets Vocal at Vocus Customer Event

Bad Pitch Blog

It’s one of the reasons Richard Laermer will be speaking at the 2009 Vocus Users Conference on the morning of June 5th in Washington, D.C. We’re a firm believer that it’s the techniques not the tools that cause PR spam. If you’re attending the event, be sure to check out "Avoiding the Bad Pitch Blog" for some timeless information on how to craft a pitch for the ages. For the rest of us, I have to believe they’ll be some live tweeting….he he hinted.

Landing the Interview Vs. Getting the Job

Bad Pitch Blog

After years in your PR dream job you may now be among the unemployed, checking out job boards, receiving alerts from Indeed, scanning craigslist. You’ve sent your resume to anything in the neighborhood of your capabilities; then you stare at your PDA and wait. While you might be in shock, halfheartedly going through motions of what you think you should be doing to “look for a job,” this lackadaisical and noncommittal approach will get you precisely nowhere.

The Spray and Pray Pitch

Bad Pitch Blog

Begin forwarded message: Date: June 3, 2009 9:45:42 AM CDT The "Pull Out" Method Rivals Condoms? Spray and Pray, Dialing for Dollars. Both are mass pitch approaches that show more desperation than strategy. We’ve seen the unfortunate results of these approaches when a Jewish Mommy Blogger is invited to attend an event during Passover or a vegan blogger gets pitched about barbecue. We cringe, we shake our heads and either forward it like it’s hot or give thanks we didn’t make the misstep.

Top 4 Ways Twitter Can Improve Your Pitches

Bad Pitch Blog

A little bird tells me that Twitter can reinforce habits that, in turn, can improve our media relations efforts. 1)Brevity. More effective writing translates into a lower word count. Hey, even this post was going to be a top 5 list. 140 characters force you to be on topic. A three paragraph pitch (or less) should be enough for you to get your point across. 2) Links. Links point to an image, or an article, that payoff your tweets. Why aren’t you using more links, and fewer words, in your pitches?

CRAP Holiday Tie-Ins Don’t Come with Receipts

Bad Pitch Blog

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year”…for bad pitches. Our email boxes have been stuffed with a few politically correct holiday cards and a metric ton of bad pitches desperately trying to tie-in to the KwanzmasHann season (yeah, I skipped Festivus, save it for the airing of the grievances). Seriously though, lawn chairs in December? OK, nothing that blatantly off season.

Why PR Doesn't Happen Overnight

Bad Pitch Blog

Despite the fact that news happens pretty much while you sleep, PR is surely not an overnight process (to say the least). In PR, as with so many facets of life, patience is a virtue. We hear about “instant gratification” every day. Everything from digitally recording boob tubes to Lipton’s Cold Brew teabags is engineered to give us exactly what we want when the whim overtakes us. Unfortunately, to really savor both little and big luxuries, you have to earn them.

Radio 44

Michael Jackson’s Dead: Now Comes the Mainstream Media’s Death

Bad Pitch Blog

Tough media week for superstar Michael Jackson. Imagine, your death being announced by TMZ. Horrors! Actually, I adore TMZ. It’s the one program and site that makes me laugh all the time. A lot of tabloids can learn from it. They should stop yelling at us. TMZ “covers the waterfront” in LA—there is no story they don’t have first. And it’s something their brothers at Time Warner (heck, they are all owned by the same Dad) should take a hint from. RIP, Michael.

BusinessWeek Sends a Good Pitch

Bad Pitch Blog

Mark Your Calendars for May 31st, 2009. May 13, 2009, Los Angeles- It''s good to be a kid, and there’s no reason to stop eating like one. Proof that well-written, creative content can carry the day, a BusinessWeek reporter sent us this pitch from Alphadog PR. Subject: Party Like a 5 Year Old! Try to keep your fingers out of the birthday cake and stop asking us "why?".

The Death of the Sci Fi Channel: Or, Semper Sy Fy!

Bad Pitch Blog

When asked why 2009 was a downer, a spokesperson pointed to the carton: “Draw a line from there.” Just this morning the Sci Fi channel became Sy Fy , which you can be assured will be back as Sci Fi not long after that. Just about everyone who has heard about this wondered “What branding company is sleeping with who over there?” You cannot pretend to like this moniker. There are reasons for this change—though none make sense.

Paid Third-Party Twitter Tweets – Seriously?!

Bad Pitch Blog

From Our Favorite Guest—Susan E. Jacobsen Would you ask someone to handwrite a thank you note for you and sign their name? Would you stop a stranger on the street to call your client and deliver bad news? I didn’t think so. So why, then, would you tarnish your shiny-as-brand-new-penny relationship with a reporter or publication by paying someone to send out your messages via Twitter?

The Trap of Desperation Tactics

Bad Pitch Blog

Some say we’re out of the recession. But if you consider the number of people you know “in transition,” I’ll argue we’re still in a period of forced change. Cue inspirational quote: “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity while an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty” – Winston Churchill. Forced change can be a good thing or a bad thing…it all depends on your outlook. I’m not going to turn this into a rallying cry.

Online Communication Tips For -- Communicators

Bad Pitch Blog

I know a lot of us PR types are wondering, what the heck can we do to make ourselves the best we can be when in fact almost everything we do is virtual. I''ve been thinking about this for a long time and have collected a list of ways to ensure that our online presence is absolutely perfect.and the best US we can proffer. By now, we’ve all received the message that our online reputations and images are as important, if not more important, than their off-the-Web counterparts.